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Children’s Book Reviews: Firsts

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Laurie Elizabeth Flynn’s debut, Firsts, is an edgy, heart-breaking novel about teen sexuality and relationships. Seventeen-year-old Mercedes Ayres offers a unique service to the virgin male students of her high school: she gives them some practical experience in bed and provides basic instruction in how to give their girlfriends the perfect first time she never… Read more »

Children’s Book Reviews: Charmed

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Charmed is Michelle Krys’ second novel in The Witchhunter series about a teenage witch named Indigo Blackwood. At the beginning of the book, Indie is still reeling from her mother’s horrific murder, the discovery of her own magic powers, and her escape from the Priory, a group of sorcerers on a mission to rid the… Read more »

Children’s Book Reviews: The Girl in the Well is Me

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In The Girl in the Well is Me, a new book by Finding Ruby Starling middle grade author Karen Rivers, one girl’s pursuit of popularity goes horribly awry. Living in what eleven year-old Kammie calls, “Nowheresville, Texas,” all she wants to do is make her fresh start by having the ‘right’ kind of friends. Kandy,… Read more »

Children’s Book Reviews: If I Had a Gryphon

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Vikki VanSickle’s first picture book, If I Had a Gryphon, features the imaginative musings of a disgruntled pet owner.  Sam thinks her snoozing, drooling hamster is pretty humdrum.  While poring over a book of mythological creatures, the young gal fantasizes about an exciting life as caretaker to exotic animals.  She longs for a lavender unicorn… Read more »

Children’s Book Reviews: Mission Mumbai

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Mission Mumbai: A novel of sacred cows, snakes, and stolen toilets is an engaging, funny novel by the award-winning author of the Tara trilogy, Mahtab Narsimhan. It transports the reader directly into the tumultuous, dazzling streets of Mumbai. Dylan Moore and Rohit Lal are best friends in New York, but this summer they’re on a cultural… Read more »

Children’s Book Reviews: Spirit Level

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In Sarah N. Harvey’s Spirit Level, Harry Jacobs’ decision to track down her siblings begins a life-changing journey through the many, varied iterations of her family. Harry Jacobs has never been interested in tracking down her biological father. A donor-conceived child, Harry was always content with her mother and unofficially adopted grandmother, Verna. When Harry’s… Read more »

Children’s Book Reviews: Hot Pterodactyl Boyfriend

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In Hot Pterodactyl Boyfriend, Alan Cumyn, author of The Secret Life of Owen Skye, Dear Sylvia, and After Sylvia, and the 2013 young adult title, Tilt, brings us a story about encountering the absurd and beautiful in the “other,” and in yourself. Shiels, a confident high school senior, has almost everything under control. As student… Read more »

Children’s Book Reviews: Movers

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Middle grade author of Urgle, Meaghan McIsaac showcases her considerable world-building skills with her latest novel, Movers. Living in a world unwillingly tethered to the future, Patrick and his younger sister Maggie are Movers who are trying to avoid trouble after their father’s untimely shelving. Feared by regular people for their inexplicable ability to connect… Read more »

Children’s Book Reviews: Worms for Breakfast

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In Worms for Breakfast, award-winning author Helaine Becker explores the fascinating eating habits of zoo animals.  At feeding time, zoo keepers whip up delicacies such as “Gorilla Gobble-‘Em-Ups” (a tasty concoction of boiled carrots, monkey chow and dried ants), “Predator Popsicles” (a frozen animal bone treat), and “Kelp Tank Goulash” (a mixture of krill, smelt… Read more »

Children’s Book Reviews: Don’t Tell, Don’t Tell, Don’t Tell

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Author of The Color of Silence, Liane Shaw’s new novel, Don’t Tell, Don’t Tell, Don’t Tell, tackles the idea of keeping secrets through the revealing perspectives of Frederick, a young man dealing with Asperger’s Syndrome, and Angel, a young woman trying to fit into yet another high school. Bound by a promise to Angel to… Read more »