Labyrinth

Labyrinth, by Israel Keats, is a juvenile fiction book in the science fiction genre that is fast paced and action packed.

The story begins with two teens, a boy from a dysfunctional family who feels that he has nothing to live for, and a girl from a caring home, but one in comparison where the . . . → Read More: Labyrinth

The Unicorn in the Barn

 

 

 

 

Eric Harper’s grandma has been moved into a nursing home. Her home has been sold to help with expenses and Eric is having a hard time adjusting to that reality. After all, the Harper’s have owned this land for as far back as Eric can recall. They’ve loved it and . . . → Read More: The Unicorn in the Barn

Black Holes: A Space Discovery Guide

Black holes, by there very nature cannot be seen. The only information about black holes is from observing how other objects in space behave around them. This book details many of the devices that are used to collect information about black holes. It also discusses the evolution of black hole theories over time. The complexity . . . → Read More: Black Holes: A Space Discovery Guide

Esquivel! Space-age Sound Artist

I love the illustrations. I like the idea of picture book biographies, especially more multi-cultural ones. From what I read, he certainly seems to have been a ground-breaking musician, so perhaps this book will help him become more well-known. I know I don’t have a huge musical background, but even the illustrator mentions in his . . . → Read More: Esquivel! Space-age Sound Artist

Will’s Words: how William Shakespeare change the way you talk

A really approachable and informative non-fiction picture book that I think has a wide grade-range of appeal. The illustrations are cartoonish enough to be inviting, but still do a good job of providing the reader with a visual context for the time period. The text is written with a chatty voice that makes it approachable . . . → Read More: Will’s Words: how William Shakespeare change the way you talk

The Haunted Mansion #5

Even though I have not read books 1-4, this was a good read. It helped to have a synopsis on the title page.

Danny went to the mansion to help his deceased grandpa. Danny is now trapped inside the mansion and needs to get out. He achieves this by jumping out of a window into . . . → Read More: The Haunted Mansion #5

The Impossible Clue

What readers are looking for! A smart girl who is good at math and does not take guff about it from anyone!

 

Summer vacation will start any minute. Alice can hardly wait to begin her vacation. Alice plans on using vacation to prove the Goldbach’s Conjecture. Twelve year old Alice loves math! When she . . . → Read More: The Impossible Clue

The Story of the Orange Bowl

Back in the 1930s, Earnie Seiler was a tireless promoter of what was to become the Orange Bowl, one of the final major football contests of the season. Seiler enticed top teams, the Oklahoma Sooners and the Tennessee Volunteers, to face off in the first game played in Miami. The other chapters highlight noteworthy competitions . . . → Read More: The Story of the Orange Bowl

The Mystery of the Sphinx

The sphinx and the pyramids in Egypt’s Sahara Desert have intrigued people for thousands of years. Scientists, archeologists, and scholars have studied, excavated, repaired, and wondered about the creation and purpose of the sphinx. Which came first, the sphinx or the pyramids? The sphinx is carved from a single rock. How old is it? Why . . . → Read More: The Mystery of the Sphinx

Charles Drew: Distinguished Surgeon and Blood Researcher

This biography is of Dr. Charles Drew and his amazing contributions to science concerning blood. Born in 1904 in Washington DC, Drew, an African American, had more opportunities for a solid education. Because of DC’s large African American population, schools were good. He excelled in sports, was a dedicated student, and received a scholarship to . . . → Read More: Charles Drew: Distinguished Surgeon and Blood Researcher

The Oddest Superstitions of All Time

Several sports are represented in which players exhibit strange superstitions based on achieving a perfect performance. In this book, all players are male, both from team and individual sports. Tennis star Rafael Nadal has a whole routine he follows before and during the game. A football coach eats grass to “keep himself grounded”. Hockey players . . . → Read More: The Oddest Superstitions of All Time

The Last Days of the Dinosaurs

Focusing on the cretaceous period, this book starts with a brief introduction of how the land masses on our planet shifted and a descriptive timeline of each period from the Precambrian to Quaternary (now). The tone is conversational but includes a great variety of facts and details readers seek. There are many logical suppositions about . . . → Read More: The Last Days of the Dinosaurs

The Mesmerist

Jess and her mother make a living in Victorian England as fake spiritualists, ‘helping’ grieving people connect with their deceased loved ones. Jess and her mother discover that Jess can actually communicate with the dead – she is a mesmerist. Her mother contacts an old friend, Balthazar, who turns out to be rather magical himself . . . → Read More: The Mesmerist

Plastic, Ahoy!: Investigating the Great Pacific Garbage Patch

In the middle of the Pacific Ocean is a giant pile of garbage. Scientists have studied the phenomenon, and the creators of this book journeyed to witness science in action. They focus on three scientists, and show some of the methods of study. Text is broken up with plentiful photographs of things found in the . . . → Read More: Plastic, Ahoy!: Investigating the Great Pacific Garbage Patch

Keep Me In Mind

When one of two star-crossed lovers full of teen agnst run falls off of a cliff in the 1st chapter, readers of Keep Me In Mind by Jaime Reed will be anxiously ready to turn the next pages. Alternating chapters between each, Ellia Dawson and Liam McPherson tell their side of the story in dealing . . . → Read More: Keep Me In Mind

Memoirs of a Sidekick

How appropriate my fortune cookie read, “An optimist is always able to see the bright side of other people’s troubles.”

Boris Snodbuckle and his sidekick Adrian are true optimists. They are seventh grade nerds or geeks at Bendale Public School, which is a K-8 school. As you might imagine, Boris’ last name gets quite a . . . → Read More: Memoirs of a Sidekick

Room 201: The Key

Here is a mystery for your upper- grade Hi-low readers. The color illustrations are very close to graphic novel style, only page-size. Each page of text has two or three words jumping out at the reader by way of size, color, and/or style. Like in any good mystery, the reader will need to read between . . . → Read More: Room 201: The Key

The Icarus Show

The Icarus Show, by Sally Christie, is a tender and insightful examination of strategies used to cope with uncomfortable situations and how they can interfere with living a full life. Alex has devised the perfect coping strategy for his first year in secondary school: no matter what happens, do not react in any way. David, . . . → Read More: The Icarus Show

Fortune Falls

Sadie is one unlucky girl. And in a town like Fortune Falls, luck means everything. This town is loaded with superstition and magic. If you step on a crack, your mother really does break her back. And, don’t even think of breaking a mirror – you will probably die! Sadie must turn her unlucky life . . . → Read More: Fortune Falls

Willa: The Story of Willa Cather, an American Writer

Willa Cather, a great American author writing in the early 1900’s is known for writing stories about the land with strong female characters. Unlike many girls at the time, Willa was encouraged by her parents to become whoever she wanted to be. Even as a child, she chose a path different from other girls.

The . . . → Read More: Willa: The Story of Willa Cather, an American Writer

Survive an Avalanche

This book is a part of a series called Survival Zone. This book covers what is an avalanche, how they occur, and ways to avoid or stay safe during an avalanche. It includes many text features including a table of contents, diagrams, text boxes, an index, glossary and further reading suggestions. The format is straightforward . . . → Read More: Survive an Avalanche

Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake (Music Storybooks)

Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake ballet is presented as a picture book with stunning mixed media illustrations by renowned Mexican artist Gabriel Pacheco.

In addition to beautiful telling of the story, the book includes information about the composer, background about the ballet, and descriptions and definitions of both the music and ballet moves of the performance. Readers . . . → Read More: Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake (Music Storybooks)

Make me the Best Football Player

Make Me the Best Football Player is part of the Make Me the Best Athlete series which, in addition to football, also includes the sports of track and field, baseball, basketball, hockey, lacrosse, soccer, and volleyball.

This non-fiction, easy to read text highlights five positions: quarterback, running back, wide receiver, linebacker, and defensive end. Each . . . → Read More: Make me the Best Football Player

Team Awkward

Anna Huntley, Britain’s newest IT Girl, continues her zany adventure in this second installment of The IT Girl series. Anna continues to amuse and delight with her dog, DOG, her soon to be blended family, and her BFFs, Jess and Danny. The story picks up after spring break with Anna trying to prove that she . . . → Read More: Team Awkward

Saturday Night Live: Shaping TV Comedy and American Culture

Part history lesson, part biography, part social commentary, part of our lives — Saturday Night Live is an institution in American television history and author Arie Kaplan opens the doors of the who, when and what this sketch comedy show has done for American culture in the past 40+ years. After an opening chapter that . . . → Read More: Saturday Night Live: Shaping TV Comedy and American Culture