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Kidsreads Newsletter for Parents

Late September

Kidsreads.com Newsletter for Parents September 2014
Apples, Pumpkins and Lickable (Yes, Lickable) Wallpaper

Hello!

I hope your kids (and by proxy, you) are having a good transition back to school and into the fall season! I know that it’s one of the most hectic times of year. Challenges include coaxing your kids to get out of bed, getting them out the door on time and possibly preparing school lunches (see this fun article on how to make this chore a lot more entertaining for both of you) and then coaching for homework/tests and the endless last-minute school and extracurricular requests. Whew! However, it also has some of the best activities, depending on where you live, like apple picking, corn mazes, trick-or-treating, and baking pumpkin-flavored everything.

A couple of weekends ago, The Samuel Mills Sprole School in Brooklyn, New York taught me that there was yet another great way to ring in autumn --- a literary-themed fair! This Roald Dahl-themed extravaganza --- dubbed “Dahl-O-Ween” --- sizzled with the creative, mischievous spirit of Roald Dahl in everything from the obstacle course (during which kids had to dig through buckets of ping pong balls for golden tickets) to the food table (where we were served pieces of Bruce Bogtrotter’s Chocolate Cake from MATILDA, lickable wallpaper and the BFG’s favorite drink, Frobscottle) to the costumes (which included a Giant Peach, a Fantastic Mr. Fox, a grizzly Ms. Trunchbull and a tiny Charlie with a messenger bag full of newspapers).

Dressed in all blue and wearing purple lipstick to represent the gum-loving, soon to be blueberry-resembling Violet Beauregarde, I helped run the trivia table. I was hugely impressed with the number of kids who remembered all four of Charlie’s grandparents’ names (quick: can you recite them?) and the flavor of grass growing in Willy Wonka’s factory (mint!). It was also incredibly fun to test my own knowledge of Roald Dahl (how many questions could I come up with off the top of my head for the kids who kept returning?) and to bond over my favorite children’s books with a new generation who was equally obsessed. (By the way, 2014 is the 50th anniversary of CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY, so this is the perfect time to introduce your kids to the story if they're unfamiliar --- there’s a new paperback collection of the whole series, an oversized edition of the book, an edition with the original Joseph Schindelman illustrations, and a sneak peek behind the scenes with INSIDE CHARLIE’S CHOCOLATE FACTORY by Roald Dahl’s daughter, Lucy Mangan).

This fair got me thinking, though, with a bit of creativity, you could make an awesome carnival out of any book. Do your kids love the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series? Invite your friends to play a demigod vs. monster game of capture the flag. Are they obsessed with Dork Diaries? Have a face-painting station inspired by Nikki Maxwell’s doodles or a writing game where each participant writes an entry to make a complete diary. Obsessed with A SNICKER OF MAGIC? Have an ice cream sundae bar full of cool toppings so people can make their own crazy flavors, just like Dr. Zook’s Ice Cream Factory in the book. The options are limitless!

If you have any ideas for games that would make for a great literary carnival, let me know at shara@bookreporter.com or on Twitter or Facebook.

And as always, enjoy the rest of the newsletter! On Kidsreads, we have two contests and special features, a cover reveal, a joint interview and 27 (!) reviews. We also included some features from Bookreporter.com and ReadingGroupGuides.com as an extra treat (or, as Willy Wonka would say, an extra Whipple-Scrumptious Fudgemallow Delight!).

--- Shara Zaval (shara@bookreporter.com)

PS: If you're wondering about the photo in the middle, that's a fellow volunteer from the Association of American Publishers' Young to Publishing Group working at the hat-making station with a few early birds just before the fair started! Other volunteers ran around the fair sneaking candy into the hats, so it seemed like they magically filled up throughout the afternoon.
 

Special Contest: RED BERRIES, WHITE CLOUDS, BLUE SKY by Sandra Dallas

Sandra Dallas is famous for writing novels for adults, from TRUE SISTERS to THE PERSIAN PICKLE, but her newest book --- RED BERRIES, WHITE CLOUDS, BLUE SKY --- is for kids like you! This book follows 12-year-old Tomi, a second-generation Japanese-American girl who was born and raised in California. She lives a normal, happy life --- until the Japanese drop a bomb on Pearl Harbor. After that, her family faces extreme prejudices, and she's even sent to an internment camp in Colorado. Can Tomi overcome her bitterness towards a country that treats her like an enemy, and prove that she is, in fact, an honorable American?

Be one of 100 readers to win a free copy of RED BERRIES, WHITE CLOUDS, BLUE SKY by entering our contest before Tuesday, November 11th at noon ET.

Click here to learn more about the book.
Click here to read the review.
Click here to read the excerpt.

 

Click here to enter the contest!

 
Special Contest: JACK STAPLES AND THE RING OF TIME by Mark Batterson and Joel N. Clark
What would you do if you woke up in the middle of an epic battle between good and evil in a fantastical land? And what if you were destined to play a pivotal part in this world --- to both save it and destroy it? These are tough questions, and 11-year-old Jack Staples has to try to answer them in JACK STAPLES AND THE RING OF TIME by Mark Batterson and Joel N. Clark, along with his friend Alexia.

We dive into the first installment of this adventure-filled new series with a special contest --- 10 lucky readers will win a copy of the book if you enter before Monday, September 29th at noon ET.

Click here to learn more about the book.
Click here to read the review.
Click here to read the excerpt.
Click here to read the interview.

 

Click here to enter the contest!

 
Quirky Celebrations --- September: National Grandparents Day
While it's always fun to bake cookies with your grandma or go to the zoo with your grandpa, it's especially exciting on September 7th --- National Grandparents Day! To celebrate this important holiday, we decided to talk to two authors of awesome grandparent-centric picture books: Lauren Castillo (NANA IN THE CITY) and Toni Buzzeo (MY BIBI ALWAYS REMEMBERS). Learn about the inspiration for their stories, their favorite memories with their grandparents and more, and be sure to read their books with your grandma or grandpa this month!
 
Click here to read about this month's quirky celebration!

 
DINOSAUR BOY Cover Reveal

We're so excited to be able to reveal the cover of Cory Putman Oakes's book DINOSAUR BOY, which hits shelves in February 2015! Read Cory's article to learn more about the awesome characters in DINOSAUR BOY --- which follows Sawyer, who grows 17 stegosaurus-like spikes down his back the summer before fifth grade --- and to see the eye-popping cover image!

Click here to read more!

 
September's New Picture Books Roundup

Our September picture book roundup includes ALADDIN: A Cut-Paper Book by Agnese Baruzzi, which brings the beloved folk tale to life in an intricate, lace-like, die-cut paper book; TELEPHONE by Mac Barnett and illustrated by Jen Corace, an uproarious interpretation of a favorite children’s game, with birds passing messages down the line; and ALEXANDER, WHO'S TRYING HIS BEST TO BE THE BEST BOY EVER by Judith Viorst and illustrated by Isidre Mones, where the boy famous for having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day tries his hand at behaving.
 

Click here to see September's New Picture Books roundup!

 
September’s Cool & New Books Roundup

Our September roundup includes YOKO'S DIARY: The Life of a Young Girl in Hiroshima During WWII, edited by Paul Ham, the real and poignant diary of a 13-year-old Japanese girl who lived near Hiroshima; BAD MAGIC, the first in a magical new series by Pseudonymous Bosch; and THOMAS JEFFERSON: PRESIDENT AND PHILOSOPHER by Jon Meacham, the illustrated biography of the life and political philosophy of one of our Founding Fathers, adapted from THOMAS JEFFERSON: The Art of Power.

Click here to see September's Cool & New Books roundup!

 
September's New in Paperback Roundup

Among the paperback titles releasing this month, we have KIDS WHO ARE CHANGING THE WORLD by Anne Jankeliowitch, which features the inspiring stories of 45 young heroes who have made an impact on our planet; EL DEAFO by Cece Bell, a graphic memoir about Cece’s childhood hearing loss; and COUNTING BY 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan, about an extraordinary girl who manages to push through her grief after her parents are killed.

Click here to visit our September New in Paperback feature!

 
Fall Preview Contests and Feature on Bookreporter.com
Fall is known as the biggest season of the year for books. The titles that release during this latter part of the year often become holiday gifts, and many are blockbusters. To celebrate the arrival of fall, Bookreporter.com is spotlighting a number of outstanding books that we know people will be talking about in the days and months to come. We will be hosting a series of 24-hour contests for these titles on select days in September and October, so you will have to check the site each day to see the featured prize book and enter to win. We also will be sending a special newsletter to announce the day's title, which you can sign up for here.

Today's prize book is ROOMS by Lauren Oliver. To enter, please fill out this form by Wednesday, September 24th at 11:59am.

- Click here to read the Bookreporter.com Official Rules for the 2014 Fall Preview Contests.
- Click here to see the 2014 Fall Preview Contest winners.
Click here to read all the contest details and see our featured titles.

 
Are You a Member of a Book Club? Then Visit ReadingGroupGuides.com!

Are you a member of a reading group? Then you might be interested in ReadingGroupGuides.com, our website specifically for members of book clubs!

The site features more than 3,900 (!) reading guides in a searchable database to help you plan a great discussion, plus monthly contests, a newsletter with book club news, and the ability to see what other book clubs are reading to help you decide what to devour next!

Check out the site here, but be warned --- if you're not in a book club yet, you definitely will be tempted to join one after looking!
 

Click here to visit ReadingGroupGuides.com.

 
Books on Screen--The Boxtrolls

This September, look out for the release of The Boxtrolls --- based on Alan Snow’s HERE BE MONSTERS! --- a stop motion adventure-comedy film that looked stunning in its early trailer. The film is about an orphaned boy named Eggs raised by trash-collecting trolls. But when an evil exterminator sets his sights on eliminating the Boxtrolls, Eggs has to find a way to save the only family he's ever known. Animated entirely with stop-motion technology, this one looks like it will be a visual treat.


 

In Theaters:

The Boxtrolls
Cast: Elle Fanning, Ben Kingsley, Toni Collette, Simon Pegg, Isaac Hempstead Wright, Nick Frost, Tracy Morgan
Director: Graham Annable and Anthony Stacchi
Distributor: Focus Features
MPAA Rating: PG
Release Date: September 26th
Based On: HERE BE MONSTERS! by Alan Snow

An orphaned boy named Eggs is raised by underground cave-dwelling trash collectors called the Boxtrolls. When the Boxtrolls are targeted by an evil exterminator named Archibald Snatcher, Eggs must go to great lengths to save his family.
 

Click here to read Books on Screen!

 
Now in Stores: THOMAS JEFFERSON: President and Philosopher by Jon Meacham

THOMAS JEFFERSON: President and Philosopher by Jon Meacham (Historical Nonfiction)

This biography on Thomas Jefferson contains a note from Meacham and over 100 archival illustrations, as well as sections throughout the text about subjects such as the Boston Tea Party, the Library of Congress, and Napoléon Bonaparte. This adaptation, ideal for those interested in American presidents, biographies, and the founding of the American republic, is an excellent example of informational writing and reflects Meacham’s extensive research using primary source material. Reviewed by Corinne Fox.

Click here to read more about the book.
 

Click here to read the review.

 
Now in Stores: THE CIRCUS GOES TO SEA (Three-Ring Rascals) by Kate Klise

THE CIRCUS GOES TO SEA (Three-Ring Rascals) written by Kate Klise, illustrated by M. Sarah Klise

Sir Sidney’s Circus usually travels by train. But one day a letter arrives from Flora Endora Eliza LaBuena LaPasta inviting the circus aboard the SS Spaghetti, a floating palace of elegance and entertainment. Who could resist? One problem: Miss LaPasta does not want Barnabas Brambles to come aboard, because she has heard that he’s the meanest man alive. Sir Sidney, the nicest man alive, says that the entire circus will accept Miss LaPasta’s invitation, including Barnabas Brambles. But Leo the lion doesn’t like water. Elsa the elephant doesn’t know how to swim. Where will the Flying Banana Brothers put their trapeze? And hey, what’s that large object up ahead in the water?

Click here to read more about the book.

 
New Reviews!
NEW! THE IRON TRIAL by Holly Black and Cassandra Clare (Fantasy)

Most kids would do anything to pass the Iron Trial. Not Callum Hunt. He wants to fail. All his life, Call has been warned by his father to stay away from magic. If he succeeds at the Iron Trial and is admitted into the Magisterium, he is sure it can only mean bad things for him. So he tries his best to do his worst --- and fails at failing. Reviewed by Norah Piehl.

NEW! NEST by Esther Ehrlich (Fiction)

Home is a cozy nest on Cape Cod for 11-year-old Naomi “Chirp” Orenstein, her older sister, Rachel; her psychiatrist father and her dancer mother. But then Chirp’s mom develops symptoms of a serious disease, and everything changes. Chirp finds comfort in watching her beloved wild birds. She also finds a true friend in Joey, the mysterious boy who lives across the street. Together they create their own private world and come up with the perfect plan: Escape. Adventure. Discovery. Reviewed by Norah Piehl.

NEW! THE PAPER COWBOY by Kristin Levine (Fiction)

Though he thinks of himself as a cowboy, Tommy is really a bully. He's always playing cruel jokes on classmates or stealing from the store. But Tommy has a reason: life at home is tough. His abusive mother isn't well; in fact, she may be mentally ill, and his sister, Mary Lou, is in the hospital badly burned from doing a chore it was really Tommy's turn to do. To make amends, Tommy takes over Mary Lou's paper route. Reviewed by Aimee Rogers.

NEW! CAST AWAY ON THE LETTER A by Fred (Youth Graphic Novel)

On an ordinary day in the countryside, Philemon falls into a well on his father’s farm and lands on an A-shaped island complete with unicorns, centaurs and exploding clocks. He begins a wild and whimsical journey home through a fantasy world as original as Alice’s Wonderland, as richly imagined as Little Nemo’s Slumberland, and as exciting to explore as Oz. Reviewed by Rachel B., Teen Board Member.

NEW! THESEUS AND THE MINOTAUR by Yvan Pommaux (Comic)

Master French cartoonist Yvan Pommaux introduces a wealth of historically accurate details that immerse readers in the context and culture of ancient Greece. The story is supplemented with character cards, maps, mazes, and an index of cited names. Reviewed by Norah Piehl.

NEW! THE ZOO AT THE EDGE OF THE WORLD by Eric Kahn Gale (Fiction)

Marlin is not slow, or mute; what he is is a stutterer, and that makes it impossible for him to convince people otherwise. What he also is a Rackham: the youngest son of the world-famous explorer Roland Rackham, who is the owner and proprietor of the Zoo at the Edge of the World, a resort where the well-to-do from all over the world can come to experience the last bit of the wild left in the world at the end of the 19th century. Reviewed by Rebecca Czochor.

NEW! CARTWHEELING IN THUNDERSTORMS by Katherine Rundell (Fiction)

Wilhelmina Silver’s world is golden. Living half-wild on an African farm with her horse, her monkey and her best friend, every day is beautiful. But when her home is sold and Will is sent away to boarding school in England, the world becomes impossibly difficult. Lions and hyenas are nothing compared to packs of vicious schoolgirls. Where can a girl run to in London? And will she have the courage to survive? Reviewed by Rebecca Czochor.

NEW! EL DEAFO by Cece Bell (Memoir)

Going to school and making new friends can be tough. But going to school and making new friends while wearing a bulky hearing aid strapped to your chest? That requires superpowers! In this funny, poignant graphic novel memoir, author/illustrator Cece Bell chronicles her hearing loss at a young age and her subsequent experiences with the Phonic Ear, a very powerful --- and very awkward --- hearing aid. Reviewed by Aimee Rogers.

NEW! THE GRAHAM CRACKER PLOT by Shelley Tougas (Youth Fiction)

Meet Daisy Bauer and her sometimes best friend, Graham, who are determined to break Daisy's dad out of prison in this hilarious middle-grade debut. No one believes her, but Daisy Bauer knows her dad has been wrongfully imprisoned and that it's up to her to break him out of jail (aka Club Fed). She has a plan that she's calling the Graham Cracker Plot because it was all Graham's idea. She just needs a miniature horse, a getaway truck and a penny from 1919 --- the idea coin. Reviewed by Amy Alessio.

NEW! YOKO'S DIARY by Paul Ham (History)

The discovered diary of Yoko, a 13-year-old Japanese girl who lived near Hiroshima during the war She is a highly intelligent child; but the full weight of Japanese propaganda can be felt through her thoughts and observations; she is also a classic example of the dutiful Japanese daughter, but one with a keenly observant eye. Reviewed by Christine Irvin.

NEW! COURTING MAGIC: A Kat, Incorrigible Novella by Stephanie Burgis (Fantasy)

In Kat Stephenson's Regency England, magic is even more shocking than a stolen kiss. But now that she's 18, it's time for wild and magical Kat to be introduced to high society by her older sisters, whether she likes it or not...and to finally have a romance of her own! Reviewed by Quinn Colter.

NEW! THE FOURTEENTH GOLDFISH by Jennifer L. Holm (Fiction)

Eleven-year-old Ellie has never liked change. She misses fifth grade. She misses her old best friend. She even misses her dearly departed goldfish. Then one day a strange boy shows up. He’s bossy. He’s cranky. And weirdly enough...he looks a lot like Ellie’s grandfather, a scientist who’s always been slightly obsessed with immortality. Could this pimply boy really be Grandpa Melvin? Has he finally found the secret to eternal youth? Reviewed by Emma Kantor.

NEW! SISTERS by Raina Telgemeier (Fiction)

Raina can't wait to be a big sister. But once Amara is born, things aren't quite how she expected them to be. Amara is cute, but she's also a cranky, grouchy baby, and mostly prefers to play by herself. Their relationship doesn't improve much over the years, but when a baby brother enters the picture and later, something doesn't seem right between their parents, they realize they must figure out how to get along. They are sisters, after all. Reviewed by Aimee Rogers.

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NEW! GREENGLASS HOUSE by Kate Milford (Fiction)

It’s wintertime at Greenglass House. The creaky smuggler’s inn is always quiet during this season, and 12-year-old Milo, the innkeepers’ adopted son, plans to spend his holidays relaxing. But on the first icy night of vacation, out of nowhere, the guest bell rings. Then rings again. And again. Soon Milo’s home is bursting with odd, secretive guests, each one bearing a strange story that is somehow connected to the rambling old house. As objects go missing and tempers flare, Milo and Meddy, the cook’s daughter, must decipher clues and untangle the web of deepening mysteries to discover the truth about Greenglass House --- and themselves. Reviewed by Sheena Kowalski.

NEW! BECAUSE THEY MARCHED: The People's Campaign for Voting Rights that Changed America by Russell Freedman (History)

For the 50th anniversary of the 1965 march for voting right from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama, Newbery Medalist Russell Freedman has written a riveting account of this pivotal event in the history of civil rights. Illustrated with more than 40 photographs, this is an essential chronicle of events every American should know. Reviewed by Anita Lock.

NEW! GABRIEL FINLEY AND THE RAVEN'S RIDDLE by George Hagen, illustrated by Scott Bakal (Fantasy)

How can 12-year-old Gabriel find his missing father, who seems to have vanished without a trace? With the help of Paladin --- a young raven with whom he has a magical bond that enables them to become one creature --- he flies to the foreboding land of Aviopolis, where he must face a series of difficult challenges and unanswerable riddles that could lead to his father . . . or to his death. Reviewed by Lily Philpott.

NEW! PORTRAITS OF HISPANIC AMERICAN HEROES by Juan Felipe Herrera and Raul Colon (Nonfiction)

An inspiring tribute to Hispanic Americans who have made a positive impact on the world. This visually stunning book showcases 20 Hispanic men and women who have made outstanding contributions to the arts, politics, science, humanitarianism and athletics. Gorgeous portraits complement sparkling biographies of Cesar Chavez, Sonia Sotomayor, Ellen Ochoa, Roberto Clemente and many more. Complete with timelines and famous quotes, this tome is a magnificent homage to those who have shaped our nation. Reviewed by Anita Lock.

NEW! THE BADGER KNIGHT by Kathryn Erskine (Historical Fiction)

Adrian is small, even for an almost 13-year-old. It doesn't help that he has albinism, which makes those he meets wonder if he's an angel or a devil. His father is a bowyer, and all Adrian wants to do is become apprenticed and go off to war as an archer. However, since Adrian can write, his father wants him to be a scribe --- the last thing that Adrian wants. Reviewed by Corinne Fox.

NEW! THE FRANKENSTEIN JOURNALS by Scott Sonneborn and Timothy Banks (Fiction)

Fourteen-year-old J.D. discovers why he never fit in at the creepy orphanage --- he's the son of Frankenstein's monster! Old photos, maps, artifacts, and entries from the mad scientist's own journals will plunge the reader into J.D.'s quest to track down his Frankenstein family. But will he be in time? A shadowy stalker seeks the journals --- and J.D. --- to build a new, more powerful monster! Reviewed by Sally Tibbetts.

NEW! CHARLIE JOE JACKSON'S GUIDE TO MAKING MONEY by Tommy Greenwald (Fiction)

Charlie Joe’s weekly allowance just isn’t cutting it and he desperately needs money to buy a Botman, the latest gadget to sweep his middle school. Only catch is, he wants to earn the money by doing the least amount of work possible. After several failed attempts, including a near disastrous day of dog-walking, Charlie Joe hatches a plan to throw his own bar mitzvah (no gifts please --- checks only) even though he’s not Jewish. Hilarity ensues when throwing a fake coming-of-age party turns out to be much harder than it looks. Reviewed by Christine Irvin.

NEW! PERCY JACKSON'S GREEK GODS by Rick Riordan and John Rocco (Mythology)

"A publisher in New York asked me to write down what I know about the Greek gods, and I was like, Can we do this anonymously? Because I don't need the Olympians mad at me again. But if it helps you to know your Greek gods, and survive an encounter with them if they ever show up in your face, then I guess writing all this down will be my good deed for the week." So begins PERCY JACKSON'S GREEK GODS, in which the son of Poseidon adds his own magic --- and sarcastic asides --- to the classics. Reviewed by Sarah Egelman.

NEW! THE RED PENCIL by Andrea Davis Pinkney (Fiction)

Finally, Amira is 12. Old enough to wear a toob, old enough for new responsibilities. And maybe old enough to go to school in Nyala --- Amira's one true dream. But life in her peaceful Sudanese village is shattered when the Janjaweed arrive. The terrifying attackers ravage the town and unleash unspeakable horrors. After she loses nearly everything, Amira needs to dig deep within herself to find the strength to make the long journey --- on foot --- to safety at a refugee camp. Her days are tough at the camp, until the gift of a simple red pencil opens her mind --- and all kinds of possibilities. Reviewed by Christine Irvin.

NEW! BAD MAGIC by Pseudonymous Bosch (Youth Fiction)

Magic is BAD. As in fake. Cheesy. Unreal. At least, that's what Clay, who has seen one magic show too many, thinks. When words from his journal appear mysteriously on his school wall as graffiti, he never imagines that magic might be to blame. And when the same graffiti lands him at Earth Ranch, a camp for "troubled" kids on a remote volcanic island, magic is the last thing he expects to find there. Reviewed by Corinne Fox.

NEW! FANTASY LEAGUE by Mike Lupica (Sports Fiction)

Twelve-year-old Charlie is a fantasy football guru. He may be just a bench warmer for his school's football team, but when it comes to knowing and loving the game, he's first-string. He even becomes a celebrity when his podcast gets noticed by a sports radio host, who plays Charlie's fantasy picks for all of Los Angeles to hear. Reviewed by Amy Alessio.

NEW! LIFE OF ZARF: The Trouble with Weasels by Rob Harrell (Youth Fantasy Fiction)

It’s not easy being Zarf. As a troll, he's stuck at the bottom of the middle school hierarchy, way below the prince and knights (populars), ogres and giants (jocks) and even the lowly minstrels (band geeks). Plus, trolls aren't exactly known for their brain power or cool demeanor. But it gets worse. When the king disappears and Zarf's archenemy, the prince, ascends the throne, he makes Zarf's life even more miserable. And so it is that Zarf and his two sidekicks (a neurotic, mutton-obsessed pig and the not-funny son of the court jester) set out to find the missing king as well as their way to middle school heroism. (Okay, the heroism part might be wishful thinking.) Reviewed by Corinne Fox.

NEW! TELL ME by Joan Bauer (Fiction)

The unofficial town motto is "Nothing bad ever happens in Rosemont" where 12-year-old Anna has come to stay with her grandmother, Mim, hoping to forget her worries about her parents' troubled marriage. She'll be busy with the town's annual Flower Festival, a celebration with floats and bands that requires weeks of preparations. That is, until she sees a little girl she think may be being held against her will. Reviewed by Kathy Purcell.

NEW! LITTLE AUTHOR IN THE BIG WOODS by Yona Zeldis McDonough (Biography)

Many girls in elementary and middle school fall in love with the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder. What they don’t always realize is that Wilder’s books are autobiographical. This narrative biography describes more of the details of Laura’s real life as a young pioneer homesteading with her family on many adventurous journeys. This biography, complete with charming illustrations, points out the differences between the fictional series as well as the many similarities. It’s a fascinating story of a much-celebrated writer. Reviewed by Christine Irvin.


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