Reading Level: Grades 7-9
The Ng family has a lot of status. Everyone in the family has at least one A or B level Talent (as rated by BERM - the Bureau of Extra-Sensory Regulation and Management.) Everyone except Natalie, the family disappointment. She has one D level Talent...she speaks and understands cat. Natalie does her best to keep classmates from learning of her embarrassing talent, only using it to talk to the family cat in the privacy of her bedroom.
And that's how things remain until the day her friends Oscar and Melly shows her a video of a celebrity blogger being attacked by her own cat. The cat is screaming, " Help me! Hellllpppme! Kill the imposter!"
Against her better judgement, Natalie allows her star-struck friends to drag her into a mystery that involves Chicago, a remake of Ferris Bueller's Day Off and one very cranky pink cat.
Books by Kimberly Pauley
Other humorous fantasy novels featuring harried heroines include:
Fairy Bad Day by Amanda Ashby
Don't Expect Magic by Kathy McCullough and
Devilish by Maureen Johnson
Other stories of humans who can talk to animals include:
What the Dog Said by Randi Reisfeld
The Exceptionals by Erin Cashman
The Boy Who Spoke Dog by Morgan Clay and
Wild Magic by Tamora Pierce
Reading Level: Grades 6 - 9
Before the war life spans have been extended to up to 200 years. In order to ensure that the new extreme elderly could support themselves the government made it illegal for anyone under the age of 19 to hold a job. When the spore bombs were launched by the enemy during the war, only children and the elderly had been vaccinated against this man-made plague. As a result the only people left alive in the United States are the Starters (children under 19) and the Enders (adults over 65). Callie and her brother are among the unlucky children who had no living grandparents and are forced to live illegally on the street trying to avoid being swept up into one of the horrible forced labor camps for unclaimed minors. Then Callie hears about The Body Bank, where Enders pay huge fees to possess a Starter's body for a few hours or more via computer chips implanted in the Starter's brain. Callie thinks this is her way out. She only has to rent her body three times and then the big payoff will come. But can it really be that easy?