September 10, 2017

Quick Tip: It’s okay to abandon books.

Have you ever started a book and just couldn’t get into it? You gave it a good try and it was not working for you? It happens to me every once in a while. And when it happens I think to myself, “Life is so short and there are too many good books out there to suffer through one that is not working for me.” Yes, I abandon books. I’m sure you have too. I’ve been talking to classes about their reading identity (see post here) and part of the conversation is about having permission to abandon books. I’m hoping with the work we are doing around our reading identities students will better know themselves and how to advocate for their reading preferences.


  • Job applications for Library Council are due to Mrs. Roy by Tuesday, September 12th.
  • Pre-orders for our Chris Tebbetts author visit are due Tuesday, September 12th.
  • Paper copies of both are available at the HMS Library circulation desk.

This week there is a fun author event on Saturday, September 16th from 4:30-6:00pm at Barrington Books. Anika Denise and Jamie Michalak are beloved local authors who are releasing brand new picture books. Come join us for the book launch party!

Starring Carmen, (2017)

words by Anika Denise and pictures by Lorena Alvarez Gomez


Goodreads summary: Meet Carmen! She LOVES the spotlight and applause. She’s an actress, a singer, a dancer—a one-girl sensación! She exhausts her parents with her nightly performances and completely overshadows Eduardo, her adoring little brother. But when Eduardo shows his big sister how much he loves her in a way even Carmen can’t ignore, will Carmen realize that the stage is big enough for two?

Exuberant illustrations by Lorena Alvarez Gómez offer the perfect complement to Anika Denise’s warm, Spanish-sprinkled text in this celebration of theater, family, and imagination.

Joe and Sparky: Party Animals! (2017)

words by Jamie Michalak and pictures by Frank Remkiewicz


Goodreads summary: The endearingly mismatched duo has their hands full when a party for a friend goes comically awry.
One day Joe, an exuberant giraffe, hears a commotion coming from another part of the famous cageless zoo he calls home. Joined by his small, green, slightly more serious turtle friend, Sparky, Joe discovers the source of the hullabaloo: a group of children or noisy short people, as Joe and Sparky call them having a party. Inspired, Joe decides to throw a party for his pet worm, Wiggy. There s just one problem: Sparky is not entirely sure if Wiggy even exists! What will happen when every animal in the zoo shows up to Wiggy s party with presents and cake? Worm or no worm, this silly, satisfying tale is sure to leave new readers smiling.”

The next book featured this week is a title from the RI Children’s Book Award list, an award chosen strictly by children for children. There are 20 nominees. Children in grades 3-5 who read at least 3 books from the list are eligible to vote in February.  Librarian Michelle Steever created a handy sheet to track which titles you read. This title seems like a great fit for anyone who enjoys competitive sports.

Mo’ne Davis: Remember My Name: My Story from First Pitch to Game Changer, (2015)

by Mo’ne Davis


Goodreads summary: Be inspired to reach for your dreams!

At the age of thirteen, Mo’ne Davis became the first female pitcher to win a game in the Little League World Series and the first Little Leaguer to be featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated. A month later she earned a place in the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

This inspiring memoir from a girl who learned to play baseball with the boys and rose to national stardom before beginning eighth grade will encourage young readers to reach for their dreams no matter the odds. Mo’ne’s story is one of determination, hard work, and an incredible fastball.

Mo’ne Davis is a multisport athlete who also plays basketball and soccer, and is an honor roll student at her school in Philadelphia.

With an 8-page full-color photo insert, this memoir celebrates our fascination with baseball in a story of triumph to be shared with generations of young athletes to come.

Watch an interview with Mo’ne Davis.

Here’s a title on our Mock Newbery list. I happen to adore this one for its exquisite writing. We own one copy. You may want to order it from the public library so that you don’t have a long wait.

Beyond the Bright Sea, (2017)

by Lauren Wolk


Goodreads summary: From the author of the critically acclaimed Wolf Hollow comes a moving story of identity and belonging.

Twelve-year-old Crow has lived her entire life on a tiny, isolated piece of the starkly beautiful Elizabeth Islands in Massachusetts. Abandoned and set adrift on a small boat when she was just hours old, Crow’s only companions are Osh, the man who rescued and raised her, and Miss Maggie, their fierce and affectionate neighbor across the sandbar.

Crow has always been curious about the world around her, but it isn’t until the night a mysterious fire appears across the water that the unspoken question of her own history forms in her heart. Soon, an unstoppable chain of events is triggered, leading Crow down a path of discovery and danger.

Vivid and heart wrenching, Lauren Wolk’s Beyond the Bright Sea is a gorgeously crafted and tensely paced tale that explores questions of identity, belonging, and the true meaning of family.

We just processed four new copies of this popular graphic novel series. Every single one was checked out within forty minutes of hitting the display shelves.

A Tale of Two Kitties (Dog Man #3), (2017)

by Dav Pilkey


Goodreads summary: He was the best of dogs… He was the worst of dogs… It was the age of invention… It was the season of surprise… It was the eve of supa sadness… It was the dawn of hope… Dog Man, the newest hero from the creator of Captain Underpants, hasn’t always been a paws-itive addition to the police force. While he can muzzle miscreants, he tends to leave a slick of slobber in his wake! This time, Petey the cat’s dragged in a tiny bit of trouble — a double in the form of a super-cute kitten. Dog Man will have to work twice as hard to bust these furballs and remain top dog!

Watch the Dog Man 3 book trailer.

The RI Festival of Children’s Books and Authors is held annually at Lincoln School in Providence on the Saturday after Columbus Day weekend. It really is a unique opportunity to hear authors and illustrators from near and far talk about their craft, and meet them in person while getting books signed.  I will highlight books of the authors and illustrators who will be attending from now until the event.

Guys Read: Heroes and Villains (Guys Read #7), (2017)

by Jon Scieszka


Goodreads summary: Heroes and Villains, the seventh volume in Jon Scieszka’s Guys Read Library of Great Reading, is chock-full of adventure featuring an array of characters—with and without capes.

Featuring ten all-new, original stories that run the gamut from fantasy to comics to contemporary adventure to nonfiction, and featuring eleven of the most acclaimed, exciting writers for kids working today, this collection is the perfect book for you, whether you use your powers for good—or evil.

Authors include Laurie Halse Anderson, Cathy Camper and Raúl Gonzalez, Sharon Creech, Jack Gantos, Christopher Healy, Deborah Hopkinson, Ingrid Law, Pam Muñoz Ryan, Lemony Snicket, and Eugene Yelchin, with illustrations by Jeff Stokely.

Other books you know by Jon Scieszka:


from left to right: Battle Bunny, Time Warp Trio series,  The True Story of the Three Little Pigs, Math Curse, Knucklehead, Baloney, Spaceheaz series, Squids Will Be Squids, The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales, Science Verse






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