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.
A baby girl washes ashore in a tiny skiff. She is found and given the name Crow. As Crow grows, she becomes increasingly curious about many things. Where did she come from? Why is there a light burning on a supposedly deserted island? Is a famed pirate treasure hidden nearby? If you are interested in finding the answers to these questions and more, read Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk.
You can find this book in the Juvenile Fiction section at J WOLK.
This story, told from the animal’s perspective, captures the struggles and triumphs of this magnificent creature from his early days as a free colt to an owned creature poorly treated by evil men.
First published in 1877, this classic tale told from the point of view of the horse really captures your attention. I loved horses as a kid and read every book I could find about them. This story is great for the horse lovers and anyone who enjoyed Misty of Chincoteague by Marguerite Henry or any of her other horse stories. This story was also adapted into two great movies, one from 1994 (my personal favorite) and one from 2014!
You can find Black Beauty in the Juvenile Fiction section at J SEWELL.
After his parents die, Jeffrey Lionel Magee’s life becomes legendary, as he accomplishes athletic and other feats which awe his contemporaries.
Published in 1990, this book by Jerry Spinelli was an American Library Association Children’s Notable Book in 1991 and won the Illinois Reader’s Choice – Rebecca Caudill Young Reader’s Book Award in 1993. Readers who enjoy realistic fiction will love this classic!
You can find this book in the Juvenile Fiction section at J SPINELLI.
As further evidence of his family’s bad fortune which they attribute to a curse on a distant relative, Stanley Yelnats is sent to a hellish correctional camp in the Texas desert where he finds his first real friend, a treasure, and a new sense of himself.
I read the book well before the movie was released but I am always happy to recommend this book and the movie! This is a fun adventure story that focuses on a friendship that grows to include all of the boys who are prisoners of a terrible correctional camp in Texas. This book is also quite the award winner – Newbery Medal, Illinois’ Rebecca Caudill Award in 2002, and an American Library Association Notable Children’s Book in 1999. Published in 1998, this book is not as old as some that I recommend but it is certainly a classic.
You can find it in the Juvenile Fiction section at J SACHAR.
Laura and her family move to Minnesota where they live in a dugout until a new house is built and face misfortunes caused by flood, blizzard, and grasshoppers.
First published in 1939, On the Banks of Plum Creek is the fourth in the series of Little House books that cover the life of Laura Ingalls Wilder. Anyone who loved Little House in the Big Woods or Little House on the Prairie will not be disappointed by this next entry in the series as Laura and her family grapple with moving to Minnesota and all the challenges that brings. You can find this book in the Juvenile Fiction section at J WILDER.
It’s Throwback Thursday! Today I recommend: The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett.
Ten-year-old orphan Mary Lennox, sent from India to England to live in a lonely house on the Yorkshire moors with her unpleasant uncle, discovers an abandoned and unusual garden on the north country estate and invalid cousin.
First published in 1909, this is a charming tale about an orphan girl who while originally unpleasant due to being alone and abandoned slowly grows to realize that she does not have to be alone and tries to help both her cousin and the abandoned garden. This story has also been adapted in a movie released in 2009. Librarian Mrs. Rose recommends this book!
You can find The Secret Garden in the Juvenile Fiction section at J BURNETT.
Having shared so many foster homes that they are unable to trust that the family that has adopted them will last, Flora and her brother, Julian, are assisted by their new mother on a journey to resolve their past so that they can build a future.
This is a serious and thought provoking read that deals with topics such as foster care, families, and trauma as siblings Flora and Julian deal with the question of how they could be born if they don’t have a biological mother and how long their adoptive mother will be around (she says forever).
You can find Forever, or a Long, Long Time in the Juvenile Fiction section at J CARTER.
Today we recommend: The First Last Day by Dorian Cirrone.
Eleven-year-old Haleigh Adams paints a picture with a mysterious set of paints she found and now she is stuck in a time loop, but when she realizes her parents have been keeping a secret she and her new best friend Kevin must find the source of the magic paints and the secret of the time loop before it is too late.
Haleigh doesn’t want summer to end and finds herself repeating her last day of summer break over and over again. As you might expect, this turns out to be less fun than she thought especially when it turns out that lives are at stake. This is a really fun summer read, the writing is realistic (you know except for the time travel), and the tone is humorous. If you’re a fan of time-loops like in the movie Groundhog Day then this is the book for you! You can find it in the Juvenile Fiction section at J CIRRONE.