Saturday, September 15, 2018

September Book Picks


In WONDERLAND, by Barbara O’Connor, all Mavis Jeeter wants is to live in one place long enough to have a real best friend. But her mom moves the two of them, yet again, to a new job, in another state, as housekeeper for the wealthy Tully family. Luckily, young Rose Tully could use a best friend, too. But the girls are so different. And when Henry, a dog in search of a home, shows up, the girls will need to break plenty of Mrs. Tully’s rules if they want to get Mr. Duffy, the gatekeeper, to adopt a new pet… O’Connor does a great job, the writing reminds me of Kate DiCamillo, and this book will probably be mentioned in Newbery discussions. (MG)

A FESTIVAL OF GHOSTS, by William Alexander is the follow up to A PROPERLY UNHAUNTED PLACE, and it’s just as good as the first. Rosa Ramona Diaz is a ghost appeasement specialist, just like her mom. She and her new friend, Jasper Chevalier, travel around town quieting ghosts and restless spirits. When Rosa begins attending classes at Ingot Public School, the hauntings begin to escalate. To make matters worse, Rosa worries that she's being haunted by the spirit of her dad, and Jasper is determined to reopen the Ingot Renaissance Festival, even though the grounds have been taken over by dueling ghosts. These books champion respect and the power of listening. (MG)

Chapter Book:

TIME JUMPERS, by Wendy Mass, is a new time-travel adventure series, along the lines of THE MAGIC TREEHOUSE books but for less experienced readers. In the first book, STEALING THE SWORD, Chase and Ava find a mysterious old suitcase that magically transports them to King Arthur’s Court. The kids must return the hilt of Excalibur to the king before he fights in the tournament, but an angry man is trying to steal it. There’s lots of action, an intriguing setting, and plenty of illustrations to help new readers stay on track.

Picture Books:

Do “[b]unnies in their hutches" eat orange? How about gorillas and giraffes? In WHO EATS ORANGE? written by Dianne White and illustrated by Robin Page, we see a variety of animals working their way through a veritable rainbow of foods. This early non-fiction book is as fun to read aloud as it is beautiful to look at. Plenty of back matter makes it a great choice for classrooms, but kids will enjoy it just as well on laps and for library story-time.

Want a bouncy, rhyming bedtime book about robots? Give BITTY BOT, by Tim McCanna, illustrated by Tad Carpenter, a try. Follow along, in pitch-perfect rhythm and rhyme, as Bitty Bot, not yet ready to be “tucked in tight,” takes his homemade rocket ship on a trip to the moon. The art adds plenty of details, colors, and goofy moonpeople to ratchet up the fun.

Maybe you’d prefer your bedtime books a bit more dreamlike and magical. In TIME FOR BED, MIYUKI, by Roxane Marie Galliez with illustrations by Seng Soun Ratanavanh, every time her grandfather asks if she’s ready, a little girl finds one more task she needs to complete before she can sleep. But when Miyuki, with Grandfather’s help, has prepared for the Dragonfly Queen, watered her garden, gathered the snails, covered the cat, “danced the last dance of the day,” and taken her bath, she’s finally ready to be tucked in to hear a very special story. Watercolor and colored pencil illustrations are luminous.


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