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Tweens Read: That time I took The Tween and a friend to a book festival to meet Natalie Lloyd and Jennifer Ziegler

It is only incredible motherly love that could make me wake up at 4:30 A.M. on a Saturday and drive almost 5 hours. I mean, do you know how early 4:30 A.M. is? And on a Saturday. A SATURDAY!

The Tween, Natalie Lloyd and Tween 2

As you may know, earlier this year The Tween, who is now 12, had some amazing life moments in part thanks to the authors Natalie Lloyd (A Snicker of Magic) and Jennifer Ziegler (Revenge of the Flower Girls). So when I learned that both authors would be at this year’s Tweens Read book festival, I really wanted to try and take her so she could meet them if at all possible. And meet them she did. This is an account of our day, the day in which I woke up at 4:30 A.M. and drove two pre-teen girls almost 5 hours on a Saturday. And yes, I really do want a cookie.

Jacqueline Woodson was the keynote speaker. I didn’t hear a lot of what she said because the event far surpassed capacity and was standing room only, but you can find awesome quotes as people tweeted the day at #TweensRead14. There are also lots of great pics there. It is my understanding that there were over 1,600 people pre-registered, most of them kids ages 10 to 14. The halls were flooded with young, enthusiastic readers – at times almost impassable. It was a glorious sight to behold. [Read more…]

Book Review: Revenge of the Flower Girls by Jennifer Ziegler

As many of you know, I took The Tween to ALA Annual recently and we had an amazing experience, in large part thanks to Scholastic. While there, she became passionate about wanting to read a book called REVENGE OF THE FLOWER GIRLS by Jennifer Ziegler. This past week, Jennifer Ziegler contacted me and she sent The Tween a copy of the book and wrote her a little letter. The Tween, of course was delighted and sat down immediately to read it. Today she is going to share with you her thoughts about the book. Then, at the end of this post, we have a little something we would like to do and we need your help.

Publisher’s Book Description:

In this middle-grade Bridesmaids, hilarity ensues as triplets have to stop a wedding!

One bride. Two boys. Three flower girls who won’t forever hold their peace. What could go wrong with this wedding? Everything!

The Brewster triplets, Dawn, Darby, and Delaney, would usually spend their summer eating ice cream, playing with their dog, and reading about the US Presidents. But this year they’re stuck planning their big sister Lily’s wedding. Lily used to date Alex, who was fun and nice and played trivia games with the triplets, and no one’s quite sure why they broke up. Burton, Lily’s groom-to-be, is not nice or fun, and he looks like an armadillo.

The triplets can’t stand to see Lily marry someone who’s completely wrong for her, so it’s up to them to stop the wedding before anyone says “I do!” The flower girls will stop at nothing to delay Lily’s big day, but will sprinklers, a photo slideshow, a muddy dog, and some unexpected allies be enough to prevent their big sister – and the whole Brewster family – from living unhappily ever after?

The Tween’s Thoughts: 

I really liked this book because it was very funny. I also liked how the girls were trying to stand up for their sister because they thought someone else was better for their sister, that the guy she was going to marry was wrong for her. I really liked the characters. I liked Lily who was supposed to get married to Burton; she was friendly and tried to think positive, and she was good to her little sisters. And I really liked Darby because she was quiet but knew how to help; she kind of reminded me of myself. Dawn, who is one of the triplets, had a really bad temper. I really liked Alex; he was nice and spent time with the triplets in a way that showed he cared about them. Burton’s mom was really controlling and kept calling the triplets “barbarians”. Burton was allergic to a lot of things and my little sister is allergic to 13 foods so I felt kind of bad for him because having allergies can really change the way you have to live your life. Plus his mother was pressuring him so much and he didn’t really have control over himself.

The story takes place in Texas! But Lily cried because she was going to have to move away after marrying Burton, which she really didn’t want. I thought it was really wrong that she had to change so much just to try and fit his needs. It was really sad because she was letting this man control her and she wasn’t really happy with it.

I really recommend book. I think it has some great life lessons about being true to yourself and not letting other people control you. Some parts were really sad and made me want to cry because I could relate to them. And in some parts, it was really very funny. This is now my second favorite book.

And Now a Word from the Librarian Mom:

This past week The Tween received letters from both Natalie Lloyd and Jennifer Ziegler. And for a variety of reasons, we ended up with two copies each of both A SNICKER OF MAGIC and REVENGE OF THE FLOWER GIRLS. These books were given to us from the kindness of others who reached out to my daughter and it truly touched us both. So we want to pay it forward as they say and send a set of the books on to some other pre-teen girl (or boy). My daughter is a huge fan of these books, she talks about them to me all the time and she really recommends them. We would appreciate your helping us send this set to another girl(or boy): Please leave us a little comment letting us know the first initial/name (please no last names) of someone you think would love these books and a way to get in contact with you. On this upcoming Saturday, The Tween will put all the names in a hat and draw one out. We’ll then contact that person for the mailing information and send the books on so that she can share her love of these books with one of her peers. Sadly, postage is super expensive, so U.S. residents only please (and I’m so sorry!). I know that many of you work with kids who maybe don’t own any books of their own, or maybe a kid who is struggling with moving, or making friends, or whatever. Maybe getting a package in the mail (or hand delivered by you) is just what they need. It certainly made my Tween’s day.

And again, thank you so much to Natalie Lloyd, Jennifer Ziegler, and everyone at Scholastic (especially Tracy!). Seriously, this mom just really thanks you.