Ebo is alone. His brother, Kwame, has disappeared, and Ebo knows it can only be to attempt the hazardous journey to Europe, and a better life, the same journey their sister set out on months ago. But Ebo refuses to be left behind in Ghana. He sets out after Kwame and joins him on the quest to reach Europe. Ebo’s epic journey takes him across the Sahara Desert to the dangerous streets of Tripoli, and finally out to the merciless sea. But with every step he holds on to his hope for a new life, and a reunion with his family.
As the author notes although Illegal is a work of fiction all of the different portions of it are true, and events similar to what happen to Ebo happen to children, teens, and adults each day. This graphic novel is a compassionate look at the plight of refugees and immigrants. Readers will gain empathy for Ebo as the novel does not shy away from the terrible events that happen to him but his positive outlook lessens the overwhelming nature of the tragedies. The graphic novel would be an excellent teaching tool- to combine with history lessons or current events. Readers who enjoy graphic novel memoirs or graphic novel nonfiction such as Spinning by Walden or March by Lewis should check out this book.
You can find Illegal by Eoin Colfer in the Juvenile Graphic Novel section at J GRAPHIC COLFER.
For this Throwback Thursday Ruth Anne recommends: Fair Weather by Richard Peck.
In 1893, thirteen-year-old Rosie and members of her family travel from their Illinois farm to Chicago to visit Aunt Euterpe and attend the World’s Columbian Exposition which, along with an encounter with Buffalo Bill and Lillian Russell, turns out to be a life-changing experience for everyone.
Richard Peck passed away on May 23, 2018- but his books are well regarded and on their way to becoming classics. This is perfect for readers who enjoy historical fiction especially readers who live in and around Chicago and Illinois. Full of humor and fast-paced this is also a great inter-generational story that shows relationships between children and grandparents.
You can find this book in the Juvenile Fiction section at J PECK.
~ra & aw
Polly Diamond and the Magic Book by Alice Kuipers is the story of a young girl, Polly, who discovers magic and has many misadventures. Polly loves to write stories and begins to put them in a special book. She soon discovers that everything she writes about will appear in real life. Certainly, all of Polly’s dreams will come true. Come to the library to check out a copy of this book to see if all of Polly’s dreams are as magical as they seem.
You can find Polly Diamond and the Magic Book in the Juvenile Fiction section at J KUIPERS.
Esperanza and her mother are forced to leave their life of wealth and privilege in Mexico to go work in the labor camps of Southern California, where they must adapt to the harsh circumstances facing Mexican farm workers on the eve of the Great Depression.
While not as old as many of the books that I have recommended for Throwback Thursday (this one was published in 2000) this book has many honors attached to it. Esperanza Rising was named an ALA Notable Children’s book in 2002, a YALSA Best Books for Young Adults in 2001, and the Pura Belpre Award in 2002. This is a great read for middle-grade children who are interested in historical fiction, and particularly those with in interest in the Great Depression.
You can find this book in the Juvenile Fiction section at J RYAN.
Miniature people who live in an old country house by borrowing things from the humans are forced to emigrate from their home under the clock.
What could be more fascinating than the idea that there could be tiny people hiding in your own house- borrowing things and living just under your nose? This classic children’s novel was the inspiration for the Disney and Studio Ghibli movie The Secret World of Arrietty. First published in 1952 in the United Kingdom and 1953 in the United States- this book also won the British Carnegie Medal in 1952 which is awarded to the year’s most outstanding children’s literature by a British author. This is great for reader’s who enjoyed books like The Doll People by Ann M Martin.
You can find this classic in the Juvenile Fiction section at J NORTON.
Jerome, a twelve-year-old black boy, is shot. A white officer said he had a gun. No first aid is offered. Jerome dies, however, his story does not end. He comes back as a ghost and witnesses the events that unfold in the aftermath of his shooting and death. To follow Jerome’s journey in the afterlife, pick up a copy of Ghost Boys by Jewell Parker Rhodes.
You can find this book in the Juvenile Fiction section at J RHODES.
Today I Recommend Love, Penelope written by Joanne Rocklin and illustrated by Lucy Knisley.
Love, Penelope is an illustrated novel about a basketball loving girl named Penelope who can’t wait to welcome her new baby sister to the world. Penelope is in fifth grade and lives with her two mothers with happiness. Penelope writes every day in her journal about her life, addressing them all to her soon to be baby sister. Penelope and her friends face big problems and try to overcome them together, like fabrications (lies), school projects, heritage and family.
I loved this novel so much. Penelope is very lovable with the big words she uses and the jokes she and her friends tell. One of my favorite things in this novel has to be the fact that one of Penelope’s friend owns a goat. The goat helps calm down the girls by letting the girls pet itself and get milked. This book was very enjoyable and I recommend this book to anyone because it covers a lot of topics that is very diverse.
~Teen blogger, Elizabeth N.
You can find this book in the Juvenile Fiction section at J ROCKLIN.
Anne, an eleven-year-old orphan, is sent by mistake to live with a lonely, middle-aged brother and sister on a Prince Edward Island farm.
First published in 1908, this is another great classic book of historical fiction that has been adapted into many movies. This would be great for anyone who enjoyed the Little House series by Laura Ingalls Wilder or the more recently published When Mischief Came to Town by Katrina Nannestad.
You can find this book in the Juvenile Fiction section at J MONTGOMERY.
A year in the life of two young girls growing up on the Wisconsin frontier, as they help their mother with the daily chores, enjoy their father’s stories and singing, and share special occasions when they get together with relatives or neighbors.
This is the book that started the well known series by Laura Ingalls Wilder. It was first published in 1932. I loved this book as a kid, and first encountered it when my mother read it to me aloud. Laura is a protagonist who is easy to cheer for and it is touching to read about her as she grows up. This classic is a perfect choice for those who love historical fiction or are interested in pioneers.
You can find Little House in the Big Woods
and the rest of this series by Laura Ingalls Wilder in the Juvenile Fiction section at J WILDER.
The Vanderbeeker family have been happily living in their Harlem brownstone apartment unit their landlord refuses to renew their lease. Now, they have five days before Christmas to convince him to let them stay. Each of the five siblings craft a different strategy to change his mind.