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Flight School

Flight School by Lita Judge. Atheneum, 2014, 32 pages. Reading Level: picture book Maturity Level: all An ambitious penguin arrives at flight school with visions of success. Teacher and Flamingo stifle their doubts and patiently include him until the truth can no longer be denied: “I’m sorry, birdie,” said Teacher. “Penguins just aren’t built to fly.” […]

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Curiosity

Curiosity, by Gary Blackwood. Dutton, 2014, 310 pages. Reading Level: Middle Grades, Ages 11-12, Young Adult, ages 12-14 Maturity Level: 5 (Ages 12-14) Philadelphia, 1836: Rufus Goodspeed has led a sheltered life as the only child of his sheltered father, a Methodist minister. Partially crippled from birth (which birth also took his mother), Rufus feels […]

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Grandmaster

Grandmaster, by David Klass. Farrar Strauss and Giroux, 2014, 226 pages. Reading Level: Young Adult, Ages 15-18 Maturity Level: 6 (15-18) What if you discovered that your nerdy dad is a superhero? That’s what happens to Daniel Pratzer—sort of, though Dad doesn’t suddenly zoom across the sky in tights and a cape.  Daniel doesn’t make […]

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Seven Stories Up

Seven Stories Up, by Laurel Snyder. Random House, 2014, 229 pages. Reading Level: Middle Grades, Ages 8-10 Maturity Level: 3 (ages 8-10) Annie and her mom arrive in Baltimore on a sad mission: to say farewell to Annie’s grandmother, who is on her deathbed in the former luxury hotel built by her great-grandfather. Grandmother is […]

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Where Angels Tread

The Garden Gate, by Christa Kinde.  Zondervan, 2014, 301 pages.   Age level: 10-up Prissie Pomeroy can see angels.  In fact, most of her friends are angels.  In this fourth book in the Threshold series, change is coming to West Edinton.  Prissie and her family face change firsthand as their family business, both orchard and […]

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Hickory Dickory Dog by Alison Murray

Hickory Dickory Dog by Alison Murray. Candlewick, 2014 (first published in U.K. in 2012), 32 pages. Reading Level: Beginning, Picture Book Maturity Level: All Murray applies her signature style in this bold, colorful picture book. Using the familiar nursery rhyme, “Hickory Dickory Dock,” Murray tells the story of a young boy and his dog throughout the […]

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The Warden and the Wolf King

The Warden and the Wolf King, by Andrew Peterson. Rabbit Room Press, 2014, 519 pages. Reading Level: Young Adult, ages 12-14 Maturity Level: 3 and up (from age 10) Janner, Kalmar, and Leeli are the children of Nia and Esben Wingfeather, though they never knew their father. Esben was once the High King of Anniera, […]

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The Desperate Adventures of Zeno and Alya

The Desperate Adventures of Zeno and Alya, by Jane Kelley. Feiwel & Friends, 2013, 201 pages. Reading Level: Middle Grades, Ages 8-10, Ages 11-12 Maturity Level: 3 For Zeno, it starts like any normal day, except that Dr. Asgard, his servant, seems to be taking a nap on the floor. None of the noises Zeno […]

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Pigsticks and Harold and the Incredible Journey by Alex Milway

Pigsticks and Harold and the Incredible Journey by Alex Milway. Candlewick, 2014. Reading Level: Early Chapter Book, Ages 4-8 Maturity Level: All Charmingly illustrated with the same humorous touches James Marshall often added to his works, Pigsticks and Harold are delightful early chapter book friends you must introduce to your children. Pigsticks comes from a […]

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For the Birds

NOTE: Today we begin experimenting with new formats for our book reviews, in anticipation of some big changes ahead–and we need your feedback!  Please scroll down below the review for more. National Wildlife Federation World of Birds: a Beginners Guide, by Kim Kirki. Black Dog & Levanthal, 2014, 80 pages including glossary and index. Reading […]

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For the Birds II

Feathers: Not Just for Flying, by Melissa Stewart, illustrated by Sarah S. Brannen. Charlesbridge, 2014, 32 pages. Reading Level: Picture Book, Ages 4-8 Maturity Level: All “Birds and feathers go together, like trees and leaves, like stars and sky. All birds have feathers, but no other animals do.” And did you know . . . […]

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