Sunday, February 28, 2010

Global Warming and the Dinosaurs by Caroline Arnold

Arnold, Caroline Global Warming and the Dinosaurs, illustrated by Laurie Caple. 40 pgs. Clarion Books, 2009. $17.00. Language - G; Sexual Content - G; Violence - G. Dinosaurs are usually thought to have lived in warm climates. This book proves otherwise. Dinosaur skeletons were found in Alaska, Antarctica, Australia and more. This book talks about the dinosaurs survived the winter, stayed warm and were able to see in the dark. It talks about many different kinds of dinosaurs as well. Since we are having to deal with global warming today, the dinosaur fossils help scientists understand what a warmer Earth was like a long time ago. This was a very informative book, but it was pretty long for a picture book. EL - ADVISABLE. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher.

Shake, Rattle, and Turn that Noise Down!: How Elvis Shook up Music, Me, and Mom by Mark Alan Stamaty

Stamaty, Mark Alan Shake, Rattle and Turn that Noise Down!: How Elvis Shook up Music, Me, and Mom, 40 pgs. Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2010. $17.99. Langauge - G; Sexual Content - G; Violence - G. On his eighth birthday, Mark receives a radio of his own. As Elvis becomes popular, Mark begins to listen to him at home. Mark's mom becomes very upset and doesn't like this new type of music. She thinks it will get him into trouble. Mark on the other hand loves Elvis and starts to even comb his hair like Elvis. He can do such a good imitation of Elvis, that his scout group has him perform at their annual blue and gold dinner. In the end, Mark performs well and his mom realizes that it is just music, and her boy will not grow up to be a juvenile deliquent. Mark wrote this book to "communicate the joy and power of rock 'n' roll in its early days." I didn't like the illustrations, and it was written in comic book style. The text was all in caps, and made it difficult to read the text. EL, MS - OPTIONAL. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher.

Looking Closely Around the Pond by Frank Serafini

Serafini, Frank Looking Closely Around the Pond, 40 pgs. Kids Can Press Ltd, 2010. $16.95. Language - G; Sexual Content - G; Violence -G. This is a fun book that teaches about wildlife that lives within and around the pond. It begins with asking the reader, "What do you see?" and it shows a small portion of a picture. Then on the next page, the picture is revealed. You might think it is a sea shell or butterfly wings, but on the next page, it turns out to be a box turtle. Children will become familiar with mallard ducks, dragonflies, water lilies, and cattails to name a few. This book encourages children to ask questions, to use their imaginations, and it follows a predictable format. It would be good to use for younger grade science. EL(K-3) - ESSENTIAL. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Assassin's Apprentice by S.R. Vaught

Vaught, S R and Redmond, JB Oathbreaker: Assassin's Apprentice, 374 pgs. Bloomsberry, 2009. 

Language - PG (7 swears, 0 "f"), Sexual Content - G; Violence - G; 

Aron, a 14-year-old farmer boy, is scared of Harvest. Harvest is when members of Stone go out to collect boys and girls to learn the way of Stone, and it's tomorrow. When members of Stone show up to test Aron, his two sisters, and six brothers, Aron is chosen and is no longer part of his own family. He has to leave everything and everyone he has ever known for the unknown. 

I love this thrilling tale of adventure. I love the excitement and the sorrow and the characters and everything else between the covers. 

MS, HS - ADVISABLE. Student Reviewer: CH

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Chasing the Bear by Robert Parker

Parker, Robert B Chasing the Bear, 169 pgs. Phiolmel Books, 2009. Language - PG-13 (29 swears, 0 "f"), Sexual Content - G; Violence - PG; Spencer is talking to 'the One' about his past that she doesn't know a lot about. He tells her about his friend Jeannie and the adventures he had when he was 14 and 15. I expected something completely different when I picked out this book and it took me by surprise. I think that this is a pretty good book, but it was a little boring just reading about Spencer's past experiences. MS - OPTIONAL. Reviewer: CH

The Dreamer by Pam Munoz Ryan

Ryan, Pam Munoz & Sis, Peter The Dreamer, 353 pgs. Scholastic Press, 2010. Language - G, Sexual Content - G; Violence - G; Neftali loves learning new words and adding things to his collection. He can read well and is an excellent writer. The only problem is that his father doesn't approve. Neftali wants to be a poet and his father keeps insisting he will be a doctor, dentist, or business man. I love that Neftali never gives up his dreams. Even though his father discourages him, he perseveres and keeps following his dreams. ES, MS - ADVISABLE. Reviewer: CH

Bystander by James Preller

Preller, James Bystander, 223 pgs. Feiwel and Friends, 2009. Language - PG (7 swears, 0 "f"), Sexual Content - G; Violence - G; Eric, his little brother, and his mom are moving to Long Island. Eric meets Griffin and his group before school starts, so when it does start he hangs out with them. As life goes on, Eric discovers that David is the butt of jokes for Griffin. Griffin and his group pick on David all the time, but Eric doesn't participate in it. Then why does he feel so bad? Eric is a good example of "new bee pressure." When you move someplace new it's hard to fit in, so you go where you're first accepted. I like that Eric has the courage to stand up to his friends and change them when they won't stop doing what he knows is wrong. ES, MS - ADVISABLE. Reviewer: CH

Cricket Man by Phyllis Naylor - ADVISABLE

Naylor, Phyllis Reynolds Cricket Man, 196 pgs. Atheneum, 2008.

Language - PG (17 swears, 0 "f"), Sexual Content - G; Violence - G

Kenny goes to school, has friends, skateboards, and gets in trouble like everyone else, but what no one knows is that he has a secret identity. Summer mornings Kenny is Cricket Man. He goes into his pool every summer morning and saves bugs from their doom. But can Cricket Man save his friend Jodie from herself if she doesn't want to be saved?

I believe that everyone can be a hero if they want to. Cricket Man does a good job of presenting the idea that you can be a hero by just being a friend. I think that this book belongs in every collection.

EL, MS - ADVISABLE. Reviewer: CH

Dawn by Kevin Brooks

Brooks, Kevin Dawn, 250 pgs. Chicken House, 2009. Language - R (68 swears, 16 "f"), Sexual Content - PG; Violence - PG; Dawn has one goal in life: to kill God. Dawn also has one problem with her goal: how do you kill something that doesn't exist? I thought this book was really boring. There wasn't any action until the last 50 pages or so and it was just a story of a depressed girl and her depressed mom. Both those factors made Dawn really hard to read. HS - OPTIONAL. Reviewer: CH

Council of Evil by Andy Briggs

Briggs, Andy Council of Evil, 234 pgs. Walker, 2008. Language - PG (3 swears, 0 "f"), Sexual Content - G; Violence - PG; Jake is the leader of the school bullies. He makes others scared of him when a punch in the gut would make him double over too. Now the roles are switched and Jake is the one afraid to punch his bully back. I loved reading this book. I love the plot, the action, the suspense, the secrets, everything. I recommend this book to everyone. MS - ADVISABLE. Reviewer: CH

Lawn to Lawn by Dan Yaccarino

Yaccarino, Dan Lawn to Lawn. Alfred A. Knopf (Random), 2010. $17.99. PICTURE BOOK. When Pearl's parents pack up to move, they leave behind Pearl's lawn ornaments. Afraid of being carted off into the garbage truck, the four lawn ornaments set off to find Pearl. The book tells of their journey. Though I was unsure about this book at first, I did become engaged in these lawn ornaments' adventure. This book allows for discussions about personification and taking control of a person's own destiny. EL, MS –OPTIONAL. Brent Smith, Reading Teacher.

Oh, the Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss

Seuss, Dr. Oh, the Places You'll Go (Party Edition). Random House, 2010. $17.99. PICTURE BOOK This is a republication of the Dr. Seuss book about an anonymous narrator who encourages the reader to "go" places in life. This narrator offers life advice on how to "move mountains." The book Oh the Places You'll Go is a delightful Seuss book that encourages readers to aim high in life, but this Party Edition only adds a little glitter on the front and back covers. An owner of the original, published in 1990, has no reason to repurchase this Party Edition, but someone who does not own the book might find the glittery cover fun enough to purchase. EL, MS, HS - OPTIONAL. Brent Smith, Reading Teacher.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Ten Days and Nine Nights an Adoption Story by Yumi Heo

Heo, Yumi Ten Days and Nine Nights an Adoption Story, 40 pgs. Schwartz and Wade, 2009. $16.99. Told from first person point of view, a little girl marks her calendar every day, counting down the days and nights. She helps her dad redecorate her room and buy new a crib, she washes her stuffed bear, and finally her baby sister arrives after ten days and nine nights. The family adopted a little girl from Korea and are a happy little family. EL(K-3) - ESSENTIAL. Anna Mattheus, Elementary teacher.

The Humblebee Hunter by Deborah Hopkinson

Hopkinson, Deborah The Humblebee Hunter, 32 pgs. Hyperion Book CH, 2010. $16.99. Language - G; Sexual Content -G; Violence -G. Etty wants to play outside and would rather help her father with experiments then cook in the kitchen with her mother. Her father, Charles Darwin, is constantly questioning why things are they way they are. He becomes particularly interested in the Humblebee. He wants to know how many flowers it will land on in one minute. After having Etty help him dust the bee with flour, they time the bee for one minute, following the flour trail around the yard. This is a short, simple story portraying Charles Darwin's family life. His family was said to have helped him with many experiments. This can be used to introduce the scientific method. EL - OPTIONAL. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher.

Pip: the Story of Olive by Kim Kane

Kane, Kim. Pip: The Story of Olive. David Fickling Books, 2008. Pgs. 240. Language: G, Sexual Content: G, Violence: G.

Olive lives an unusual life. She has never known her father. Her mother is hardly ever home and her only companionship is her friend, Mathilda, who lives farther into town. When her only friend decided to become her enemy, Olive almost gives up on life until she looks into a mirror and gets introduced to Pip Garnout, her twin that only she can see, but everyboy can hear. With Pip’s help, Olive decides to try and find out what her father is up to and where he lives. Through a little detective and a little bit of courage, Olive might just achieve her dream, but will Olive’s father be what she expects? Will Olive ever get another friend? Will Mathilda forever be her enemy? A unique realistic fiction story about friendship, self-discovery, and adventure. Although the story is slower-paced, the characters are fun to read about and Olive’s inner dialogue is worth the read. Readers who like realistic fiction and adventure will enjoy reading this book. EL(4 to 6). OPTIONAL. Reviewer: Kira, Youth Services Librarian, HUN Public Library.

Faces of the Moon by Bob Crelin

Crelin, Bob Faces of the Moon illustrated by Leslie Evans 40 pgs. Charlesbridge, 2009. PICTURE BOOK/NON-FICTION. $16.95. This is a wonderful book to be used when teaching about the different moon phases! In verse and rhyme, the author takes us through each phase of the moon. Each page is accompanied by a die-cut of the specific moon phase. The pages also have tabs with a picture of the phase of the moon that can be quickly referred to and found. Included in the back is more detailed information on the phases of the moon as well as "Moon Memo-Rhymes" (fun ways to remember Moon facts). A fabulous book! EL-ESSENTIAL. Whitney, Library-Teacher.

Break by Hannah Moskowitz

Moskowitz, Hannah Break, 262 pgs. Simon Pulse, 2009. Language - PG-13 (184 swears, 87 "f"), Sexual Content - PG-13; Violence - PG-13; Jonah wants to be stronger. How does he try to accomplish this? His goal is to break every bone in his body, because when they heal they grow back stronger than they were before. I think that this book has way too much swearing. But on the other hand, I love the support and compation that Jonah and his younger brother Jess share. HS - OPTIONAL. Reviewer: CH

Hank Zipzer Dump Trucks and Dogsleds by Henry Winkler

Winkler, Henry and Oliver, Lin Hank Zipzer Dump Trucks and Dogsleds: I'm on my way Mom! 155 pgs. Grosset & Dunlap, 2009. Language - G, Sexual Content - G; Violence - G; Mrs. Zipzer is having a baby early and Mr. Zipzer, Hank, and his sister Emily are six and a half hours away on a skiing trip with a storm rolling in. How are they going to get there? Will they make it in time for the baby? I thought this was a really funny book with surprises popping up everywhere. I think that this book would be good if you need a good laugh. Hank is hilarious and the rest of the Zipzers have their quirks too. ES - OPTIONAL. Reviewer: CH

Deep-Space Disco by Erik Craddock

Craddock, Erik Stone Rabbit: Deep-Space Disco, 96 pgs. Random House, 2009. Language - G, Sexual Content - G; Violence - G; When the hero is sent into space in the place of a wanted alien, will he get out alive? Will he ever see Earth again? I think this is a cute and funny, quick read. If you have 15 or 20 extra minutes, this is a fun book to pick up. ES - OPTIONAL. Reviewer: CH

Quest for the Silver Tiger by Yoyo - ADVISABLE

YOYO Quest for the Silver Tiger (Vermonia #1), 207 pgs. Candlewick Press, 2009. 978-0763645540

Content: G

Doug, Jim, Naomi, and Mel are just regualar humans with regular teenage problems. That is, until Mel is taken and Doug, Tim, and Naomi get transported to another planet to try and save her. Then they find out they have magical powers and are supposed to save the new planet they're on. 

I think that this book is too short, but is very exciting. The adventure of traveling to a new world with new creatures, people, and surroundings just draws me in. I think these characters will draw you in too if you pick it up. 


Reviewer: CH

Monday, February 22, 2010

How the Nobble was Finally Found by C.K. Williams and Stephen Gammell

Gammell, Stephen, and Williams, C. K. How the Nobble was Finally Found, 40 pgs. Harcourt Children's Books, 2009. $18.00. Language - G; Sexual Content - G; Violence - G. The nobble is a lonely creature that lives somewhere between Wednesday and Thursday and sleeps at the bottom of number eight. He lives in a fantastical world and is happy until one day he realizes that there might be more out there. He saw a glow in the distance and began to follow it. Soon he was a in a city filled with unfamiliar words and things. By overcoming his fear, he is able to meet another nobble, and realizes that he is not alone. This book teaches that you have to have courage to go out and get what you want most in the world. EL - ESSENTIAL. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher.

The Hungry Ghosts by Julius Lester

Lester, Julius The Hungry Ghosts, 40 pgs. Dial, 2009. $16.99. Language - G; Sexual Content - G; Violence - G. A small boy named Malcolm David discovers that there are ghosts that come out at night in a cemetery near his house. Their loud wails scare him, but after chasing them down, he learns that they aren't trying to be scary. The noise that the three ghosts are making is actually coming from their stomachs, they are starving! They can't figure out what to eat since they are ghosts though. Malcolm has to clean his room, and discovers that the old leftover food in his room has turned into ghosts. He has blueberry, apple, orange and banana ghosts. The ghosts explain to him that everything has a ghost. He takes his fruit ghosts to the three ghosts in the cemetery and they can finally eat a meal. This picture book uses a lot of good imagery. It could be used to teach metaphors and similes. The story was a bit strange though. EL - OPTIONAL. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher.

Adventure of Meno: Wet Friend! by Tony and Angela DiTerlizzi

DiTerlizzi, Tony and Angela Adventure of Meno: Wet Friend! Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2009. PICTURE BOOK. $9.99. The sequel to the aforementioned Big Fun (weird book). I found this equally as weird. The book is about Meno and Yamagoo and their friend Wishi, who makes dreams come true. Meno and Yamagoo wish for her to make them another friend. She makes them a "zanzibar" which ends up being a fish. I seriously can't figure out the language in this book. It sounds like a foreigner wrote it, but maybe it helps expand kids' imaginations?? Wouldn't recommend these ones. PRE-K-Not recommended. Whitney, Library-Teacher.

Adventure of Meno: Big Fun! by Tony and Angela DiTerlizzi

DiTerlizzi, Tony and Angela Adventure of Meno: Big Fun! 40 pgs. Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2009. PICTURE BOOK. $9.99. This was honestly the weirdest book to me. The wording was very awkward and so was the story. Meno, a space elf, and his friend Yamagoo have a snack together and then "make big fun" by passing gas. I honestly didn't get this book. The one bright spot were the bright and retro illustrations. PRE-K-Not recommended. Whitney, Library-Teacher.

Kitten's Spring by Eugenie Fernandes

Fernandes, Eugenie Kitten's Spring 24 pgs. Kids Can Press, 2010. PICTURE BOOK. $14.95. This is a cute and simple book that takes us on a journey with kitten through the outside world. We go along as she observes, both through sight and sound, the wonders of nature. The artwork in this book is what really makes it unique. It is a combination of self-hardening clay, acrylic paint, and mixed media-collage. Very interesting and unique. EL-ADVISABLE. Whitney, Library-Teacher.

Working: Then and Now by Robin Nelson

Nelson, Robin Working: Then and Now 23 pgs. Lerner Publications Company, 2008 (originally printed in 1971). PICTURE BOOK/NON FICTION. $15.95. This is a very easy-to-read book about what working was like in the past compared to what it is like to work now. Some vocabulary words are highlighted and the definitions can be found in the back of the book. Also included is a working timeline and working facts. Although this was recently re-printed, the photographs seem very old-fashioned to me. Besides the cover, it looks like a book that could be from the 80s. EL-OPTIONAL. Whitney, Library-Teacher.

Friday, February 19, 2010

The Vast Fields of Ordinary by Nick Burd

Burd, Nick The Vast Fields of Ordinary pgs. 320 Dial Language~R, Sexual Content~R; Violence~PG-13

Dade has only one summer left before he leaves his small Iowa town for college. It can’t come soon enough. His parent’s marriage is about to crumble and Dade knows his parents are just trying to stay together until he leaves. His secret relationship with Pablo is also on the rocks. . .but this doesn’t bother Dade as much as he thought it would. Dade is also deciding whether to come out of the closet. It seems his summer is going to be the worst ever until Dade meets Alex. Alex and Dade begin a relationship that starts with casual sex but quickly progresses to something deeper. This title could almost be considered “chick-lit” for gay teens. However, there is more depth and substance to this story that you expect.

This is NOT a book for conservative schools. In addition to swears including many, many ‘f’s, the language is just coarse. The characters frequently use recreational/illegal drugs. There are sexual encounters that while not extremely graphic allow the reader to definitely know what is going on! For example “I kept my face buried in Pablo’s pillow the entire time. When it was over, he stood by the bed and frowned at me. ‘I think I liked you better blond.’” I feel it is important for literature such as this to be accessible to teens, but I would leave that up to the public libraries to house and defend.

PUBLIC ONLY –OPTIONAL Allison Madsen~Teen Librarian-SJO Public Library

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

14 Cows for America by Carmen Agra Deedy

Deedy, Agra Carmen 14 Cows for America, 36 pgs. Peachtree Publishers, 2009. $17.95. Language - G; Sexual Content - G; Violence - G. Kimeli grew up in a small village of Kenya. He won a scholarship to study in the United States and witnessed September 11, 2001. He was so devastated, he went home to Kenya and told his people of the tragedy. The Maasai value cows and believe they symbolize life. He pledged a cow, that he had saved his whole life for, to the United States. The village elders blessed this cow and then donated 13 more. This herd is protected and will never be slaughtered. "The Maasai wish is that every time Americans hear this simple story of fourteen cows, they will find a measure of comfort and peace." EL, MS, HS - ESSENTIAL. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher.

Out of This World The Amazing Search for an Alien Planet by Jacob Berkowitz

Berkowitz, Jacob Out of This World The Amazing Search for an Alien Earth, 40 pgs. Kids Can Press, 2009. $8.95. Language - G; Sexual Content - G; Violence - G. What is an astrobiologist? It a scientist who explores for alien life. In specific, astrobiologists are looking for an Alien Earth. An Alien Earth would be able to support life, just like Earth can. Astrobiologists use high-tech space gear to look and listen for an Alien Earth. You will learn how extreme lifeforms here on Earth help scientists understand possible alien life in other places. It contains great pictures of space and a funny alien named Ambrosia from the planet Xenon guides you through the book. EL, MS, HS - OPTIONAL. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher.

The Man Who Flies with Birds by Carole Barbuny Vogel and Yossi Leshem

Leshem, Yossi and Vogel, Garbuny Carole The Man Who flies with Birds, 64 pgs. Kar-Ben Publishing, 2009. $18.95. Language - G; Sexual Content - G; Violence - G. Yossi Leshem knew from a young age that he wanted to become a raptor expert. He joined the Israeli Air Force and began studying and tracking the migratory patterns of over 500 million birds that fly over his nation each year. His purpose is to drastically reduce the number of bird stikes to the airplanes. Whenever a bird strikes an airplane, the plane crashes resulting in millions of dollars lost. By tracking the birds' migrations, he can prevent crashes and save lives in the process. This can be used to tie in Earth science (magnetism), wild life biology, and technology. EL, MS, HS - OPTIONAL. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Double Trouble by Cathy Hopkins

Hopkins, Cathy Double Trouble (Zodiac Girls), 161 p. Kingfisher, 2009. $5.99. Language: PG (OMG’s). Eve, 12, has always lurked in the background behind her older twin, Lilith. This month, however, Eve is the Zodiac Girl – and she is getting more attention than she may really want. What happens when twins start breaking away from each other in order to find their own destinies? Eve is about to find out. Chloe has always dreamed of being The Zodiac Girls books are pretty cute and, in paperback, so they are a reasonable price. EL, MS – OPTIONAL. Cindy, Libray Teacher

Bridesmaids’ Club by Cathy Hopkins

Hopkins, Cathy Bridesmaids’ Club (Zodiac Girls), 153 p. Kingfisher, 2009. $5.99. Content: G. Chloe has been planning her “job” as a bridesmaid for one of her older sisters for many years – now it looks as if her time has come. BUT – Marcie is marrying Sam, who thinks the Bridesmaids’ Club is silly and he want an exciting theme wedding instead. When Chloe gets picked as this month’s Zodiac Girl, she has no idea what a ride she is in for! This is a very cute paperback series, especially for princess types! EL, MS – OPTIONAL. Cindy, Libray Teacher

The Chestnut King by N.D. Wilson - ESSENTIAL

Wilson, N.D. The Chestnut King, 482 p. Random House, 2010. $17.99. 

The evil, immortal witch Nimiane is determined to do whatever she must to kill Henry York Macabee’s father , suck the life out of his entire family and control the entire world. Only 12 tears old, Henry and his friends and his cousins must challenge the world in order to find a way to kill an immortal. 

I must admit, I wasn’t too interested in 100 Cupboards, but Dandelion Fire and The Chestnut King totally made up for my earlier lack of enthusiasm. The action is non-stop, the plotting makes sense and there are some very wonderful twists and turns along the way. I snuck time from work just so that I could finish! 


Cindy, Library Teacher

Ghost Town At Sundown by Mary Pope Osborne

Osborne Pope, Mary Ghost Town At Sundown, 96 pages. $6.40. Language-G (0 swears), Sexual content -G; Violence-G. Jake and Annie are out for another adventure in their magic tree house. They need to help the girl who is stuck in the book, but they have to find the 3 m's to help this girl get out. This week their adventure is to go to New Orleans to help jazz musician Louis Armstrong keep pursuing jazz music so he doesn’t change the way his future turns out. When the kids are hiding, they find out that New Orleans is haunted. Will they be haunted for life... read more to find out. EL- ADVISABLE. Student Reviewer: MM

Sunday, February 14, 2010

She Sang Promise The Story of a Betty Mae Jumper, Seminole Tribal Leader by Han Godown Annino

Annino, Godown Jan She Sang Promise The Story of Betty Mae Jumper, Seminole Tribal Leader, 48 pgs. National Geographic Children's Books, 2010. $17.95. Betty Mae Jumper was born into a mixed marriage and had trouble fitting in. She grew up in the Everglades and was known for her way with animals. After meeting someone who could read, she decided this was for her, and wanted to go to school. She excelled and went on to become a nurse. She even wrestled alligators for tourists. This is an incredible story of a women who becomes a voice for her people, and who even became the first female elected Seminole tribal leader. EL, MS, HS - ESSENTIAL. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher.

Clang! Clang! Beep! Beep! Listen To The City by Robert Burleigh

Burleigh, Robert Clang!Clang!Beep!Beep! Listen to the City, 32 pgs. Simon & Schuster, 2009. Language - G, Sexual Content - G; Violence -G This rhyming story is an adventure through the very loud city as seen through the eyes of a young boy; everything from the “subway roaring” to “streetlights blinking”. The illustrations are colorful and full of energy. The sing-song description will excite young toddlers and is sure to be a pleaser at story-time.
ELADVISABLE. Jennifer Rodriguez - YA Librarian

Moon Rabbit by Natalie Russell

Russell, Natalie Moon Rabbit, 32 pgs. Viking Juvenile, 2009. Language - G, Sexual Content - G; Violence -G Little Rabbit loves the city. She loves the hustle and bustle; she loves her little favorite café and all the things there are to do. Even though the city is busy, Little Rabbit often wonders if she will ever find another rabbit just like her. When Little Rabbit meets Brown Rabbit she is tempted to stay in the park with her new friend, but she soon realizes that she can live in the busy city and still be friends with Brown Rabbit from the quiet park. A very sweet tale that will help children to learn that they can be true to themselves and still be friends with children that are different from them.
ELADVISABLE. Jennifer Rodriguez - YA Librarian

Zigazak! A Magical Hanukkah Night by Eric A. Kimmel

Kimmel, A Eric Zigazak! A Magical Hanukkah Night, 30 pgs. Doubleday 2001. $16.99. Language - G; Sexual Content - G; Violence - G. Two tricky devils try to ruin Hanukkah in the little town of Brisk. By saying the word, "zizgazak!" they can make dreidels sprout legs, latkes fly through the air, and candles turn into fireworks. Only the Rabbi is not afraid of their magic. He chooses to see their mischief as wonderful magic instead and even tricks the devils into giving the entire town Hanukkah gelt. The devils refuse to leave, so the Rabbi outsmarts them once again. This is a fun story to read because it teaches good life lessons like seeing the good in everything and everyone, and it also can be used to teach facts about Hanukkah. EL - ESSENTIAL. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Encore, Opera Cat! by Tess Weaver

Weaver, Tess Encore, Opera Cat!, 32 pgs. Clairion Books, 2009. $16.00. This is a sequel to Opera Cat. Alma, a simese cat is still singing her heart out, and she wants to be in the spotlight. Madame So So tries to tell Maestro about her new singer, but he was too close minded. Madame So So smuggles Alam into Switzerland where she is to perform. They end up singing a beautiful duet which receives a standing ovation, and changes opera has never been the same since! EL (K-3) - OPTIONAL. Anna Mattheus

Man on the Moon ( a day in the life of Bob) by Simon Bartram

Bartram, Simon Man on the Moon
( a day in the life of Bob), 30 pgs. Templar Book, 2004. $6.99. Language - G; Sexual Content - G; Violence -G. Bob is regular guy who works nine to five like everyone else, except for the fact that he works on the moon. He is in charge of cleaning up garbage left from human tourists, even though people blame aliens for the mess. He also puts on aerial acrobatics for the tourist spaceships. There is one thing that Bob is certain of, and that is that aliens do not exist! Or do they? EL (K-3) - ESSENTIAL. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher.

Oliver's Game by Matt Tavares

Tavares, Matt Oliver's Game, 25 pgs. Candlewick Press 2004. $6.99. Language -G; Sexual Content - G; Violence - G. Oliver Hall loves baseball and visiting his grandfather's baseball store. One day his grandfather tells him a story about how he almost played for the Chicago Cubs baseball team. He was personally invited to try out by the manager, but then Pearl Harbor was bombed and he felt that he couldn't sit at home and play baseball when there was a war to fight. He was injured serving his country and this prevented him from playing baseball when he returned. He learned that the game of baseball is more than playing on the field, it is everyone who supports it. EL - ESSENTIAL. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher.

Cool Cat by Nonny Hogrogian

Hogrogian, Nonny Cool Cat, 25 pgs. Roaring Brook Press, 2009.Language - G; Sexual Content - G; Violence - G. $17.99. Cool Cat, the only character in this story lives in a world that is void of bright colors. It is littered with garbage, and he wants to change it. With only his paintbrushes, he slowly starts to transform his barren world to one of color. He adds in beautiful colors, animals, and turn it into a paradise. This book teaches perseverance without using a single word. Elementary - OPTIONAL. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher.

Amazing Armadillos by Jennifer Guess McKerley

McKerley, Jennifer Guess Amazing Armadillos, 48 pgs. Random House, 2009. Language - G; Sexual Content -G; Violence - G. $3.99. Did you know that armadillos can jump three feet in the air and eat 40,000 ants in one meal? They like to float on logs and can hold their breath for six minutes underwater. "Armadillo" means "little armored one" in Spanish. Read this book and learn more interesting facts about Armadillos. EL (K-3) - ADVISABLE. Anna Mattheus, Elementary Teacher.

Prep Cool by Maya Gold

Gold, Maya Cinderella Cleaners: Prep Cool. 155pg. Scholastic, 2010. Content: G. Dianna is a some what normal 7th grader, whose dad owns her grandpaw’s dry cleaner company, Cinderella Cleaners. Dianna and her friend Jessica are invited to see their friend Will play the drums in his brother’s band at a prep school. The girls are so excited to get to learn the lifestyle of kids their age living such fancy lives until they get there and learn they are total BRATS!!! Dianna and Jessica meet these two blonde girls who are snoops, and the day after the dance they learn that the girls have stolen Jessica's cell phone. When a girl drops off a school uniform at the cleaners, Dianna gets it to fit her and she sneaks in to the school to find Jessica's cell phone. Will she get out without getting caught? I thought that this book was really good and it keeps you on the edge. MS- OPTIONAL. Student Adviser: MM

Bugs and Spiders (The Wonders Inside) - ESSENTIAL

Bugs and Spiders (The Wonders Inside), 89 p. Silver Dolphin, 2009. $19.95. 

Explore the world and the insides of our tiny neighbors through these gorgeous color drawings and occasional, clear over-leaf pages. This is sure to be a hit at almost any age level. I want every book in the series, personally! I can’r believe what a great resource I am getting for such a small price. 

EL, MS, HS – ESSENTIAL. Cindy, Library Teacher

Friday, February 12, 2010

Indian in the Cupboard - new covers!

Banks, Lynne Reid The Indian in the Cupboard series reprinted. $6.99. Yearling (Random). Look at the cool new pictures on the covers of these modern classics! Personally, they really go far to renew my personal interest in the series. What a great present for a young boy or girl – and great replacement for library books that have been loved just a few too many times. EL – ESSENTIAL. Cindy, Library Teacher

Classic Children's stories reprinted

Reprinted classics – Random House has reprinted four children classics through its Looking Glass Library imprint. The original covers, black line interior drawings with a hardcover. At $9.99, these might be a good addition to a personal collection or places where these classics are well-worn. E. Nesbit – Five Children and It; E. Nesbit The Book of Dragons; Howard Pyle – Twilight Land; and George MacDonald – The Princess and the Goblin.

Wish You Were Dead by Todd Strasser

Strasser, Todd Wish You Were Dead, 236 p. Egmont, 2009. $16.99. Language: PG-13 (27 swears, 0 “f”), Violence: PG, teen smoking and drinking. Want Lucy Cunningham dead? Wish granted. Maddy and Tyler were the last ones to see her alive – when they dropped her off after a drinking party. Then Adam, Courtney’s boyfriend, disappears and then Courtney, Lucy’s best friend goes missing too. All of the Queen bees and BMOC’s at Soundview High are in a sweat, wondering who might be next. Maddy is pretty sure that it might be her. I would have thought that with all of the years of experience that Strasser has had, that he would deliver a tight, fascinating read – but, alas, NO. This felt like a first time effort for a self-published novel. It didn’t even interest me on a superficial level. HS – OPTIONAL. Cindy, Library Teacher