The Classroom Bookshelf
November 1, 2019 by Betsy Bird
It’s kind of gratifying to know that the story has been finding its audience. And what child wouldn’t find the notion of living on a school bus, tricked out like a long, yellow mobile home, enticing?
October 5, 2019 by Betsy Bird
You know why you haven’t heard more people talking about this book? Because nobody knows how to sell it. Well, sorry folks, but the secret is out now. It’s one of the best books I’ve ever read for kids, and maybe the best school rated children’s novel I’ve encountered period. This, right here, is the book of our times.
September 12, 2019 by Betsy Bird
Set in contemporary Seattle with a Suquamish/Duwamish protagonist, Day (Upper Skagit) highlights a historical injustice by writing a book a kid might actually enjoy reading. No mean task. I think I may have devoured it entirely in one sitting.
August 15, 2019 by Betsy Bird
Good news. I know exactly what to do with this particular middle school book. You need to weigh it down with awards, so many that it can no longer stand under its own weight and is forced to stagger to the display unit that stands front and center in the library where all the best books go. Then, and only then, will it have found its true home.
July 5, 2019 by Betsy Bird
Lisa Moore Ramée has taken the complexity of the real world, with all its police shootings and racism and destructive tendencies and made it personal for young readers. I don’t care what kid you hand this book to. Every single one of them will understand what’s going on here and, maybe, what’s going on in the wider world. The new required reading.
April 10, 2019 by Betsy Bird
There are books for kids that dare to be more thoughtful than pulse pounding. If chosen freely by a child, they can unlock something inside. Something that means more to the person reading than anyone else. The Line Tender carries this promise in its pages. It's the right book for the right reader.
March 21, 2019 by Betsy Bird
Here’s an idea: Why not take the idea of a world gone mad and give it a jolt of lightning to the veins? Set your book in another era when America went a little crazy, then liven things up with spies, car chases, murder attempts, gunshots, traitors, double agents, and that’s just the first few chapters! A book for the kids that want to read a response to our age that will thrill them to the core, and maybe plant a couple of seeds of rebellion in their craniums at the same time.
February 27, 2019 by Betsy Bird
Gracefully switching between text and comics, comics and text, author Remy Lai feeds breadcrumbs (or, more accurately, cake crumbs) of humor and sequential art to kids, luring them towards a storyline with a deeper, darker meaning. For the kid that avoids serious stories like the plague, Pie in the Sky is the perfect gateway drug.
February 7, 2019 by Betsy Bird
There’s the usual historical, factual stuff . . . and then there’s the pure science fiction. Books like We’re Not From Here by Geoff Rodkey. Unapologetically bold, it wears its little science fiction loving heart on its sleeve. Managing to also be funny and strangely poignant, this isn’t a book about “Why can’t we all just get along?” It’s about what happens when our differences are so glaring we have no choice but to acknowledge that they’re there at all.
January 16, 2019 by Betsy Bird
To the year 2019, I hand this middle grade novel. In Eventown by Corey Ann Haydu, you’ll find a marvelous defense of messiness, mistakes, and uncomfortable conversations. We all want to run away from our problems, but it’s like that old phrase says: Be careful what you wish for.
The Classroom Bookshelf
by Denise Davila
Teen Librarian Toolbox
by Amanda MacGregor
100 Scope Notes
by Travis Jonker
by Steven Engelfried
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