Self Image

Bluefish

Author: 
Pat Schmatz

Grades 5+

You probably learned to read in kindergarten or first grade, maybe even sooner. Maybe it's a little hard for you, maybe it got easier as you read more and more, maybe you can't stop reading. 

But you did learn to read - good at it or not, loving it or not.

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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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Jefferson's Sons

Author: 
Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

Grades 5-9
Third U.S. President Thomas Jefferson lived at the plantation Monticello and kept slaves to work in his fields, farm and home. One of his slaves was a woman named Sally Hemings, mother to four of Jefferson's children - Beverly, Harriet, Maddy, and Eston.  Though slaves, the children and their mother were given special treatment by Jefferson because of his discreet relationship to them - but nevertheless, slaves they remained. 

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Okay For Now

Author: 
Gary D. Schmidt

Reading Level: Grades 6+

Doug Swieteck and his lousy older brother just moved to a brand-new town that will be probably just as lousy as the old one - and with less baseball. And, just like in his old town, everyone who's anyone (teachers, the police, his dad, Lil Spicer down the street) thinks that Doug's just a skinny good-for-nothing kid who won't ever amount to anything except for trouble.

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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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Notes from a Totally Lame Vampire: Because the Undead Have Feelings Too!

Author: 
Tim Collins
Illustrator: 
Andrew Pinder

Reading Level: Grades 6 - 8

Nigel is about to turn 100 and he has yet to have a girlfriend. His problem is that, although he is a vampire, he does not have super strength, preternatural speed, or hypnotizing beauty. In fact he is weaker and slower than most of his classmates, and sunlight gives him a bad case of acne. In short, he is forever trapped in the body of a geeky 15 year old boy. How will he ever be able to impress the beautiful new girl and maybe, someday, get to bite someone?

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Pink

Author: 
Lili Wilkinson

Reading Level: Grades 7+

What does pink mean to you? Does it mean a little girl’s bedroom, wallpapered with ponies, princesses, ballerinas and unicorns? A color occasionally featured in your wardrobe? A bonafide, lip-glossed, perfect 'Plastic' a la Mean Girls? Or is pink a color you hate with every dark black fiber of your being?

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Hothouse

Author: 
Chris Lynch

Reading Level: Grade 8+

Russell was named for DJ's father. DJ was named for Russell's. Their dads were neighbors, best friends and coworkers. Both were firemen. They did everything together...including dying in the same fire.

When their small town hails both men as heroes, both their sons and widows are expected to attend function after function honoring the men. Although Russell is intensely proud of his father, he and DJ both wish the attention would end.

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