Monday, November 7, 2011

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday: Spells & Sleeping Bags

Today’s pick: 

Spells & Sleeping Bags by Sarah Mlynowski

Published by Random House, 2007

As Rachel heads off to summer camp, her magical powers are starting to kick in, but they’re a little out of control. As if that wasn’t challenging enough, she has more problems: getting the attention of the boy she likes, trying to help her little sister be less socially-inept, dealing with a girl who seems to hate her and learning to swim.

My Take:
The tone of this book promised a fun, girly story with a sprinkle of magic and that’s exactly what it turned out to be. One of the strengths of this novel is the way the author writes dialogue. The characters really come alive through their conversations. There is minimal description here, just what is needed, allowing the story to move along at a good pace. Although it’s categorized as a teen novel (there’s a lot of talk about kissing), I’d say it’s more “tween” and definitely of interest to 12- and 13- year old girls who are thinking about first crushes, first kisses, making friends, fitting in and other middle school issues. Plus, it has that magical element to add to the fun.

Other Info:
This book is part of a series called, Magic in Manhattan. Nickelodeon has optioned the rights to the series for a television movie. Other books in the series include:

Bras & Broomsticks
Frogs & French Kisses

Parties & Potions

Other books by this author include:

How to Be Bad (YA)
Gimme A Call (YA)

Ten Things We Did (And Probably Shouldn’t Have) - YA

Me vs. Me - Chick-Lit, adult
Milkrun - Chick-Lit, adult


  1. Sounds very cute! I've heard of Bras and Broomsticks. :)

  2. The problem with all these wonderful reviews is that they make me want to read the books - and i already have so many books to read I won't be finished with them until 2050 :)

  3. I've have to check this out, I need a lesson on MG dialogue. Plus my niece would love this. Great pick.

  4. This is such a wonderful series...thanks for reminding me of it! Hope to see it as a movie, too

  5. I haven't read this one yet but I've read one of the author's previous books and loved it. So I'm hoping I'll enjoy this one as well.


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