Wednesday, February 29, 2012


From Jennifer, Children's Librarian at the Montrose Branch Library

Close to Famous by Joan Bauer 

If you think cupcakes are fluff, you’re wrong. Baking can get you through hard times. That’s what Foster McFee learns from her Food Network idol, Sonny Kroll. Foster’s life hasn’t been easy. After losing her dad, Foster’s mom dates an abusive Elvis impersonator. One day, they pack the car and move abruptly. Their only hope being – to start over.

Life is different in Culpepper, where they settle. But when things are tough, Foster bakes. Soon, her baking skills gain notoriety and she’s getting cupcake orders from a local cafĂ©. With the help of new friends, including a former movie star, Foster blossoms. She faces her troubles, one cupcake at a time. And by the end, inadvertently, you might have faced yours.

A funny, realistic, and touching read. For grades 5-8.

Monday, February 27, 2012


Hurricane Katrina just seems like a bad dream for those of us who saw it on the news. But Saint Louis Armstrong Beach was IN THE HURRICANE! It's all because his dog Shadow won't show up when the town is being evacuated. Saint's a good boy, who always does what he's told, but he loves that dog more than anything (except maybe his neighbor Mona Lisa). Saint loves the dog so much that before the hurricane, he goes down to the French Quarter with his clarinet to play music for money. Music he spends on a collar, leash and food for Shadow. But sometimes a leash just can't keep a dog from doing what a dog does. SAINT LOUIS ARMSTRONG BEACH by Brenda Woods is a good, quick read that factors in all the culture and excitement of New Orleans, and the tragic events of Hurricane Katrina. For grades 4 and up.

Friday, February 24, 2012


From Children's Librarian, Vivian at the Casa Verdugo Branch:

Snake and Lizard by Joy Cowley

In this adventure, Snake and Lizard share a Help and Helper business.  Word spreads that this unlikely pair achieve their success by helping creatures of all kinds, and it really doesn’t matter what the situation may be.  They do have their share of bickering but in the end they try to understand each others point of view.  This is a humorous tale with some surprises.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


This is a delightful story about Beatrice, a nine-year-old girl who never makes mistakes.

Beatrice is famous in her town, though most people do not know of her real name. She is known simply as “The Girl Who Never Makes Mistakes” and she is proud to be called by that nickname. She is always very careful on everything she does. It is, as she doesn’t know how to make a mistake.

She never forgets her math homework, never wears mismatched socks, and she always wins the yearly talent show at school. In fact, she has won the talent show for three years in a row with her juggling act, and she feels quite confident about this year.
However, one day participating in a talent show she makes her first mistake ever and it is in front of many people. She then realizes it is okay to make a mistake and laughs at it.
Great book for kids all ages. This story tells children that mistake happens. That not only making a mistake is not the end of the world, but also are part of growing up.

Written by Mark Pett and Gary Rubinstein , illustrated by Mark Pett.

Friday, February 17, 2012


All the Glendale Libraries will be closed in observance of the President's Day holiday from Saturday February 18 through Monday February 20. Regular hours will resume on Tuesday, February 21.


From former Children's Librarian now manager of the Casa Verdugo and Grandview Branch Librarian, Katherine:

Skilley is a street-wise tom cat looking for a ready meal and a warm bed.  When he hears Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese pub is overrun with mice, he knows he’s found his home.  An unlikely partnership gives him plenty of food and a good reputation with the pub’s owner and customers, many of them notable 19th century British authors.  It’s the perfect life until Pinch, a vicious tom cat, also comes to live at Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese.  The Cheshire Cheese Cat; a Dickens of a Tale by Carmen Agra Deedy and Randall Wright , though filled with secrets and revenge, is a heartwarming tale of strength in numbers and friendship overcoming adversity.  Barry Moser’s black and white illustrations are a perfect companion to this wonderful story.
For grades 4 and up.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012


This year is going to be different. Linc has decided that going to public school instead of being homeschooled will be an exciting change, in a normal kind of way. He will not tell people that he lives next to a cemetery, or that his mother is a cemetery expert, or that he spends most of his free time there or that his close friend is the groundskeeper. His parents had been taking him to cemeteries since he was small. When his father died suddenly, it's just him and his mom. His mom has an unusual job and dresses oddly and for now, he just wants to be a normal middle school kid.

His fantasy plan goes bust when the teacher announces that the big project of the year will be to research one grave and write a historical report about the person. Linc picks a notorious grave to research and discovers interesting facts about his own family.

Here Lies Linc by Delia Ray is a perfect little odd book about an oddball kid. For readers in 6th-8th grade.

Monday, February 13, 2012


AN ELEPHANT IN THE GARDEN by Michael Morpurgo sounds like a picture book for young children. In fact, it is a story that takes place in World War II Germany about a mother and her two children. the mother works at the local zoo in Dresden, and everyone is worried about what will happen to the animals if the city is bombed. So, the mother brings the elephant home from work every day. The children become great friends with the elephant, and the story follows them through dangerous and suspenseful situations. All with an elephant by their side. For grades 4 and up.

Friday, February 10, 2012


The boy in this book is different than any of the other kids in the neighborhood. Compared to the white kids, his skin is darker, his hair too curly, his nose is wider, and his teeth shine brighter. He tells his mother he wishes he could be more like everyone else. His mother helps him, telling him how beautiful he really is. She works with her son to see the value he has as a human being and teaches him how to embrace his African-American features.
She gives him a t-shirt that says “Chocolate me!” and he starts taking pride in his beautiful features that makes him so special. Beautiful funny illustrations. This book focus in self-acceptance and self-love and also help to remind us that each one of us is special exactly as we are. Recommended for parents to answer many questions about skin color, race or culture. Ages 6 and older. Written by Taye Diggs, illustrated by Shane W. Evans.

Wednesday, February 08, 2012


From Children's Librarian, Vivian at the Casa Verdugo Branch:

Snowy Valentine by David Petersen
Jasper is in search of the best Valentine’s Day gift for his wife.  He walks through the forest and stops to visit the other animal neighbors for ideas.  Although he encounters a near fatal situation, he goes home with the best gift of all.  A lovely picture book that shows that thoughts and actions are better than any object in hand.

Tuesday, February 07, 2012


From Mr. B. at the Grandview Branch:

Outlaw by Stephen Davies

Fifteen year old Jake Knight tells his sister Kas that “Adventurers never cry.” Jake has reasons enough to think about it, though. Suspended from his English boarding school for breaking into a prison while playing a GEOCACHE game, Jake finds himself in Africa, with his sister and Ambassador father. While at a State dinner, Jake and Kas are kidnapped by local terrorist Yakuuba Sor who orders them killed after taking Jake’s cell phone. When someone claiming to be Sor rescues them, the adventure doubles. This gripping adventure is told with gusto and humor and is ripe for a Hollywood adaption.

Friday, February 03, 2012


The annual bookmark contest ends on Saturday, February 5 so there is still time for you to come into any of the Glendale Libraries and create a bookmark for this year's Summer Reading Program theme "Dream Big Read!" Three winners will be chosen to have their entries printed in color and used at all of the Libraries in Glendale. If you are between the ages of 1 though 14 you are eligible to participate. The Library will supply crayons, markers, pens and pencils for you to create an award winning entry. Hurry to you nearest Library and channel your inner artist, who knows you just might win.

Wednesday, February 01, 2012


From Vivian, the Children's Librarian at the Casa Branch:

Hugs from Pearl by Paul Schmid

Pearl possesses such sweet qualities—she plays fair, she likes to share, and she loves to give hugs.  Her classmates like to receive her hugs but they can be a touch painful due to her quills.  Pearl is downhearted when she learns that her friends were injured upon contact, so she takes a proactive approach and finds a way to make things better for her and for those who can’t resist her hugs.  This story is great to share at home or during a storytime!