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Book of the Week Archive for 2003
2006 Archive
Bread and Roses, Too by Katherine Paterson
Young Adult
Bread and Roses, Too
by Katherine Paterson
Rosa's mother is singing again, for the first time since Papa died in an accident in the mills. But instead of filling their cramped tenement apartment with Italian lullabies, Mamma is out on the streets singing union songs, and Rosa is terrified that her mother and older sister, Anna, are endangering their lives by marching against the corrupt mill owners. After all, didn't Miss Finch tell the class that the strikers are nothing but rabble-rousers;an uneducated, violent mob? Suppose Mamma and Anna are jailed or, worse, killed? What will happen to Rosa and little Ricci? When Rosa is sent to Vermont with other children to live with strangers until the strike is over, she fears she will never see her family again. Then, on the train, a boy begs her to pretend that he is her brother. Alone and far from home, she agrees to protect him . . . even though she suspects that he is hiding some terrible secret. From a beloved, award-winning author, here is a moving story based on real events surrounding an infamous 1912 strike.
Clarion 2006
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Let it Shine: Three Favorite Spirituals
Ages 4-8
Let it Shine: Three Favorite Spirituals by Ashley Bryan
With a kaleidoscope of color and cut paper, Hans Christian Anderson Award nominee and two-time Coretta Scott King Award winner Ashley Bryan celebrates three favorite spirituals: "This Little Light of Mine," "Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In," and "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands." The power of these beloved songs simply emanates through his joyous interpretations. Come, sing, and celebrate!
Atheneum (January 2007)
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River Secrets by Shannon Hale
Ages 11-14
River Secrets by Shannon Hale
Razo has no idea why he was chosen to be a soldier. He can barely swing a sword, and his brothers are forever wrestling him to the ground. Razo is sure it's out of pity that his captain asks him to join an elite mission--escorting the ambassador into Tira, Bayern's great enemy.
But when the Bayern arrive in the strange southern country, Razo discovers the first dead body. He befriends both the high and low born, people who can perhaps provide them with vital information. And Razo is the one who must embrace his own talents in order to get the Bayern soldiers home again, alive.
Newbery–Honor winner Shannon Hale returns the reader to the intrigue and magic of Bayern, first introduced in her critically acclaimed novel, The Goose Girl. Enter a world where even those with no special magical skills find in themselves something they never imagined.
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Shannon Hale received a Newbery Honor for her book Princess Academy. She is the author of The Goose Girl and Enna Burning, companion books to River Secrets. Read about the books (and an interview with Shannon Hale).

Behold the Bold Umbrellaphant and Other Poems
Ages 8-11
Behold the Bold Umbrellaphant and Other Poems by Jack Prelutzsky

What do you get when you cross . . .
A toaster with a toad?
A tuba with a baboon?
A clock with an octopus?
A hat with a chicken?
An umbrella with an elephant?

Why . . .
A Pop-up Toadster
A Tubaboon
The Clocktopus
A Hatchicken
and . . .
The Bold Umbrellaphant

And what do you get when you cross this book with a kid?

Why . . .
The Happy Kibook!
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Notes From The Midnight Driver
Young Adult
Notes From The Midnight Driver
by Jordan Donnenblick
16-year-old Alex decides to get even. His parents are separated, his father is dating his former third-grade teacher, and being 16 isn't easy, especially when it comes to girls. Instead of revenge though, Alex ends up in trouble with the law and is ordered to do community service at a senior center where he is assigned to Solomon Lewis, a "difficult" senior with a lot of gusto, advice for Alex, and a puzzling (yet colorful) Yiddish vocabulary. Eventually, the pair learn to deal with their past and each other in ways that are humorous, entertaining, and life changing.
--Scholastic 2006
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SOLD by Patricia McCormick
Young Adult
SOLD by Patricia McCormick
Lakshmi is a thirteen-year-old girl who lives with her family in a small hut in a mountain village in Nepal. Her life is made up of simple pleasures like going to school and spending time with her loving ama and baby brother. But these happy times are undercut by the desperate poverty that threatens the lives of the villagers.

Then one day, Lakshmi's father brings her to a shopkeeper in town and tells Lakshmi that she is going to go work as a maid in India so that her wages can be sent home. Glad to help support her family, Lakshmi undertakes the long journey and arrives at "Happiness House" full of hope. But she soon discovers the unthinkable truth: she has been sold into prostitution.

An old woman named Mumtaz rules the house with an iron fist. She informs Lakshmi that she is trapped there until she can pay off her family's debt. And of course, crooked Mumtaz will make sure that that never happens.

Lakshmi life becomes a nightmare from which she cannot escape. But gradually, she forms friendships that enable her to survive in this terrifying new world. Until the day comes that she has to make a decision -- one that will cause her to risk everything to for a chance to reclaim her life.

Written in spare and evocative vignettes, this powerful novel chronicles the story of one girl's struggle to maintain her sense of self against all odds.
--Hyperion 2006
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The Adventures of the Dish and the Spoon
Ages 6-9
The Adventures of the Dish and the Spoon
by Mini Grey
Mini Grey’s spin on the nursery rhyme classic “Hey diddle, diddle, the cat and the fiddle” is a love story of sorts that starts when “the dish ran away with the spoon.” In the midst of the Great Depression, Dish and Spoon become rich and famous vaudeville stars—until their taste for the high life puts them in debt to a gang of sharp and shady characters (depicted as evil knives). The cinematic presentation—with a touch of Bonnie and Clyde, a dash of “The Perils of Pauline”—proves that crime doesn’t pay and love conquers all. A visual treat with new details to discover again and again, here is absurd good fun for the whole family.
--Knopf Books for Young Readers 2006
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Crispin: At the Edge of the World
Ages 10-14
Crispin: At the Edge of the World
by Avi
The fans of one of America’s premier storytellers will have plenty to keep them reading this fall. Crispin: At the Edge of the World is the longawaited sequel to Avi’s Newbery Medal-winning book, Crispin: The Cross of Lead. In this new book, Crispin, the outcast orphan, and his friend, the red-bearded juggler and occasional spy, Bear, face mortal danger as they continue their adventures in 14th-century England. Avi sets a swift pace with a plot packed with twists and turns as Crispin and Bear seek refuge with a pagan midwife, Aude, and her silent young assistant, Troth. When Aude is murdered by villagers, Crispin, Bear, and Troth flee for their lives, first by land and then by sea, before being shipwrecked and taken prisoner in an unknown land. As Crispin struggles to understand what it means to be a man, Avi keeps the pages turning in a suspenseful tale that deftly captures the language and culture of a turbulent period in English history.
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The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing
Young Adult/Adult
The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation.
Volume One: The Pox Party.

by M.T. Anderson
It sounds like a fairy tale. He is a boy dressed in silks and white wigs and given the finest of classical educations. Raised by a group of rational philosophers known only by numbers, the boy and his mother — a princess in exile from a faraway land — are the only persons in their household assigned names. As the boy's regal mother, Cassiopeia, entertains the house scholars with her beauty and wit, young Octavian begins to question the purpose behind his guardians' fanatical studies. Only after he dares to open a forbidden door does he learn the hideous nature of their experiments — and his own chilling role in them. Set against the disquiet of Revolutionary Boston, M. T. Anderson's extraordinary novel takes place at a time when American Patriots rioted and battled to win liberty while African slaves were entreated to risk their lives for a freedom they would never claim. The first of two parts, this deeply provocative novel reimagines the past as an eerie place that has startling resonance for readers today.
--Candlewick 2006
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Visions in Poetry: The Raven
Ages 11 and Up
Visions in Poetry: The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe, Ryan Price (Illustrator)
Visions in Poetry is an exciting and unique series of classic poems illustrated by outstanding contemporary artists in stunning hardcover editions. The fifth book in the series, Edgar Allan Poe's "The Raven," delves into the hidden horrors of the human psyche. Originally published in 1845, the poem is narrated by a melancholy scholar brooding over Lenore, a woman he loved who is now lost to him. One bleak December at midnight, a raven with fiery eyes visits the scholar and perches above his chamber door. Struggling to understand the meaning of the word his winged visitant repeats - "Nevermore!" - the narrator descends by stages into madness. Illustrator Ryan Price's exquisitely grim illustrations suggest a background story shaped by the narrator's guilt, embodied in the terrifying figure of the raven. Price's drypoint technique, with its rich blacks and feathery lines, perfectly captures the nightmarish atmosphere of this unforgettable poem.
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Don't Forget Your Etiquette!: The Essential Guide to Misbehavior
Ages 7-10

Don't Forget Your Etiquette!: The Essential Guide to Misbehavior
by David J Greenberg
If you’re smart, you’ll read my book
Of modern children’s etiquette.

If you don’t, I’m sad to say –
Your life will be pathetiquette.

Meet Miss Information, the world’s foremost expert on bad behavior, as she offers upside-down advice about the etiquette of absolutely everything. In twenty impishly off-center poems she states her views on such important topics as bathing (with and without gerbils), kissing (Komodo dragons as well as teachers), and eating.

Exuberant illustrations full of hilarious antics add to the humor of this mischievous spoof on bad behavior. These sly poems offer a child-friendly way to discuss what good behavior really should be like and are sure to become every child’s essential guide to – a rollicking good time!
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Alabama Moon by Watt Key
Ages 10-13
Alabama Moon by Watt Key
I could trap my own food and make my own clothes. I could find my way by the stars and make fire in the rain. Pap said he even figured I could whip somebody three times my size. He wasn’t worried about me.

For as long as ten-year-old Moon can remember, he has lived out in the forest in a shelter with his father. They keep to themselves, their only contact with other human beings an occasional trip to the nearest general store. When Moon’s father dies, Moon follows his father’s last instructions: to travel to Alaska to find others like themselves. But Moon is soon caught and entangled in a world he doesn’t know or understand, apparent property of the government he has been avoiding all his life. As the spirited and resourceful Moon encounters constables, jails, institutions, lawyers, true friends, and true enemies, he adapts his wilderness survival skills and learns to survive in the outside world, and even, perhaps, make his home there.

In this compelling, action-packed book, first-time author Watt Key gives us the thrilling coming-of-age story of the unique and extremely appealing Moon.
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Flotsam by David Wiesner
Ages 5-9
FLOTSAM by David Weisner
A bright, science-minded boy goes to the beach equipped to collect and examine flotsam--anything floating that has been washed ashore. Bottles, lost toys, small objects of every description are among his usual finds. But there's no way he could have prepared for one particular discovery: a barnacle-encrusted underwater camera, with its own secrets to share . . . and to keep.

In each of his amazing picture books, David Wiesner has revealed the magical possibilities of some ordinary thing or happening--a frog on a lily pad, a trip to the Empire State Building, a well-known nursery tale. This time, a day at the beach is the springboard into a wildly imaginative exploration of the mysteries of the deep, and of the qualities that enable us to witness these wonders and delight in them.
--Clarion Books 2006
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Saint Iggy by K. L. Going
Young Adult (14 Up)
Saint Iggy by K. L. Going

"I am not so bad a person once you get to know me."

When Iggy Corso gets kicked out of high school, there's no one for him to tell. His mother has gone off, his father is stoned on the couch, and the phone's been disconnected, so even the social worker can't get through. Leaving his public housing behind, Iggy ventures into the world to make something of his life. It's not easy when you're sixteen, have no skills, and your only friend is mixed up with the dealer who got your mom hooked. But Iggy is . . . Iggy, and he has the kind of wisdom that lets him see what no one else can.

K. L. Going's third novel is a haunting achievement about a young man's tragic search for meaning in a world that to him makes no sense.
Harcourt Children's Books 2006
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Everybody's Revolution
Ages 9 Up
Everybody's Revolution by Thomas Fleming

"It's everybody's revolution. There is scarcely an American living today who can't find some sort of connection to it," --Thomas Fleming

The dimensions of the patriot cause during the American Revolution were far more multicultural and multiethnic than we have for so long believed. Women, African Americans, Jews, Native Americans, Hispanic Americans, European immigrants, and young adults played leading roles in the struggle for independence from Great Britain. Today it seems students and teachers want to know more about the past than what a few famous white men did. They want to understand how women and men of different cultures and backgrounds contributed to our early history, and to making America what it is today.

Celebrate the unsung heroes of America's formation with this revealing text. Introduce your reader to little-known historic facts while encouraging an appreciation for the diverse, multicultural foundation of America.
--Scholastic Press, September 1, 2006
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The American Story: 100 True Tales from American History
Ages 9 and Up
The American Story: 100 True Tales from American History
by Jennifer Armstrong
Roger Roth, Illustrator

This magnificent treasury tells the story of America through 100 true tales. Some are tales of triumph—the midnight ride of Paul Revere, the Wright brothers taking to the air, Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the moon. Some are tales of tragedy—the fate of the Donner party, the great fire in Chicago, the eruption of Mt. Saint Helens. There are stories of inventors and athletes, and abolitionists and artists, stories about struggling for freedom—again and again, in so many ways.

Full-color illustrations on nearly every page and short, exciting stories. Notes at the end of each story direct readers to related stories, and a guide to thematic story arcs offers readers (and teachers) an easy way to follow their particular interests throughout the book.
This book that belongs in every home, classroom and library.
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Miss Mingo and the First Day of School
Ages 4-7
MISS MINGO AND THE FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL by Jamie Harper
On sharing day in Miss Mingo's multispecies class, we learn that Cricket hears with his legs, Snake smells with his tongue, and Frog enjoys eating his own skin in this nonfiction storybook filled to the gills with laughter — and learning.

If there's an elephant in the classroom — along with an alligator, a koala, a centipede, an octopus, and who knows what else — it must be Miss Mingo's class on the first day of school! Miss Mingo, herself a flashy flamingo, is eager to start off the year by inviting all creatures great and small to share something special about themselves. From the enormous Hippo to the teeny Ant, each member of her class is certainly unique. Do you have any idea how long Giraffe's tongue is? Or how much water Pelican's pouch can hold? Visit Miss Mingo's classroom for just one day and meet a delightfully diverse group of students — and discover a world full of wonderful facts!
--Candlewick 2006
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Max's Words
Ages 4-8
Max's Words
by Kate Banks
Max’s brothers have grand collections that everyone makes a big fuss over. Benjamin collects stamps and Karl collects coins, and neither one will share with their little brother. So Max decides to start a collection of his own. He’s going to collect words. He starts with small words that he cuts out of newspapers and magazines, but soon his collection has spilled out into the hall. All the while, his brothers are watching. Benjamin brags that he has one thousand stamps. Karl is just a few coins short of five hundred. But a thousand stamps is really just a bunch of stamps, and a lot of coins is only a heap of money. A pile of words, however, can make a story.

Bright, bold pictures incorporating clever wordplay accompany this highly original tale about a younger brother’s ingenuity.
--Farrar, Straus and Giroux 2006
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Pond Scum
Ages 8-12
Pond Scum
by Alan Silberberg
Oliver is a lonely ten-year-old, the type of kid who enjoys pulling the wings off flies just to hear the little “snap.” His life takes a turn, though, when his mom gets a new job and moves the family to a rundown house out in the country.

One day, while attempting to install a TV antenna on the roof, Oliver tries to avoid a kamikaze attack by a vicious crow­ -- and falls through into the attic. There he finds a strange gem that has the power to transform him into any creature he touches. Suddenly, he enters the amazing parallel world of the pond, where he becomes fast friends with a fat salamander named Mooch and a misfit crow named Antoine.

But being a citizen of two worlds can be a lot of responsibility. Soon Oliver learns of a power-hungry crow’s secret plan to use the animals’ fear and distrust of humans for his own evil ends. Oliver must work with his new friends to mobilize the other creatures, using the magic of the gem -- and more courage and loyalty than he ever thought he’d be able to muster.
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Pirates by John Matthews
Ages 6-12
Pirates
by John Matthews
At last the ultimate book of pirates is here! Inside is the stuff of legend, where tales of adventure and intrigue are written in blood. Read about Blackbeard and Captain Kidd. Learn about walking the plank and buried treasure. Discover what was like aboard a pirate ship -- from a pirate's strict code of conduct to the punishments that awaited those that broke them. All the intrigue, adventure, and grizzly details are brought to life in this lavish hardcover package jam packed with fact and fiction, pirate lore, and amazing memorabilia, including:
—a booklet of pirate slang
—a genuine advertisement to recruit pirates
—a booklet of pirate biographies
—a letter from William the III to Captain Kidd
—a pullout featuring pirate weapons
—a treasure map
—a wanted poster for Blackbeard
—sample playing cards
—as well as flaps and fold outs galore!
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 Boys of Few Words: Raising Our Sons to Communicate and Connect
Parents and Teachers
Boys of Few Words: Raising Our Sons to Communicate and Connect
by Adam J. Cox, PhD
When parents feel separated from their sons by a curtain of silence or a wall of resistance, they're right to be concerned. Boys of few words--the ones who limit their expression to a timid shrug or an indifferent grunt--need our help. Whether the problem is rooted in "nature" or "nurture," boys who grow up unable to talk about their thoughts and feelings find it hard to connect with others at school, home, and eventually in business and personal relationships. Psychologist Adam J. Cox helps parents understand all the factors that may be limiting their son's ability or willingness to communicate--from social pressures to brain differences, from personality traits to a simple lack of vocabulary. Based on these insights, parents can choose specific strategies to help their son improve the language and social skills needed to express himself. Mothers and fathers everywhere will see their own boys in this book, and will come away prepared to help them overcome obstacles, connect with others, and succeed in school and beyond.
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Is Your Son A Boy of Few Words?

A True and Faithful Narrative
Ages 11-14

by Katherine Sturtevant
In Restoration London, sixteen-year-old Meg Moore is something of an anomaly. Unlike other girls her age, Meg pores over books. She spends long hours conversing with the famous authors and poets who visit her father’s bookstore, and even writes her own stories, laboring over every word until her hand is black with ink. Without warning, however, Meg comes to learn exactly how powerful words can be. The day her best friend’s brother Edward sets sail for Italy, Meg scoffs at his attempts at romance by answering him with a thoughtless jest. Soon news travels to London that Edward’s ship has been captured and he has been sold as a slave in North Africa – and Meg cannot shake the thought that her cruel words are the cause. Now Meg must use her fiery language to bring Edward home, imploring her fellow Londoners to give all that they can to buy Edward’s freedom. But once Meg learns to direct the power behind her words, will she be able to undo the damage she has caused, and write freely the stories that she longs to put to paper?
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Mia's Story by Michael Foreman
Ages 4-9
Mia's Story by Michael Foreman
From award-winning picture book artist Michael Foreman comes the uplifting tale of a girl whose search for a lost puppy leads to some wondrous wildflowers — and a magical way to transform her barren village.

In a bleak little village in Chile, Papa comes home from his day of selling metal scraps with a wonderful surprise for his daughter, Mia. It's a puppy she names Poco, who follows the little girl everywhere — until one day, as puppies will do, Poco wanders away. As Mia searches for her pup, she finds herself all alone at the top of the highest mountain, where she gathers a clump of snow-white flowers to plant by her home. Soon Mia's fragrant flowers have spread through the village and blanketed the once-ugly dump. Before long, she is selling her flowers in the city square, telling crowds of customers that "they come from the stars." But wherever the flowers are, Mia is always reminded of Poco. Is it possible the flowers may bring back her beloved dog after all?
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Blue
Ages 9-12
Blue by Joyce Moyer Hostetter
With her father away at war to fight Adolf Hitler, a young girl gains strength by joining her community in battling polio in this story based on the 1944 epidemic and the "Miracle of Hickory" Hospital in Hickory, North Carolina.
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Victory by Susan Cooper
Ages 9-12
Victory
by Susan Cooper
Two Children, Two Struggles, One Battle...

One child is Sam Robbins, a powder monkey aboard HMS Victory, the ship in which Vice-Admiral Lord Nelson will die a hero's death at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. The other is Molly Jennings, an English girl transplanted from London to the United States in 2006, fighting a battle of her own against loss and loneliness.

This extraordinary time-shifting adventure tells the interwoven stories of Sam and Molly, linked by a mystery. Sam is a farm boy, kidnapped at eleven years old by the "press gang" to serve in the Royal Navy. At first terrified and seasick, Sam is transformed gradually into a sailor. In the rowdy, dangerous world of a hundred-gun warship enduring the Napoleonic Wars, he meets both cruelty and kindness, and survives a fearsome battle whose echoes reach through the years to involve Molly as well. Like Sam, Molly has lost her childhood but will find her future, with help from a very unexpected source.

Separate yet together, Sam Robbins and Molly Jennings struggle through fear and excitement to a final ordeal that terrifyingly tests their courage. And the moving climax of the book shows two lives joined forever by the touch of Nelson, one of the greatest sailors of all time.
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Ivy + Bean by Annie Barrows
Ages 6-8
Ivy + Bean (Book One)
by Annie Barrows
The moment they saw each other, Bean and Ivy knew they wouldn't be friends. But when Bean plays a joke on her sister, Nancy, and has to hide—quick—Ivy comes to the rescue, proving that sometimes the best of friends are people never meant to like each other. Vibrant characters and lots of humor make this a charming—and addictive—introduction to Ivy and Bean.
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Listen! by Stephanie S. Tolan
Ages 9-11
Listen!
by Stephanie S. Tolan
For twelve-year-old Charley, recovering from the accident that shattered her leg is nowhere near as difficult as facing the solitude of a summer without her best friend and with a father who does nothing, now, but work. Solitude means time to think, time to hear for the first time the awful silence left in her world two years ago by her mother's death.

But the summer holds a surprise for Charley, in the form of a mysterious dog who appears in the woods across the lake from her home. In order to connect with this wild spirit she names Coyote, Charley will have to do more than just walk. She will have to follow Coyote into the heart of her memories: the woods her mother loved so much. And she will have to learn to listen past the silence.

This unsentimental, unforgettable story comes straight from the heart of Newbery Honor author Stephanie S. Tolan. As she describes Charley's difficult emotional and physical journey, she weaves together themes of nature, family, and love into a complex and powerful portrait of recovery.
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Abigale the Happy Whale
Ages 4-8
Abigale the Happy Whale
by Peter Farrelly
All of the humpback whales in Santa Monica are sad except for one-Abigale the Happy Whale. What Abigale doesn't realize is that she and her sea friends are in big trouble because of all the pollution in the ocean. It's up to her to save her friends and the ocean and to make sure everyone has a whale of a time cleaning up together!

Famously funny Hollywood writer and director Peter Farrelly introduces his humor to a new generation of fans. Abigale the Happy Whale offers them a timely, kid-friendly ecological message paired with loveable illustrations from Jamie Rama. Readers are sure to want to join Abigale and her friends Golfin' Dolphin, Clem the Clam, Wordsmith the Swordfish, and Moby Duck on their underwater adventure to clean up the pollution in the ocean where they live.
--Megan Tingley Books 2006
@AMAZON

Stay With Me
Ages 14 and Up
Stay With Me
by Garret Greymann-Weyr
The nature of being a teenager is to explore what it means to be part of and independent from family. In Stay With Me, a new novel by Printz Honor winner Garret Freymann-Weyr, sixteen-year-old narrator, Leila Abranel, has a strong need to understand her family's past and her two much older half-sisters. When her sister, Rebecca, commits suicide, Leila, her parents, and her remaining sister Clare have to adjust to new roles in each others' lives. At the same time, Leila is experiencing significant events that propel her toward maturity - living away from her parents, getting her first job, and a developing relationship with an older man.

She's also dyslexic, which adds a deeper level of intensity to her desire to make sense of life's complexities. As in real life, there's no neat and easy solution for the problems Leila faces, and that's what makes her story relevant to teens. Garret Freymann-Weyr is one of an innovative group of writers whom NPR cited for the "new depth and seriousness" they bring to YA fiction.

Leila's dyslexia is treated as a fact of life rather than as an issue in itself. "When you know, as all kids with learning disabilities do, that you are operating at a disadvantage, you learn to make copious mental notes before acting or deciding," Freymann-Weyr explains. The "work-arounds" that Leila develops because of her dyslexia are an important part of what shapes her into a thoughtful, caring person. During the course of the novel, Leila gains confidence in her ability to pursue what she hopes will be her own life's work - a career as a set designer for the theater.

On one level, Stay With Me is a mystery about the intricacies of family relationships and Leila's quest to understand why Rebecca killed herself. It is also an exploration of how impossible and important love is. Leila's growing attraction to Eamon, a man in his early 30s, and her decision to proceed with this relationship, is unusual in a book for this age group. Freymann-Weyr portrays their relationship with an honesty and sensitivity that transcends older man/younger woman clichés.
--Houghton Mifflin 2006
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Cookies: Bite-Size Life Lessons
Ages 4-6
Cookies: Bite-Size Life Lessons
by Amy Krouse Rosenthal
Everyone knows cookies taste good, but these cookies also have something good to say. Open this delectable book to any page and you will find out something about life. Cookies: Bite-Size Life Lessons is a new kind of dictionary, one that defines mysteries such as "fair" and "unfair" and what it really means to "cooperate." The book is by turns clever, honest, inspirational, and whimsical. Go ahead, take a bite!
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An Egg Is Quiet
Ages 6-10
An Egg Is Quiet
by Dianna Aston
Illustrated by Sylvia Long
Award-winning artist Sylvia Long has teamed with up-and-coming author Dianna Aston to create this gorgeous and informative introduction to eggs. From tiny hummingbird eggs to giant ostrich eggs, oval ladybug eggs to tubular dogfish eggs, gooey frog eggs to fossilized dinosaur eggs, it magnificently captures the incredible variety of eggs and celebrates their beauty and wonder.

The evocative text is sure to inspire lively questions and observations. Yet while poetic in voice and elegant in design, the book introduces children to more than 60 types of eggs and an interesting array of egg facts. Even the endpapers brim with information. A tender and fascinating guide that is equally at home being read to a child on a parent's lap as in a classroom reading circle.
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Barrons Readers
Barron's Reader's Clubhouse:
Helping Kids Become Readers One Fun Step at a Time
Titles are Here
The Reader's Clubhouse series consists of two nine-book sets that teach reading to children from preschool to grades K and 1. Each title in the series emphasizes one phonics family. Fiction titles feature attractive illustrations and have story themes that range from funny to serious. Each fiction title also suggests a brief activity that allows kids to interact with the book's subject matter. Nonfiction titles are photo-illustrated, and feature "fun facts" that enrich a child's reading experience. All of the books contain word lists that help the child learn to sound out words.

The lessons in the series are reinforced by play-and-learn ideas on the Reader's Clubhouse Web site www.barronsclubhouse.com which was launched April 1, 2006. Kids who visit the Clubhouse will receive a membership package and access to an online reading journal along with games, stickers and puzzles. Parents will find family activities, recipes that feature words from the series and tips for building phonic skills. Teachers can use the Clubhouse's monthly teacher pack for classroom handouts and ideas.

Wild Weather
Wild Weather
Ages 8-12
Wild Weather
by Caroline Harris and Warren Faidley
Join the world-renowned tornado chaser and weather photographer Warren Faidley, who will be your guide as you explore the world’s most extreme environments in this innovative new book. Visit Tornado Alley in the United States and take a close-up look at how these deadly twisters form. Find out from Warren what it’s like to be a storm-chaser, and learn about monsoons, tsunamis, blizzards, mirages, and the effects of weather phenomena like El Niño. Investigate the wildest and the worst weather Mother Nature has to offer with the man they call the “Cyclone Cowboy”!
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Seven for a Secret
All Ages
Seven for a Secret
by Laurence Anholt

1 for Sorrow, 2 for Joy
3 for a Girl, 4 for a Boy
5 for Silver, 6 for Gold
7 for a Secret - never to be told.
- The Magpie Song

Told entirely in letter format and woven around the ancient rhyme of the magpies, Seven for a Secret by Laurence Anholt is a deceptively simple story about a little girl named Ruby and the love, and eventual loss, of her aging grandfather. Anholt, a master storyteller, uses his considerable skills to deftly handle one of the toughest subjects for parents to talk to their children about - the passing of a loved one. The legendary magpie song and lyrical text keeps Seven for a Secret's message quietly joyous, making the point that life is something to be celebrated and memories are to be treasured.

Geographically, Ruby and her grandfather could not be farther apart - Ruby in an apartment rising high above an English city, Grandfather tucked away in the countryside. But through letters lovingly written, the two form a special bond. A new job for dad, a new baby, a magpie necklace, a bad cold for Grampa, a special secret passed from Grandfather to granddaughter - the letters and accompanying art provide young readers with subtle clues of the changes for the family and the passage of time. The magpie riddle is woven in and out of the story - cumulating with a worthwhile surprise.

The magic of Seven for a Secret rests not only in the words and pictures on each page, but also in what can be read in-between the lines. Generational bonds, moving to a new home, growing up, old age, family traditions, sorrow, and joy are important points that reveal themselves from between the end pages. Without being overly sentimental, Seven for a Secret delivers a perfect starting point for family discussions and might even inspire a handwritten letter or two.
--Frances Lincoln Books 2006
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The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane
Ages 8-11
The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane
by Kate Dicamillo
Once, in a house on Egypt Street, there lived a china rabbit named Edward Tulane. The rabbit was very pleased with himself, and for good reason: he was owned by a girl named Abilene, who treated him with the utmost care and adored him completely.

And then, one day, he was lost.

Kate DiCamillo takes us on an extraordinary journey, from the depths of the ocean to the net of a fisherman, from the top of a garbage heap to the fireside of a hobos camp, from the bedside of an ailing child to the bustling streets of Memphis. And along the way, we are shown a true miracle: even a heart of the most breakable kind can learn to love, to lose, and to love again.
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Pecorino Plays Ball
Ages 5-8

Pecorino Plays Ball
by Alan Madison
Do you know Pecorino Sasquatch? The boy who got stuck inside a tuba at his first concert? Well, he's about to play in his first game of baseball. You see, his mother just signed him up for Little League, and Pecorino can't wait to play, even though he doesn't really know what baseball is. But by the end of this spring day, Pecorino will have learned all there is to know about bowling pin-shaped coaches, burbling bubble gum, yodeling umpires, oxen for sale -- everything that makes America's pastime great. He might even manage to catch a baseball too.
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Beyond Jupiter: The Story Of Planetary Astronomer Heidi Hammel
Ages 13-17
Beyond Jupiter: The Story Of Planetary Astronomer Heidi Hammel
by Fred Bortz
Heidi Hammel is an out-of-this world explorer. With her feet planted firmly on Earth, she takes trips millions of miles out into space. How does she do this?

Heidi Hammel is a planetary astronomer, a scientist who uses the world’s most powerful telescopes to learn about planets. By making remarkable discoveries in the furthest reaches of our solar system, Heidi also helps us better understand the planet we call home.

The giant planets Neptune and Uranus are Heidi’s specialties. She was on the team that first spotted Neptune’s Great Dark Spot, a raging storm as big as Earth. Heidi also led a team of astronomers tracking the Great Comet Crash, a spectacular event in which a fragmented comet pounded Jupiter for an entire week. There’s no telling what Heidi will find when she peers into a telescope. That’s what makes her work exciting.
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Weedflower
Ages 11 Up
Weedflower
by Cynthia Kadohata
Twelve-year-old Sumiko feels her life has been made up of two parts: before Pearl Harbor and after it. The good part and the bad part. Raised on a flower farm in California, Sumiko is used to being the only Japanese girl in her class. Even when the other kids tease her, she always has had her flowers and family to go home to.

That all changes after the horrific events of Pearl Harbor. Other Americans start to suspect that all Japanese people are spies for the emperor, even if, like Sumiko, they were born in the United States! As suspicions grow, Sumiko and her family find themselves being shipped to an internment camp in one of the hottest deserts in the United States. The vivid color of her previous life is gone forever, and now dust storms regularly choke the sky and seep into every crack of the military barrack that is her new "home."

Sumiko soon discovers that the camp is on an Indian reservation and that the Japanese are as unwanted there as they'd been at home. But then she meets a young Mohave boy who might just become her first real friend...if he can ever stop being angry about the fact that the internment camp is on his tribe's land.

With searing insight and clarity, Newbery Medal-winning author Cynthia Kadohata explores an important and painful topic through the eyes of a young girl who yearns to belong. Weedflower is the story of the rewards and challenges of a friendship across the racial divide, as well as the based-on-real-life story of how the meeting of Japanese Americans and Native Americans changed the future of both.
--Atheneum, April 2006
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Mabel O'Leary Put Peas in Her Ear-y
Ages 4-7
Mabel O'Leary Put Peas in Her Ear-y
by Mary Delaney
Mabel O'Leary Was growing quite weary
Of staring alone at her food....
Poor Mabel can't leave the dinner table until she eats all of her peas. When she decides to hide them in her ears instead, Mabel can't hear a thing her mother says. This causes a comedy of errors! The zany rhyme and its playful illustrations will have young readers holding their bellies with laughter and cheering for more.
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Flying Feet
Ages 4-6
Flying Feet: A Story of Irish Dance
by Anna Marlin Burgard
Leighanne Dees, Illustrator
The competition is on! Two champion dancers, Aidan and Michael, arrive in the village of Ballyconneely at the very same moment, each hoping to become the town's dance master. The villagers can support only one instructor, so the men agree to battle it out through rounds of reels and hornpipes. At each stage of the contest, the men challenge each other by calling for more and more difficult tunes to test their opponent's skill. Cheered on by the gathering crowd, the men dance on increasingly daring platforms—from rain barrels to stone walls and beyond—as each inspires the other until the best man wins. Based on a true event, this classic tale illustrates the enduring tradition of dance and music in Ireland.
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