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Staff Picks 4 Kids

The Traitors’ Gate by Avi

Traitors' Gate John Huffam’s life in Victorian London gets dangerous when his family is thrown out of their home because of his father’s gambling debts. Now his father may go to prison, and John has to ask his rich old aunt for money,and get a job. When John encounters some strange characters—an orphan girl named “Sary the Sneak” and a man called “Inspector Copperfield”—he begins to question the real reasons for his father’s arrest. The Traitors’ Gate by Avi is an action-packed story full of twists, turns, and treachery. It will not only give you a real taste of Victorian times, but it’ll keep you guessing ‘til the end.

Book reviewed by Erin E. Youth Services Programming Coordinator

 

By MPPL on July 20, 2011 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Mystery & Suspense, Picks by Erin E.

The Seer of Shadows by Avi

The Seer of ShadowsThe Seer of Shadows by Avi is set in New York City in 1872. Fourteen-year-old Horace Carpetine is a photographer’s apprentice, and his nasty boss is trying to take advantage of a rich client, Mrs. Von Macht. The plan is to fake a “spirit photograph”with an image of the woman’s dead daughter, Eleanora. But things take a turn when Eleanora’s ghost literally enters the picture, and Horace must deal with her restless spirit, hopefully thwarting her intentions for revenge. Newbery Medalist Avi weaves a suspenseful and haunting tale—one that I recommend to those looking for a fast-paced story you’ll find both frightening and mysterious.

Book reviewed by Erin E., Youth Services Programming Coordinator

By MPPL on April 5, 2011 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Mystery & Suspense, Picks by Erin E.

Edgar Allan Poe’s Tales of Mystery and Madness & Edgar Allen Poe’s Tales of Death and Dementia

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Gris Grimly is the perfect illustrator for Edgar Allan Poe’s dark and creepy stories. The pictures range from somewhat silly to very grotesque, but they always perfect in bringing the words to life. And how wonderful Poe is with words! His terrifying tales are meant for reading aloud. Listeners are sure to get chills from the classics “The Tell-Tale Heart” in Edgar Allan Poe’s Tales of Death and Dementia and “Black Cat” in Edgar Allan Poe’s Tales of Mystery and Madness.  Both books are totally twisted!

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Book reviewed by Erin E., Youth Services Programming Coordinator

By MPPL on February 7, 2011 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Mystery & Suspense, Picks by Erin E., Short Stories

Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool

Moon Over ManifestIf you like mysteries and old-fashioned stories, then this Newbery-award-winning book is for you. In Moon Over Manifest, Abilene Tucker’s father, Gideon,sends her to live with his friend Pastor Shady in Manifest, Kansas, where he grew up. Abilene hopes to find out more about her father from the people who live there. Abilene finds an old box of treasures and some letters from World War I between two people named Ned and Jinx. With help from Miss Sadie, the town fortuneteller, Abilene discovers why these objects and letters are important. The story jumps between Abilene’s time in 1936 and Ned and Jinx’s time in 1917. Who is Jinx? Will Abilene solve the mystery of who the Rattler is? Read more to find out!

Book reviewed by Anne W., Youth Services Assistant

We the Children by Andrew Clements

We the Children Jill and Ben’s school is going to be torn down so an amusement park can be built! What could be better news than that? So why do the two children begin to search out school secrets in the hopes of keeping their school open? And why are their efforts a concern to the new custodian? Author Andrew Clements gives us We the Children, the first book of his new series Benjamin Pratt & the Keepers of the School, with a promise of five more books to come. Don’t miss this exciting beginning!

Book reviewed by Loreen S., Youth Services Assistant

 

By MPPL on January 4, 2011 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Mystery & Suspense, Picks by Loreen S.

The Ring of Rocamadour By Michael Beil

Ring of RocamadourThis first book in the Red Blazer Girls series by Michael Beil involves a group of smart school girls who aren’t about to give up the chance to solve a 20-year-old mystery, no matter what it takes or how much homework they have.  Working together, the girls race to finish a scavenger hunt and find a mysterious ring before a strange man gets it.  See if you can solve the puzzles with the gang and test your own knowledge! And stay tuned for the next exciting adventure in the series–The Vanishing Violin!

Book reviewed by Keary B., Youth Collection Specialist

 

By MPPL on November 29, 2010 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Mystery & Suspense, Picks by Keary B.

When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead

When You Reach Me When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead is about Miranda, a sixth grader in 1978, and her life and her friends.  As the story progresses, she starts finding mysterious notes from someone that knows about events that are going to happen to her in the future.  The notes also ask her to “write a letter” about what is going on.  Sometimes it gets confusing, but the time travel elements of the plot are really interesting—by the end of the book you will truly be amazed.  At first, I thought this would be a boring story about Miranda and her friends and how they hurt each other’s feelings then make up, etc. etc.; but if you can hold on till the time travel mystery really gets going about half way through, you won’t be disappointed.  I’m glad this book won the Newbery award because it is really great!

 

 

By MPPL on May 3, 2010 Categories: Award Winners, For Grades 4-6, Mystery & Suspense

When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead

When You Reach Me When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead is about Miranda, a sixth grader in 1978, and her life and her friends.  As the story progresses, she starts finding mysterious notes from someone that knows about events that are going to happen to her in the future.  The notes also ask her to “write a letter” about what is going on.  Sometimes it gets confusing, but the time travel elements of the plot are really interesting—by the end of the book you will truly be amazed.  At first, I thought this would be a boring story about Miranda and her friends and how they hurt each other’s feelings then make up, etc. etc.; but if you can hold on till the time travel mystery really gets going about half way through, you won’t be disappointed.  I’m glad this book won the Newbery award because it is really great!

 

 

The Missing: Book 1, Found by Margaret Peterson Haddix

Found I rarely read past the first book in a series, so it says a lot that I can’t wait to read book 2 of “The Missing” series by Margaret Peterson Haddix. Book 1, Found, is a fast-paced, action-packed thriller.  It begins when 13-year-old Jonah gets a letter in the mail with just six words: “YOU ARE ONE OF THE MISSING.”  The plot thickens as Jonah, his friend Chip, and his sister Katherine gather clues about disappearing airplanes, stolen babies, and the FBI.

Book reviewed by Erin E., Youth Services Programming Coordinator

 

By MPPL on January 5, 2010 Categories: Mystery & Suspense, Picks by Erin E., Science Fiction

The Missing: Book 1, Found by Margaret Peterson Haddix

Found I rarely read past the first book in a series, so it says a lot that I can’t wait to read book 2 of “The Missing” series by Margaret Peterson Haddix. Book 1, Found, is a fast-paced, action-packed thriller.  It begins when 13-year-old Jonah gets a letter in the mail with just six words: “YOU ARE ONE OF THE MISSING.”  The plot thickens as Jonah, his friend Chip, and his sister Katherine gather clues about disappearing airplanes, stolen babies, and the FBI.

Book reviewed by Erin E., Youth Services Programming Coordinator