Today's Best Book Deals for Your Homeschool
(Prices are correct as of the time of writing, but y'all know sales move fast — check before you click the buy button! These are Amazon links — read more about how we use affiliate links to help support some of the costs of the HSL blog here.)
George is $3.99. “While George has no doubt she's a girl, her family relates to her as they always have: as a boy. George hopes that if she can secure the role of Charlotte in her class's upcoming production of Charlotte's Web, her mom will finally see her as a girl and be able to come to terms with the fact that George is transgender. With the help of her closest ally, Kelly, George attempts to get the rest of the world to accept her as she is,” says School Library Journal.
Still on sale
The Lottery and Other Stories is $2.99. I never met a Shirley Jackson story I didn’t like — even the ones that aren’t my faves are always interesting — but this is a particularly nice collection, including “Pillar of Salt,” “The Daemon Lover,” and “Trial by Combat” as well as the fantastic titular story.
Corsets and Codpieces: A History of Outrageous Fashion, from Roman Times to the Modern Era is $1.99. If you’re studying European history with a fashion enthusiast, you’ll want to have this book, which is an often funny and always fascinating review of fashion from the middle ages to Christian Dior.
The Joy Luck Club is $1.99. This gorgeous multi-generational novel traces the stories of four modern California women and their Chinese immigrant novel in lyrical, lingering prose. Publishers Weekly said, “Intensely poetic, startlingly imaginative and moving, this remarkable book will speak to many women, mothers and grown daughters, about the persistent tensions and powerful bonds between generations and cultures.”
Jane Steele is $1.99. Suzanne and I differ in our degree of love for this one, but we agree that the mash-up of Jane Eyre and Dexter is brilliant in this murderous take on the classic. Reader, I murdered him, indeed.
The Farwalker’s Quest is $3.99. Why isn’t this middle grades fantasy more popular? Set in a futuristic, post-technology world, the story sends friends Ariel and Zeke on a quest to find the source of an ancient telling-dart, which, of course, also becomes a quest to discover who they really are.
Sunshine is $1.99. If you, like me, have a sweet spot for vampire stories with plucky heroines, you will appreciate this totally YA novel about a baker in a post-apocalyptic world who harnesses her own power to fend off the vampiric threat to her hometown.
Strange Practice is $2.99. My daughter recommends this twist on traditional monster literature: Dr. Greta Helsing treats all kinds of undead ailments, from entropy in mummies to vocal strain in banshees. It’s an abnormally normal life — until a group of murderous monks start killing London’s living and dead inhabitants, and Greta may be the only one who can stop them.
Paper Girls (Vol. 1) is $3.99. Suzanne is such a fan of this graphic novel that it made her best of 2017 list: “For older YA readers (and fans of Stranger Things), Paper Girls is a fantastic time-traveling alien-invasion adventure set in the 80s.”
The Night Gardener is $2.99 and a great Halloween readaloud. From our review: “This is a terrific middle grades take on classic Gothic literature, complete with a spooky old house, a deliciously creepy ghost, and a slow nightmarish unfolding. Auxier has a deft lyrical voice that echoes classic scary tales like Rebecca and The Woman in White, but the story has a steady action pacing that will appeal to tween readers. Kids will identify with Kip, who really wishes he could just be like everybody else, and Molly, who’s taken on adult responsibilities that are really too big for her to face alone. There’s plenty of suspense and drama, but it winds up with a satisfyingly safe and happy ending for pretty much everyone the reader has gotten fond of over the course of the book.”
Cosmos is $2.99. If you love the series (and who doesn’t?), you’ll love Sagan’s book, which explores astronomy and history through the lens of the human experience. Even in the places where it’s aged a bit, it’s lovely, lyrical, and insightful.
The Clockwork Scarab is $0.60. Bram Stoker’s sis teams up with Sherlock Holmes’s niece to solve mysteries in a steampunky Victorian London. In this first book in the series, the duo suspects a secret society based on Egyptology may be behind the disappearance of two society girls. I think this is one of the most fun middle grades mystery series I’ve discovered in recent years.
The Game of Silence is $2.74. Shelli loves this series about an Ojibwe girl navigating changes during U.S. westward migration: “The book opens with Omakayas standing on the shore of her home, an island in Lake Superior. In the far distance, she sees strange people approaching. Once they arrive, her family finds that these people are Anishinabeg people too. (We call them the Ojibwe or Chippewa people now.) They are haggard, hungry, and some of them have lost members of their family. Among them is a baby boy who has lost his parents, and now he becomes Omakayas’s new baby brother. These people are refugees who have been pushed out of their homes by the chimookomanag, or white people, and as the story unfolds, Omakayas’s family realizes that they, too, must leave their homes.”
The Iron King is $1.99. Lately I’ve been recommending Julie Kagawa to people who want something fantastic to follow up the Percy Jackson series. Like Percy, Meghan has her world upended when she discovers — on the 16th birthday — that she’s the daughter of a mortal mother and a faery king father. In this first book, Meghan discovers the truth about herself when she ventures in the dangerous world of faery to find her little brother, who’s been swapped for a changeling.
Coraline The Graphic Novel is $1.99. If you are in the market for a spooky Halloween graphic novel, Gaiman’s now-classic about a girl who discovers another — darker — world behind a secret door in her new apartment is hard to beat.
Nightmares! is $2.99. Just in time for Halloween, this just-scary-enough middle grades story pits a group of kids against their biggest fears as nightmares start to invade the everyday world.
Howl’s Moving Castle is $3.99. Sometimes a curse can be just what you needed, as Sophie discovers in this delightful fantasy about a hat maker's daughter who's cursed to premature old age by the Witch of the Waste. To break the curse, Sophie will need to team up with the mysterious wizard Howl, who happens to be stuck under a curse of his own — but first, she'll have to get to his castle, which has a habit of wandering around. I love this as a readaloud, on its own, or (of course) a companion piece to the equally wonderful (though often quite different) movie adaptation.