The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly is the sequel to The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate, in which the reader first meets Calpurnia Virginia Tate, "Callie", the only girl in a family of six brothers living in central Texas in the early 1900's. Callie is different then most of the girls around her, as much to her mother's dismay, she loves only the outdoors, plants and animals alike, and does not want to learn to cook, sew or play the piano. With her grandfather, a noted botanist's guidance, she continues to learn and grow in her knowledge as this second book begins. But it is her younger brother, Travis, who provides much of the adventure in this book. Travis adopts and tries to tame all sorts of wild animals, from birds and bunnies to raccoons and coyotes. Often he solicits Callie's help as the animals wreak havoc all over their Texas ranch. When a new animal vet moves to town, he thinks Travis might have what it takes to become a vet and offers to let him watch and help out. But it is Callie, not Travis who has the talent and the stomach to assist. Read to find out if this girl will be allowed to do things only boys were allowed to do in 1900 including thinking about going to college!
In Woundabout by Lev Rosen the reader meets Cordelia, age nine, and Connor, age eleven and their pet capybara, Kip, on the way to the town of Woundabout to meet their only living relative, Aunt Marigold for the first time. Sadly, the children's parents who ran a capybara ranch training them to sniff bombs, died in an accident. Although Aunt Marigold seems happy to adopt the children, she is strange and distant at first and it is the butler Gray who shows the children around their new home and the strangely quiet town of Wondabout. They find barren parks and few children but also some weird eight-sided holes in various points around the town. Read to find out what is really going on in Woundabout, how the children solve the mystery, win the hearts of its people, and find a home where they can be happy. Grade 3-5.
The Spy Catchers of Maple Hill by Megan Frazer Blakemore takes place in 1953 in a small town in Vermont, where the local factory is being investigated for "communists" during the period of our history when the country was in a cold war with Russia and very fearful that communist spies were hiding everywhere! Smart, sassy Hazel is a loner, often ostracized by other students at school because her parents run the local cemetery where Hazel spends a lot of time. But Hazel who loves mysteries, quickly throws herself into the controversy seeing a likely spy suspect in her parent's employee Mr. Jones. With a new friend in town, Samuel, whose past is also a mystery, Hazel begins her own investigation, complete with midnight spying, interviews, and research at the library, but what if she is very wrong? Read to find out what is going on in Maple Hill and how two friends learn a lot about trust, fairness and their history. Grade 4-6.
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.