My Booklist

  • Great Books for Reading

Read Aloud Books

  • City of Ember

    by Jeanne Duprau Year Published: Challenging
    It is always night in the city of Ember. But there is no moon, no stars. The only light during the regular twelve hours of "day" comes from floodlamps that cast a yellowish glow over the streets of the city. Beyond are the pitch-black Unknown Regions, which no one has ever explored because an understanding of fire and electricity has been lost, and with it the idea of a Moveable Light. "Besides," they tell each other, "there is nowhere but here" Among the many other things the people of Ember have forgotten is their past and a direction for their future. For 250 years they have lived pleasantly, because there has been plenty of everything in the vast storerooms. But now there are more and more empty shelves--and more and more times when the lights flicker and go out, leaving them in terrifying blackness for long minutes. What will happen when the generator finally fails? Twelve-year-old Doon Harrow and Lina Mayfleet seem to be the only people who are worried. They have just been assigned their life jobs--Lina as a messenger, which leads her to knowledge of some unsettling secrets, and Doon as a Pipeworker, repairing the plumbing in the tunnels under the city where a river roars through the darkness. But when Lina finds a very old paper with enigmatic "Instructions for Egress," they use the advantages of their jobs to begin to puzzle out the frightening and dangerous way to the city of light of which Lina has dreamed. As they set out on their mission, the haunting setting and breathless action of this stunning first novel will have teens clamoring for a sequel.

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  • Hatchet

    by Gary Paulsen Year Published: Challenging
    A boy named Brian is on a trip to the Canadian oilfields to spend the summer with his dad. The pilot of the Cessna he is traveling in suffers a heart attack and dies. Brian must land the plane in the forest. Brian learns to exist in in this wilderness. He faces many dangers including hunger, animal attacks, and even a tornado. This book gives the reader a better understanding of what it is like to survive in an untamed land.

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  • Hoot

    by Carl Hiaasen Year Published: Challenging
    Roy Eberhardt is the new kid--again. This time around it's Trace Middle School in humid Coconut Grove, Florida. But it's still the same old routine: table by himself at lunch, no real friends, and thick-headed bullies like Dana Matherson pushing him around. But if it wasn't for Dana Matherson mashing his face against the school bus window that one day, he might never have seen the tow-headed running boy. And if he had never seen the running boy, he might never have met tall, tough, bully-beating Beatrice. And if he had never met Beatrice, he might never have discovered the burrowing owls living in the lot on the corner of East Oriole Avenue. And if he had never discovered the owls, he probably would have missed out on the adventure of a lifetime.

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  • Maniac Magee

    by Jerry Spinelli Year Published: Average
    After his parents die, Jeffrey Lionel Magee's life becomes legendary, as he accomplishes athletic and other feats which awe his contemporaries.

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  • Matilda

    by Roald Dahl Year Published: Easy Reading
    Matilda applies her untapped mental powers to rid the school of the evil, child-hating headmistress, Miss Trunchbull, and restore her nice teacher, Miss Honey, to financial security.

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  • People of Sparks

    by Jeanne Duprau Year Published: Challenging
    The people of Ember have come to a new world, arriving with hardly more than the clothes on their backs. But the people in the village of Sparks are willing to help them—at least at first. This new world is strange to the Emberites. Why is it so empty? Why is there no electricity? What is the Disaster the people of Sparks talk of? Gradually the Emberites learn the answers to these questions. But the biggest question of all remains: Can they live with these people? Or are they heading for disaster again?

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  • Pictures of Hollis Woods

    by Patricia Reilly Giff Year Published: Challenging
    Hollis is an orphan who is shuffled from foster home to foster home despite her heart of gold. When Hollis is placed with a kind but ailing woman she finds herself fighting to keep the home. We learn that Hollis had a family that she loved and lost, but is it too late to get them back?
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  • Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing

    by Judy Blume Year Published: Easy Reading
    Peter, because he's the oldest, must deal with Fudgie's disgusting cuteness, his constant meddling with Peter's stuff, and other grave offenses, one of which is almost too much to bear. All these incidents are presented with the unfailing ear and big-hearted humor of the masterful Judy Blume. Though some of her books for older kids have aroused controversy, the Hatcher brothers and their adventures remain above the fray, where they belong.

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  • The Invention of Hugo Cabret

    by Brian Selznick Year Published: Average
    Orphan, clock keeper, and thief, Hugo lives in the walls of a busy Paris train station, where his survival depends on secrets and anonymity. But when his world suddenly interlocks with an eccentric, bookish girl and a bitter old man who runs a toy booth in the station, Hugo's undercover life, and his most precious secret, are put in jeopardy. A cryptic drawing, a treasured notebook, a stolen key, a mechanical man, and a hidden message from Hugo's dead father form the backbone of this intricate, tender, and spellbinding mystery.

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  • The Sign of the Beaver

    by Elizabeth George Speare Year Published: Average
    Left alone to guard the family's wilderness home in eighteenth-century Maine, a boy is hard-pressed to survive until local Indians teach him their skills.
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  • The Tale of Despereaux

    by Kate DiCamillo Year Published: Easy Reading
    Welcome to the story of Despereaux Tilling, a mouse who is in love with music, stories, and a princess named Pea. It is also the story of a rat called Roscuro, who lives in the darkness and covets a world filled with light. And it is the story of Miggery Sow, a slow-witted serving girl who harbors a simple, impossible wish. These three characters are about to embark on a journey that will lead them down into a horrible dungeon, up into a glittering castle, and, ultimately, into each other’s lives. And what happens then? As Kate DiCamillo would say: Reader, it is your destiny to find out.

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Fiction

  • Amber Brown Is Not a Crayon

    by Paula Danziger Year Published: Average
    Third grade is a sad time for Amber because her best friend Justin is going to move to a distant state.
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  • Chocolate Fever

    by Robert Kimmel Smith Year Published: Average
    Henry Green loved chocolate so much that he ate it at every meal--in the regular ways, like chocolate cookies, chocolate cake, and chocolate milk, and in unusual ways, like chocolate syrup on mashed potatoes and chocolate sprinkles on buttered noodles. His parents loved and indulged him; even his older sister and brother were good to him. One morning he broke out in large, brown, chocolate-smelling spots. The school nurse took him to the hospital where he was diagnosed with “Chocolate Fever.” Henry felt afraid, and he ran away. He was picked up by a kind truck driver who was hijacked just as he convinced Henry to call home. What else can go wrong for Henry? Can Chocolate Fever be cured? Will Henry learn to control his chocolate obsession?

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  • Clementine

    by Sara Pennypacker Year Published: Average
    Eightyearold Clementine is having a disastrous week after some not so good haircuts and being sent to the principal’s office.
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  • Dinosaurs Before Dark

    by Mary Pope Osborne Year Published: Average
    Jack and his younger sister, Annie, find a magic treehouse that takes them back to the time of the dinosaurs.
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  • Dog Diaries: Secret Writings of the WOOF Society

    by Betsy Byars Year Published: Average
    At the first annual meeting of WOOF--Words of Our Friends--several dogs share tales of canines throughout the history of the world.
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  • Findle

    by Andrew Clements Year Published: Average
    Mrs. Granger is notorious among all the fifth grade teachers — for being strict, yes, but mostly for her love of words and of the dictionary. Enter Nick Allen, who, after trying to trick Mrs. Granger into wasting time on the first day of school, has to prepare a report on the history of the dictionary. The research, along with a few other, lucky events, gives him an idea: What if he could invent a new word - call an ordinary ballpoint pen a frindle?
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  • Freckle Juice

    by Judy Blume Year Published: Average
    Andrew wants freckles so badly that he buys Sharon’s freckle recipe for fifty cents.
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  • Gooney Bird Greene

    by Lois Lowry Year Published: Easy Reading
    Gooney loves telling absolutely true stories about herself, including how she got her unusual name.
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  • How to Eat Fried Worms

    by Thomas Rockwell Year Published: Average
    10-year-old Billy must eat 15 worms in 15 days to win a $50 bet, which he intends to spend on a minibike. His friends help him by preparing the worms in a variety of ways to make them more appetizing. This is a disgustingly funny book.
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  • Jake Drake, Bully Buster

    by Andrew Clements Year Published: Average
    Jake Drake is a bully magnet until he decides to take matters into his own hands when Link Baxter, Superbully, moves into the neighborhood.
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  • Judy Moody

    by Megan McDonald Year Published: Average
    Third grader Judy Moody is in a first day of school bad mood until she gets an assignment to create a collage all about herself.
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  • Lunch Money

    by Andrew Clements Year Published: Average
    Greg Kenton has always had a natural talent for making money -- despite the annoying rivalry of his neighbor Maura Shaw. Then, just before sixth grade, Greg makes a discovery: Almost every kid at school has an extra quarter or two to spend almost every day. Multiply a few quarters by a few hundred kids, and for Greg, school suddenly looks like a giant piggy bank. All he needs is the right hammer to crack it open. Candy and gum? Little toys? Sure, kids would love to buy stuff like that at school. But would teachers and the principal permit it? Not likely. But how about comic books? Comic books might work. Especially the chunky little ones that Greg writes and illustrates himself. Because everybody knows that school always encourages reading and writing and creativity and individual initiative, right?
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  • Muggie Maggie

    by Beverly Cleary Year Published: Average
    Maggie doesn’t want to learn cursive writing until she discovers that knowing how to read cursive makes a difference.
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  • Stink: The Incredible Shrinking Kid

    by Megan McDonald Year Published: Average
    The shortest kid in the second grade, James Moody, also known as Stink, learns all about the shortest president of the United States, James Madison.
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  • The Chocolate Touch

    by Patrick Skene Catling Year Published: Average
    The Chocolate Touch is about a boy who loves chocolate. The boy found a coin and traded it in for a box of chocolate. There was only one piece of chocolate and when he was finished eating the chocolate, everything he touched turned to chocolate. One day he kisses his mom...

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  • The Gadget War

    by Betsy Duffey Year Published: Average
    When eight year old Kelly Sparks meets up with Albert Einstein Jones, the rivalry between the two escalates into a full scale gadget war.
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  • The Legend of Spud Murphy

    by Eoin Colfer Year Published: Average
    The Woodman brothers spend the summer at the library under the watchful eyes of the fearsome Mrs. Murphy.
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  • The Littles

    by John Lawrence Peterson Year Published: Average
    The Littles, tiny people who live within the walls of the Biggs’ house are afraid of mice.
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  • The Toothpaste Millionaire

    by Jean Merrill Year Published: Average
    Rufus Mayflower is a kid with a great business sense and imagination. When he decides that toothpaste costs too much, he starts his own toothpaste making business with local kids. From his meager beginnings with re-used baby food jars up to a fully professional operation with stockholders and a tube-filling machine, he rakes in the cash and confounds the leaders of the pharmaceutical industry with his methods.
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Roald Dahl Author Study

  • Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

    by Roald Dahl Year Published: Challenging
    The gates of Willy Wonka's famous chocolate factory are opening at last--and only five children will be allowed inside.

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  • Fantastic Mr. Fox

    by Roald Dahl Year Published: Average
    Mr. Fox is surrounded! He's going to have to come up with a truly fantastic plan to dig himself out of trouble this time.

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  • George's Marvelous Medicine

    by Roald Dahl Year Published: Average
    In a typical Dahl book, a boy named George does away with his nasty grandmother by giving her a concoction that he brews from a mixture that includes shampoo, shaving cream and floor polish.

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  • James and the Giant Peach

    by Roald Dahl Year Published: Average
    When magic touches an old peachtree, strange things start happening. A giant peach grows as large as a house, and when James crawls inside, the adventure begins.

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  • The BFG

    by Roald Dahl Year Published: Challenging
    The BFG is one of Dahl's most loveable character creations. Whether galloping off with Sophie nestled into the soft skin of his ear to capture dreams as though they were exotic butterflies; speaking his delightful, jumbled, squib-fangled patois; or whizzpopping for the Queen, he leaves an indelible impression of bigheartedness.

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  • The Magic Finger

    by Roald Dahl Year Published: Easy Reading
    The Gregg family loves hunting, but their eight-year-old neighbor can't stand it. After countless pleas for them to stop are ignored, she has no other choice -- she has to put her magic finger on them. Now the Greggs are a family of birds, and like it or not, they're going to find out how it feels to be on the other end of the gun.

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  • The Twits

    by Roald Dahl Year Published: Average
    Mr. and Mrs. Twit hate almost everything, including their trained monkeys, the Muggle -Wumps. But now the Muggle-Wumps want revenge.

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  • The Witches

    by Roals Dahl Year Published: Average
    This Roald Dahl classic tells the scary, funny and imaginative tale of a seven-year-old boy who has a run-in with some real-life witches! Witches, as our hero learns, hate children. With the help of a friend and his somewhat-magical grandmother, our hero tries to expose the witches before they dispose of him.

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Non-Fiction

  • Afraid of the Water

    by No Author Text Year Published: Average
    Just when you thought it was safe to go into the water, Bearport Publishing brings you a new series about the terrifying animals that lurk in the ocean’s depths! Fascinating information and stunning photographs will keep kids engaged as they learn about the natural habitat, physical characteristics, diets, and behavior of these extremely dangerous—and sometimes deadly—creatures.
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  • Football Heroes Making a Difference

    by No Author Text Year Published: Average
    Discover how football’s biggest stars make an impact on and off the field in Football Heroes Making a Difference. Kids will follow their favorite players as they break NFL records and win Super Bowls while also donating time and money to help improve the lives of less-fortunate children and adults. "Colorful photographs show not only football action shots, but also portray the player both as a youth and as an adult volunteering... libraries needing updated football biographies for this age group will welcome this new slant." —School Library Journal
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  • Fossil Hunters

    by No Author Text Year Published: Average
    Kids will go on a real-life adventure as they join scientists on the hunt for dinosaur fossils! Students won't just learn about science, they will see science in action as they learn the techniques paleontologists use to find prehistoric fossils.
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  • Going Green

    by No Author Text Year Published: Easy Reading
    People around the world are going green! In this eco-friendly new series, children will discover the creative and technologically innovative ways people are protecting Earth and its precious resources. Each title explains a high-interest topic using clear, easy-to-understand text.
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  • No Backbones! Insects

    by No Author Text Year Published: Average
    Children are about to discover that in the world of insects, almost anything is possible! Some of these tiny creatures jump 20 times the length of their bodies. Others fly through the air at more than 35 miles per hour (56 kph). Some insects can kill people. Others just want to drink their blood. In this beautifully designed introduction to insects, large, eye-popping photos and clear, grade-appropriate text will engage emergent readers as they learn about the natural habitat, physical characteristics, diet, and behavior of these unique invertebrates.
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  • Smart Animals

    by No Author Text Year Published: Average
    Animals can be clever! In these informative narrative books, children will discover that many human characteristics of intelligence also are found in animals. From pigs, crows, and chimpanzees, to dolphins, elephants, and parrots, each book follows the fact-based anecdotes of different animals to show how scientists test their intelligence—with stunningly smart results.
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  • Super-Sized

    by No Author Text Year Published: Average
    Discover the biggest, tallest, heaviest, and simply most amazing animals on earth in this beautifully designed series that examines the largest animals in the world! Children will love the large, colorful photos, easy-to-read text, and fascinating facts—all designed to grab emerging readers.
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Great Mysteries

Fantasy

  • Anyone But Me

    by Nancy Krulik Year Published: Average
    Katie Carew wishes she was someone else other than herself when switcheroo! ­she finds her wish coming true.
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  • Charoltte's Web

    by E.B. White Year Published: Challenging
    The story of a little girl named Fern who loves a little pig named Wilbur and of Wilbur's dear friend, Charlotte A. Cavatica, a beautiful, large grey spider who lives with Wilbur in the barn.
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  • Punished

    by David Lubar Year Published: Challenging
    Logan isn't grounded. But he is being punished - by a weird old guy in the reference section who seems to have a little more magic than most librarians. Now Logan's in big trouble with his parents, his teachers, and even his best friend, Benedict! Why? Because he's out of control, spouting puns left and right, getting on everybody's last nerve. To end this vocabulary voodoo, Logan must complete three quests in record time, fnding some of the wackiest word combos known to...
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  • The Borrowers

    by Mary Norton, Beth Krush, and Joe Krush Year Published: Average
    Have you ever wondered where all those little lost things go to in a house? All the bottle tops and pins and needles and string and matchboxes and reels of cotton and a hundred and one other things? Find out when you read The Borrowers.
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  • The Hidden Stairs and the Magic Carpet

    by Tony Abbott Year Published: Average
    Eric, Julie and Neal discover a magical staircase that leads to the magical land of Droon.
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  • The Magic Finger

    by Roald Dahl Year Published: Average
    A duck hunting family learns a lesson when an eightyearold girl turns her magic finger on them.
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  • Trolls Go Home

    by Alan MacDonald Year Published: Easy Reading
    When the Trolls move next door to the Priddles, both families find the other strange, which causes many misunderstandings.
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  • Tuck Everlasting

    by Natalie Babbitt Year Published: Challenging
    The Tuck family is confronted with an agonizing situation when they discover that a ten-year-old girl and a malicious stranger now share their secret about a spring whose water prevents one from ever growing any older.
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Mystery

  • A to Z Mysteries (Series)

    by Ron Roy Year Published: Average
    Great Mystery Series
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  • Bunnicula

    by Deborah and James Howe Year Published: Average
    In the depths of the movie theater, the Monroes come across an interesting little stranger whom they decide to take home. This new guest - an adorable little bunny named Bunnicula - is not welcomed well by the family's cat - Chester - who believes that Bunnicula is actually a vampire bunny! Now with the help of a friend, Harold the Dog, Chester must convince the Monroes that Bunnicula is a threat to the household before it's too late!
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  • Cam Jansen and the Chocolate Fudge Mystery

    by David A. Adler Year Published: Average
    When Cam Jansen and her friend Eric uncover a mystery while selling fudge door to door to raise money for the local library, Cam uses her photographic memory to foil a crime.
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  • Encyclopledia Brown: Boy Detective

    by Donald J. Sobol Year Published: Challenging
    The first in a series of detective stories in which the reader is challenged to match wits with the ten-year-old mastermind of Idaville's war on crime.
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  • Harriet the Spy

    by Louise Fitzhugh, Louise Year Published: Challenging
    Precocious, overpriviledged Harriet darts around her Manhattan neighborhood ferreting out the "scoop" on the moving scene.
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  • Nancy Drew: Sleepover Sleuths

    by Carolyn Keene Year Published: Average
    Nancy Drew investigates the disappearance of a doll at a sleepover party.
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  • Nate the Great (Series)

    by Marjorie W. Sharmat Year Published: Average
    Great Mystery Series
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  • Sly the Sleuth and the Pet Mysteries

    by Donna Jo Napoli and Robert Furrow Year Published: Average
    Sly the Sleuth, also known as Sylvia, solves three mysteries for her friends and neighbors, all involving pets, through her detective agency.
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  • The Absent Author

    by Ron Roy Year Published: Average
    Dink Duncan and his two friends investigate the kidnapping of a famous mystery author, Wallis Wallace.
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  • The Case of Hermie the Missing Hamster

    by James Preller Year Published: Average
    With the help of his Top Secret Detective Journal and his ace partner, Mila, Jigsaw Jones is hot on the trail of Wingnut’s missing hamster.
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  • Young Cam Jansen (Series)

    by Marjorie W. Sharmat Year Published: Easy Reading
    Great Mystery Series
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Biography

Back to School Author Study

  • The Report Card

    by Andrew Clements Year Published: Easy Reading
    THE REPORT CARD by Andrew Clements illustrated by Brian Selznick Simon & Schuster ISBN: 0689845154 Ages 8-12 176 pages In a family of high achievers, Nora Rowley seems to be the odd one out. While her sister's grades and accomplishments are extraordinary, and her brother's are certainly far from lacking, she brings home a report card full of Ds. For years, Nora has convinced her parents, teachers and friends that she is nothing more than average; her brightest talent is on the soccer field. Nora, in truth, is anything but average. She takes college-level astronomy courses online and taught herself to understand Spanish by watching television. In short, she's a genius, but she hides her abilities from almost everyone because she doesn't want to be singled out. The only person who knows this is the school librarian, who discovers Nora's list of visited websites and sees Nora for what she is. Nora, in turn, confides in Mrs. Byrne. As an experiment, she is purposely scoring low to average on tests in order to show everyone that intelligence is not necessarily equal to your test scores. What she starts, instead, is a revolution.

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Louis Sachar Author Study

  • Holes

    by Louis Sachar Year Published: Challenging
    And so, Stanley Yelnats seems set to serve an easy sentence, which is only fair because he is as innocent as you or me. But Stanley is not going where he thinks he is. Camp Green Lake is like no other camp anywhere. It is a bizarre, almost otherworldly place that has no lake and nothing that is green. Nor is it a camp, at least not the kind of camp kids look forward to in the summertime. It is a place that once held "the largest lake in Texas," but today it is only a scorching desert wasteland, dotted with countless holes dug by the boys who live at the camp.

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  • Marvin Redpost Series

    by Louis Sachar Year Published: Easy Reading
    When Marvin is unfairly accused of being a nose-picker by the class bully, his classmates begin avoiding him. Can he prove his innocence?

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  • Sideways Stories from Wayside School

    by Louis Sachar Year Published: Average
    Wayside School was supposed to be 30 classrooms, one story high; but by mistake it was built straight up 30 stories. And that's not all that's funny here

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  • There's a Boy in the Girl's Bathroom

    by Louis Sachar Year Published: Average
    Bradley Chalkers is a misfit, a liar, and a bully. He doesn't have friend in the world. The kids think he's a monster, and Bradley seems to agree. When he is sent to the new school counselor, she sees the likable Bradley beneath the "monster". But just as she begins to build Bradley's self-confidence, the school board decides to replace her with a computer.

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Newbery Medal Winners

  • Because of Winn Dixie

    by Kate DiCamillo Year Published: Easy Reading
    Because of Winn-Dixie, a big, ugly, happy dog, 10-year-old Opal learns 10 things about her long-gone mother from her preacher father. Because of Winn-Dixie, Opal makes new friends among the somewhat unusual residents of her new hometown, Naomi, Florida. Because of Winn-Dixie, Opal begins to find her place in the world and let go of some of the sadness left by her mother's abandonment seven years earlier. With her newly adopted, goofy pooch at her side, Opal explores her bittersweet world and learns to listen to other people's lives.
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  • Bridge to Terabithia

    by Katherine Patterson Year Published: Average
    Jess Aarons had to be the Fastest runner at Lark Creek Elementary School, the best, but when he was challenged by Leslie Burke, a girl, that was just the beginning of a new season in Jess's life. Leslie and her parents were new comers to the rural community where Jess Lived, and were thought to be a bit odd, for they didn't even own a TV, though their house was filled with books. Some-what to Jess's surprise, he and Leslie became friends, and the worlds of imagination and learning that she opened to him changed him for ever. It was Leslie's idea to create Terabithia, their secret Kingdom in the woods where they reigned supreme. There no enemy - not their teacher Monster Mouth Meyers, their schoolmates Gary Fulcher and Janice Avery, Jess's Four sisters, or even Jess's own fears and Leslie's imaginary foes - could defeat them. The Legacy that Leslie finally brought to Jess enabled him to cope with the unexpected tragedy that touched them all.
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  • Bud, Not Buddy

    by Christopher Paul Curtis Year Published: Average
    Ten-year-old Bud Caldwell leads the life of an orphaned young boy living in the 1930s near Chicago, Illinois. The story begins when he is still six years old, lives at home with his mother, and struggles with not knowing his father. Bud's mom and he have an enjoyable life together, spending time doing things like reading from his favorite book, 20,000 Leaks Under the Sea, also known as 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne. Finding his mother dead, after a few days of her being "sick" changes Bud's life forever, however, as he is sent to an orphanage, which he calls "The Home." It is here that he meets Bugs, his best friend.
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  • Holes

    by Louis Sachar Year Published: Challenging
    Stanley is just a regular kid until he is found responsible for a crime he didn't commit. We learn about a curse that has been in his family for several generations. His bad luck lands Stanley in a very strange correctional camp in the Texas desert. The warden has all the inmates digging holes in a dry lake bed. The story weaves interesting tall tales from local history and Stanley's family. The relationships among the juveniles in the camp are interesting to follow. Stanley finds a good friend, treasure, and learns to like himself.
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  • Kira-Kira

    by Cynthia Kadohata Year Published: Average
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  • Maniac Magee

    by Jerry Spinelli Year Published: Average
    After his parents die, Jeffrey Lionel Magee's life becomes legendary, as he accomplishes athletic and other feats which awe his contemporaries.

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  • My Side of the Mountain

    by Jean Craighead George Year Published: Challenging
    Every kid thinks about running away at one point or another; few get farther than the end of the block. Young Sam Gribley gets to the end of the block and keeps going--all the way to the Catskill Mountains of upstate New York. There he sets up house in a huge hollowed-out tree, with a falcon and a weasel for companions and his wits as his tool for survival. In a spellbinding, touching, funny account, Sam learns to live off the land, and grows up a little in the process. Blizzards, hunters, loneliness, and fear all battle to drive Sam back to city life. But his desire for freedom, independence, and adventure is stronger.
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  • Sarah, Plain and Tall

    by Patricia MacLachlan Year Published: Easy Reading
    Sarah, Plain and Tall is a tale set in the late 19th century. It is about a widowed midwestern farmer with two children, Anna and Caleb. The farmer advertises for a wife. When Sarah arrives she is homesick for Maine, especially for the ocean which she misses greatly. The children fear that she will not stay, and when she goes off to town alone, young Caleb, whose mother died during childbirth, is stricken with the fear that she has gone for good.
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  • Shiloh

    by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor Year Published: Easy Reading
    When 11-year-old Marty Preston chances upon a mistreated beagle pup in his hometown of Friendly, West Virginia, he is not prepared for the ethical questions he has to face. Should he return the dog to its owner, only to have the animal abused again? Should he tell his parents? Should he steal food to help the poor creature?
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  • The Sign of the Beaver

    by Elizabeth George Speare Year Published: Average
    Left alone to guard the family's wilderness home in eighteenth-century Maine, a boy is hard-pressed to survive until local Indians teach him their skills.
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  • The Whipping Boy

    by Sid Fleischman Year Published: Average
    Jemmy, once a poor boy living on the streets, now lives in a castle. As the whipping boy, he bears the punishment when Prince Brat misbehaves, for it is forbidden to spank, thrash, or whack the heir to the throne. The two boys have nothing in common and even less reason to like one another. But when they find themselves taken hostage after running away, they are left with no choice but to trust each other.
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Poetry

  • Chicken Soup with Rice

    by Maurice Sendak Year Published: Average
    Rhyme your way through the year with this exciting book of monthly poetry.
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  • I Ain't Gonna Paint No More

    by David Catrow Year Published: Easy Reading
    Sing along to "It ain't gonna rain no more" and enjoy this child's creativity!
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  • The Giving Tree

    by Shel Silverstein Year Published:
    A young boy grows into manhood and old age experiencing the love and generosity of a tree which gives to him without thought of return.
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  • Where the Sidewalk Ends

    by Shel Silverstein Year Published: Challenging
    Silverstein reveals his genius for reaching kids with silly words and simple pen-and-ink drawings. What child can resist a poem called "Dancing Pants" or "The Dirtiest Man in the World"? Each of the 130 poems is funny in a different way, or touching ... or both.

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Jerry Spinelli Author Study

  • Crash

    by Jerry Spinelli Year Published: Challenging
    This is the tale of cocky seventh-grade super-jock Crash Coogan, who got his nickname the day he used his first football helmet to knock his cousin Bridget flat on her backside. And he has been running over people ever since, especially Penn Webb, the dweeby, vegetarian Quaker kid who lives down the block. Through the eyes of Crash, readers get a rare glimpse into the life of a bully in this unforgettable story about stereotypes and the surprises life can bring.

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  • Fourth Grade Rats

    by Jerry Spinelli Year Published: Easy Reading
    Third graders are known as "angels;" fourth graders are misbehaving, rebellious "rats." Suds doesn't want to be a rat, but his friend Joey makes it look so cool and grown-up. And when Joey starts to impress the girl Suds has a crush on, Suds goes on a rampage. But being a rat has its consequences...

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  • Loser

    by Jerry Spinelli Year Published: Average
    Donald Zinkoff is one of the greatest kids you could ever hope to meet. He laughs easily, he likes people, he loves school, he tries to rescue lost girls in blizzards, he talks to old ladies. The only problem is, he's a loser. Until fourth grade, Zinkoff's uncontrollable giggling in class, sloppy handwriting, horrible flute playing, bad grades, clumsiness, and ineptitude at sports go largely unnoticed. When he blows a race for his team, however, his transition to loserdom is complete.

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  • Picklemania

    by Jerry Spinelli Year Published: Easy Reading
    Plumstead Middle School is full of secret plans. Eddie is on a mission to bulk up--he's sick of being the skinniest, scrawniest, runtiest kid in school. Sunny is plotting something that will keep the school bullies from ever bothering her again. Salem is trying to figure out who sent her that mysterious valentine message in the school newspaper. And Pickles has been building his greatest invention yet--and it's almost time to unveil it.

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  • The Library Card

    by Jerry Spinelli Year Published: Average
    These four short stories follow children with a problem. One is a shoplifter and vandal; one is not allowed to watch her beloved TV; one is homeless and living in a car; and one is in a hijacked bookmobile. A blank, blue library card mysteriously appears somewhere in each story, and it manages to make things better every time.

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  • Tooter Pepperday

    by Jerry Spinelli Year Published: Easy Reading
    Tooter is not happy about moving to her aunt's farm with her family, and she is determined to be miserable the entire time they are there. When she is asked to care for an egg from a hen that keeps smashing her nest, Tooter sees it as just another dumb farm chore. But when the hatching time arrives, Tooter is transformed by the miracle of birth.

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  • Wringer

    by Jerry Spinelli Year Published: Challenging
    Palmer LaRue lives in fear of his tenth birthday. At the town "Family Fest," a pigeon shooting contest ends the festivities, and boys ten and above must wring the necks of pigeons who are not killed. Palmer does not want to become a wringer, but he also doesn't want to alienate his friends, who consider it a rite of passage. Then one day, a pigeon lands outside Palmer's bedroom window, ...and Palmer lets it in.

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Poetry

Historical Fiction