AUNT CRYSTAL & THE VOWEL TOWELS by Sandy Ryerse
GENRE: Early-Middle Grade Fiction
RELEASE DATE: March 26, 2023
The eight-year-old life is looking easy-peasy until Todd’s quirky Aunt Crystal gives him a birthday present way blander than plain oatmeal: six vowel-themed bath towels. Who wants to think about spelling in the shower? But when elf-sized elephants, umbrella-carrying unicorns, and a host of other vowel-inspired guests join him each time he uses a towel, Todd realizes learning about AEIOU & sometimes Y could have been his Aunt’s sneaky plan all along.Those bland vowel towels are also undeniably, outrageously, and indescribably the best birthday present ever!
ON THE MORNING AFTER the best birthday party ever in the whole wide world, I hugged my blankets really really tight, rolled over, and blinked crusty sleep from my eyes.
To sleep in or not sleep in? Ahhhhh, that was the question. Being eight was going to be easy-peasy.
While I decided whether to get up, I spied my Maximus Grossness Science Lab kit I got for my birthday. It sat on my desk, all oozy and gross in front of my new Commander Hawk dry-erase board.
Hey, Mom left me a note on the board.
Good morning, Punkinhead!
Remember, Aunt Crystal arrives today.
Don’t forget to thank her for the gift.
Yay! One more birthday gift! Her gifts were always totally awesome!
Don’t forget to thank her for the gift.
Todd, please work on no more exaggerating.
After last week’s exaggeration flop (it wasn’t MY fault the dog across the street looked exactly like a bear), I guessed it really was time to make a change.
A-hunka-hunka-hunka. A-hunka-hunka-hunka, sputter, sputter, hisssss. Only one car in the whole wide world made that noise. I yanked my very favorite hockey jersey – ten sizes too small – over my head and opened my bedroom curtains. I was right. Aunt Crystal’s lime green 1957 VW Beetle was parked in our driveway.
Mom, Dad, and my six-year-old sister, Taryn, stampeded like a hundred buffalo to open the front door, but I waited in my room. I finished getting dressed. No sense in looking too eager for my birthday present. Aunt Crystal always brought my gift one day late. And my gift was always crazy-weird, totally unexpected, and soooooo perfect. Today it looked like I might have hit the mega jackpot because she juggled five or six bright green gift bags stuffed with tons and tons of that tissue stuff.
“I’m here!’’ Aunt Crystal called as she gathered her things and hip-checked the car door closed. She caught her really, really, really long, suede vest in the door. “Oh bother. At least I didn’t lose my tail.” Aunt Crystal laughed at herself as she tugged her vest free. “Too many buttons, too many buttons.”
Sure enough, a button popped off the front of the vest and shot at least twenty-five feet across the driveway into the snow. I snickered from my bedroom window. There had to be 100 buttons on that vest. She could afford to lose a few.
Excerpted from Aunt Crystal and the Vowel Towels by Sandy Ryerse. Copyright © 2023. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Used by permission.
Sandy Ryerse‘s mission is to create everyday characters tempted to live a mediocre life and place them in fun and awkward situations where they tackle life and relationships. Her characters are faced with opportunities that cause them to run away from mediocrity, and instead to soar toward a fantastic life. This is ultimately driven by her desire to promote every child‘s potential to explore this amazing world we’ve been dropped into so that we will grow in character, experience, and knowledge. Connect with Sandy on her website.
Sandy Ryerse is offering a print copy of Aunt Crystal & the Vowel Towels to one of my readers! (US/CAN only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.) This giveaway is subject to Reading Is My SuperPower’s giveaway policies which can be found here. Enter via the Rafflecopter form below.
What about you? What makes you want to read Aunt Crystal & the Vowel Towels by Sandy Ryerse with a early/middle grade child in your life?