Books offer reading fun for summer

KINGDOM KEEPERS V: Shell Game. By Ridley Pearson. For ages 10-13. Hyperion Books. 560 pages. $17.99.

Action, suspense and Disney magic combine for a thrill-a-minute story that fans won’t want to put down until the last page. The Kingdom Keepers are in high school now, and the dangers for them, their families and Disney as we know it continue to grow. Add to that teenage hormones, Disney cruise ships, magic and an ever-twisting mystery and you have the perfect book for summer vacation. Unless you have an overactive imagination and you are vacationing at one of the Disney properties.

What’s good: Adventure, character development and great suspense.

What’s bad: The books add a serious darkness to Disney magic.

PRISCILLA THE GREAT. By Sybil Nelson. For ages 10-13. CreateSpace. 312 pages. $12.99.

At some point, every kid in middle school feels like he is different from everyone else. And most wish they had super powers to help them get through the day. Priscilla falls into both categories. She does have super powers, and she is different. Those two points allow middle-grade readers to connect with this hero-in-the-making. It doesn’t matter if you are a boy or a girl, “Priscilla the Great” has enough action to keep you glued to the pages and character development to tug at your heart. Invisible jets and explosions for boys; BFFs and a first kiss for girls; shady scientific experiments, bad guys and super humans for all. It’s sure-fire entertainment.

What’s good: You already can get the sequel and some short stories.

What’s bad: The ending felt a little too much like a set-up for the next book rather than a conclusion to the first book.

McGeath Freeman reviews children’s books for Lowcountry Parent magazine. To see previous reviews, go to