A fascinating story of 13-year-old Lora's decision to volunteer as one of Fidel Castro's Literacy Volunteers in early communist Cuba. With elements of historical fiction and adventure tale, this coming-of-age story follows one teen's determination to live by her values and thus find her greater purpose in life. It is also an exploration of literacy, and what it means to be able to and allowed to read. The author of The Bridge to Terabithia has again given us a book that allows us to experience life from deep within a character who is discovering their place in the world.
Here’s a story about a weird society in which there are bunnies of all colors & their moms are dogs! And…waterfalls go from down to up! One day everything weird in this society becomes normal—dogs give birth to dogs & waterfalls go from up to down. Meanwhile, Grimsly Summerfield owns a pet graveyard & some bones are stolen. He goes on a quest for the Seer, the one that can see into the future, to help him figure out how to make the society weird again. The Seer sends Grimsley to the real world, & he dives deeper into the secrets of the town he calls home.
— Bryce L., age 9
At the end of The War that Saved My Life, Ada & Jamie are reunited with Susan, but their house has been bombed. This book continues their story. After Ada’s long-awaited clubfoot surgery & months in the hospital, they move into a cottage belonging to Lady Thornton. World War II continues to escalate, & the rich Lady Thornton’s mansion is taken for military use. She has no choice but to move into the small cottage with them. Although it’s hard living in the crowded place, it gets worse when Ruth moves in. Ruth—a Jewish girl from Germany! Ada doesn’t know if she can trust her. And when a sudden loss rocks the tiny cottage, it’s hard to keep fighting. Will Ada make it through the calamity? Find out in: The War I Finally Won, yet another amazing war story!
— Hannah C., Age 12
For Ada, World War II has been a good thing so far. It got her out of a trapped existence with an abusive mother, the surgery she needed to fix her clubfoot, a guardian who seems to love her, friends, even a pony of her own.
Now that her life is changing for the better, Ada can see that others face great challenges, too, even those who seem to have everything. As the sacrifices of war come closer to home, is it Ada’s turn to help? And why is figuring out who to help so confusing?
Readers will welcome another chance to share Ada’s story in this very satisfying sequel to The War That Saved My Life.
What a thrilling, well written debut novel for both guys and gals. Scott Reintgen has skillfully achieved a balance of compelling plot with highly authentic characters that drive the story forward. A former high school teacher, Reintgen has used his experiences to create relatable characters in a classroom-like scenario, but in an outer-space setting—I couldn’t help but like Emmet and wanted to know what would happen to him next. Whether you’re a fan of sci-fi or not, you will love this book! I absolutely did!
This is a good story about not worrying what others think about you & being true to yourself. Allie is the principal’s kid & no one trusts her because they think she’ll tattle to her mom on them. She has a group of other kids whose parents are faculty & through them, she learns what it means to be a good friend. I like this book as it had good life lessons for kids in middle school.
— ARC REVIEWER Lucy F., age 13
Looking for an action-packed adventure that just doesn’t stop? Then this book is for you! I mean it! Once he arrived in Belize, I don’t think Sam ever got a chance to relax & you the reader will feel the very same way. In fact, I’d be surprised if you didn’t try to read this story all in one sitting. Sam is following another clue about pyramids, with the hope of finding his parents. Once again, he has help from a friend he met when heading to Egypt—Mary. And once again, he has suspicions about her: is she really trying to help him or is she trying to get information from him, to pass on to her father? You won’t know unless you read the newest installment of the Pyramid Hunters! For ages 10 & up.
Where to start? The detachable 6-foot timeline can easily grace the wall of a bedroom, offering countless hours of facts. But it also shows the relationship between when events occurred, and how the earth looked when those things were happening and when those animals were living. Then, enjoy the lively news articles highlighting the history of natural science, including “American researchers in fossil face-off”. Keep a curious kid happy for hours!
It all started with a solar eclipse…. this James Bond-style thriller makes perfect use of the graphic novel format. The plot urges you forward while the gorgeous images draw you in to look at every detail. Time travel and great characters make this a new classic that kids will be collecting.
This story is set in New York City…but it’s a NYC unlike the one you & I know & love. Set in modern-day, it has inventions we have yet to see in the real world: cobblestones & windows that absorb light, only to be stored in batteries that power the city. Mechanical marvels that help keep the city clean: metal beetles tidy up the streets, snails scrub windows & dragonflies dry clothes, just to name a few. But this city also has a marvelous secret, created by the same people, a brother & sister duo, who long ago built all these wonders. And now, it’s up to another brother & sister duo to solve it. They must if they want to save their home…& quite possibly, the entire city itself. Filled with codes, cyphers & puzzles that challenge the mind, this book hooked & reeled me in, utterly & completely.
I loved this book! There was so much history that I didn’t know before. Some parts were even a little funny to keep you interested! The perfect combination. This book teaches you about the Marquise de Lafayette, the legend of Molly Pitcher, the Culper Spy Ring & so many more facts you wouldn’t find anywhere else. I recommend this book for people interested in the American Revolution or just interested in being smarter than their teachers! I love this book! For age 8 and up.
-Kennedy A., age 9
This Young Reader’s Edition perfectly hits the mark. Reimagined with sixth grader Molly in the present day, whose story is intertwined with Niamh from 1929, historical fiction fans will love the way these two lives are subtly compared, and ultimately reach across the years to help each other out. A beautiful portrayal of difficult circumstances and compassionate understanding.
To have such exquisite writing available to middle grade readers is extraordinary. Told in an intimate and determined voice, Crow’s search to find her roots rocks her fragile world, and endangers those around her. Profound yet utterly relatable, I will reread this book many times; destined for the Newbery shortlist.
Jerry Spinelli has been a master story teller for a long time…and he still is! The Warden’s Daughter is about a girl struggling to shed the burdens of her childhood and all the messy realities that go along with that journey. In these pages you will meet Cammie, a girl so real in her desires, her mess ups, her attempts to be happy, that you will think you’ve met her before or maybe even you have some of her inside you! Enter the world of the 1950’s and be prepared for some heavy topics and some serious angst. Read this book and give it to someone else so you can discuss!
Ally has been smart enough to fool a lot of people. Every time she lands in a new school, she is able to hide her inability to read by creating clever, yet disruptive distractions. She’s afraid to ask for help, what would people think? However, her newest teacher, Mr. Daniels sees the bright, creative kid underneath the trouble-maker. With his help, Ally learns not to be so hard on herself & that dyslexia is nothing to be ashamed of. She discovers that there’s a lot more to her--& to everyone, than a label, & that great minds don’t always think alike.
— ARC REVIEWER Alexander P., age 11
Here's one for the fans of realistic fiction, mystery or adventure. Lizzie lives at the zoo where her father works. Tyler is a runaway taking refuge behind the elephant's house. When their paths cross, a friendship begins. Then one of the wolves dies & they're suspicious. Their curiosity takes them out of the zoo & into the wilds of Yosemite Park, testing their new friendship as well as survival skills. The Wolf Keepers is well-paced, smoothly written & has the markings of a Nutmeg nominee. A story not to be missed for both guys & girls.