August 2010

These are the books the Children's Area staff reviewed in August 2010. Click on the "check the catalog" link to see if the book is available. If it isn't, ask a librarian to put it on hold for you.

Scroll past these book reviews to see an archive of all of the previous book reviews.

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How to Be Cool in the Third Grade

Robbie wants to be one of the cool kids at school this year. So, he decides that he is going to wear jeans instead of shorts, he will go by Rob instead of Robbie, and lastly there will be no more embarrassing goodbye kisses from his mom at the bus stop. Another major goal of his is to steer clear of the school bully. Unfortunately, Bo the bully singles Robbie out as his primary target for torment, ruining his plans of starting the school year on a "cool" note. It is not until Bo needs Robbie's help that things start turning around for him. A fun read for the cool and the not so cool alike.

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Lost and Found

Lost and Found is yet another moving book by Jeffers. It tells the story of a young boy who, upon finding a despondent penguin on his doorstep, assumes it is lost and decides to return it to its home in the South Pole. During the long and difficult journey, the boy and the penguin forge an unusual bond. Jeffers's simple and lovely illustrations perfectly compliment this heart-warming tale of friendship found. The best part... if you enjoy this book, you can watch the award-winning animated film inspired byLost and Found.

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The Reluctant Dragon

The Reluctant Dragon by Kenneth Grahame tells the story of a rather unusual dragon that would rather recite poetry than joust. Unfortunately, most people don't believe in a poetic dragon so he must always remain watchful of dragon slaying knights. A young boy, who befriends the dragon, recognizes the absurdity of him being considered a threat; however the townspeople are blinded by their prejudice and want the dragon destroyed. It is up to this boy to convince Saint George that the dragon is civilized, and to develop a plan to convince the rest of the town's citizens too. The boy is clever, but is he clever enough to help his gentle friend?

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Kenny and the Dragon

Kenneth Grahame's classic short story, The Reluctant Dragon, is expanded upon in DiTerlizzi's Kenny and the Dragon. Kenny is a young, bookish, rabbit who has only two friends in his village – George, a retired knight, and Grahame, a harmless dragon. When the villagers discover Grahame they demand that George slay him. Now it is up to Kenny to find a way to bring his two friends together and stop them from destroying one another. The novel makes numerous allusions to The Reluctant Dragon, so it may be fun to read the original before embarking on this literary adventure.

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Falling In

Fairies and witches and changelings, oh my! Isabelle Bean has never quite felt like she belongs in this world. Nobody - not her classmates, not her teachers, not her mother, and not her friends (because, well let's face it, she doesn't have any friends) - nobody understands her. Is it because she is always talking in riddles, or is it because of all that buzzing? She just has to figure out what all that buzzing is about. And she does. There is no yellow brick road and it certainly isn't Oz, but there is a witch (good or bad is for you to decide) and she does tumble into an adventure that is out of this world. Hooray for misfits and fantasy!

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