Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, parts one and two by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne is not a book but a new play whose script begins about 20 years after we leave Harry and friends in the last book of the famous series. So here is the most important thing to know about this "sequel" - read it only after reading the full Harry Potter series. It is necessary that the reader understand the characters, their stories, their relationships, adventures, struggles and the magical creatures and locations that make up the original books. Only then will this story make sense and be enjoyable. In this script Harry and Ginny and Ron and Hermione are grown up and married with children. The story centers on one of Harry's sons, Albus and the friend he meets on his first day at Hogwarts, Scorpious, the son of Harry's old nemesis Draco Malfoy. Both boys have struggled with being the son of a famous or infamous father and both are not happy at school. Desperate to do something special they stumble upon an old wrong they want to fix and a time-changer device that might help them do so. But going back in time is always fraught with danger and problems, and that is what the boys find. Their tinkering could change the wizardry world as they know it today, and not for the better! Fantasy fiction. Grades 4 and up (who have read the Harry Potter series).
In Ellray Jakes Stands Tall! the reader meets Ellray a new character starring in a new series that is full of genuine situations and characters you feel like you could meet or have met in real life. Ellray is in third grade and desperate to get taller as the boys in his class have become obsessed with basketball and some enjoy teasing Ellray. To add to his angst, he is afraid his younger sister is becoming a bully like the ones he is facing. But as the year progresses, a new coach starts actually teaching the skills of the game, and Ellray learns how to stand up for himself, discovering he already stands pretty tall, even without growing an inch. Realistic/sports fiction. Grades 2-4.
The Toothpaste Millionaire by Jean Merrill- is an older book that is definitely worth a second look! Rufus Mayflower is only in sixth grade but as his new friend Kate is learning, his mind and skills are way older. He is curious, resourceful and questions everything, including why toothpaste costs so much when you can actually make it yourself for pennies? So he sets out to do just that, and with Kate's help, and eventually many other students, he creates a toothpaste empire, becoming a millionaire before moving on to his next interest. In the process we learn with Rufus, the ins and outs of product invention, from testing and refining, to packaging to distribution. These kids handle it all! Realistic fiction, grade 3-5.
The Gold-Threaded Dress by Carolyn Marsden, is an older story that is still relevant and fresh. Oy and her family have moved from Thailand to America where she is now called Olivia in school. Although her parents want Oy to only focus on her homework and grades, she cares about friends too and what the other students think of her. And she longs to be accepted by the popular girls and their exclusive "club". They shun her and her differences until they find out about her beautiful traditional Thai dress with its gold threads and pink silk. Will sharing this treasure help Oy be accepted and is it the right thing to do? Realistic-multicultural fiction. Grade 2-3.
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.