> SOMETHING TO READ
Introducing -- Sasha Abramowitz by Sue Halpern (Farrar Straus Giroux, $17).
In her first book for young readers, Halpern creates such a lovable heroine, we have to hope she will write more books about 11-year-old Sasha Marie Curie Abramowitz, a smart, funny, friendly girl with a heart of gold.
Sasha is the daughter of two college professors. The family lives in a college residence at Krieger College. Sasha's older brother Danny has Tourette's syndrome and lives at a special boarding school. Her friend comes up with the idea of starting a detective agency called Drew Hardy (after Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys), so imagine Sasha's surprise when a real person named Drew Hardy appears on the scene. He's a college student, star baseball player and master of card tricks. When he almost dies after he's hit with a pitch at a baseball game, Sasha stuns his doctors by diagnosing his problem. Since he is adopted and may someday need a bone marrow transplant, Halpern seems to leave the door open for a sequel since Sasha has decided to search for Andrew's birth mother.
-- Jean Westmoore
> SOMETHING TO MAKE
Here's a last-minute idea for a gift anyone will like. Make an ordinary candle sparkle with this project.
Short pillar candle (about 3 inches) in solid color
Glitter in same color
Glitter glue in same color; paintbrush
Paper plate with rim
Pour glitter into paper plate. Paint sides of candle with glitter glue. Roll candle in glitter to add even more sparkle. Place in candle holder. Let dry.
> MORE FROM NARNIA
Looking for something to read over winter break? If you've already read C.S. Lewis' "The Chronicles of Narnia" and would like to find other books you like as much, the Young Adult Library Services Association has come up with a list of books for teens and tweens:
"Tithe: A Modern Faerie Tale" by Holly Black
"Valiant: A Modern Tale of Faerie" by Holly Black
"Faerie Wars" and "The Purple Emperor" by Herbie Brennan
"Inkheart" and "Inkspell" by Cornelia Funke
"Phantom Tollbooth" by Norton Juster
"Blue Sword" and "The Hero and the Crown" by Robin McKinley