News from Youth Services

News from Youth Services Blog

Ophie’s Ghosts

by Justina Ireland

ophie's ghosts book cover
JF IRELAND, J.

Ophelia, or Ophie, wakes up one night to her father telling her she needs to get out of the house. Moments later, some men from town come and set it on fire. It is only later that Ophie discovers her father was killed the night before, and that his ghost came to give her the message. She and her mother flee Georgia for Pittsburgh, where they must live with Ophie’s sweet great aunt, but also her horrible aunt and cousins. Seriously, they are really unpleasant! Ophie’s mother gets a job as a maid in a very rich family’s home, and soon Ophie must come to work there as well. All the while, she keeps seeing ghosts, and what’s more, the ghosts know she can see them. They start to ask her for things, things they need said or done so they can pass on. Ophie stumbles across a mystery at her job, and her curiosity and desire to help cause her to put herself in danger, all in the name of solving the mystery and helping one very charming ghost.   

This book takes place in the 1920s, and Ophelia’s family is black. Her father is killed because he tried to vote. Even though black men got the right to vote in 1870, it was basically impossible in the South at that time. And even though Ophie and her mom come to the north, they still experience a lot of racism and bad treatment. The story is a hard and sad one, but also very exciting, and by the end, I was so proud of Ophie for her bravery and compassion. If you like your ghost stories with some historical facts sprinkled in, pick up Ophie’s Ghosts by Justina Ireland. I listened to the book, which was wonderful, so if you like audiobooks, give it a listen.  

Follow that Frog!

by Philip C. Stead

follow that frog book cover
E STEAD, P.

Follow That Frog! is an adventurous story about little Sadie’s elderly Aunt Josephine, who recounts the days when she was in the jungles of Peru on a scientific expedition. Well, while Aunt Josephine was busy cataloging amphibians, she came across a gigantic frog, the biggest frog she ever did see. That huge beast jumped right out from the deep forest, and proceeded to eat up her friend. And then, he hopped away! Oh goodness. 

Check this book out to see some of Aunt Josephine’s wild adventures, and find out if she could ever find that silly green frog again!

Across the Desert

by Dusti Bowling

across the desert book cover
JF BOWLING, D.

Jolene has become friends online with Addie, who livestreams when she flies her ultralight plane. When Jolene sees Addie crash her plane in the desert, she knows she has to move quickly to find her. Jolene leaves a note for her mom and takes off, hoping to get to Addie as fast as she can. Does Jolene find Addie? Read on to find out. 

Hide and Geek

by T.P. Jagger

hide and geek book cover
JF JAGGER, T.

Meet the GEEKs:  Gina, Edgar, Elena, and Kevin–best friends who are determined to save their hometown of Elmwood, the former headquarters of the famous toy maker Maxine Van Houten.  At one time Maxine’s toy the Bamboozler put the town on the map.  But now Maxine has died, her heirs have bankrupted the company, and the toy factory is closing down.  The only thing that can save the town and keep the friends together is solving Maxine’s last puzzle, a scavenger hunt with a priceless treasure at the end.   This is a great readalike for fans of Escape From Mr Lemoncello’s Library.

Bunbun & Bonbon: Hoppy Go Lucky

by Jess Keating

bunbun and bonbon: hoppy go lucky book cover
J GRAPH KEATING, J.

Bunbun and Bonbon have lost their luck. Will they be able to get it back? They ask their friends Scout Von Fluffington, Tom the duck, and Rosie Stardrop Sparklepants the unicorn for help. Is there a good-luck trap and a waterfall involved? Read the story to find out!