Cindy A.

The Boy Who Dared

Thursday, June 5, 2014
Susan Campbell Bartoletti
The Boy Who Dared
The Boy Who Dared is based on the true story of a German boy, Helmuth Hubener, that was forced to join the Hitler Youth.  He speaks truth to power in a time of deadly consequences.  This should be a must read.  This book tells the little known history of what life was like for the German people leading up to war.  Systematically rights were taken away and loyalty to country was questioned.  Young Helmuth listens to a banned radio station and prints flyers to distribute, telling his community the truth the Nazis are hiding.  This is powerful stuff.  Check our catalog.
 
Cindy A., Circ.
 

One for the Murphys

Wednesday, May 7, 2014
Lynda Mullaly Hunt
One for the Murphys
Carley is placed with a foster family after she is assaulted and betrayed by her mother.  She is brought into the loving home of the Murphys.  Carley struggles with her emotions as she experiences what healthy relationships feel like.  She learns to open up and trust.  She becomes one of the Murphys as she connects with the three boys of the family.  When she returns to live with her mother we have high hopes for Carley's future.  This story shares what a loving, caring foster family can mean to a child in distress.  Hunt's debut novel is so beautifully written I cried throughout much of it. Check our catalog.
 

Tops and Bottoms

Wednesday, April 30, 2014
Janet Stevens
Tops and Bottoms

 What a great read aloud!  I just shared it with 30 4th graders who were enthralled.  Stevens brings this tale magically to life with her beautiful illustrations.  Lazy Bear has the land, Hare has no land but he does have a plan.  Hare proposes to Bear that he will do all the work and they will share the profits.  We start to be concerned when we are told that Hare lost a risky bet with a tortoise and sold his land to pay off the debt.  We become more concerned when  Hare asks  "So, what will it be, Bear?  The top half or the bottom half?  It's up to you-tops or bottoms."  We cringe, we laugh.  Hare will take you for a ride.  A Caldecott Honor Book for distinguished picture book.  Check our catalog.

Cindy A., Circ.

Looking for Alaska

Monday, April 7, 2014
John Green
Looking for Alaska

Miles craves the "Great Perhaps".  So begins his studies at Culver Creek Boarding School.  He wants to experience life, not watch it go by.  He is befriended by his roommate, the Colonel, who teaches him how to pull pranks, smoke, and live beyond his previous experience growing up in Florida.  Alaska, lives up to her name "that which the sea breaks against", lives down the hall and brings life to a higher level.  Such a great read about all those heavy topics we deal with when searching for our young  selves.  The thrill of love and sex, the fear of bullies, the intensity of teenage friendship, the anguish of young life lost. Winner of the 2006  Michael L Printz award for best book in young adult literature.  It has my vote.  Check our catolog.

Cindy A., Circ

Just What Kind of Mother Are You?

Wednesday, March 19, 2014
Paula Daly

Scary.  Every mother's worst nightmare, compounded.  Lisa was supposed to have her friend's 13 year old daughter over for a sleepover.  In the craziness of life the sleepover didn't happen.  The next day the girl has been abducted.  This story will terrify you.  You will be double checking the location of your children,  of all ages, even when you think you know where they are.  This is a great read about friendship, fidelity, motherhood.  Check our Catalog

Cindy A., Circ

 

The Butterfly Mosque

Tuesday, May 7, 2013
G. Willow Wilson
The Butterfly Mosque

This is a lovely story of turmoil in a young woman's faith journey.  She is an American raised as an atheist.  She becomes Muslim while in college.  Her faith journey takes her to Cairo so she can live in a culture that supports her new religion.  This memoir will ring true regardless of your faith.  It is also a touchstone for those of us who have been expatriates for any length of time Check our catalog

Cindy A., Circ.

 

In Darkness

Tuesday, April 16, 2013
In Darkness

This is a beautiful film.  It is based on the true story of a small group of Jews that survived the liquidiation of the ghetto by the Germans in Poland.  Leopold Socha is a the sewer inspector with a dubious moral character that begins a business relationship with the Jews.  He will protect them and provide food for a daily fee.  As the story progresses there are daily decisions to be made about whether or not he will abandon them, turn them in for a reward, or continue to care for them.  The Jews spend 14 months living in the labyrinth of the sewers.  Unique to this film, love and sex are portrayed in a way that shows the Jews not just surviving, but living.  The film was nominated in 2011 for Best Foreign Language Film.  Hearing the characters speak in the languages of the time brought an even richer depth to the film.  For example, Socha spoke in a Polish dialect of the lower class of the time.  Check our catalog

Cindy A., Circ.

The Darkest Minds

Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Alexandra Bracken
The Darkest Minds

 

If you are a Hunger Games fan and looking for more, this is it.  The tweens are contracting a terrible virus that kills many of the children, those that survive have dangerous symptoms that frighten the adults.  So much so, they are killed or sent to a horrific rehabilitation camp.  In Ruby's case the disease manifests as being able to erase memories of those around her.  She escapes after years of confinement, joins up with others and they fight for their freedom.  Check our catalog

Cindy A., Circ.

 

Wonder

Tuesday, March 26, 2013
R.J. Palacio
Wonder

 

There are books that every kid should read.  This is one of them.  August was born with a facial deformity.  Due to many surgeries he was home schooled until 5th grade.  The journey he, his family, and classmates take in discovering kindness and courage is emotional.  This book resonates for those that feel a little different or are entering a new environment-middle school!  It provides a true lesson in empathy.   Also, in standing up for oneself and others against the bully afraid of the different.  Check our catalog

Cindy A., Circ.

The One and Only Ivan

Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Katherine Applegate

 

 

My 9 year old said this was a "must read".  It is a gem.  Read it slowly, savor it.  Ivan, a mighty silverback gorilla, tells his story from the Big Top Mall and Video Arcade.  He paints his way to where humans make amends, a good zoo, where he gets to enjoy a taste of what was his stolen youth.  Ivan's story has much to tell us about our humanity.  Ivan's voice speaks volumes for caged animals.  Ivan would say I am speaking too much, chattering like a chimp , and crowding the world with noise.  Read the book, hear Ivan's low timber resonate in your heart. Check Our Catalog!

Cindy A., Circ.

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