The Valedictorian and I’m not from Neptune are about highly gifted students facing the challenges of school life: how to balance the drive to succeed, negative peer labeling, with a “normal” teenager’s life. His Date for the Dance was his Science Project is another school story about a science “nerd” who surprises everyone.
Gridiron Hero, Freshman Flash, Running Against the Wind, Outside In, Harly Weaver and the Race Across America, Strap Bar are sports-oriented novels about talented children, while The Flight of the Cliff Bird is the story of an ancient Native American girl whose running ability saves her village.
The Lera Lexicon consists of fantasy novels about a gifted girl who has to battle against gender discrimination in a magical kingdom. The space-age Kipton Chronicles is a wonderful 18-book series about a highly gifted girl meeting the challenges and solving a series of mysteries that occur in an Earth colony on the planet Mars.
Robert Black’s novels venture into the supernatural with math puzzles that have to be solved by Lennie Miller, a gifted girl who has been identified for her ability with practical math by mysterious creatures from other worlds. His Mathematical Nights series consists of Night of the Paranormal Patterns and Night of the Frightening Fractions and Night of the Eerie Equations.
Many of the gifted and talented children are portrayed in historical settings and are depicted using their gifts, persistence, and creativity to solve the problems they faced. Julietta is a gifted girl in France 1283 who wishes to learn about medicine, one of the many exclusively male areas in her world. Almost 500 years later young Jeremy—a sensitive and gifted boy—of The Shot Not Heard Around the World has an easier time when he participates in the first battle of the American Revolution and finds that he does not have the stomach to kill a British soldier but would rather help the wounded.
Key to Honor and The Price of Command are two extraordinary novels following the adventures of a gifted boy—Nate Lawson—as he learns the hard lessons of leadership and surviving in a hierarchical organization as a midshipman and then a young officer in the American navy in the War of 1812. Sailing ships were much more the province of gifted boys in the pre-industrial world, and we are able to follow Jeremy Slate onboard a pirate ship in Sail to Caribee and the uneducated but clearly gifted young man who is the protagonist in Surviving Erebus.
Not all the gifted people we meet in the novels are fictional. In Taking Control we meet Alexander the Great as a gifted boy and watch him grow into one of the most extraordinary leaders the world has ever known. Joan of Arc was herself an extraordinarily gifted leader whom we meet in Girl at Arms. We encounter the incredibly gifted and talented young William Shakespeare in Runaway Will and A Will of Her Own. Through the eyes of the highly gifted Gaspar Jovellanos we experience the Spanish Enlightenment in Through Goya’s Eyes. In Finding her Way a gifted and talented girl finds herself living next to Henry David Thoreau as he spends time living at Walden Pond.