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Tri Disttrict

Tri Disttrict

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Published by Karen Maurer
My favorite books for children and teens for 2011
My favorite books for children and teens for 2011

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Published by: Karen Maurer on Dec 05, 2011
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12/05/2011

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Another Best Books of 2011 list
- put together by Karen Maurer for the Tri-DistrictMeeting at Allentown Public Library, Dec. 6th, 2011
10 Picture Books:
Placed in order of my personal preference
Press Here 
by Herve Tullet. (Chronicle,
978-0811879545
) Simple, bright and visually appealingand very clever, this is an interactive book with no moving parts. Fun for all ages.
Balloons over Broadway 
by Melissa Sweet. (Houghton MIfflin, 9780547199450) Tony Sarg wasa puppeteer who created the Macy
ʼ
s Thanksgiving day parade. Sweet
ʼ
s illustrations mixcollages, mechanical drawings and watercolors. Biographical info is added.
Red Sled 
by Lita Judge. (Simon and Schuster, 9781442420076) A bear finds a red sled outsidea cottage and takes it on a wild nighttime ride with friends.
The Man in the Moon 
by William Joyce. (Atheneum,
 
978-1442430419
)
This picture book opensthe series of chapter books called
The Guardians of Childhood.
Sigh, so pretty.
E-mergency 
by Tom Lichtenheld. (Chronicle, 978-0811878982) E has a fall and O must take E
ʼ
splace in words. This is a very funny book for more accomplished young readers.
I Want My Hat Back 
by Jon Klassen. (Candlewick, 9780763655983) A bear asks everyone hemeets if they have seen his hat, even the rabbit who is wearing a very similar hat. Very funny.
Perfect Square 
by MIchael Hall. (Greenwillow, 978-0061915130) A square is cut, ripped,wrinkled and punched and rearranges itself in wonderful ways. Colorful, clever, inspiring!
Swirl by Swirl : Spirals in Nature 
by Joyce Sidman, pictures by Beth Krommes. (HoughtonMifflin Harcourt, 9780547315836) Sidman
ʼ
s simple text and Krommes
ʼ
dramatic woodengravings picture spirals of many kinds. Nature notes are included at the back of the book.
Me....Jane 
by Patrick McDonnell. This picture book introduces Jane Goodall and her childhoodtoy chimp, Jubilee. Biographical info is appended. So cute!
Blue Chicken 
by Deborah Freedman. (Viking, 9780670012930) A watercolor painting of thebarnyard is complete until one of the chickens decides to help by adding blue!
Other picture books I like in no particular order:
Patrick in a Teddy Bear Picnic and Other Stories 
by Geoffrey Hayes (TOON 9781935179092)
Good Night, Good Night, Construction Site 
by Sherri Duskey Rinker (Chronicle,9780811877824)
Brother Sun, Sister Moon 
by Katherine Paterson (Chronicle, 9780811877343)
Where 
ʼ   
s Walrus? 
by Steven Savage (Scholastic, 978-0439700498)
Everything I need to Know before I 
ʼ   
m Five 
by Valorie Fisher (Schwarz and Wade,9780375868658)
Blackout 
by John Rocco. (Disney Hyperion, 9781423121909)
Best Books 2011 by Karen Maurer
"
1
 
11
 
Fiction Books for Middle Grades (grades 3 through 6-ish):
In order by my personalpreference.
Kat, Incorrigible 
by Stephanie Burgis. (Atheneum, 9781416994473)
 
When Kat
ʼ
s oldest sister isbetrothed to an “old man”, Kat looks for a solution in her dead mother
ʼ
s belongings, unleashingher own considerable and unknown magical powers. Clever dialogue, a headstrong heroineand a likable supporting staff make this a great read for 4th and 5th grades.
The Cheshire Cheese Ca 
t by Carmen Agra Deedy and Randall Wright. (Peachtree,9781561455959) Dickens can not think of an opening line for his newest novel. An alley cat hasa weakness for cheese and despises the taste of mice. An inn full of mice serves the bestcheese in London and hides in its rafters a royal guest. And a mouse who reads and writes triesto solve everyone
ʼ
s problems.
The Romeo and Juliet Code 
by Phoebe Stone. (Arthur A. Levine, 97854515114) Sent to livewith her American relatives while her parents work as spies in WWII, a British girl brings lightand joy to a quirky Maine household. Good people, codes and secrets add up to a heartwarming and heartwrenching story.
Dead End in Norvelt 
by Jack Gantos. (Farrar Straus Giroux, 9780374379933) Semi-autobiographical. Gantos works in a lot of history and small town atmosphere. The year is 1962and Jack is grounded - except for when he has to help the town Medical Examiner, Miss Volker,examine dead bodies and write obituaries. Nosebleeds, melted hands, Japanese war rifles anda plane all feature prominently in this book.
Inside Out and Back Again 
by Thanhha Lai. (HarperCollins, 9780061962783). Forced to leaveViet Nam when Saigon fell, a young girl, her mother and her brothers survive and grow strongduring their first year in Alabama. Winner of the 2011 National Book Award.
Liesl and Po 
by Lauren Oliver. (HarperCollins, 978006201451) Besides having the best booktrailer song out there, this story is about a girl who has lost her parents, and a ghost and griefand friendship and magic.
The Flint Heart 
by Katherine and John Paterson. (Candlewick, 9780763647124) Here is a trueold-fashioned fairytale, about a heart-shaped flint that turns the owner
ʼ
s soul cruel and greedy.Delightful rhymes, characters and illustrations.
Breadcrumbs by Anne Ursu.
(HarperCollins, 9780062015051)
 
Hazel
ʼ
s best friend, Jack, gets apiece of glass in his eye one day and disappears soon after. But not before he turns away fromHazel. It is up to Hazel to brave the wintry woods and rescue her friend in this book inspired byHans Christian Andersen
ʼ
s The Snow Queen. Lovely writing.
True (sort of...)
by Katherine Hannigan. Delly has Impulse-control issues and slowly she turnsfrom an effervescent child into a surly pre-teen. Then she gets the “surpresent” of a new friend,whose issues far surpass those of Delly and who needs Delly
ʼ
s irrepressibility to survive.
Best Books 2011 by Karen Maurer
"
2
 
The Ogre of Oglefort 
by Eva Ibbotson. (Dutton Children
ʼ
s Books, 9780525423829) TypicalIbbotson! A ragtag bunch of lower-magic beings (a hag, a troll, a wizard) and a human orphanare saddled with the chore of rescuing a princess from the Ogre of Oglefort who is as powerfulas he is awful. The whole book is a romp.
Invisible Inkling 
by Emily Jenkins. (Balzer & Bray, 9780061802201) Hanks
ʼ
best friend movesaway right before the start of fourth grade and then Hank finds Inkling, an invisible bandapat,who tells the most outrageous lies and gets Hank in lots of interesting scrapes
Some
 
Other MIddle Grade fiction I liked:
 
My Name is Mina b 
y David Almond
 
(Delacourte Press, 09780385740739)
Darth Paper Strikes Back 
by Tom Angleberger (Amulet Books, 9781419700279)
The Mostly True Story of Jack 
by Kelly Barnhill (Little, Brown and Company, 9780316056700)
Missing on Superstition Mountain 
by Elise Broach (Henry Holt & Co, 978-0805090475)
Tuesdays at the Castle 
by Jessica Day George (Bloomsbury USA, 9781599906447)
Sir Gawain the True 
by Gerald Morris (Houghton Mifflin, 978040547418551)
Secrets at Sea 
by Richard Peck (Dial, 978-0803734555)
Flat Broke 
by Gary Paulsen
(Wendy Lamb Books, 9780385740029 
)
Wonderstruck b 
y Brian Selznick
Amelia Earhart : This Broad Ocean 
by Sarah Stewart Taylor and James Sturm (Hyperion,9781423113379)
The Luck of the Buttons 
by Anne Ylvisaker. (Candlewick, 9780763650667)
12 YA Books
 
(in order of my personal preference)
Scorpio Races 
by Maggie Stiefvater.
 
(Scholastic, 9780545224901) A small Celtic island,carnivorous horses that rise from the sea, a race to the death, a gutsy girl and an enslaved boy!Eat your heart out, Bella and Edward. Love on horseback will carry readers away.
How to Save a Life 
by Sara Zarr. (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 9780316036061) Twoteens, one angry with grief over the death of her father, one trying to do the best for her unbornchild, come together when the widowed mother decides to adopt the baby. By the end, I wascheering all three women on.
Icefall 
by Matthew Kirby. (Scholastic, 9780545274241) The royal children have been hidden atthe end of a frozen fjord as their father fights his latest war. Soon after the king
ʼ
s storyteller, or
skald 
, arrives with a band of berserkers, sabotage begins. Told from the point of view of thesecond daughter and laced with Nordic mythology, this is a wonderful adventure and thriller.
Goliath 
by Scott Westerfeld. (Simon Pulse, 9781416971771
)
 
The end of the
Leviathan 
trilogydoes not disappoint, even though there is considerable early 20th century name dropping goingon (Tesla, Randolph Hearst and Pancho Villa?). Lots of mid-air action, close escapes andsecrets. But, please what exactly is up with the perspicacious lorises?
Pregnant Pause 
by Han Nolan. (Houghton MIfflin Harcourt, 9780152065706) 16-year-old Ellieis pregnant, married to her stoner boyfriend and living at her in-law
ʼ
s weight loss camp in a oneroom cabin
with NO bathroom! 
This book has four of the most selfish well-meaning parentsEVER in it. The ending is unrealistically hopeful but I loved it anyway.
Best Books 2011 by Karen Maurer
"
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