Book Review: Almost Home by Joan Bauer

Title: Almost Home by Joan Bauer
Recommended for: Grades 4-8
Genre: Realistic Fiction; Rebecca Caudill Young Reader’s Book Award Nominee (2015)
Reviewed by: Mrs. Crabtree

Sugar was named “to bring sweetness into people’s lives.” That’s a tough assignment when you’re newly homeless, your father takes off, and you need to care for your sick mother. But Sugar Mae Cole is a strong, spunky twelve year old who finds ways to bring sweetness to others with the help of her rescue dog “Shush,” a caring teacher, and a foster family. As she records her thoughts and dreams in her journal, she realizes that “ home is something you can carry around like a dream.”

This book deals with homelessness, alcoholism, drug abuse and other life issues through the eyes of Sugar, a young girl moved from her familiar home and school in Missouri, to the new world of Chicago.

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Book Review: Under the Egg by Laura Marx Fitzgerald

Title: Under the Egg by Laura Marx Fitzgeraldunder the egg
Recommended for: Grades 4-7
Genre: Mystery
Reviewed by: Miss Lindsy

Theodora Tenpenny has mastered the art of frugality. At thirteen years of age, she knows that she can stretch the meager dollars she has by growing and canning her own beets, altering old clothes she finds in her attic or on the street, and collecting eggs from the chickens in the backyard. Housing is not an issue for her; Theodora and her mother reside in the Greenwich Village townhouse that has belonged to her once-affluent family for decades. But Theo knows that time and money are not on her side. Her grandfather only left $463 dollars when he died two months ago, and her mother, an absentminded genius, spends her days working on equations and theorems that come to nothing.

One day Theo has an accident with some rubbing alcohol and finds that the painting that has hung above the mantelpiece for so many years hides a different painting underneath. It appears to be the authentic (and possibly priceless) work of an Old Master, Raphael. This seems like a great discovery, except…Theo’s grandfather, Jack, used to be a security guard at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Could the painting be stolen?

So the mystery begins. Theo patches together a sleuthing team as she tries to discover the origin of the painting without incriminating her grandfather. Bodhi, the daughter of celebrity parents, has just moved in down the street and is more than happy to partner with Theo in the investigation. Along the way they find that information can come from the most likely places (the hipster librarian Eddie) to the most unlikely (the chestnut vendor they see every day). With smile-inducing characters and a brilliant Manhattan setting, Laura Marx Fitzgerald crafts a masterful mystery not to be missed.

Readalikes:
From the Mixed-up FIles of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg
Masterpiece by Elise Braoch
Chasing Vermeer by Blue Balliett

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Hugs & Kisses

Today’s Baby Play storytime consisted of the following:

Books:

A Kiss Like This by Mary Murphy

Baby Cakes by Karma Wilson

Counting Kisses by Karen Katz

The Cuddle Book by Guido van Genechten

Songs:

“Open, Shut Them”

“Little Red Valentine”

“Yo Te Amo”

Tickles/Bounces:

“Up Up Up”

“I’m Toast in the Toaster”

“This is Big Big Big”

Posted in Youth Program

Early Fall Storytimes

The early fall storytime session begins on September 8th. Mark your calendars and be sure to sign up if you’d like to attend a program that requires registration. You can sign up here, by calling 847.223.5313, or by visiting us at the Youth Services Desk. Hope to see you soon!

Early fall '14 flyer

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Summer Reading Program 2014: Paws to Read

Hills child posterEven though the weather would have you believing otherwise, summer is almost upon us! And that means something else is coming up: the summer reading program! This year’s theme is Paws to Read, and we will be “pawsing” quite a bit!

This year’s program will follow the same guidelines as the last year, in 2013. We will be counting reading days, not just minutes read or books read. To cross off a reading day, you must have read or been read to for at least twenty minutes that day. Prizes are given when signing up and at ten, twenty, and thirty reading days. We will also have activities on the back of the reading log that can be completed for small prizes.

So mark your calendars – summer reading signup begins on Monday, June 2nd and the program will end on July 31st. See you soon!

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Gingerbread House Contest

Picture1For those who bake, construct, decorate and more, we have something for you!  This year, we are hosting a very special Gingerbread House Contest. The contest, for children in grade 1 and up, is divided into the following categories:

Sugar Plum Category: This is a totally edible family entry of gingerbread and candy made by a parent(s) and child(ren).

Lollipop Category: This entry is made by children in grades 1 and 2 without adult help. The structure may be supported by cardboard.

Gum Drop Category: This entry is made by children in grades 3 and up without adult help. The structure may be supported by cardboard.

Entries may be dropped off starting Sunday, December 8th and ending on Thursday, December 12th at 5 PM. The entries may be viewed through Wednesday, December 18th. Each entry must be accompanied by an official entry form. Judges’ decisions are final.

Entries must be picked up by December 20th at 5 PM. No gingerbread house will be kept after that date, no exceptions.

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Winter Reading: Reading is Delicious!

Picture1It’s that time again! As the holidays approach, gear up for winter reading. This year we’ll be counting “reading days.” A reading day is any day that you read or are read to for at least 20 minutes. After 30 reading days, you get a prize! We’ll also have activity prizes that you can earn along the way. The program begins November 23rd and ends January 31st.

As you read your books and visit the library, you can make life sweeter by bringing in a non-perishable food item for the Youth Services Winter Food Drive. The food will be donated to the Avon Township Food Pantry. Just bring your donations to the Youth Services Desk and remember, Reading is Delicious!

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