Fill summer with good books

THE STONEHEART (The Stoneheart Trilogy) BOOK ONE, by Charlie Fetcher, Hyperion Books for Children; ages 9-12.

Have you ever visited The Field Museum and thought about what would happen if all the creatures came to life? This book offers an answer.

Twelve-year-old George is on a school field trip at the Natural History Museum in London. After getting yelled at by his teacher, he punches a carving of a dragon. Seconds later he’s on the run for his life with a pterodactyl in pursuit.

When he turns a corner, a bronze statue of a gunner raises his gun and shoots the pterodactyl.

George has unknowingly started a new war between the spits and the taints and George’s life is in danger.

THE CALDER GAME, by Blue Balliet, Scholastic, ages 9-12; $17.99.

Calder joins his dad on a business trip to London and discovers an amazing new piece of modern art by the famous artist Alexander Calder, Calder’s namesake. When Calder goes missing, his dad calls on his friends Petra and Tommy to help. By playing the Calder game they think finding him will easy.

SIMON BLOOM, THE GRAVITY KEEPER, by Michael Reisman, Dutton Children’s Books, ages 9-12; $15.99.

Simon is an ordinary sixth-grader-except he can control the laws of physics.

One day while walking in a clearing in the woods a book, “The Teacher’s Editions of Physics,” hits him in the head. By reciting the formulas in the book he can reduce the forces of gravity and float around his room or zoom down the street as if riding an imaginary skateboard.

But the bad guys want the book so they can control the formulas.

STORM, THE INFINITY CODE, W.L. Young, Dial Books for Young Readers, ages 9-12; $16.99.

Will invents gadgets, Andrew is the computer whiz and Gaia, with her photographic memory, knows a many languages. Together they form Storm. When the threesome uncover a plot concerning a deadly world weapon, they race from England to Russia. By the end of the book the kids have not only saved the world, but more importantly they have discovered some truths about themselves.

THE CHALLENGE, by Ridley Pearson, Disney Editions, ages 9-12; $16.99

Steel is on a train to Washington, D.C., where he will be a contestant in the National Science Challenge. When he sees a woman get off the train without her briefcase, he chases after her but she refuses the case. He returns to the train and opens the case. Inside he finds something he shouldn’t have.

Sandi Pedersen is the mom of four and the Web mistress for Chicago Parent.

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