In the graphic novel Thunder Boy, Jr. by Sherman Alexie, illustrated by Yuyi Morales a young American Indian boy is not happy with his name. He is named for his father, Big Thunder, who he loves and admires but he really wants his name to be about him. So he tries out different names, based on what he likes and is good at. He climbs mountains and loves to bike ride. What will it be, and will his dad understand? Read to find out, enjoy the fun illustrations and learn about a different way to find a name! Graphic novel. All grades.
Tru & Nelle by Greg Neri is based on the real life friendship of two famous authors who spent time in a small Southern town in the 1930's when they were kids. Author, Truman Capote (Tru) and Harper Lee (Nelle) who wrote To Kill a Mockingbird as an adult, meet in Monroesville, Alabama where Tru comes to stay with his cousins and Nelle lives with her lawyer father and frail mother. Nelle is a confirmed tomboy, dressed in overalls, always outside and often taken for a boy, while Tru, from New Orleans, is book smart, dresses in suits, not athletic, and is neglected by his parents. They are as different as can be except for their love of reading and mysteries, and in their disregard of the color of someones skin, all of which draws them together. Through several summers they trade books, have many bizarre adventures, find and solve a great mystery, and even defy the Klu Klux Klan. Historical fiction. Grades 4-6.
Gone Fishing by Tamera Will Wissinger, illustrated by Matthew Cordell is called a "novel in verse" which is exactly what it is. Not just a story, not just a poem, this unique book is both. The story is told in a series of poems, mostly by Sam with some help from his younger sister Lucy. Sam and his father love fishing and Sam looks forward to the sport, the lake, and his special time with his Dad. But then Lucy wants to join and changes everything. Through all sorts of poetry including free verse, list poems, quatrains, concrete poems, couplets and more, the reader is treated to the ups and downs of going fishing, family and fun, all punctuated by drawings that also tell the tale. A 2017 Bluestem nominee. Grades 2-5
In The War that Saved My Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley the war is World War II and the setting is London. In this absorbing historical fiction we meet three memorable characters under difficult circumstances. Afraid of the bombing the city will receive, families in the countryside have offered to care for children of the city. Eleven year old Ada's mother has decided to send Ada's younger brother Jamie to safety but not Ada. Ada was born with a club foot and has been raised as a virtual prisoner, hidden by her ignorant mother who is very ashamed of Ada's disability. But this time, Ada refuses to be left behind, teaching herself how to walk in secret and then escaping with Jamie. In the countryside, it looks like nobody will take these siblings in, until the woman in charge leaves them with a reluctant recluse, Susan Smith. This odd trio finds they can help and heal each other, especially Ada, as Susan recognizes Ada is a smart, incredibly determined and special girl. But what will happen when the war is over? Historical fiction. Grades 4-7.
My Reading List!
I am the Library Media Center director at Patton School in Arlington Heights where I help students from kindergarten through 5th grade find terrific independent reading for enjoyment and information, and teach students the skills to use information and technology safely and productively and to connect, communicate and share with others. I have four grown children, a large black dog, (flat coat retriever) and a small striped cat. I am an obessive Chicago Cubs fan and I love to run.