Category Archives: Staff Picks

Staff Pick: Fly Away

Staff Pick: Fly Away

Fly Away

While in North Dakota helping her Aunt Frankie prepare for a possible flood, Lucy finds her voice as a poet with the help of her two-year-old brother Teddy, the rest of their family, and a few cows.

Can you keep a secret? Fly Away by Patricia MacLachlan is a story about secrets, bravery, and family. Lucy adores her family, but especially her father and little brother Teddy. Lucy can’t sing, but she can write poems. Her father is a poet and a farmer who believes no one can write a poem as beautiful as a cow.  When Lucy’s family sets out to help Aunt Frankie on her farm danger awaits and secrets come out. Will this family come out stronger or will they fall apart? Can Lucy write a poem more beautiful as beautiful as a cow?

Recommended by: Kamara McKinney – Spades Park Branch

 

 

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Staff Pick: Junie B., first grader: aloha-ha-ha!

Staff Pick: Junie B., first grader: aloha-ha-ha!

Junie B., first grader: aloha-ha-ha!

Excitable Junie B. Jones manages to find trouble both before and during a trip to Hawaii and records each incident in a photo journal given to her by her teacher.

Join in the adventures of a precocious and very active six year old girl, Junie B. Jones, as she spends her vacation in Hawaii. Junie kept me laughing as I followed her on her first airplane ride, her first, but scary, scuba diving escapade, and her encounter with a small bird entangling himself in her hair during a nature walk.

Barbara Park has cleverly developed the character of Junie B. Jones in a way that appeals to both children and adults.

Recommended by: Barbara Crim – Southport Branch

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Staff Pick: Ox, House, Stick the History of Our Alphabet

Staff Pick: Ox, House, Stick the History of Our Alphabet

Ox, House Stick

Presents the origins of each letter of the English alphabet, from the pictorial drawings of the ancient Egyptians, through the changes to script by trading Phoenicians to the final classical letters of the Greeks and Romans.

Think alphabet books are just for little kids learning their ABCs?  This one will change your mind.  History, art, linguistics and symbology combine to appeal to kindergarteners through adults.  See a picture of an ox evolve into our letter “A”, and “dagger” change to our letter “Z” as our alphabet is born in Egypt and travels around the Middle East to Rome.   Scientists are still trying to figure out what much of ancient language sounded like and meant.  Maybe you will be one of them!

Recommended by: Daniell Wilkins – College Avenue Branch

 

 

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Staff Pick: The Secret Tree

Staff Pick: The Secret Tree

The Secret Tree

After sixth grader Minty discovers a secret tree with a hollow trunk that holds the secrets of everyone in the neighborhood, Raymond, a new boy drawn to the tree and Minty start watching their neighbors.

Do you have a secret? The summer before Minty Mortimer starts middle school, she comes across a mysterious tree in the woods.  She discovers that people have been placing their secrets in its hollowed out trunk and soon learns that most of her friends and family have been keeping secrets.  One secret reads “I put a curse on my enemy. And it’s working.” Another says, “I’m betraying my best friend in a terrible way.” Minty and her new friend Raymond are determined to solve the mysteries of these secrets, but they have to do some sneaking and snooping of their own to do this.  Will they be able to help their neighborhood before the secrets tear apart friends and even family?  And what will Minty do when she finds out that Raymond may have the biggest secret of anyone? Read The Secret Tree to find out.

Recommended by: Robyn B. Lawrence branch

 

 

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Staff Pick: Seeing the Elephant, a Story of the Civil War

Staff Pick: Seeing the Elephant, a Story of the Civil War

Seeing the Elephant

Ten-year-old Izzie wants to join the war like his older brothers and go into battle against the Confederate Army, but when he meets a Rebel soldier in a hospital, he begins to see things differently.

Being a kid is hard, but being a kid during wartime is harder. Take a journey with Izzie and his family during the Civil War in Seeing the Elephant: a story of the Civil War. When Izzie’s two older brothers, Cal and Ario, go off to fight for the Union Izzie wishes he could join them. What Izzie does not realize is that war is not fun.  When Cal returns home he is a different person and Izzie cannot understand why. However, Izzie soon learns what war is really about when he takes a trip with his aunt to a Union hospital. Will Izzie be able to handle the truth about war?

Submitted by: Kamara McKinney, Spades Park Library

 

 

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