Kid Reads New Book Reviews

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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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Class Dismissed

Author: 
Allan Woodrow

Reading Level: Grades 3 - 5

Ms. Bryce has had it with Class 507. One day she calls the office and screams into the phone that she is retiring, effectively immediately; then hangs up.  The catch is that no adults were in the office when she called.  The phone was answered by a boy from Class 507 who had been sent to the office to see the principal.  Now only the students in class 507 know they are without and teacher and they mean to keep it that way.

Meet author Allan Woodrow at the library on January 9th.

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Green Thumbs Up!

Author: 
Jenny Meyerhoff

Reading Level: Grades 2 - 5

In the first book in The Friendship Garden series, third grader Anna Fincher has just moved to Chicago and she's not very happy about it.  Her mother, the chef, is busy with a new important job, Chicago looks gray and drab to Anna, and worst of all, she left behind her best friends and doesn't know anyone.  Things begin to change when a group assignment brings her together with Kaya and Reed.  Can they convince other kids to help them with a plot in the community garden?  Will they even ever have a plot of their own is they can't find a supervising adult?Will the Friendship Garden lead to real friendships?  Thumbs up for delightful book complemented by black and white illustrations, gardening tips, and a zucchini fritter recipe.

Meet author Jenny Meyerhoff at the library on January 9th.

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The Copper Gauntlet

Author: 
Holly Black
Cassandra Clare

Reading Level: Grades 4-6

Despite his best attempts NOT to attend the Magisterium, Callum has managed to complete his first year and acquire a pet, Havoc a Chaos-ridden wolf.  Call tries to enjoy his summer at home with his father but finds it difficult because 1) His father hates the Magisterium; 2) His father despises Havoc and 3) His father seems to be afraid of Call.  When Call uncovers his father's plan to kill both Call and Havoc, Call flees back to the Magisterium.  He isn't happy or safe there either because Call knows a secret about himself.  A secret that will probably end in the death of Call or his best friend.

Be sure to read book #1 in the Magisterium series The Iron Trial.

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Stories set in schools of magic include:

Witch Week by Diana Wynne Jones

The Hound of Rowan by Henry Neff

Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins and

Midnight for Charlie Bone by Jenny Nimmo

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Escape to the World's Fair

Author: 
Wendy McClure

Reading Level: Grades 3 - 7

The orphans are on the run again in this third book of the Wanderville series.  Their dream is to make a permanent, safe home in California, but how will they get there?  Fortune brings them a chance to earn a huge reward that would finance their journey if they can deliver a strange medallion to someone at the 1904 World's Fair in St.Louis.  Can they make the trip without being found by the evil Miss DeHaven from the Children's Aid Society?  Will everyone stay together in the new "family" they have found?  Who can they trust?  McClure has written another fast paced page turner.

Meet author Wendy McClure at the library on January 9th.

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The Tournament at Gorlan

Author: 
John Flanagan

Reading Level: Grades  5-8

Attention Ranger's Apprentice fans!  Adventures in the Kingdom of Araluen are back with this first volume of the Early Years prequel series which trace the adventures of two young rangers, Halt and Crowley, during one of the most dangerous times in the Kingdom of Araluen.   Brilliant, lethal Baron Morgarath  has isolated King Oswald and discredited the crown prince.  As part of his plan Morgarath has corrupted the King's staunchest allies, the Ranger corps. Determined to save the kingdom Crowley and Halt embark on a desperate race to find and recruit the scattered loyal Rangers before it is too late.

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Other books for action-lovers include:

The Merchant of Death by D. J. MacHale

The Warrior Heir by Cinda Williams Chima

Eon: Dragoneye Reborn by Alison Goodman and

Fall of a Kingdom by Hilari Bell

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Cakes in Space

Author: 
Philip Reeve
Sarah McIntyre

Reading Level: Grades 2-5

Astra and her family are migrating to Nova Mundi.  The trip will take 199 years.  But Astra won't see any scenery because all the humans will be put in a deep, deep frozen sleep until the ship reaches their new home.  Everything WOULD have gone as planned if Astra hadn't slipped off to the dining hall and asked the Num-O-Tron to make a cake that "is so delicious it is scary."  Astra doesn't get her cake because the Num-O-Tron is still computing when she is put in her pod.  When she wakes up she discovers the ship is infested with giant, ferocious cupcakes.  Worse Pibeam, a friendly robot, tells her there are still ninety-nine years left before anyone else wakes up.  Can Astra evade the sharp toothed cupcakes long enough to save the ship??

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If you liked this wacky science fiction tale try:

Can of Worms by Kathy Mackel

Archie Takes Flight by Wendy Mass

Space Rocks! by Tom O'Donnell and

Escape from Planet Yastol by Pamela Service

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Summer Showers

Author: 
Kate Hannigan

Reading level: Grades 3 - 4

The entire Bumpus family is together again for their annual summer vacation.  Cousins Delia and Willow are determined to carry on as chefs despite Willow's broken hand.  There's lots to do.  They hope to drum up business for the new Arts and Eats cafe with a winning entry at the county fair.  They also plan to cater Aunt Rosie's baby shower and Delia really hopes she'll be able to find the heirloom ring that grandma gave her.  Could it have fallen into some batter?  The second entry in the Cupcake Cousins series has new Kate Hannigan tested recipes.  Readers will relish this lively, sweet celebration of family.

Meet author Kate Hannigan at the library on January 9th.

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Archie the Daredevil Penguin

Author: 
Andy Rash

Reading Level: Grades PreK - 3

All the other penguins know that Archie is fearless.  He has climbed to the summit of Nosebleed Mountain among other exploits.  But he's hiding a secret; he's afraid to swim and doesn't know how he'll get to Iceberg Nine for the fish fry.  After various attempts to fly there, Archie learns to overcome his fear of the ocean and the creatures that live there.  Rash's hilarious illustrations with sound bubbles will have you clapping for Archie along with his penguin friends!

Meet author/illustrator Andy Rash at the library on January 9th.

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