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Staff Picks 4 Kids

Yummy: Eight Favorite Fairy Tales by Lucy Cousins

syndetics-lcIf you’re looking for super-simplified versions of some best-known fairy tales, look no further than Yummy: Eight Favorite Fairy Tales by Lucy Cousins, the author of the Maisy series. The simplicity makes the pattern of each tale obvious, so that even very young children can begin to learn how to retell a story. Cousins’ signature artwork fits in perfectly with the text. Just be wary of a couple of the illustrations—that is, if you don’t want to see the big, bad wolf’s head separate from his body!

Book reviewed by Erin E., Youth Services Programming Coordinator

 

 

 

 

By lbos on October 14, 2013 Categories: For Grades 2-4, Non-fiction, Picks by Erin E.

Invincible Microbe: Tuberculosis and the Never-Ending Search for a Cure by Jim Murphy and Alison Blank

syndetics-lcI really enjoyed this real-life medical mystery.  Tuberculosis (TB) has been around for centuries, attacking its victims with horrible, painful symptons, and — truth be told — some of the so-called “cures” have been just as bad.  So why is it so hard to cure TB?  That’s the mystery, and that’s what this book is about.  Dive into the medical twists and turns, and decide for yourself if there is any hope of ridding the world forever of this devastating disease.

Book reviewed by Mary Ann S., Assistant Head of Youth Services

By lbos on October 7, 2013 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Non-fiction, Picks by Mary Ann S.

Tales for Very Picky Eaters by John Schneider

syndetics-lcJames is a very picky eater. He finds broccoli disgusting and milk repulsive. There are also many other foods he does not like, but Dad knows that James need to eat and drink these things. After all, we wouldn’t want to hurt the troll’s feelings that lives in the basement and makes the family’s food. This 2014 Monarch nominee book is great if you are just starting to read chapter books. The chapters are short and there are some really funny pictures. Also, James’s dad comes up with some great ideas for why James needs to eat his food.

Book reviewed by Laura B., Youth Technology Librarian

By lbos on September 30, 2013 Categories: Early Readers, For Grades 2-4, Funny, Picks by Laura B.

Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins

syndetics-lcGregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins is a quick and exciting read, and the ending definitely left me hanging so I might need to read the sequels. Fantasy isn’t my favorite genre, but I do like the idea of other worlds existing that we do not even know about. Gregor doesn’t see himself as a warrior in the beginning, but grows and changes as he faces numerous challenges in the Underland. Parts of the story were a little gross, other parts a little scary, and some parts sad. This would make a good discussion book because there is a lot of adventure, imagination, and many metaphorical themes.

Book reviewed by Erin E., Youth Services Programming Coordinator

By lbos on September 23, 2013 Categories: Fantasy, For Grades 4-6, Picks by Erin E.

Follow Follow: A book of Reverso Poems by Marilyn Singer

syndetics-lcThis poetry book is so fun.  It  is a sequel to the popular Mirror, Mirror  poetry book.  Each page has two poems. The second one is written with the same lines of poetry but in the reverse order with the last line being first and so on.  It is fun to see how the meaning changes.

Book reviewed by Barb M., Youth Outreach and Programming Assistant

By lbos on September 16, 2013 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Non-fiction, Picks by Barb M.

A Little Book of Sloth by Lucy Cooke

syndetics-lcGet ready for a cuteness overload! No, this book isn’t about kittens or puppies, it’s about sloths! I never thought they were cute, until I saw “A Little Book of Sloth”. This book is full of puns, interesting facts about sloths, and a ton of pictures. You’ll learn about the two kinds of sloths—the “Muppet” variety and the “cross between a Wookie and a pig” variety—, what they like to do all day (Hint: Rest and hug. But mostly rest), and meet the superstar sloths at a sloth sanctuary in Costa Rica. Plus, this book will remind you that sometimes, the best thing to do is “just chill” and relax.

Book reviewed by Claire B., Outreach Coordinator

By lbos on September 9, 2013 Categories: For Grades 2-4, For Grades 4-6, Non-fiction, Picks by Claire B

Mimi and Maty to the Rescue, Book 1: Roger the Rat is on the Loose! by Brooke Smith

syndetics-lcMimi loves to rescue animals, She has rescued birds, butterflies, and even her dog, Maty.  When Mimi’s Aunt Bee sends her a notebook and Maty a new bandana, Mimi and Maty decide to be the best animal rescuers in town. They get their first case when George calls and tells them that he was rat sitting Roger, the pet rat of his friend, Otto, but Roger has disappeared. Also, Otto is coming home tomorrow! How will they find Roger before Otto gets home? Never fear, its Mimi and Maty to the rescue!

Book reviewed by Laura B., Youth Technology Librarian

By lbos on September 2, 2013 Categories: For Grades 2-4, Picks by Laura B., Realistic Stories

I Feel Better with a Frog in My Throat: History’s Strangest Cures by Carlyn Beccia

syndetics-lcIn the 2014 Bluestem nominee entitled I Feel Better with a Frog in My Throat: History’s Strangest Cures by Carlyn Beccia, many unusual health remedies are discussed. Take a nasty sore throat for example: Should you put a frog in your mouth, rub skunk oil on your chest, wear a necklace made from earthworms, or tie a dirty sock around your neck? I bet you are wondering where these remedies came from and if they actually work. For the answers to these questions, you’ll have to read this fun yet informative book! But I will tell you that while one of these remedies might actually help your throat, they will all give you a stomach ache!

Book reviewed by Carol C., Elementary School Liaison

By lbos on August 26, 2013 Categories: For Grades 2-4, For Grades 4-6, Non-fiction, Picks by Carol C.

Houdini: The Handcuff King by Jason Lutes

syndetics-lcCompelling black-and-white illustrations animate a single stunt from Houdini’s magic career—when he jumped from the Harvard Bridge with his hands and feet bound in handcuffs—in the graphic novel, Houdini: The Handcuff King by Jason Lutes. This book suggests that Houdini’s wife, Bess, helped him perform his escapes by passing a key or a pick to him when they kissed. I would recommend this book to graphic novel fans!

Book reviewed by Erin E., Youth Services Programming Coordinator

By lbos on August 19, 2013 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Graphic Novels, Picks by Erin E.

Bomb: The Race to Build — and Steal — the World’s Most Dangerous Weapon by Steve Sheinkin

syndetics-lcThis is one history book that reads more like a spy thriller.  It’s the story of the atom bomb, perhaps the most destructive weapon known to mankind.  Get ready for a wild ride with genius inventors, spies, counterspies, and powerful politicians — all players in this piece of 20th century history.  And hold on as you follow the true twists, turns, and treachery in this exciting account of how the atom bomb came to be.  A great read!

Book reviewed by Mary Ann S., Assistant Head of Youth Services

By lbos on August 12, 2013 Categories: For Grades 4-6, Non-fiction, Picks by Mary Ann S.