Jill's Staff Picks:
Mustache Baby by Bridget Heos
When Baby Billy is born with a mustache, his family takes it in stride. They are reassured when he nobly saves the day in imaginary-play sessions as a cowboy or cop and his mustache looks good-guy great. But as time passes, their worst fears are confirmed when little Billy's mustache starts to curl up at the ends in a suspiciously villainous fashion. Sure enough, "Billy's disreputable mustache led him into a life of dreadful crime." Plenty of tongue-in-cheek humor and cartoonish illustrations make this the perfect baby-shower gift for a mustachioed father-to-be.
Tonight on the Titanic by Murdocca Sal
Jack and Annie are ready for their next fantasy adventure in the bestselling middle-grade series--the Magic Tree House! Titanic trouble! Jack and Annie are in for an exciting, scary, and sad adventure when the Magic Tree House whisks them back to the decks of the Titanic. Is there anything they can do to help the ill-fated ship? Will they be able to save anyone? Will they be able to save themselves?
Christy's Staff Pick:
Hope for the Flowers by Trina Paulus
Hope's theme of life, moving through seeming death to a new and more beautiful life, has touched the hearts of millions of people. Hope for the Flowers is for young and old, lovers, husbands and wives. It's a book to learn to read with, or to comfort those who are dying or grieving. In the tale, the caterpillar heroes, Stripe and Yellow, want something more from life than eating and growing bigger. They get caught up in a "caterpillar pillar," a squirming mass of bodies, each determined to reach a top so far away it can't be seen. Finally disillusioned, they discover that the way for the caterpillars to find their particular "more," who they really are, is to enter the cocoon and "...risk for the butterfly." Hope for the Flowers has helped people gain the courage to leave jobs, change their lives and explore their love for another human being.
Lisa's Staff Picks:
Red Book by Barbara Lehman
This book is about a book. A magical red book without any words. When you turn the pages you'll experience a new kind of adventure through the power of story.Winning a Caldecott Honor for itsÂ illustrations of rare detail and surprise, The Red Book crosses oceans and continents to deliver one girl into a new world of possibility, where a friend she's never met is waiting. And as with the best of books, at the conclusion of the story, the journey is not over.
Magyk by Angie Sage
Septimus Heap, the seventh son of the seventh son, disappears the night he is born, pronounced dead by the midwife. That same night, the baby's father, Silas Heap, comes across an abandoned child in the snow-a newborn girl with violet eyes. The Heaps take her into their home, name her Jenna, and raise her as their own. But who is this mysterious baby girl, and what really happened to their beloved son Septimus?.
Allison's Staff Picks:
The Horse Diaries-Elska by Catherine Hapka
Iceland, circa AD 1000 Elska is a silver dapple Icelandic filly. She spends summers frisking about the countryside and winters in the farmyard, where the girl human Amma takes special care of her. But when a powerful neighbor notices Elska, her contented life suddenly changes. Here is Elska's story . . . in her own words.
Jingle Dancer by Cynthia L. Smith
Jenna, a contemporary Muscogee (Creek) girl in Oklahoma, wants to honor a family tradition by jingle dancing at the next powwow. But where will she find enough jingles for her dress? An unusual, warm family story, beautifully evoked in Cornelius Van Wright and Ying-Hwa Hu's watercolor art.
Lori's Staff Pick:
How to talk so Kids will Listen by Adele Faber
You can stop fighting with your children! Here is the bestselling book that will give you the know-how you need to be more effective with your children—and more supportive of yourself. Enthusiastically praised by parents and professionals around the world, the down-to-earth, respectful approach of Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish makes relationships with children of all ages less stressful and more rewarding. Now, in this thirtieth-anniversary edition, these award-winning experts share their latest insights and suggestions based on feedback they’ve received over the years.
Chasing Vermer by Blue Balliett
When a book of unexplainable occurrences brings Petra Andalee and Calder Pillay together, strange things start to happen. Before they know it, the two find themselves at the center of an international art scandal. As Petra and Calder are drawn clue by clue into a mysterious labyrinth, they must draw on their powers of intuition, their skills at problem solving, and their knowledge of Vermeer. Can they decipher a crime that has left even the FBI baffled? This novel is full of Art, Geometric shapes and Mystery. Who was Vermeer? What are Pentominoes? Can you find the clues to the mystery in the illustrations? Petra and Calder must answer all these questions to solve the crime. I loved the art appreciation and math problems intertwined in a great mystery.< br/>
Tamar's Staff Pick:
The Hallo-Wiener by Dav Pilkey
Oscar is short, like all dachshunds and other dogs make fun of him. On Halloween he takes more ridicule than ever in his hot-dog costume, but one brave act makes him a hero.
The Shattering by Karen Healey
Seventeen-year-old Keri likes to plan for every possibility. She knows what to do if you break an arm, or get caught in an earthquake or fire. But she wasn't prepared for her brother's suicide, and his death has left her shattered with grief. When her childhood friend Janna tells her it was murder, not suicide, Keri wants to believe her. After all, Janna's brother died under similar circumstances years ago, and Janna insists a visiting tourist, Sione, who also lost a brother to apparent suicide that year, has helped her find some answers. As the three dig deeper, disturbing facts begin to pile up: one boy killed every year; all older brothers; all had spent New Year's Eve in the idyllic town of Summerton. But when their search for the serial killer takes an unexpected turn, suspicion is cast on those they trust the most. As secrets shatter around them, can they save the next victim? Or will they become victims themselves?
Faye's Staff Pick:
Stuck in the Mud by Jane Clarke
With colorful and expressive illustrations, this is the humorous tale of a little chick who gets, as the title suggests, stuck in the mud. Can the other animals pull him out? Children will enjoy the silly rhyming text and the surprise ending. This book is a must-read for the young and young at heart.
Christina's Staff Pick:
Adam and Eve and Pinch Me by Julie Johnston
Sara Moone is an expert on broken hearts. She is a foster child who has been bounced from home to home, but now that she's almost sixteen the end is in sight. Soon the system will let her go, and she dreams of finding a place that's cold and white where nobody can hurt her again. But there's one more placement in store for Sara. She is sent to live with the Huddleston's on their sheep farm. There, despite herself, Sara learns that there is no escape from the need to love and to be loved
The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lochhart
Frankie Landau-Banks at age 14: Debate Club. Her father’s “bunny rabbit.” A mildly geeky girl attending a highly competitive boarding school. Frankie Landau-Banks at age 15: A knockout figure. A sharp tongue. A chip on her shoulder. And a gorgeous new senior boyfriend: the supremely goofy, word-obsessed Matthew Livingston. Frankie Landau-Banks. No longer the kind of girl to take “no” for an answer. Especially when “no” means she’s excluded from her boyfriend’s all-male secret society. Not when her ex-boyfriend shows up in the strangest of places. Not when she knows she’s smarter than any of them. When she knows Matthew’s lying to her. And when there are so many, many pranks to be done. Frankie Landau-Banks, at age 16: Possibly a criminal mastermind. This is the story of how she got that way..
Lindsay's Staff Picks:
The Tale of the Firebird by Gennady Spirin
In all the world there is said to be nothing more beautiful than the Firebird. When Ivan-Tsarevitch, youngest son of the Tsar, goes on a quest for the amazing bird, he finds himself flying over mountains and woods on a talking wolf, confronting a wicked Baba Yaga, and rescuing an enchanted princess from Koshchei the Immortal. But when he returns from his magical journey, he brings home the most precious treasure of all. Gennady Spirin brings this original version of the Firebird tale from his native Russia and has illustrated it in his trademark rich, luminous style. This retelling of a classic is sure to become the new standard.
Anya's Ghost by Vera Brosgol
Anya could really use a friend. But her new BFF isn't kidding about the "Forever" part...Of all the things Anya expected to find at the bottom of an old well, a new friend was not one of them. Especially not a new friend who's been dead for a century.Falling down a well is bad enough, but Anya's normal life might actually be worse. She's embarrassed by her family, self-conscious about her body, and she's pretty much given up on fitting in at school. A new friend--even a ghost--is just what she needs.Or so she thinks. Spooky, sardonic, and secretly sincere, Anya's Ghost is a wonderfully entertaining debut from author/artist Vera Brosgol.
Katherine's Staff Pick
You Asked by Chickadee Magazine
Since 1976, when the first issue of OWL Magazine hit newsstands, curious kids have written to its editors with their most baffling questions. Why are feet so ticklish? Who got to name the planets? Can animals get sunburned? How do rubber bands stretch?You Asked? celebrates OWL Magazine's 35th birthday by collecting nearly 350 of the best questions submitted by years worth of OWL readers. Answers to these tough and intriguing questions are provided by OWL and chickaDEE's savvy editors and are guaranteed to fascinate, amaze, inform, and provide lots of fun.Complete with retro photographs and illustrations, this re-issue of a classic tackles subjects like science and technology, outer space, and plants and animals - because if one thing never changes, it's the fact that inquisitive kids (and stumped parents) have questions about the world around them.
Sous Les Etoiles by Mary Ray
Quand la première étoile apparaît, on sait qu'il fera bientôt nuit. Aussitôt qu'on en voit une, une autre se met à briller, puis une autre et une autre encore. Ainsi, la nuit ne semble pas aussi noire. Imagine que tu puisses attraper des étoiles...
Dave's Staff Pick:
Battle Bunny by Jon Scieszka
Encourage creativity with this wildly entertaining picture book mash-up from the minds of Jon Scieszka and Mac Barnett. Alex has been given a saccharine, sappy, silly-sweet picture book about Birthday Bunny that his grandma found at a garage sale. Alex isn't interested--until he decides to make the book something he'd actually like to read. So he takes out his pencil, sharpens his creativity, and totally transforms the story! Birthday Bunny becomes Battle Bunny, and the rabbit's innocent journey through the forest morphs into a supersecret mission to unleash an evil plan--a plan that only Alex can stop. Featuring layered, original artwork that emphasizes Alex's additions, this dynamic exploration of creative storytelling is sure to engage and inspire.