The full title of this book is Horton Halfpott; or, The Fiendish Mystery of Smugwick Manor; or, The Loosening of M'Lady Luggertuck's Corset (Lexile: 880; Interest Level: Grades 3-6). In it Tom Angleberger takes the reader into the crazy life of one of the servants of Smugwick Manor, Horton Halfpott. Horton is a kitchen boy who makes one penny a week being ordered around by the cranky head cook of the Luggertuck Family.
The crazy adventures begin when M'Lady Luggertuck asks for her corset (a type of lady's undergarment that makes her seem skinnier than she is) to be a little looser. Because of that (or so it is claimed), everything else at the manor seems a little less "tight," and strange things start happening, including the theft of the valuable Lump. Horton, as much as he tries to follow all of the rules, ends up right in the thick of the mess that happens as a result, including run-ins with pirates, beautiful girls, pickle eclairs, and kidnapping plots!
The language in this book may make it a harder read for third graders, but the ones who listened while we read it aloud seem to really like it! It is a really funny book with lots of twists in the plot, and it will certainly be enjoyed by those who can read it! (224 p.)
One of the reasons I became an elementary school librarian is so I can read children's books.