Books for Boys

Wanderville

Author: 
Wendy McClure

Reading Level: Grades 4 - 6

In 1904, 11-year-old Frances and her younger brother Harold are sent on an orphan train heading to Kansas from New York.  On the train they meet Jack, whose family could not afford to keep him.  When they hear rumors about horrible conditions that await them in Kansas, the three children jump the train.  They meet up with Alexander, a boy who has escaped from a work farm and set up his own "kids-only" town called Wanderville.  There they find happiness until the unthinkable happens. 

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The Great Trouble: a Mystery of London, the Blue Death, and a Boy Called Eel

Author: 
Deborah Hopkinson

Reading Level: Ages 9 - 12

In 1854 there was a cholera outbreak in London. Hundreds died. There was no cure and no one knew the cause of cholera.   Hopkinson 's hero is a thirteen-year-old orphan, Eel,  who scavenges the filthy Thames River and works odd jobs.  One job brings him in contact with Dr. Snow, a real historical figure who was an early epidemiologist.  The fast-paced novel combines a medical mystery, a race against the clock, evil child snatchers, and an assortment of characters.  You'll love Eel and his friends and want to them to triumph.

 

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Stick Dog Wants a Hot Dog

Author: 
Tom Watson

Reading Level: Grades 3 - 7

Stick Dog is at it again!   This time Stick Dog and friends are determined to help themselves to the hot dogs in the frankfurther cart, but they have competition from a  gang of hungry racoons.  The friends devise various ridiculous schemes to steal the hot dogs that test practical Stick dog's patience.  Then there's an added problem when Karen, the dachshund, gets trapped in a human's house.  Once again, readers will love the the many funny "bad" drawings of Tom Watson.

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Hank Finds an Egg

Author: 
Rebecca Dudley

Reading Level: Prek -  PreK - Grade 2

In this stunning, wordless picture book, Hank, a cute stuffed animal (perhaps a bear or a monkey) finds an egg that has fallen from its nest.  After several unsuccessful attempts to reach the nest, Hank cares for the egg at his campsite.  With the help of mother hummingbird, there's a happy ending for all.  Dudley built wonderfully detailed dioramas from paper, clay, fabric etc. and then photographed them.  She created a world readers will want to visit again and again.

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Bedtime Monsters

Author: 
Josh Schneider

Reading Level: PreK - Grade 3

Josh Schneider hits the mark again as he reinvents the classic monster under the bed tale.  Arnold is your average boy.  He trashes an imaginery Fifth Avenue and bites off the heads of animal crackers.  But Arnold doesn't want to go to bed for fear of bedtime monsters.  Sure enough, they appear one by one.  Some very silly monsters jump into bed with Arnold since it turns out that they are afraid other monsters.   Readers will laugh aloud at the imaginative illustrations and love the surprise ending!

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Rump: The Story of Rumpelstiltskin

Author: 
Liesl Shurtliff

Reading Level: Grades 3 - 7

This is Rumpelstilton as never before.  Instead of the nasty, baby stealing gnome, Rump is a young boy, small for his age, malnourished, and picked on by village bullies. His mother died when he was born and the last thing she uttered was his name.  In a kingdom where your name is your fate, how much worse could it get than to be named Rump?  But is it his full name?

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