When you ask someone to give you a hand, you don’t mean for them to cut their hand off and give it you, right? What about when someone tells you to listen up? Does that mean that you tilt your head so that your ear is listening to the sky? No, these are just sayings people use, but for Mac and Mac, Noodlehead brothers, they take these sayings literally. After all, there is nothing in their noodle heads. So, when their mom talks about dreaming of a garden, they decide they are going to make it happen. This way they can get cake too. How do they know that? Can they see the future or is it because their mom always makes cake for them when they help her. Now, they just have to figure out how to make a garden.
Book reviewed by Laura B., Youth Technology Librarian
Making friends at a new school is hard, and its even harder when you throw up on someone’s brand-new shoes during recess. Lily just wants to crawl into her imaginary turtle shell or better yet never ever go to school again. But, luckily for her, she meets Darby, who doesn’t seem to care what other people think. Lily and Darby form the Rizzlerunk Club with their own secret handshake, an invisible clubhouse, and candy bracelets. Everything is going great until Darby’s former best friend and original mean girl Jill returns. Suddenly, Lily finds herself getting into trouble that she never could have imagined such as accidentally shaving off her eyebrows, thinking about shoplifting candy, and even secretly painting the school’s monkey bars. Is it time to quit the Rizzlerunk Club or simply time to oust its newest member–Queenbee Jill? With its hilarious hijinks and comical illustrations, this is a great read for 3rd and 4th graders.
Book reviewed by Mary S., Youth Services Department Head
A house cat named Simon declares to lion, tiger, and panther that he is also a cat, just like them. And well, the big cats don’t exactly agree. As the big cats explain what makes a cat a cat– having long whiskers and tails, sharp teeth and claws, and eyes that can see in the dark, Simon helpfully points out that he actually does have all those things… they’re just smaller. This book’s simple story structure and expressive artwork make it perfect for storytime!
Book reviewed by Erin E., Youth Services Programming Coordinator
Stella is a Mexican-American in 3rd grade, growing up in Arlington Heights (yes, our next door neighbor!). She loves marine animals, especially fish, but she has trouble speaking up in school and feeling like she belongs because sometimes she uses Spanish instead of English or doesn’t have the right pronunciation. She doesn’t even fit in with her family, where her Spanish isn’t quite good enough. A new kid, Stanley, joins her class and while she wants to be friends with him, she is too shy to ever talk to him. She also has to do an oral presentation in class, which terrifies her, but she gets help from her older brother, her best friend, and eventually Stanley, who she befriends at the Shedd Aquarium. Can she find the courage to speak up and find her place in the world? This is a story of friendship, bravery, and individuality with funny moments and great illustrations throughout.
Book reviewed by Claire B., Youth Outreach Librarian
Wavie and her mother haven’t always had a lot of money, but they’ve been happy together in their trailer home surrounded by thoughtful neighbors and friends. After her mother passes away and she is forced to live with a previously unknown (and unkind) aunt in rural “Convict Holler,” Wavie struggles to stay positive in this different new life. With the help of some new friends, Wavie may just find a little hope along with some smiles going forward while trying to answer some puzzling questions about her family’s past. This title is recommended for those in 5th grade and up.
Book reviewed by Amy M., Youth Services Assistant