July 27, 2009

Trophy Kid, or How I was Adopted by the Rich and Famous by Steve Atinsky

We have all heard about Brad and Angelina's adoptions. Famous Hollywood celebrities have a habit of gaining publicity by adopting a foreign under-privileged child. Imagine what it might be like to BE one of those children. That is the premise of Trophy Kid...
At three years old, Josef is orphaned when his parents are killed during the civil war in Croatia. Robert Francis and Greta Powell, Hollywood super-stars step in and out bid all others to adopt Josef, or Joe. Fast-forward, and Joe is now 13, and given the task of writing a book about his experience, with the help of Tom, a writer that never gets credit for his work. As Joe and Tom discuss Joe's past, several questions come up. Are Greta and Robert self-serving ego maniacs? Has their over-protection been hiding the truth? Is Robert's father really alive? Get a peek at the Hollywood lifestyle as Joe searches for the answers, and learns what family really is. Great for reluctant readers.
Reed Reads Score 3.5

Gold Rush Kid by Mary Waldorf

At the height of the Alaskan Gold Rush, twelve-year-old Billy’s father has set off to the Klondike to make it rich. After the sudden death of their mother, Billy and his 15 year old sister Edna are left alone. Faced with being sent off to relatives, they decide to head for gold country and search for their father. The story unfolds as a fantastic adventure where children are thrust into the tough and difficult life of a gold miner. The pair face hardships, friendship, sibling rivalry and grief, while learning that family is what will ultimately help them survive. Provides rich details of the life of the Alaskan gold miner in the 1890s. Excellent for discussing families, grief, and Alaskan gold rush history.
Reed Reads Score: 4