105 Ways to Give a Book

Thursday Three: Oddball Booktalks

I'm already over the idea of posting these booktalks, as evidenced by my weeklong absence. So let's knock out a few that had some oddball tricks to the hook. In the first, I howled. That shuts up a room, I'll tell you that. In the second, I used a fake mustache on a stick. Again, attention grabber. In the third, I used the ask-a-question technique, but with the twist that the third part of the question is clever. There were always a few who raised their hands, and I told the classes to hang out with those kids.

The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: The Mysterious Howling
by Maryrose Woods, illustrated by Jon Klassen

Balzar & Bray, 2010
The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: The Mysterious HowlingAwhooooooooo! That was the noise that Penelope heard as she was being interviewed to be governess to three children in a very grand house called Ashton Place. Oddly the mistress of the house was very eager to hire Penelope, even though she had yet to meet the children. Awhooooooo! Penelope heard as she followed the sound to the barn, expecting to find dogs in some distress. Awhoooooo! She heard just before she opened the door, and as her eyes adjusted to the darkness within she saw three children, dirty with tangled hair and wide eyes. Three children who had been raised by wolves, and who were now in her care. Other young ladies might have run away, but Penelope had the training of the Swanburne Academy for Poor Bright Females, a determined state of mind, and a very, very fortunate love of animals. Can Penelope help The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place?

Fake Mustache
by Tom Angleberger

Amulet Books, 2012
Fake MustacheI couldn’t fool you with this mustache into believing that I am someone else, but that’s exactly what happens when Lenny’s friend Casper buys a fake mustache, specifically the Heidelberg Handlebar Number Seven. Along with a specially fitted suit for a man-about-town, he is fooling everyone into believing he is someone else, someone important. Lenny is the only one who can see the seventh grader behind the mustache and the only one who can keep Casper from taking over – not only the little town of Hairsprinkle – but the entire country. Yes, it's that wacky. Tom Angleberger, the author of the Origami Yoda books, has given us a funny, wild story in Fake Mustache: or How Jodie O’Rodeo and her Wonder Horse (and some nerdy kid) Saved the U.S. Presidential Election from a Mad Genius Criminal Mastermind.

by Mark Fearing, illustrated by Tim Rummel

Chronicle Books, 2012
Earthling!Raise your hand if you’ve been the new kid at school? Moved in from another state? From another country? How about from another planet? Well, Bud has moved to New Mexico with his dad and he's waiting for the bus on the first day of school. It's early in the morning, and he thinks he sees it leave, but no, it pulls up and he steps on and the bus takes off. I mean, really takes off into space. Instead of Abraham Lincoln Elementary School, Bud finds himself on the way to Cosmos Academy on the other side of the galaxy. This it not the plan. Saving the life of a kid on the bus wins him a friend, and he needs one after finding out that his planet – our planet – is the most feared and despised in the universe! He has to fit in at this odd school of aliens or be discovered as an Earthling! His new friend Gort warns that he could get suspended or expelled – um, meaning “suspension for eternity in molecular binding gel or being expelled into deep place to die” – but Bud needs to get back to Earth. But how? Pick up this colorful graphic novel that’s funny and out of this world.

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S.M. Olson said...

Three great books. I am definitely going to have to check out the first one - what an interesting premise for a novel! Thanks for the great recommendations.

Sondy said...

Didn't I have that idea (starting with a howl) at the Booktalk training? But I actually didn't come up with a good way to follow up, and didn't end up booktalking it! :) Splendidly done!