Below is a list of our Book Club choices for grades 1 - 3. Ask any librarian for more information, or click here to see discussion questions for these books!
If you like supernatural horror stories, you're in luck because there are finally books about the undead for kids! Whether you like the all-out fright of kids being chased by rotting zombies or more of a kid-zombie-fighter story, check out the books below.
Dead City by James Ponti - Molly goes to a special science school in New York City and spends her free time hanging out in the city morgue (her mom used to work there), but she still isn't prepared for the information that zombies exist...and that she is a perfect candidate for a secret zombie-protection organization called Omega. As she hones her zombie-fighting skills, she learns more about the history of the undead (they don't like to be called zombies) in New York City and discovers her family's secret connection to Omega. A fun, modern take on zombies that's full of action.
Gravediggers: Mountain of Bones by Christopher Krovatin - The sixth grade is on a camping trip, but for Ian it's a chance to find the bodies of the dance troupe who supposedly disappeared in the area. When Ian leaves the group, his quiet friend PJ and the class brain, Kendra, follow him and are pulled deeper and deeper into the woods, even as they try to find their way back to their classmates. The trio finds refuge in an abandoned cabin, and a journal left by one of the missing dancers, a clue that seems irrelevant once a horde of zombies stumbles out of the woods--straight toward their cabin. A satisfying choice for horror movie fans.
It's 1958 and Marlee Nisbett is attending junior high in Little Rock, Arkansas, one year after the Little Rock Nine. Marlee has always found it difficult to speak, but her best friend Sally McDaniels seems to do all the talking for her. While Marlee finds a way to manage her anxiety through reciting prime numbers, she is assigned a group project and will have to stand up in front of the entire class. Marlee's partner, a new student named Liz, is encouraging and quite determined to help Marlee speak. The two girls begin to meet at the local zoo to practice for their project and quickly become close friends.
Then one day Liz does not show up to school and Marlee's teacher announces that Liz will not be returning for the rest of the school year. Soon there are murmurs among classmates that Liz was actually attending the segregated junior high school despite not being white. Devastated, Marlee sets out to locate Liz in order to find out the truth and to bring back her new friend. As a result, Marlee soon becomes involved in the local movement of the Women's Emergency Committee to reopen the Little Rock schools.
Set amid a turbulent time in the struggle for integration, The Lions of Little Rock by author Kristin Levine is already on many top ten lists for the year.
Whenever a former Newberry-winning author releases a new book, librarians sit up and take notice. When that Newberry winner is the author of A Drowned Maiden's Hair (a book both Miss Kiera and Miss Elisabeth love!) we have to talk about it. Laura Amy Schilitz, author of the Newberry-winning Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! has come out with a new book, and librarians around the country are buzzing - Splendors and Glooms is a dark, creepy, fantastical thriller.
Gaspare Grisini is the best puppeteer London has ever seen. With the help of his overworked, underfed orphan assistants, Lizzie and Parsefell, he puts on a daily puppet show in Hyde Park. A rich child named Clara Wintermute begs her father to let the puppeteer perform at her 12th birthday party. Gaspare Grisini leaves with his orphans after the party - and Clara disappears.
As her frantic parents try to locate their missing daughter, Lizzie and Parsefell discover a horrifying secret. Grisini is a wizard, an evil one, and there's a new puppet in his theater that will send Lizzie and Parsefell out of London and into a trap set by Grisini's oldest rival, a witch bent on terrifying revenge.
It's that time of year again- school is back in session, football is on tv, and Fantasy Fridays return to Darien Library!
This week we're talking about a marvelous work of fantasy that could just as easily have taken place in a real medieval kingdom like France or England. The False Prince by Jennifer A. Nielsen contains no magic, no dragons, and no wizards. Instead, it's a twisty, turning, suprise-a-minute tale of treachery and treason in the imaginary kingdom of Carthya.
Sage is a cheeky orphan of 14 content with his life as a petty thief when he is suddenly purchased by the mysterious Lord Connor. Taken in secrecy to Lord Connor's estate, Sage meets 4 other orphans who all look like him. They have been chosen because they resemble the King of Carthya's missing son. At the end of two weeks, whichever orphan has learned to act the most like the Prince will be taken to the castle and introduced as the long-lost heir. The other three boys will be killed. Can Sage survive the next two weeks and become The False Prince?
First in her Ascendence Trilogy, Nielsen has written one of my favorite books of the year. Highly recommended for fans of courts, kings, Camelot, and Meghan Whalen Turner's The Thief.
Super is a book about a young boy named Daniel and his friends*, His friends have super powers. In the previous book, Powerless, they defeat the Shroud...or do they? Daniel now thinks he is becoming the Shroud and there is a new Plunket in town. There are also new villains, called Shades. Read Super to find out if Daniel and his friends defeat the Shades and give Noble Green's powers back.
I think this is a great book and I would definitely recommend it. It is suitable for ages 9-12 and I think it is more of a boy book. It is a great fantasy book. So, if you like fantasy, this is a good choice. If you want a book full of adventure, excitement, super pwoers, and Shades, read Super.
*by Matthew Cody
Librarians like to talk about good books. In fact, its one of our favorite ways to pass the time! Right now, the Children's Librarians are talking about a great new work of fiction for our 4-6th graders. If you like mysteries and independent kids, then the we have a new book for you -Three Times Lucky by Shelia Turnage.
Three Times Lucky comes with a lot of Newberry buzz and starred reviews. It's a book about luck and a book about mysteries - three mysteries, in fact. The main character, Moses "Mo" LeBeau washed up on shore as a tiny baby during the last major hurricane to hit the town of Tupelo, North Carolina. No one knows who she is or where she came from. That's the first mystery. Mo is adopted by a mysterious man who also came to Tupelo Landing the night of the hurricane. Known as The Colonel, he opens up the only cafe in town with Miss Lana. No one knows who The Colonel is or where he came from either. That's the second mystery.
But the third mystery is the biggest mystery of all. Someone seems to be killing the customers at The Colonel's cafe. With the help of her best friend Dale Earnhardt Johnson III, can Mo find out the connection between herself, The Colonel, and the murders before the next big hurricane comes to Tupelo Landing?
Sometimes in the Children's library, we find books we love so much that we pass them around the office like a special type of candy bar. Last week, Miss Marian talked about one of those books, Liar and Spy. This week, the librarians are talking about Summer of the Gypsy Moths!
Summer of the Gypsy Moths is a new middle-grade book by beloved IRead author Sara Pennypacker. Sara's Clementine series was already a huge favorite of the Children's librarians, but her new book is for older readers, grades 4-6. It follows the adventures of two very different girls thrown together under very difficult circumstances.
Stella is living with her Great-Aunt Louise for the summer in a big house on Cape Cod. An independent survivor, Stella won't be at Louise's for too long, she's sure. As soon as her mother stops wandering, Stella will go home. Angel is also an independent survivor, and she's also living with Louise. She's a foster child, but she's sure won't be at Louise's for too long either. As soon as her aunt finds work, Angel will go home. When tragedy comes unexpectedly, will Stella and Angel be able to work together and survive?
A one-eared boy, pirates, and a family secret...if you have a taste for adventure and the unusual, check out The Unfortunate Son by Constance Leeds.
Luc has always sensed that his father despises him and prefers his younger brothers, but he's never known why. His father's cruelty drives him away, to the small, but welcoming cottage of a fisherman, Pons, and his family. In the seaside town of Mouette, Luc finds a warm home and great skill as a fisherman (Pons swears Luc's presence seems to draw the fish in). He forms a close relationship to Beatrice, the beautiful daughter of a disgraced knight, and spends his days with her and his beloved dog, Cadeau.
One day while they're out fishing, Luc is captured by buccaneers and sold as a slave in Tunisia. His flaw, having only one ear, makes him less valuable, except to an old surgeon, who begins to teach him Arabic and medical skills. Luc becomes a part of Salah's household, joining the grumpy dwarf servant, Bes, who loves teasing and harassing the new boy. Although, Luc adjusts to life in northern Africa, he can never forget his life in Mouette and longs to return. Back in France, Beatrice and Pons uncover the secret of Luc's past and use this knowledge to try to bring him home.
This is a great book for older readers (5th grade and up) who enjoy complex, character-based tales. A super choice for middle school students who need to read fulfill a genre requirement--it's historical fiction!
Cornelia Funke's new novel Ghost Knight was just released. One of our Kid Galley Bloggers wanted to share their review of this new fantasy read.
I loved Ghost Knight because it combined medieval fantasy and ghosts. I thought it was well written, and the characters developed very nicely.