Parallel Journeys

A German Jew. A fanatic member of the Hitler Youth. Both were victims of the Nazi party - one more obvious than the other. Parallel Journeys by Eleanor Ayer, with Helen Waterford and Alfons Heck, tell the stories of these two young people, born just miles apart. Helen Waterford managed to escape Nazi Germany for... Continue Reading →

Mary, Bloody Mary

Fascination with the Tudors of English royalty seems to be the rage these days, but most books and TV shows are not appropriate for younger readers. Thankfully, author Carolyn Meyer also has an interest in the Tudors and has written books for young adult readers. Mary, Bloody Mary is about Queen Mary Tudor of England... Continue Reading →

The Gammage Cup

The Minnipins live in a remote valley, cut off from the rest of their world. They remember how their ancestors got to the valley, but nothing that comes before that event. Why did they leave their former home? What were they fleeing? These questions feel irrelevant to the current inhabitants of the valley. Instead they... Continue Reading →

Wolf Hollow

Annabelle enjoys her life in rural Pennsylvania, even if it's a little boring. Just as she is wishing for something exciting to happen, Betty Glengarry walks into her classroom. And Annabelle's life changes. Betty is a problem child, who was kicked out of her city school and sent to live with her grandparents. She threatens... Continue Reading →

Lizzy Bennet’s Diary

Marcia Williams has created a fun companion to Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice in Lizzy Bennet's Diary. Williams follows the storyline of Pride and Prejudice closely, including illustrations and small details of life not included in the book - like the fancy buttonholes Elizabeth is embroidering on a new waistcoat for her father. She also includes the "letters"... Continue Reading →

Shadow of a Bull

Manolo has grown up in his father's shadow.  His father, the great bullfighter Juan Olivar, was killed during a fight when Manolo was just a small child.  But Juan is never far from Manolo's thoughts - the old men in his village won't let him forget.  He must always remember his father was the greatest... Continue Reading →

Behind Rebel Lines

Recently, my children and I learned quite a bit about the work women did to help the war effort during the Civil War.  Quite a few women dressed up as men, and joined the army.  Other women were couriers or spies. Behind Rebel Lines: The Incredible Story of Emma Edmonds, Civil War Spy by Seymour... Continue Reading →

Night of the Twisters

Dan and his friends live the ideal small-town life in Grand Island, Nebraska.  They swim, ride bikes, hang out together. When a severe thunderstorm alert is issued for that evening, Dan doesn't think much of it.  It's a common occurrence in Nebraska. But what happens next is not. Night of the Twisters by Ivy Ruckman... Continue Reading →

The Case of the Deadly Desperados

P.K. Pinkerton is in deep trouble... in more ways than one.  He is at the bottom of a silver mine, trying to figure out a way to outwit Wittlin' Walt, the Very Bad Man after his inheritance. This is where we find P.K. at the beginning of The Case of the Deadly Desperados, by Caroline... Continue Reading →

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