Ages 5-11

Lost in the Woods

In this critically acclaimed film version of Carl Sams and Jean Stoick’s bestselling children’s book, a lost raccoon, Fernando Hernandafandavez--voiced by AADL staff member, Diego Ascani!--is confused by the signs of spring until he finally gets a little help from a wise old box turtle named Shirley. Using live action nature footage and photographic stills, filmmakers Laura and Robert Sams carefully match up the characters' dialogue and movements on screen for a fun and clever way to teach young viewers about animal behavior and their environment.

Hold the Flag High by Catherine Clinton

William H. Carney is an officer of the first all African-American regiment of the Civil War. Carney’s determination not to allow the flag to touch the ground inspired his men to move forward into battle. Catherine Clinton gives an historical account of the first African American who earned the Congressional Medal of Honor.

The Dragon King of Hogwarts

It's true--a recently discovered dinosaur fossil in South Dakota has been named Dracorex hogwartsia after the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. In case you've been hiding in a cave for the past ten years, Hogwarts' most famous student is young Harry Potter. Dracorex hogwartsia earned its name because the dinosaur's flattened head looks a lot like a dragon, and dragons play an important role at Hogwarts. (Their Latin motto, in fact, translates to "a sleeping dragon must never be tickled.") Read more about the dragonlike pachycephalosaur or go see it the next time you are in Indianapolis.

So Funny it Hurts

When coming under a vicious, stinging fairy attack Clemency remembers her Peter Pan and firmly, quickly, and repeatedly asserts her disbelief in fairies... but her aim is a little off. Now she has to go on a quest to save all the fairies she killed.

Read Clemency Pogue: Fairy Killer, by J.T. Petty. So funny...so,so funny...tears...down the face...side-hurts-must-top-funny...

*This has become a recent favorite of mine so I had to mention it. Just curious though if anyone has listened to the audio version. I'm wondering if the clever wordplay translates well into the audio realm.

New York, New York! The Big Apple from A to Z by Laura Krauss Melmed

New York New York The Big Apple from A to Z takes you on an alphabetical tour of some of the major tourist spots in New York City. Each page has a poem dedicated to a particular sight and facts, history and information in small captions. Watercolor illustrations add a colorful backdrop. This book is fun for native New Yorker's like myself or anyone interested in this great city.

History Bits - Girl Inventor

Mattie E. Knight was a natural inventor. At 8 years old, she invented a footwarmer for her mother, so her mother could keep her feet warm as she sewed late into the night to support the family. When she worked in the fabric mills by 13, she invented a shuttle stop to protect workers from injury when the looms malfunctioned. As a young adult she developed the machine that would fold paper into square bags ... the kind we carry groceries in today. Marvelous Mattie is a picture book biography about a girl at the turn of the century who held drawings and patents on her inventions.

History Bits: Houdini

Houdini World's Greatest Mystery Man And Escape King is a new picture book biography on Harry Houdini, the escape artist and magician. It was written by Kathleen Krull and illustrated by Eric Velasquez.

Pearl's Picks for Youth and Teens

Librarian extraordinaire Nancy Pearl joined us at the Downtown library on Sunday for a talk about books, reading, and writing. She suggested several great books for young people, from picture books like Knuffle Bunny and Skippyjon Jones to chapter books like Three Terrible Trins, Whales on Stilts, and Ragweed. For teens, she especially liked Feed, by the same author as Whales on Stilts, Lisa Yee's Millicent Min, Girl Genius, Richard Peck's Teacher's Funeral, and the difficult but moving story in Looking for Normal by Betty Monthei. Already read these? Ask any librarian for more suggestions.

Show Way by Jacqueline Woodson

Jacqueline Woodson’s 2006 Newbery honor book Show Way traces her maternal family history from slavery, to the Civil Rights movement to the present day in eloquent poetic rhythm. Show Way is the quilt sown by slave women with an encrypted map that showed the way to freedom. The illustrations reveal both the fear and hope of African Americans throughout history.

Jeanne Birdsall’s Coming to Town!

The National Book Award winning author of The Penderwicks will be joining many enthusiastic readers at the Ann Arbor Book Festival on Saturday, May 13th at 12:00 pm. This delightful romp for kids is the perfect summer read!

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