Lester’s Dreadful Sweaters

by KG Campbell

Lester is particular about everything, so when Cousin Clara comes to live with his family and begins to knit less than perfect sweaters for him to wear, he’s got an uncomfortable situation.  Honestly, the sweaters are dreadful. The first is an oversized yellow “hoodie” with purple pom-poms and extremely uneven sleeves. Lester is mortified, but his parents insist he wear it to school. Before he gets home, he has devised a method for the disposal of the sweater—but to no avail. Cousin Clara merely presents Lester with another new sweater…more dreadful than the first. As each sweater meets its demise, Lester is met with another from Clara. But there is a happy ending for Lester and Clara: a band of performing circus clowns falls in love with Clara’s creations and employs her to help costume the troupe. What a great opportunity for Clara—and what a relief for Lester! Ages 4 – 8.

 For Older Readers

A Snicker of Magic

by Natalie Lloyd

This is a story of characters and place told by an endearing and magical 12-year-old girl named Felicitysnicker-web Juniper Pickle. She and her younger sister have never stayed in one place for very long because their mother has a wandering heart. When they arrive in Midnight Gulch, Tennessee, Felicity feels things are going to change for the better. You see, Felicity has a special talent; she is a “word collector.” She is able to see words floating through the air, and this is the first time she has seen the word “home.” Felicity—with the help of her new friend, Jonah—breaks the spell hanging over the inhabitants of Midnight Gulch and heals her mother’s broken heart. This is a lyrical story that reveals the magic of friendship, the joy of helping others, and the strength of family. It works extremely well as a read aloud or a private read curled up in a quiet spot. Ages 10 – 14.

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