Roger, a long sausage dog, is looking for more meaning from life. When life hands him potatoes, he creates a French fry stand, and his French fries become famous around the world. But Roger worries that people only love him for his fries, and he looks for even more from his life. When Roger meets Charlotte the Corn Cob Queen, a whole new adventure begins. The illustrations are charming, and this book has been a hit with every school age group I've read it with. A recipe is included at the back of the book.
Adults who love Alexander McCall Smith's Number 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series will be thrilled to introduce their children to Botswana's Precious Ramotswe. When items start to disappear from students' lunches, Precious is on the case, even defending the boy who everyone at first assumes to be the culprit. Unfamiliar words are defined and pronunciation guides are given. Illustrations only add to the charm of the story.
Oluwalase Babatunde Benson is the Number One car spotter in his tiny African village, hence his nickname, No. 1. (In his free time, No. 1 and his grandfather like to identify cars by their sounds before they drive past). While he knows that things like skyscrapers, tap water, and electricity exists, in his village they can only dream of such luxuries. When the village's market cart breaks down, No. 1 comes up with a plan that saves the village and allows them to get to the market to sell their goods, involving an old broken-down Toyota Camry.
Mac Barnett, author of the Brixton Brothers chapter book series, offers up an unusual look into how a book is written and illustrated. He writes about a girl named Chloe who is wandering through the forest. When illustrator Adam Rex decides to draw a dragon instead of the lion Mac has written about, Mac calls him out and fires him. He hires a new illustrator, Hank, who draws a lion which promptly eats Adam.
The characters from Gordon Korman’s Swindle are back in Zoobreak, a novel about children fighting for animal rights. When the kids visit a floating zoo, they discover that the animals are living in deplorable conditions and decide to break out the animals and bring them to another zoo. A subplot featuring the disappearance of a main character’s pet monkey brings excitement to the story. This moving, yet funny story is recommended for 5th grade and up, and younger for reading aloud.
Gooney Bird Greene loves to be the center of attention (just like most second graders) and only tells absolutely true stories. Gooney Bird is an excellent storyteller and tells a new story to her classroom every day. What's interesting is how Gooney Bird shows that words can mean different things than you might expect, for example, how Gooney Bird moved to her new home from China in a minivan. A good book for second grade students who are ready for short chapter books.
5 year old Lotta becomes angry with her mother when assigned to wear a scratchy sweater. She cuts the sweater up and runs away to find a new home. Her next door neighbor lets her set up a little house in the backyard, and Lotta decides she will live there forever. Lotta ends up going home in the end, of course! I like this short chapter book by the author of Pippi Longstocking, because I think so many children can relate to Lotta's anger.
Recommended for 1st to 3rd grade students, younger for reading aloud.
Stuart is getting ready to start the third grade and is very nervous. Will he make any friends? He decides he needs a cape to make things better and makes one by stapling together his dad's ties (not recommended!). Stuart has several grand adventures and by the end of the book is all ready to start school. This is by the same author as the Clementine series. Stuart is imaginative and uses his creativity wisely. This book has been re-released in 2010 as "The Amazing World of Stuart." Recommended for 2nd-4th grade students.
In The Princess Plot, a German bestseller, Jenna is recruited to play the role of Princess Malena of Scandia in a new movie. She becomes suspicious when she finds herself impersonating the princess at a public event. What has happened to the real princess? A subplot involving rebels looking for equal rights in Scandia adds to the excitement. Recommended for 5th grade and up.
In the fifth book of their adventures, Annie discovers that birds are building a nest on her porch. Every day, Annie and Henry check on the nest to see who lives there. They discover a robin and five eggs residing in the nest! What will happen as Annie continues to check the nest?
In the Sisters 8 series, Annie is the oldest of the Huit Family Octuplets. The eight girls and their eight cats discover that their parents have gone missing on New Year’s Eve, and embark on a mysterious adventure to find their parents.
Elska is the first book in the Horse Diaries series. The story starts with the birth of a new foal, Elska, and the story is told in Elska’s voice. Elska is an Icelandic horse, living around 1000 AD in Iceland. The story follows Elska as she meets humans who she learns to love. The story is filled with fascinating facts about horses and Iceland and teaches new vocabulary.
In the first novel of this series, amateur detectives Sophie, Margaret, and Rebecca (the Red Blazer Girls) band together to discover the location of the Ring of Rocamadour. They meet Ms. Harriman, who delivers the challenge to the three—they must follow clues and solve puzzles to discern the secret of the Ring. The puzzles are given to the reader to try to solve before reading ahead.
This humorous chapter book takes us in the life of 3rd grade student Sophie Simon. While Sophie is incredibly smart, she struggles with making friends. Sophie finds herself solving problems for her classmates that they have with their parents. The book includes “Sophie Simon’s Encyclopedia of Things She Can’t Believe You Don’t Know Already” and a recipe for Madagascar Ground Boa Taffy. For students in 3rd thru 5th grade.
This interactive history adventure is part of Capstone Press’ You Choose series. You the readers choose whether to experience a Viking raid, serve in a Viking army, or fight the last battles of the Vikings, with 24 possible endings. This book is packed with adventure and the unknown. Check out other You Choose books such as Life as a Knight,
The picture books series about Pinkalicious is available as part of the “I Can Read” series. This Level 1 reader tells about Pinkalicious’ time at school. While Pinkalicious enjoys school, she thinks she would enjoy it more if Goldilicious, her unicorn, came to school with her. What will happen when Goldilicious visits the classroom? Kindergarten and 1st grade students will enjoy read about Pinkalicious and Goldilicious.
This series, Ballpark Mysteries, is for both baseball fans and mystery fans. In Fenway Foul-Up, a lucky bat is stolen, and Mike and Kate are on the case. Lots of baseball trivia for those who enjoy baseball. A second book in the series was released simultaneously. For students in 2nd to 4th grade.
This book by Newbery winning author Lois Lowry features Princess Patricia Priscilla, who will soon turn sixteen and choose a suitor to marry. The Princess is bored with her life and disguises herself as Pat, a poor peasant girl. Pat discovers a love for school and is disappointed that she will not be able to continue. This book is filled with alliteration, rhymes, and wordplay.
This installment in the Bad Kitty series which began as a picture book series and then morphed into chapter books, is a look at Bad Kitty’s birthday party. We meet many different breeds of cats all coming to the party bearing gifts, none of which make Bad Kitty happy. Interspersed with scientific facts about cats, this heavily illustrated book is laugh out loud funny, and is recommended for 3rd grade and up.
This beginning reader is a continuation of the Stinky Face picture book series. The main character, Stinky Face, asks “what if” questions to his mother about going to Kindergarten. The questions get sillier and sillier as the book progresses, including a question about a hungry armadillo and art class.
Dan Gutman (author of "Babe and Me" and "Return of the Homework Machine") offers a humorous look at the lives of elementary age students in The Talent Show. After a tornado rips through the small town of Cape Bluff, Kansas, the residents need a way to raise money to rebuild their town and raise morale. The town decides to put on a talent show, with students from the elementary school providing the talent. Everyone wants to get in on the action, talent or no talent!
This fractured version of "The Princess and the Pea" stars Prince Henrik, who is ready to get married. He wants a girl who likes hockey and camping, plus has a nice smile. He asks his brother, Prince Hans, for advice, and observes his sister-in-law Princess Eva, a sensitive (read: whiny) princess. Henrik decides he wants the very opposite of Princess Eva, and performs the opposite of the typical princess test by putting a full bag of frozen peas under a thin mattress.