Category Archives: Reads

December 17, 2014

The Badger Knight

Posted by at 1:26 am in Reads | Permalink

The badger knightThe Badger Knight (for ages 8 and up) by Kathryn Erskine

The year is 1346. Adrian is almost 13 years old but he isn’t like most other boys his age. He has Albinism, which means he has very pale skin and light hair and eyes. He has almost always been a small, sickly kid. The bullies in his English village call him “badger” because of the dirt he rubs under his eyes to stop the glare from his paper-white skin.

Adrian has a sharp mind, and all he wants to do is go to war as an archer. This is not his father’s plan. Adrian can write, and Adrian’s father wants him to become a scribe. To Adrian, this sounds like the worst job in the world.The badger knight

The Scottish invade near their home in England, and Adrian’s best friend Hugh joins his father on the battlefield. Adrian follows Hugh, determined to find his friend and participate in his glorious vision of warfare. As Adrian ventures through war-ridden England and Scotland, his voyage becomes a true knight’s tale.

But will Adrian even be able to find Hugh? The perils of war don’t exactly resemble what Adrian had pictured in his head. Will he make it home safely? Read the book to find out how this young knight’s adventure ends. Have you already read The Badger Knight? Leave your Comments in the section below!

Marisa, STACKS Intern

December 16, 2014

Literary Cats

Posted by at 1:13 am in Reads, Writing Prompt | Permalink

Rainbow PenFamous Books Written by Literary Cats

Most people know that cats are smart, but did you know that many famous books were actually written by cats? I had no idea until I discovered these books in my cat’s library (a.k.a. his pile of treasured possessions hidden under the couch).Diary of a Wimpy Cat

Can you identify these literary masterpieces written by cats?

  • Diary of a Wimpy Cat by Jeff Kitty
  • Purrrcy Catson and the Olympians by Rick Rowr-dan
  • Little Kittens by Louisa May Alcat
  • Furry Pawter and the Dog’s Bone by J.K. Meowling
  • Say Meow and Chase that Tiny, Moving Red Dot! by R. L. Feline

Leave your answers in the Comments and let us know what books you would find in your cat library!

Sonja, STACKS Staffer

December 11, 2014

What Kids Want in Books

Posted by at 1:57 am in Reads, Writing Prompt | Permalink

Recommend me!What Do You Want in Books?

I mentioned in a post yesterday that Scholastic just completed a national survey of children aged 6–17 to study their “attitudes and behaviors around reading books for fun.” According to 70% of kids aged 6–17, books that “make me laugh” rank highest on the list across all ages. Here are some more stats for What Kids Want in Books:

  • Children aged 6–8 are more likely than older children to want books with characters that “look like me.”
  • Children aged 9–11 are more likely than younger children to want books that “have a mystery or a problem to solve.”
  • Children aged 12–14 are more likely than older children to want books with “characters I wish I could be like because they are smart, strong or brave.”
  • Children aged 15–17 are more likely than younger children to want books that help them “forget about real life for a while.”

In addition, 73% of children aged 6–17 agree with the statement, “I would read more if I could find more books that I like.”

Do these statistics represent YOU? Leave a Comment to tell us your favorite book with a character who looks like you, or with a mystery, or with smart, strong characters. Tell us what you really want in books!

December 10, 2014

Favorite Funny Books

Posted by at 1:21 am in Reads | Permalink

Funny Books FiestaScholastic wants to know . . . What are your favorite funny books?

Scholastic just completed a national survey of children aged 6–17 to study their “attitudes and behaviors around reading books for fun.” According to 70% of kids aged 6–17, books that “make me laugh” rank highest on the list across all ages.

Here at the STACKS, we already know you love funny books, but we want to know which funny book is your favorite and why?

Please tell us in the Comments! And if you are among the 30% of kids who did not pick funny books as your favorite, tell us what is YOUR favorite kind of book to read for fun?

 

December 3, 2014

The Madman of Piney Woods

Posted by at 1:37 am in Reads | Permalink

The Madman of Piney Woods (for ages 8 and up) by Christopher Paul Curtis

The Madman of Piney Woods book coverAt first glance, Benji and Red couldn’t seem more different. It’s 1901, and Benji is a descendent of African-American slaves who escaped to freedom in Canada by way of the Underground Railroad. He is 12 years old, works for the local newspaper, and hopes to be a journalist. Red, on the other hand, is a fiery-haired Irish boy who is interested in science.

Benji and Red have both heard stories of a madman who lives in the woods, but those were just that – stories. But they have actually noticed a strange presence in the woods. It seems like someone is always watching them, tracking their every move. When they realize they’ve both experienced the same funny feeling, the boys decide to take a closer look at what’s going on under the cover of the woods.

There’s no way the Madman of Piney Woods could be real . . . is there?

You’ll have to read to find out whether the madman is fact or fiction!

Did you read Elijah of Buxton? Several of the characters make cameo appearances in The Madman of Piney Woods. Let us know what you think in the Comments section below!

Marisa, STACKS Intern

November 26, 2014

November Books of the Month

Posted by at 10:04 am in Books of the Month, Reads | Permalink

Recommend me!I asked you all what books you were reading, and you responded with some really awesome book recommendations! I made a word cloud so you call can see which titles are most popular. Percy Jackson is still leading the pack! Check it out:Books of the Month

Now that it’s wintertime, we’re looking at a lot of time spent indoors out of the cold . . . and that means more time for reading! See a title here that you haven’t read yet? Now’s a great time to check it out!

Let’s keep this going. What books are you reading right now? What are your favorite books of all time? What’s the one book you think everyone should read at least once in their lifetime? Leave the title (or titles) in the Comments below. Can’t wait to see what new books you recommend!

En-Szu, STACKS Writer

November 25, 2014

Gallagher Girls Readalikes

Posted by at 1:09 am in Reads | Permalink

Gallagher Girls book coverFor Gallagher Girls Fans!

If you like the Gallagher Girls series (for ages 12 and up) by Ally Carter about the Gallagher Academy for Exception Young Women, here are some more books for ages 11-13 about “exceptional” young detectives and spies.

The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart
Four children are selected for a secret undercover mission while attending the Learning Institute for the Very Enlightened. See also the other books in the Mysterious Benedict Society series.

Gilda Joyce, Psychic Investigator by Jennifer Allison
Since her father’s death, Gilda Joyce is determined to hone her psychic skills to communicate with the other side, and become an investigator of mysteries of chilling proportions. See also the other books in the Gilda Joyce series.

Down the Rabbit Hole by Peter Abrahams
13-year-old Ingrid adores Sherlock Holmes and channels his skills while trying to solve a murder in her hometown. See also the other books in the Echo Falls Mystery series.

The Ring of Five by Eoin McNamee
After a cab driver drops Danny off at the wrong boarding school, he learns that he is destined to be the only spy that can prevent an evil world from conquering the good world. See also the other books in the Ring of Five series.

I, Q Book #1: Independence Hall by Roland Smith
Sometimes it’s difficult to tell the good guys from the bad guys, as Quest and his stepsister Angela find out. See also the other books in the I, Q series.

Nancy Drew Mystery Stories Book #1: The Secret of the Old Clock by Carolyn Keene
Meet the original spy girl, teenager Nancy Drew!

The Red Blazer Girls Book #1: The Ring of Rocamadour by Michael D. Bell
Follow seventh graders Sophie, Margaret, and Rebecca as they help a ghostly neighbor solve a puzzle left more than 20 years ago. See also the other books in the Red Blazer Girls series.

Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief by Wendelin Van Draanen
Sammy never minds her own business, which is why she’s the best tween detective in California! See also the other books in the Sammy Keyes series.

Spies by Clive Gifford
Do you want to learn about real spies, techniques and secret weapons? If so, this is the perfect book for you!

Jen, STACKS Booktalker

November 19, 2014

Starring Jules Trailer

Posted by at 10:32 am in Reads | Permalink

Starring Jules book #4New Book Trailer for the Starring Jules Series (for ages 7-10)

You should watch this AWESOME trailer if ANY of these apply to you:

  • You love the Starring Jules series by Beth Ain.
  • You like catchy songs.
  • You don’t know why you aren’t famous yet.
  • You enjoy blowing milk bubbles.
  • You’re a regular kid.
  • Your teacher is strict.
  • You have a little brother.
  • You wear pigtails in your hair.
  • You like reading books that make you laugh!

If you nodded your head yes to any of those, then this series is for you. Still not convinced? Check out the trailer and rock out with shining star Jules Bloom!

November 19, 2014

The Worry Tree Review

Posted by at 1:17 am in Reads | Permalink

The Worry TreeThe Worry Tree (for ages 7-10) by Marianne Musgrove

Juliet worries way too much. She has problems at school, home and within herself. She can never get them out of her mind, no matter how hard she tries. She can’t stop worrying! Does that ring a bell? Do you have worries you can’t stop thinking about? Whether or not you do, you will enjoy The Worry Tree by Marianne Musgrove.

Juliet finds an old tree painted on the wall after she peels up the wallpaper in her new room. Her Nana explains the legend of the Worry Tree to her, and Juliet is intrigued. Could this solve her problems and finally get her worries out of her mind?

It is really easy to relate to Juliet’s problems because this book has a realistic amount of drama and doesn’t send characters into fake drama hysterics. I enjoyed this book because it isn’t magical in the way Harry Potter is, but it does have a mystical element! This is a very easy read; I read it in third grade in a day. Nonetheless, older kids will enjoy this too! If you are looking for a fun and easy read, The Worry Tree is perfect!

Beata, Scholastic Kids Council

November 15, 2014

The Marvels: New Brian Selznick Book

Posted by at 1:25 pm in Reads | Permalink

Extra!The Marvels by Brian Selznick

If you loved The Invention of Hugo Cabret and Wonderstruck, then prepare yourself for another amazing book by Brian Selznick coming out on September 15, 2015! With 440 pages of original drawings and 200 pages of text, The Marvels promises to be epic, and it will have a beautiful cover! Look! Just look at it!!The Marvels book cover

In The Marvels, Selznick weaves together two spellbinding stories—one in words, and the other in pictures. The illustrated story begins in 1766 with Billy Marvel, the lone survivor of a shipwreck, and charts the adventures of his family of actors over five generations. The written story opens in 1990 and follows Joseph, who has run away from school to an uncle’s puzzling house in London, where he, along with the reader, must piece together many mysteries. How the picture and word stories intersect will leave readers marveling over Selznick’s storytelling skill. Get it? Marveling! The Marvels is filled with mystery, vibrant characters, surprise twists, and heartrending beauty, and features Selznick’s most arresting art to date.

Here’s what the author has to say about The Marvels: “I’m thrilled to finally share The Marvels with readers after three years of intense work on the book, including living briefly in London and spending an entire year drawing the pictures,” says Brian Selznick.

And here’s what I have to say about The Marvels: “I CAN’T WAIT UNTIL SEPTEMBER 15!!!!! And also, what are those cool serpent thingies on the cover? Oh, I can’t wait!”

Leave a Comment to tell us what you think about this news.

Sonja, STACKS Staffer