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Youth Graphic Nonfiction Review: El Deafo by Cece Bell

Starting a new school is never easy, but it's especially challenging for Cece, who is "severely to profoundly" deaf after a bout of meningitis. Because her new school doesn't offer special classes for children with hearing loss, Cece learns to read lips and is fitted with a bulky but powerful new...

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Picture Book Review: Construction by Sally Sutton

A hard-working, multicultural crew uses a variety of big machines to complete a very special building project: a library! Rhythmic text, driven by strong verbs and onomatopoeia, makes Construction a fun read-aloud. Subtle shifts in perspective allow readers to glimpse different parts of the site as...

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Announcing...the winners of the 2014 Paint-a-Pumpkin contest!

58 crafty kids decorated pumpkins for our 2014 Paint-a-Pumpkin contest. Visitors at the Main Library voted for their favorite pumpkin during the week of October 20 - 26. After tallying over 300 ballots, we are pleased to announce this year's winners. In the Grades K-2 category, Kalani K. takes top...

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Youth Fiction Review: The Blossoming Universe of Violet Diamond by Brenda Woods

11-year-old Violet feels like an outsider in both her hometown and in her own family. Violet's father, who died before she was born, was African-American; her mom and half-sister are white. With her dark hair and skin, Violet doesn't look anything like her mother, half-sister, neighbors, or...

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Picture Book Review: Sophie's Squash by Pat Zietlow Miller

When Sophie meets Bernice at the farmers' market, she knows she's found a forever-friend. There's just one catch: Bernice is a squash. As autumn turns to winter, Bernice begins to change--and Sophie finds a creative way to let their friendship grow. Gentle humor and lots of charm make Sophie's...

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Youth Fiction Review: Leroy Ninker Saddles Up by Kate DiCamillo

Like any respectable cowboy, Leroy Ninker has a hat, boots, and a lasso--the only thing he's missing is a horse. But all of that changes when Leroy decides to take fate in his hands, wrestle it to the ground, and find his dream horse. Leroy Ninker Saddles Up is the first book in a charming new...

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Picture Book Review: The Midnight Library by Kazuno Kohara

The Midnight Library is a quiet, feel-good bedtime book celebrates libraries with a gentle story line about a patient librarian, her three assistant owls, and the visitors who keep them busy all night long.  Bold lines and a striking palette of gold, black, and dark blue lend a retro vibe...

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Youth Nonfiction Review: The Port Chicago 50 by Steve Sheinkin

Did you know that the U.S. Navy practiced segregation during WWII? Due to long-standing policies, African Americans enlistees were barred from combat and leadership roles and allowed to serve only as mess attendants and cargo loaders. At the Port Chicago naval base in the San Francisco Bay, legions...

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Picture Book Review: Stella's Starliner by Rosemary Wells

Stella's sparkling silver home may be small, but it's large enough to hold everything that Stella needs: a sofa that turns into a bed at the touch of a button and two loving parents. Stella is happy and proud to live in her "starliner"--until the neighborhood kids point out that her silver home is...

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Picture Book Review: I Pledge Allegiance by Pat Mora & Libby Martinez

A heartwarming story of the value of U.S. citizenship. Young Libby is learning the Pledge of Allegiance with her school class just as her great-aunt is practicing it for her citizenship ceremony. Children who listen to this book will have several opportunities to hear and practice the Pledge of...

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