Booktalks are added to my Booktalks Quick and Simple webpage http://www.nancykeane.com once a month. See some of Booktalker's booktalks before they are published on the website. Make comments and give suggestions, too. Listen to Booktalks daily podcast: http://nancykeane.com/rss.html And don't forget to check out my wiki ATN Reading Lists http://atn-reading-lists.wikispaces.com
Applegate, Katherine. THE ONE AND ONLY IVANNew York : Harper, 2012IL 3-6, RL 4.0ISBN 0061992259 Attention animal fans! Meet Ivan! Ivan is a silverback gorilla who lives in a glass and metal enclosure at the Big Top Mall and Video Arcade which is “conveniently located off I-95”. Ivan lives there with an old elephant named Stella and Bob, a stray dog. Ivan watches TV, draws pictures and sometimes he throws me-balls (dried balls of gorilla dung) at the humans coming to see him. This story is told by Ivan and his story changes when Ivan promises his friend Stella to take care of Ruby, a newly arrived baby elephant Ivan’s story is based on a true story of a Gorilla now living at Zoo Atlanta. The real life Ivan is also a painter of pictures Read about Ivan and his animal and human friends in “the One and Only Ivan”. (Booktalk written by Lorreen Keating-GSF Committee/North Hampton Public Library)
Haworth, Danette. ME & JACKNew York : Walker & Co., 2011IL 3-6, RL 4.5ISBN 080279453XTwelve-year-old Joshua Reed was used to being the new kid in town, and he knew he needed to keep under the radar until kids got to know him. His dad was a US Air Force recruiter, and they moved around a lot. His widowed father didn’t have it easy, especially since the Viet Nam War broke out; not only was the war unpopular, but he also worried constantly about Joshua’s safety and wellbeing while he was at work. Much to Joshua’s delight, his dad let him pick out a guard dog to protect him and keep him company. The big dog, which he promptly named Jack, looked a little strange; especially his ears, which glowed red when he got excited. People seemed to be spooked, even a little afraid of him. Joshua soon learned that Jack was a Pharaoh hound, a very rare breed of hunting dog.Just as Joshua was beginning to make friends with a guy down the street named Ray, Ray’s rich, spoiled cousin Prater began bullying tactics to prevent the new kid from breaking into their closed society. So when neighbors reported overturned trash cans, a ransacked chicken coop and other complaints, Prater was all too ready to point the finger at Joshua’s dog, Jack. When a cat was killed and Prater’s beloved horse was attacked, it became an all-out witch hunt. Joshua’s dad didn’t seem to know what to believe, so it was up to Joshua to clear Jack’s name. (Booktalk written by Luci Albertson- GSF Committee/Bedford Public Library)
Oliver, Lauren. LIESL & PONew York : Harper, 2011IL 3-6, RL 6.5ISBN 006201451XLiesl lives in an attic bedroom, locked away by her cruel stepmother. Liesl’s only companions are mice until one night a ghost appears. It is Po, a lonely ghost looking for someone to be with. Then, there’s Will, the alchemist’s apprentice. He delivers potions and magic to customers. One night, he bungles a delivery, switching powerful magic with something that is not magical at all. Liesl is able to escape her prison with Po’s help. Will is running for his life after his mistake is discovered. These three are drawn together on an adventure like no other. (Booktalk written by Susan MacDonald- GSF Committee/Weeks Public Library)
Ripken, Cal. HOTHEADNew York : Disney/Hyperion Books, 2011IL 3-6, RL 5.2ISBN 1423140001Connor Sullivan plays baseball for his Babe Ruth league team, the Orioles. He’s an All-Star shortstop and a cleanup hitter. The team is glad they have him. He has skill, dedication and he’s funny. But, lately, Connor just isn’t the same. Maybe he’s worried about something at home or working too hard. Whatever the reason, his temper is out of control. When Connor makes a mistake at the games, he erupts with a temper outburst. He slams his batting helmet down and throws his glove. His opponents are calling him “Psycho Sully”. Jordy, Connor best friend is starting to avoid him. Coach Hammond is thinking about benching him. Now, the school newspaper is doing an article about Connor’s temper tantrums including some embarrassing photos! The championship game is coming up, so Connor has to get his act together. Will he help the team win or will his temper get the best of him? (Booktalk written by Susan MacDonald-GSF Committee/Weeks Public Library)
Christopher, Lucy. FLYAWAYNew York : Chicken House, 2011IL 5-8, RL 5.0ISBN 0545317711Thirteen year old Isla and her Father have a special bond with the Whooper Swans that migrate to their area each winter. When her father collapses during a swan watching outing, Isla and her family’s focus is on her Father’s recovery. While at the hospital, Isla meets a young cancer patient named Henry. Henry and Isla watch a lone Whooper Swan from Henry’s hospital window and the two become friends. Her Father’s illness brings the family closer to their Grandfather who is a retired vet. Flyaway is a story with characters you will really care about and you will find yourself searching the internet for photos and videos of these amazing birds. (Booktalk written by Lorreen Keating-GSF Committee/North Hampton Public Library)
Bruchac, Joseph. DRAGON CASTLE New York : Dial Books for Young Readers, 2011 IL 5-8, IL 5.7 ISBN 0803733763 Imagine being a prince, smarter than your parents and your older brother. That is the fate of young Prince Rashko. When the King and Queen suddenly disappear, the young princes are left to handle the castle affairs. Soon after, the uninvited Baron Temny drops in with his entourage. Prince Rashko is taken aback when his simpleminded brother welcomes the group. Is Rasko the only one that can sense danger? What were his parents thinking when they left the castle? Will the Baron succeed with his obvious plot? Find out what happens as Prince Rasko discovers things are not always they seem. (Booktalk written by Catherine Ryan- GSF committee/ New England College)
Cotler, Steve. CHEESIE MACK IS NOT A GENIUS OR ANYTHINGIt is end of the school year for fifth graders Ronald "Cheesie" Mack and his friend Georgie. They learn they can't afford to go to summer camp they have both gone to for several years. While in the basement, looking for spiders to scare his older sister, Georgie and Cheesie discover a yellowed envelope with one corner torn off. Inside the envelope is a folded up piece of paper containing a silvery metal heart on a chain and one penny. Throughout this story, Cheesie and Georgie provide lots of useful information like: How to say Gloucester, MA properly, Why you should not bring a bag of mice to school, and how to do the right thing when you find something that isn’t yours. You can also visit Cheesie at his very own website “CheesieMack.com”. (Booktalk written by Lorreen Keating- GSF Committee/North Hampton Public Library)
Snyder, Laurel. BIGGER THAN A BREAD BOXNew York : Random House, 2011IL 3-6, RL 5.7ISBN 0375869166Rebecca’s father has been out of work for a while and her mother has run out of patience trying to keep the family financially afloat so one day she packs up and drives off with 12 year old Rebecca and two year old Lew in the car. They leave Baltimore and head for their grandmother’s house in Atlanta where Rebecca’s mother has already found a job and chosen a school for Rebecca. Soon after their arrival Rebecca discovers an old red bread box in the attic and quickly finds out that when she wishes for something that fits inside the bread box, it appears. When she needs a birthday present for her mom, she wishes for a spoon. Over time she wishes for new clothes for herself and money, and things like pens, candy and lip gloss to give away to her new friends at school. Rebecca’s repeated wish to return to her real home in Baltimore and to her father eludes her. She never stops to think about where all the things come from until her life gets so complicated that she has to decide what she really wants and how the magic of the bread box can help her achieve it. (Booktalk written by Suzanne Wall-GSF Committee/Merrimack Public Library)
McElligott, Matthew. BENJAMIN FRANKLINSTEIN LIVESNew York : Putnam's, 2010IL 3-6, RL 4.4ISBN 0399252290In 1790 Benjamin Franklin died.Or did he?Working with a secret team of scientists, Franklin found a way to cheat death … sort of. Franklin has spent the last 200 years in suspended animation in a sub basement in Philadelphia. A chance lightning strike (of course), reanimates Ben, and he finds himself in the apartment building of science nerd Victor Godwin. Victor must not only help him adjust to the modern world but also help him overcome a slight flaw: the reawakened Ben Franklin needs a particular amount of energy to keep going - too little and he's a zombie looking for electricity instead of brains. Too much and he becomes a rampaging monster. Just the right amount, fun with Ben Franklin in the 21st Century! All this while trying to take first place in the school science fair. With one of history's preeminent scientists helping out, what possibly could go wrong? (Booktalk written by Sara Zoe Patterson-GSF Committee/ New Franklin School)
Sierra, Judy. ZOOZICALNew York : Knopf, 2011IL K-3, RL 3.2ISBN 037586847XEven though the zoo animals are now wild about books, in the dead of winter when no one comes to the zoo, they get bored. Really, really bored. The pandas even quit being cute. But when the hippo collapses and scares a little hippo into the air, they get an idea. A wonderful idea. They decide to put on a show.
Shahan, Sherry. ICE ISLANDNew York : Delacorte, 2012IL 3-6, RL 4.3ISBN 0385741545The Iditarod. Who hasn't heard of this race? It takes place in Alaska every year. This is the story of a 13-year-old growing up in Alaska and dreaming of running the Iditarod. When Tatum and her friend are out on a run, Tatum finds herself in a very dangerous spot. The two get off course and get lost. And then a blinding storm comes up. Cole's sled is damaged and some of the dogs just aren't up to pulling. Tatum decides to take her sled and a team of dogs and go for help. But it certainly won't be easy.
Scott, Elizabeth. THE UNWRITTEN RULENew York : Simon Pulse, 2010IL YAISBN 1416978917Brianna and Sarah have been best friends since Kindergarten. Brianna is beautiful. Sarah is not. Sarah has had a crush on Ryan since ninth grade but now he is dating Brianna. When Ryan begins to like Sarah more than Brianna, we have the classic love story. What should Sarah do? If she gives in to her feelings, she knows it will hurt Brianna terribly. After all, it is the unwritten rule that you don't date someone your best friend has feelings for. Will Sarah finally put herself first?
Salisbury, Graham. CALVIN COCONUT : MAN TRIPNew York : Wendy Lamb, 2012.IL 3-6, RL 4.4ISBN 0385739648When his mom's boyfriend wins tickets for a trip, he asks Calvin Coconut to come with him. They are going to take an airplane from Oahu to the Big Island and go deep-sea fishing. What an opportunity. Calvin has never been on an airplane and he certainly has never gone deep-sea fishing. Will Calvin catch his first big fish? And what will happen when they run into an angry marlin?
Rubel, David. THE CARPENTER'S GIFT : A CHRISTMAS TALE ABOUT THE ROCKEFELLER CENTER TREENew York : Random House, 2011IL K-3, RL 2.3ISBN 0375869220A long time ago, people living through The Great Depression, had very little money. Many people lost all their money in the stock market and there was very few jobs that were hiring. Henry remembers his family living through those tough times. And he remembers the Christmas of 1931 when his father cut down evergreen trees and brought them to Rockefeller Center to sell. They made friends with some local workers and gave the last of the trees to them. Imagine their surprise when the workers thank them by building them a new home. They let Henry help them and he never forgot the kindness. Years later when Henry is all grown up, a tree on his land is chosen to be used as the Christmas tree in Rockefeller Center. The wood from the tree is given to a family so they can build their own house.
Potter, Alicia. MRS. HARKNESS AND THE PANDANew York : Knopf, 2012IL 3-6, RL 3.5ISBN 0375844481This is the story of a woman who was the first person to bring a panda to America. In 1934, Mrs. Harkness' husband went to China to find a panda. He eventually died in China before finding a panda to bring home to his wife. So she decided to travel to China to find one for herself. It wasn't an easy task. The journey was filled with dangers. Travel with Ruth Harkness as she boards a steamship to Shanghai and travels up the Yangtze and on into the mountains.
Primavera, Elise. THE HOUSE AT THE END OF LADYBUG LANENew York : Robin Corey Books, 2012IL K-3,RL 3.2ISBN 037585584XImagine what it is like for Angelina. She comes from a long line of neat freaks. One of her ancestors even invented the trash can. Dad has a habit of vacuuming the grass. And Mom irons the linguini. But Angelina is a far cry from a neat freak. She is a bit on the messy side. She was wrinkly and rumpled. When a hard of hearing ladybug overhears Angelina wishing for pets, she thinks she wants a house full of pests!! Just try to imagine how that goes over with the neatest family in town.
Perro, Bryan. THE KEY OF BRAHANew York : Delacorte, 2012IL 5-8, RL 5.3ISBN 0385739044This is the second installment of the Amos Dragon series. In the first, 12-year-old Amos survived his first mission as a Mask Wearer. And now he takes on a journey like no other. Amos has been killed and now he is on his way to Braha along the River Styx. He is accompanied by Jerik, a criminal who has been decapitated and now carries his head with him wherever he goes. Jerik tells Amos that Braha is overcrowded with spirits wanting to move on but the gods have locked the doors that lead to paradise or down below. It is up to Amos to find the key to open the doors so the spirits can complete their journey. Maybe then he can return to the land of the living.
Patterson, James. THE FIREBoston : Little, Brown, 2011IL 5-8, RL 5.0ISBN 0316101907In the final book of the Witch and Wizard series, we find Whit and Witsy Allgood running for their lives. The two know that they may be the world's only hope against the One Who Is The One, but what can two teens with diminishing powers ever hope to do against the cruel dictator? They have watched their parents' execution and have seen the One's army wiping out the Resistance. Whit and Witsy are forced to split up to try to defeat The One. Is Witsy up to this? Does she have enough fire power to defeat someone so cruel?
O'Connor, Geroge. OLYMPIANS. 3, HERA, THE GODDESS AND HER GLORYNew York : First Second, 2011IL 5-8, RL 3.7ISBN 1596437243This is the story of Hera, Queen of the Gods. There are many myths about Hera and her dealings with her husband Zeus. And her treatment of Heracles. She was one saucy goddess with a powerful attitude. Driven mad by Hera, he ended up killing his own children. To make amends, he is assigned ten labors to purify his soul and be granted immortality. Read about Hera as you may never have seen her before.
Nivola, Claire A. ORANI : MY FATHER'S VILLAGENew York : Frances Foster Books, 2011IL K-3, RL 5.0ISBN 0374356572Author Claire Nivola writes about her childhood visits to Orani, Italy. Her parents escaped to the United States in 1939 but never stopped loving their birth place. Beginning in the 1950s, Claire's family traveled to Orani for many memorable summers. She shares memories of her cousins, marriages, babies, old men, and family meals. Come along and enjoy summers in Orani.
Nelson, Marilyn. SNOOK ALONESomerville, MA : Candlewick, 2010IL K-3, RL 3.6ISBN 0763626678Snook is a little rat terrier dog who lives on an island with a monk named Abba Jacob. Each day, Snook follows his owner and loves the time spent with him. They are as close as can be. But then things change. A huge storm comes and Snook is washed up on a nearby atoll. Here he must learn to fend for himself. He is all alone. He misses his friend and is scared of all they things that are new to him. He prays that Abba Jacob will come and rescue him. Is there any hope of that?
Mull, Brandon. A WORLD WITHOUT HEROESNew York : Aladdin, 2011IL 5-8, RL 5.1ISBN 141699792XMeet Jason Walker. He is just your average boy living an average, boring life. He goes to school. He plays baseball, and he volunteers at the local zoo. One day, all this changes. When Jason falls through a crack in the hippo tank, he finds himself in a totally different world. Here he meets Rachel who has also found herself trapped in Lyrian. The two teens try desperately to find a way out but get caught up in a power struggle in Lyrian. Jason knows one syllable of a magic word that will free the citizens of Lyrian. And he sets off on a quest to find the rest of the word. This is the first book in the Beyonders series.
Moss, Marissa. THE BRAVEST WOMAN IN AMERICANew York : Tricycle, 2011IL K-3, RL 3.1ISBN 1582464006This is the story of a woman who lived in the 1800s. Ida Lewis lived with her family in a lighthouse off the coast of Rhode Island. She loved listening to the stories her father told her about the storms and the daring rescues. When her father became ill, it was up to Ida to run the light house. When a terrible storm hits and the lives of sailors are on the line, will Ida be up to the challenge of saving them?
Mills, Claudia. MASON DIXON : FOURTH GRADE DISASTERSNew York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2011IL 3-6, RK 5.3ISBN 0375868747Mason Dixon is now heading into fourth grade. Instead of looking forward to it, he is dreading it. All because all fourth graders are required to be in the chorus. Mason had a very embarrassing experience in Kindergarten and he doesn't want to repeat that. But Mason has come up with a brilliant plan to get out of singing in the chorus.
Mills, Claudia. MASON DIXON : BASKETBALL DISASTERSNew York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2012IL 3-6, RK 5.7ISBN 0375868757Misfit Mason has survived his experience in the fourth grade chorus. But now he may be facing something worse. Basketball. He really has no interest in playing basketball but his best friend Brody is so excited and begs Mason to join. That is fine for athletic Brody but what about clumsy Mason? To make matters even worse, father even volunteers to coach the team. Will this be another disaster for Mason?
Meyer, Marissa. CINDERNew York : Feiwel and Friends, 2012IL YAISBN 0312641893Cinder is a gifted mechanic. Have a repair that needs done? Cinder is your girl. Well, Cinder is actually a cyborg. In New Beijing post-World War IV, Earth is a very different place. Cyborgs are treated poorly. And Cinder is no different. She works all day in her booth in town but all her wages go to her step-mother. No one else in the family works but they sure know how to spend her money. Her step-mother has no use for Cinder other than her paycheck. One of her step-sisters is good to her and that makes it tolerable. While Cinder is not allowed to go to the Prince's ball until her chores are finished, she dreams of the handsome Prince. Little does her step-mother know but Cinder has met him. But when the plague stikes Cinder's step-sister, she is sold to the doctor who is researching a vaccine. Cinder knows that none of the cyborgs who have been experimented on have survived.
Messner, Kate. SEA MONSTER'S FIRST DAYNew York : Chronicle Books, 2011IL K-3, RL 3.0ISBN 0811875644Do you remember your first day of school? I bet you were excited. And maybe a little scared. That is how Ernest is feeling. But he is looking forward to making lots of new friends. It just doesn't turn out that way. As much as he tries, he finds that making friends may be the hardest part of school.
Messner, Kate. OVER AND UNDER THE SNOWNew York : Chronicle Books, 2011IL K-3, RL 3.0ISBN 0811867846A father and child are cross country skiing through the woods. The woods are quiet and they spot a few animals. The father explains how animals live under the snow. The crevasses trap warmer air and the subnivean animals spend their time under the snow. Above the snow, animals are waiting. Come and join in for a ski through the winter forest.
Martin, Ann M. THE DOLL PEOPLENew York : Hyperion Books for Children, 2000IL 3-6, RL 4.6ISBN 0786803614Annabelle and her Doll family have lived in the dollhouse for many, many years. They are a family of Victorian china dolls. Way back in 1955, Aunt Sarah Doll disappeared and Annabelle is now determined to find her. This means leaving the Doll house in search of clues. But they have all taken the Doll Oath to keep their lives secret from the people in the house. Annabelle is determined to use the clues she’s uncovered in Sarah’s journal to get to the bottom of the mystery. Things get complicated with the arrival of a new doll house and a new family of dolls.