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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
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
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
Brown Girl Dreaming
In journalism school I'd get writer's block from deadlines. I would plop open Patricia Hampl's poetry to any page and no matter what, her words conjur ...more
Dec 20, 2014
Dec 19, 2014
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
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 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
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
Secrets of the Terra-Cotta Soldier
Diverse books are necessary to understanding different cultures; yet there are not oodles of choices out there. Some of my favorite multicultural book ...more
Feb 14, 2015
Feb 13, 2015
The Spy Catchers of Maple Hill
We went to Hawaii for a week and I read eight books and decided to write the reviews when I got back. Great plan except this book is a blank slate or ...more
Feb 24, 2015
Feb 23, 2015
Shadow on the Mountain
Civil disobedience is a conscious effort to disobey laws that one disagrees with in society. The protagonist, Espen, lives in Norway when the Germans ...more
Feb 12, 2015
Feb 11, 2015
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
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
Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales: Treaties, Trenches, Mud, and Blood (Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales, #4)
Nathan Hale entertained people during an "Author Klatch" at the American Library Association conference this summer. The man never took a breath. Hold ...more
Aug 21, 2014
Aug 21, 2014
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
King George: What Was His Problem?: Everything Your Schoolbooks Didn't Tell You About the American Revolution
Steve Sheinkin has evolved into such a brilliant writer of narrative nonfiction that when I read his earlier books I'm a bit let down because I am exp ...more
Nov 27, 2013
Nov 26, 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
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
Emily's Fortune
I got hooked into this story like a fish to a bait. Luella, the wealthy owner that Emily's mom works for loves order and quiet, except when she picks ...more
Jan 19, 2015
Jan 18, 2015
A Diamond in the Desert
Twelve-year-old Tetsu's life in California is uprooted when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor and he is forced to relocate to Gila River camp in Arizon ...more
Jan 16, 2015
Jan 15, 2015
Bracelet of Bones
Solveig is with her Viking father, Halfdan, in a valley in Trondheim, Norway, where he is telling her of his experience in the great the Battle of Sti ...more
Jan 22, 2015
Jan 21, 2015
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
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 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
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
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