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Staff Picks 4 Kids

Remarkable by Lizzie Foley

syndetics-lcHow can you go wrong when the title of the book is Remarkable? I was really looking forward to reading Remarkable by Lizzie Foley, a fun story about a town where all the residents have something that makes them truly remarkable, except for one girl, Jane Doe.  Throw in a mystery, some pirates, and a sea monster and the story must be something remarkable right?  Well, not entirely.  It was definitely enjoyable and fun to read, but I wanted it to be more remarkable than it actually was.  How remarkable do you think it is?

Book reviewed by Keary B., Youth Collection Specialist Librarian

By lbos on March 18, 2013 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Funny, Mystery & Suspense, Picks by Keary B.

Who Could That Be at This Hour? by Lemony Snicket

syndetics-lcFans of Lemony Snicket rejoice! He is back with the first book in a series about his strange childhood. When Lemony is 11, he goes to work as an apprentice for a detective. Their first job is to find a priceless sculpture that was stolen, but the mystery gets more complicated the more they find out. Lemony has to deal with a bully whose parents are the town police officers, a girl who seems like his friend, but keeps stealing from him, and a villain who seems to be behind it all. This book is written in the same style as the Series of Unfortunate Events, and is full of quirky humor and weird goings-on.  Just be prepared for a cliffhanger…don’t worry, there’s a sequel on the way!

Book reviewed by Claire B., Outreach Coordinator

 

 

By lbos on March 4, 2013 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Funny, Mystery & Suspense, Picks by Claire B, Uncategorized

The Templeton Twins Have an Idea by Ellis Weiner

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The Templeton Twins Have an Idea is the first book in a new series by Ellis Weiner, in which the Narrator tells the story of Professor Templeton, the famous inventor of such products as the Adjust-O-Matic Diving Board and the Battery-Operated Toothpick. He is also the father of 12-year-old twins, Abigail and John, who have recently lost their mother. When the family relocates to a new University, the Professor is met with accusations by a former student who claims that Mr. Templeton’s latest invention—the Personal One-Man Helicopter—was actually his idea. This conflict leads to (among other things): one injured Nanny, two kidnapped children, and several very complicated escape plans. How did this all happen? Read this hilarious adventure to find out!

Book reviewed by Erin E., Youth Services Programming Coordinator

By lbos on January 7, 2013 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Funny, Picks by Erin E.

Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume

syndetics-lcTales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume. Peter Hatcher has a two-and-a-half-year-old little brother named Fudge who is a one kid wrecking crew.  This little kid is constantly causing trouble for Peter in one way or another: Fudge scribbles all over his poster project for school, throws a fit in a restaurant and smears mashed potatoes on the wall, tries to fly at the playground while Peter is supposed to be watching him and breaks out his front teeth, and refuses to eat unless he can pretend he’s a dog and eat with his plate on the floor.  Peter wishes they could just trade Fudge in for a real Cocker Spaniel. Worst of all, Fudge gets all the attention and almost NEVER even gets in trouble for anything he does!  Luckily Peter has his best friend Jimmy and his cool pet turtle Dribble.  But Fudge goes way too far when he messes with Dribble the turtle—I don’t want to give away the ending, but Fudge ends up in the hospital! If you have a little brother or sister, you will definitely be able to relate to Peter’s story—but anybody who likes funny stories will love this book.

 

By bjones on November 26, 2012 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Funny, Realistic Stories

Dear George Clooney, Please Marry My Mom by Susin Nielsen

Dear George ClooneyDear Reader,

Meet Violet, the funny and quirky main character of Dear George Clooney, Please Marry My Mom by Susin Nielsen.  She’s a little bit angry these days because her father left her mother to live in a fancy house in LA with his new wife and adorable toddlers. Meanwhile, she’s still living in a falling-apart house in Vancouver, Canada, while her mother dates a series of losers. Also, the girls from school (Thing One and Thing Two) keep teasing her, and the boy she likes doesn’t seem to like her back. Things aren’t looking good for Violet, but that’s about to change because she has a plan. And it starts with getting rid of the newest boyfriend of her mother’s, Dudley Wiener, and finding a better one…like George Clooney! Along the way, Violet does some things she shouldn’t, visits the hospital twice, and makes some surprising friends. Get ready to cringe, laugh, and root for Violet!

Book reviewed by Claire B., Youth Outreach Coordinator

By bjones on November 12, 2012 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Funny, Picks by Claire B

Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos

Dead End in NorveltIn Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos, Jack ends up getting grounded for an ENTIRE SUMMER through no fault of his own—he couldn’t have known that rifle was loaded, and his dad actually told him to cut down his mom’s corn plants. Instead of playing baseball with his best friend, he ends up helping his crazy elderly neighbor write obituaries as the oldest residents of their town die one after the other.  Oh, and he gets nosebleeds about every other page—especially when he sees dead bodies (yes, he sees more than one!).  This is a very, very funny and sometimes slightly ghoulish story about a kid who, like it or not, learns a little about life—and death.

 

By bjones on October 22, 2012 Categories: Award Winners, For Grades 4-6, Funny, Realistic Stories

The Trouble with Chickens by Doreen Cronin

Trouble with ChickensThe Trouble with Chickens by Doreen Cronin. J.J. Tully, a retired search-and-rescue dog, hopes to enjoy a peaceful afternoon. But instead, he is called to the aid of Moosh, a worried mother hen, and her chicks, Dirt and Sugar, who need help tracking down some missing members of the family!  It seems that the missing chicks have been chicknapped by Vince the Funnel, but who knows what will happen when Tully plans a rescue mission!  Cartoon illustrations only add to the fun making this fast-paced mystery a good choice for beginner chapter book readers. Also makes a great family read aloud!

 Book reviewed by Keary B., Youth Collection Specialist

By bjones on September 24, 2012 Categories: For Grades 2-4, Funny, Mystery & Suspense, Picks by Keary B.

Pie by Sarah Weeks

PieAfter Polly Portman’s unexpected death, the town of Ipswitch discovers a major loss to the community–her award winning pies!  Polly’s crust recipe was secret.  According to her will, the recipe for the crust is left to her disagreeable cat Lardo. Her niece Alice inherits the cat and a lot of trouble. Suddenly, the entire town is in an uproar when its residents find out that replacing Aunt Polly’s claim to fame is not as “easy as pie.” When Lardo is cat-napped, Alice and her friend Charlie take matters in their own hands as they try to figure out who is after the recipe. Not only will you love reading Pie, but Sarah Weeks shares fourteen pie recipes she has gathered from all over the country.  This book is a sweet treat you will not want to miss.

Book reviewed by Marsha D., Youth Services Assistant

By bjones on August 28, 2012 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Funny, Picks by Marsha D.

Charlie Joe Jackson’s Guide to Not Reading by Tommy Greenwald

Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide to Not ReadingCharlie Joe Jackson’s Guide to Not Reading by Tommy Greenwald. Charlie Joe does NOT like reading, in fact he will do practically anything to get out of reading. So how will Charlie Joe finish his big year-end project when his best friend won’t read his books for him anymore?  Not to worry, Charlie Joe comes up with a crazy scheme that will keep him safe from reading, for now at least.  Complete with tips about reading and how to avoid it! Recommended for fans of Big Nate, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, or anyone who enjoys a good laugh.

Book reviewed by Keary B., Youth Collection Specialist

By bjones on July 9, 2012 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Funny, Picks by Keary B.

Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos

Dead End in NorveltGetting grounded for an entire summer was not Jack’s idea of a good time, but that’s what happens when he fires his dad’s WWII rifle by accident and cuts down all of his mother’s corn. (His dad made him cut down the corn!) Then his mother volunteers him to help his elderly neighbor with a strange task: writing obituaries for the Norvelt newspaper. Along the way, he dresses up as the Grim Reaper to check on an elderly resident, drives underage, has a run in with the Hells Angels, has quite a few nosebleeds, and learns that history is “the reason you remind yourself of the stupid stuff you’ve done in the past is so you don’t do it again.” Not to mention, he helps solve the mystery of why all the original residents of Norvelt keep dying. It’s a funny story with plenty of excitement and interesting characters. This year, Dead End in Norvelt won the Newbery Award! But just to warn you, this book talks about bloody noses and dead bodies.

Book reviewed by Claire B., Youth Outreach Coordinator

By bjones on March 13, 2012 Categories: Award Winners, For Grades 4-6, Funny, Picks by Claire B