Wednesday, February 27, 2013


Katherine Paterson, author of well-known books like Bridge to Terabithia and Jacob Have I Loved, has stepped into the world of English fairy tales with her new book THE FLINT HEART. Actually, the story itself is based on a book from over 100 years ago by someone named Eden Phillpott. This book starts in the time of "Early Man" (a long, long, LONG time ago) and ends up in what seems to be present day. It does take place in Dartmoor, England and it involves fairies and "jacky toads" and badgers and "Zagabogs". Things you've never heard of, I'm sure, but you'll be glad to know them once you read about them. Oh, and you'll absolutely love Charles and Unity who save the day from the evil flint heart that ruins everyone's lives! You may want a dictionary nearby because there's a lot of new words to learn...for grades 4-8.


Monday, February 25, 2013


What would you do if you were asked to leave the comforts of home?  Would you  refuse?  A young, gifted seamstress accepts such an offer with the hope to find work in the city.  During her travels, she is captured by dragons and her life changes from a simple country girl to the Heroine of Feravel.  Jessica Day George weaves a humourous and dramatic tale of princes, dragons, and an unforgettable heroine in Dragon Slippers.  A must read! 

For 4th grade and up.

Friday, February 22, 2013


Much like many stories today, Darwen is from England and both his parents are dead. Not to worry, they just died in a car accident - nothing to do with Voldemort.

So Darwen's moved to the U.S. to live with his Aunt Honoria. He's not very happy about it, but at least he has a distraction one day when he's at the mall - a strange bird! He follows the bird into an even stranger shop filled with mirrors. Well, it isn't long for this chance meeting to result in a crazy adventure, one that takes Darwen to another world just by stepping through a mirror! Along the way, Darwen picks up some unlikely friends AND enemies. Words like scrobblers, dellfeys and flittercrakes will all make sense once you read this book. You'll really enjoy DARWEN ARKWRIGHT AND THE PEREGRINE PACT by A.J. Hartley!

For grades 5 and up.


Wednesday, February 20, 2013


Omakayas lives on an island in Lake Superior in 1850 as a member of the Ojibwe tribe.  Her life is filled with pesky little brothers, loud-mouth cousins, and a grandmother who wants to nurture the healer in Omakayas.  Her older sister teaches her the chimookomanag alphabet – a strange, written language that she knows will help her in her future.  A future that is quickly changing from the life she imagined it would be.  One day, a group of refugees arrive on Omakayas’ island.  This group had been pushed out of their homes by the chimookomanag, or white people, and many of their family members died or were separated along the way.  This is the day that Omakayas realizes her life and the lives of her family will change and that Lake Superior may not be the place she calls home for much longer.

Join Omakayas and her family as she struggles to lead a normal life under an unknown threat in The Game of Silence, the sequel to The Birchbark House by Louise Erdrich.  Children in grades four and five who enjoy historical fiction and The Little House books will enjoy this alternate and often unhighlighted part of history. 

For readers in 5th -7th grades.  

Friday, February 15, 2013



Wednesday, February 13, 2013


A review by Mr. B. from the Grandview Branch:  

It’s all about doing the right thing. It’s all about finding yourself. It’s really all about finding yourself by doing the right thing for your friend. In this role-model series title, Owen Foote, Soccer Star, Stephanie Greene shows young readers that doing what’s right can be tough but satisfying.

Second grader Owen Foote has been playing soccer for several years, but his best friend, Joseph, is new to the sport; naturally awkward; inexperienced; unsure of himself; and only playing to please Owen. Owen, in turn, has promised to protect and mentor best friend Joseph. When Coach separates the team by skills and plans to play just the best players, Owen has to make some tough choices and a very difficult phone call.

Reading level: 3-4
Age: 6-8

Monday, February 11, 2013


Logan was caught playing chase in the library and for his PUNishment, everything he says is a play on words. 
In order to reverse the curse must go on a quest for special words, such as find seven palindromes, within a certain amount of time, otherwise, he will speak in puns forever.  

Fans of David Lubar's over the top silliness will love this fast read, Punished!.   For beginning chapter book readers in grades 3-4.  

Friday, February 08, 2013


A review by Theresa from the Children's Room: 

“I am Ivan. I am a gorilla. It’s not as easy as it looks.” So begins Katherine Applegate’s THE ONE AND ONLY IVAN this year’s winner of the Newbery Medal for excellence in children’s literature. Ivan has been the main attraction at the Exit 8 for 27 years. For the most part he has been comfortable with his TV, friends Stella the elephant, Bob the dog and his human friend Julia the child of one of the janitors at the mall. Life in a cage is his reality as freedom and the lush green of the jungle are simply dusty memories. His days spent with friends and painting his pictures is not so bad. But all that changes when a new baby elephant, Ruby, joins the troop and his friend Stella gets sick, causing him to realize what prisons their cages are. Wanting to help Ruby avoid Stella’s fate, Ivan promises to save her in this story inspired by that of a gorilla in similar circumstances who was ultimately adopted by Zoo Atlanta. 

A lovely though bittersweet tale of friendship and loyalty that is good for readers in grades 5-8.

Wednesday, February 06, 2013


Charlie has many creative ideas and considers himself an inventor. When his most awesome invention, the Zinger Winger gets out of control, Charlie finds himself in a sticky situation, especially with the school's lunch lady. Patricia Reilly Giff writes an adventurous and humorous school story. A must read for invention fans! Take a look at the other titles in the Zigzag Kids series.  

Join the Chapter Book Chat at Central and Casa Verdugo Libraries. We'll read the book together at the first meeting and then discuss it at the second meeting. Best for 3rd thru 5th grade. Check our Family Events or visit for dates and times.`

Monday, February 04, 2013


The Montrose branch library hosted a stuffed animal sleepover on January 26th.  Children dropped off their favorite stuffed animals at the library and returned the following week to see pictures of the adventures their friend had while the library was closed. They were amazed to see pictures of their stuffed animals checking out books, hiding in the shelves, using computers, and even taking a field trip to Andersen’s Pet Store.

Toys (especially stuffed animals) are an important part of childhood. They inspire imagination, encourage creativity, and create memories. It’s not uncommon for children to come up with personalities for their stuffed animals and imagine what kind of adventures they must have when we are not watching.

In Hooray for Harry, written and illustrated by Kim Lewis, three stuffed animals have quite an adventure while their owner is not around. Wanting to take a nap, Harry the elephant, is distraught to discover that his favorite blanket is missing! Recruiting help from fellow stuffed animals, Ted the teddy bear and Lulu the lamb, they set off into the yard while retracing their steps from a very active afternoon. Will the blanket ever turn up so Harry can take his much needed nap?

Sometimes disaster can befall our beloved stuffed animals, as we see in Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale written and illustrated by Mo Willems. A routine trip to the Laundromat for Trixie and her stuffed rabbit quickly turns perilous when Knuffle Bunny is left behind. Readers will quickly figure out what is about to happen to Knuffle Bunny as the illustrations reveal Knuffle Bunny peeking out from the laundry basket as clothes are loaded into the washing machine and later peering out from behind the machine’s glass window. Poor Trixie quickly realizes her friend has been left behind, but like any frustrated pre-verbal toddler, can’t seem to make her daddy understand what has happened. Will Trixie and Knuffle Bunny ever be reunited?

What Does My Teddy Bear Do All Day?,  written by Bruno Hachler and illustrated by Birte Muller, follows a little girl who is determined to see her teddy bear’s antics for herself. She believes that by staying home for the day and spying on her bear, she will catch him in the act of jumping on her bed, painting pictures, dancing to the radio, or whatever it is that our stuffed animals do during their unobserved hours. She’s so focused on the teddy bear that she fails to notice what her other toys are getting up to behind her back. Just when it seems that the teddy bear is going to sit very still all day, something happens when the little girl’s back is turned while retrieving a jar of honey…

Ages 3 and up; Great for storytimes!

Friday, February 01, 2013


It is Valentine’s Day and Jasper does not have a gift for his lovely wife, Lily.  He visits his friends in hopes of finding the perfect gift.  Each of his friends has prepared a gift that is unique to their significant other.  His frog friend Miriam prepared chocolate-covered flies for her husband.  While Teagon wanted to prepare a rabbit stew for his vixen, which required an actual rabbit.  Will Jasper make it home safely to his Valentine with a special gift?  Or will he become an ingredient in fox’s Valentine’s day gift?

Snowy Valentine by David Petersen is a delightful story with beautiful illustrations.  It is a great read-a-loud for Valentine’s Day.  For grades kindergarten and up.