In Other Lands

A Donkey Reads: Adapted from a Turkish Folktale

Author: 
Muriel Mandell
Illustrator: 
André Letria

Reading Level: Grades 3 - 5

When an evil Mongol invader demands tribute from everyone in a small Turkish town one family can only offer an old donkey. Nasreddin Hoca saves the day by promising to teach the donkey to read in one month. How is that possible?

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A Monster Calls: Inspired from an Idea by Siobhan Dowd

Author: 
Patrick Ness
Illustrator: 
Jim Kay

Grades 5+

Have you ever read a book that made you cry?  Ever read a book that, once you were finished, you just sat with and held for a while, letting the words sink into you, not wanting to have finished it?  Ever read a book that you couldn't stop thinking about after you finished?  Ever read a book that was so true and real you experienced the whole thing in your mind as you read?  This is one of those books.

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Trapped: How the World Rescued 33 Miners from 2,000 Feet Below the Chilean Desert

Author: 
Marc Aronson

Grades 4+

In August of 2010, a Chilean mine collapsed suddenly, trapping thirty-three men in the dark mine over a mile beneath the earth with limited supplies. After the collapse, the men were able to get to a shelter point, but had no way to communicate with the ground above.  All routes to the surface were blocked by the accident.

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Whiteblack the Penguin Sees the World

Author: 
Margaret & H.A. Rey

Reading Level: Ages 4-9

Whiteblack the penguin is running out of stories to tell on his radio show - not a good thing to happen to the Chief Storyteller of Penguinland. Waving goodbye to his friends, Whiteblack sets off in a little boat, in search of new stories. His journey is fraught with mishaps and misadventures, and doesn't quite go as Whiteblack had planned - but the plucky little radio star takes it all in stride, planning to use everything as a new story!

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Akata Witch

Author: 
Nnedi Okorafor-Mbachu

Reading Level: Grade 6-8

Sunny felt out of place when she and her family lived in the United States, she stands out even more in Nigeria. It isn't fair. She's 100% Igbo just like her parents and brothers, but Sunny is an albino so instead of having beautiful dark skin, hair and eyes, Sunny is so light her skin and hair look yellow.

When Sunny sees a strange vision in a candle's flame, she doesn't tell anyone. She's strange enough as it is. When Sunny is befriended by a classmate, she finds herself drawn into the very strangeness she is trying to avoid.

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The Last Little Blue Envelope

Author: 
Maureen Johnson

Reading Level: Grades 8+

When 17-year-old Ginny's eccentric aunt died she sent her niece $1,000 and some numbered envelopes  with the instruction that Ginny fly to Europe by herself and follow the directions in the envelopes, never opening the next envelope until the tasks in the previous envelope were completed.

WARNING: If you have not read 13 Little Blue Envelopes read no more!

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Dogtag Summer

Author: 
Elizabeth Partridge

Reading Level: Grades 5-7

11-year-old Tracy has been in America for six years. She doesn't remember much about her years in Vietnam. Not until she and her friend Stargazer discover her father's old ammo box in the garage. Stargazer breaks off the lock and opens the box. Her father finds them just as they pull out the military dogtag. His cold, hard anger sends Stargazer running for home.

During that steamy summer of 1980, powerful memories come back to haunt both Tracy and her father, memories that may force them apart forever.

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The Voyages of Dr. Dolittle

Author: 
Hugh Lofting

Reading Level: K-5

The second book in the wonderfully adventrous Dolittle series starts off by introducing us to Tommy Stubbins, future naturalist. To sate his curiosity about animals and their nature, Tommy asks Dr. Dolittle to apprentice him and teach him all he knows about animals and their languages - and so Dolittle, Stubbins and a few old friends set sail, hoping to learn the language of the Shellfish.

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