Saturday, October 24, 2015

Upside Down Magic

Upside Down Magic
By: Sarah Mlynowki, Lauren Myracle, and Emily Jenkins

From New York Times bestselling authors Sarah Mlynowski, Lauren Myracle, and Emily Jenkins comes the hilarious and heartfelt story of a group of magical misfits.

Nory Horace is nine years old. She's resourceful, she's brave, she likes peanut butter cookies. Also, she's able to transform into many different animals. Unfortunately, Nory's shape-shifting talent is a bit wonky. And when she flunks out of her own father's magic academy, Nory's forced to enter public school, where she meets a group of kids whose magic is, well, different.

This new, offbeat series from hit authors Sarah Mlynowski, Lauren Myracle, and Emily Jenkins chronicles the misadventures of Nory and her oddball friends, who prove that upside-down magic definitely beats right side up.

My Take:

It was a pretty cute story about a girl who has less-than-perfect magical gifts and her struggle to accept that it's okay to be different. Sometimes different equals special. It's a great book for 3rd and 4th grade and maybe 5th grade, but I wouldn't recommend it for anyone older. I don't think that there is enough explanation and detail about things like their magic and their world and that would probably make it a difficult read for older children. 

Sunday, October 4, 2015

New This Week!

Here are some of the books that are due to be published this week! See for availability. Recommended age is in parentheses.

  • A Blind Guide to Stinkville by Beth Vrabel - 6 October (8-12)
  • A Tale of Highly Unusual Magic by Lisa Papademetriou - 6 October (8-12)
  • Beatrix Potter and Her Paint Box by David McPhail - 6 October (4-8)
  • Beyond the Pond by Joseph Kuefler (4-8)
  • Book: My Autobiography by John Agard - 6 October (10+)
  • Dream On Amber by Emma Shevah - 6 October (9-12)
  • Freedom's Price (Hidden Histories) by Michaela MacColl and Rosemary Nichols - 6 October (9-12)
  • Happy! by PHarrell Williams - 6 October (3-6)
  • I'm Cool by Kate McMullan with illustrations by Jim McMullan - 6 October (4-8)
  • Ketzel, the Cat Who Composed by Leslea Newman with illustrations by Amy June Bates - 6 October (5-8)
  • Lenny and Lucy by Philip C. Stead with illustrations by Erin E. Stead - 6 October (3-6)
  • Little Penguin Gets Hiccups by Tadgh Bentley - 6 October (4-8)
  • Mixed Me! by Taye Diggs - 6 October (4-8)
  • Pete the Cat and the Bedtime Blues by James Dean and Kimberly Dean - 6 October (4-8)
  • Please, Open This Book! by Adam Legrgaupt with illustrations by Matthew Forsythe - 6 October (4-8)

Banned Books Week - 2014 Top Ten

Here is the Top Ten of the most banned books of 2014.*

1. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie

2. Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi

3. And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell

4. The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison

5. It's Perfectly Normal by Robie Harris

6. Sage by Brian Vaughan and Fiona Staples

7. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

8. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

9. A Stolen Life by Jaycee Dugard

10. Drama by Raina Telgemeier

* Source: American Library Association

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Banned Books Week - The Kite Runner

By Khaled Hosseini

Number 7 most challenged book of 2014*

Reason of challenge: offensive language, unsuited to age group, violence

Amir is the son of a wealthy Kabul merchant, a member of the ruling caste of Pashtuns. Hassan, his servant and constant companion, is a Hazara, a despised and impoverished caste. Their uncommon bond is torn by Amir's choice to abandon his friend amidst the increasing ethnic, religious, and political tensions of the dying years of the Afghan monarchy, wrenching them far apart. But so strong is the bond between the two boys that Amir journeys back to a distant world, to try to right past wrongs against the only true friend he ever had.

The unforgettable, heartbreaking story of the unlikely friendship between a wealthy boy and the son of his father’s servant, The Kite Runner is a beautifully crafted novel set in a country that is in the process of being destroyed. It is about the power of reading, the price of betrayal, and the possibility of redemption; and an exploration of the power of fathers over sons—their love, their sacrifices, their lies.

A sweeping story of family, love, and friendship told against the devastating backdrop of the history of Afghanistan over the last thirty years, The Kite Runner is an unusual and powerful novel that has become a beloved, one-of-a-kind classic.

* Source: American Library Association; Goodreads

Friday, October 2, 2015

Banned Books Week - Saga

By Brian Vaughan and Fiona Staples

Number 6 most challenged book of 2014*

Reason for challenge: anti-family, nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit and unsuited for age group

When two soldiers from opposite sides of a never-ending galactic war fall in love, they risk everything to bring a fragile new life into a dangerous old universe. 

From bestselling writer Brian K. Vaughan, Saga is the sweeping tale of one young family fighting to find their place in the worlds. Fantasy and science fiction are wed like never before in this sexy, subversive drama for adults. 

* Source: American Library Association; Goodreads

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Banned Books Week - It's Perfectly Normal

By Robie Harris

Number 5 most challenged book of 2014*

Reason for challenge: nudity, sex education, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, "alleges it child pornography"

When young people have questions about sex, real answers can be hard to find. Providing accurate, unbiased answers to nearly every imaginable question, from conception and puberty to birth control and AIDS, IT'S PERFECTLY NORMAL offers young people the information they need � now more than ever � to make responsible decisions and to stay healthy. Already used as a trusted resource in twenty-five countries around the world (and translated into twenty-one languages), IT'S PERFECTLY NORMAL marks its tenth anniversary with a thoroughly updated edition that includes the latest information on such topics as birth control, hepatitis, HIV, and adoption, among others. This definitive new edition also reflects the recent input of parents, teachers, librarians, clergy, scientists, health professionals, and young readers themselves.

* Source: American Library Association; Goodreads