Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Frandidate (Franny K. Stein, Mad Scientist Series #7)

The Frandidate (Franny K. Stein, Mad Scientist Series #7), Vol. 7 by Jim Benton, illustrated by Jim Benton
Determined to be elected class president, mad scientist Frannie K. Stein uses her Atomic Combiner to create a suit that makes her seem to be whatever a voter wants her to be, but the suit has plans of its own.

My Dad, John McCain and Barack Obama Son of Promise, Child of Hope

My Dad, John McCain by Meghan McCain, illustrated by Dan Andreason
This picture book biography, written with great love and insight by his oldest daughter, writer Meghan McCain, shows us the public John McCain and the personal John McCain in a way we've never seen before--making this American hero come to life before young eyes.

Barack Obama: Son of Promise, Child of Hope by Nikki Grimes, illustrated by Bryan Collier
Ever since Barack Obama was young, hope has lived inside him. From the beaches of Hawaii to the streets of Chicago, from the jungles of Indonesia to the plains of Kenya, he has held on to hope. Even as a boy, Barack knew he wasn't quite like anybody else, but through his journeys he found the ability to listen to hope and become what he was meant to be: a bridge to bring people together.

Imaginary Enemy

Imaginary Enemy by Julie Gonzalez
Although her impetuous behavior, smart-mouthed comments, and slacker ways have landed her in trouble over the years, sixteen-year-old Jane has always put the blame on her "imaginary enemy," until a new development forces her to decide whether or not to assume responsibility for her actions.

Traction Man Meets Turbodog

Traction Man Meets Turbodog by Mini Grey
Traction Man, an action figure, teams up with the high-tech but not-so-bright Turbodog to rescue Scrubbing Brush, his missing sidekick, from the terrible underworld of the bin. Hey! Here's an amazing interview with Mini Grey and some looks at her other books. Go there!

Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation, Volume II : The Kingdom on the Waves

Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation, Volume II : The Kingdom on the Waves by M. T. Anderson
Fearing a death sentence, Octavian and his tutor, Dr. Trefusis, escape through rising tides and pouring rain to find shelter in British-occupied Boston. Sundered from all he knows — the College of Lucidity, the rebel cause — Octavian hopes to find safe harbor. Instead, he is soon to learn of Lord Dunmore's proclamation offering freedom to slaves who join the counterrevolutionary forces.

You're a Bad Man, Mr. Gum!

You're a Bad Man, Mr. Gum! by Andy Stanton, illustrated by Chad Dezern
Brave-hearted young Polly attempts to stop mean old Mr. Gum from poisoning Jake, a huge dog adopted by the town of Lamonic Bibber that keeps destroying Mr. Gum's garden, and thus provoking the angry fairy who lives there. Includes a glossary of such English terms as gob and trouserface.

Steinbeck's Ghost

"Okay. It's like this. It's like all the books I've been reading, they're coming to life or something...What I mean is, the more I read, the more the world changes. Actually changes." "Books do that."

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Box Out

Box Out by John Coy
Liam has just been bumped up to starter on the varsity basketball team, and the pressure's on. With the girls' team heading to State, the boys' team is under even greater scrutiny than usual in Liam's small midwestern town. When the team's coach starts counting on the power of prayer---and enforcing teamwide participation---Liam finds himself in a spotlight that's more nerve-racking than any trip to the free-throw line. In trying to stand up for what's right, Liam is forced to stand up for himself---against his teammates, his fellow students, and even his parents.

The Battle of the Labyrinth (Percy Jackson and the Olympians Series #4)

The Battle of the Labyrinth (Percy Jackson and the Olympians Series #4) by Rick Riordan

Jack: Secret Histories (Repairman Jack Novels)

Jack: Secret Histories (Repairman Jack Novels) by F. Paul Wilson
Teenaged Jack, later to be known as Repairman Jack, begins to uncover some unsuspected talents in himself after he and his friends, the clever, imaginative Weezy and her brother Eddie, discover a corpse deep in the mysterious Pine Barrens near their New Jersey town.

The Lost Art

The Lost Art by Simon Morden
A millennium after a devastating war changed the direction of Earth's rotation, when the Church keeps science and technology suppressed, magician-like Benzamir and Va, a killer-for-hire turned monk, seek Solomon, who is surreptitiously spreading technology for nefarious purposes.

Lavinia: A Novel

Lavinia: A Novel by Ursula K. LeGuin
In The Aeneid, Vergil's hero fights to claim the king's daughter, Lavinia, with whom he is destined to found an empire. Lavinia herself never speaks a word in the poem. Now, Ursula K. Le Guin gives Lavinia a voice in a novel that takes the reader to the half-wild world of ancient Italy, when Rome was a muddy village near seven hills.

Elephant and Piggie Series

Elephant and Piggie Series by Mo Willems
Bestselling picture book creator Mo Willems is making his debut in the early-reader arena with the Elephant and Piggie series. The books feature two lovable and funny characters: an optimistic (and sometimes reckless) pig, and a cautious, pessimistic elephant.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Child of All Nations

Child of All Nations by Irmgard Keun, translated from the German by Michael Hofmann
Kully knows some things you don't learn at school. She knows how to roll a cigarette and pack a suitcase. She knows that cars are more dangerous than lions. And she knows that she and her parents can't go back to Germany again - her father's books are banned there. But there are also things she doesn't understand.

Off to War: Voices of Soldiers' Children

Off to War: Voices of Soldiers' Children by Deborah Ellis
The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have impacted the children of soldiers--men and women who have been called away from their families to fight in a faraway war. In their own words, some of these children describe how their experience has marked and shaped their lives.

Architecture by Birds and Insects: A Natural Art

Architecture by Birds and Insects: A Natural Art written and illustrated by Peggy Macnamara, foreward by David Quammen
Birds and insects are nature’s premier architects, using a dizzying array of talents to build functional homes in which to live, reproduce, and care for their young. Recycling sticks, branches, grass, and mud to construct their shelters, they are undoubtedly the originators of “green architecture.”A visual celebration of these natural feats of engineering and ingenuity, Architecture by Birds and Insects allows readers a peek inside a wide range of nests, offering a rare opportunity to get a sense of the materials and methods used to build them.

Little Mouse's Big Book of Fears

Little Mouse's Big Book of Fears by Emily Gravett
Little Mouse draws pictures of some of the many things he is afraid of, including creepy crawlies, sharp knives, and having accidents, and provides the correct scientific name for each of his fears.

Bog Child

Bog Child by Siobhan Dowd
In 1981, the height of Ireland's "Troubles," eighteen-year-old Fergus is distracted from his upcoming A-level exams by his imprisoned brother's hunger strike, the stress of being a courier for Sinn Fein, and dreams of a murdered girl whose body he discovered in a bog.

Melting Stones (Circle Reforged Series #2)

Melting Stones (Circle Reforged Series #2) by Tamora Pierce
Residents of the island of Starns send for help from Winding Circle temple, and when prickly green mage Rosethorn and young stone mage trainee Evvy respond, Evvy finds that the problem is with a long-dormant volcano and tries to use her talents to avert the looming destruction.


Triskellion by Will Peterson
A sense of foreboding sets in the moment fourteen-year-old twins Rachel and Adam arrive from New York to visit their English grandmother. The station is empty, village streets are deserted, locals are hostile, and even their frail Granny Root is oddly distant. And what about the bees that appear to follow a mysterious force? It all seems tied up with the Triskellion -- an intertwining symbol etched in chalk on the moors. With a growing sense of danger and white-knuckle suspense, the twins are compelled to unearth a secret that has protected the village for centuries, one that reveals a shocking truth about their ancestors -- and themselves.

The Other Side of the Island

The Other Side of the Island by Allegra Goodman
Born in the eighth year of Enclosure, ten-year-old Honor lives in a highly regulated colony with her defiant parents, but when they have an illegal second child and are taken away, it is up to Honor and her friend Helix, another "Unpredictable," to uncover a terrible secret about their Island and the Corporation that runs everything.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008


Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson
When her former owner breaks his promise to set her free and ends up sending her to live with a cruel loyalist family at the start of the Revolutionary War, Isabel is heartbroken and so becomes determined to do whatever is necessary to win her freedom, including spying on her family to help the rebels win the war.

The Apprentice's Masterpiece: A Story of Medieval Spain

The Apprentice's Masterpiece: A Story of Medieval Spain by Melanie Little
In this novel set in 15th-century Spain at the time of the Inquisition, prejudice, bigotry, and ignorance destroy the peaceful coexistence of Christians, Jews, and Muslims. The effects of this dismal history are dramatized in this story of two teens—Ramon, a Converso or converted Jew, and Amir, a Muslim who has been brought as a slave to Ramon's family.

The Year We Disappeared: A Father-Daughter Memoir

The Year We Disappeared: A Father-Daughter Memoir by Cylin Busby and John Busby In 1979, John Busby, a Falmouth, Mass., cop was shot in the face while driving to work. This alternating father-daughter memoir provides a graphic account of the event and its yearlong aftermath-both directly attributable to a corruption-riddled municipal government. Readers should know that the book depicts Busby's shooting, injuries and reconstructive surgeries in unrelenting detail. Until the family was secretly relocated, Cylin, nine, and her brothers struggled to manage an intolerable burden of fear, even under 24-hour police protection. The account ends before readers learn how (or if) they made it to adulthood in one piece. (Kirkus)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Sebastian Darke: Prince of Fools

Sebastian Darke: Prince of Fools by Philip Caveney
Accompanied by his sardonic buffalope Max, seventeen-year-old Sebastian Darke meets a spoiled princess and a diminutive soldier who aid in his quest to become court jester to the evil King Septimus. If you like Book 1, look for Book 2 - Sebastian Darke: Prince of Pirates, available next year in the United States.

Runaways: Dead End Kids

Runaways: Dead End Kids by Joss Whedon
The kids start running in a different direction. Superstar Joss Whedon and rising star Michael Ryan take the Runaways somewhere they've never been before: the Big Apple ... circa 1907! While there, they make surprising allies and even more surprising enemies. Can they escape a super-powered war on the streets of New York?

Brooklyn Bridge: A Novel

Brooklyn Bridge: A Novel by Karen Hesse, illustrations by Chris Sheban
In 1903 Brooklyn, fourteen-year-old Joseph Michtom's life changes for the worse when his parents, Russian immigrants, invent the teddy bear and turn their apartment into a factory, while nearby the glitter of Coney Island contrasts with the dismal lives of children dwelling under the Brooklyn Bridge.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

The Adoration of Jenna Fox

The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson
In the not-too-distant future, when biotechnological advances have made synthetic bodies and brains possible but illegal, a seventeen-year-old girl, recovering from a serious accident and suffering from memory lapses, learns a startling secret about her existence.

Caught Between the Pages

Caught Between the Pages by Marlene Carvell
An indifferent student with few real friends, PJ Barnes accidentally gains possession of his English teacher's personal journal and at the same time becomes involved with some drug dealers, but when his mother is in a car accident that lands her in the hospital, his already complicated life starts to spin out of control.

The Perfect Sword

The Perfect Sword by Scott Goto
After a Japanese master swordmaker and his apprentice craft the perfect sword, they search high and low for someone worthy of it.

The Mayflower and the Pilgrim's New World

The Mayflower and the Pilgrim's New World by Nathaniel Philbrick
Offers the true story of the pioneers who crossed the Atlantic to establish a new world in Massachusetts and the challenges they faced upon their arrival through a review of their relationship with the Native Americans, the promise of peace with the first Thanksgiving, and other related events through detailed maps, photographs, and a time line. Adaptation of: Mayflower : a story of community, courage, and war. New York : Viking, 2006.

Sandy's Circus: A Book About Alexander Calder

Sandy's Circus: A Book About Alexander Calder by Tanya Lee Stone, illustrated by Boris Kulikov
As a boy, Sandy was always fiddling with odds and ends, making objects for friends. When he got older he started creating wire sculptures. Sandy made a lion. Next came a lion cage. Before he knew it, he had an entire circus and was traveling between Paris and New York performing a brand-new kind of art for amazed audiences.

Allie Finkle's Rules for Girls: The New Girl

Allie Finkle's Rules for Girls: The New Girl by Meg Cabot
Guided by her rules, nine-year-old Allie works to get past being just the new girl at school, eagerly awaits the arrival of her kitten, and faces turmoil when her grandmother visits while the family is still settling into their new home.

Sardine in Outer Space, Vol. 5, My Cousin Manga and Other Stories

Sardine in Outer Space, Vol. 5, My Cousin Manga and Other Stories by Emmanuel Guibert, illustrated by Walter Pezzali, translated by Edward Gauvin
Presents more adventures of the mischievous girl pirate named Sardine, as she and the crew of the spaceship "Huckleberry" foil the plans of evildoers Supermuscleman and Doc Krok.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

I Am Apache

I Am Apache by Tanya Landman
After watching helplessly as Mexican raiders brutally murder her little brother, fourteen-year-old Siki is filled with a desire for vengeance and chooses to turn away from a woman's path to become a warrior of her Apache tribe. Though some men, like envious Keste, wish to see Siki fail, she passes test after test, and her skills grow under the guidance of her tribe's greatest warrior, Golahka. But Keste begins to whisper about Siki's father's dishonorable death, and even as Siki earns her place among the warriors, she senses a dark secret in her past — one that will throw into doubt everything she knows.

Sea Queens: Women Pirates Around the World

Sea Queens: Women Pirates Around the World by Jane Yolen, illustrated by Christine Joy Pratt
Throughout the ages, women from all the classes and walks of life turned to pirating out of necessity, desperation, or greed. Acclaimed author Jane Yolen examines the contradictions of these bold women's lives and times.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Child of Dandelions

Child of Dandelions by Shenaaz Nanji
In Uganda in 1972, fifteen-year-old Sabine and her family, wealthy citizens of Indian descent, try to preserve their normal life during the ninety days allowed by President Idi Amin for all foreign Indians to leave the country, while soldiers and others terrorize them and people disappear.

Mexican White Boy

Mexican White Boy by Matt de la Pena
Sixteen-year-old Danny searches for his identity amidst the confusion of being half-Mexican and half-white while spending a summer with his cousin and new friends on the baseball fields and back alleys of San Diego County, California.

The Otherworldlies

The Otherworldlies by Jennifer Anne Kogler
Eccentric and unusual looking, twelve year-old Fern, secure in her family's love and acceptance, has always been able to cope with the taunts and social ostracism of her schoolmates until a series of unnerving events reveal that she possesses supernatural powers that she barely understands and must learn to control if she is to escape being the pawn of two ancient enemies.


Flight by Elizabeth Stow Ellison
Twelve-year-old Samantha struggles with how to best help her artistic older brother and parents who will not have him tested for a learning disability.

Cemetery Street

Cemetery Street by Brenda Seabrooke
Courtney Carmichael, her younger brother, and her depressed, newly-divorced, out-of-work mother move from New Hampshire to Florida into a decrepit house on Cemetery Street, where spooky occurrences make the family feel increasingly unsettled.

It's Only Temporary

It's Only Temporary written and illustrated by Sally Warner

Thank You, Lucky Stars

Thank You, Lucky Stars by Beverly Donofrio
It's the first day of fifth grade, and Ally is psyched. She and her best friend, Betsy, are in the same class, and have already planned on singing in the annual talent show together. But it's not long before she sees that Betsy has made a new best friend, and Ally is no longer on her radar screen. Not to mention that the weird new kid, Tina, has glommed on to Ally.

The Storyteller's Candle/La Velita de los Cuentos

The Storyteller's Candle/La Velita de los Cuentos by Lucia M. Gonzalez, Lulu Delacre
It is the winter of 1929, and cousins Hildamar and Santiago have just moved to enormous, chilly New York from their native Puerto Rico. As Three Kings' Day approaches, Hildamar and Santiago mourn the loss of their sunny home and wonder about their future in their adopted city. But when a storyteller and librarian named Pura Belpré arrives in their classroom, the children begin to understand just what a library can mean to a community.

Elissa's Odyssey: Phoenix Rising #2

Elissa's Odyssey: Phoenix Rising #2 by Erica Verrillo
On their way home after defeating the Khan, Elissa becomes separated from her donkey, Gertrude, and friend Maya, so with the hope of being reunited, she hitches a ride with the unusual crew aboard the precarious Swamp Maiden.