Spectacled Owl Painting by DJ Geribo
"Spectacled Owl" Painting by DJ Geribo

Hoot by Carl Hiaasen I love reading children's books (no surprise there, I guess) and add them into my book reading list as often as possible. I just finished a really good story, by Carl Hiaasen, called "Hoot". I've been especially interested in reading some of the prize winning novels and found out that his book "Hoot" was a Newbery Honor winner in 2002.

I find that no matter what I read, I can usually find something useful that will help me in my writing. Although I already knew this and have incorporated it into my own writing, Carl's stories (I've read two of his children's books so far) are based in his homestate of Florida. What this tells us is that we need to write about what we know.

With that said, although I agree with this and know this to be true, sometime ago I started a story about a boy who lives in Russia. Now, since I've never been to Russia, this is going to be a little difficult for me to write, which is why I haven't gotten very far in the book. Writing about someplace you don't know is a little more difficult - mostly it takes research to make your story sound believable. I'm thinking that I might just change my location in this book to the USA, some place I'm a little more familiar with. That could be the main glitch that has kept me from moving forward with this story.

But as for "Hoot", it is an engaging story, one that you will want to continue reading from chapter to chapter. I also loved the environmental focus (this is found also in the other Hiaasen book that I read, "Flush"). It was a believable scenario and one that could definitely happen. There are several heroes in the story, male and female, and they work together on a project that is worth fighting for, risking trouble from the cops, parents, and a large corporation.

I give Hoot 5 out of 5 Stars *****

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