Monday, March 28, 2016

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library

Grabenstein, Chris. Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library.  New York: Random House, 2013. Print.
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My Thoughts
This was a FUN read! Grabenstein creates a story about a new library opening. It's been twelve years since this Ohio town has had a library. A group of twelve year olds get to play the ultimate Luigi Lemoncello game--to get out of the library.

The allusions are FANTASTIC (I'm sure I missed some). The insertion of using the library is very educational (I want my aides to read this!), and I loved trying to figure out the game clues. I know I'm biased, but I love how Mr. Lemoncello loves the library (and for the reasons he does). "The library is more than a collection of dusty old books. It is a place to learn, explore, and grow!" (Grabenstein 75). Through this story, readers definitely do all three. I liked the insertion of all the many games (Do you remember Husker Du?). I liked that the kids acted like twelve year olds (sometimes in fiction, kids are the smartest thing and adults are written as bumbling buffoons). I loved the imaginative, thoughtful library design.

What I didn't like: nothing. I thought the structure was solid and the characters are believable.

The title reference is on page 73.

Now, a little more about the author. I got this book at TLA in 2014. I was actually in another author's line. Chris was nearby and cracking jokes. He was so personable. When I finished whoever's line I was in, I got in his line. I wasn't sure what he'd written, but I thought I'd get a copy for my daughter. He even signed it "For Bailey's Library!" Sadly, she didn't finish it (even though she says she read over 200 pages!). I'm going to start recommending this one to all of her friends, and I've already made sure the intermediate and junior high have copies.
Here's Chris autographing my daughter's book.

I found on Grabenstein's website a list of books mentioned in this story.

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