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Archive for January, 2012

Greetings From Nowhere by Barbara O’Connor

Greetings From NowhereMost people send postcards from fun and exciting places they have visited such as Florida, Hawaii, or Australia.  In the book entitled Greetings From Nowhere by Barbara O’Connor, you probably wouldn’t find anyone sending a postcard from the Sleepy Time Motel in the Great Smoky Mountains.  Even the name sounds dull!

It is a run-down motel in the middle of nowhere, and there has not been a visitor there in almost three months!  But something very interesting happens when four families meet under somewhat unusual circumstances.  Read this book to find out how sometimes with a little bit of hope, you can find exactly what you need even in the middle of nowhere.

Book reviewed by Carol C., Elementary School Liaison

By bjones on January 16, 2012 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Picks by Carol C., Realistic Stories

Skulduggery Pleasant by Derek Landy

Skulduggery PleasantImagine never having to go to school or do homework again!  Instead you can send a copy of yourself to school while you learn magic and save the world.  Of course, there are just a few little drawbacks — danger, death, or at least severe bodily harm.  This is the life of 12-year-old Stephanie Edgely, aka Valkerie Kane, as described in Skulduggery Pleasant by Derek Landy.  Upon the death of her favorite uncle, Stephanie learns that she is descended from a long line of magical beings called the Ancients.  Now she must join the witty, funny (and extremely confident) skeleton detective, Skulduggery Pleasant in order to stop the evil Faceless Ones from completing their plan for world domination.   Equal parts funny and creepy, once you start reading this book, you won’t be able stop!  This is a great book for grades 5 and up. 
 
Book reviewed by Mary S., Youth Services Department Head

By bjones on January 11, 2012 Categories: Fantasy, For Grades 4-6, Picks by Mary S.

Wonderstruck by Brian Selznick

WonderstruckIf you loved The Invention of Hugo Cabret, Brian Selznick’s latest novel Wonderstruck–told as two stories, one in words and one in pictures–will keep you reading until the very last page.  In 1977, twelve-year old Ben first loses his mother and soon after his hearing when he is struck by lightning. After discovering some clues in his mother’s belongings, he runs away to New York in search of his father.  Fifty years earlier, a deaf girl named Rose departs to find the movie star Lillian Mayhew, who we learn is her mother.  Each child’s personal quest leads them to an adventure at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.  The two stories weave back and forth until they form a special connection in the conclusion.
A wonderful comparison can be made if you read an earlier classic, From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg where two children run away to the Metropolitan Museum in New York.  Then plan your own scavenger hunt uncovering similarities that Selznick has included in Wonderstruck.

Book reviewed by Marsha D., Youth Services Assistant

By MPPL on January 9, 2012 Categories: Award Winners, For Grades 4-6, Picks by Marsha D., Realistic Stories