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      Terror to the Wicked

      by Tobey Pearl

      Jun 2021

      Adult Crossover Nonfiction Plus

      A brutal killing, an all-out manhunt, and a riveting account of the first murder trial in U.S. history, set in the 1600s in colonial New England against the backdrop of the Pequot War (between the Pequot tribe and the colonists of Massachusetts Bay): an explosive trial whose outcome changed the course of history, ended a two-year war, and brought about a peace that allowed the colonies to become a full-blown nation.

      The year: 1638. The setting: Providence, Plymouth Colony. A young Nipmuc tribesman, returning home from trading beaver pelts, is fatally stabbed in a robbery in the woods near Plymouth Colony by a white runaway servant and fellow rogues. Fighting for his life, the tribesman is able with his final breaths to reveal the details of the attack to Providence’s governor, Roger Williams. A frantic manhunt by the fledgling government ensues, followed by the convening of the colony’s first murder trial, with Plymouth Colony’s governor Thomas Prence presiding as judge. The jury: local settlers (white) whose allegiance seems more likely to be with the accused than with the murdered man (a native)…

      Piecing together a fascinating narrative through original research and first-rate detective work, Tobey Pearl re-creates in detail this startling, pivotal moment in pre-revolutionary America, as she examines the evolution of our nascent civil liberties and the role of the jury as a safeguard against injustice.

      The Light of Days: The Untold Story of Women Resistance Fighters in Hitler's Ghettos (Young Readers' Edition)

      by Judy Batalion

      Jun 2021

      Biography Middle Plus

      As their communities across Poland were being destroyed, a group of young Jewish women, some still teenagers, began transforming Jewish youth groups into resistance cells. These “ghetto girls” built systems of underground bunkers, paid off the Gestapo, and bombed German train lines. One of the central figures was eighteen-year-old Renia Kukielka, who worked as a weapons smuggler and messenger across the war-torn country. Other women who joined the cause served as armed fighters, spies, and saboteurs, all risking their lives to help save their people.

      Adapted for young readers, this is the incredible account of the Jewish women who fought back against the seemingly unstoppable Nazi regime. It follows the women through arrests, internment, and for a lucky few, into the late 20th century and beyond. This book includes an eight-page insert of black-and-white photos, so that kids can see first-hand the extraordinary women who bravely fought for their freedom in the face of overwhelming odds.

      Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre

      by Carole Boston Weatherford

      May 2021

      Nonfiction Elementary Plus

      Celebrated author Carole Boston Weatherford and illustrator Floyd Cooper provide a powerful look at the Tulsa Race Massacre, one of the worst incidents of racial violence in our nation’s history. The book traces the history of African Americans in Tulsa’s Greenwood district and chronicles the devastation that occurred in 1921 when a white mob attacked the Black community. News of what happened was largely suppressed, and no official investigation occurred for seventy-five years. This picture book sensitively introduces young readers to this tragedy and concludes with a call for a better future.

      Nicky & Vera: A Quiet Hero of the Holocaust and the Children He Rescued

      by Peter Sis

      May 2021

      Biography Elementary Plus

      Caldecott Honoree and Sibert Medalist Peter Sís honors a man who saved hundreds of children from the Nazis.

      In 1938, twenty-nine-year-old Nicholas Winton saved the lives of almost 700 children trapped in Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia—a story he never told and that remained unknown until an unforgettable TV appearance in the 1980s reunited him with some of the children he saved.

      Czech-American artist, MacArthur Fellow, and Andersen Award winner Peter Sís dramatizes Winton’s story in this distinctive and deeply personal picture book. He intertwines Nicky’s efforts with the story of one of the children he saved—a young girl named Vera, whose family enlisted Nicky’s aid when the Germans occupied their country. As the war passes and Vera grows up, she must find balance in her dual identities—one her birthright, the other her choice.

      Nicky & Vera is a masterful tribute to a humble man’s courageous efforts to protect Europe’s most vulnerable, and a timely portrayal of the hopes and fears of those forced to leave their homes and create new lives.

      There Goes Patti McGee!: The Story of the First Women's National Skateboard Champion

      by Mary Margaret Nienow

      May 2021

      Sports Elementary Plus

      Brought to life by Erika Medina's dynamic and joyful illustrations, There Goes Patti McGee! walks us through Patti first place win in the women’s division of the 1964 National Skateboard Championship. She wowed the judges with with what would become her signature move?the rolling handstand. Inspiring and unapologetic, Patti McGee proves that anyone can skate.

      Secrets of the Sea: The Story of Jeanne Power, Revolutionary Marine Scientist

      by Evan Griffith

      May 2021

      Science Nonfiction Elementary Plus

      The curiosity, drive, and perseverance of the nineteenth-century woman scientist who pioneered the use of aquariums to study ocean life are celebrated in this gorgeous, empowering picture book.

      How did a nineteenth-century dressmaker revolutionize science? Jeanne Power was creative: she wanted to learn about the creatures that swim beneath the ocean waves, so she built glass tanks and changed the way we study underwater life forever. Jeanne Power was groundbreaking: she solved mysteries of sea animals and published her findings at a time when few of women’s contributions to science were acknowledged. Jeanne Power was persistent: when records of her research were lost, she set to work repeating her studies. And when men tried to take credit for her achievements, she stood firm and insisted on the recognition due to her.

      Jeanne Power was inspiring, and the legacy of this pioneering marine scientist lives on in every aquarium.

      "Smelly" Kelly and His Super Senses: How James Kelly's Nose Saved the New York City Subway

      by Beth Anderson

      Apr 2021

      City Elementary

      Kelly used his super-senses and intelligence to make sure that the New York City subway in the 1930s ran safely throughout his lifetime and beyond.

      James Kelly smelled EVERYTHING: rats in the shed; circus elephants a mile away; tomorrow’s rain. His sense of smell was EXTRAORDINARY. But what good was a powerful nose? How could his super-sniffer make him special? In the New York City subway, James found his calling—and earned the nickname “Smelly” Kelly. Armed with his super-sniffer and the tools he invented, he tracked down leaks from the dangerous to the disgusting, from the comical to the bizarre. Then, he sprang into action to prevent cave-ins and explosions in the tunnels beneath the city. Smelly Kelly not only hunted leaks but also saved lives—and he discovered the truly extraordinary power inside him. Beth Anderson’s fast-paced text and Jenn Harney’s comical illustrations bring to life this everyday superhero.

      Grace Banker and Her Hello Girls Answer the Call: The Heroic Story of WWI Telephone Operators

      by Claudia Friddell

      Apr 2021

      Nonfiction Elementary Plus

      Led by twenty-five-year-old Grace Banker, thirty-two telephone operators—affectionately called “Hello Girls” back in the US—became the first female combatants in World War I.

      Follow Grace Banker’s journey from her busy life as a telephone switchboard trainer in New York to her pioneering role as the Chief Operator of the 1st Unit of World War I telephone operators in the battlefields of France. With expert skill, steady nerves, and steadfast loyalty, the Signal Corps operators transferred orders from commanders to battlefields and communicated top-secret messages between American and French headquarters. After faithfully serving her country—undaunted by freezing weather and fires; long hours and little sleep, and nearby shellings and far off explosions—Grace was the first and only woman operator in the Signal Corps to be awarded the Army’s Distinguished Service Medal.

      The Leaf Detective: How Margaret Lowman Uncovered Secrets in the Rainforest

      by Heather Lang

      Apr 2021

      Science Nonfiction Elementary Plus

      Meg Lowman was determined to investigate the marvelous, undiscovered world of the rainforest treetops. Meg’s perseverance and creativity allowed her to achieve this goal, but when this fantastic ecosystem started to disappear, Meg needed to act quickly.

      Meg Lowman was always fascinated by the natural world above her head. The colors, the branches, and, most of all, the leaves and mysterious organisms living there. As a scientist, Meg set out to climb up and investigate the rain forest tree canopies—and to be the first scientist to do so. But she encountered challenge after challenge. Male teachers would not let her into their classrooms, the high canopy was difficult to get to, and worst of all, people were logging and clearing the forests. Meg never gave up or gave in. She studied, invented, and persevered, not only creating a future for herself as a scientist, but making sure that the rainforests had a future as well. Working closely with Meg Lowman, author Heather Lang and artist Jana Christy beautifully capture Meg’s world in the treetops.

      Permanent Record (Young Readers Edition): How One Man Exposed the Truth about Government Spying and Digital Security

      by Edward Snowden

      Apr 2021

      Biography High Plus

      A young reader’s adaptation of whistleblower and bestselling author Edward Snowden's memoir—featuring a brand-new afterword that includes resources to learn about the basics of digital security.

      In 2013, Edward Snowden shocked the world when he revealed that the United States government was secretly building a system of mass surveillance with the ability to gaze into the private lives of every person on earth. Phone calls, text messages, emails—nothing was safe from prying eyes. Now the man who risked everything to expose the truth about government spying details to a new generation how he helped build that system, what motivated him to try to bring it down, and how young people can strive to protect their privacy in the digital age.

      Race to the Bottom of the Earth: Surviving Antarctica

      by Rebecca E.F. Barone

      Apr 2021

      High-Interest Nonfiction Middle Plus

      Equal parts adventure & STEM, this thrilling middle-grade nonfiction book chronicles two groundbreaking voyages to the South Pole.

      In 1910, Captain Robert Scott prepared his crew for a trip that no one had ever completed: a journey to the South Pole. He vowed to get there any way he could, even if it meant looking death in the eye. Then, not long before he set out, another intrepid explorer, Roald Amundsen, set his sights on the same goal. Suddenly two teams were vying to be the first to make history—what was to be an expedition had become a perilous race.

      In 2018, Captain Louis Rudd readied himself for a similarly grueling task: the first solo crossing of treacherous Antarctica. But little did he know that athlete Colin O’Brady was training for the same trek—and he was determined to beat Louis to the finish line. For fans of Michael Tougias’ The Finest Hours and Deborah Heiligman’s Torpedoed, this gripping account of two history-making moments of exploration and competition is perfect for budding scientists, survivalists, and thrill seekers.

      Kate's Light

      by Elizabeth Spires

      Apr 2021

      Biography Elementary Plus

      When Kate Kaird immigrated with her young son Jacob from Germany to America in 1882, she couldn’t have predicted the surprising turn her life would take. She soon met and married John Walker, keeper of the Sandy Hook Lighthouse. They moved to Robbins Reef Lighthouse in New York Harbor in 1885 and she became assistant keeper.

      At first Kate wondered if she could live in such a lonely place, but she gradually grew to love life at Robbins Reef. When her husband died several years later, she was determined to stay on. After convincing the Lighthouse Board that she could do the job alone, Kate was appointed permanent keeper of the lighthouse, becoming one of the first women on the Eastern seaboard to be put in charge of an offshore lighthouse. She lived there 34 years and was known for her many rescues.

      With watercolor and ink illustrations which perfectly capture the salty spray of the sea, Kate’s Light brings the turn of the century New York Harbor to life, with a focus on one of its little known but most crucial attendants.
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