31 October 2017

10 Books About Halloween

The Little Green Witch
written by Barbara Barbieri McGrath, images by Martha Alexander

Los Gatos Black on Halloween
written by Marisa Montes, images by Yuyi Morales

Luther's Halloween
written by Cari Meister, images by Valeria Petrone

Minerva Louise on Halloween
written and illustrated by Janet Morgan Stoeke

One Witch
written by Laura Leuck, images by S.D. Schindler

Only a Witch Can Fly
written by Alison McGhee, images by Taeeun Yoo

Over In the Hollow
written by Rebecca Dickinson, images by Stephan Britt

Perfect Pumpkin Pie
written and illustrated by Denys Cazet

Piggie Pie
written by Margie Palatini, illustrated by Howard Fine

written by Kathryn Lasky, illustrated by David Jarvis

24 October 2017

Books I Love: The Dollhouse Murders

The Dollhouse Murders
Betty Ren Wright
I first read this book
in fourth grade, approximately 1986

This book was one of those delicious stories that one person in the class reads and then recommends it to someone else who recommends it to someone else until it seems like everyone you know has devoured it.

The Dollhouse Murders is one of the scariest books I have ever read. It's the story of Amy, a teen girl who has to look after her mentally challenged sister Louann. While the two of them are staying with their Aunt Clare in their great-grandparents' large, old home, Louann becomes fascinated with a model of the home. The model even includes dolls that resemble the girls' great-grandparents. Amy finds the dollhouse creepy, especially because the dolls seem to be moving on their own and possibly even re-enacting the night their real-life counterparts were murdered. Will Amy summon the courage to watch the dolls and solve the mystery?

This story has everything – a dollhouse any girl would envy, cookies, stormy nights, a moody aunt. Best of all, Amy's and Louann's relationship is honest and real. Amy resents her sister and resents the attention she receives, but she loves her, too. This was probably the first book I ever read that featured a mentally challenged character. The first time I read this, I was just as resentful and angry as Amy. Later, after I got to know someone like Louann, I felt more sympathy for her when I re-read the book.

Despite the premise of dolls acting out a murder, the book has a reality to that grounds it. The chills and thrills keep you turning the pages, but it's the relationships and characters make The Dollhouse Murders memorable.

23 October 2017

12 Books About Racism #resist

Music for the End of Time
written by Jen Bryant, images by Beth Peck

Navajo Long Walk: The Tragic Story of a Proud People's Forced March From Their Homeland
written by Joseph Bruchac (Abenaki)

Peaceful Protest: The Life of Nelson Mandela
written by Yona Zeldis McDonough, images by Malcah Zeldis

Pink and Say
written and illustrated by Patricia Polacco

A Place Where Sunflowers Grow
written by Amy Lee-Tai, images by Felicia Hoshino

The Plot: The Secret Story of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion
written and illustrated by Will Eisner

Prisoner B-3087
written by Alan Gratz

Remembering Manzanar: Life In a Japanese Relocation Camp
written by Michael L. Cooper

Ron's Big Mission
written by Rose Blue and Corinne J. Naden, images by Don Tate

Ruth and the Green Book
written by Calvin Alexander with Gwen Strauss, images by Floyd Cooper

Black Like Kyra, White Like Me
written and illustrated by Judith Vigna

The Enemy Has a Face
written by Gloria D. Miklowitz

09 October 2017

9 Books About Native Americans Today

Some cities have begun to call today Indigenous Peoples' Day. I think this should be nationwide.

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian
written by Sherman Alexie, illustrated by Ellen Forney

Arctic Thaw: The People of the Whale in a Changing Climage
written by Peter Lourie

The Dark Pond
written by Joseph Bruchac, illustrated by Sally Wern Comport

Dreaming In Indian: Contemporary Native American Voices
edited by Lisa Charleyboy and Mary Beth Leatherdale

The Good Luck Cat
written by Joy Harjo, illustrated by Paul Lee

Grandpa's Girls
written by Nicola I. Campbell, illustrated by Kim LaFave

Hungry Johnny
written by Cheryl Minnema, illustrated by Wesley Ballinger

Indian Shoes
written by Cynthia Leitich Smith, illustrated by Jim Madsen

Less Than Half, More Than Whole
written by Kathleen and Michael Lacapa, illustrated by Michael Lacapa

08 October 2017

8 Books About Grandfathers

My grandfather would have been 101 years old today. Happy birthday, Papaw!

Bartleby Speaks
written by Robin Cruise, images by Kevin Hawkes

Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians
written by Brandon Sanderson

Anna's Corn
written by Barbara Santucci, images by Lloyd Bloom

Beautiful Bananas
written by Elizabeth Laird, images by Liz Pichon

Behind the Mask
written and illustrated by Yangsook Choi

written and illustrated by Simon James

The Blue Roses
written by Linda Boyden, images by Amy Córdova

Bumpety Bump
written and illustrated by Pat Hutchins