It’s time for another round of reviews for this year’s Mark Twain Award nominees! The following stories have main characters who are searching for something. Somewhat like a mystery, these three books involve solving clues and finding yourself along the way.
“All the Answers” by Kate Messner
In this imaginative story, Ava discovers that having all the answers isn’t always a good thing. When Ava finds a seemingly magical pencil that gives her the correct answer to any question she writes, she thinks she is set. However, Ava begins asking the pencil more difficult questions like why her grandpa has cancer. She comes to the realization that there are some things better left unknown.
This story was very touching, and it was an interesting look at a young character with anxiety issues and how her family helps her cope. Continue reading “Mark Twain Nominee Reviews, Part 3”
It’s time for the second installment of my Mark Twain nominee reviews! Below, I detail three nominees where the main characters overcome major obstacles.
“House Arrest” by K. A. Holt
This book follows the story of Timothy, a teenage boy who is forced to write in a journal to avoid juvenile hall. He got in this less-than-desirable situation because he stole a credit card to pay for medicine for his brother who has a severe birth defect. While this is an excellent story, the ending could have been stronger in my opinion. Read it for yourself, and let me know what you think!
“The War That Saved My Life” by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
This tale, set in the World War II era, is about a young girl named Ada who has a club foot. She is terribly abused and neglected by her mother due to her disability. When the children of London are sent to the countryside for their own safety, Ada is supposed to be left behind. However, she sneaks away with her little brother to a small town by the coast where they are taken in by Susan, a woman who initially doesn’t want them. However, Susan treats them like royalty compared to their mother, and after some time, she begins grows to love Ada and her brother. This book is so heartfelt, and I was rooting for Ada to finally find the happiness she deserves. Continue reading “Mark Twain Nominee Reviews, Part 2”
A few months ago, I made a goal to read all of the Mark Twain Award nominees for the 2017-2018 year. I also decided to share my thoughts with you about each one. I will be reviewing them with you in groups of 3, and each list follows a different theme. Today’s theme is comedy!
“Webster: Tale of an Outlaw” by Ellen Emerson White
I can’t say enough good things about this book. It’s the tale of a dog who is rescued and brought to a shelter. Webster decides that he doesn’t want to be adopted; he wants to be a cowboy. One night he gets the opportunity to escape and go on a grand adventure! Webster finds himself a hero rather than an outlaw as he helps people in the nearby town.
The story discusses serious subjects such as neglect and caring for animals with special needs in a fun, lighthearted atmosphere. It’s impossible not to love Webster and all of his friends.
Continue reading “Mark Twain Nominee Reviews, Part 1”
Well, I did it! I started eating healthy–no more junk food for me. Changing my diet has been the hardest thing I have done in a long time. (I love my carbs!) As difficult as it is, I know it’s even more difficult to encourage your entire family to eat healthy. Especially if your kids are picky eaters.
Now that spring has arrived and fresh foods are becoming more available at the grocery stores and farmers markets, I thought I would sneak you some ideas for healthy snacks that are silly, simple and fun. I hope these quirky cuisines inspire your little ones to try some new healthy foods.
These cute little guys only require three ingredients: grapes, skewers and cute candy eyes (you can use frosting eyes if you choose). Continue reading “Food, Glorious Food!!!”
The Daniel Boone Regional Library has a wealth of resources available to the public. We have countless books, audiobooks, CDs and DVDs for patrons to check out and take home. We also have some wonderful Play as Learning and Little Red Reading Bags that offer puppets, toys, books, DVDs and CDs for children birth through age 5.
One of our lesser-known resources for children are our Learning Props Game Kits. These kits are small, portable bags that double as a game board. Each kit comes with 1 board/bag, 4 game playing pieces, 1 die and a book about the theme. Each bag has a different color and a different theme.
Here’s a full list of our Learning Props Game Kits, including the bag color and description. Continue reading “Get Your Game On!”
The holidays are over, and your children are back at school. Everything should be perfect…until a snowstorm hits, and you are blanketed in the fluffy white stuff. Snow days are great (I love making snow men, having snowball fights and drinking hot chocolate!), but after days of being cooped up, the fun can wear off. As the weather outside turns for the worse, so can your moods. Here are some surefire ways for you and your children to beat cabin fever this winter.
Read stories together.
One thing you can do on a cold day is stay in with your children and read stories. The story “38 Ways to Entertain Your Grandparents” is a fun family read and shows many other activities you can do together.
Continue reading “Beat Cabin Fever!”
If you love both libraries and dogs you will adore “Madeline Finn and the Library Dog” by Lisa Papp. Madeline is a frustrated little girl who claims that she hates to read. Every time she has to read aloud in class, she messes up words and doesn’t earn a gold star.
Madeline’s mother does all she can to help her daughter feel more confident about her reading skills. One day she takes Madeline to their local library where Madeline meets Bonnie. Bonnie is a large white shepherd dog. She is an excellent listener and doesn’t care if Madeline messes up the words sometimes. Continue reading “Books We Love: Madeline Finn and the Library Dog”
Some kids (and parents!) dread that first day back to school, but no one dreads it more than the poor dad in our next Missouri Building Block Award Nominee, “Dad’s First Day” by Mike Wohnoutka.
In this story, we meet a father and son duo who spend all their time playing, singing and having fun together. Oliver, the son, is excited for Kindergarten, and he can’t wait for his first day. When the big day finally comes, he’s ready to go. However, his dad isn’t quite sure. Dad tries to stop Oliver from leaving for school by claiming that his tummy aches and by hiding behind the couch and in the closet. But when they finally arrive at school, Dad feels better when he sees Oliver playing and having fun with his new friends.
This book is a particularly great read for kids who are entering a new school year, and it’s a wonderful father-son read. If you enjoy this book and have read at least five of the nominees, you can vote for your favorite.
Click here to find more stories and activities related to “Dad’s First Day.”
It looks like it is Ragweed time again…No, not the ragweed that causes allergies! It’s time for this adorable book about an energetic little farm dog named Ragweed.
In “Ragweed’s Farm Dog Handbook” by Anne Kennedy, the main character is an expert farm dog ready to show you the ropes on how to be the best farm dog there is. He mentors the reader, teaching them everything from which animal wakes the farmer up in the morning to what job the cows do all day long.This story is bound to appeal to lovers of farms, dogs and comedy. Continue reading “Ragweed’s Farm Dog Handbook”