Monthly Archives: March 2012

Tacky’s Christmas

Our library has all the Tacky the Penguin books and they are a hilarious series.  Wonderful to read-aloud, my students always enjoy story time when we read Tacky.  Tacky is a penguin who although wacky and a bit of an … Continue reading

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The Lemonade Crime

I enjoyed this middle elementary level chapter book sequel to The Lemonade War.  Each chapter was titled with a legal term related to the progression of the story line.  The main characters are 4th grade students (which is perfect for … Continue reading

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Dreams of Significant Girls

Three teenage girls from different lifestyles come together to study French at a summer school in Switzerland.  Ingrid is the wild child.  Shirin is the brain and the bookworm.  Vivien is trying to find herself.  The three girls find themselves … Continue reading

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Quillblade

In a fantasy world where humans primarily travel in airships powered by creatures called bestia, two twin slaves are sold along with a new airship to the emperor of the Shinzo land.  These twins are the ship’s bestia keepers and … Continue reading

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Rapunzel

This is a retelling of the classic Brothers Grimm fairy tale, Rapunzel.  The text of the story is geared for elementary aged students and follows the classic story closely.  The illustrations have a cartoonish feel but utilize rich colors and … Continue reading

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Miriam in the Desert

This picture book features the journey of Moses and the Israelites through the desert including God’s gift of the Ten Commandments on Mt. Sinai.   The beautiful and brightly painted illustrations bring this story alive.  The characters of the story … Continue reading

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Cool Card Tricks

This terrific magic book includes 8 easy to follow card tricks as well as an introduction so the budding magician can deliver the tricks with finesse.  The tricks are easy to learn due to the clear explanation and demonstrative photographs … Continue reading

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Young Cam Jansen and the Circus Mystery

This is a level 2 early reader (AR test at level 2.9, .5 points) with chapters for those emergent readers.  I generally like the Cam Jansen mysteries but didn’t care for this story due to characterization issues.  A main character, … Continue reading

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The Amazing Mystery Show

In another edition of the Boxcar Children, the four children have earned reputations as first-rate detectives and are in a competition with another family of kid detectives.  The other family, the Best family, have won this competition four times and … Continue reading

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Amelia’s Summer Survival Guide

This notebook-style book is two summer stories in one: Amelia’s Longest, Biggest, Most-Fights-Ever Family Reunion, and Itchy-Twitchy, Lovey-Dovey Summer at Camp Mosquito.  In the first story, Amelia, and her sister Cleo meet their father for the first time.  Amelia is … Continue reading

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Mockingbirds, The

In a school where teachers turn a blind eye to problems, it is difficult for one to make their voice heard.  Alex is a bright young pianist who is looking forward to her final project but any bright spot in … Continue reading

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Stories for a Fragile Planet

Very lovely illustrations to this book which has soul in it’s stories.  They are loosely woven around the theme of respecting our planet and appreciating the creatures who share our world.  This book is a collection of stories, with tales … Continue reading

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Biomimicry, Inventions Inspired by Nature

Beautiful science book, with a focus on the connection science has with art and inventions by humans.  How art forms have been found in nature and mimicked by people who are looking for ways to better our quality of life. … Continue reading

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Three Little Kittens

Absolutely darling, over-sized, beautiful picture book with Jerry Pinkney’s illustrations!  He’s taken another classic tale and transformed it into an enchanting visual effect.  Pencil and watercolor paintings with beautiful details–just as you would expect from Pinkney–consistent with his style.  You’ll … Continue reading

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Cahoots

A popular comic novel with a look and sense of humor similar to the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series, in that the humor is ever so slightly “off color”.   Probably best for the upper elementary grades for readers … Continue reading

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The Full Moon

In this fourth installment of The Faeries’ Promise, Alida, the faerie princess, helps the nearby villagers, thereby breaking Lord Dunraven’s law that states no contact between humans and faeries.  In order to feed his increasing army, Lord Dunraven exacts a … Continue reading

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Wishes and Wings

Wishes and Wings is book #3 of The Faeries’ Promise series, so there was some background that was necessary to understand the story.  The story revolves around Alida, a faerie princess, whose mother is the queen of all the faeries.  … Continue reading

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Jacob Wonderbar and the Cosmic Space Kapow

This book is about a boy named Jacob who was a trouble maker especially for substitute teachers.  He has a friend Dexter and Sarah.  After causing a disaster in the classroom and getting kicked out of school, his mother picked … Continue reading

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Cold Case

In this suspenseful crime novel, teenage Oz tries to prove his brother’s innocence after a dead body is discovered in the family’s restaurant freezer.  Oz learned that his father, a nuclear scientist for the U. S. government, was actually selling … Continue reading

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B is for Blue Planet: An Earth Science Alphabet

A visual delight for children to take this “abecedarian journey” through our planet’s ecosystems, geological wonders and weather phenomena. Enlarged, captivating watercolor drawings rivet your eyes, as the side bar text informs and instructs. A poem accompanies each letter to … Continue reading

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Dark Emperor

Nocturnal life in the forest is brilliantly illuminated throught poems, compelling linoleum-block print artwork, and detailed notes of the subject on each double-page spread. The poetic forms are quite varied as nine creatures are featured…snail, primrose moth, great horned owl … Continue reading

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Drop In to the Deep End: Skateboarding with the Z-Boys

Utilizing both novel text and graphic novel, this historical fiction may appeal mostly to reluctant readers. Based on the late 1970’s where, in California, a drought caused most swimming to be emptied, skateboarders honed their skills “in the deep end”. … Continue reading

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Subtracting with Sebastian Pig and Friends on a Camping Trip

This book is full of bright watercolor illustrations to compliment a story line featuring Sebastian and his friends on a camping trip.  Along the way, they discover they are missing some of their equipment, setting up subtraction problems.  The readers … Continue reading

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How it Happens at the TV Station

This book describes the operation and professionals who work at TV stations.  The text is a bit dry, although informative.  The glossary and index at the back of the book are very brief and the illustrations are ok, but not … Continue reading

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You Wouldn’t Want to be a Shakespearean Actor!

Set in the late 1590’s, this book follows Shakespearean Actors in London.  What is theater life like, for novices up to experienced actors?  What happens when the plague hits London and the show must hit the road?  These topics are … Continue reading

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