Summer Reading List for Kids 2015


Recommended Reading List 2016

Adam and Thomas
by Aharon Appelfeld. Illus. by Philippe Dumas. Tr. by Jeffrey M. Green. Seven Stories/Triangle Square.
In the last months of World War II, two Jewish boys are taken from the Ghetto by their mothers to the forest of the Eastern Front and told to wait for their return. The boys forge a strong friendship, learning from one another and helping others escape through the woods. (Batchelder Honor Book)

Adventures with Waffles
by Maria Parr. Illus. by Kate Forrester. Tr. by Guy Puzey. Candlewick.
Whether sledding with chickens or boating with cows, there’s never a dull moment when neighbors Lena and Trille are together. The Norwegian village comes alive in this tale of family, friendship, and adventure.

Almost Home
by Joan Bauer. Viking, 2012.
Realistic—Sugar and her mother try to make a new start in Chicago, but with unanticipated struggles, they find themselves homeless. Joined by a rescue dog named Shush, Sugar learns to make the most of her new life.

Blackbird Fly
by Erin Entrada Kelly. HarperCollins/Greenwillow.
Eighth-grader Apple, a Filipino American, faces bullying, parental conflicts, fickle friends, and a lack of self-confidence with the help of a Beatles cassette, new friends, and the determination to play the guitar.

The Blackthorn Key
by Kevin Sands. Aladdin
In 1665 London, Christopher, an apothecary’s apprentice, and his best friend Tom attempt to uncover the truth behind a mysterious cult. They follow a trail of puzzles, codes, pranks, and danger toward a powerful secret.

by Pam Muñoz Ryan. Scholastic
This original fairytale intertwines with historical fiction to explore music and its power to save, heal, and set free. (Newbery Honor Book)

Enormous Smallness: A Story of E. E. Cummings
by Matthew Burgess. Illus. by Kris Di Giacomo. Enchanted Lion
From an early age, poet E. E. Cummings loved words. Burgess’s text, enhanced by Di Giacomo’s collage illustrations, explores Cummings’ life from his childhood to his career as a poet.

by Carl Hiaasen, Knopf, 2012
Realistic— Wahoo Cray’s pop, a well-known South Florida animal wrangler, can’t work after getting a concussion. Wahoo must handle a new client: Expedition Survival!, a reality show featuring a bumbling, pompous star who is trouble at every turn.

Doll Bones
by Holly Black, Simon & Schuster/Margaret K. McElderry, 2013.
Magical Realism/Adventure—Until recently, Zach, Poppy, and Alice have been playing an ongoing game with dolls and action fi gures. When Poppy takes the queen, an antique bone china doll, she is haunted in her dreams by the ghost of a girl. Can the friends stop the haunting?

by Raina Telgemeier, Scholastic/Graphix, 2012
Graphic Novel—Callie has Broadway dreams for her school’s production of Moon over Mississippi. Will the drama on and off the stage prevent the show from going on?

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library
by Chris Grabenstein, Random House, 2013
Mystery/Adventure—Kyle and 11 other 12-year-olds win a contest to spend the night in the brand-new, high-tech library built by famous game maker Luigi Lemoncello. To be able to leave, they learn, they must find a secret escape out of the library using only what’s in it.

The False Prince
by Jennifer A. Nielsen, Scholastic, 2012
Adventure—A devious nobleman engages four orphans in a brutal competition where treachery and deceit unfold, until finally, a truth is revealed that may prove more dangerous than all of the lies put together.

Fish in a Tree
by Lynda Mullaly Hunt. Penguin/Nancy Paulsen
With the help of an insightful teacher and quirky friends, Ally discovers how smart she really is in spite of being identified as dyslexic.

Frederick’s Journey: The Life of Frederick Douglass
by Doreen Rappaport. Illus. by London Ladd. Disney/Jump at the Sun.
The story of Frederick Douglass’ inspirational life and quest for equal rights unfolds with dramatic illustrations and powerful language, including quotes from Douglass.

Full Cicada Moon
by Marilyn Hilton. Penguin/Dial
Set against the backdrop of the first lunar landing, this free verse novel features Mimi Oliver, a half Japanese, half African American girl who learns about fitting in and standing up for what’s right.

Funny Bones: Posada and His Day of the Dead Calaveras
by Duncan Tonatiuh. Illus. by the author. Abrams.
In this book about artist José Guadalupe Posada, Tonatiuh juxtaposes his own artwork with Posada’s iconic Dia de Muertos illustrations and life, telling the story of a remarkable man and time in Mexican history. (Sibert Medal Book & Belpré Illustrator Honor Book) 

 Fuzzy Mud
by Louis Sachar. Random/Delacorte.
Taking a shortcut through the off-limits woods to avoid a bully, Tamaya and Marshall encounter fuzzy-looking mud that unleashes a medical and environmental disaster.

by Alex Gino. Scholastic.
George identifies as a girl; if only the rest of the world would too. With the help of best friend Kelly, George takes the first steps to becoming Melissa, her true self.

Gone Crazy in Alabama.
by Rita Williams-Garcia. HarperCollins/Amistad.
Sisters Delphine, Vonetta, and Fern travel to rural Alabama to visit Big Ma during the summer of 1969, where they find out about southern culture, animal rights, and the strength of their family, both past and present.

Hamster Princess: Harriet the Invincible
by Ursula Vernon. Illus. by the author. Penguin/Dial.
In a spunky graphic novel retelling of Sleeping Beauty, Harriet, a hamster princess, embarks on many wild adventures until the curse on her backfires and she needs to save her parents.

Horten’s Miraculous Mechanisms
by Lissa Evans, Sterling Children’s Books, 2012.
Mystery/Adventure—Great-Uncle Tony disappeared 50 years ago, but 10-year-old Stuart picks up the trail as if it were yesterday, and he is soon on a quest to follow the clues to his great-uncle Tony’s fantastic mechanical magic workshop.

The Hypnotists
by Gordon Korman, Scholastic, 2013.
Fantasy—Jackson Opus is a hypnotist who can make anyone bend to his whim. When Jax joins an elite group of hypnotists, he finds himself part of a conspiracy that has Jax wondering just whom he can trust.

In a Glass Grimmly
by Adam Gidwitz, Dutton, 2012.
Fantasy—Princess Jill joins up with cousin Jack and a frog; they set off on a life-or-death quest to find the “seeing glass,” encountering goblins, mermaids, and a monster. Gory, hilarious, smart, and lyrical.

by Sage Blackwood, HarperCollins, 2013.
Fantasy—A wizard’s apprentice sets off on a quest through the dangerous Urwald, a magical forest full of witches and were-creatures, and discovers he plays a key role in its survival.

Keeper of the Lost Cities
by Shannon Messenger, Simon & Schuster/Aladdin, 2012.
Fantasy/Adventure—Twelve-year-old supersmart Sophie learns that she is actually an elf. Thrust into unfamiliar elven society, she investigates her origins and the deadly fi res sweeping the human world.

Lailah’s Lunchbox: A Ramadan Story
by Reem Faruqi. Illus. by Lea Lyon. Tilbury.
Lailah, a young girl who has been looking forward to fasting for Ramadan for her first time, suddenly feels shy because she is at a new school in a new country.

Liar and Spy
by Rebecca Stead, Random House/Wendy Lamb, 2012.
Realistic—Georges adjusts to moving from a house to an apartment, his father’s efforts to start a new business, his mother’s extra shifts as a nurse, being picked on at school, and Safer, a boy who wants his help spying on another resident of their building.

The Lions of Little Rock
by Kristin Levine, Putnam, 2012.
Historical Fiction—In 1958 school integration was a political battle. Marlee is smart, but terrifi ed to say things aloud in public. Then she befriends—and talks (!) to-Lizzie, the new girl in her middle school. Lizzie abruptly leaves school. Why? Marlee wants her friend back.

Lost in the Sun
by Lisa Graff. Penguin/Philomel
In his efforts to make a fresh start in middle school, Trent struggles to put a traumatic event behind him. Fallon, the class outcast, strives to help Trent let go of his guilt.

Mad about Monkeys
by Owen Davey. Illus. by the author. Flying Eye.
Learn about more than 250 species of monkeys from around the world through a series of warm illustrations and fascinating facts.

Mars Evacuees
by Sophia McDougall. HarperCollins.
A war between Earth and aliens leads to the evacuation of children to Mars. When the grown-ups disappear, Alice, her friends, and a robot goldfish make a discovery that might just change everything.

The Marvels
by Brian Selznick. Illus. by the author. Scholastic.
Two seemingly unrelated plots—Billy Marvel’s wordless, illustrated story set in 1776; and Joseph Jervis’s prose story set in 1990—come together in a tale of mystery, adventure, friendship, and family.

Mesmerized: How Ben Franklin Solved a Mystery That Baffled All of France
by Mara Rockliff. Illus. by Iacopo Bruno. Candlewick. Follow along as Ben Franklin applies the scientific method to a new mysterious phenomenon Dr. Mesmer has been spreading across France. A whimsical look at science and history.

My Story, My Dance: Robert Battle’s Journey to Alvin Ailey
by Lesa Cline-Ransome. Illus. by James E. Ransome. Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman.
Once Robert Battle’s leg braces were off, nothing could keep him from flying. With determination and love of dance, he became the artistic director of the renowned Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.

My Two Blankets
by Irena Kobald. Illus. by Freya Blackwood. HMH.
While learning a new language in a new country, a young woman compares her native language to a warm, comfortable blanket. Soon she has two comfortable blankets—the old and the new language.

Murder Is Bad Manners
by Robin Stevens. Simon & Schuster.
Hazel Wong and her best friend Daisy Wells form a secret detective agency at their boarding school. They open their first big case when their teacher, Miss Bell, turns up dead.

The Nest
by Kenneth Oppel. Illus. by Jon Klassen. Simon & Schuster.
Steve is always anxious and his baby brother’s health issues take it to another level.  When he is approached by the Wasp Queen, who claims she can solve his worries, he learns agreeing with the wasps comes with a dangerous price. Haunting and eerie.

Odessa Again
by Dana Reinhardt, Random House/Wendy Lamb, 2013.
Fantasy—Odessa’s dad is remarrying, but shouldn’t that mean marrying her mother again? Stomping around her attic bedroom, she discovers a loophole that allows her to travel back hours in time. What would you do over if you could?

The One and Only Ivan
by Katherine Applegate, HarperCollins, 2012.
Fantasy—Ivan is a gorilla who lives at the Exit 8 Big Top Mall and Video Arcade. When baby elephant Ruby arrives, Ivan realizes they deserve better than their miserable environment. How does a gorilla execute a plan to give Ruby and himself a better life?

Poet: The Remarkable Story of George Moses Horton
by Don Tate. Illus. by the author. Peachtree.
George Moses Horton overcame slavery and illiteracy to become a remarkable poet. His love of words and success as a poet will inspire readers.

P.S. Be Eleven

by Rita Williams-Garcia, HarperCollins/Amistad, 2013.
Historical—The world is changing like crazy in the 1960s. Delphine’s mother reminds her (by mail) not to grow up too fast, to remember to just be 11. But each adult in Delphine’s life has a different idea of what that means.

Red Butterfly
by A. L. Sonnichsen. Illus. by Amy June Bates. Simon & Schuster.
Kara and her American mother are different from everyone they know in their Chinese neighborhood. When a medical emergency forces them into the mire of Chinese bureaucracy, Kara’s future becomes desperate and unpredictable.

Roller Girl
by Victoria Jamieson. Illus. by the author. Penguin/Dial.
Astrid falls in love with roller derby and learns how to be tougher, stronger, and fearless. Jamieson perfectly captures the highs and lows of growing up in this dynamic graphic novel. (Newbery Honor Book)

Sex Is a Funny Word: A Book about Bodies, Feelings, and YOU
by Cory Silverberg. Illus. by Fiona Smyth. Seven Stories/Triangle Square.
This age-appropriate and inclusive resource, featuring cartoon-style illustrations, is aimed at young children and their caregivers. It invites conversations about sex, gender, and the human body.

The Secret of the Fortune Wookiee: An Origami Yoda Book
by Tom Angleberger, Abrams/Amulet, 2012.
Humor—Can Sara’s advice, provided by an origami Wookiee, possibly replace Dwight and the all-knowing Origami Yoda at McQuarrie Middle School?

Shadow on the Mountain
by Margi Preus, Abrams/Amulet, 2012.
Historical—Inspired by a true story, this adventure set in Norway during World War II tells the story of a young boy who joins the Resistance, must learn whom to trust, and risks his life for the cause.

The Spindlers
by Lauren Oliver, HarperCollins, 2012.
Fantasy—Accompanied by an eccentric, human-size rat, Liza embarks on a perilous quest through an underground realm to save her brother, Patrick, who has been stolen by the evilest of creatures—the spiderlike spindlers.

Splendors and Glooms
by Laura Amy Schlitz, Candlewick, 2012.
Historical Fantasy—Orphans Lizzie Rose and Parsefall must save their friend Clara from a centuries-old curse that was put upon her by the devious puppeteer Gaspare Grisini.

Starry River of the Sky
by Grace Lin, Little, Brown, 2012.
Fantasy—Rendi, a runaway, lands at a remote inn and reluctantly exchanges his labor for room and board. Only he hears the sky moaning and notices the moon is missing. When storyteller Madame Chang arrives, Rendi faces his problems, and helps solve the village’s problem.

Stella by Starlight.
by Sharon M. Draper.  Atheneum.
In 1932 North Carolina, Stella feels the effects of a Klan cross burning, segregation, voter registration, and a major house fire in a story of change in a close-knit community.

A Tangle of Knots
by Lisa Graff, Philomel, 2013.
Fantasy—Not everyone has a “Talent,” but orphaned Cady does; she knows what each person’s ideal cake is, and can bake it perfectly. Her special ability helps solve the interconnected mysteries of her past and present, but it also puts her in danger of losing her special “Talent.”

Terrible Typhoid Mary: A True Story of the Deadliest Cook in America.
by Susan Campbell Bartoletti. illus. HMH.
Known as a carrier of the deadly typhoid fever, Mary Mallon was also a victim of civil rights violations and overly harsh treatment. Her nuanced biography reveals the true complexity of her infamous case.

Three Times Lucky
by Sheila Turnage, Dial, 2012.
Mystery—In Tupelo Landing, the Colonel, who rescued and adopted Mo when she washed up during a hurricane as a baby, owns a café. But who is Mo’s real mom? All is well—until a neighbor turns
up dead, and Mo’s best friend Dale is a suspect.

Tricky Vic: The Impossibly True Story of the Man Who Sold the Eiffel Tower.
by Greg Pizzoli. Illus. by the author. Penguin/Viking.
At the turn of the twentieth century, Czechoslovakian Robert Miller became a con artist. Calling himself Vic, he started with small schemes, working his way toward selling the Eiffel Tower

The True Blue Scouts of Sugar Man Swamp
by Kathi Appelt, Simon & Schuster/Atheneum, 2013.
Fantasy/Humor—Twelve-year-old Chap and Swamp Scouts (young raccoons) Bingo and J’miah must wake the ancient Sugar Man in order to save the swamp from a greedy land developer. But he
might be really cranky!

28 Days: Moments in Black History That Changed the World
by Charles R. Smith Jr. Illus. by Shane W. Evans. Roaring Brook/Neal Porter.
From the shooting of Crispus Attucks to the inauguration of President Barack Obama, 28 moments in Black history are celebrated through poetry, prose, and vivid illustrations.

Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer.
by Kelly Jones. Illus. by Katie Kath. Knopf.
Told primarily in letters, a series of humorous events kicks off when Sophie discovers chickens with astonishing abilities after her family inherits her great uncle’s farm.

The War That Saved My Life.
by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley. Penguin/Dial.
Bradley’s powerful plot, remarkably drawn characters, and sparse language are outstanding components of this novel about courage, community, and conviction. (Newbery Honor Book)

by R. J. Palacio, Knopf, 2012.
Realistic—Ten-year-old Auggie, born with extreme facial abnormalities, transitions from homeschooling to fi fth grade at Beecher Prep. Can his classmates and others get past Auggie’s extraordinary face to see the great, normal kid he is?

 A little more advanced

 Baba Yaga’s Assistant.
by Marika McCoola. Illus. by Emily Carroll. Candlewick.
Using skills learned from her beloved grandma, Masha must pass a series of tests to become a witch’s assistant and get her annoying stepsister home safely. Graphic panels magically blend the contemporary with the traditional.

The Boys Who Challenged Hitler: Knud Pedersen and the Churchill Club.
by Phillip Hoose. illus. Farrar.
This is a true World War II story of Danish teens who became resistance fighters while most adults in their country reacted passively to the Nazi takeover. Hoose weaves Pedersen’s words into an adventurous narrative about the young heroes. (Sibert Honor Book)

Child Soldier: When Boys and Girls Are Used in War.
by Jessica Dee Humphreys and Michel Chikwanine. Illus. by Claudia Dávila. Kids Can.
Chikwanine chronicles the harrowing tale of his kidnapping at age five in the Democratic Republic of Congo, including the horrors of life as a child soldier. A graphic-novel biography.

Cuckoo Song.
by Frances Hardinge. Abrams/Amulet.
After almost drowning, Triss deals with gaps in her memory, her brother’s ghost, a vengeful sister, and The Architect who seems to be orchestrating so much of her life. A cinematic and spine-tingling tale.

Drowned City: Hurricane Katrina and New Orleans.
by Don Brown. Illus. by the author. HMH.
Heroes surface, and people find courage in this exceptional graphic novel that addresses incompetence, racism, and the resilience of the people of the Crescent City. (Sibert Honor Book)

Enchanted Air: Two Cultures, Two Wings: A Memoir.
by Margarita Engle. Atheneum.
The daughter of an American father and Cuban mother, poet and novelist Engle describes her childhood living between two countries during a time of political tension for Cuba and the U.S. (Belpré Auhtor Medal Book)

First Flight around the World: The Adventures of the American Fliers Who Won the Race
by Tim Grove. illus. Abrams.
In 1924, a group of brave men faced violent weather, unreliable navigation, crashes, and unfamiliar foreign cultures in their goal to win the race to be the first to circumnavigate the globe by plane.

Goodbye Stranger
by Rebecca Stead. Random/Wendy Lamb.
With multiple perspectives, this tale explores the bonds and limits of friendship, as Bridge and her friends navigate the inevitable changes of growing up.

The Hired Girl
by Laura Amy Schlitz. Candlewick.
Using diary entries, 14-year-old Joan shares her journey toward a better life. New surroundings and experiences in Baltimore lead to moments of adventure and self-discovery.

The Lightning Queen
by Laura Resau. Scholastic.
An unlikely friendship between Esma, a Romani girl, and Teo, a Mixteco boy, underpins an adventurous story that spans several generations and presents insights into two marginalized cultures.

Listen, Slowly
by Thanhhà Lại. HarperCollins.
California-born Mai learns the true meaning of family and friendship when she travels with her grandmother to her native Vietnam and learns about her grandfather’s fate.

Most Dangerous: Daniel Ellsberg and the Secret History of the Vietnam War
by Steve Sheinkin. illus. Roaring Brook.
Daniel Ellsberg, a former Pentagon insider, risks everything in order to reveal the corruption and deception that led to U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War.

My Seneca Village
by Marilyn Nelson. Namelos.
Forty-one vivid poems, with voices inspired by actual individuals, present a historical glimpse at Seneca Village, the first thriving African-American community in the U.S., which, before it was razed, stood where Central Park is today.

Orbiting Jupiter
by Gary D. Schmidt. Clarion.
Jack’s new 13-year-old foster brother, Joseph, has a checkered past, including fathering a daughter named Jupiter. While Joseph’s love for Jupiter compels Jack’s family to do everything they can to help him, it may not be enough.

Rhythm Ride: A Road Trip through the Motown Sound
by Andrea Davis Pinkney. illus. Roaring Brook.
Take a ride with “the Groove” through Motown.  Discover how Berry Gordy Jr. created musical hits and grew his company from a small business in Detroit to a huge studio in California.

The Seventh Most Important Thing
by Shelley Pearsall. Knopf.
After throwing a brick at the Junk Man’s head, 13-year-old Arthur is sentenced to assist him. Little does he know that the junk he collects is part of a significant work of art.

The Smoking Mirror
by David Bowles. IFWG.
In an action-packed, fantasy novel, that combines Aztec and Mayan mythology with life in contemporary South Texas and Mexico, 12-year-old twins descend into the Land of the Dead to find their mother. (Belpré Author Honor Book)

The Thing about Jellyfish
by Ali Benjamin. Little, Brown.
Suzy Swanson suspects that a rare jellyfish sting caused the death of her friend. With imagination and determination, she sets out on a journey to prove her theory—and starts her journey of healing.

Turning 15 on the Road to Freedom: My Story of the 1965 Selma Voting Rights March.
by Lynda Blackmon Lowery, as told to Elspeth Leacock and Susan Buckley. Illus. by P. J. Loughran. Penguin/Dial.
This highly personal account of the historic 1965 voting rights march from Selma to Montgomery gives voice to activists participating in Civil Rights history. (Sibert Honor Book)




2015 Summer Reading List


Brown Girl Dreaming, Jacqueline Woodson (Ages 9-12)
In vivid poems that reflect the joy of finding her voice through writing stories, an award-winning author shares what it was like to grow up in the 1960s and 1970s in both the North and the South.

Growing up Pedro, Matt Tavares (Ages 9-12)
Traces the champion Red Sox pitcher’s improbable rise from a baseball-loving youth in the Dominican Republic to a World Series star, describing how his enduring bond with his older brother shaped his athletic dreams.

Helen’s Big World, Doreen Rappaport (Ages 0-8)
An introduction to the life and legacy of Helen Keller and her teacher Annie Sullivan.

Looking at Lincoln, Maira Kalman (Ages 9-12)
A brief look at the life of United States president Abraham Lincoln.

 Thomas Jefferson, Maia Kalman (Ages 0-8)
Sheds light on the fascinating life and interests of the Renaissance man who was our third president.


A Dragon’s Guide to the Care and Feeding of Humans, Laurence Yep and Joanne Ryder  (Ages 9-12)
Crusty dragon Miss Drake’s new pet human, precocious ten-year-old Winnie, not only thinks Miss Drake is her pet, she accidentally brings to life her “sketchlings” of mysterious and fantastic creatures hidden in San Francisco, causing mayhem among its residents.

 The Doll People (series), Ann Martin (Ages 9-12)
A family of porcelain dolls that has lived in the same house for one hundred years is taken aback when a new family of plastic dolls arrives and doesn’t follow The Doll Code of Honor.

Wings of Fire: The Dragonet Prophecy, Tui T. Sutherland (Ages 8-12)Determined to end a generations-long war among the seven dragon tribes, a secret movement called the Talons of Peace draws on a prophecy that calls for a great sacrifice, compelling five appointed dragonets to fulfill a painful destiny against their will.

 The Graveyard Book, Neil Gaiman (Ages 9-12)
Nobody Owens is a normal boy, except that he has been raised by ghosts and other denizens of the graveyard.

Tom’s Midnight Garden, by Phillipa Pearce (Ages 9-12)
Tom finds himself in the midst of a strange adventure involving a garden that appears only at night and a girl from another time.

 Jedi Academy: Return of the Padawan, Jeffrey Brown (Ages 9-12)Roan Novachez enters his second year at Jedi Academy thinking it will be easy, but he couldn’t have been more wrong when faced with alien poetry tests, menacing robots, flight simulation class, online bullies, and a girl who is mad at him.

The Mennymns (series), Sylvia Waugh (Ages 9-12)
The Mennyms are a family of life sized rag dolls who live in a modest British town. Their forty year long secret threatens to be exposed when a distant relative of their landlord visits from Australia. “Good old-fashioned fantasy at its finest.”-Publishers Weekly

Redwall (series), Brian Jacques (Ages 9-12)
When the peaceful life of ancient Redwall Abbey is shattered by the arrival of the evil rat Cluny and his villainous hordes, Matthias, a young mouse, determines to find the legendary sword of Martin the Warrior which, he is convinced, will help Redwall’s inhabitants destroy the enemy.

Space Race, Sylvia Waugh (Ages 9-12)
When he learns that he and his father must soon leave Earth, eleven-year old Thomas Derwent is upset. But a terrible accident that separates the two of them makes Thomas’s situation much worse.


Completely Clementine, Sara Pennypacker (Ages 9-12)
Clementine faces changes at the end of her third grade year and anticipates the birth of her family’s new baby.

Escape from Mr. Lemonchello’s Library, Chris  Grabenstein, (Ages 9-12)Twelve-year-old Kyle gets to stay overnight in the new town library, designed by his hero (the famous gamemaker Luigi Lemoncello), with other students but finds that come morning he must work with friends to solve puzzles in order to escape.

The Fourteenth Goldfish, Jennifer L. Holm (Ages 9-12)
Ellie’s scientist grandfather has discovered a way to reverse aging, and consequently has turned into a teenager–which makes for complicated relationships when he moves in with Ellie and her mother, his daughter.

Fly Guy# 14: Fly Guy’s Amazing Tricks, Tedd Arnold (Ages 4-8)
In the latest installment of Tedd Arnold’s NEW YORK TIMES bestselling Fly Guy series, Fly Guy puts on a show with all the new tricks that Buzz taught him. But when Fly Guy shows off The Backstroke, The Dizzy Doozie, and The Big Booger at dinner-time, Buzz tells Fly Guy only to do the tricks on command. The tricks come in handy when an annoying kid starts picking on Buzz and Fly Guy–and by the time Fly Guy pulls off The Big Booger, he runs away.

Game Over, Pete Watson, Joe Screiber (Ages 9-12)
When videogame obsessed Pete Watson discovers his dad is not only a super-spy but has been kidnapped and is now trapped inside a video game, he has to use his super gaming skills and enter the game to rescue him. And if he succeeds, who will save Pete from his massive crush on Callie Midwood?

House of Robot,  James Patterson (Ages 8-12)
Fifth-grader Sammy Hayes-Rodriguez struggles to fit in when his inventor mother requires him to take her latest creation, a robotic ‘brother,’ to school with him to learn to become a student.

 Nightmares! ,  Jason Segel (Ages 8-12)
Twelve-year-old Charlie and his friends must stop nightmares from taking over their town before it’s too late.

The Scandalous Sisterhood of Prickwillows Place, Julie Berry (Ages 9-14)
In this Victorian boarding school murder mystery, seven young women find themselves gloriously free from adult supervision when their judgmental, penny-pinching headmistress and her good-for-nothing brother die suddenly during dinner. Rather than alert the authorities and risk having the school shut down and all the students sent home, the girls decide to keep things under wraps and proceed as if the late headmistress and her brother were still alive.

The Trolls, Polly Horvath (Ages 9-12)
Eccentric Aunt Sally comes from Canada to babysit the Anderson children while their parents are on a trip to Paris and every night the bedtime story adds another piece to a very suspect family history.

Wonder, RJ Polacio (Ages 9-12)
Ten-year-old Auggie Pullman, who was born with extreme facial abnormalities and was not expected to survive, goes from being home-schooled to entering fifth grade at a private middle school in Manhattan, which entails enduring the taunting and fear of his classmates as he struggles to be seen as just another student.

The Young Man and the Sea, Rodman Philbrick (Ages 9 – up)
After his mother’s death, twelve-year-old Skiff Beaman decides that it is up to him to earn money to take care of himself and his father, so he undertakes a dangerous trip alone out on the ocean off the coast of Maine to try to catch a Bluefin tuna.

Graphic Novels

The Sons of Liberty #1 , Alexander Lagos (Ages 9 – up)
The American Revolution might have gone down differently with a few superheroes thrown in — especially if those heroes happened to be runaway slaves. This fast-paced adventure comic presents an alternative history in which slaves Brody and Graham, fleeing their cruel master, go in search of (real-life) abolitionist and radical Quaker Benjamin Lay but are instead intercepted by Benjamin Franklin’s maniacal son, William. William performs electrical experiments on Graham and Brody that result in their acquisition of super-human strength, speed, and mental acuity. So watch out, Redcoats and slave hunters — the sons of liberty are coming.

 One Dead Spy, (Series: Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales) Nathan Hale (Ages 9-12)
Nathan Hale, the author’s historical namesake, was America’s first spy, a Revolutionary War hero who famously said “I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country” before being hanged by the British. In the Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales series, author Nathan Hale channels his namesake to present history’s roughest, toughest, and craziest stories in the graphic novel format.

 The Lost Boy, Greg Ruth (Ages 9-12)
When Nate finds a tape recorder and note addressed to him in his new home, he is thrust into a dark mystery about a boy who went missing long ago, and must team with local girl Tabitha to uncover the truth.

 Zita the Spacegirl,  (Series) Ben Hatke (Ages 9-12)
When young Zita discovers a device that opens a portal to another place, and her best friend is abducted, she is compelled to set out on a strange journey from star to star in order to get back home.

 A Bag of Marbles, Kris (Ages 10 – up)
In 1941, ten-year-old Joseph Joffo and his older brother, Maurice, must hide their Jewish heritage and undertake a long and dangerous journey from Nazi-occupied Paris to reach their other brothers in the free zone.

 The Red Wing TP,  Jonathan Hickman (Ages 10- up)
To stay alive in the future, the best fighter pilots in the world not only have to perfect their skills and master their aircraft, they also have to know how to travel through time! Collecting the acclaimed mini-series brought to you by award winning writer Jonathan Hickman and possibly the best new talent of the year, Nick Pitarra, The Red Wing is the story of the greatest battle in the history of three worlds.

 Man of Steel the Early Years, Frank Whitman (Ages 8-12)
Featuring characters from the action-packed new movie, the Junior Novel tells the story of Clark Kent as he learns he is not the biological son of a Kansas couple from a town called Smallville. Clark is actually from the planet Krypton. As Clark slowly learns about his amazing powers and uncovers truth of where he came from, he begins to accept that it is his destiny to be Superman.

My near death adventures, Alison DeCamp (Ages 8-12)
In 1895, twelve-year-old Stan decides to find his long-lost father in the logging camps of Michigan, documenting in his scrapbook his travels and encounters with troublesome relatives, his mother’s suitors, lumberjacks, and more.

Ick Yuck Eew! Lois Miner Huey (Ages 9-12)
What was life really like in early America? Readers are transported back to the 1700s for a bird’s-eye view. On the first page, they “land” in a city in June 1770. As they stroll around, they learn that conditions were not glamorous. The full-color art is a mixture of photographs and reproductions and serves to convince children about the realities of life in the early years of America. This enlightening book would be helpful for research and will attract browsers, although not everyone will appreciate its grossness.

Iron Thunder, Avi (Ages 9-12)
After his father is killed during the Civil War, thirteen-year-old Tom takes on a job to at the ironworks to support his family, and finds himself a target of ruthless spies when he begins assisting with the ironclad ship the “Monitor.”

Soldier Dog, Sam Angus (Ages 9-12)
Follows the World War I experiences of Stanley, who upon joining the war effort to escape his father is assigned to the experimental War Dog School, where he trains a Great Dane with whom he attempts to find his missing soldier brother.

The Watsons Go To Birmingham, Christopher Paul Curtis (Ages 9-12)The ordinary interactions and everyday routines of the Watsons, an African American family living in Flint, Michigan, are drastically changed after they go to visit Grandma in Alabama in the summer of 1963.


Bugged: how insects changed history, Sarah Albee (Ages 8-12)Chronicles the rivalry between the human and insect worlds that draws on myriad disciplines to explain the varying roles that bugs have played in building and toppling empires as well as the bug stories behind infamous disasters. Readers will get their share of gross-out moments as Albee pays attention to insect-borne diseases throughout time, such as malaria and the Black Death. Leighton’s cartoons of humans and bugs amp up the humor and temper some of the more serious topics; they’re joined by historical photos and illustrations. The breadth of information Albee covers speaks to the way that tugging on a tiny thread of history can yield a vast, multifaceted narrative.

 Chasing Cheetahs, Sy Montgomery (Ages 8-12)
Describes the cheetah’s essential role in the ecosystem and the ways in which Namibia’s Cheetah Conservation Fund is promoting cohabitation between cheetahs and farmers.

Eye to Eye: How Animals See the World , Steve Jenkins (Ages 0-8)Profiles a series of animals with unusual eyes and explains how such animals use their uniquely evolved eyes to gain essential information about the biological world.

 Creature Features, Steve Jenkins (Ages 0-8)
Examines unusual animal facial features and how they help the animals survive.

Moonbird, Phillip Hoose (Ages 9-12)
Documents the survival tale of an intrepid shorebird who has endured annual migrations between Argentina and the Canadian Arctic throughout the course of a long lifetime while his species continues to decline.

Weird but True: 300 Outrageous Facts -6National Geographic Children’s (Ages 9-12)
Offers a collection of true facts about animals, food, science, pop culture, outer space, geography, and weather.

Picture Books

Baby Got the Blues, Carol Diggery Shields (Ages 0-8)
An ode to babyhood, inspired by the blues artistry of B.B. King, illuminates the woes of being unable to walk, talk, or chew in a world of soggy diapers, mushy meals, and sleeping behind bars.

Bear Has a Story to Tell, Philip Stead (Age 0-8)
Bear, with the help of his animal friends, remembers the story he had hoped to tell before the onset of winter.

The Book With No Pictures, B.J. Novak (Ages 0-8)
In this book with no pictures, the reader has to say every silly word, no matter what!

Dog in Charge, KL Goingm (Ages 0-8)
When his human family goes to the store, Dog is left in charge of five wiley cats.

Extra Yarn, Mac Bennett (Ages 0-8)
With a supply of yarn that never runs out, Annabelle knits for everyone and everything in town until an evil archduke decides he wants the yarn for himself.

The Mouse Mansion, Karina Schaapman (Ages 0-8)
Best friends Sam and Julia love spending their days exploring the many rooms and secret hiding places of the Mouse Mansion, where they live with their families.

The Pigeon Needs a Bath, Mo Willems (Ages 0-8)
The Pigeon is dirty and he needs a bath, but he won’t go willingly!

Pirates Love Underpants, Claire Freedman (Ages 0-8)
A ship full of underpants-loving pirates goes on a quest for the fabled Pants of Gold.

Stick and Stone, Beth Ferry (Ages 0-8)
When Stick rescues Stone from a prickly situation with a Pinecone, the pair becomes fast friends. But when Stick gets stuck, can Stone return the favor?

Ten Rules of Being a Superhero, Deb Pilut (Ages 0-8)
An instruction manual for aspiring superheroes that follows the adventures of action-figure Captain Magma and his sidekick/owner Lava Boy as they outsmart a villainous dinosaur, evade a bee, and save a worm from certain destruction.

Waiting is not Easy, Mo Willems (Ages 0-8)
Piggie tells Gerald she has a surprise for him, but it is not there yet, so Gerald must be patient.

Weasels, Elys Dolan (Ages 0-8)
When a group of weasels plot to take over the world, they encounter some technical difficulties.

 Wolfie the Bunny, Ame Dyckman (Ages 0-8)
When her parents find a baby wolf on their doorstep and decide to raise him as their own, Dot is certain he will eat them all up until a surprising encounter with a bear brings them closer together.


Death of the Hat, ed. Paul Janeczko (Ages 9-12)
Presents a collection of poems inspired by earthly and celestial objects to reveal how poetry has been an enduring artistic form that reflects the historical periods of its writers.

Voices from the March on Washington, J. Patrick Lewis (Ages 9-12)
A collection of poems inspired by the 1963 March on Washington weaves together the voices of multiple witnesses, from a woman singing through a terrifying bus ride to a teen who marched because he was ordered to stay away.

Winter Bees & Other Poems of the Cold, Joyce Sidman (Ages 0-8)
Celebrates the animals who hibernate and survive in the cold during the winter months.

Hi Koo; a year of seasons, Koo and Jon Muth (Ages 0-8)
Presents a celebration of the four seasons that complements thematic scenes featuring the panda bear, Koo, with twenty-six haikus.

 The annotations for these titles were taken from Novelist K-8, and/or  The age classifications are meant to provide guidance, but should not limit the reader – just have fun and read!



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