Sophie Washington: Queen of the Bee by Tonya Duncan Ellis

Grade Level: 2 – 6

Reading Age: 8 – 12 years

Publisher: Page Turner Publishing; Illustrated edition 

Publication Date: November 28, 2018

In this middle grade chapter book, 10 year old Sophie from Texas has no desire to be on the school spelling bee until she is challenged by a classmate named Nathan. Her parents encourage Sophie to excel. Sophie shows that focusing on a goal then working to achieve that goal can bring desired results. In addition to the spelling bee, readers learn about Sophie’s life which includes a loving family, a sometimes annoying little brother, and events at her private school but all is not perfect. At times Sophie finds herself having to face uncomfortable situations that she perceives will be horrible however once the event occurs she manages.

The Getaway (Diary of a Wimpy Kid Book 12) by author/illustrator Jeff Kinney

Reading Level: 8 – 12 years

Publisher: Harry N. Abrams

Publication Date: November 7, 2017

In this chapter book, a middle schooler named Greg Heffley is looking forward to an enjoyable Christmas at home however his parents desire to escape the busy holiday experiences so they book a trip to a tropical island for their family of five. What begins as a stress-free idea turns into a chain of stressful yet hilarious (for the reader) escapades throughout the book. My Book Eyes laughed at adults who sometimes think and act like children and children who sometimes think and act like adults. Anyone who has ever taken an airplane trip will definitely be able to relate to some of the events (flight delays, luggage mix ups, uncomfortable seats etc) encountered by the Heffleys. Once they reach their destination more adventures await this family. Illustrations and text are entertaining and provoke nonstop laughter.