“The Westing Game” by Ellen Raskin 

This eccentric mystery novel for children brings a cast of diverse characters together to solve a murder while they each fight to inherit a fortune. The story twists and turns as everyone works to piece together patriotic clues in a truly American game of “I want that money.” 

“Skullduggery Pleasant” by Derek Landy 

This book is mildly disturbing in its ability to amuse the reader one minute, and then casually drop them into scenes of horrible death the next. An incredible ride, this book is just the beginning in an excellent series that constantly leaves readers longing for more. Afterall, who doesn’t want to read more stories about a wisecracking, sharp-dressing, skeleton detective? 

“Bunnicula” by Deborah and James Howe 

Lock away your vegetables, something spooky this way comes! This hilariously written story follows the journey of two household pets as they deal with terrifying implications of the newest addition to their family being a vampire bunny who dines upon unsuspecting vegetables.  

“The Fall of the Amazing Zalindas (Sherlock Holmes and the Baker Street Irregulars)” by Tracy Mack and Michael Citrin 

Written from the perspective of the group of street urchins that Sherlock Holmes was known to employ on several of his cases, the story follows the members of the Baker Street Irregulars as they investigate a murder on behalf of the great detective.  

“Stick and Whittle” by Sid Hite 

A cheesy western full of hijinks, and ending, as all westerns must, in a final dramatic shoot out with the heroes pitched against overwhelming odds. This story is a quick, easy and entertaining read that has continued to delight me throughout the years.  

“The Cardturner” by Louis Sachar  

A seemingly boring topic, this book follows Alton Richards during his bleak looking summer of junior year as he drives his great-uncle to bridge club and acts as his cardturner. This heart-warming book shows the relationships between family and friends and will spike your interest in the card game bridge.