Book Reviews
what elephants

What Elephants Know by Erick Dinerstein

What Elephants Know by Erick Dinerstein.  Disney Hyperion, 2016, 268 pages Reading Level: Middle Grade, ages 10-12 Recommended for: ages 10-14 Bottom Line: Lowland Tibet is the exotic setting for this coming-of-age story featuring an 11-year-old boy and the elephants he loves. Nandu Sindh was only a baby when he was found by Devi Kali 

Continue Reading…

passion of dolssa

The Passion of Dolssa by Julie Berry

The Passion of Dolssa by Julie Berry. Viking, 2016, 446 pages Reading Level: Young Adult, 12-15 Recommended for: Ages 15-up Bottom line: The Passion of Dolssa is a frank and honest portrait of religious devotion that is true to its time and character. Provincial France, 1241: About fifteen years after the “Albegensian Crusade” wreaked havoc 

Continue Reading…

Talking about Books That Talk about Race

Not a “Newbery Buzz” post because these titles were published before 2016 and are already award winners! But, for similar posts in which Janie and Betsy discuss books, check out our Newbery Buzz series. Janie: Earlier this week, we reviewed two novels about what might be called “the black experience.”  One of them, When I Was 

Continue Reading…

when I was the greatest

When I Was the Greatest by Jason Reynolds

When I Was the Greatest by Jason Reynolds.  Atheneum, 2014, 230 pages. Reading Level: Young Adult, ages 12-15 Recommended for: mature teens, ages 15-18 Bottom Line: A black teen in the ‘hood struggles to maintain his focus when his best friend takes a wrong turn with potentially serious consequences. Even though Allen (Ali) and his 

Continue Reading…

RR_All American Boys

All American Boys by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely

All American Boys by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely. Atheneum, 2015. 320 pages. Reading Level: Young Adult, ages 15-18 Recommended For: mature teens, ages 15-18 Bottom Line: Rashad (a black guy) and Quinn (a white guy) take turns narrating this timely and moving young adult realistic fiction story about police brutality and standing up for what’s 

Continue Reading…