I almost feel like I shouldn't clutter up the blog with this stuff, and just put the books on a page all their own. Anyway...
I recommend _The Devil in the White City_ by Erik Larson and _Wicked_ by Gregory Maguire. The first is a true story about the building of the Chicago World's Fair and the second is the not so true story of life and times of the Wicked Witch of the West. I only wish that three small sections had been cut from the final editing, then I could read it to the kids! OK, maybe that's pushing it, but it really is a wonderful retelling of the Wizard of Oz from the Witch's POV.
Did I mention that I finished L'Engle's _Many Waters_? I really enjoyed that one as well, more than her other books definitely. The twins are pulled back to Noah's time.
The central library has an entire wall devoted to children's books on tape/CD. I happened to pick up one labeled for the 2004 Middle School reading list, called _The Ear, the Eye, and the Arm_ by Nancy Farmer. It took too long to listen in the car (everywhere I go around here is about 8 minutes away) so I borrowed the book and finished the story at home. A fun read set in 2194 Zimbabwe. I've picked up _The House of the Scorpion_ also by Farmer and would like to read her other works as well.