Staff Picks 4 Kids Category: For Grades 4-6

Her Fearless Run: Kathrine Switzer’s Historic Boston Marathon by Kim Caffee

Her Fearless Run: Kathrine Switzer's Historic Boston Marathon Book CoverKathrine Switzer grew up in a time when people believed girls were too fragile and weak to participate in sports. So, whenever she would go run and sweat, people found it strange. Eventually, she gained attention of the running coach of a local school. He let her train with the men’s team. When she hears about the Boston Marathon for the first time, Kathrine knew that she had to run the 26.2 miles of the race. Many people doubted her ability to run that far, but Kathrine trained hard to show that women were capable of running a marathon. If you love hearing about people who work hard and have had an impact on the world: this book is for you!

Book reviewed by Katie D., Youth Outreach Liaison

The Night Diary by Veera Hiranandani

The Night Diary book coverThis book made me hungry for Indian food. One of the things Nisha loves to do is prepare food, which she does with Kazi, who is her family’s cook. Kazi also happens to be Muslim, while Nisha’s family is Hindu. Nisha never thought about this before, until suddenly India is being split into two countries– a new India for Hindu people and Pakistan for Muslim people. Gandhi doesn’t think this is right, and neither does Nisha. The book is told through diary entries that Nisha addresses to her mother, whom she never knew. Her mother was Muslim, which also makes Nisha feel conflicted about her identity. This is a well-written and interesting historical fiction.  The narrator has an authentic voice and the story tells about a part of India’s history with which many kids may be unfamiliar.

Book reviewed by Erin E., Youth Services Programming Coordinator

When the Stars Come Out by Nicola Edwards

When The Stars Come Out Book CoverWhen the Stars Come Out by Nicola Edwards, and illustrated by Lucy Cartwright is a celebration of night time. This fact filled book is full of so much fascinating information. Ever wonder about the history and formation of the night sky? Looking for more information about habitats at night and the nocturnal animals that live in them? Have you ever wondered about what happens when we sleep? This book is a joy to read and will surely satisfy curious minds. The illustrations in this engaging book perfectly capture the magic and stillness of our night time world.

A great book to share or enjoy alone!

Book reviewed by Amy S., Youth Outreach and Programming Assistant

The Many Worlds of Albie Bright by Christopher Edge

The Many Worlds of Albie Bright Book CoverWhat if an infinite number of universes with an infinite number of possibilities exist? What if you’re the person you love the most? After Albie Bright’s mother dies, his famous scientist father tries to comfort him by telling him about parallel universes. He tells Albie that according to this theory, there is a universe where his mother is alive, healthy, and happy. Since his father seems to be too busy to spend time with him, Albie makes the decision to use his mom’s laptop and what he knows about quantum physics to create a way to transfer between universes. He’s not prepared for many of the differences he encounters, and he realizes things aren’t always better in these different universes. Albie learns a lot about himself and his family as he travels through space and time.

Book reviewed by Katie D., Youth Outreach Liaison

The Serpent’s Secret by Sayantani DasGupta

The Serpents Secret book coverKiranmala comes home from school on her 12th birthday to discover that her parents have disappeared from their New Jersey home, there’s a rakkosh demon on her front lawn, and all those stories her parents have always told her about being an Indian princess from another dimension full of demons and magic– well, it turns out it was all true! In order to bring her parents back, Kiranmala and two princes must travel to the Kingdom Beyond, where Kiranmala uncovers surprising facts in her family tree, and comes into her own as a strong young woman.  What sets this novel apart from the rest is the playful tone. I mean, how would YOU react if you’re living a normal boring life and are suddenly meeting talking birds and half-demons? Fans of Rick Riordan will love this action-packed new series!

Book reviewed by Erin E., Youth Services Programming Coordinator