November 27, 2016

This first book is one many students have enjoyed. It is a 2017 RI Children’s Book Award nominee.


Ellie’s Story: A Dog’s Purpose Novel, (2015)

by W. Bruce Cameron

Goodreads summary: Ellie’s Story is a heartwarming illustrated novel adapted for young readers from the beloved and New York Times bestselling A Dog’s Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron.

Ellie is a very special dog with a very important purpose. From puppyhood, Ellie has been trained as a search-and-rescue dog. She can track down a lost child in a forest or an injured victim under a fallen building. She finds people. She saves them. It’s what she was meant to do.

But Ellie must do more. Her handlers–widowed Jakob, lonely Maya–need her too. People can be lost in many ways, and to do the job she was born to do, Ellie needs to find a way to save the people she loves best.

Ellie’s Story is an inspiring tale for young animal lovers. Adorable black-and-white illustrations by Richard Cowdrey bring Ellie and her world to life. A discussion and activity guide at the end of the book will help promote family and classroom discussions about Ellie’s Story and the insights it provides about humankind’s best friends.

Watch the Ellie’s Story book trailer here.

This next book is very near and dear to my heart.  It is on our HMS Mock Newbery list and I am absolutely smitten.


Maybe a Fox, (2016)

by Kathi Appelt and Alison McGhee

Goodreads summary: Sylvie and Jules.

Jules and Sylvie.

Jules adores her older-by-one-year sister, Sylvie.

Sylvie: beautiful like their mother.
Sylvie: supreme maker of tiny snow families.
Sylvie: faster than fast.

Sylvie: gone.

Into thin air, Sylvie goes missing, and as Jules stumbles in grief, a fox cub is born. A shadow fox, spirit and animal in one. From the minute the cub opens her eyes, she senses something very wrong. Someone—Jules.

Jules: steadfast like their father.
Jules: supreme maker of tiny snow foxes.
Jules: collector of rocks.

Jules: heartbroken.

Who is this Jules? Who is this Sylvie she cries out for? And why does the air still prickle with something unsettled? As that dark unknown grows, the fates of the girl Jules and the fox cub, laced together with wishes and shadowy ties, are about to collide.

Watch the Maybe a Fox book trailer here.

I have not had a chance to read this one yet but I’m looking forward to it.   We have so many animal lovers at HMS that I thought our students would enjoy this as well.


Mercy: The Incredible Story of Henry Bergh, Founder of the ASPCA and Friend to Animals, (2016)

words by Nancy Furstinger, pictures by Vincent Desjardins

Goodreads summary: Only 150 years ago, most animals in America were subject to horrific treatment. They needed a champion to protect them from abject cruelty, and that person was Henry Bergh. After witnessing the beating of a horse in the streets of New York and attending a bullfight in Spain, Bergh found his calling. He became an enforcer of animal rights and founded the ASPCA, as well as created many animal cruelty laws. He even expanded his advocacy to children. When Bergh died in 1888, the idea that children and animals should be protected from cruelty was widely accepted: “Mercy to animals means mercy to mankind.”

Read more about author Nancy Furstinger here.

It seems we can never have enough dog books for our students.  This new purchase has already been consistently checked out since it went out on display.


Saving Audie: A Pit Bull Puppy Gets a Second Chance, (2011)

words by Dorothy Hinshaw Patent, photos by William Munoz

Goodreads summary: When Michael Vick’s dog fighting ring was discovered, more than forty dogs were rescued. But their struggle was far from over. Most animal advocates believed the former fighting dogs were too damaged to save, but Audie and his kennel mates would prove them wrong when public outcry and the publicity surrounding Michael Vick’s punishment won them a chance at a happy life. Teaming up once again with William Muñoz, photo-essay veteran Dorothy Hinshaw Patent gives an emotional account of one dog’s heartwarming story, showing how Audie, who was only a puppy when he was rescued, was rehabilitated, adopted, and now enjoys the love he deserves.

Watch the Saving Audie book trailer here.

Read more about author Dorothy Hinshaw Patent here.

This next series was a good suggestion from a fifth grade teacher whose fourth grade daughter was looking for a not so sad book to.  (I admit, I have a tendency to promote a lot of tearjerkers).  She has inspired her classmates to start reading the series as well.  It’s such a good series for this age group! I’m so glad they reminded me of it!


The Boys Start the War (Boy/Girl Battle #1), (2002)

by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor

Goodreads summary: The first book in the hilarious trilogy featuring the feuding Hatford and Malloy families. When a new family–with three daughters–moves into the neighborhood, the Hatford brothers decide to make Caroline and her sisters so miserable that they’ll want to go back to Ohio.

*This says a trilogy but we have 12 in the series in our library.  Students at this age love to get involved in a series.

Check out the website of author Phyllis Reynolds Naylor here.


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