Thursday, January 31, 2008


Jean is the name, not Jinx.

Jean moved thousands of miles to get away from her reputation as a "jinx" and leave her troubles behind in Iowa, but trouble keeps on finding her. She thought she could start with a clean slate by moving in with her aunt and uncle in New York City, but cousin Tory is convinced that the two of them could be powerful witches just like their ancestor. Jean knows too well what would happen if you play with magic and she wasn't about to go there again.

For 6th grade and up.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008


Art, photography, courage, discrimination, civil movement, beauty, family bonding and much more will be found in this thin book that is about the world famous artist Gordon Parks. It is amazing what photography can teach us about so many things that are at times hard to explain in words. I guess the saying that ' a picture is worth a thousand words" will be perfect for this artist who chose to express his views on the state of the world through photos. His work ranged from one extreme to another. He shot the glamorous world of the Parisian fashion world with the same passion as he photographed the gangs of Harlem.

His artistic passion motivated him to also write books, paint and make movies as well. One passion led to another and he became without an excuse a wold famous artist. GORDON PARKS: NO EXCUSES by ANN PARR and the pictures by GORDON PARKS is available for you to check out.

For grades 3-5.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


It's time for our annual BOOKMARK CONTEST, so come one come all to your local Glendale Public Library and design a bookmark with the theme - CATCH THE READING BUG!

From January 28th through February 10th, design a bookmark at your local branch library and enter to win. You can be 5-years-old or 55-years-old; our only rule is that the actual drawing of the bookmark must be done in the library, at either Central or one of the Branches.

Submissions will be divided into age groups and given to a panel of judges. All winners will be presented with a certificate and copies of their winning bookmark at an award ceremony in April. The winning bookmarks are also distributed throughout the Glendale Public Library System, so make sure yours is in the running!

Sunday, January 27, 2008


Well, just imagine how embarassed you'd be if your mom were a pirate! wants to go to school and learn how to read and make new friends, but he lives in a different time dimension and his mother is not cookie baking mini-van driving kind. He must keep everyone from finding out his true identity, until one day, when he can't keep his worlds apart any longer and it's a matter of life and death.

My Mom the Pirate by Jackie French is short, futuristic, historical, pirate, school action pack for readers in 2nd-4th grade.

Thursday, January 24, 2008


With the recent movie version of this classic tale, it's always nice to read where a story comes from. Beowulf is a brave hero who travels to Denmark to help the King. An evil monster named Grendel has been eating all the king's men, and no one has been able to kill the slimy creature. But Beowulf uses some tricky maneuvers and bloody mayhem to save the day. Beowulf is more than 2000 years old, and was passed down from generation to generation of European ancestors. There are many different versions of the story, but BEOWULF, A HERO'S TALE RETOLD by James Rumford tries to tell the story in a modern equivalent of the Old Ango-Saxon English of it's origin. 3rd grade and up.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008


Charlie gently explains to Lola why there can't be snow all the time, but the specialness and magic is in it's appearance and disappearance. Another lovely sibling story by Lauren Child, Snow is My Favorite and My Best.

This title is a good one to share with a preschool age child and older.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


Get lost in this really cool book that will tell you all that you need and want to know about the many different monsters. The book is full of pictures and information which will be helpful to you when you are in need of recognizing or characterizing the many different monsters that you will encounter in you life:) Of course the book is shelved in the fiction section of the library and I promise you will get a big kick out of it. You will find out things such as their Latin name, habitat, diet, life cycle and many more. It will be like doing an animal report except this time it will be one thousand times better and more fun. A Field Guide to Monsters: Googly-Eyed Wart Floppers, Shadow-Casters, Toe Eaters, and Other Creatures by JOHAN OLANDER will be a monstrous hit for you.

For grades 4 and older.


"How does a book-loving, cookie-baking rat named Bob save his tail from being gobbled by twi hungry cats? By telling them fairy tales about his family, of course!"

Scheherazade like story but in animal form. How to Save Your Tail by Mary Hanson is a perfect silly beginning chapter book for animal loving readers in 2nd - 4th.

Friday, January 18, 2008


Black, white and red are supposedly the first colors that babies can tell apart from each other. Perhaps this is why THE TERRIBLE HODAG and the ANIMAL CATCHERS, written by Caroline Arnold, and illustrated by John Sandford, is so eye-catching. The book is about a monster living in a forest, and some bad guys try to capture it. Luckily, the lumberjacks working in the forest help protect the Hodag from being caught. Each drawing is in pen-and-ink, and there are so many lines and shapes, you can imagine how long it took Mr. Sandford to do each page. But what's really neat is the story has words in red ink that pop off the page as much as the illustrations do. It's always nice when the pictures are as good as the story, just like this book. Ages 7 and up.

Thursday, January 17, 2008


Becca thinks that she has "messed up" big time...But it is not easy to have a crazy mad scientist mother, a wacky father and two cross brothers and still not mess up. She feels trapped in her own house and has really hard time to adapt to her new neighborhood. She is in desperate need to make friends, however on top of all the craziness in her family, she is also home schooled. So you can imagine the difficulty of first finding friends and second who won't judge you because your parents mutter things that are not relevant to reality among other things.

She befriends her chickens hoping that they will be good listeners and that they will not judge her on her many unconventional situations. Becca is a very smart, a bit too reflective and very self-aware which make things worse for her. Here is a really cute, funny, insightful and fun story that will put a smile on your face while your reading it and long after you finish reading it. Consider reading Chicken Friend by Nicola Morgan.

For grades five and older.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


An unusually fun mystery involving a thieving pet ferret, murder and mayhem. Minerva, a seventh grader, is electrocuted while strapped to her brother's latest art exhibit. Interestingly, she becomes bolder and sharper as she delves into solving the mystery behind her cousin Jordan's arrest.

Minerva Clark Gets a Clue by Karen Karbo is the first in a mystery series of a gutsy girl detective .

For 6th-8th graders who also enjoy the Sammy Keyes series.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008


It's not all fun and games. Junior high, middle school - whatever you call it - is about survival. STUCK IN THE MIDDLE, compiled by illustrator Ariel Schrag, is a collection of junior high experiences from different animators and illustrators. There's close to twenty stories, and I'd be willing to bet everyone can relate to at least two, if not more. It doesn't paint the prettiest picture of the "tween" years, but it shows a glimmer of hope in each that despite what happens, you make it out alive. For 6th grade and up ONLY.

Saturday, January 12, 2008


For those who enjoy folktales from across world then you’ll definitely enjoy this Cuban folktale, “Martina the Beautiful Cockroach”. Martina Josefina Catalina Cucaracha was a beautiful 21 day old cockroach and believe it or not, she was ready to give her leg in marriage. As the news spread throughout the city, Martina’s abuela taught her the coffee test so that she would be able to choose a good husband. Martina soon realized that taking advice from her grandmother was a wise decision.

Retold by Carmen Agra Deedy

For grades K and up!!!

Friday, January 11, 2008


Meg and Edward are twins that don't get along at all. They are in constant fighting mood and one is terribly embarrassed of the other. Meg is smart, funny and full of wit whereas Edward is an underachiever who has no problem for being just that. Meg does not want anyone at school to know that they are in anyway related to one another. However, unexpectedly Meg gets tricked by her brother in believing that he is a rock singer who is going to be at her party. Knowing all her sister’s concerns Edward begins to think of all the different pranks that he can pull on her sister. This is a really fun story to read about sibling rivalry and it is written in an alternating narratives so you will be able to literally read about each side.

Mind this book and read it. NEVER MIND! by AVI and RACHEL VAIL.

For grades fifth and up.

Thursday, January 10, 2008


The wonderful photographs in this book, Remembering Manzanar: Life in a Japanese Relocation Camp, capture and illustrate what life was like for Japanese immigrants and Japanese-Americans who were uprooted and forced into a life of uncertainty and fear during their time in Manazanar. Many of these photos are from the National Archives and the Library of Congress taken by professional photographers hired by the U.S. government to document the evacatuations and camps.

This is a small yet heartfelt book commemorating life at the Manzanar Relocation Camp in Central California by Michael L. Cooper.

For readers in 4th grade and up.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008


That's right. Fear created singing and transportation and the handshake. Don't believe it? Then you need to read THE 2000 YEAR OLD MAN GOES TO SCHOOL by Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner. This is one of the funniest books you will read in your young life! A 2000 year old man makes a visit to a classroom near you, and tells the kids all about his life, and the life of others he's met throughout the years like Shakespeare and Einstein. And words started because of onomatopoeia: the word "egg" comes from the noise a chicken makes while laying it - "eeeeeehhhhhhgg"! There are many funny things that made the world what it is today, and you will laugh at every one! Second grade to adult!

Tuesday, January 08, 2008


Abby thought there must be a list somewhere telling her what to believe in order to be Catholic. At first she just wanted to piss off her parents, and going to catechism classes and mass on Sundays seemed the easiest way to anger them. She knew she didn't really believe. She couldn't wholly believe. She didn't understand how to believe. What's there to believe in? God? Sure. But believe in Jesus? Well, that would take a leap of faith.

Leap of Faith by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley is a thoughful story of a young girl searching for a place to belong and someone to believe in her. For middle schoolers and up.

Saturday, January 05, 2008


The story takes place in the pre-civil rights movement in the south. As two parent-and-child pairs fish alongside a river that is divided into two sections, one side for the whites and the other side for the blacks . The two families fish together never speaking a word to one another. And as one event proceed to another, friendship develops between the two children. You probably have read countless stories about this subject, but there is something really special about the way this story is written. The expressive images with very warm colors have definitely given the book a more comforting appeal. It is a sweet story about the power of communication and friendship. FISHING DAY by ANDREA DAVIS PINKNEY and the illustrations are by SHANE W. EVANS can be enjoyed here at the library or you can check it out.

For Preschool to third grade.

Friday, January 04, 2008


You're adopted? Your family is Italian? You don't look Italian.

When a new Korean family moves into the neighborhood it gets Joseph thinking about his Korean birth mother. At thirteen he's starting to question his identity and chafing at his father's idea of traditions - somehow they don't feel like his traditions. Joseph begins a search for his birth mother so he won't feel like a "fake Korean" or any other kind of fake.

Kimchi and Calamari by Rose Kent is a coming of age story about an adopted boy's search for his identity.

For 6th-8th graders.