One Time

Gina Filomena has a new neighbor whose wide, welcoming smile catches her off-guard. She like his smile. She likes his imagination, which makes her look at her neighborhood differently. When Antonio shows up at her class, and offers his generous smile to everyone, Gina feels a bit put out. But the tenor of the whole... Continue Reading →

Stone Fox

This short book by John Reynolds Gardiner must have been a reader for my children when we were homeschooling, because I don’t ever remember reading it before this morning. Little Willy is concerned for his grandfather, who suddenly took to his bed and quit talking and laughing with Willy. Doc Smith says nothing is wrong... Continue Reading →

The Lion Who Stole My Arm

Pedru lives in the African bush.  He and his friends fish for their families every day, and his village grow crops for food. He and his friends and neighbors also live in fear... of lions. One day, Pedru makes an impulsive, and foolish, decision, which costs him his arm.  He wants to take revenge on... Continue Reading →

The Truth of Me

Patricia MacLachlan has done it again. "Done what?" I hear you asking. She's written a beautiful book about difficult relationships and finding your way through them. In The Truth of Me, Robbie's parents send him to his grandmother's house for the summer. They are touring with their woodwind quartet for the summer. Robbie is fine... Continue Reading →

Clara and the Bookwagon

It's hard to imagine a time when books were expensive and not readily available, especially for children. Clara and the Bookwagon by Nancy Smiler Levinson tells the story of Clara, who badly wants to learn to read, but does not have anyone to teach her.  Clara lives on a small farm, where there are no... Continue Reading →

The Mouse with the Question Mark Tail

Mouse Minor is what everyone calls him, but it's not his real name. The hero of The Mouse with a Question Mark Tail doesn't have a name. And it bothers him immensly. He never knew his parents either. He lives with Aunt Marigold under the Royal Mews, the carriage house of Buckingham Palace. Mouse Minor... Continue Reading →

Cowgirl Kate and Cocoa

Beginning readers will enjoy the sweet relationship between Cowgirl Kate and her beloved horse, Cocoa, in Cowgirl Kate and Cocoa by Erica Silverman. Each short chapter tells about an interaction between the two of them, some more mundane than others. But all made exceptionally delightful by colorful watercolors by Betty Lewin (Click, Clack, Moo: Cows... Continue Reading →

Beverly Cleary

As a child, I read Beverly Cleary's books over and over and over again.  I couldn't get enough of Ramona, Beezus, Henry Huggins and Ralph S. Mouse. Cleary's books reflect childhood wonderfully - a simple childhood, with simple problems, like what are the real words to the national anthem?  How will I get this dog... Continue Reading →

The 18 Penny Goose

Letty Wright is beside herself.  The British are coming, and she doesn't have time to catch her flock of geese. Instead, she tries to chase Solomon, her gander, and his wives out of the barnyard. But he won't listen, and her family is about to leave without her.  Letty gives up the chase, and instead... Continue Reading →

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