The Pirate Pig
Written by Cornelia Funke
Illustrated by Kerstin Meyer
Age Level: 7 - 10
Grade Level: 2 – 5
This is a great read! It’s an easy chapter book that’s also a pirate story! Poor Julie is thrown overboard by pirates, but she’s rescued by Stout Sam and Pip. They quickly discover Julie’s talent . . . she can sniff out treasure. Really! Of course the pirates discover they threw away a treasure-finding pig, and they are off to capture Julie, by hook or by crook. Pirates and pigs, kids will love this book!
Miss Moore Thought Otherwise: How Anne Carroll Moore Created Libraries for Children
Written by Jan Pinborough
Illustrated by Debby Atwell
Age Level: 6 - 9
Grade Level: 1 – 4
Meet Anne Carroll Moore. You probably don’t recognize her name, but if you like the children’s room at your local library, it’s because of Anne. Miss Moore came into the New York Public Library and thought otherwise. She wanted a kid-friendly place with art to see and comfy seats to curl up in. She established the first children’s room. Read her story to find out how she did it and how she changed libraries everywhere. Thanks, Miss Moore!
Now meet the real Anne Carroll Moore. She was born in 1871 and died in 1961. She worked as a children’s librarian for almost 50 years. She also wrote a book that was runner-up for the 1925 Newberry Award. She was incredible, and so are her Four Respects. I think they still apply to children and children’s literature. Here they are:
Cummins, J. (1999, July). “Moore than Meets the Eye”. School Library Journal, pp. 26-30 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anne_Carroll_Moore
Rulers of the Playground
Written and Illustrated by Joseph Kuefler
Age Level: 4 - 8
Grade Level: P – 3
If you’re a kid, you know where your happy place is . . . the playground. Kids will love this book! It has a happy playground, happy till Jonah decided to become king. Everyone bowed to their King, everyone except Lennox who decided to become Queen. The kids bowed to Lennox, except for Jonah. Their argument turned into a Battle Royale for control of the playground. Who will rule, or will their friendship drool? Read to find out if this playground will ever be happy again!
The New LiBEARian
Written by Alison Donald
Illustrated by Alex Willmore
Age Level: 4 - 7
Grade Level: P – 3
A librarian is an author’s best friend, but when the librarian goes missing before story hour, BEAR saves the day. The kids search the floor and find some paw prints that lead to a puddle of honey. That’s when they find the BEAR sitting at the librarian’s desk. BEAR opens a book and reads with real expression . . . with roars, growls and even stomps. The kids ask to hear it again. You’ll have to read the book yourself to find out what happens to the the BEAR and the librarian. Hint . . . it’s so clever!
Written by Anna Humphrey
Illustrated by Kass Reich
Age Level: 7 - 10
Grade Level: 2 - 5
I loved this book, and I think kids will too! Poor Daniel! He has to move to a new house, and he thinks it’s haunted. And Megabat! He falls asleep on a papaya and wakes up in a foreign country with broom-swatting humans. Daniel and Megabat discover they need to help each other. They bond over important things like Star Wars, juice boxes, light sabers, and a common enemy – the mean boy next door. It’s a friendship in the making, and a great new series.
The Language of Spells
Written by Garret Wehr
Illustrated by Katie Harnett
Age Level: 10 - 14
Grade Level: 5 - 9
This week’s blog was about saying goodbye to a friend, and so is this book. Its hook, the magic of being ordinary. Grisha the dragon’s super-power is seeing the ordinary, which seems so dull and unmagical. Grisha’s tested when he’s turned into a vase. He sits on a shelf and watches life pass him by first in an Austrian palace, then in a London shop during the bombing of WWII. It takes the magic of one friendship to return him to dragon-form and to Vienna. It takes the magic of another to help Grisha solve the mystery of the missing dragons of Vienna. Read this story to discover how an ordinary girl saves them by sacrificing the thing she loves most. This story is truly magical!
Riley the Retriever Wants a New Job
Written by Jill Mangel Weisfield
and Deborah Mangel
Illustrated by Beth Nabi
Age Level: 3 - 8
Grade Level: PS - 2
Riley the Retriever is on the lookout for the perfect job. She takes her search online to ‘Doogle,’ but nothing fits. Riley won’t quit till she finds her perfect match. This is a great read for kids who love dogs and want to learn more about them. Its mix of fiction and nonfiction make it a great resource for kids, parents, and teachers who want canine information on working dogs. Plus, it’s a good story too!
The King Cake Baby
Written by Keila Dawson
Illustrated by Vernon Smith
Age Level: 4 - 8
Grade Level: K - 3
If you like The Gingerbread Man, I bet you’ll like The King Cake Baby too. It’s the classic story done New Orleans’ style. From King Day, January 6th, until Fat Tuesday, people in New Orleans bake cakes with tiny babies hidden inside, but one escapes. He takes you on a tour of New Orleans that includes the Café du Mond, and he serves up slices of French culture. Don’t forget to read the back matter! It includes a simple recipe for King Cake. Bon Appetit!
The Junction of Sunshine and Lucky
Written by Holly Schindler
Age Level: 8 - 12
Grade Level: 3 - 7
I read this book 3 years ago, but I still remember it. I loved the message! The title and the cover first caught my eye, and I was curious about that junction. The main character, Auggie Jones lives in a poor neighborhood with her grandfather who’s a junk man. Her school closes, and she’s sent to a new one. That’s where she meets the school’s mean girl, Victoria. Her father is on the beautification committee, and he wants to get rid of Auggie’s neighborhood. She fights back by turning garbage into art, but Victoria and her father don’t see it. They still see junk. Read to find out how this story turns out. It has a great message about what’s trash and what’s treasure. Hint…there’s a happy ending at the junction of Sunshine and Lucky!
Written by Annemarie O’Brien
Age Level: 10 and up
Grade Level: 5 - 6
I’ve been tracking my reading since 2015. This was the 10th chapter book that I read. I’m at #99 now, but I still remember how much I loved this story. I hope you’ll check it out too.
Lara’s Gift is historical fiction, and it’s so well researched! I loved the detail that Annemarie wove into her plot. Lara is a young Russian girl who wants to become a kennel steward, but not just any steward. She wants to be the one who cares for the borzoi dogs that belong to the Russian Tsar (king). Lara has the job, until her mother has a baby boy. Nowadays that’s not a problem, but back then boys got all the great jobs. The drama increases when you discover Lara has 2 gifts…she has a special understanding for borzois, and, she has visions, something her father doesn’t understand, or approve of. Read and find out how Annemarie weaves this great story together.
PS- Annemarie got this idea from her time working in Russia. She was even given her 1st borzoi puppy. Lucky Annemarie!
PPS- I found this in my notes…I loved this book so much I had trouble stopping at the end of the chapters. I wanted to find out what was next for Lara.
Whenever I read or write, I find a comfy chair with a great view. I get my favorite drink, stretch out, and let the words take me away.