6th Grade

On the Day I Died: Stories from the Grave

Author: 
Candace Fleming

Reading Level: Grades 5 - 8

Driving at break-neck speed past a Cook County Forest Preserve after midnight, late for curfew again, Mike nearly hits a girl who is standing in the middle of the road. His decision to give the hapless hitchhiker a ride home turns into a night spent sitting in a graveyard listening to the ghosts of Chicago area teenagers as tell him the stories of their lives, and deaths.

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Vodník

Author: 
Bryce Moore

Reading Level: Grades 5 - 8

After Tomas' house burns down, his family moves back to Slovakia where they had lived until Tomas was five and where he had nearly died. Soon after his arrival in his mother's home town he begins to have strange encounters with Slovakian legendary characters. Everyone, from Death herself to a crazy water vampire, known as a vodnik, seems to remember him and want something from him.

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Last Airlift: A Vietnamese Orphan's Rescue from War

Author: 
Marsha Forechuk Skrypuch

Reading Level:  Grades  3-6

This is the true story of Tuyet,  an eight -year- old orphan who didn't remember her life before the Saigon orphanage.  There were the scars that she thought might have been from the war that still raged on, but she couldn't remember  When Saigon fell, she was one of 57 babies and children evacuated to Canada during "Operation Babylift." 

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The One and Only Ivan

Author: 
Katherine Applegate
Illustrator: 
Patricia Castelao

Grades 4+

Ivan (The Ape at Exit 8) is a downtrodden, has-been silverback gorilla living in a small, unkept domain within a shopping mall, occasionally accompanied by Bob, a stray dog who sneaks into Ivan's domain through a hole in the glass.

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Mister Death's Blue-Eyed Girls

Author: 
Mary Downing Hahn

Reading Level: Ages 12 and up

Combining murder mystery, historical fiction, and a coming-of-age story, this chilling book is base on real life events in the author's past.  The time is 1956 and Nora anticipates spending a the summer  before her senior year with her group of friends.  But two of her friends are shot to death on their way to the last day of school.  Everyone but Nora is sure that the murderer is a jealous ex-boyfriend. Told from a number of perspectives, the story examines the effect this horrible event had on so many lives.

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Buried Alive! How 33 Miners Survived 69 Days Deep Under the Chilean Desert

Author: 
Elaine Scott

Reading Level: 5-8

Imagine that you are trapped way down in the earth in stifling heat with little light, air, food or water.  Imagine that for the first 17 days you don't even know if anyone is searching for you.  These are the personal stories of the trapped miners, their loved ones, and their rescuers.  Throughout the books are photos of the families, the rescue equipment, and amazing pictures of the men while they are trapped deep within the earth.

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Caddy's World

Author: 
Hilary McKay

Reading Level: Grades 4-6

Hilary McKay scores again in this prequel to the Casson Family series.  Before her struggles with A level exams and her adventures with "Michael Darling" the beleaguered driving instructor, Caddy Casson was a 12-year-old girl facing the loss and challenges of changing friendships.

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