Summary: Moxy’s back, and ready (kind of, sort of) for her big piano recital!
In this hilarious third installment about everyone’s favorite ’tween procrastinator, Moxy Maxwell is set to make her Piano Debut, playing a duet of “Heart and Soul” with her little sister, Pansy. It’s too bad she has no time to practice. Between costume fittings, trying on her crown, warming up her voice, and putting on her stage makeup, Moxy can’t possibly worry about the actual performance. But soon it’s upon her, and Moxy feels something she’s only felt once before in her entire life: nervous! She’s not sure she can go on. Of course, Moxy is Moxy and she rises to the occasion brilliantly. -- Schwartz & Wade
Last year, Booking Daughter discovered the Moxy Maxwell books. She read both MOXY MAXWELL DOES NOT LOVE STUART LITTLE and MOXY MAXWELL DOES NOT LOVE WRITING THANK-YOU NOTES; and she thought they were both pretty good books. So when we received an ARC of the latest Moxy Maxwell book MOXY MAXWELL DOES NOT LOVE PRACTICING THE PIANO (BUT SHE DOES LOVE BEING IN RECITALS) by Peggy Gifford, she was very excited and read the book in one sitting (but that's not unusual for her.) As a parent, I could really appreciate that the book was a quick and engaging read; and I think even reluctant readers are going to like it.
MOXY MAXWELL DOES NOT LOVE PRACTICING THE PIANO is my first experience with Moxy Maxwell; and I just loved this book! It received a Starred Review from Kirkus Reviews, July 1, 2009; and I couldn't agree more with this praise. I thought this story and characters were cute and absolutely hilarious too. I definitely can see how middle grade girls (and some boys too) are going to love reading about Moxy and her antics.
Moxy is a fantastic character for a number of reasons. I loved that she was unpredictable and I thought so many of her actions were too funny (unless I was her mother, of course.) I also thought the supporting characters were terrific -- from Moxy's aunt, to her grandmother, to her parents. There is no doubt that the characters in this book are entertaining and memorable. I can see how kids will definitely want more of Moxy and her family after reading one book. In fact, I'd like to go back and read the other books in the series. I think that the Moxy Maxwell books are destined to become a wonderful series for middle-grade readers!
The format of this book is another thing that I really liked. The 175ish page book is made up of 85 very brief chapters. Some of the chapters were just a few words! Kids (and grown ups alike) will find that they can't stop reading this book -- you know... just one more chapter. I also liked that there were photographs (by Valorie Fisher) in this book. I thought they totally complemented the story; and since most of the pictures were "taken" by Moxy's twin brother Mark, they were just what you'd expect from a 10 year old kid. Some were blurry and some were crooked but they all made me laugh!
Here are Booking Daughter's thoughts:
I was happy to hear that there was a new Moxy Maxwell book, and I was very excited to read it. I liked this book, but I liked the first book in the series a little bit more. One thing I enjoyed about this book was that Moxy played the piano because I play it too. I could understand Moxy not wanting to practice. I thought Moxy was hilarious and the ending of the book surprised me based on Moxy's attitude and personality. I recommend this book!
I received an ARC as well as a hardcover copy of this book from the publisher, and I'd love to pass one on to you! If you would like to win the hardcover version of MOXY MAXWELL DOES NOT LOVE PRACTICING THE PIANO, just leave a comment with a valid e-mail address telling me something that you didn't like to do when you were a kid. To double or triple your chances, you can blog and/or tweet about this giveaway with a link back to this post. The contest will be open until Tuesday, September 23rd at 11:59 p.m. EST, and you must have a U.S. or Canada mailing addresses to enter. I will notify the winner the following day. Good Luck!