Wednesday, November 14, 2018

November Book Picks


LOUISIANA’S WAY HOME, by Kate DiCamillo, is a gem, whether or not you’ve read the previous RAYMIE NIGHTINGALE. This time, Louisiana Elefante narrates her own story, which begins when Granny pulls her out of bed at 3am. They hit the road, leaving behind Louisiana’s pet cat Archie, along with her best two friends, Raymie Clarke and Beverly Tapinski. There is also Buddy, the one-eyed dog. Louisiana begins to believe that Granny does not have her best interests in mind… (MG)

In THE EXTREMELY INCONVENIENT ADVENTURES OF BRONTE METTLESTONE, by Jaclyn Moriarty, the title character has been raised by Aunt Isabelle ever since she was a baby. Her parents left her in Aunt Isabelle’s lobby and went off to have adventures. So when Bronte is ten years old, and she's notified that they've been killed by pirates, she’s not overcome with sadness. But her parents have left an unbreakable will (bordered by fairy cross-stitch), which sends her on a dangerous journey to deliver very specific gifts in very specific ways to her ten other aunts. Moriarty’s smart, inventive fantasies are always chock-full of quirky characters, whether human, water sprite, or evil Whispering Dark Mage. (MG)

Jarrett Krosoczka, author/illustrator of picture books--such as Baghead--and graphic novels for young children, turns to a young adult project with HEY KIDDO, which describes how his life has been shaped by his mother’s addiction. When her bad decisions make life too dangerous for three-year-old Jarrett, the boy is taken in by his grandfather and grandmother, "two incredible parents" who "just happened to be a generation removed.” Krosoczka’s powerful memoir shows how art helps him to make sense of his world, including his unconventional upbringing. (YA)

Picture Books:

In BLUE, Laura Vaccaro Seeger follows up her Newbery Honor Book, GREEN, with the story of a boy and a puppy who grow up/old together. A tender look at how life goes on. The text consists of variations on the word “blue,” and there are subtle die-cuts that add interesting continuity throughout.

HOW TO KNIT A MONSTER, by Annemarie van Haeringen, tells of Greta the goat, who is a very, very good knitter. When she doesn’t pay attention to her work, a wolf jumps off her needles! Things escalate until Greta manages to make things right. An award-winner in Holland, where it was first published.

And, finally, GREEN PANTS, by Kenneth Kraegel, features young Jameson, who only ever wears green pants. Because when he wears them he can do anything. But when he’s asked to be in his cousin's wedding party, it’s with the understanding that he must wear a (black) tuxedo. Will Jameson decide to be in the wedding without his green pants?


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