Such exciting news! The 2018 RI Children’s Book Award goes to Barbara O’Connor for Wish! So well deserved! For over a decade HMS hosted Barbara O’Connor for fourth grade author visits, and we have a very special connection and love for Barbara’s incredible writing. My favorite memory is a student asking if Barbara would have body guards when she entered the building. That’s what a celebrity she is in Barrington! Needless to say, we are thrilled to see her win this award!
Watch the RICBA video with Barbara’s special message to RI students.
In honor of WISH winning the 2018 RICBA award, all our books this week will feature dogs!
Our fifth graders have just started reading from the Battle of the Books cart and many are being introduced to the energetic Fenway from Victoria Coe’s Fenway and Hattie series. And many have loved reading Finding Perfect and Smart Cookie by Elly Swartz. Well, have I got news for you. Victoria and Elly are great friends and have just embarked on a new YouTube series called Books in the Kitchen with Elly Swartz and Victoria J. Coe.
In this video, they will teach you how to make dog treats for your furry friends in honor of Fenway from Fenway and Hattie.
In this video, they will share Victoria’s own recipe for chocolate chip cookies in honor of Frankie from Smart Cookie.
This book is the first in a mystery series that should not be sitting on our shelves. I’m sure when readers discover this, there will be holds!
Smells Like Dog (Smells Like Dog #1), (2010)
by Suzanne Selfor
Goodreads summary: Meet Homer Pudding, an ordinary farm boy who’s got big dreams-to follow in the footsteps of his famous treasure-hunting uncle. But when Uncle Drake mysteriously disappears, Homer inherits two things: a lazy, droopy dog with no sense of smell, and a mystery.
Why would his uncle call this clumsy dog his “most treasured possession?” And why did he put a gold coin on the dog’s collar?
And who will continue Uncle Drake’s quest-to find the most coveted pirate treasure in the world?
Join Homer, his sister Gwendolyn, and Dog on an adventure that will test their wits and courage as they leave their peaceful farm and head into a world where ruthless treasure hunters hide around every corner. Where they discover that Dog has a hidden talent and that treasure might be closer than they ever imagined…
Watch the book trailer for Smells Like Dog.
This next book is a new hybrid title written by the same author of the Smells Like Dog mystery series. It is the first in a series. In fact, the next one comes out on April 17th. I’ll be sure to order it for our library!
Wedgie & Gizmo, (2017)
words by Suzanne Selfors and pictures by Barbara Fisinger
Goodreads summary: When a bouncy, barky dog and an evil genius guinea pig move into the same house, the laughs are nonstop! Wedgie is so excited, he can’t stop barking. He LOVES having new siblings and friends to protect. He LOVES guinea pigs like Gizmo! He also LOVES treats!
But Gizmo does not want to share his loyal human servant with a rump-sniffing beast! He does not want to live in a pink Barbie Playhouse. Or to be kissed and hugged by the girl human. Gizmo is an evil genius. He wants to take over the world and make all humans feel his wrath. But first he must destroy his archenemy, Wedgie, once and for all!
Watch the book trailer for Wedgie & Gizmo.
I just checked this brand new book out of the public library. It is based on a true story. I will be ordering it for our library because I know it will find a home in our readers’ hearts.
Strongheart: Wonder Dog of the Silver Screen, (2018)
words by Candace Fleming and pictures by Eric Rohmann
Goodreads summary: A heavily illustrated middle-grade novel based on real events about a canine movie star of the 1920s.
When movie director Larry Trimble travels to Berlin searching for his next big star–a dog!–he finds Etzel, a fierce, highly trained three-year-old German shepherd police dog. Larry sees past the snarls and growls and brings Etzel back to Hollywood, where he is renamed Strongheart. Along with screenwriter Jane Murfin, Larry grooms his protege to be a star of the silver screen–and he succeeds, starting with Strongheart’s first film, The Love Master, which is released in 1921. Strongheart is soon joined by a leading lady, a German shepherd named Lady Julie, and becomes a sensation.
But when Strongheart is accused of attacking a girl, he must prove his innocence–and it will take his best acting skills to do so.
Watch a video of the real Strongheart and Lady Julie from 1924.
If you are looking to read a book in verse, look no further than the incredibly talented Sharon Creech. Tip: If you know someone who is intimidated by chapter books, a book in verse is a great way to build their reading confidence. We have a “Novels in Verse” display with a complete list of titles our library owns.
Love that Dog (Jack #1), (2008)
by Sharon Creech
“I guess it does
look like a poem
when you see it
Jack hates poetry. Only girls write it and every time he tries to, his brain feels empty. But his teacher, Ms. Stretchberry, won’t stop giving her class poetry assignments — and Jack can’t avoid them. But then something amazing happens. The more he writes, the more he learns he does have something to say.
Watch a book trailer for Love that Dog.
The last book of the week is a graphic novel based on a true story.
by Nick Abadkis
Goodreads summary: Laika was the abandoned puppy destined to become Earth’s first space traveler. This is her journey.
Nick Abadzis masterfully blends fiction and fact in the intertwined stories of three compelling lives. Along with Laika, there is Korolev, once a political prisoner, now a driven engineer at the top of the Soviet space program, and Yelena, the lab technician responsible for Laika’s health and life. This intense triangle is rendered with the pitch-perfect emotionality of classics like Because of Winn Dixie, Shiloh, and Old Yeller.
Abadzis gives life to a pivotal moment in modern history, casting light on the hidden moment in modern history, casting light on the hidden moments of deep humanity behind the cold hard facts. It is so much more than history – Laika’s story will speak straight to your heart.
Watch a book trailer for Laika.