Staff Selections Kids

Mary

Ounce, Dice, Trice
Alastair Reid, illus. by Ben Shahn

In the tradition of A Hole Is to Dig, this charming New York Review publication explores the wilds of word usage, encouraging young readers and writers to play with words and enjoy the potential of language.  Ben Shahn’s character illustrations complement the individualist  sentiment of this book perfectly.

Tim

The Books of Umber: Happenstance Found
P. W. Catanese

There's a new thrill on every page of this book, with fantastic characters and narrow escapes and magical beings one after the other.  Happenstance, our young hero, has no memory of who he is or where he came from.  Taken under the wing of Lord Umber (adventurer, explorer, collector of rare and magical things), Hap comes to live with Umber in the "medieval" port city of Kurahaven.  But who is Hap?  And who is that hooded figure following him?  And who, really, is Lord Umber?  A fun, Indiana Jones-style adventure with an edge-of-your-seat climax that's sure to please the young action reader.  The second book of this new series is in paperback, while the third is still in hardcover -- so there's plenty more to read once you're hooked!

Victoria

Wonder
R. J. Palacio

Ten-year-old Augie Pullman, born with a rare genetic, disorder causing a severe facial deformity (a "tiny, mushed-up face" is what Augie calls it). is a smart, witty kid tackling relationships in a tiny school community after years of home -schooling.  In a realistic, engaging style the story of Augie's first year in middle school is told by many characters - his sister, her former best friend, Augie's classmates and their parents, his headmaster, and, of course, Augie.  5th - 8th grade readers will discover themselves in Wonder. a fast, thought-provoking, heart-felt read.