Category Archives: Staff Picks

Staff Pick: The Trouble With Chickens

Staff Pick: The Trouble With Chickens

The Trouble with Chickens

A hard-bitten former search-and-rescue dog helps solve a complicated missing chicken case. Young Hoosier Book Award, 2014-2015, 4-6 Nominee.

The Trouble with Chickens by Doreen Cronin is a great chapter book for third and fourth graders.  The main character is retired search and rescue dog Johnathan Joseph Tully, J.J. for short.  Two chicks, Dirt and Sugar along with their mother ask J.J for his help in finding their missing siblings.  This search takes them on an adventure where they come across some interesting characters including Vince the Funnel.  Readers must read this first title in the J.J. Tully Mystery series to find out if J.J. the search and rescue dog is successful in locating the missing chicks.

Recommended By: Denyce Malone – Flanner House Library

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Staff Pick: Anna & Solomon

Staff Pick: Anna & Solomon

Based on the story of the author’s grandparents’ migration to the United States from late-nineteenth-century Russia, Anna and Solomon shares how Solomon moved to the U.S. first, where he worked to save money for Anna to join him.

Solomon and his new wife, Anna, live happily in a small village in Russia.  However, soldiers sent by the Czar make life very difficult for them, and they decide to try and find a better life in America.  Having only enough for one of them to go, Solomon leaves Anna behind with her family and moves to New York City.  He finds work as a painter, and soon has enough money to send for Anna. But it’s not Anna who steps off the gangplank. This is a wonderful story about love, family, and starting a new life!

Recommended By: Beth Pintal – Nora Branch

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Staff Pick: City of Fire

Staff Pick: City of Fire

City of Fire

Twelve-year-old Scirye and her companions travel to Houlani, a new Hawaiian island created by magic, where they enlist the help of volcano goddess Pele in an attempt to stop an evil dragon and a mysterious man from altering the universe.

Scirye’s sister died preventing the theft of a great treasure. Now Scirye must go after the thieves, Mr. Roland and the evil dragon, Badik, to recover the treasure and avenge her sister’s death. Her companions are Bayang- a dragon, Leech- a boy with mysterious powers, and the secretive Koko. Together they find the thieves on a magical new Hawaiian island, and meet the volcano goddess Pele. This is the first book in the City trilogy.

Recommended by: Karen Perry – Franklin Road

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Staff Pick: Jumping Penguins

Staff Pick: Jumping Penguins

Jumping Penguins

Funny, bizarre, unbelievable, and weird facts about twenty five different animals. The animal facts are straightforward nonfiction, Marije Tolman’s illustrations are pure fantasy.

Did you know that some caterpillars can (and do) throw their poop twelve inches? That’s like your Uncle Jim throwing his poop halfway down a football field. Let’s hope your uncle can’t do that. Most uncles wouldn’t. Hopefully. Anyway, Jumping Penguins tells strange, and occasionally gross, facts about animals you know and love. The words are all true – the beautiful and whimsical illustrations are not. This is not a school-year book you could use for serious research. No, this is a summer book, and the aim of its’ creators seems to be just to amaze and amuse.

Recommended by: Shellie Rich – Warren

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Staff Pick: The Screaming Staircase

Staff Pick: The Screaming Staircase

The Screaming Staircase

Follows three young operatives of a Psychic Detection Agency as they battle an epidemic of ghosts in London.

Could you spend the night in a haunted house? London, England has a problem – unfriendly ghosts come out at night – and only kids have the psychic ability to see and get rid of them. Lucy Carlyle joins the only “ghost-busting” business run by another kid: Anthony Lockwood. With their third partner, George, they take on the biggest case in town. Will they solve the case and get the money, or will the Screaming Staircase get them?

Recommended by: Melissa Wooten – Glendale

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