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Big Summer Read

Summer Reading Guide 2016

summer

 

String up the hammock, it’s time for a summer full of reading! You’ll find books about science and nature (from the ocean depths to the moon), picture book biographies, kid detectives (solve one mystery using coding!), ABCs, poetry, books built on wordplay, audio books, and much more. The age-leveled lists are ready to print and take to your local library or bookstore.

 

 

 

For 0-3 year olds

Baby Animals

By: Xavier Deneux
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

Small hands can trace shapes of young animals while discovering other tidbits about them. Simple, bright forms on sturdy pages with related words make this an engaging, multisensory experience.  Also in the series, similarly presented and equally appealing, is Homes.

Cars Go

By: Steve Light
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

Watch the bright hot rod “brrrroommm” and the taxi “skreeeek!” across the elongated pages of this sturdy board book.  The lively sounds present an animated cacophony of vehicles that go! 

Crocopotamus

By: Mary Murphy
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

What do you get when a crocodile is crossed with a hippopotamus?  A crocopotamus, of course!  Split images on sturdy pages encourage the creation of new and imaginative creatures.

Look! Look!

By: Peter Linenthal
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

Familiar things easily found are presented in a small size using high contrast pictures to engage the youngest child.  Illustrations are stylized but recognizable (e.g., sun, moon) in black, white, and a touch of red.

Mighty Colors

By: Marvel Press
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

Superheroes in brightly colored uniforms are used to introduce young children to colors.  The green Hulk wears “purple pants” while Captain America sports “white stars.” 

My House

By: Byron Barton
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

A satisfied cat presents both the inside and outside of its house as well as a human companion. The author/illustrator uses his signature flat, bright illustrations and straightforward language.   

Numbers

By: Judith Nouvion
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

Crisp color photographs of living creatures not only encourages counting from 1 to 10 but introduces a range of animals. Find a similar use of photographs in Colors, another title in the series.

Stream Train Dream Train 1-2-3

By: Sherri Duskey Rinker
Illustrated by: Tom Lichtenheld
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

Join the train as it begins its rhythmic, rhyming counting expedition. It starts with one engine and a happy bear and ending with the caboose with 10 windows and a “goodnight!” wish. Colors are presented in the same format in Steam Train, Dream Train Colors.

The Mixed-Up Truck

By: Stephen Savage
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

A helpful but slightly confused cement truck mixes a cake and icing before blending cement and finally helping the other trucks clean up.  Bold forms and bright colors add humor to the gentle tale.

There Was an Old Lady Who Lived in a Shoe

By: Jane Cabrera
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

Meet a grand old woman who lives in a shoe with lots and lots of children. She also makes stew for the diverse cast of kids (and animals), mends their clothes, and fixes broken furniture! A well-known rhyme becomes new again in bright illustration and fresh verse.

Touch and Explore the Ocean

By: Nathalie Choux
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

Look at some of the amazing animals found near or in the ocean in colorful, sometimes sparkly illustration. Lift the flap; touch the texture to find out a bit more about them in this sturdy, appealing, and informative, surprisingly sophisticated book.

For 3-6 Year Olds

Animal Talk: Mexican Folk Art Animal Sounds in English and Spanish

By: Cynthia Weill
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Animals sound different in other languages just like people do! Here, handsome folk art presents similar but distinguishable folk creations of familiar animals and what they sound like in English and in Spanish on opposing pages. Readers are asked “can you repeat the sound?”

City Shapes

By: Diana Murray
Illustrated by: Bryan Collier
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Join a young girl as she travels around her city noticing different shapes on buses, kites, and more. Collage and paint illustrations and a lyrical text create a memorable journey while encouraging close observation.

Cricket Song

By: Anne Hunter
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Finding Wild

By: Megan Lloyd
Illustrated by: Abigail Halpin
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

What is wild? Can it be found only outside of the city or does the city hold a bit of natural wild?  Lush illustrations and suggestive language raise questions about what wild really is and where it can be found. 

Fish

By: Liam Francis Walsh
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

A boy and his dog go fishing on a boat and catch a large red F. After a great deal of struggle, the pair catches other letters and hurry back to shore for a surprising FINISH. The limited palette of the cartoon illustrations effectively accentuates the boy’s heroic efforts and satisfying end.

Flora and the Peacocks

By: Molly Idle
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Though Flora has danced with a flamingo (Flora & the Flamingo) and even a penguin (Flora & the Penguin), this is her first dance with 2 handsome peacocks with huge tails.  How they manage their performance and develop a friendship is revealed in lush illustrations, flaps and a huge foldout but no words.

Flying Frogs and Walking Fish

By: Steve Jenkins, Robin Page
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

A walking octopus? A swimming elephant? A flying snake?  Yes! Animals move in varied, unexpected ways. Stunning collage illustrations and informative text present a range of animals and how they move. Additional information about where these animals live is included.

Looking for Bongo

By: Eric Velasquez
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

One morning, the young narrator cannot find his much loved toy, Bongo. He finally finds it but comes up with a smart plan to prevent Bongo from running away again. Lushly hued, expressive illustrations and a narration that incorporates Spanish words and phrases create a memorable family story.

Marisol McDonald and the Monster/Marisol McDonald y el monstruo

By: Monica Brown
Illustrated by: Sara Palacios
Genre: Fiction, Mystery
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Marisol McDonald likes the letter M and most words that begin with it. Except for MONSTER. The night noises Marisol hears turnout not to be a monster at all. The satisfying story is recognizable, reassuring and entertaining, presented in both English and Spanish. 

Maybe Something Beautiful

By: F. Isabel Campoy, Theresa Howell
Illustrated by: Rafael López
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Mira brings color and builds community through her beautiful art which she first gives to individuals and then has them contribute their own paintings. Based on an Urban Art Trail in San Diego, the animated illustrations evoke Mexican folk art while remaining child-like. 

My New Mom and Me

By: Renata Galindo
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Becoming a family can be hard, especially when the child doesn’t look like his/her parent. A small puppy narrates how “Mom is learning how to be my mom and I am learning how to be Mom’s kid. We are learning how to be a family.” Soft illustrations and gentle text tell an encouraging story.

Old MacDonald Had a Truck

By: Steve Goetz
Illustrated by: Eda Kaban
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

This Old MacDonald not only has a farm with animals (E-I-E-I-O!) but lots of construction equipment (like a bulldozer and an excavator) and, happily, a handy Mrs. MacDonald who fixes them! Comic illustrations add humor, surprise, and spirit to the recognizable cadence of the story.

Opposite Zoo

By: Il Sung Na
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

When the zoo closes at dark, a monkey opens his cage to explore. It sees a hairy lion and a bald hippo; noisy monkeys and a quiet turtle and more. When the sun comes up, the monkey’s door closes and the zoo opens for visitors. Playful, evocative illustrations complement the charming zoo and its varied inhabitants.

Run for Your Life: Predators and Prey on the African Savanna

By: Lola Schaefer
Illustrated by: Paul Meisel
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Energetic illustrations depict a day in the life of animals on the African savanna. They lunge and trot, leap and scurry as they hunt and are hunted. The animals’ speeds are noted in a concluding note. 

The Airport Book

By: Lisa Brown
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

To visit grandparents, a family travels to the airport, boards the plane, and flies to their sunny destination. What is seen along the way is noted in crisp text and straightforward, appealing illustrations. A missing toy monkey adds a satisfying subplot to follow visually.

There Is a Tribe of Kids

By: Lane Smith
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

A colony of penguins, a pod of whales, a formation of rocks, and other groups of animate and inanimate things bring a lonely child to his own group. The joyful reunion creates a family. Stylized illustrations are rich with humor and liveliness, deserving of many readings.

For 6-9 Year Olds

A Morning with Grandpa

By: Sylvia Liu
Illustrated by: Christina Forshay
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Mei Mei and her grandfather do tai chi together in Gong Gong’s backyard. Gong Gong even tries to learn a bit of yoga with Mei Mei. The warm relationship between adult and child is evident in expressive, sometimes humorous illustration and playful text. A guide to basic tai chi and yoga moves concludes the book.

Batman’s Dark Secret

By: Kelley Puckett
Illustrated by: Jon J Muth
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

How Bruce Wayne became Batman is told in a picture book (not comic book). Muth’s well-crafted watercolor illustrations are dramatic accompanied by a brief telling of how young Bruce overcomes his fears of the dark by falling into a bat cave.

Follow the Moon Home

By: Philippe Cousteau, Deborah Hopkinson
Illustrated by: Meilo So
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Loggerhead turtles are confused by artificial lights on the beach. A group of children work to turn them out so that turtle hatchlings can follow the moon to the sea. The story of how children became activists and can continue to contribute positively is engagingly presented.  Suggestions conclude this attractive, can-do book.

James to the Rescue

By: Elise Broach
Illustrated by: Kelly Murphy
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Marvin, James’ beetle friend, goes collecting (finding useful things for their cupboard home) when he must get his human friend to help his injured uncle. Even though Marvin is a beetle, his emotions are as human as James’ in this well paced, generously illustrated and thoroughly engaging novel.

Lincoln and Kennedy: A Pair to Compare

By: Gene Barretta
Genre: Nonfiction, Biography
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

This brief introduction to two well-known U.S. Presidents presents similarities in their lives and presidencies on opposing pages. Illustrations are informative but cartoonish to suggest that this is a first look at these men.

Olinguito, from A to Z!: Unveiling the Cloud Forest / Olinguito, de la A a la Z!: Descubriendo el bosque numblado

By: Lulu Delacre
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

The alphabet is used to introduce animals of the cloud forest and its most recently discovered resident, the elusive olinguito. Handsome illustrations and brief information appear in both Spanish and English as does more complete information at this stunning book’s conclusion.

Place Value

By: David Adler
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

In this playful introduction to number values, readers are reminded that “Order is important in both words and numbers.” Cheerful monkeys, chefs from the Banana Café, host this exploration making place values from one to upwards of a trillion understandable and relatable. 

Rules of the House

By: Mac Barnett
Illustrated by: Matt Myers
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

The narrator is a rule-follower; his sister Jenny is a rule breaker. When Jenny breaks a rule, her brother must break a few in order to save her from the unique and quite humorous monsters she released. The outrageous tale is told and illustrated with verve and wit.

The First Step: How One Girl Put Segregation on Trial

By: Susan Goodman
Illustrated by: E.B. Lewis
Genre: Nonfiction, Biography
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Sarah Roberts lived in Boston in 1847 but was prevented from attending school. While her family finally won the right for Sarah to go to the all-white school, the struggle for desegregation continued. This little-known story of one child’s impact on history is accessible in text and touching, realistic watercolor illustrations. Additional information is appended.

The Hole Story of the Doughnut

By: Pat Miller
Illustrated by: Vincent Kirsch
Genre: Nonfiction, Biography
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

A seafaring cook named Hanson Crockett Gregory is credited with inventing the sweet fried treats we know as doughnuts. Lighthearted, rounded illustrations combine with a humorous narrative to explore the fact and fiction of Hanson and his tasty innovation.

The Kid from Diamond Street: The Extraordinary Story of Baseball Legend Edith Houghton

By: Audrey Vernick
Illustrated by: Steven Salerno
Genre: Biography
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Not only did Edith Houghton play baseball in 1912, she played when she was only 10 years old!  As an adult, Edith became a baseball scout, looking for other baseball talent. Her little-known story is well told and handsomely illustrated.

The Real Poop on Pigeons

By: Kevin McCloskey
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

When a couple complains about pigeons in the park, two children in pigeon costumes come to give them the real story about pigeons. Done in an open comic book format, this easier-to-read book is sure to entertain as well as inform.

The Thank You Book

By: Mo Willems
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

When Piggie decides to thank everyone that has ever appeared in a book with him and Gerald, he forgets someone very important – Gerald! But Gerald reminds Piggie that one more thank you is needed. Fans of Elephant and Piggie will delight in what is supposed to be the final book.

Thunder Boy

By: Sherman Alexie
Illustrated by: Yuyi Morales
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

He is named after his father and is known as Little Thunder. But Little Thunder wants his name to reflect something special about him, what he does or who he is. Together with his dad, the perfect name is found. Vibrant illustrations and engaging narration present a recognizable concern.

Trampolines

By: Jenny VanVoorst
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

What does jumping on a trampoline have to do with science? Lots, it turns out! The basic physics laws involved are presented in crisp, readable text and action-packed photographs. For readers interested in ecology, Arctic Food Chains (Pogo: Who Eats What?) by Rebecca Pettiford (Jump! 1620314274) is similarly formatted and quite interesting (with just a hint of blood in the photographs). Table of contents, index and additional resources for each title expands the use.

Treat

By: Mary Sullivan
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

A pudgy brown and white dog looks everywhere for a treat — from granny’s bedroom to the baby’s crib. Nothing … until the girls offer a special treat to the greedy canine. Cartoon illustrations and the word “treat” in different fonts in a comic book format move the slapstick humor along to a satisfying conclusion.

When Green Becomes Tomatoes: Poems for All Seasons

By: Julie Fogliano
Illustrated by: Julie Morstad
Genre: Poetry
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Short poems and gentle illustrations present seasons almost as a journal. Each entry captures natural beauty and emotions that often accompany them. For example the March 13 entry: “politely/but tired of mittens/I asked winter to please tell the snow/thank you very much, but no”.

Whose Eye Am I?

By: Shelley Rotner
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

“Each animal has its own special way of seeing.” Clear, close-up photographs of animals’ eyes and the question posed in the title are followed by more information about other animals. A variety of animals appear, from owls and pigeons to alligators and frogs. Information about the human eye concludes this fascinating look at ways of seeing.

Yaks Yak: Animal Word Pairs

By: Linda Sue Park
Illustrated by: Jennifer Black Reinhardt
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Sometimes animal names are also verbs. See what happens when “Bats bat” or “Slugs slug” in each vivacious, double page spread. The definition of the verb is included for each pairing. Additional information (including etymology) on the animal names and verbs is appended.

You Never Heard of Casey Stengel?!

By: Jonah Winter
Illustrated by: Barry Blitt
Genre: Biography
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

He was known for his eccentricities and for being the winningest NY Yankees’ manager. Meet Casey Stengel who played an acceptable game of baseball but had “even greater skills at being a goofball.” His life makes a good story, told in an informal, chatty style and caricature-like illustrations sure to appeal even to non-baseball fans!

For 9-12 year olds

A Week Without Tuesday

By: Angela Banks
Genre: Fiction, Fantasy, Mystery
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Tuesday McGillycuddy, first introduced in Finding Serendipity is back to save stories from colliding and writers from being hurt when thrown far away from where they start. 

Alamo All Stars

By: Nathan Hale
Genre: Nonfiction, Biography
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Actual events and people from 19th century Texas come to life in the Hale’s latest look at history. Humor and fact combine in image and word presented in comic book format.

Demon Dentist

By: David Walliams
Genre: Fiction, Science Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Fans of Roald Dahl will enjoy spending time with young Alfie as he overcomes tough times and the new – and truly evil – dentist who’s come to town. Over-the-top humor and a fast pace are complemented by prolific black/white line drawings in this witty, satirical novel. In the audio version of this book, the author and cast bring the riotous characters to life.

Glow: Animals with Their Own Nightlights

By: W.H. Black
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Why be afraid of the dark when there is so much to see? Whether it’s used to hunt, hide, find a friend, or escape an enemy, bioluminescence—the ability to glow—is a unique adaptation in nature. In this fun and fascinating nonfiction picture book, join world-renowned photographers and biologists on their close encounters with the curious creatures that make their own light.

Going Where It’s Dark

By: Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Buck Anderson’s friend, David, has moved; now Buck has no one to share his underground explorations or his everyday troubles including being bullied for his stutter. How Buck overcomes his problems and has a cave named in his honor is told in a tense, fast narration.  

Ideas Are All Around

By: Philip Stead
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Readers are invited to join a young writer “to walk on the page.” Part journal, part imaginative jaunt, the multimedia images and typeface which seems to have come from the typewriter (that is seen at the end) create a unique look at creativity and writing. 

Living Fossils: Clues to the Past

By: Caroline Arnold
Illustrated by: Andrew Plant
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Scientists thought the coelacanth had been extinct for about 65 million years when one was caught off the South African coast in 1938. This is a fascinating examination of “living fossils”, plants or animals that are close to their ancient relatives. Each is presented “then” and “now” in detailed, realistic paintings and readable text. Additional resources conclude this fascinating book.

Now You See Them, Now You Don’t: Poems about Creatures That Hide

By: David Harrison
Illustrated by: Giles Laroche
Genre: Nonfiction, Poetry
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Regardless of where they live, camouflage helps protect animals. Cut-paper collage and short poems introduce a variety of insects and animals that fly, swim, and live on land or in water.  Poetry is short, rhythmic, and appealing followed by additional information and further resources. 

Our Moon: New Discoveries About Earth’s Closest Companion

By: Elaine Scott
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

People have always been fascinated by the moon. Since Galileo, humans have walked on the moon, created stronger telescopes and more.  The historical and current examination of Earth’s closest neighbor is presented in a generously illustrated, very handsome, and comprehensible package.

Roller Girl

By: Victoria Jamieson
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Astrid realizes that her interests differ from those of her best friend but decides to pursue them anyway. How the girls’ friendship weathers this is key to this story as much as information about the sport in this engaging graphic novel.

Scam on the Cam

By: Clementine Beauvais
Genre: Fiction, Mystery
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Move over Nancy Drew; Sophie – better known as Sesame – Seade is on the job! Here, Sesame and her friend, Jeremy, solve the mystery of why the rowing team is getting sick. Told with humor and solid pacing, this is sure to engage light mystery fans.

Secret Coders

By: Gene Yang
Illustrated by: Mike Holmes
Genre: Fiction, Mystery, Science Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Hopper’s new school, Stately Academy, is more creepy than scholarly as the 12-year-old girl soon learns. But with her new friends, they discover the school’s secrets and address them through computer coding. The adventures of this multicultural cast of kids continue in Paths and Portals as the series goes on.  

Shelter Pet Squad: Paloma

By: Cynthia Lord
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Can Suzannah bear to let Paloma, the puppy she’s cared for ever since she arrived at the shelter, be adopted into a permanent home? Her dilemma is happily resolved in the latest installment of the Shelter Pet Squad. Information about shelter dog adoptions is included at book’s end.

The Family Fletcher Takes Rock Island

By: Dana Alison Levy
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

The four Fletcher boys (each from a different background; each adopted) and their two fathers vacation in New England. Together the boys and their neighbors, the Galindo girls, help solve the mystery of the closed lighthouse in this fast-paced novel with recognizable events and personalities. The characters in this stand-alone book were first introduced in The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher.

The Tree in the Courtyard: Looking Through Anne Frank’s Window

By: Jeff Gottesfeld
Illustrated by: Peter McCarty
Genre: Fiction, Historical Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

An old horse chestnut tree observes a girl in a window – writing and petting a cat – that is, until the soldiers came. The summer the girl would have turned 82, the tree was struck by lightning, though both girl and tree live on. The lyrical story of Anne Frank is expanded by sepia toned illustrations that use delicate lines. An afterword about Anne concludes this handsome volume.

The Truth About My Unbelievable Summer

By: Davide Cali
Illustrated by: Benjamin Chaud
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

The “what I did on my summer vacation” will never be the same after reading what this young fellow did!  It all started when he found a message in a bottle which took him around the world from the Great Wall of China to India’s Taj Mahal. Locales both real and imagined are only noted in witty line and wash illustration.

Way to Glow! Amazing Creatures that Light Up in the Dark

By: Lisa Regan
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Whether they’re fish or fungi, these creatures share the ability to create their own light or glow.  Most live in deep seas but some – like fireflies – are easily seen on land particularly at dusk. Two volumes present information about bioluminescent animals in amazing photographs and lucid text.

When Mischief Came to Town

By: Katrina Nannestad
Genre: Fiction, Historical Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Inge Maria leaves her beloved Copenhagen to live with Dizzy, her seemingly stern grandmother. But Inge Maria brings mischief, laughter, and warmth to Bornholm, her new island home. The tale unfolds through Inge Maria’s naïve and good-natured voice.

You’re Pulling My Leg! 400 Human-Body Sayings from Head to Toe

By: Pat Street, Eric Brace
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Can thumbs really be green or feet like ice? The English language is filled with idioms, proverbs, metaphors, and similes that can be confusing. Many of them are explained here in text that provides the maxim comically illustrated. Altogether, this is fun to browse and to expand understanding of myriad sayings.

Audio Books

Appleblossom the Possum

By: Holly Goldberg Sloan
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Young possums work together to overcome the trouble they find themselves in. A lively but sweet story read with humor.

Demon Dentist

By: David Walliams
Genre: Fiction, Science Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Fans of Roald Dahl will enjoy spending time with young Alfie as he overcomes tough times and the new – and truly evil – dentist who’s come to town. Over-the-top humor and a fast pace are complemented by prolific black/white line drawings in this witty, satirical novel. In the audio version of this book, the author and cast bring the riotous characters to life.

Echo

By: Pam Muñoz Ryan
Genre: Fiction, Historical Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

A harmonica and a bit of magic link different children from different times. 

Jump Back Paul: The Life and Poems of Paul Laurence Dunbar

By: Sally Derby
Genre: Nonfiction, Biography, Poetry
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Experience the breadth and depth of Paul Laurence Dunbar's poetry. From his childhood in poverty and his early promise as a poet through his struggles to find acceptance as a writer and his tumultuous romance with his wife, to his immense fame and his untimely death, Dunbar's story is one of triumph and tragedy. But his legacy remains in his much-beloved poetry — told in both Standard English and in dialect — which continues to delight and inspire readers today.

The War That Saved My Life

By: Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
Genre: Fiction, Historical Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Sophisticated listeners will appreciate this touching World War II story of a disabled girl learning to respect herself in spite of her uncaring mother.

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