Category Archives: Reads

August 20, 2014

Choose Your Own Adventure, Part 3

Posted by at 3:20 pm in Personality Quiz, Reads | Permalink

Adventure Books BashWelcome back to Choose Your Own Adventure! In a choose-your-own-adventure story, you read a chapter and then you get a few choices of what the character should do next. For the STACKS Adventure Books Bash, we’re celebrating adventure with a choose-your-own-adventure story written by me! Have you read Part 1 and Part 2 yet? Pay attention to your answer choices because when the story is done, your answers will reveal the adventure hero you are most like. Are you ready???

Part 3

You know it’s going to be dark soon, and also time for dinner, but you are mesmerized by your new discovery. Curiosity gets the best of you, and you reach out and pull on the knob.

Nothing budges.

You try twisting and pushing, but nothing happens. The door is totally stuck. Frustrated, you plop down on the grass and watch the last rays of the sun as it slides behind the horizon.

After a while, you start to feel chilly and kind of hungry, so you decide to go home. As you stand up, though, the ground beneath you starts to tremble. As the trembling intensifies, you hear a loud rattling noise. You look over and see that the door is shaking and bright light is seeping out from the edges.

Scared, you start crawling backwards. The sky, which was completely clear only a moment ago, is full of dark clouds. With a loud CRACK, rain begins pouring from the sky. The wind picks up and intensifies until you feel like you’re being battered by rain on all sides.

You start running towards a large tree in the middle of the field, thinking you can hide in it, when suddenly a bolt of lightning slices through the air and strikes the tree, exploding it. Screaming, you start running back towards the woods and your house. The ground is getting muddy and you are slipping and sliding, so it’s taking you a long time to cover the last twenty yards. Before you can process what’s happening, another bolt of lightning strikes a small shrub only a few yards to your left.  You keep running and lightning strikes another patch of grass to your right. You’re about a foot away from the door, which is still shaking violently like someone—or something—is trying to escape.

You . . .

A) knock and see if anyone answers.

B) keep running for a place to hide!

C) try to remember everything you learned in wilderness safety class. You remember something about lying face down on the ground. That might not be the most accurate memory, but it’ll do—so you do it.

D) know that metal conducts electricity in a thunderstorm so you do NOT touch that metal doorknob.

E) pull on the knob! You need to get indoors and you need to get indoors NOW!

What would YOU do? Share your answer in the Comments below! Click here for your personality quiz results and links to new installments of the story.

See ya next time,

image from kids.scholastic.com — En-Szu, STACKS Staffer

August 20, 2014

Loot

Posted by at 2:33 pm in Reads | Permalink

Loot book cover by Jude WatsonLoot by Jude Watson (for ages 9-12)

LOSERS, WEEPERS. STEALERS, KEEPERS.

When Rick Riordan, author of the Percy Jackson series, says a book is “the perfect summer read,” you know it’s got to be good! He loves Loot, an action-packed heist book by The 39 Clues author Jude Watson.

Loot starts when March McQuin’s criminal father, Alfie, falls off a high rooftop in a heist gone wrong. As Alfie speaks his last words, he manages to tell March to “find jewels.” But March soon learns that “jewels” is actually “Jules” — a twin sister he’s never heard of!

After finding each other, March and Jules plan to follow their father’s footsteps and find a new life for themselves. With just one well-planned heist, the two could be living beyond their wildest dreams! The only question is how? It all becomes clear when March begins to discover hints his father left behind…

Watch the video preview.

Would you have the courage to pull off a heist like March and Jules? What friends would you take along the way?  Post your answers in the Comments below!

 

August 17, 2014

The Secret Kingdom Series

Posted by at 11:49 am in Reads | Permalink

The Secret KingdomThe Lowdown on the Secret Kingdom Series (for ages 7-10)

Have you read the Secret Kingdom series? If you haven’t heard about these magical books, here’s everything you need to know to get started:

The girls in charge: Ellie, Summer, and Jasmine! These three best friends find an enchanted box that whisks them away to a place called the Secret Kingdom, where they go on amazing adventures and have to save the day from . . .

the villain, better known as Queen Malice. She lives on a grey thundercloud, so you can imagine how mean she is! She is constantly trying to take over the Secret Kingdom and she makes everyone who lives there simply miserable, especially her brother . . .

the good guy. King Merry is just a happy royal with a knack for inventing magical things. He wants the best for all his loving citizens, but unfortunately, he’s often forgetful and gets confused easily.

Luckily, Ellie, Summer, and Jasmine don’t have to save the Secret Kingdom alone – they have Trixi the Pixie to cast spells and help them defeat Queen Malice!

To read an exclusive excerpt from their first adventure in the Secret Kingdom, click here.

If you love it as much as we think you will, you’ll be happy to know there are LOTS more books in the series! Look for Book 2: Unicorn Valley, and help Ellie, Summer, and Jasmine save the Secret Kingdom yet again!

 

August 16, 2014

Choose Your Own Adventure, Part 2

Posted by at 1:49 am in Personality Quiz, Reads | Permalink

Adventure Books BashWelcome back to Choose Your Own Adventure! In a choose-your-own-adventure story, you read a chapter and then you get a few choices of what the character should do next. For the STACKS Adventure Books Bash, we’re celebrating adventure with a choose-your-own-adventure story written by me! Have you read Part 1 yet? Pay attention to your answer choices because when the story is done, your answers will reveal the adventure hero you are most like. Are you ready???

Part 2

“Alfie!” you say. You don’t want to be left alone, and he’s acting weird. “Come back!” He looks back a few times and barks, but soon his fluffy, yellow tail is out of sight. You sigh and think, “So much for loyalty.”

You start walking deeper into the field. You’re still mad at Kyle and don’t want to go home just yet. You’re distractedly wondering why Alfie was behaving so strangely when you trip and nearly fall on your face.

At first you think you tripped over a large rock or piece of garbage. After all, the grass is pretty unruly and tall, and sometimes rowdy teenagers leave trash here. But when you look back, you see something glinting in the light of the setting sun — a shiny, metal doorknob covered in strange symbols.

Curious, you lean in closer and can see that it is attached to a wooden door in the ground. The door isn’t very big and it looks old, but the knob looks very new.

You . . .

a) call a friend and tell him/her to come take a look before deciding what to do next.

b) think it looks pretty cool and you want to look at it later, but for now it’s more important to find gross bugs to stick in your brother’s bed.

c) wonder out loud, “Is it safe?” Probably not. Who knows what’s down there! Go about your business and ignore it. It’s probably just a musty, old cellar anyway.

d) take a picture of the doorknob with your phone. Then go home to do some research on the meaning of the symbols.

e) don’t waste any time and open that door! There could be all kinds of cool stuff in there.

What would YOU do? Share your answer in the Comments below! Click here for your personality quiz results and links to new installments of the story.

See ya next time,

image from kids.scholastic.com — En-Szu, STACKS Staffer

August 14, 2014

The World According to Humphrey Book Review

Posted by at 1:03 am in Reads | Permalink

Humphrey the hamster100% Kid-Approved Book Recommendations

As you probably know, STACKers love to read, so today we are featuring a book recommended by one of YOU! DolphinRed228 recommends The World According to Humphrey by Betty G. Birney (for ages 7-10). Have you read this book? Have you read the other books in the Humphrey series? What did you think?

Read on for DolphinRed’s review. . .

The World According to Humphrey book coverHi. I am writing to tell you about the book The World According to Humphrey. The book is about a hamster that a teacher adopted. The hamster is very smart and he talks, but not to the characters that are in the story. When he talks, they just hear squeak-squeak-squeak, or something like that. The book is really cool because the hamster talks about his life. There is a lock on his cage, but what the other characters don’t know is that it really doesn’t lock. He meets a lot of friends on the way and some of them are pretty funny. I think you should read this book because it is really funny, and it’s just a really good book.

Do you agree with DolphinRed228? Leave a Comment or go to the Reading Buzz Message Board to join the discussion about this book.

August 13, 2014

Choose Your Own Adventure, Part I

Posted by at 1:59 am in Personality Quiz, Reads | Permalink

Adventure Books BashIn a choose-your-own-adventure story, you read a chapter and then you get a few choices of what the character should do next. For the STACKS Adventure Books Bash, let’s celebrate adventure with a choose-your-own-adventure story written by me! Pay attention to your answer choices because when the story is done, your answers will reveal the adventure hero you are most like. WHAAAAT?

Part 1

Your brother Kyle is driving you nuts. He tapes cling wrap to your toilet seat in the morning, hides the television remote, and cries so much when he sees you on your skateboard that Mom makes you let him try it—and he breaks it. You storm out the back door with your golden retriever, Alfie, hot on your heels. You head into the woods that border your back yard. It is a pretty warm evening, and Alfie is panting so loudly you’re sure he can be heard from the house. He looks happy to be out exploring instead of lying around, though, so you don’t send him back home. Besides, you’re happy to have a companion. Even though you’re mad, you don’t really feel like being alone. You make your way further into the woods until you reach the field on the other side.

It’s a great place to blow off steam. The world seems to stretch on forever from here, and the sunset casts everything in a brilliant orange glow.

Suddenly, Alfie stops at the edge of the trees.

“C’mon, boy!” you say. Alfie looks torn. He takes a few tentative steps forward before retreating and barking a few times.

“Shh!” you say. “C’mon, Alfie!” But Alfie just barks again and walks in circles a few times before barking some more. He looks nervous. He stares at you quizzically, tongue hanging out and slobbering everywhere. After a few moments, he turns around and starts trotting back towards the house.

You . . .

A) pull a treat out of your pocket to persuade Alfie to stay.

B) are spooked, so you just start running home.

C) realize that Aflie’s usually a pretty reasonable dog. If he’s acting up, there’s something wrong. You follow him back into the woods. You can hang out there instead.

D) decide to search for whatever it is that’s making him act strange. Is there a wild animal nearby?

E) continue on without Alfie. Whatever! 

What would YOU do? Vote for your answer choice in the Comments below! Click here for your personality quiz results and links to new installments of the story.

See ya around,

image from kids.scholastic.com — En-Szu, STACKS Staffer

August 12, 2014

Surrounded by Sharks

Posted by at 4:12 pm in Authors, Reads, Summer | Permalink

Surrounded by SharksTop 5 things I learned while writing Surrounded by Sharks (for ages 12 and up)

By Michael Northrop

I’ve always been fascinated by sharks and have been a devoted viewer of Shark Week since it first aired in 1987, but even I was surprised by some of the things I discovered when I waded into the research for my latest book.

  1. Sharks are nature’s true smelling machines. Unlike bloodhounds and the owners of the world’s other notable noses, sharks don’t breathe through their nostrils. They use them for only one thing: finding food (and, okay, the occasional mate).
  2. Sharks’ senses are all sharp, but the one they use up close is a sort of underwater spider-sense. They can detect even the tiniest electrical charges in the water, as small as five one-billionths of a volt. If a fish swims by, the shark can sense its bioelectric field, each flick of its tail and beat of its heart.
  3. In the book, Davey stays afloat with the help of a discarded water cooler bottle. About ten million tons of plastic make their way into the ocean each year. And, fictional flotation devices aside, they serve absolutely no purpose other than pollution.
  4. The cool stripes that give tiger sharks their name fade out as they reach adulthood. As with humans, it’s the young ones that have all the style!
  5. While sharks get all the attention, riptides are the real killers at the beach. Over the past ten years, rip currents have killed an estimated one hundred people annually in the US alone. That’s more than floods, tornadoes, lightning, or hurricanes. Sharks are responsible for about one fatality every two years, fewer than fireworks, roller coasters, or falling vending machines.
August 11, 2014

Reader's Bill of Rights

Posted by at 1:16 am in Kid Power, Reads, Writing Prompt | Permalink

Writing Prompt: Shout-outWriting Prompt: Fight for Your Reader Rights!

Reading is one of your passions. You could get lost in a good book for hours, or finish a series within days. You are a bona-fide, certified, qualified READER. But sometimes you run into problems . . . like the library is not open on Sundays in the summer . . . or it’s always too noisy with siblings running around your house. Well, we are writing a Reader’s Bill of Rights, so now’s your chance to state your demands to make it easier for you to be a reader.readerrights

  • Article 1: Quiet time
  • Article 2: Free access to any library in the world
  • Article 3: Libraries open on Sundays

What rights do you think readers should have? Tell us your list of rights in the Comments below, and we will create a complete STACKS Reader’s Bill of Rights for you.

—Ratha, STACKS Writer

August 5, 2014

Adventure Guess the Books Answers

Posted by at 11:44 pm in Reads, Trivia | Permalink

Guess the bookAdventure Guess the Books: Answers Revealed!

Your challenge yesterday was to name the book titles just by looking at these little pieces of the book covers. Did you guess them all?

Here are the answers:

  1. The Kane Chronicles: The Serpent’s Shadow by Rick Riordan
  2. The 39 Clues: Unstoppable: Nowhere to Run by Jude Watson
  3. Heroes of Olympus: The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan
  4. I Survived the Japanese Tsunami, 2011 by Lauren Tarshis
  5. Infestation by Timothy J. Bradley

How did you do? Have you read all these books? Then you should totally join us for the rest of the Adventure Books Bash going on all month long!

image from kids.scholastic.com— Sonja, STACKS Staffer