Friday, February 10, 2023

Today's read... Aven Green Music Machine by Dusti Bowling

Today's read is the third in a chapter book series, which I've actually been enjoying since book one. This main character came from the best-seller, Life of a Cactus by Dusti Bowling. So, fans of that book will recognize Aven Green. It's always fun to see what she's up to next, so I'm just going to head on in and take a peek.

Aven Green #3
by Dusti Bowling
Illustrated by Gina Perry
Union Square Kids
Chapter Book Contemporary
128 pages
ages 6 to 10

Aven Green, the remarkable heroine of Dusti Bowling’s Life of a Cactus series, marches to her own beat in this hilarious, upbeat, and unforgettable chapter book. 
“Bowling’s beloved “Life of a Cactus” protagonist returns in a new series of chapter books that capture her life as third grader. . . . Young readers will laugh aloud at Aven’s funny reactions . . . [and] they will be intrigued by the practical skills she has perfected. . . . This chapter book companion to Bowling’s well-loved middle-grade series is a recommended purchase.”—School Library Journal (Starred review)
Third-grader Aven Green is a real professional musician! She just needs to choose what instrument to play. When she decides to try the piano, Aven is disappointed when she can’t master Mozart in one whole day. To pick up Aven’s beat, her parents take her for a four-hour drive to see someone just like her play the guitar. With new inspiration and a special gift from her great-grandma, Aven is ready to take on the school talent show. Will she be ready in time? Or will she blow her big chance?



Aven Green is as spunky and determined as ever as she decides it's time to become a professional musician and perform in the talent show.

When the teacher announces the up-coming talent show, Aven is thrilled. She just had the idea to become a professional musician a few days before, and now, she's getting her chance. So, she announces her musical talent to the class. Now, she'll need to figure out which instrument she enjoys, learn to play one of Mozart's songs on it, and impress everyone with her amazing skills...and all of that in one week. But things might not be quite as easy as she hopes.

This is written from Aven's point of view and that as if she's telling her story directly to the reader. Since Aven is such an energetic girl with tons of personality, this makes it no problem to connect with her and be drawn in. The classroom comes across with a slightly humorous, positive, and natural flow. That doesn't mean everything is perfect, though. Her friends and classmates have their own quirks and rough edges, which make that end much more interesting. Readers will also identify with the various situations she finds herself.

One of my favorite aspects of this series is how the author presents Aven. While she faces obvious challenges due to her lack of arms, this is never dwelled upon. It's stated and explored in so far that it affects her life, but the stories go beyond that and aren't built on this aspect. Aven faces the same challenges as every child does and has to deal with many of the same issues. In this book, she learns what really sticks behind mastering a skill such as playing a musical instrument. She holds the same dreams as many kids her age, goes through frustration and disappointment, and has to learn how to face what she's told others when it doesn't portray the truth. In other words, this is a book all readers of that age group can identify with to some point.

The illustrations sprinkled in the pages make this a fun chapter book, which doesn't bog down. The font is easy to read, the chapters clearly marked, and the vocabulary introduces new words but doesn't expect too much from readers, either. 

I can't wait to see what Aven Green is up to next. 

No comments: