Mostly to get it off my to-do list, here are the books since last April that I read, wrote down on my book log, and can recommend for others to read. In chronological order, with no fancy formatting or recommended ages or anything. Here we go:
First Date, by Krista McGee - Christian fiction, a modern-day take on the Esther story, very clean and entertaining, about a girl chosen to be on a reality show where the US president's son will pick his senior prom date.
One Dog and His Boy, by Eva Ibbotson - fun kids' read about a rich boy who rescues dogs from a dog-rental company and treks across England with them. Pretty good.
Into the Woods: John James Audubon Lives His Dream, by Robert Burleigh, ill. by Wendell Minor with pictures from Audubon - Really nice picture book in the form of a letter from John to his father explaining why he's chosen his life path instead of something more conventional.
The False Prince, by Jennifer A. Nielsen - Even though you could see the ending coming from page 2 or 3, I enjoyed reading this book to see how that ending would happen. Three orphan boys are chosen to be trained in hopes that one of them can pass for the lost heir to the throne.
Ordinary Magic, by Caitlen Rubino-Bradway - Fun and quite good book about a girl with no magic in a society where that is abnormal.
The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom, by Christopher Healy - Really fun read that pokes fun at the fairy tale stereotypes.
Gifted Hands (movie) - very good, did show some brain surgery that grossed out my kids a little, but they still liked the rest of the movie.
A Room of My Own, by Ann Tatlock - historical novel about the daughter of a doctor in the 1930s who helps the homeless in their camp.
A Posse of Princesses, by Sherwood Smith - Quite good twist on the theme of princesses getting rescued by princes.
Breathing Room, by Marsha Hayles - Interesting and positive story of a girl with tuberculosis in the mid 1900s.
Ungifted, by Gordon Korman - A troublemaker accidentally gets put into the gifted school where he joins the robotics team and hides from the superintendent.
The Year Money Grew on Trees, by Aaron Hawkins - Very good story based on the author's experiences - a boy is offered an orchard if he will get it into shape. He and his siblings and cousins have to learn how to make the orchard produce apples. There is a fair amount of math and engineering involved and it interested all of my children.
The Floating Islands, by Rachel Neumeier - Good fantasy story with lovely writing about an island kept aloft by dragons and a girl and boy who help defend it.
46 Pages: Thomas Paine, Common Sense, and the Turning Point to Independence, by Scott Liell - Short book (for adult reading level) but very interesting.
Princess Academy: Palace of Stone, by Shannon Hale - I liked this sequel even though I wasn't sure if I would. Miri goes to the capital and finds a revolution brewing.
King Richard II, by Shakespeare - It was interesting to read this for the first time. Richard gets deposed by his nephew Bolingbroke (Henry IV). Richard wasn't a good king, but is Henry right to take the crown? And will Henry be any better? Should the nobility's loyalty be to England or the crown or their friends?
Apology, by Plato - (reread) I'd forgotten how eloquent and compelling this is. It's a defense of staying true to yourself and seeking truth rather than comfort, and a plea not to think yourself too wise.
Horse of a Different Color, by Ralph Moody - (reread) This is still my favorite book about business and honest dealings.
The Constitution Translated for Kids, by Cathy Travis - Has the actual text of the Constitution side by side with an easier-to-read version for children (and those of us who sometimes need that level of explanation).
The Phantom of the Opera, by Gaston Leroux - Pretty good, melodramatic but definitely worth reading once, if only to get the original story.
The Evolution of Thomas Hall, by Kieth Merrill - Dramatic story of a painter asked to create a Darwin mural for a museum and also a mural of Christ for a hospital, and his struggles with his own beliefs.