My Booklist

  • Here you will find books on various topics.  If you are looking for a book on a topic not listed, feel free to contact us and we will point you in the right direction!

Friendship

Responsibility/Honesty

Uniqueness/Self Esteem

  • ABC, I Like Me

    by Nancy Carlson Year Published:
    This concept book vibrates with bright colors, happy thoughts, and joie de vivre. Beginning with "I am Awesome, Brave, and Cheerful," it goes on to present 20 other ways to feel good about oneself, concluding with "Yawn...I need a good night's sleep so tomorrow...I can Zoom on!"

    Comments (-1)
  • Bella & Bean

    by Rebecca Kai Dotlich Year Published:
    From Booklist: "Little Bella is a poetry-writing rat. Bean is a fashion-conscious rat. It’s hard to see how they can be best friends when one wants to think about rivers and moons, and the other wants to think about hats. Words like flow, gurgle, and silver are put down on Bella’s pages of poems, but even as she demands peace and quiet to write, she knows she’s missing out on fun with her friend. But Bean’s not one to hold a grudge, and when invited by Bella to sit under the stars and listen to poems, she’s happy to oblige—and thrilled when one of the verses is about her. The story could be a tad shorter and the art might have had a few more amusing details, but this rodent duo is a good example of how opposites attract and can improve each other’s lives."

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  • Cinder Edna

    by Ellen Jackson Year Published:
    From Publishers Weekly: Instead of glass slippers, Cinderella's neighbor Cinder Edna wears comfortable penny loafers to the ball, where she falls in love with the prince's goofy, tender-hearted younger brother.

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  • Frankie Stein

    by Lola Schaefer Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: "Frankie Stein is nothing like his monstrous, green-skinned parents. Instead, he is cute, with a pink face and golden hair. In an effort to make him more like them, Mr. and Mrs. Stein "made faces at him" and "shouted BOO! and "GOTCHA!" To give him a more frightening facade, they paint his blond hair blue, cap his first white tooth with green, and place green "bump stickers" all over his face. Still not finding their child terrifying enough, they teach him to walk stiffly and groan. When that doesn't work, they describe the horrifying attributes of their relatives. In the end, little Frankie discovers his own way of being scary, which frightens even his parents. Purples and greens dominate the illustrations, emphasizing the cartoony creepiness of the Stein house. While little Frankie resembles a round-faced toddler, his parents are reminiscent of, as their last name suggests, Frankenstein's monster. Children are certain to find amusement in this charming story, which also subtly teaches them the importance of individuality."

    Comments (-1)
  • Hooway for Wodney Wat

    by Helen Lester Year Published:
    From Library Journal: A shy rat who can't pronounce his r's rises to the occasion and outsmarts a new student who terrorizes the classroom. An ego booster for any child who has ever been bullied or teased, with illustrations that exude charm and personality

    Comments (-1)
  • I’m Gonna Like Me

    by Jamie Lee Curtis Year Published:
    From Publishers Weekly: The dynamic duo behind Today I Feel Silly returns for another lively, emotionally reassuring picture book. This time out, Curtis looks to the source of what makes children (of all ages) feel comfortable in their own skin. Cornell pictures the perky rhymes being delivered by a pair of young protagonists confident enough to shake off embarrassment and to feel proud (though not overly so) of personal achievements. "I'm gonna like me when I'm called on to stand. I know all my letters like the back of my hand," announces a girl dressed in plaid, flowers and a cape. "I'm gonna like me when my answer is wrong, like thinking my ruler was ten inches long," says the boy as both youngsters stand before the school blackboard. Ultimately, the author concludes "I'm gonna like me 'cause I'm loved and I know it,and liking myself is the best way to show it."

    Comments (-1)
  • Incredible Me!

    by Kathy Appelt & Brian G. Karas Year Published:
    From Booklist: A little, redheaded girl romps through this book delighting in herself: she's a star, and she knows it. Her vivacity and self-confidence are apparent from the start, when she revels at her reflection in a mirror ("Nobody has my singular nose / Nobody taps on my ten toes"), to the end, when she dances with flowers in her hair, singing, "I'm the pearl in the oyster, the A to the Z / I'm the one, the only, incredible ME!"

    Comments (-1)
  • Love, Ruby Lavender

    by Deborah Wiles Year Published:
    From School Library Journal "A lively, humorous story featuring Miss Eula Garnet and her granddaughter Ruby as they share adventures and day-to-day miseries. The feisty duo shakes up their Mississippi town, Halleluia, "Population: 400 Good Friendly Folks And A Few Old Soreheads," when they liberate three soon-to-be-euthanized chickens from an egg ranch in a daring, daylight raid. They share an abiding sadness over the death of Grandpa Garnet, whose passing seems to be clouded by some terrible secret. When Miss Eula announces an unexpected trip to Hawaii to visit her son and to put some distance between herself and sorrow, the girl is shattered. Ruby fills her days by writing daily letters to her grandmother, monitoring the chickens, befriending the niece of the new fourth-grade teacher, and trying to avoid her nemesis whose father died in the same accident as Grandpa Garnet. Tensions between Ruby and Melba escalate as rehearsals for the annual Town Operetta commence. Resulting fireworks clear the air, reveal secrets, and resolve hard feelings just in time for Miss Eula's return. The engaging narrative, interspersed with amusing letters exchanged between Eula and Ruby and articles from the local newspaper, is witty and fast paced and the quirky, diverse cast of human and poultry characters is colorful and spirited, if not totally realistic. This refreshing novel recognizes how daily events often take on huge proportions in the minds of children and that with love, support, and kindness, youngsters can find their way."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
    Comments (-1)
  • Madeline

    by Ludwig Bemelmans Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review Poor Miss Clavel! In "an old house in Paris that was covered with vines," Miss Clavel oversees the education of 12 little girls, the littlest of whom is the mischievous Madeline. Despite her size, she fearlessly pooh-poohs the tiger in the zoo and frightens Miss Clavel with her adventurous antics. When she awakens the entire house with her plaintive cries in the middle of the night, Doctor Cohn whisks the appendicitis-stricken Madeline off to the hospital where, some two hours later, she awakens to find a scar on her stomach! The scar (not to mention the flowers, toys, and candy given to Madeline by her father) proves quite interesting to the rest of Miss Clavel's charges when they make a special trip to visit her. Ludwig Bemelmans's lilting rhymes are music to children's ears, and the quirky, oddly perfect drawings of the girls in "two straight lines" lend an enticing Parisian flavor to this perennial children's favorite.

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
    Comments (-1)
  • Maniac Magee

    by Jerry Spinelli Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: "Maniac Magee is a folk story about a boy, a very excitable boy. One that can outrun dogs, hit a home run off the best pitcher in the neighborhood, tie a knot no one can undo. "Kid's gotta be a maniac," is what the folks in Two Mills say. It's also the story of how this boy, Jeffrey Lionel "Maniac" Magee, confronts racism in a small town, tries to find a home where there is none and attempts to soothe tensions between rival factions on the tough side of town."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
    Comments (-1)
  • Shrinking Violet

    by Cari Best and Giselle Potter Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: When class bully Irwin taunts Violet about her fat knees (they're not) or deadly sewer gas smell (she doesn't), all she wants to do is shrink away. The thought of being in the class play about the solar system makes her itch and scratch and twirl her hair. But when she's alone or with her best friend, Opal, Violet is a master performer, mimicking her classmates and retaliating against Irwin with razor-sharp wit. Her chance for real-life revenge comes at last during the play, when she plays the offstage role of Lady Space. On opening night, when Irwin, a.k.a. Mars, starts to spin out of control and forgets his lines, Violet saves the day (but not without a little of her savage humor).

    Comments (-1)
  • Stick Up for Yourself: Every Kid's Guide to Personal Power & Positive Self-Esteem

    by Gershen Kaufman,Lev Raphael, and Pamela Espeland Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: A self-help guide to positive thinking, high self-esteem, and responsible personal power. Based on a program originally developed for adults, the book's premise is that all young people can and should be taught the skills necessary to face common issues, such as making choices, liking themselves, and solving problems. Exercises guide readers through learning about their own feelings, dreams, and needs--while stressing that they are responsible for their own behavior and happiness.

    Comments (-1)
  • Tacky the Penguin

    by Helen Lester & Lynn Munsinger Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Tacky the Penguin is a total nonconformist who lives with a group of formal, proper penguins. But it is Tacky who foils the plans of three critters with ``get-rich-quick plans' that threaten the penguins' existence. With his un-penguin-like antics, Tacky puzzles the hunters to such an extent that they're firmly convinced they cannot be in the ``land of the pretty penguins.' This is a rollicking tale that clearly shows that there are ad vantages to being an individual.

    Comments (-1)
  • The Cow that Went Oink

    by Bernard Most Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: A cow and a pig are laughed at because they aren't like the other farm animals. Through friendship and determination, they turn the situation around, and the story ends on a high note with both animals being different in a positive way.

    Comments (-1)
  • The Secret World of Walter Anderson

    by Hester Bass Year Published:
    Product Description: "Enter the fascinating world of reclusive nature-lover Walter Anderson — perhaps the most famous American artist you’ve never heard of. Residents along the Mississippi Gulf Coast thought Walter Anderson was odd, rowing across twelve miles of open water in a leaky skiff to reach Horn, an uninhabited island without running water or electricity. But this solitary artist didn’t much care what they thought as he spent weeks at a time on his personal paradise, sleeping under his boat, sometimes eating whatever washed ashore, sketching and painting the natural surroundings and the animals that became his friends. Here Walter created some of his most brilliant watercolors, work he kept hidden during his lifetime. In a beautifully crafted picture book biography, writer Hester Bass and Caldecott Honor-winning illustrator E. B. Lewis pay homage to an uncompromising American artist."

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  • The Sissy Duckling

    by Harvey Fierstein & Henry Cole Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Elmer is not like the other male ducklings. "They boxed while Elmer baked. When they built forts, Elmer made sand castles. They had a football game, and Elmer put on a puppet show." When they call him a sissy, his mother insists that he is simply special, and "being special sometimes scares those who are not." Eventually, he is threatened by the local bully, Drake, and when he runs instead of fighting, his embarrassed father declares, "He's no son of mine!" Heartbroken, Elmer runs away and sets up house deep in the forest. As the air turns cooler, he sneaks to the great pond to view his parents one last time before they fly south and sees his father shot by hunters. He takes him home and nurses him back to health, and when the flock returns in the spring, Elmer's father boasts about his son's bravery and loyalty.

    Comments (-1)

Anger

  • A Volcano in My Tummy: Helping Children to Handle Anger

    by Eliane Whitehouse Year Published:
    A Volcano in My Tummy: Helping Children to Handle Anger presents a clear and effective approach to helping children and adults alike understand and deal constructively with children's anger. Using easy to understand yet rarely taught skills for anger management, including how to teach communication of emotions, A Volcano in My Tummy offers engaging, well-organized activities which help to overcome the fear of children's anger which many adult care-givers experience. By carefully distinguishing between anger the feeling, and violence the behavior, this accessible little book, primarily created for ages 6 to thirteen, helps to create an awareness of anger, enabling children to relate creatively and harmoniously at critical stages in their development.

    Comments (-1)
  • How to Take the Grrrr Out of Anger

    by Elizabeth Verdick Year Published:
    Anger is a part of life. We can’t avoid it, we shouldn’t stuff it, and we can’t make it go away. Kids need help learning how to manage their anger. This book speaks directly to kids and offers strategies they can start using immediately. Blending tips and ideas with jokes and funny cartoons, it guides kids to understand that anger is normal and can be expressed in many ways—some healthy, some not. It teaches them how to recognize anger in themselves and others, how to deal with situations and emotions (loneliness, guilt, frustration, fear) that lead to or mask anger, and how to deal with the anger they feel. Young readers learn that violence is not acceptable and there are better, safer ways to resolve conflicts. They also discover what to do when people around them are angry, how to get help, and how to locate other resources (books, hotlines, school groups) when they need more support.

    Comments (-1)
  • Humpty Dumpty Egg-Splodes

    by Kevin O’Malley Year Published:
    From Publishers Weekly: When mild-looking Mr. Hatchery opens a volume of nursery rhymes, glum children mutter, "Boring." They don't anticipate his turning "Mary Had a Little Lamb" into an overwrought tale of an "egg-ceedingly large Humpty Dumpty" terrorizing a Mother Goose town. Mr. Hatchery envisions Humpty behaving like an ovoid Godzilla, demolishing a one-room schoolhouse and growling, "I'm huge, and I'm not gonna take it anymore.... `Oh, look, the tubby bald eggman is falling off the wall, haa, haa, haa. ' I'm back, baby." Old King Cole, a lazy guy with Groucho Marx's mustache, crouching walk and merry reputation, calls for reinforcements. Peter Piper "pitched pickled peppers until he was positively pooped," but neither he nor the Muffin Man fail to scramble their foe. Humpty ransacks their Shakespearean-era city while chortling, "London Bridge is falling down!"

    Comments (-1)
  • If You're Angry and You Know It!

    by Cecily Kaiser Year Published: Easy Reading
    Product Description Amazon.com: If you're angry and you know it,and you really want to show it,if you're angry and you know it,STOMP YOUR FEET!This Level 2 Scholastic Reader is perfect for young ones learning to sort out their emotions for the first time. Cecily Kaiser changes the lyrics to a favorite tune, telling children to do things like bang a drum, take deep breaths, and walk away when they're angry.

    Comments (-1)
  • Mean Soup

    by Betsy Everett Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Horace has had a bad day--including getting stepped on by a show-and-tell cow and riding home with Miss Pearl, who nearly kills three poodles on the way. He feels mean, so his sympathetic mother suggests that they make soup. She salts a pot of boiling water and then they take turns screaming into it and sticking their tongues out at it. Horace also bangs a spoon on the side of the pot while it boils on the stove (an unsafe practice) and, in a jarring departure from realism, he breathes ``his best dragon breath,' at which point flames emerge from his mouth. At last Horace smiles.
    Comments (-1)
  • What to Do When Your Temper Flares: A Kid's Guide to Overcoming Problems With Anger

    by Dawn Huebner Year Published:
    Did you know that anger is like fire? It starts with a spark, igniting us with energy and purpose. But it can also blaze out of control, causing lots of problems. If you're a kid whose temper quickly flares, a kid whose anger gets too big, too hot, too fast, this book is for you. What to Do When Your Temper Flares guides children and their parents through the cognitive-behavioral techniques used to treat problems with anger. Engaging examples, lively illustrations, and step-by-step instructions teach children a set of "anger dousing" methods aimed at cooling angry thoughts and controlling angry actions, resulting in calmer, more effective kids. This interactive self-help book is the complete resource for educating, motivating, and empowering children to work toward change.

    Comments (-1)
  • When Sophie Gets Angry

    by Molly Bang Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Sophie is playing with her stuffed gorilla when her sister wrests it from her, knocking her to the floor. When their mother agrees that it is her sister's turn to play with the toy, Sophie becomes so angry that "She wants to smash the world to smithereens." She kicks, screams, and eventually runs into the woods where she climbs a huge beech tree, looks out over the water, and is comforted by the "wide world." Calm, she returns home ready to participate in family life.

    Comments (-1)

Worry/Anxiety/Stress

Cliques/Gangs

Bullying

Acceptance/Tolerance

  • As Good As Anybody

    by Richard Michelson Year Published:
    From Booklist: *Starred Review* In this powerful, well-crafted story about a partnership between two great civil rights leaders, Michelson shows how the fight for human rights affects everyone. Martin Luther King and Polish rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel each grew up in a loving, religious household, where each was taught clear messages about self-respect. As an adult, Heschel escaped the Nazis and immigrated to America, but he lost much of his family during the Holocaust. Driven to fight bigotry in all its forms, he became a supporter of King. Michelson writes in poetic language that gracefully uses repetitive sentence structures and themes to emphasize the similarities between the two men’s lives. Also admirable is Michelson’s ability to convey complex historical concepts, such as segregation, in clear, potent terms that will speak directly to readers.

    Comments (-1)
  • Courtney's Birthday Party

    by Loretta Long Year Published:
    Product Description: in Courtne'y birthday party she reminds us that prejudice is often learned through the things that are left unsaid.

    Comments (-1)
  • Goin' Somplace Special

    by Patricia C. McKissack Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: Confronted with the indignities and humiliations of segregated Nashville in the 1950s, young 'Tricia Ann holds her head high and remembers that she is "somebody, a human being--no better, no worse than anybody else in this world." For the first time, 'Tricia Ann has been allowed to venture outside her community all by herself. Her grandmother has prepared her well, fortifying her "with enough love, respect, and pride to overcome any situation." 'Tricia Ann, though frustrated by the Jim Crow laws that forbid her, as an African American, to enter certain restaurants and hotels, or even to sit on park benches marked "For Whites Only," rises above her pain and makes her way to one of the only places in the city that welcomes her with open arms: the public library.

    Comments (-1)
  • Jackie's Bat

    by Marybeth Lorbiecki Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: A fictionalized account of Robinson's first season with the Brooklyn Dodgers, as seen through the eyes of Joey, a batboy. He has attended games with his father since he was a toddler, and he's been a fan of dem bums for years. He meets the star player in the locker room on Robinson's first day as a Dodger, and though the man is friendly, Joey remembers that Pops says, it ain't right, a white boy serving a black man. He gives the first baseman the cold shoulder and refuses to clean his shoes as he does for the other players. As Joey watches Robinson endure the prejudice of fans and players on other teams, he comes to admire him both as a ballplayer and a man. Eventually, both the boy and Pops admit that he earned his place in history. An afterword gives more information on Robinson's career and legacy. Pinkney's watercolor illustrations, awash in bright hues and expressive details, enliven the characters with sinewy, curvaceous lines. The slight story is saddled with a simplistic ending, but it merits praise as a thoughtful lesson in tolerance; teachers, in particular, will appreciate it as a jumpstart for discussion.

    Comments (-1)
  • Looking After Louis

    by Lesley Ely Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Grade 1-4-This upbeat look at mainstreaming is told from the point of view of a little girl who sits next to an autistic boy. Louis, who repeats words he hears and has little interaction with his peers, gets away with behavior that the other children cannot, such as mimicking the teacher. One day, after he shows interest in playing soccer with a classmate, Miss Owlie allows both of them to go outside and play during the afternoon, prompting the narrator to point out the unfairness of this treatment. With her teacher's help, the child comes to realize that sometimes it's OK to "break rules for special people."

    Comments (-1)
  • Moses Goes To School

    by Isaac Millman Year Published:
    From Booklist: As in Moses Goes to a Concert (1998), this joyful picture book tells a story in written English and also in American Sign Language (ASL). This time the focus is directly on how deaf children learn at their special public school--in the classroom, on the playground, and on the school bus.

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  • Night Golf

    by William Miller Year Published:
    From Publishers Weekly: Set in the 1950s, this inspiring picture book stars an African-American boy whose love of golf helps him rise above the racial prejudice that would keep him off the links. When young James discovers a rusty, cast-off golf club in the trash, nothing matches "how good the club felt in his hand." But the town's only golf course is open exclusively to white men. Longing to be near the game even if he can't play it, James takes a job as a caddy. As he lugs golf bags, the boy forges a bond with wise African-American caddy Charlie, who introduces him to "night golf," a way to play the course and perfect their game after hours. James's games of night golf pay off when one day he's asked to prove his athletic prowess to a pair of white golfers. In his hefty but well-paced text, Miller (Zora Hurston and the Chinaberry Tree) draws a smooth parallel between the old-boys'-club world of golf and racial prejudice.

    Comments (-1)
  • The Lady in the Box

    by Ann McGovern Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Grade 2-5. A modern morality tale that never strays too far from the stark reality of homelessness while portraying the generosity and concern of two children for a stranger. Written in direct, disarming prose, Ben's story tells how he and his sister try to help the "lady in the box" who keeps her "home" over the heating grate outside the Circle Deli. Worried, they take her gifts of food and warm clothing and eventually find out that her name is Dorrie. When the owner of the Circle Deli tries to force the woman to move, the children's mother convinces him to let her stay.

    Comments (-1)
  • The Story Of Ruby Bridges

    by Robert Coles Year Published:
    Sustained by family and faith, one brave six-year-old child found the strength to walk alone through howling protesters and enter a whites-only school in New Orleans in 1960. Ruby Bridges did it every day for weeks that turned into months. The white parents withdrew their kids, and Ruby sat alone with her teacher in an empty classroom in an empty building and learned her lessons.

    Comments (-1)
  • Yankee Girl

    by Mary Ann Rodman Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: "Alice Ann Moxley's father works for the FBI and has been transferred from Chicago to Jackson, MS, in 1964 to protect civil rights workers and individuals registering to vote. Taken aback by everything from Southern accents to the way black people are treated, Alice finds it very hard to adjust and nearly impossible to make friends. She's quickly branded "Yankee Girl," and the one friend she finds, the boy next door, abandons her when school starts-late this year, due to fear of integration. Alice's school is indeed being integrated, by two daughters of an important ally of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Valerie Taylor is in Alice's sixth-grade class, and although they are both outsiders, Alice is torn between trying to befriend her and trying to fit in with the popular girls. As the civil rights movement heats up, the Ku Klux Klan begins to focus on Alice's family. It takes until spring for her to sort out her inner conflicts, and by then tragedy has occurred and her reality has been shattered. Chapters begin with dated headlines that build a framework for the story. Some of the language is troubling, but it's also appropriate and adds to the increasing tension. Constant references to the Beatles embellish the '60s flavor, and the dialogue and narrative flow naturally."

    Comments (-1)

Trouble Sleeping

New In School

Academic Success/Homework/Organization

Caring/Compassion/Respect

  • Between Earth and Sky

    by Joseph Bruchac Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: "Bruchac frames 11 legends of Native American sacred places with a conversation between Little Turtle and his uncle, Old Bear, who says, " 'There are sacred places all around us...They are found in the East and in the North, in the South and in the West, as well as Above, Below, and the place Within. Without those places we lose our balance.' " Bruchac writes in language that is dignified and almost poetic in its simplicity."

    Comments (-1)
  • Each Living Thing

    by Joanne Ryder Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: "A remarkable marriage of spare, poetic text and luminous, detailed paintings. On full-bleed, double-page spreads, Ryder makes a plea for children to respect animals-both those that are easy to love and those that may be frightening. 'Watch out-for toads who lurch/and leap across the road-/please stop to let them pass.' The illustration shows a girl holding up her hand to stop an approaching school bus as the creatures leap to safety. The narrative is a natural for reading aloud-it flows smoothly and is full of imagery. Wolff's vibrant, action-packed paintings are familiar and comforting. She incorporates environmentalism in all of the art-children recycle, garden, and enjoy their surroundings. She depicts a variety of habitats and terrains and each phrase is illustrated with children or a family interacting with nature. This book introduces ecological concerns in a way that is natural and clear to youngsters. A wonderful choice for sharing in libraries, with families, for learning to honor each living thing."

    Comments (-1)
  • Have You Filled a Bucket Today?

    by Carol McCloud Year Published:
    Product Description: Through simple prose and vivid illustrations, this heartwarming book encourages positive behavior as children see how rewarding it is to express daily kindness, appreciation, and love. Bucket filling and dipping are effective metaphors for understanding the effects of our actions and words on the well being of others and ourselves.

    Comments (-1)
  • Julie

    by Jean Craighead George Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: "George continues the story begun in Newbery-award winning Julie of the Wolves (HarperCollins, 1974) with the young woman's return to her father's home in Kangik, Alaska. As she becomes reaquainted with Kapugen, she tries to accept the fact that he killed her beloved wolf Amaroq. She must also come to terms with her father's abandonment of some traditional Eskimo ways in order to help the local population survive, his new wife (a white woman), and a new romantic interest of her own. Julie is no longer a loner; she, too, learns about being a part of a community, one that is struggling to exist in a difficult and changing environment. But she also vows to protect the surviving wolves and move them to a place where they will not threaten her father's herd of musk-oxen. Although there is purpose (nearing obsession) to Julie's actions, readers must pay attention to the frequent shifts in the location of the wolf pack and the all-important caribou, vital to both the survival of the wolves and the village. As Julie seeks to move the pack leader, Kapu, and the other wolves closer to a food source, readers may sense some resemblance to the scenes of gaining trust in the earlier title and some may question Julie's interference with the natural order of things (an intervention she cannot possibly maintain). Still, the sense of place and of a people is strong throughout. In the end, her father changes his philosophy from needing to kill the wolves to releasing his oxen into the wild, a conclusion that is a bit abrupt but thoroughly satisfying."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
    Comments (-1)
  • Listen to the Wind

    by Greg Mortenson Year Published:
    From Booklist: *Starred Review* Best-selling author Mortenson told his remarkable story in the adult book Three Cups of Tea (2006). After getting lost while trying to climb the mountain K2, he found himself in a Pakistani village. This, as it turned out was the beginning of a different journey. Here Mortenson and Roth retell his remarkable story through the eyes of Pakistani children. After being rescued and nursed to health by the villagers, Mortenson wonders what he can do to thank them. Advised by a wise elder to “listen to the wind,” Mortenson becomes aware of children’s voices, children he has helped teach during his convalescence, and he decides to build them a school. The steep terrain and remote setting present nearly overwhelming obstacles, but finally, the school is opened with great celebration.

    Comments (-1)
  • The 100th Costumer

    by Byung-Gyu Kim and K.T. Hao Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Ben Bear and Chris Croc decide to open a restaurant. The menu features two specialties: pizza and desserts. Their first customers are a boy and his grandmother, who asks, Which is the least expensive? and then orders a small pizza for her grandson, saying that she isn't hungry. Recognizing her unselfishness, the owners pretend that the child has won a free pizza and dessert because of his status as the 100th customer of the day, so that he may share the bounty with his grandmother. He decides to repeat the experience the next day by waiting outside the eatery to count customers as they arrive. Ben Bear and Chris Croc devise a way to help him learn what the old woman taught them: a full heart is more satisfying than a full stomach.

    Comments (-1)
  • The Granny-Man

    by Judy Schachner Year Published:
    From Publishers Weekly" "The Siamese cat Simon may be getting on in years ("With the exception of his nose, most of his parts had stopped working long ago"), but this beloved family pet is enjoying a comfortable retirement. He spends his days dreaming of his long and happy life ("full of mice, full of hisses, full of hugs, and full of kisses"), and his adoring family carts him around in a baby stroller and buys a bib to catch the toothless puss's dribbles. But the geriatric cat's sedate golden years dramatically transform when a kitten arrives. Simon's tender care of his perky charge earns him a new name: the Grannyman. Schachner's (I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie) affectionate prose inspires a series of softly shaded pastel portraits of the title character. With his lopsided ears, huge blue eyes and quizzical expression, the creaky Simon is a fetching fellow. The visual riffs on the text will strike a chord of recognition with cat lovers everywhere; for instance, a quartet of images exhibits Simon enjoying the "heat treatments" his family provides (basking under a lampshade and on a windowsill, sprawled on a radiator and a stovetop). This story of old age revered and rejuvenated is a pleasure from the ends of its whiskers to the tip of its tail"

    Comments (-1)
  • The Kindness Quilt

    by Nancy Elizabeth Wallace Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Kindergarten-Grade 2 The story begins with Mrs. Bloom reading Aesop's The Lion and the Mouse to her students. After discussing it, she instructs them to perform an act of kindness, draw a picture of it, and then share the details about it with the class. Minna performs many acts of kindness and cannot decide which one to use for her project. In a burst of creative genius, she decides to create a quilt featuring a number of them. Her classmates love the idea and continue to piece together a classroom patchwork. The enthusiasm then spreads to the whole school. As the project grows, so does the quilt, taking over a bulletin board and moving onto a hallway wall.

    Comments (-1)
  • Those Shoes

    by Maribeth Boelts Year Published:
    All Jeremy wants is a pair of those shoes, the ones everyone at school seems to be wearing. Though Jeremy’s grandma says they don’t have room for "want," just "need," when his old shoes fall apart at school, he is more determined than ever to have those shoes, even a thrift-shop pair that are much too small. But sore feet aren’t much fun, and Jeremy soon sees that the things he has — warm boots, a loving grandma, and the chance to help a friend — are worth more than the things he wants.

    Comments (-1)

Perseverance/Courage

Negative Behaviors

Divorce/Seperation

  • Dinosaurs Divorce

    by Marc Brown and Laurie Krasny Brown Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Sympathetic to the full range of feelings that divorce produces, the authors use evocative cartoon dinosaur characters to convey their message. Chapters address such concerns as why parents divorce, what will happen to "me," where will holidays be celebrated, living in two homes, etc. Expressively illustrated with accompanying succinct text, this upbeat, straightforward treatment of a potentially confusing, traumatic childhood experience is comprehensive. Prediction: this will become a real "security blanket" for those young readers in need.

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  • Divorce Is Not the End of the World: Zoe's and Evan's Coping Guide for Kids

    by Zoe Stern and Evan Stern Year Published:
    Product Description Zoe and Evan Stern know firsthand how it feels when your parents divorce. When their parents split they knew their lives would change but they didn't know how. A few years later, when they were 15 and 13 years old, they decided to share their experience in this positive and practical guide for kids. With some help from their mom, Zoe and Evan write about topics like guilt, anger, fear, adjusting to different rules in different houses, dealing with special occasions like birthdays, adapting to stepparents and blended families, and much more. Including updates from grown-up Zoe and Evan 10 years later, this honest guide will reassure children of divorce that, though it may seem it sometimes, it's not the end of the world. Ages 9-12

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  • Mama and Daddy Bear's Divorce

    by Cornelia Maude Spelman Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: PreSchool-Grade 1 This book provides reassurance that, as painful and confusing as a divorce may be, it does not mean that both parents will no longer be part of a youngster's life. In a series of short sentences, readers learn about Dinah's favorite people (her mama, her daddy, and her big sister); her favorite activities; and her favorite things (her stuffed rabbit and her red sandals). The words used to describe the divorce and what it means are carefully chosen, and the expressions on the bear characters' faces are appropriately sad. However, the message of this book is that life goes on. And so, while Dinah misses Daddy when she is with her mother, and misses Mama when she is with her father, some things, including her stuffed animal and red sandals, remain the same. The family celebrates some special occasions together, such as Dinah's birthday, and the youngster realizes that her parents and her sister love her very much.

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  • My Family's Changing

    by Pat Thomas Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Kindergarten-Grade 4 This plainspoken text by a psychotherapist and counselor deals with the basic problems and feelings accompanying a divorce and is directed to children and those adults who are helping them confront this traumatic experience. The signs of an impending marital separation; experiences that may occur with divided custody; and common emotions of sorrow, anger, and loneliness are addressed.

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  • Standing on My Own Two Feet: A Child's Affirmation of Love in the Midst of Divorce

    by Tamara Schmitz Year Published:
    Product Description: Addison is a regular kid whose parents are going through a divorce, but he knows that no matter what happens, his parents will always love him. The text in this beautifully illustrated picture book is inspiring, gentle, and uplifting, and teaches kids that having two homes to live in can be just as great as having two strong feet to stand on.

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  • Two Homes

    by Claire Masurel Year Published:
    From Booklist: Ages 2-5. Young Alex introduces himself and his parents, then announces that he has two homes: sometimes he lives with Daddy (in a suburban house) and sometimes with Mommy (in a city apartment). The discussion of his two homes sets up the book's comfortable dual structure: "I have two rooms. My room at Daddy's. My room at Mommy's . . . I have two bathrooms. I have a toothbrush at Daddy's. I have a toothbrush at Mommy's." Each spread includes complementary pictures that show the boy engaged in similar activities at both locales. The ending affirms that his parents love Alex, no matter where he is and no matter where they are.

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  • Two Homes

    by Claire Masurel Year Published:
    From Booklist: Ages 2-5. Young Alex introduces himself and his parents, then announces that he has two homes: sometimes he lives with Daddy (in a suburban house) and sometimes with Mommy (in a city apartment). The discussion of his two homes sets up the book's comfortable dual structure: "I have two rooms. My room at Daddy's. My room at Mommy's . . . I have two bathrooms. I have a toothbrush at Daddy's. I have a toothbrush at Mommy's." Each spread includes complementary pictures that show the boy engaged in similar activities at both locales. The ending affirms that his parents love Alex, no matter where he is and no matter where they are.

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  • Was It the Chocolate Pudding?: A Story For Little Kids About Divorce

    by Sandra Levins Year Published:
    Product Description: With childlike innocence and humor, a young narrator living with his single father and brother explains divorce and it's grown-up words, like: "New Arrangement","Ideal Situation",and "Differences" from a kid's point-of-view. Special emphasis is placed on the fact that divorce is not the child's fault, that it is a grown-up problem. Deals with practical day-to-day matters such as single-family homes, joint custody, child-care issues, and misunderstandings. Includes Note to Parents. Full-color illustrations through-out. For ages 2-6.

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  • What in the World Do You Do When Your Parents Divorce? A Survival Guide for Kids

    by Kent Winchester and Roberta Beyer Year Published:
    Product Description: This companion to the Juggling Act parent's book is specially aimed at kids ages 7-12. It explains divorce, new living arrangements, and other basics to help children understand what's happening in their lives. With honesty and simplicity, the authors help kids realize that divorce isn't their fault, strong emotions are okay, and families can survive difficult changes. Written to and for kids, this book is also recommended for parents, educators, counselors, and youth workers.

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Wisdom

Individuality

  • Anastasia Has the Answers

    by Lois Lowry Year Published:
    From Publishers Weekly: The sixth story about irrepressible Anastasia Krupnik begins with Anastasia deciding she cannot attend the funeral of her Aunt Rose in California. Anastasia, it turns out, is afraid not only of flying, but of dying. So the Krupniks leave Anastasia and her brother with a sitter, and she must face her fears and problems without her parents for several days. Determined to become a journalist, Anastasia believes she should have "all the answers," and is dismayed to discover things do not always go her way. She's humiliated in gym class because she's the only one who can't climb the ropes, and, upon her parent's return, her plan to fix up her newly single Uncle George with her friend Daphne's divorced mother falls flat. But in a hilarious ending that only Anastasia could set in motion, she not only puts things right, but realizes that a lot of people consider her very special.

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  • Ellison the Elephant

    by Eric Drachman Year Published:
    Product Description: Little Ellison just wants to sound like everyone else. With encouragement from Mom and playful coaxing from his imaginary friend, Weasel, Ellison finds his very own voice -a jazzy sound that charms and entertains all within earshot. Ellison's mom reminds us all that it's okay to be unusual. In fact, she explains, "All the greatest elephants in history were unusual - that's what made them great!"

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  • Elmer

    by David McKee Year Published:
    From Publishers Weekly: Elmer the elephant is a colorful character. His heady optimism and unbridled sense of humor keep the entire community in a cheery mood. And Elmer's unusual multicolored checkerboard hide is the wonder of all the other elephants, who are characteristically gray. In spite of his sunny disposition, Elmer begins to feel conspicuous. He starts to believe the others are laughing at him because of his crazy patchwork coat. When Elmer discovers a bush in the jungle with elephant-colored berries, he shakes the bush and rolls in a berry mash until he is as gray as the others. Now no one seems to notice him; for a time he enjoys his anonymity, but after a while he begins to realize just how quiet and dull things are when he's not around. Finally the practical joker in Elmer emerges, and he soon has the whole gang laughing again. McKee's gentle humor and love of irony are in full force in this celebration of individuality and laughter.

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  • Giraffes Can’t Dance

    by Giles Andreae Year Published:
    Product Description: Gerald the giraffe doesn't really have delusions of grandeur. He just wants to dance. But his knees are crooked and his legs are thin, and all the other animals mock him when he approaches the dance floor at the annual Jungle Dance. "Hey, look at clumsy Gerald," they sneer. "Oh, Gerald, you're so weird." Poor Gerald slinks away as the chimps cha-cha, rhinos rock 'n' roll, and warthogs waltz. But an encouraging word from an unlikely source shows this glum giraffe that those who are different "just need a different song," and soon he is prancing and sashaying and boogying to moon music (with a cricket accompanist). In the vein of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Gerald's fickle "friends" quickly decide he's worthy of their attention again. With this rhyming, poignant (in a cartoonish way) tale, Giles Andreae, author of Rumble in the Jungle, and numerous other picture books, shows insecure young readers that everyone can be wonderful, even those that march to the beat of a different cricket.

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  • Heart of a Champion

    by Carl Deuker Year Published:
    From Publishers Weekly: Baseball becomes a metaphor for life in Deuker's thought-provoking testimonial to friendship and filial love. Narrator Seth, who lost his father at age seven, becomes a baseball fanatic five years later, when he starts playing ball with Jimmy Winter and Jimmy's perfectionist father. But Mr. Winter is hardly perfect: an alcoholic, he abruptly moves out and stops seeing Jimmy, then months later shows up, drunk, at a ballgame. Jimmy subsequently moves away, but Seth has been so strongly influenced that he's even eligible for the honors program in high school. Seth joins junior varsity baseball and is thrilled when Jimmy moves back and also makes the team. They start attending weekly beer-drinking parties at the home of teammate Todd. To his despair, Seth gets left in J.V. while Jimmy and Todd become varsity stars, even though they're suspended once for drinking. Eventually Seth makes the varsity squad and, along with Todd, quits drinking. But even with athletic stardom beckoning, Jimmy doesn't sober up, and the consequences are tragic.

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  • I Like Myself

    by Karen Beaumont & David Catrow Year Published:

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  • It's Okay To Be Different

    by Todd Parr Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: For anyone who ever doubted it, Todd Parr is here to tell us all that it's okay to be different. With his signature artistic style, featuring brightly colored, childlike figures outlined in heavy black, Parr shows readers over and over that just about anything goes. From the sensitive ("It's okay to be adopted"--the accompanying illustration shows a kangaroo with a puppy in her pouch) to the downright silly ("It's okay to eat macaroni and cheese in the bathtub"), kids of every shape, size, color, family makeup, and background will feel included in this gentle, witty book.

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  • The Boxer

    by Kathleen Karr Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: In the Lower East Side tenements of Manhattan in the late 1800s, there is employment for the city's huge immigrant population--except it's mostly sweatshop labor for little pay. Fifteen-year-old Johnny Woods is desperate to find enough work to support his fatherless family. When he notices a sign in a bar window asking for young men to try their fighting skills, he investigates, hoping to win the five dollar prize. He is unluckily arrested during his first fight, but ironically his luck turns when he meets former lightweight champion Michael O'Shaunnessey in jail. O'Shaunnessey recognizes Johnny's raw talent and begins training him as a serious boxer. Once out of the clink, Johnny is winning fights, working regularly in the posh uptown New York Athletic Club, and saving money for a new home for his family in Brooklyn. But then Johnny's winning concentration is shot with the return of his alcoholic father. Does he have the stamina to continue as the family breadwinner, confront his father, and still win in the ring? A Rocky for the late 19th century, The Boxer is a good solid story with plenty of heart

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  • The Little Red Hen

    by Paul Galdone Year Published:

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  • Winners And Losers

    by Stephen Hoffius Year Published:
    From Publishers Weekly: Curtis is shocked when Daryl Wagner, his best friend and high school track teammate, collapses from cardiac arrest during a tough race. Good-looking, popular, an all-around athlete and A-student, Daryl has seemed the embodiment of perfect health, and findings of an irregular heart are in sharp contrast to his youthful vigor. Mr. Wagner, the boys' intensely competitive personal coach, now shifts his focus onto Curtis--training him harder and elevating him to "second son" status, a position both teenagers resent.

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Cooperation

Compassion

  • Crazy Lady!

    by Jane Leslie Conly Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Grade 5-9-- Vernon's father is too busy holding his large family together to notice the boy's academic failures, and his siblings are either too young or too preoccupied with their own affairs to help. So, Vernon finds himself hanging out on his Baltimore street corner, quietly desperate about school but powerless to resolve his problems. He and the other neighborhood boys like to taunt Maxine and Roland, an alcoholic and her retarded son. When Vernon supports the woman's argument with their grocer one day, he's embarrassed both by his previous behavior and her kind remarks about his dead mother. He blurts out his troubles and she introduces him to Miss Annie, a retired teacher, who tutors him but asks as repayment that he help Maxine and Roland. With Vernon's assistance, the boy is able to participate in the Special Olympics. When Maxine appears, drunk and abusive, it is the final straw for Roland's teacher and the welfare authorities, and he is removed from his mother's neglectful custody. Giving up his needy friend unlocks Vernon's unrealized anger at his mother for dying and leaving him, but he finds solace in his father, who has been there for him all along. Vernon's story is an interesting and involving one that reveals the enormous capacity of teens for both cruelty and compassion. Its truth reveals that each of us has felt the pain of exclusion and the liberation of acceptance and love.

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  • Island of the Blue Dolphins

    by Scott O'Dell Year Published:
    Product Description: This is the story of Karana, the Indian girl who lived alone for years on the Island of the Blue Dolphins. Year after year, she watched one season pass into another and waited for a ship to take her away.

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  • Knots on a Counting Rope

    by Bill Martin, Jr. and John Archambault Year Published:
    From Publishers Weekly: Gathered near a campfire under a canopy of stars, a Navaho Indian boy hears the tale of his birth from his grandfather. Born on a windy night, the child was weak and frail. In the early morning, Grandfather brought him out to meet the morning. Two blue horses galloped by, stopped and looked at him; the baby raised his arms to them. Grandfather said, "This boy child will not die. The great blue horses have given him the strength to live." Named Boy-Strength-of-Blue-Horses, the child later needs that well of strength to deal with the fact that he is blind.

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  • Nana Upstairs and Nana Downstairs

    by Tomie dePaola Year Published:
    From Booklist: Originally published in 1973, this autobiographical picture book was one of the first to introduce very young children to the concept of death. Given its graceful treatment of a difficult subject, it has been a parental staple ever since, and a new generations of readers will be glad to discover this timeless tale in a lovely new edition. In an appended note, dePaola says he approached this project "as a completely new book." Thus, the format is larger than formerly, the pictures have been re-done in full color, and even the text has been slightly modified, though the story remains the same: every Sunday four-year-old Tommy's family goes to visit his grandparents. His grandmother is always busy downstairs, but his great-grandmother is always to be found in bed upstairs, because she is 94 years old. Tommy loves both of his nanas and the time he spends with them. He is desolate when his upstairs nana dies, but his mother comforts him by explaining that "she will come back in your memory whenever you think about her." Although dePaola's book is a nostalgic tribute to his own family, its theme--that not only people but our love for them survives in our memories--is universally true and important.- Michael Cart

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  • Stargirl

    by Jerry Spinelli Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: "She was homeschooling gone amok." "She was an alien." "Her parents were circus acrobats." These are only a few of the theories concocted to explain Stargirl Caraway, a new 10th grader at Arizona's Mica Area High School who wears pioneer dresses and kimonos to school, strums a ukulele in the cafeteria, laughs when there are no jokes, and dances when there is no music. The whole school, not exactly a "hotbed of nonconformity," is stunned by her, including our 16-year-old narrator Leo Borlock: "She was elusive. She was today. She was tomorrow. She was the faintest scent of a cactus flower, the flitting shadow of an elf owl." In time, incredulity gives way to out-and-out adoration as the student body finds itself helpless to resist Stargirl's wide-eyed charm, pure-spirited friendliness, and penchant for celebrating the achievements of others. In the ultimate high school symbol of acceptance, she is even recruited as a cheerleader. Popularity, of course, is a fragile and fleeting state, and bit by bit, Mica sours on their new idol. Why is Stargirl showing up at the funerals of strangers? Worse, why does she cheer for the opposing basketball teams? The growing hostility comes to a head when she is verbally flogged by resentful students on Leo's televised Hot Seat show in an episode that is too terrible to air. While the playful, chin-held-high Stargirl seems impervious to the shunning that ensues, Leo, who is in the throes of first love (and therefore scornfully deemed "Starboy"), is not made of such strong stuff: "I became angry. I resented having to choose. I refused to choose. I imagined my life without her and without them, and I didn't like it either way."

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  • The Giving Tree

    by Shel Silverstein Year Published:
    Product Description: "Once there was a tree . . . and she loved a little boy." So begins a story of unforgettable perception, beautifully written and illustrated by the gifted and versatile Shel Silverstein. Every day the boy would come to the tree to eat her apples, swing from her branches, or slide down her trunk . . . and the tree was happy. But as the boy grew older he began to want more from the tree, and the tree gave and gave. This is a tender story, touched with sadness, aglow with consolation. Shel Silverstein has created a moving parable for readers of all ages that offers an affecting interpretation of the gift of giving and a serene acceptance of another’s capacity to love in return.

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  • The Teddy Bear

    by David McPhail Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: A young boy leaves his beloved teddy bear in a diner. A homeless man finds it in the trash can and takes care of it by tucking it in his coat pocket and sleeping with it in the dumpster. One day, he leaves the teddy bear on a park bench just when the child and his parents happen to be passing by. The youngster is pleased to find his old friend and rescues him, but when the man cries out, "Where is my bear?" the child returns the stuffed animal to him. This act of sharing and compassion will be treasured by young and old.

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  • Through Grandpa’s Eyes

    by Patricia MacLachlan Year Published:
    Product Description: On John's visits to Grandpa's house, his blind grandfather shares with him the special way he sees and moves in the world.

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  • When I Was Young in the Mountains

    by Cynthia Rylant Year Published:
    Product Description: "An evocative remembrance of the simple pleasures in country living; splashing in the swimming hole, taking baths in the kitchen, sharing family times, each is eloquently portrayed here in both the misty-hued scenes and in the poetic text."--Association for Childhood Education

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Self-Discipline

Honor

  • Alejandro's Gift

    by Richard E. Albert Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Grade 1-4-Alejandro, a man in his 60s, lives in a small adobe house beside an isolated desert road. His only companion is a burro. To ease his loneliness, he tends to his garden. One day, a ground squirrel approaches the garden to drink from its furrows, followed by wood rats, pocket gophers, jackrabbits, kangaroo rats, pocket mice, roadrunners, gila woodpeckers, and thrashers. Time passes more quickly, and Alejandro enjoys his new companions. However, he soon realizes that they come to him for water, not for company, and sets out to dig a water hole for them. Albert's simple and poetic text evokes the silence and emptiness in Alejandro's life. He grows to understand his interdependence with the land and its creatures as he lives among them.

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  • Ella Enchanted

    by Gail Carson Levine Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: At birth, Ella is inadvertently cursed by an imprudent fairy named Lucinda, who bestows on her the "gift" of obedience. Anything anyone tells her to do, Ella must obey. Another girl might have been cowed by this affliction, but not feisty Ella: "Instead of making me docile, Lucinda's curse made a rebel of me. Or perhaps I was that way naturally." When her beloved mother dies, leaving her in the care of a mostly absent and avaricious father, and later, a loathsome stepmother and two treacherous stepsisters, Ella's life and well-being seem in grave peril. But her intelligence and saucy nature keep her in good stead as she sets out on a quest for freedom and self-discovery, trying to track down Lucinda to undo the curse, fending off ogres, befriending elves, and falling in love with a prince along the way. Yes, there is a pumpkin coach, a glass slipper, and a happily ever after, but this is the most remarkable, delightful, and profound version of Cinderella you've ever read.

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  • Frindle

    by Andrew Clements Year Published:
    From Booklist: Gr. 3^-6. Ten-year-old Nick Allen has a reputation for devising clever, time-wasting schemes guaranteed to distract even the most conscientious teacher. His diversions backfire in Mrs. Granger's fifth-grade class, however, resulting in Nick being assigned an extra report on how new entries are added to the dictionary. Surprisingly, the research provides Nick with his best idea ever, and he decides to coin his own new word. Mrs. Granger has a passion for vocabulary, but Nick's (and soon the rest of the school's) insistence on referring to pens as "frindles" annoys her greatly. The war of words escalates--resulting in after-school punishments, a home visit from the principal, national publicity, economic opportunities for local entrepreneurs, and, eventually, inclusion of frindle in the dictionary. Slightly reminiscent of Avi's Nothing but the Truth (1991), this is a kinder, gentler story in which the two sides eventually come to a private meeting of the minds and the power of language triumphs over both. Sure to be popular with a wide range of readers, this will make a great read-aloud as well. -Kay Weisman

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  • Gregory Cool

    by Caroline Binch Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Grade 1-3-Gregory, a typically cool American kid, arrives in Tobago for a first-ever visit with his native grandparents and is simultaneously homesick, critical, and withdrawn. Cousin Lennox's cheery and helpful ways don't seem to make him feel any better. Everything is so strange and unfamiliar-food, games, and sleeping arrangements. Finally, a day at the beach turns the tide when a false alarm of sharks and the friendly guidance of some local fishermen help Gregory to appreciate his relatives. By the end of the day, the boys are friends and four-weeks vacation hardly seems long enough.

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  • Henry's Freedom Box

    by Ellen Levine Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Grade 2–5—Inspired by an actual 1830s lithograph, this beautifully crafted picture book briefly relates the story of Henry "Box" Brown's daring escape from slavery. Torn from his mother as a child, and then forcibly separated from his wife and children as an adult, a heartsick and desperate Brown conspired with abolitionists and successfully traveled north to Philadelphia in a packing crate. His journey took just over one full day, during which he was often sideways or upside down in a wooden crate large enough to hold him, but small enough not to betray its contents. The story ends with a reimagining of the lithograph that inspired it, in which Henry Brown emerges from his unhappy confinement—in every sense of the word—and smiles upon his arrival in a comfortable Pennsylvania parlor.

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  • Night Visitors

    by Ed Young Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Grade 1-3?Both the title and the wonderfully evocative jacket art hint at the inscrutable Chinese folktale within. When ants invade the family's rice storehouse, Ho Kuan's father threatens to drown the insects' nest if the boy is unable to seal the walls and floor. The ensuing events begin at midnight, when black-armored soldiers summon Ho to His Majesty's Palace, a journey of many days. The King is so impressed with the young man's kindness that he gives his daughter to him in marriage. The couple's happy days are cut short by an attack of red-armored warriors during which Ho's wife is killed. After training the King's army in the martial arts to drive away the invaders, he returns home with a promise from the King of finding a token of his gratitude under a cassia tree. Ho awakes believing the sequence was a dream until a line of ants leads him to the tree and a jar of silver coins, which he spends on sealing the storehouse.

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  • Running Out of Time

    by Margaret Peterson Haddix Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Grade 5-8?This absorbing novel develops an unusual premise into the gripping story of a young girl's efforts to save her family and friends from a deadly disease. Jessie Keyser, 13, believes that the year is 1840. In truth, she and her family, along with a small group of others, live in a reconstructed village viewed by unseen modern tourists and used as an experimental site by unethical scientists. Jessie discovers the truth when her mother asks her to leave the village and seek medical help for the diptheria epidemic that has struck the children of the community. Jessie must cope with the shock of her discovery; her unfamiliarity with everyday phenomena such as cars, telephones, and television; and the unscrupulous men who are manipulating the villagers.

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  • The Relatives Came

    by Cynthia Rylant Year Published:
    Product Description: The relatives' station wagon: it smelled like a real car, looked like a rainbow, and was roomy enough for a crowd. Lucky! Because a big crowd in all shapes and sizes piled into that old wagon at four o'clock one summer morning and piled out of it the next day at their relatives' place on the north side of the mountains. All in good moods. The visitors settled in everywhere throughout the house, laughing and making music and hugging everyone from the kitchen to the front room. And they stayed for weeks.

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Honesty

  • A Big, Fat Enormous Lie

    by Marjorie Weinman Sharmat Year Published:
    Product Description: A child's simple lie grows to enormous proportions.

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  • A Day’s Work

    by Eve Bunting Year Published:
    From Publishers Weekly: Francisco, trying to find work for his grandfather, or abuelo, who has just arrived from Mexico, acts as a liaison between Abuelo, who doesn't speak English, and Ben, who wants to hire a gardener for a day's work. Eager to earn the badly needed pay, Francisco assures Ben that his grandfather is a skilled gardener (Abuelo is in fact a carpenter). Returning at the end of the day, Ben is shocked to discover that Francisco and Abuelo stripped his field of the plants and left the weeds. Abuelo is also angered, learning only now that Francisco had lied to Ben, and refuses payment until they have done the job correctly. Recognizing the older man's integrity, Ben rewards Abuelo and Francisco with the promise of "more than just one day's work." Says Ben of the plants: "The roots are still there. If they've replanted early, they'll be alright." Similarly, Francisco is given a chance to start over.

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  • A Wind in the Door

    by Madeleine L’Engle Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review "There are dragons in the twins' vegetable garden," announces six-year-old Charles Wallace Murry in the opening sentence of The Wind in the Door. His older sister, Meg, doubts it. She figures he's seen something strange, but dragons--a "dollop of dragons," a "drove of dragons," even a "drive of dragons"--seem highly unlikely. As it turns out, Charles Wallace is right about the dragons--though the sea of eyes (merry eyes, wise eyes, ferocious eyes, kitten eyes, dragon eyes, opening and closing) and wings (in constant motion) is actually a benevolent cherubim (of a singularly plural sort) named Proginoskes who has come to help save Charles Wallace from a serious illness. In her usual masterful way, Madeleine L'Engle jumps seamlessly from a child's world of liverwurst and cream cheese sandwiches to deeply sinister, cosmic battles between good and evil. Children will revel in the delectably chilling details--including hideous scenes in which a school principal named Mr. Jenkins is impersonated by the Echthroi (the evil forces that tear skies, snuff out light, and darken planets). When it becomes clear that the Echthroi are putting Charles Wallace in danger, the only logical course of action is for Meg and her dear friend Calvin O'Keefe to become small enough to go inside Charles Wallace's body--into one of his mitochondria--to see what's going wrong with his farandolae. In an illuminating flash on the interconnectedness of all things and the relativity of size, we realize that the tiniest problem can have mammoth, even intergalactic ramifications. Can this intrepid group voyage through time and space and muster all their strength of character to save Charles Wallace? It's an exhilarating, enlightening, suspenseful journey that no child should miss.

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  • Blackwater Swamp

    by Bill Wallace Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Grade 3-6-A fifth-grade boy living in a small Louisiana town narrates this story of adventure and mystery. The ingredients include a spooky swamp, a mysterious old "witch" woman, and a rash of unsolved break-ins and robberies. A subplot is Ted's struggle to find an appropriate friend in his new town. Jimmy, interesting but also rude and ill-behaved, accompanies him to spy on the witch, who has a shack on an island in Blackwater Swamp. The plot turns ugly when Jimmy's redneck cousin Bubba leads a crew of his friends, lynch-mob style, to burn out and torment the old woman. Ted predictably comes to her rescue, but ends up being protected by her. Ironically, his new best friend could be the witch herself, who is merely the small town's only homeless person, an elderly black woman.

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  • Jackalope

    by Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Crummel Year Published:
    Product Description: This story, a cross between a tall tale and a fractured fable, is narrated by a traveling armadillo, and abounds in laughs and lessons. Jackrabbit is unhappy about not being fierce. Wishing on a star gets him the attention of a vegetable-punning fairy godrabbit ("Now, lettuce see!") who grants him a pair of horns (hence the jackalope) with the caveat that he not tell lies. Lying, naturally, makes them grow. Coyote happens along, and as Jack dives for his old hiding place, his horns get stuck in the ground. Between them, Godrabbit and Jack foil Coyote and live reasonably happily ever after (punning all the way).

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  • Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire

    by Gordon Korman Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Grade 2-4 , In Korman's latest offering, the title's familiar childhood taunt is directed at Zoe Bent, the biggest liar in Mrs. Moore's third-grade class. Zoe feels as though she needs to invent a fantastic explanation for being late to school and claims to have an eagle's nest in her backyard to impress her classmates. Her lies inevitably lead to telling more lies to cover up earlier ones. As a result, no one believes her when she is telling the truth. With the help of a friend, Zoe eventually realizes that she has a special gift, a great imagination.

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  • On My Honor

    by Marion Dane Bauer Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Grade 4-6 Twelve-year-old Joel has unwillingly agreed to bike out to the state park with his daredevil friend Tony. "On his honor," he promises his father to be careful, knowing that Tony wants them to climb the dangerous park bluffs. When they arrive, however, Tony abruptly changes his mind and heads for the river. With his promise jangling in his mind, Joel follows Tony in for a swim. Tony drowns in the dirty, turbulent water, leaving Joel to face his guilty conscience, and his father, alone. In this short but solid novel, Bauer effectively portrays the dilemma of pre-adolescents, old enough to want to meet their own challenges without adult interference, young enough to want grownup protection and reassurance. Joel understands only too well the moral dilemma he faces, but he is so bound by peer pressure that wrong choices and tragedy are almost inevitable.

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  • Pinocchio

    by Margaret Hillert Year Published:

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  • The Empty Pot

    by Demi Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Grade 1-3-- When the Chinese emperor proclaims that his successor will be the child who grows the most beautiful flowers from the seeds the emperor distributes, Ping is overjoyed. Like the emperor, he loves flowers and anything he plants bursts into bloom. But the emperor's seed will not grow, despite months of loving care, and Ping goes before the emperor carrying only his empty pot. The emperor ignores the beautiful blossoms brought by the other children and chooses Ping, revealing that the seeds he handed out had been cooked and could not grow. This simple story with its clear moral is illustrated with beautiful paintings

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  • Too Many Tamales

    by Gary Soto Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: Maria is feeling so grown-up, wearing her mother's apron and helping to knead the masa for the Christmas corn tamales. Her mother even let Maria wear some perfume and lipstick for the big family celebration that evening. When her mother takes off her diamond ring so it won't become coated with the messy masa, Maria decides that life would be perfect if she could wear the ring, too. Trouble begins when she sneakily slips the sparkly ring on her thumb and resumes her kneading. Uh oh. It is not until later that night, after all the tamales have been cooked and after all her cousins and relatives have arrived, that Maria suddenly realizes what must have happened to the precious ring.

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Patience

  • Babushka’s Doll

    by Patricia Polacco Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: PreSchool-Grade 1-- When Natasha wants something, she wants it now --not after her grandmother, Babushka, has finished her chores. Babushka gets tired of this attitude, and finally goes off to the market, leaving Natasha to play with a special doll that she keeps on a high shelf. The doll comes to life and subjects Natasha to the same sort of insistent whining that Natasha used on Babushka. The girl learns her lesson and turns out "to be quite nice after all."

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  • Dear America: A Coal Miner’s Bride the Diary of Anetka Kaminska

    by Susan Campbell Bartoletti Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: Plucky Anetka is determined to thrive in her new life in an arranged marriage to a Pennsylvania coal miner. In spite of the fact that her husband doesn't love her, his three daughters still mourn their dead mother, and she has left behind everything she knows and loves in Poland, this 13-year-old redhead rolls up her sleeves and gets down to the backbreaking business of keeping house. Working conditions in the mines are horrendous and the labor movement is rumbling; nearly every day, wives watch in frightened yet resigned anticipation as the Black Maria, the "death wagon," rattles down the street to the newest widow's door. When the Black Maria shows up at Anetka's shanty just a few months after her wedding, she must dig deeper into her reserves of strength to carry on. Luckily, a young man named Leon has been patiently waiting in the wings. Their relationship is sweetly immature--until the very end, she persists in trying to convince herself she can't stand him because he teases her.

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  • Just Ella

    by Margaret Haddix Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: In Just Ella, Margaret Peterson Haddix puts a spin on the traditional tale of the glass slippers. In her version, Ella (sans "Cinder") finds her own way to the ball (there was no fairy godmother, despite the rumors) and wins the heart of the prince. But now she is finding that life at the palace as Prince Charming's betrothed is not as great as she thought it was going to be. In fact, it's downright boring for a self-reliant and active girl to do needlework all day or listen to instructions on court etiquette from the strict and cold Madame Bisset. Worst of all, Ella is beginning to suspect that Charming's beautiful blue eyes and golden hair are attached to a head with nothing in it. Her young tutor Jed, however, talks with her about serious things that really matter. Ella finally gets up the courage to announce to Charming that she doesn't want to go through with the wedding, but when she finds herself locked in the dungeon she realizes it's not that easy to walk away from a politically arranged marriage. In the end, as in all good fairy tales, our heroine and hero do manage to live happily ever after--but with a twist.

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  • King of the Wind

    by Marguerite Henry Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: Grade 4-8-The Newbery Medal-winning tale about a stallion, a stable boy, and their globe-spanning adventures.

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  • Salt in His Shoes

    by Deloris Jordan with Roslyn M. Jordan Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: Before basketball star Michael Jordan's name was uttered reverently in households all over the planet, young Michael was just a shrimpy kid trying to play ball with the big boys in the neighborhood. Tired of being teased by the biggest boy on the court, Michael is convinced the only solution is to grow taller. His mama smilingly suggests putting salt in his shoes and saying a prayer every night. His daddy tells young Michael that "Being taller may help you play a little better, but not as much as practice, determination, and giving your best will. Those are the things that make you a real winner." And so they are. At 6-foot-6, Michael may not have grown up to be the tallest player on the court, but he sure did turn out to be one of the best!

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  • The Art Lesson

    by Tomie dePaola Year Published:
    From Publishers Weekly: A boy named Tommy loves to draw with his Binney & Smith Crayola crayons, and these pictures hang on his side of the room, in his mother's kitchen, at the barber shop where his father works, in the store of his Irish grandparents and in the home of his Italian grandmother Nana. Tommy? Nana? This work of picture-book fiction is really a gem of an autobiography, and readers familiar with dePaola's work will find wonderful, well-placed clues to his lifetime of artistry among these pages. Tommy starts school, and can't wait for the day when the art teacher comes. But there are a couple of hitches: the paints at school are cracked and powdery (and blow "right off the paper"), and the art teacher only lets the children have one piece of paper, on which to "copy" her drawings. Tommy, who has been told by his aunts (twins, who are artists) that real artists never copy, has a crisis. But his teachers (including Tommy's regular classroom teacher) show themselves to be far more understanding than readers could have predicted, and all ends well.

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  • The Cow Who Wouldn’t Come Down

    by Paul Brett Johnson Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: PreSchool-Grade 3-- " 'It's a known fact cows don't fly,' " says Miss Rosemary, but apparently Gertrude has not heard. She's the picture of bovine grace as she glides over the farm cutting figure eights, and simply radiates contentment. Miss Rosemary, on the other hand, is concerned about what the neighbors will think and wonders how she could possibly milk a flying cow. With dogged determination, the elderly woman sets about bringing Gertrude down. After several nearly disastrous attempts, she begins a subtler campaign by bringing in a substitute "cow."

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  • The Great Gilly Hopkins

    by Katherine Paterson Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: Gilly Hopkins is a determined-to-be-unpleasant 11-year-old foster kid who the reader can't help but like by the end. Gilly has been in the foster system all her life, and she dreams of getting back to her (as she imagines) wonderful mother. (The mother makes these longings worse by writing the occasional letter.) Gilly is all the more determined to leave after she's placed in a new foster home with a "gross guardian and a freaky kid." But she soon learns about illusions--the hard way.

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Dealing w/ Illness

Bereavement

Initiative

  • 14 Cows for America

    by Carmen Agra Deedy Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: "Kimeli Naiyomah returned home to his Maasai village from New York City with news of 9/11 terrorist attacks. His story prompted the villagers to give a heartfelt gift to help America heal. Deedy and Gonzalez bring Naiyomah's story to life with pithy prose and vibrant illustrations. Each block of text consists of a few short, elegant sentences: "A child asks if he has brought any stories. Kimeli nods. He has brought with him one story. It has burned a hole in his heart." The suspenseful pace is especially striking when surrounded by Gonzalez's exquisite colored pencil and pastel illustrations. The colors of Kenya explode off the page: rich blues, flaming oranges, fire-engine reds, and chocolate browns. Full-page spreads depict the Maasai people and their land so realistically as to be nearly lifelike. Gonzalez manages to break the fourth wall and draw readers in as real-time observers. The book's only flaw is the less-than-concrete ending: "…there is no nation so powerful it cannot be wounded, nor a people so small they cannot offer mighty comfort" is an important message, but not a particularly satisfying one for children. Fortunately, their questions will be answered by Naiyomah's endnote, and it provides a fitting conclusion to this breathtaking chronicle."

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  • Abel's Island

    by William Steig Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: "One summer day, newlywed mice Abel and Amanda are out for a picnic in the woods when they are caught in a sudden storm--a "full-fledged, screaming hurricane" to be precise. As they take refuge in a cave, a wind scoops up Amanda's scarf, and Abel foolishly lunges from safety to retrieve it. So begins William Steig's Newbery Honor Book Abel's Island, the ensuing adventures of this rather foppish mouse as he comes head to head with nature. Amazingly, Abel is swept up in a stream, then a river, then eventually marooned on an island (about 12,000 tails long). He is sure that his rescue is imminent: "It's certainly gotten around that Abelard Hassam di Chirico Flint, of the Mossville Flints, is missing," the society mouse speculates. But he is not so lucky. What will this intelligent, imaginative rodent do to get off the island and back to his beloved Amanda? He busies himself with finding ways to get to shore (including bridges, boats, catapults, stepping stones, and gliders); figuring out what he should eat (everything from mulberries to roasted seeds); and investigating where he should take shelter (in a rotten log). As the weeks and months go by, he misses his books, his paintings, his comfortable stuffed chair, his stylish clothes (now damp, torn, and lumpy), but above all his precious wife Amanda, whom he thinks about constantly. As the mouse faces his new life Robinson Crusoe-style, Abel discovers what it's like to be in tune with the natural world as well as his true nature, and what it's like to return, fortified, to his real home and to the arms of the one he loves."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
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  • Frindle

    by Andrew Clements Year Published:
    From Booklist: "Ten-year-old Nick Allen has a reputation for devising clever, time-wasting schemes guaranteed to distract even the most conscientious teacher. His diversions backfire in Mrs. Granger's fifth-grade class, however, resulting in Nick being assigned an extra report on how new entries are added to the dictionary. Surprisingly, the research provides Nick with his best idea ever, and he decides to coin his own new word. Mrs. Granger has a passion for vocabulary, but Nick's (and soon the rest of the school's) insistence on referring to pens as "frindles" annoys her greatly. The war of words escalates--resulting in after-school punishments, a home visit from the principal, national publicity, economic opportunities for local entrepreneurs, and, eventually, inclusion of frindle in the dictionary."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
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  • Hattie Big Sky

    by Kirby Lawson Year Published:
    From Booklist: "In this engaging historical novel set in 1918, 16-year-old orphan Hattie Brooks leaves Iowa and travels to a Montana homestead inherited from her uncle. In the beautiful but harsh setting, she has less than a year to fence and cultivate the land in order to keep it. Neighbors who welcome Hattie help heal the hurt she has suffered from years of feeling unwanted. Chapters open with short articles that Hattie writes for an Iowa newspaper or her lively letters to a friend and possible beau who is in the military in France. The authentic first-person narrative, full of hope and anxiety, effectively portrays Hattie's struggles as a young woman with limited options, a homesteader facing terrible odds, and a loyal citizen confused about the war and the local anti-German bias that endangers her new friends."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
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  • Misty of Chincoteague

    by Marguerite Henry Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: "On an island off the coasts of Virginia and Maryland lives a centuries-old band of wild ponies. Among them is the most mysterious of all, Phantom, a rarely seen mare that eludes all efforts to capture her--that is, until a young boy and girl lay eyes on her and determine that they can't live without her. The frenzied roundup that follows on the next "Pony Penning Day" does indeed bring Phantom into their lives, in a way they never would have suspected. Phantom would forever be a creature of the wild. But her gentle, loyal colt Misty is another story altogether. Marguerite Henry's Newbery Honor Book has captivated generations of boys and girls both with its thrilling descriptions of true incidents from the tiny island of Chincoteague, and its realistic yet wonderfully magical atmosphere. This story of an animal brought into captivity poignantly reveals the powerful opposing forces of humans and nature."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
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  • Westlandia

    by Paul Fleishman Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review "What do the children you know usually do when school is out for the summer? Go crazy with boredom? Head poolside with friends? Plan a self-sufficient civilization with its own staple food crop? That is precisely how Wesley decides to spend his summer vacation. Wesley is not an ordinary boy: "He alone in his town disliked pizza and soda, alarming his mother and the school nurse. He found professional football stupid. He'd refused to shave half his head, the hairstyle worn by all the other boys, despite his father's bribe of five dollars." It all starts (the civilization, that is) when Wesley overturns a plot of ground in his yard to see what new and unknown seeds might blow into it. Curiously, just one kind of plant grows--an unusual, flowering, fruit-bearing plant that tastes of "peach, strawberry, pumpkin pie, and flavors he had no name for." Soon, Wesley is literally reaping the fruits of his labors--using the fruit rind to make a cup for the juice he squeezes, barbecuing the root tubers, and weaving the bark into a hat to keep off the sun. In Wesley's new world, he no longer needs a watch because he uses a flower stalk as a sundial, dividing the day into 8 segments, one for each of the flower's petals. A new language (based on an 80-letter alphabet) and counting system (based on the number 8) soon follow. Ah, Weslandia. Slowly but surely his once-tormenting classmates become curious. And soon enough, Wesley allows them to help him crush seeds for oil, which "had a tangy scent and served him both as suntan lotion and mosquito repellent." He also invents sports that are less distasteful to him than football--"games rich with strategy and complex scoring systems," and watches patiently as his classmates blunder. Wesley's parents say that he looks happy for the first time in years."

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Joy

  • Baseball Bats for Christmas

    by Michael Kusugak Year Published:
    Product Description" "Never having seen trees, the children in Repulse Bay decide that the funny things sent them one year must actually be baseball bats. An autobiographical tale from Michael Kusugak's childhood tells a story of life in the arctic, and easily different cultures can interpret things differently."

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  • King Midas: The Golden Touch

    by Demi Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: "Blessed" by the god Dionysus with the ability to turn everything he touches to gold, greedy and ignorant King Midas quickly learns that one must be careful what one wishes for. When his food and drink turn to gold, as well as his servants and every other living thing in the palace, Midas is immediately penitent. "Why did I ever ask for such a stupid gift?" he cries, as his teardrops turn to gold."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
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  • Leah's Pony

    by Elizabeth Friedrich Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: "Leah's parents are farmers in the Great Plains of the 1930s. Amid locusts and drought, their bank forecloses on its loan, ordering a farm auction. Leah sells her beloved pony and uses the money to bid one dollar for her father's tractor. No one has the heart to outbid her. Her action inspires others at the auction to buy the rest of the goods for ridiculously low-dusty bids and return everything to Leah's family."

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  • Night Tree

    by Eve Bunting Year Published:
    From Kirkus Reviews: "A classic nuclear family shares their own Christmas Eve tradition, leaving their conventionally decorated ranch house in Dad's pickup to deck a live tree in the woods with popcorn and fruit for the forest creatures. It's all deliberately cozy--the constant smiles; the hot chocolate and songs (the boy, who narrates, chooses a carol but little Nina wants ``Old MacDonald'); the boy tucked in at the end under a Christmas quilt that echoes the forest scene. A warm Christmas card of a book, in the best sense; Rand's moonlit watercolors are sure to be as popular as the conventional but warmhearted story."

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  • One Grain Of Rice

    by Demi Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review" "Exotic, beautiful, and instructive, this "mathematical folktale" by author-illustrator Demi emerged from her love of India. The narrative and the evocative illustrations combine to create a real sense of the culture and atmosphere of this romantic land. It's the story of Rani, a clever girl who outsmarts a very selfish raja and saves her village. When offered a reward for a good deed, she asks only for one grain of rice, doubled each day for 30 days. Remember your math? That's lots of rice: enough to feed a village for a good long time--and to teach a greedy raja a lesson."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
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  • Silver Packages

    by Cynthia Rylant Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: "Full-page watercolor paintings decorate this warm, sentimental story loosely based on actual events. Rylant traces the origins of an Appalachian "Christmas Train" that travels through the mountains each year on December 23 to a rich man who wished to repay a debt of kindness he had received many years before. He faithfully returns and tosses silver packages from the caboose to the coal-town children who wait by the tracks. One such child is Frankie, who longs for a doctor's kit every year; instead he gets much-needed socks or mittens along with small toys. As an adult, he moves back to the town to live and work, having fulfilled his dream of becoming a doctor. With her clear, balanced, and well-paced storyteller's voice, the author builds the anticipation and excitement that the children,and especially Frankie,feel at the train's annual arrival. Although the heroic profile of this child-turned-man makes him more of a symbol than a real person, his story is capably told. The illustrations provide panoramic views of the Appalachian countryside, with deep nighttime blues and wintry colors, strengthening the sense of place. A well-rendered reflection on the importance of giving and sharing."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
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  • Stone Soup

    by Marcia Brown Year Published:
    Product Description: "Three soldiers came marching down the road towards a French village. The peasants seeing them coming, suddenly became very busy, for soldiers are often hungry. So all the food was hidden under mattresses or in barns. There followed a battle of wits, with the soldiers equal to the occasion. Stone soup? Why, of course, they could make a wonderful soup of stones...but, of course, one must add a carrot or tow...some meat...so it went."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
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  • The Chanukkah Guest

    by Eric A. Kimmel Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: "Old Bubba Brayna, 97, still makes the best potato latkes in the village. So each year at Chanukkah, her friends and the rabbi come through the snow to share her cooking and hospitality. The first to arrive this year, however, is a grumpy old bear aroused from his cave by the delicious smells of cooking. The nearly blind Bubba mistakes him for the rabbi, welcomes him in and lets him keep his fur coat on against the chill. She carries on with enough chatter for two as the bear growls through the blessing, eats a huge platter of latkes, and bestows a lick on Old Bubba in thanks. When the rabbi and the villagers arrive, they and Bubba figure out who she has been entertaining, have a good laugh, and retire to the kitchen where Bubba begins to cook all over again."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
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  • The Legend of the Bluebonnet

    by Tomie dePaola Year Published:
    Product Description: "This favorite legend, based on Comanche lore, tells the story of how the bluebonnet, the state flower of Texas, came to be."

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Determination

  • Goin' Someplace Special

    by Patricia C. McKissack Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: "Confronted with the indignities and humiliations of segregated Nashville in the 1950s, young 'Tricia Ann holds her head high and remembers that she is "somebody, a human being--no better, no worse than anybody else in this world." For the first time, 'Tricia Ann has been allowed to venture outside her community all by herself. Her grandmother has prepared her well, fortifying her "with enough love, respect, and pride to overcome any situation." 'Tricia Ann, though frustrated by the Jim Crow laws that forbid her, as an African American, to enter certain restaurants and hotels, or even to sit on park benches marked "For Whites Only," rises above her pain and makes her way to one of the only places in the city that welcomes her with open arms: the public library."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
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  • Leaving Gee's Bend

    by Irene Latham Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: "Blind in one eye and shouldering a fair share of work as part of a family of sharecroppers, 10-year-old Ludelphia Bennett is no stranger to hardship or determination. Though her small town of Gee's Bend is geographically isolated by the Alabama River, she sets off on her own to Camden, 40 miles away, to find a doctor for her sick mother. Constant throughout her arduous journey is a stitched-together fabric, and she both physically and mentally chronicles her experiences as she pieces a quilt together. This is the way Ludelphia tells her story, of seeing white people for the first time, of encountering kindness and hate, and it is also the way Latham pays homage to the community spirit that historically fostered a heritage of artisan quilt-makers. While there is a bit of a reliance on coincidence, what shines through is the characterization and sense of place. Rural Alabama of 1932 is brought to life, complete with characters' prejudices and superstitions that are eventually overcome thanks to Ludelphia's indomitable strength. Here is a story that is comforting and warm, just like the quilts that make Gee's Bend famous"

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  • Song of Middle C

    by Alison McGhee Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: "A young musician describes the week leading up to her first piano recital: "Hoo boy, have I been practicing!" She has memorized her piece, "Dance of the Wood Elves," and plays it over and over, using her imagination to add to her "musical interpretation" (a humorous spread shows a woodland scene with the girl playing as elves cavort across the top of the piano). On the big day, she wears her lucky underwear and rehearses taking a bow in front of her stuffed animals. She's all confidence in the car even as her big brother taunts her, and remains "cool as a cucumber" backstage, but when it's her turn she freezes up ("Fingers? Hello?"). Placing her hands in starting position, she accidentally puts her thumb on middle C and inspiration hits: she plays this note repeatedly—like thunder, like wind, and finally like "tiny wood elves who have lost their lucky underwear"—to the great surprise and admiration of the audience."

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  • Surviving Jamestown

    by Gail Karwoski Year Published:
    From School Library Journal: "Sam Collier, 12, thinks he "is the luckiest boy in all of England!" He is about to sail onboard the Susan Constant for the New World and will be Captain John Smith's page and apprentice for the next few years. The new colony in Virginia is a struggle to maintain-the colonists are unprepared for the hard physical labor, the unfriendly natives, the lack of food, and the harsh climate. Disease rapidly diminishes the population. Smith is a strong leader, but many of the colonists do not trust him. He is not a "highborn Englishman," and he was never cleared of an earlier charge of mutiny. When he is named to the ruling council, there is outrage, and the tone is set for the remainder of the book. The story takes place between 1606, when the ship sets sail, and 1609, when Smith returns to England. It is told primarily in the third person with occasional intrusions of Sam's thoughts as he questions a situation in which he has been placed or a decision Smith has made.

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  • The Great Serum Race

    by Debbie S. Miller Year Published:
    From Booklist: "This picture book for older children tells the full story of the legendary 1925 race to Nome, Alaska, to deliver diphtheria antitoxin serum. The run was actually a relay, completed by many mushers and teams (a chart showing the name of the musher and the distance covered is included in the back of the book), although a dog named Balto seems to have the best press agent; his participation in the race is memorialized with a statue in Central Park and a feature-length movie. There's a lot of text here, but Miller's telling is exciting, and her details are compelling."

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  • Today I Will Fly!

    by Mo Willems Year Published:
    Product Description: "Gerald is careful. Piggie is not. Piggie cannot help smiling. Gerald can. Gerald worries so that Piggie does not have to. Gerald and Piggie are best friends. Today, I Will Fly! is the funny introduction to the characters. Piggie is determined to fly. But Gerald the elephant knows that's impossible--isn't it?"

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Kindness

  • Corduroy

    by Don Freeman Year Published:
    Amazon.com Review: "Have you ever dreamed of being locked in a department store at night? The endearing story of Corduroy paints a picture of the adventures that might unfold (for a teddy bear at least) in such a situation. When all the shoppers have gone home for the night, Corduroy climbs down from the shelf to look for his missing button. It's a brave new world! He accidentally gets on an elevator that he thinks must be a mountain and sees the furniture section that he thinks must be a palace. He tries to pull a button off the mattress, but he ends up falling off the bed and knocking over a lamp. The night watchman hears the crash, finds Corduroy, and puts him back on the shelf downstairs. The next morning, he finds that it's his lucky day! A little girl buys him with money she saved in her piggy bank and takes him home to her room. Corduroy decides that this must be home and that Lisa must be his friend."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
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  • The Lion & the Mouse

    by Jerry Pinkney Year Published:
    Product Description: "In award-winning artist Jerry Pinkney's wordless adaptation of one of Aesop's most beloved fables, an unlikely pair learn that no act of kindness is ever wasted. After a ferocious lion spares a cowering mouse that he'd planned to eat, the mouse later comes to his rescue, freeing him from a poacher's trap. With vivid depictions of the landscape of the African Serengeti and expressively-drawn characters, Pinkney makes this a truly special retelling, and his stunning pictures speak volumes."

    Note: This book is available in our Library.
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  • The Three Questions

    by Jon J. Muth Year Published:
    From Publishers Weekly: "Muth (Come On, Rain!) recasts a short story by Tolstoy into picture-book format, substituting a boy and his animal friends for the czar and his human companions. Yearning to be a good person, Nikolai asks, "When is the best time to do things? Who is the most important one? What is the right thing to do?" Sonya the heron, Gogol the monkey and Pushkin the dog offer their opinions, but their answers do not satisfy Nikolai. He visits Leo, an old turtle who lives in the mountains. While there, he helps Leo with his garden and rescues an injured panda and her cub, and in so doing, finds the answers he seeks. As Leo explains, "There is only one important time, and that time is now. The most important one is always the one you are with. And the most important thing is to do good for the one who is standing at your side." Moral without being moralistic, the tale sends a simple and direct message unfreighted by pomp or pedantry."

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