Monday, January 30, 2017


Watch out for the Fletchers!  The eldest, Sam, is athletic and an all-around great big brother.  Jackson is hard working in school and enjoys being at the same school as Sam.  Elliot, on the other hand, decides to venture off in a different direction from his brothers and attend a school for exceptional students. Frog, the youngest Fletcher, is absolutely the sweetest youngster in his class. 

The Fletcher boys are incredibly close, even as they encounter challenges that fall out of their normal school routine.  Thankfully, they have their loving parents to help each of them get through it all.  Adventures sometimes pull families together.  But for the Fletchers, it’s the misadventures that draw them closer together.

Dana Alison Levy weaves a family tale that highlights the importance of respect and individuality.  The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher is a surprisingly fun read!
For 4th - 8th grade

Thursday, January 26, 2017


What does an astronaut do while on the job?  Follow Jenny, Chen and Kim as they demonstrate their daily tasks. A Robo-bot is also on board with them at the space station when they realize that he is broken.

Astronaut by Lucy M. George and Ando Twin wonderfully illustrates the life of astronauts through fictional characters.  The text is short, yet uses advanced vocabulary.  This book includes detailed, clear and bright drawings with accompanying text.

Great for early elementary school readers!

Monday, January 23, 2017


It’s been one year since 12-year old Cedar Lee’s father and autistic younger brother Ben both died in a car accident. Now Cedar, her mother, and youngest brother are spending the summer in the small high desert town of Iron Creek where her mother grew up. It’s a summer where everything is the same, and nothing is the same.

Cedar soon befriends a boy associated with the Summerlost Festival, Iron Creek’s distinguished Shakespearean festival, and becomes preoccupied with the decades old, unexplained death of one of its star actresses. Meanwhile, random trinkets, things that would have caught Ben’s attention, mysteriously appear on Cedar’s windowsill at night. Cedar doesn’t believe in ghosts, but what if Ben is sending her a message?

Summerlost is a middle-grade story of friendship, mystery, grief and healing. Ally Condie beautifully and heartbreakingly captures the complexity of love and guilt experienced by a sibling to a special needs child.

Share with theater lovers and fans of Gary Schmidt, Richard Peck, Cynthia Lord, and Ingrid Law.

Grades 5-8

Thursday, January 19, 2017


Two amazing picture books to explain death euphemistically and ritualistically to a child should you need to.   

Cry, Heart, But Never Break by Glenn Ringtved and illustrated by Charlotte Pardi (translated from Danish)


Dead Bird by Margaret Wise Brown and illustrated by Christian Robinson. 

For ages 4 and up.

Monday, January 16, 2017


Max Crumbly is in 8th grade and for the first time he is attending public school.  For all of his life he has been homeschooled so he had never experienced social issues such as bullying until now.  After an unfortunate encounter with the school bully, Doug “Thug” Thurston, Max gets trapped in a school locker and no one knows he is there. Worse, it's a three day weekend.  As he tries to get himself out, he soon finds out that his school is being robbed.  Does Max figure a way out and go home or should he stay and try to be the school hero?

Locker Hero, the first title in this new series is brought to us by Rachel Renee Russell, author of the popular Dork Diaries, and is a great read for students grades 4 and up. 

Thursday, January 12, 2017


Mary Had a Little Glam by Tammi Sauer and illustrations by Vanessa Vrantley-Newton is a delightful adaptation of the classic nursery rhyme, Mary Had a Little Lamb.  In this retelling, this little Mary loves to accessorize.  With her very stylish fashion, she helps her classmates add a little “glam” to their fashion. 

Children who enjoy series such as Pinkalicious and Fancy Nancy will enjoy this book.  This is a wonderful story to share with children ages three and up with its beautiful illustrations and a message for little girls to be creative.

Monday, January 09, 2017


The neighborhood cat featured in this captivating picture book leads a very busy life. He saunters from house to house on Blossom Street, answering to many different names and helping the people he meets carry out a number of miscellaneous activities: eating fresh fish at number three, bird watching at number one, still-life modeling at number eighteen, gardening at number fourteen, and swing dancing at number six, to name but a few. There's only one house that doesn't normally get a visit from the street's resident feline celebrity: number eleven, where life is much quieter. One day, when the cat strays from his much-anticipated regular rounds, the cast of diverse neighborhood characters come out in full force looking for their beloved (and, unbeknownst to them, communal) pet. Where has he gone and who does he actually belong to? 

Archie Snufflekins Oliver Valentine Cupcake Tiberius Cat, written and illustrated by Katie Harnett, is simply a delight. Preschoolers through second graders, as well as assorted cat ladies and gentlemen of all ages (and maybe even some dog people too!), will take pleasure in this charming offering, whether shared in a group setting or one on one. Perhaps, as this reviewer suspects, this sweet tale of friendship and community could even win over Grumpy Cat herself.

Thursday, January 05, 2017


Little Elliot and Mouse venture off to Coney Island and Mouse is very excited to show Little Elliot all the attractions at the amusement park.  Upon arrival, Little Elliot is overwhelmed by the rides and attractions.  Mouse tries to help his friend find rides that are more suitable for his pace.  

Will Elliot overcome his fears and try some of the rides?  Will the two friends enjoy their experience at the amusement park? 

Little Elliot Big Fun by Mike Curato is the third book in the Little Elliot series.  This book teaches us about friendship and how we can be different from one another but still enjoy each other’s company. This is also a great story to help children deal with anxiety when approaching new things.  A lovely story with beautiful illustrations makes it a great read aloud for children ages 2 and up. 

Tuesday, January 03, 2017


It happens to everyone. You wake up on the wrong side of bed. There’s no milk for your cereal. You’re hungry. It’s raining. You’re cold. Your favorite teddy is missing. And your mother gives you cherry juice with your lunch. Cherry! The official flavor of cough syrup-- yech!

The point is, it’s a Grumpy Pants kind of day, and sometimes the only thing to do is strip off those grumpy layers, count to three, and wash it all away.

Grumpy Pants by Claire Messer is a toddler-friendly story designed to send the grumps on their way. Pair it with other grumpy picture books, including Brian Won’s Hooray for Hat!, Jeremy Tankard’s Grumpy Bird, Kristine A. Lombardi's The Grumpy Pets, and Samantha Berger’s Crankenstein.

Ages 2+

Disclaimer: Grumpy Cat read this book, and she thought it was awful. (Don't listen to Grumpy Cat)