Put this book on your must-read list if you are a fan of stories where the main character must struggle to overcome real-life obstacles. Although Aubrey is only eleven, she has had her share of hardships. Her father and younger sister suddenly pass away in an accident. Then, her mother is unable to cope with their deaths and drives away from the house, leaving Aubrey to fend for herself. Aubrey quietly accepts her abandonment and lives alone for days before her grandmother discovers the truth and whisks her away to her house in Vermont. With a new place to live and new people in her life, Aubrey searches for what will help her move forward but won’t let her forget precious memories. There are many moments of hope and happiness in this book, but also many sad moments, so get your tissues ready!
Book reviewed by Amy M., Youth Services Programming Assistant
It’s hard to be a witch in modern times because no one believes in magic anymore. So what is an out-of-work witch who makes terrible tasting brews to do? You guessed it–become a lunch lady in the school cafeteria.
Perfect, right? Except there’s one problem. A student named Madison guesses she is a witch and insists that Grunhilda give her a spell. Grunhilda plans on brewing an intelligence potion but the ancestors have other ideas. They secretly change the spell so it turns Madison into a frog.
A frog loose in the school–you can imagine the consequences! Will Madison be dissected in science class? Will she be trampled by students in the hallway? And most importantly, will she stay a frog forever or will Grunhilda be able to turn her back into a girl?
Book reviewed by Mary S., Youth Services Department Head
This French author first got my attention with Press Here, which came out in the U.S. a few years ago. He has several interactive books. They look very simple…and yet are so ingenious! Tullet takes the idea of a touch screen and puts it in a book. Readers are invited to push, rub, tilt, and otherwise interact with the books. To see the results of your actions just turn the page.
Book reviewed by Erin E., Youth Services Programming Coordinator
Midnight Gulch is a magical place, or at least it used to be, but that was before the curse. Now, there is just a snicker of that magic hanging in Midnight Gulch, and unless they can end the curse, a snicker of magic is all that will remain. Felicity’s mama is cursed with a wandering heart, which means that whenever Felicity and her sister think they might have found a home, their mama packs up their van and moves them. This time, their mama has brought them back to her hometown, Midnight Gulch. After meeting a new friend, Jonah, and learning more about Midnight Gulch, Felicity wants to stay there and call the town her home. However, with her mama’s curse and the town’s curse, it looks like Felicity might be destined to wander with her mama. Can she find a way to end the curse on Midnight Gulch? Maybe her new friend Jonah can help or maybe they can get help from the mysterious Beedle who does good deeds around town for people.
Book reviewed by Laura B., Youth Technology Librarian
Pablo’s family moves around a lot. On his first day at his new school they take a trip to the Empire State Building, and they ride the famous New York subway to get there. Along the way, Pablo and his classmate, Alicia get separated from the rest of the class and have to find the group, using regular trains, express trains, and walking through the streets of New York City. As we go on the journey with them, we learn about how the subway was constructed, and other fun facts about the largest city in the United States. Each page and illustration has so much detail; you can spend plenty of time just looking at the different people and sights. The illustrator also has a fun story about how he researched the subway before he drew the pictures, and includes himself in most of the pages for an extra hide and seek activity while you’re reading. Check this book out for an adventure in another part of the country!
Book reviewed by Claire B., Youth Outreach Librarian