The Problim Children is about seven children who mostly live on their own in the Swampy Woods while their parents go on expeditions for the Queen of Andorra. There is Mona, the prankster; Toot, who speaks through toots; Wendell, the reader and baker; Thea, who’s motto/mantra is “Every day is a good day for a taco”; Frida, the fox; Sal, the gardener, and Sundae, who believes that everything (including blowing up the house) is a fun game.
These children aren’t exactly what most people would consider normal. They train circus spiders to do trapeze and walk the tightrope; they ride their pig (Ichabod); they read stories to the fog to make it take the form of all kinds of fun things like a pirate ship, a princess riding a pegasus, and so on.
One day their house explodes (Mona!), so the Problims have to move into a house in Lost Cove. When they get there, they learn that their neighbor, Desdemona O’Pinion, isn’t very neighborly. In fact, she tries to send them to seven different continents! Desdemona doesn’t give up. When she can’t take the house from them, she points out that they don’t have parents with them, so they have 21 days to prove they are Problims, or find their parents. The Problims start to hear strange things about a feud, a treasure, and magic that runs in their family. Can they figure out what it all means before their 21 day time limit is up?
The Problim Children books (there are three in the series) are realistic fiction, but with fantasy and magic mixed in. A lot of Natalie Lloyd’s other books are too, like a Snicker of Magic (click to read my earlier review of this book), and The Key to Extraordinary.
The Problim Children is for 3rd-7th grade readers. This book has 285 pages, so it is in-between in length.
I give this book 4.5 out of 5 bookworms.
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