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The Kitchen House
Lavinia tells most of this story and she is a meek, gentle soul. On her way from Ireland, Lavinia is orphaned on a ship and the Captain takes her to h...more
Jun 10, 2012
Jun 10, 2012
Jim the Boy
I'm a fraud. I write children's book reviews and I'm an adult. In an ideal world children would write books for children, as well as, review those boo...more
Mar 24, 2013
Mar 24, 2013
One Came Home
You can smell and taste Timberlake's sentences like beef bourguignon drenched in a saporous burgundy wine sauce. That's a mouthful, no? I've never use...more
May 05, 2013
May 04, 2013
The Boy on the Wooden Box
Finding excellent introductory books on the Holocaust for young readers is not as easy as it sounds even with the plethora of choices. More often than...more
May 30, 2014
May 30, 2014
The Unfortunate Son
If you want to see a masterful creation of a historical setting with details galore, this book is a must. From describing how olives are harvested to...more
Sep 23, 2012
Sep 23, 2012
The Kite Fighters
Like Seesaw Girl, this book deals with choices in life. Some choices we can choose: the choice of occupation, the choice of attitude, the choice of fo...more
Feb 15, 2013
Feb 14, 2013
The Lions of Little Rock
This novel is like an exploding bottle of Mountain Dew that showers everyone with emotion, fear, friendship, and hope. Thirteen-year-old Marlee choose...more
Sep 21, 2012
Sep 20, 2012
Forge (Seeds of America, #2)
Left hanging as to what happened to Isabel and Curzon in "Chains," book one of Seeds of America, the action continues to steamroll with Curzon finding...more
May 10, 2014
May 09, 2014
Chains (Seeds of America, #1)
I never paid much attention to epigraphs in books. I liked them as much as epitaphs. Just kidding. I always have to look up "epigraphs" because the de...more
Jan 05, 2014
Jan 04, 2014
Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales: One Dead Spy
The first read aloud I did with a graphic novel left me baffled after a few pages. I sputtered in front of the class, "Huh? That text didn't make any...more
Aug 11, 2013
Aug 11, 2013
Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales: Big Bad Ironclad!
Book two continues the story of Nathan Hale who is still trying to avoid the noose by telling stories from the future in this hilarious graphic novel...more
Aug 12, 2013
Aug 12, 2013
The Best Bad Luck I Ever Had
I read this book last week and already can't remember the plot that well. I liked the book but obviously it was a forgettable. The story was entertain...more
Oct 17, 2013
Oct 16, 2013
Moon Over Manifest
My best friend and I had sleepovers where we would sneak out of the house in the middle of the night. My friend got hung up on the windowsill with her...more
Dec 14, 2010
Feb 13, 2012
The Great Trouble: A Mystery of London, the Blue Death, and a Boy Called Eel
Deborah Hopkinson knows how to pass on interesting historical facts. While I've read her nonfiction books, this is the first fiction book of hers that...more
Nov 12, 2013
Nov 12, 2013
West of the Moon
A clever mix of 19th century immigration, folktales, and folklore makes this a fascinating read. Astri, a Norwegian girl, has been sold by her aunt to...more
Jul 24, 2014
Jul 24, 2014
The House on Mango Street
Don't expect a linear narrative that moves from one scene to the next in this story. Don't expect much dialogue. Instead, revel in a series of forty-s...more
Dec 11, 2013
Dec 10, 2013
I started twiddling out reviews as a class assignment two years ago thinking it would help me remember novels when book-talking with students. Lo and...more
May 2013
Apr 30, 2013
No Crystal Stair: A Documentary Novel of the Life and Work of Lewis Michaux, Harlem Bookseller
This interesting twine of factual and fictional material brings to life the charismatic bookseller Lewis Michaux who pushed for education and literacy...more
Nov 19, 2012
Nov 17, 2012
The Case of the Deadly Desperados (The P.K Pinkerton Mysteries, #1)
Giddyup! A western/detective story for kids with nonstop action, great characters, and nice plot twists. Pull out your imaginary pistols and enjoy thi...more
Nov 25, 2012
Nov 23, 2012
Last spring, I accidentally tripped over a Goodreads Newbery 2013 prediction list. This small gem of a list has had me blazing through many great nove...more
Nov 16, 2012
Nov 15, 2012
Written in Stone
The van ride was abuzz with students flipping back and forth between a collage of languages: English, Chinese, French, Singlish. Speaking in multiple...more
Jan 14, 2014
Jan 13, 2014
Franny is stuck in the middle like the filling of an oreo cookie. Her older sister is gorgeous. Her younger brother is extremely kind. Franny’s dubbed...more
Dec 17, 2010
Feb 13, 2012
Minneapolis in the Twentieth Century: The Growth of an American City
I prefer narrative nonfiction because the characters and setting come alive versus a straight forward presentation of facts that can at times be borin...more
Jul 24, 2013
Jul 24, 2013
Ninth Ward
Lanesha watched from the porch as the paper bag spun wildly across the street like tumbleweed. New Orleans was a ghost town with people fleeing from H...more
Dec 11, 2010
Feb 13, 2012
Cartwheel (Double Eagle #2)
I tried collecting Bicentennial coins as a sixth-grader for a few months, but was hungry for a Peanut Buster Parfait at Dairy Queen. Goodbye coin coll...more
May 18, 2014
May 18, 2014
Mister Orange
Growing up I couldn't understand my dad's insistence that the walls of our house be white. Now I realize that as an architect he was influenced by the...more
Apr 19, 2014
Apr 19, 2014
Navigating Early
Clare Vanderpool knows how to craft a satisfying story. Early and Jack become unlikely friends when Jack is sent from Kansas to Maine. Early is a stra...more
Apr 28, 2013
Apr 27, 2013
Lunch-Box Dream
There's no arguing that Tony Abbott has beautiful writing. He can take a moment and stretch it into a melodramatic and moving sequence of images. His...more
Apr 11, 2012
Apr 10, 2012
Rose Under Fire (Code Name Verity, #2)
"Code Name Verity" lovers will like this book that is similar with its Holocaust setting. I find that after years of reading books on the Holocaust, I...more
Jan 2014
Jan 01, 2014
The Seeing Stick
This is a terrific read aloud. Students love how the color on the illustrations unfolds mirroring the blind girl's attempt to "see" with her fingers....more
May 16, 2012
May 15, 2012
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