Saturday, February 21, 2015

I KILL THE MOCKINGBIRD by Paul Acampora.  Roaring Book Press, 2014.  176p.
ISBN 978-1596437425 hc. $16.99   Gr. 6-8   JUV FIC
"I Kill the Mockingbird" is a story about three friends whose love of literature sends them on a quest over summer break to remove all the copies of Harper Lee’s classic book, "To Kill a Mockingbird," from shelves at bookstores and libraries in their town, county and region. Their goal is to generate interest in the book out of respect for their recently deceased English teacher, Mr. Nowak, since they are pretty sure none of their classmates would read it otherwise.  Soon the “I Kill the Mockingbird” movement takes on a life of its own, and Lucy, along with Elena and Michael, might be the only ones who can stop it before others commit crime in the name of literacy. Because the best stories always have multiple subplots, Lucy is also dealing with a mom who's been battling cancer and the dilemma of falling in love with her childhood friend.  Middle schoolers will read the pages off this book.
Jeni Kilpela, Youth Services, Peter White Public Library, Marquette, MI

Monday, February 16, 2015

BEING HENRY DAVID by Cal Armistead.  Chicago, IL: Albert Whitman & Company,
2013. 304p. ISBN: 978-0-8075-0615-8 hc. $16.99.  Gr.8-12   YA

The narrator, "Hank", doesn't remember anything about his life prior to waking up in Penn Station. The only think he knows is that his only possession is the book "Walden", by Henry David Thoreau. Since he doesn't even remember is own name, he calls himself Henry David and adopts the nickname "Hank."  Since the book is titled, "Walden," he heads off towards Walden Pond in search of himself. As the days go on, he begins to have flashbacks and memories. He becomes even more frightened to face his past as the memories surface.  Where has he come from?  Where is he going?  BEING HENRY DAVID is a very engaging book. It will keep the reader engaged until the end, with many twists and turns.
Melissa Coyne, Patron of the Munising School Public Library

Monday, February 9, 2015

A VIOLIN FOR ELVA by Mary Lyn Ray. Illus. by Tricia Tusa. New York: Houghton
MifflinHarcourt Publishing Company, 2015. 32p. ISBN: 978-0-15-225483-4 hc. $16.99.
Pre-S-Gr.3   E PIC
     This is a wonderful story about how it is never too late to pursue and achieve 
a dream.  Elva hears the violin one day and is so enchanted by it, she wants to make
it her own.  Her parents don't understand, so she uses her imagination during every 
day tasks such as brushing her teeth.  As Elva grows, that magical imagination of 
hers begins to wane; she is a busy adult with a job and responsibilities.  Her love 
for music still sparks inside her, and Elva begins to take small steps towards 
achieving her childhood dream of playing the violin and realizes one is never to 
old to make a dream come true.  Beautiful soft watercolor illustrations tell Elva's 
story and make her music come alive. 
     Emily Cummings, Children's Specialist, Dickinson County Library

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

LEOPARDPOX! by Orna Landau. Illus. by Omer Hoffmann. New York: Houghton Mifflin 
      Harcourt, 2015.  32p. ISBN: 978-0-544-29001-3 hc. $16.99.  PreK-Gr. 3   PIC

      This adorable story is full of imagination and the silly way it can run away
with us no matter what age we are.  Sadie wakes up one morning with symptoms not 
of a cold or flu, but of becoming a leopard cub!  Before her mother knows it, 
Sadie is exhibiting more than symptoms; she is indeed a leopard cub right down to 
her sharp teeth and pointy ears!  The question becomes, "Where can Sadie go to 
be treated for this illness?"  She is passed from the pediatrician to the 
veterinarian to the zoo, until her mother takes charge as only a mother can. 
Through love and patience, Sadie returns to being a little girl again, but is Mom 
growing a tail now, too?!?  
      Emily Cummings, Children's Specialist, Dickinson County Library