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Staff Picks 4 Kids

What’s It Like to Climb Mount Everest, Blast Off into Space, Survive a Tornado and Other Extraordinary Stories by Jeff Belanger

Cover image for What it's like to climb Mount Everest, blast off into space, survive a tornado, and other extraordinary storiesPeople can do some pretty amazing things. Just ask Bethany Hamilton, Angus Cockney, Lieutenant Jeff Kraft, and many other people in this book. Each person tells their amazing story in this book as if they were talking to you. This book also gives each person their own chapter, which makes this a great book to start and stop reading. Read a chapter and put it down. You just learned about one person. To hear about these stories and many others, check out What It’s Like to Climb Mount Everest, Blast Off into Space, Survive a Tornado and Other Extraordinary Stories.

Book reviewed by Laura B., Youth Technology Librarian

By lbos on December 15, 2014 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Non-fiction, Picks by Laura B.

Falling In by Francis O’Roark Dowell

Cover image for Falling inIf you liked A Tale Dark and Grimm, then you might like Falling In by Frances O’Roark Dowell. Isabelle Bean has never had real friends. She talks in riddles and always seems to be in her own world. One day, when she is in the nurse’s office at school, she falls into a closet and suddenly is transported to another world where children are hiding because an evil witch is after them. When she first falls into this world, the children think she is a witch too, because she wears red boots like a witch. However, soon Isabelle finds herself making friends and even meets a nice old lady that looks a lot like Isabelle’s mom, but how can that be? Isabelle is from a different world, right? Or maybe, there is more to this witch story than was originally thought.

Book reviewed by Laura B., Youth Technology Librarian

By lbos on October 21, 2014 Categories: Fantasy, For Grades 4-6, Picks by Laura B.

Zita the Spacegirl, Book 1, Far from Home by Ben Hatke

syndetics-lcZita was just playing finders-keepers with her friend Joseph when they came across a giant hole with a meteoroid sitting at the bottom. However, when Zita went to explore, instead of finding a rock, she found a device with a giant red button. When she pressed it, Joseph is taken through a portal. Zita presses the button again to see if she can rescue him. Now, Zita is on a planet with a bunch of different aliens and has to try to save Joseph from the dangerous Scriptorians. How will she ever make everything right again?

Book reviewed by Laura B., Youth Technology Librarian

By lbos on September 15, 2014 Categories: For Grades 2-4, For Grades 4-6, Graphic Novels, Picks by Laura B., Science Fiction

Close to Famous by Joan Bauer

syndetics-lcCupcakes are the best dessert. Just ask Foster McFee, upcoming television chef. At least she hopes to be when she grows up. However, it is hard to obtain your dream when you have to start over with your mom in a new town called Culpepper, which has some really interesting people living there. Soon the town encounters some unexpected events, and will have to support each other through some tough times if they want to survive. Foster is ready for the challenge, because sometimes things don’t go the way you plan, but you can always just keep on baking.

Book reviewed by Laura B., Youth Technology Librarian

By lbos on August 4, 2014 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Picks by Laura B., Realistic Stories

The Day-Glo Brothers: The True Story of Bob and Joe Switzer’s Bright Ideas and Brand New Colors by Chris Barton

syndetics-lcWere neon colors created? The answer is yes, and this book will tell you how two brothers having fun and experimenting turned into the invention of these colors. This quick nonfiction read is filled with these neon colors and is fun to read.

Book reviewed by Laura B., Youth Technology Librarian

By lbos on May 26, 2014 Categories: For Grades 2-4, For Grades 4-6, Non-fiction, Picks by Laura B.

Seaglass Summer by Anjali Banerjee

syndetics-lcPoppy has never owned a pet, but she wants to be a veterinarian. This summer, while her parents are visiting her family in India, she is going to get first-hand experience working at her Uncle Sanjay’s animal clinic on an island in Washington. While it sounds like it would be great playing with puppies and making sure they are healthy, she also has all the hard jobs like cleaning the floor when the animals have an accident. Suddenly, Poppy isn’t sure she wants to work with animals anymore, but maybe if she can find a lucky charm, a piece of seaglass, to help her through her days, she will find that working with animals is fun and just what she likes.

Book reviewed by Laura B., Youth Technology Librarian

By lbos on May 12, 2014 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Picks by Laura B., Realistic Stories

Beyond Lucky by Sarah Aronson

syndetics-lcAccording to Ari Fish, a super-rare Wayne Timcoe trading card is the best lucky charm a soccer player can have and Ari is the lucky finder of one at the beginning of soccer season. Soon everything is going great for Ari, but bad stuff is coming. His card is stolen, his best friend is acting weird, and his soccer superstar/ forest firefighter brother is in a horrible forest fire. Can Ari and his soccer team win without the card for luck? Will his brother be okay? Find out if Ari’s luck continues in this sports novel, Beyond Lucky.

Book reviewed by Laura B., Youth Technology Librarian

By lbos on April 7, 2014 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Picks by Laura B., Realistic Stories

Odette’s Secrets by MaryAnn MacDonald

syndetics-lcOdette lives in Paris with her father and mother, and the only thing that could make her life better is if she could have a cat, but that is about to change when the Nazi army invades Paris. In this historical fiction novel in verse, Odette’s Secret by Mary Ann MacDonald, Odette and her family face the challenge of surviving World War Two. This is an even harder challenge for them, because Odette’s family has Polish Jewish heritage. Odette’s mother, fearing for her daughter’s safety when her father is taken as a prisoner of war, sends Odette to the countryside to stay safe. In the country, Odette must act like any other child that is not Jewish. If she can do this, she could be safe, but will the rest of her family be safe too? This novel is based on the true story of Odette Meyer and is written in free verse, which is like poetry, but tells a story like a regular novel. If you are interested in the courageous journey Odette and her family took in World War Two, I would check out Odette’s Secret.

 

Book reviewed by Laura B., Youth Technology Librarian

By lbos on February 24, 2014 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Historical Fiction, Picks by Laura B.

Pickle: The (Formerly) Anonymous Prank Club of Fountain Point Middle School by Kimberly Baker

syndetics-lcPickle making is serious business. Just ask Ben Diaz, the president of the League of Pickle Makers, a new Fountain Point Middle School club. The club began when Ben created an epic prank by filling his classroom with ball-pit balls. Now, all they need to do is keep it a secret from the principal of the school. However, when the new girl, Sienna, joins the group, her love of bugs may be the undoing of the whole group. Hopefully their pickled eggs will win over the principal and teachers to show that they are a serious pickle making club. That is, if they can find them in time for the big event, or maybe they should let their secret identities create the prank of all pranks…

Book reviewed by Laura B., Youth Technology Librarian

By lbos on February 3, 2014 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Funny, Picks by Laura B.

The Ugly One by Leanne Statland Ellis

syndetics-lcMicay thinks that she will be bullied forever because of the large scar on her face. In her ancient Incan village, boys constantly call her the ugly one. However, one day a stranger comes to their mountain village on his way to the Sacred Sun City of Machu Picchu. He gives Micay a baby macaw as a gift. Will this new friend help Micay find her voice against her bullies or will she be destined to be the ugly one forever?

Book reviewed by Laura B., Youth Technology Librarian

 

By lbos on December 23, 2013 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Historical Fiction, Picks by Laura B.