Biographies

Somewhere There is Still a Sun: A Memoir of the Holocaust

Author: 
Michael Gruenbaum
Todd Hasak-Lowy

Reading Level: Grades 4 - 8

This book was 70 years in the making.  It is the story of Michael Gruenbaum and his family, Jews who lived in Prague in 1939 when the Nazis marched in.  Written by gifted writer, Todd Hasak-Lowry, it chronicles life for 10- year-old Michael under the Nazis and the family's relocation to Terezin.  Told in the first person by a young Michael, it speaks volumes about courage, determination, and humanity.

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Becoming Maria: Love and Chaos in the South Bronx

Author: 
Sonia Manzano

Reading Level: Grades 8 and older

Sonia Manzano, otherwise known as Maria on Sesame Street, tells the story of her childhood in the Bronx. Detailing everything from her mysteriously appearing older sister, through her father's drunken rages, to her first roll on Broadway, Sonia's story is not for younger, or more sensitive readers.

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Tuesday Tucks Me In: The Loyal Bond Between a Soldier and His Service Dog

Author: 
Luis Carlos Montalván
Bret Witter
Illustrator: 
Dan Dion

Reading Level: Ages 3 -10

Tuesday the service dog describes a day in his life helping his disabled veteran handler.

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More books by Luis Carlos Montalván

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Elizabeth, Queen of the Seas

Author: 
Lynne Cox
Illustrator: 
Brian Floca

Reading Level: Grades K - 4

Elizabeth the elephant seal lived in a park in the middle of a busy city. The residents all loved her, but drivers did not because she had a tendency to take naps in the middle of the road. Eventually the government decided that Elizabeth needed to be relocated to an elephant seal colony well away from the city where she would be happy. However, Elizabeth had a different opinion about what would make her happy.

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The Warrior's Heart

Author: 
Eric Greitens

Reading Level: Grades 6 and up

What sort of person becomes a Rhodes Scholar (one of the most prestigious academic honors in the world) and then signs on to become a Navy SEAL?  Eric Greitens will take you on his journey that led him from refugee camps in Rwanda and Bosnia, the slums of Bolivia, the rigors of Navy SEAL training to the battlefields of Iraq and then home.  In this adaptation for teens of his best-selling novel you will meet an extraordinary person you will not soon forget.

 

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The Pregnancy Project: A Memoir

Author: 
Gaby Rodriguez with Jenna Glatzer

Reading Level: Grades 7 and up

Gaby's mother became pregnant with her first child at 14. All of Gaby's seven older brothers and sisters became teen parents as well, but Gaby, who was an unplanned, post-divorce child, is determined to not follow in her family's footsteps. When she needed to design her senior year research project she wondered, how would people react if a hardworking, determined student with a planned out future DID become a teen mother? Thus begins a six month long faked teen pregnancy and social experiment.

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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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Stay: The True Story of Ten Dogs

Author: 
Michaela Muntean
Illustrator: 
K.C. Bailey and Stephen Kazmierski

Reading Level: Grades 2 - 5

After he was seriously injured in a fall from a high wire, Luciano Anastasini needed to come up with a new circus act for himself. That is when five, unwanted "problem" dogs on death row in the pound (and later five more) came along and together they found what their purpose in life was meant to be.

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