Friday, May 30, 2008

The Penderwicks are back!

Birdsall, Jeanne (2008). The Penderwicks on Gardam Street. 308 pages. Grades 4-8.

Jane, Skye, Rosalind, Batty, and hound, of course, are back in the sequel to The Penderwicks! When Aunt Claire arrives with a letter for their father written before their mother passed away, the girls are not happy to learn that their mother intended for their father to start dating.
They immediately hold an emergency meeting in which they plan to sabatoge the dating effort by finding the worst possible dates for their dad. But, when they meet their next door neighbor, Iantha, one of the Penderwicks imagines what it would be like to have her as a mother. In addition to the "Save the Daddy" plan, Skye and Jane switch homework assignments and suffer the consequences, albeit mostly humorous ones. Join the Penderwicks in this laugh out-loud sequel and find out if they manage to deter their father from dating or if they're in for a surprise.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Watch out Brothers Grimm, here come the Sisters Grimm!

Buckley, Michael (2005). The Fairy Tale Detectives. (The Sisters Grimm, bk. 1) 284 pages. Grades 4-6.

Sabrina and Daphne Grimm are sisters who have been sent to live with their grandmother, whom they believed was dead. Their parents have been missing for over 2 years and they have lost hope of being reunited with them. When they arrive at their grandmother's home, Sabrina and Daphne find themselves in a fairy tale world complete with pixies, Jack (from Jack and the Beanstalk), the Three Little Pigs, and of course Prince Charming. Before they have a chance to settle in, the Grimm family is on the case of a giant who has crushed a farmer's home. But, before the sisters can learn more about this unusal world and their new family,
their grandmother is kidnapped by the giant and the Grimm sisters must save her!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Silly Picture Books

In Alethea Kontis’ Alpha Oops! The Day Z Went First, the alphabet is interrupted by the letter ‘Z’ and Zebra who are tired of going last. ‘Z’ gets his way and begins the alphabet, but he doesn’t get very far when ‘P’ interrupts him! Soon the middle letters want a change too and the alphabet is completely out of order with ‘D’ following ‘R’ and ‘B’ after ‘G’! Children who know their ABCs will find this book extremely funny.

Children will love Victoria Kann’s Pinkalicious in which a young girl has one too many pink cupcakes and becomes pink herself! At first she enjoys being pink, but when she turns red after eating sneaking one more cupcake she decides to take the doctor’s advice and eat her vegetables. This is a silly and imaginative lesson in what might happen if you over indulge in sweets.

Another silly book is David Shannon’s A Bad Case of Stripes in which Camilla Cream who worries about what others think of her begins to turn different colors until an older woman helps her discover her true colors.

In Alan Durant’s Burger Boy, Benny only eats hamburgers and when his mother warns him that he will turn into a burger if he does not eat his vegetables, the prediction comes true! It is then up to his mother to turn Benny back into a regular boy by feeding him vegetables. A perfect and very funny book for picky eaters!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Great ghost story for summer nights.

Hahn, Mary Downing (2007). Deep and Dark and Dangerous. 187 pages. Grades 4-7.

While searching through the attic, thirteen year-old Ali finds an old photograph of her mother and aunt at their lake house in Maine. She notices that the photo is torn away where a third figure would have been next to her mother and aunt. The only clue to the person's name is the letter 'T' on the back. Who could it be and why did someone tear them out of the picture?

Ali's aunt, Dulcie, invites her to go back to the Maine lake house for the summer and babysit her daughter Emma while she works on her paintings. Ali agrees hoping that she will learn more about the person who was once in the old photograph. When they arrive, Emma and Ali meet a girl named Sissy, who is not very nice to girls, but won't leave them alone. She tells them about a girl named Teresa who drowned during the summer while their mothers were at the lake house. Could Teresa be the mysterious girl from the photograph?

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Wonderful historical fiction novel!

Rinaldi, Ann (2007). Come Juneteenth. 246 pages. (Grades 5-7).

The Emancipation Proclamation was issued in 1863, but it took two and a half years for Texas slave owners to inform their slaves for fear of an uprising. Fourteen-year old Luli has grown up during the Civil War alongside Sis Goose, a slave who was raised as Luli's sister. The girls tell each other everything, but when Lincoln issues the Emancipation Proclamation, Luli is forbidden to tell Sis Goose that she is free. When Union soldiers arrive in Texas, Sis Goose learns that she has been free for over two years. Her trust in Luli is broken and she is forced to run away with a Union soldier, which results in a devastating tragedy.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Looking for a new adventure book?

Flanagan, John. The Ruins of Gorlan. (Ranger's Apprentice, bk. 1) 249 pages. (Grades 4-8)

Will has always wanted to be a knight, but when the time comes for him to be chosen as an apprentice, he is chosen by the Ranger instead of the Battleschool. At first Will is upset with this position, but overtime he realizes that this may be his true calling. Being a Ranger's apprentice is no easy task and when the kingdom is attacked by horrible beasts, Will and the Ranger work together to defeat them.

Friday, May 16, 2008


Did you know that you can download and listen to Children's books at home?
eAudiobooks are just like books on CD or tape, but you can download and listen to them without leaving home!
Click here to browse and download eAudiobooks.
Click here to register for eAudiobooks. (Must be a Needham resident to use)

Upcoming Music Programs

Music, Movement, and Me for ages 0-4.
Join Sara Epstein in the Children's Library for a fun, exciting, interactive early childhood music and movement class. We sing, dance and play to/with a variety of music all genres. Shaker eggs, bells, sticks, puppets, scarves and other fun, colorful props are used to delight the children and stimulate their senses. We learn basic rhythm and pitch in a fun, non-competitive and safe environment.

Tuesday June 3, 10:30-11:30 am (storytime room)
Tuesday June 17, 10:30-11:30 am (storytime room)

Registration begins one week before each session.
Maximum of 20 children, plus adult. Please sign up for only 1 session in June.

Drop-In Sing-Along with Ed Morgan, "The Music Man" for ages 2.9 - 5.
Join Ed in singing, clapping, and movement songs in the Storytime Room.
Friday June 13, 3-3:45 pm (storytime room)
Thursday July 10 and 24, 3-3:45 pm in the community room.

Adults are required to attend all music programs with their child.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Recently Added Fiction

Barber, Tiki. Kickoff! 153 pages. Grades 4-6.
Tiki and Ronde's summer is winding down and it will soon be time to start junior high. This year they will tryout for the Hidden Valley Eagles team, but there is much more competition than in elementary school. Will Tiki and Ronde make the team or spend the season on the bench?

Berkeley, Jon. The Tiger's Egg. 400 pages. Grades 4-7.
In the second book from The Wednesday Tales, orphan Miles Wednesday joins the Circus Bolsillo with his angel-friend Little. Hoping to find out more about his parents, Miles joins Doctor Tau-Tau on a journey, which he believes will lead to his father, but he soon finds out that Doctor Tau-Tau is on a quest to find the Tiger's Egg instead.

Doder, Joshua. A Dog Called Grk. 241 pages. Grades 5-7.
When Tim Malt finds a dog called Grk near his home in London, he tries to find Grk's owner. After doing some detective work, Tim learns that Grk belongs to Natascha Raffifi who has been kidnapped along with her parents and taken back to their homeland in Eastern Europe. Tim is determined to return Grk to Natascha and manages to get to Stanislavia where she is being held prisoner. Will he rescue Natascha and reunite her with Grk?

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Great books for young mystery lovers.

Stevenson, James. The Mud Flat Mystery. 56 pages. (PreS - Grade 2)
In 12 short chapters the animals of Mud Flat attempt to figure out what is inside a box that has been left on the front porch of Duncan's home. You'll laugh at all the funny things the animals do while guessing what's inside the box.

A young girl tries to put together clues left by her detective father about the mysterious history of a ship called the Mary Celeste. In 1872 the ship was found with no passengers on board. A great book to read aloud and discuss the different theories of what may have happened. The main text is presented in a large box, while smaller boxes provide definitions for unknown terms.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Read-Aloud Book Club

You still have time to join our Read-Aloud Book Club for 1st and 2nd Graders!
It has been postponed until May 14 at 4 pm.

We will read Stuart's Cape by Sara Pennypacker (56 pages), do fun activities, and have a discussion about each chapter. You do not have to read the book ahead of time as we will be reading a chapter (or two) every week.

  • Date: Wednesdays May 14, 21, and 28

  • Time: 4-5 pm

  • Place: Craft Room in the Children's Library

You must attend all 3 sessions. Questions? Call (781) 455-7559 ext. 204.