The Lightning Thief

Thursday, August 5, 2010
Rick Riordan

My boys saw the  cover of The Lightening Thief, by Rick Riordan and said, "-that didn't happen in the movie".  The book and the movie have similarities, but the movie was not true to the book.  Percy Jackson is twelve years old in the book and the story is truly told for that age group-the middle schooler.  It has wonderful themes of friendship and being our own hero-solving our problems with strength , humor, and intelligence.

The adventure is set in modern times, but harks back to the Olympian gods.  It does not delve deeply into the mythology, but enough to tell a fun adventure story and pique the interest to go read another book on the great Greek heroes and gods.  It is a fun read and my boys are waiting impatiently for book two in the series, The Sea of Monsters.

Cindy A., Circulation

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Thank You, Mr. Falker

Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Patricia Polacco

If you haven't been introduced to Patricia Polacco this is an excellent beginning.  Her picture books are a bit longer so they are found in the juvenile section.  They are wonderful for the older child who wants a bit more depth but still enjoys wonderful illustrations.  As a mom, it is bittersweet to have children reading chapter books on their own.  Patricia Polacco's books are a great transition for me, as well as my boys. 
In Thank you, Mr. Falker, Tricia, who grew up loving books  is excited to begin school and learn to read for herself.  As the story continues school becomes harder and harder, reading becomes a form of torture.   Not only that, but because of her inability to read her self esteem suffers and she is teased by classmates.   Not until she is in 5th grade does Tricia encounter a teacher who recognizes Tricia has been cleverly faking her reading ability.  Over the course of a few months Tricia's reading ability blossomed  and she was able to read a precious book her grandfather had given her years before.
This is a beautiful story with wonderful illustrations for any family story time.

Cindy A., Circulation

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Counting Kisses

Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Karen Katz

This is a must read at bed time, every night, with my little girl.  No matter how many books we read, Counting Kisses, must be read last!  What a fun and simple book to read with your little one as you kiss your little one from head to toe calming them down for a good night of rest….hopefully!

Emily D., Circulation

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Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Victoria Kann

As stated by the Library Journal, Pinkalicious eats so many pink cupcakes that she wakes up the next morning with pink skin and hair. The color just won't wash off, and the doctor diagnoses her with Pinkititis and tells her to eat green food to get better. Still, when her parents aren't looking, she sneaks just one more treat–and turns red. Startled, she starts to choke down her veggies and finally returns to normal. When everything seems okay, Daddy asks what happened to the other cupcakes, and Pinkalicious's little brother bounds into the room with one in hand, happily showing off his new pink skin!

This book is hilarious and was such a joy to share with my now three year old girl.  She quickly picked up the story and was able to read it to me and her stuffed animal friends.  I will have a wonderful memory to last a lifetime whenever I hear this title.  Listening through the door to my little girl reading to her toys after I have tucked her in for the night. “Now pay attention!” she says “You have Pinkititis, What you need is a steady diet of green food!”

Emily D., Circulation

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Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days

Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Jeff Kinney

Looking for a book that has a summer vacation theme, is educational and hilarious?  Dog Days, Diary of A Wimpy Kid, Book 4 is the book for you and your elementary/middle school aged child!

Gregg Heffley is a middle school aged boy who wants to stay inside all summer, play video games and watch TV.  Gregg writes about his quest to spend his summer vacation the way he wants to spend it, inside!

The stories that Gregg documents about his summer vacation are very funny.  His adventures include trying to starting his own lawn care business with his best friend Rowley.  The boys owe Rowley's Dad $83 for smoothies that they charged to his account at the country club.  Starting a business is a great way to earn money to pay the tab.  However, business is a bust because Rowley’s Dad will not finance their advertising campaign. Gregg does manage to mow one lawn but because he refuses to mow over dog poop, his Dad has to come back and finish the job.

When I first started reading this book, I was worried because Gregg was against spending his summer the way that I wanted my son to spend his, outside!  My son did not need any bad influences.  However, I had to laugh at the stories because I can remember feeling the way Gregg felt when I was his age.

Dog Days will provide many laughs for kids and adults.  I read this book with my son who is going into 3rd grade this fall.  We had several laugh aloud moments as we read about the summer antics of Gregg and his family.  There are several life lessons that are brought out in the story that make this book educational as well.  A book that is educational, entertaining and that young boy’s will read.  What more could you ask for out of a book?

Barb C., Technical Services

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Healing Waters

Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Joyce Moyer Hostetter

Thirteen year old Pia is sent to Molokai when he contracts leprosy.  The book is told from the boy's experience which is not good.  Life was desperately hard and the 'aloha' spirit did not exist on that island.  The book also discusses the arrival of Father Damien who was instrumental in helping the sick and discouraged people.  This is a very interesting book for anyone over the age of nine.  Adults would find this an eye opener.

Sue N., Youth Services

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Last Shot: A Final Four Mystery

Wednesday, July 14, 2010
John Feinstein

We listened to this on a looong drive across Utah.  My husband, who generally doesn’t care for audiobooks actually told our 4-year-old daughter, (normally Daddy’s darling), to be quiet because he was listening to the story!  And now she knows who Coach K, while our son says “ABD – anybody BUT Duke.”

Grade 6-10 - This action-packed mystery is set at the NCAA Final Four men's basketball tournament. Eighth-graders Steven Thomas and Susan Carol Anderson are aspiring journalists and winners of the U.S. Basketball Writer's Association 14-and-under writing contest. Their prize is a trip, with press credentials and reporting responsibilities, to the Final Four in New Orleans. While exploring the Superdome, they overhear a blackmail threat leveled at Minnesota State University's star player. Threatened with a falsified transcript that would disqualify him and his team, Chip Graber is pressured to deliberately lose the final game against Duke. Stevie and Susan Carol become resourceful sleuths determined to save Chip and to expose the scandal. Throughout the story, famous basketball personalities make memorable guest appearances, including spirited sports analyst Tony Kornheiser and irrepressible commentator Dick Vitale. References to real players and coaches mingle, almost eerily, with the fictitious characters. Feinstein shares his extensive sports expertise, smoothly weaving into the tale a wealth of background information about NCAA regulations, tournament traditions, recruitment and eligibility issues, and gambling. Although the action on the court is vividly described, this story also breaks new ground for teens, focusing primarily on the influential role of media in promoting college basketball. Readers will enjoy the rivalry and chemistry between outspoken but insecure Stevie and savvy-beyond-her-years Susan Carol, and their spunky determination to get the scoop. Mystery fans will find enough suspense in this fast-paced narrative to keep them hooked.

Diane M., Administration

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Mockingbird (mok'ing-burd)

Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Kathryn Erskine

This book shows us inside the mind of a 10 year old girl who as Asperger's syndrome.  Her brother has been killed in a school shooting and she and her single parent father try to deal with everyday life and teachers and schoolmates.  The father is portrayed as a strong person who is trying to deal with the cancer death of his wife and all of Caitlyn's problems.  Caitlyn is strong and brave and tries hard to work with her counselors.

I didn't know much about this syndrome and I have a friend whose son has Asperbergers so it was eye opener for me.

I highly recommend this book to adults as well as readers grade 4 and up.

Sue N., Youth Services

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The Maze of Bones (book #1 of “The 39 Clues”)

Monday, September 21, 2009
Rick Riordan
The Cahills are the most powerful family the world has ever known. Grace Cahill, the matriarch of the family, left a challenge in her will for her surviving relatives. They can either take one million dollars or the first in a series of Clues that will reveal the source of the family’s power. It’s Cahill vs. Cahill in a race to beat the competition and be the first to assemble all 39 Clues. Read The 39 Clues books to follow fourteen-year-old Amy Cahill and her eleven-year-old brother Dan as they travel the world to hunt for the Clues.” - Scholastic (
I read the first book, The Maze of Bones and just loved it. I can’t wait to read the rest of the series. It’s an action-packed scavenger hunt and full of lots of obstacles – bombs, poison, and lots of mind-bending puzzles.
Check out the website, and find out which Cahill branch you belong to:
And watch fan Whoopi Goldberg interview Gordon Korman, author of book #2 about “The 39 Clues” at:
Janice, Youth Services

Airborn (Book on CD)

Thursday, February 12, 2009
Kenneth Oppel

A creatively original Victorian era fantasy where airships are one of the major modes of transportation.The style has been compared to that of Jules Verne with adventures, storms, pirates, strange creatures and a bit of romance.The descriptions of the airships makes it possible to believe that they really existed.The last 1/3 of the book is a “page-turner’ with non-stop action.A very captivating fantasy written for upper elementary age readers, but also a “great read” for adults, too.

Kathleen Zaenger, Library Director

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