Archive for the ‘Juvenile Fiction’ Category

Dig into Summer Time Read Alouds

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

Summer time is a great chance to read aloud from a chapter book with your child! Why read chapter books together?

  • Building Memory: When you break up a story over subsequent sittings, your child must hold the story in his mind and add to it in sections. This will help him build memory skills and develop the attention span he’ll need when he is reading longer books on his own.
  • Complex Stories: A longer story is often a more complex story with more vibrant characters and more detail about the setting or more depth to the action. Your child may enjoy delving more deeply into a book and it is something you can share with her.
  • Life Lessons: As your child matures as a reader, the themes he is reading about will mature also. When you start into a book together you experience the lessons in the book together, as well. How better to deal with more mature topics like bullying, death or bad guys than in an age appropriate book that allows you to stop the narrative and talk about these themes and your family’s values. Try to relate both happy and difficult experiences to your child’s own life. She’ll be developing empathy skills and understanding that the book she is reading represents real emotions and real experiences (even in a fantastical setting) that she also may experience in real life.
  • Vocabulary: Bigger books have more words and more words means more vocabulary! Stop when you hit a difficult word and explain it to your child.  Give words context–a cave is simply a hole in a hillside, but if you mention that caves are often dark and wet and may harbor bears then the word is given some real contextual meaning which may help the story make more sense. If you are stumped too, you now have a perfect reason to demonstrate how a dictionary works–learn something together!
  • Time Fillers: Bring your book with you to the beach, doctor’s visits or on long car rides.  A fifteen minute lull in your day is the perfect reason to read “just one more chapter.”

Can’t wait to dig into read alouds?  We have some great suggestions for books you and your child are bound to love.

We Love New York!

Thursday, November 8th, 2012

Page Turners, the Westerville Public Library book club for 1st-3rd graders, is reading books set in or about New York City for November. If you’d like a taste of the Big Apple, here are some books you might try.

Everyone loves a parade, right? Learn about the story of the Macy’s parade in Melissa Sweet’s Balloons Over Broadway: The True Story of the Puppeteer of the Macy’s Parade.

Or read about Philippe Petit, whose breathtaking feat inspired The Man Who Walked Between the Towers by Mordecai Gerstein.

Did you ever want your own spy route as a child? I certainly did! And it was all because of Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh.

Walk the streets of New York in the 2009 Newbery winning book, When You Reach Me, by Rebecca Stead.

Or visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art with Claudia and Jamie in From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, another Newbery winning book, by E.L. Konigsburg.

Do you have another favorite story set in New York City? Add your recommendation in the comments!

So You Want to Be President?

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

It’s impossible to escape from election fever with candidates campaigning regularly in Ohio. Here are some fun books to answer kids questions and curiosity in a non-partisan way!

Cover of Grace for President

Enjoy the irresistible energy of Grace in Grace for President by Kelly DiPucchio. When Grace learns that a woman has never been president of the United States, she sets out to change that, running for class president. Even the Electoral College is explained in a very straightforward way.

Cover of Bad Kitty for President

Not to be left out, Kitty runs for President of the Neighborhood Cat Club in Bad Kitty for President.  Is she the purrrfect candidate!? Along the way terms like caucus, primary, endorsement and others are explained, along with kissing babies, grassroots campaigning, the role of money and the media, and the perils of mudslinging.

 Cover of So You Want to Be President?

So You Want to Be President? by Judith St. George presents an entertaining glimpse into the president’s lives. “The President never has to take out the garbage.” And “You probably weren’t born in a log cabin. That’s too bad. People are crazy about log-cabin Presidents. They elected eight.” David Small’s cartoon style illustrations (think caricatures!) are a highlight of this Caldecott Award winning title.

Cover of Vote!

A brief history of voting rights is presented in Eileen Christelow’s Vote!  Who has the right to vote? Who decides?

Cover of Those Rebels, John & Tom

Can two people who seem to be polar opposites get along? Find out in Those Rebels, John & Tom  by Barbara Kerley. John Adams and Thomas Jefferson could not have been more different. One short, the other tall; one who loved to debate and could speak for hours on end, the other quiet, preferring to write out his arguments. But united by a common cause, these rebels were instrumental to the formation of our country.

Enjoy learning about history, presidents, and don’t forget to exercise your right to vote this November!


Celebrity sightings coming to a bookshelf near you….

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

You may have grown up with picture books by Jamie Lee Curtis and you may be familiar with Madonna‘s English Roses series (12 books and counting!) and you may have read a book by Jay Leno, Tiki Barber, Julianne Moore, or even the Duchess of York (aka Sarah Ferguson).

Who are these guys?  They are people who have made names for themselves as comedians, sports figures, actors or, in the case of Sarah Ferguson, by marrying a member of the British royal family.  So guess who has written his first fantasy novel?

Kurt Hummel.  That’s right, Chris Colfer, the actor who plays Kurt Hummel in Glee has written his first book! And it’s one he’s been working on since he was TEN YEARS OLD.

Reserve it

Alex and Conner Bailey get a special present from their grandmother for their 12th birthday–a book called The Land of Stories that has been in the Bailey family for a very long time.   The twins are surprised that she has decided to pass it on to them–but not half as surprised as they are when they discover that the book is a portal into a world where familiar fairy tales are true!

Ready to find out what happens?  The Land of Stories hits the shelves July 17, 2012.

And to top it off, the Olympics are exactly 16 days, 1 hour and 11 minutes away (and counting).  While you’re waiting, for the Opening Ceremony on July 27,  why not check out Go-for-Gold Gymnasts, a new series by Olympic gold medalists Dominique Moceanu and Alicia Thompson?

Reserve it!

Reserve it!

This series follows the ups and downs of the members of an elite gymnastics team; each book focuses on one of the team members.  Dominique was the youngest member of the U. S. Olympic team to ever win gold.  She was 14 at the 1996 games in Atlanta, Georgia.  I was surprised to learn that she lives in the Cleveland area, right here in Ohio!

Lastly, for you basketball fans, check out Amar’e Stoudemire’s new series, STAT – which stands for Standing-Tall-And-Talented.  The first book comes out in August.  Amar’e is the captain of the New York Knicks!

Coming soon

Amazing who you’ll meet on our shelves – come check ‘em out!

Review from Tween ARC: Charlie Joe Jackson’s Guide to Not Reading

Thursday, September 1st, 2011

Wondering what new book to be on the lookout for?

 Check out Emily’s review of Charlie Joe Jackson’s guide to not reading:

Charlie Joe Jackson ( or Charlie Joe ) is in middle school. But, believe it or not he has only read one book in his entire life! When his only source to complete his schoolwork tattles, Charlie Joe finds himself in a major pickle. In this hilarious tale involving position papers, bad books, tons of tips, cute crushes, and bad backstabbers, you will laugh your head off and fall in love with the character and the book.

Ages: 9-14

Some bad words!

Other recommendations:
Toby recommends the graphic novel: Marvel 1602

Cailin enjoyed the suspense and mystery surrounding: The Visconti House

Emily recommends Printz Award winner: Shipbreaker

Kailey recommends: Clara Lee and the Applepie Dream


 Flint Heart (New Katherine Paterson, coming soon)

Cailin can’t say enough good things about the amazing: Wonderstruck (New Brian Selznick coming soon)

Robert couldn’t put down: Gregor the Overlander (it’s a series!)

And Cailin also enjoyed: Skary Childrin and the carousel of sorrow
(New–In Process)

Stay tuned for more recommendations from the ‘Tween ARC club. By the way, if you’re in 4th or 5th grade, and LOVE to read and talk about books…there’s room in the ARC! Register on-line!

Meet the ARCs!

Monday, May 16th, 2011

Did you know that Westerville Public Library has hosted a reading club for 4th and 5th graders ?  The Advance Readers Club (aka ARC) has met monthly since October to talk books–and boy, do they LOVE to talk about books!

But not just any books–books that have not yet been published!   You see, the library receives copies of books known in the ‘book biz’ as “advance readers copies”, or “arcs”.  We make these books available to the members of this club and talk about their impressions of those books at the monthly meetings.  In addition, this club has agreed to review new books from Little, Brown and Company.  They send us enough copies of a certain book and our kids read the book and fill out a form and we send their opinions to an editor at Little, Brown.

Here are some of the books they’ve been reading:

Author of Bridge to Terabithia writes the books SHE wants to read.

Tuesday, March 15th, 2011

Katherine Paterson has been writing books since she was a little girl growing up in Shanghai, but not everyone thought she would make it as an award-winning author. What is her secret? She writes what she wants to read….

Stop by the Youth Department to read the latest issue of The National Voice for Creative Kids, in which kid journalist Hayley Schroeder writes about Katherine and how she became the author of such beloved books as Bridge to Terabithia, Jacob Have I Loved and The Great Gilly Hopkins and many more or read the article online here!

Trees Please!

Monday, March 14th, 2011

Trees are everywhere and we love them! Get ready to watch the trees around your neighborhood slowly bud, flower and grow beautiful green leaves! While you are waiting, enjoy books,  songs and finger-plays about our green friends.

Read stories about trees!

Learn facts about trees with books from our new Non-Fiction Readers section!

Here is a fun song about the parts of a tree sung to the tune of “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes”

Leaves (wiggle fingers above head), Branches (hold arms out to the sides),
Trunk (touch belly) and Roots (touch toes). Trunk and Roots.
Squirrels (hold up hands like paws) and Birds (flap arms) and Nests (cup hands together) and Fruits (pantomime picking apples)
Leaves, Branches, Trunk and Roots! Trunk and Roots!

Talk to your child about what animals live in trees. In Ohio, we see LOTS of squirrels! Here is a fun fingerplay about these  ubiquitous critters:

Grey Squirrel, Grey Squirrel, (hold hands up like paws)
Shake your bushy tail! (shake bottom)
Grey Squirrel, Grey Squirrel,
Shake your bushy tale!

Wrinkle up your little nose! (wrinkle nose)
Put a nut between your toes! (tap paws together)
Grey Squirrel, Grey Squirrel,
Shake your bushy tail!

Looking for more? Stop by the Arbor Day Society’s “Teaching Youth about Trees” page for more games, printables and fun!

Have you met our new friends?

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

The only thing better than a good book is a good friend. Did you know the Westerville Library is now home to three new friends?

This is Guinevere. She is a gorilla!

Find books about gorillas!

This is Lancelot. He is a lion!

Find books about lions!

This is Galahad! He is a giraffe!

Find books about giraffes!

Gorillas, lions and giraffes are all animals that live in Africa! You can find lots of books about African animals at the library and then go on a reading safari!

Or stop in to say “Hi!” to our new friends and read to them while you are visiting!

Read This! The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: The Mysterious Howling by Maryrose Wood

Wednesday, April 28th, 2010

The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: The Mysterious Howling by Maryrose Wood

Miss Penelope Lumley is hired right out of school (Swanburne Academy for Poor Bright Females) to work as governess for Lord and Lady Ashton.    She is looking forward to starting her job, but nobody will tell her about the children until she discovers them on her own—in the barn, howling like dogs!  It’s then she learns that she has been hired to “civilize” these kids, who have been raised by wolves (really, they howl, bark, and chase squirrels!). 

The book is a cross between Jane Eyre and Lemony Snicket—with emphasis on the Snicket—and is, pardon me, a howl!   Warning: nothing is neatly tied up—the book ends with a cliff-hanger.

More new chapter books!

More of Miss Susan’s favorite books!