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Youth Fiction Review: Soar by Joan Bauer

Soar, the latest novel by the Newbery Honor-winning Joan Bauer, is a smartly narrated feel-good sports story about the power of perseverance and optimism. 12-year-old Jeremiah hasn't had it easy, but he's learned to turn adversity into opportunity. His mother abandoned him when he was just 9 months...

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Youth Fiction Review: A Blind Guide to Stinkville by Beth Vrabel

12-year-old Alice isn't thrilled about moving from Seattle, Washington to Sinkville, South Carolina. In Seattle, Alice never thought twice about the fact that she was born with albinism and severely impaired vision. Everyone--childhood playmates, kids at school, neighbors--already knew about her...

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Picture Book Review: The Wheels on the Tuk Tuk by Kabir Sehgal & Surishtha Sehgal

The classic song "The Wheels on the Bus" is refreshingly reworked in this cheerful adaptation. Tuk tuks (pronounced "took tooks") are a common mode of public transportation in India. The Wheels on the Tuk Tuk allows young readers to explore Indian culture with a journey through a bustling, friendly...

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Youth Nonfiction Review: Breakthrough!: How 3 People Saved 'Blue Babies' and Changed Medicine Forever by Jim Murphy

In 1944, Dr. Alfred Blalock, Dr. Helen Taussig, and research assistant Vivien Thomas boldly developed a successful surgery to treat a life-threatening congenital heart defect (Tetralogy of Fallot).  Author Jim Murphy, a celebrated and masterful veteran of narrative nonfiction, digs beneath the...

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Youth Fiction Review: Goodbye Stranger by Rebecca Stead

As Bridget and her two best friends (Tab and Emily) learn, 7th grade is a whole different world. Bridge, Tab, and Em have been friends forever, and protect their friendship fiercely with a strict "no fighting" rule. But junior high is a time of discovery and change. Em finds a place amid the...

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Picture Book Review: Zen Socks by Jon Muth

Stillwater, the giant panda, returns for another heartwarming adventure with pals Leo and Molly. While the trio dreams and plays together, Stillwater gently imparts lessons about perseverance, patience, kindness, and sharing that are folded into intriguing tales from the Zen tradition. At turns...

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Picture Book Review: Toys Meet Snow by Emily Jenkins

While their Little Girl is away on a vacation, three special toys venture outside to experience (and enjoy!) snow for the very first time. Toys Meet Snow is a sweet picture book that stars the charming cast from the author's beloved chapter books (Toys Go Out, Toy Dance Party, and Toys Come Home)....

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Winning Entries of the 2015 Pumpkin Decorating Contest

62 creative kids entered our 2015 Decorate-a-Pumpkin contest. Visitors at the Main Library voted for their favorite entries in each age group during the week of October 20 - 27. After tallying almost 600 ballots, we are pleased to announce this year's winners. In the Grades K-2 category, first...

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Picture Book Review: The Octopuppy by Martin McKenna

Edgar longs for a pet dog. Instead, he gets Jarvis: an enterprising, creative octopus with eight gangly arms. Jarvis only wants to please Edgar, but Edgar is so fixated on wanting a dog that he doesn't recognize Jarvis' unique, clever, and loyal spirit. When Jarvis goes missing, Edgar has a change...

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Scary Story Books for Older, Bolder Children

Halloween is coming. Do you have enough spooky stories? Check out these books—if you dare!   The Book That Eats People by John Perry A creepy book devours unlucky readers. Will you be next?   A Child’s Guide to Common Household Monsters by James Otis Thach Discover the monsters in your...

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