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      Digging for Words: José Alberto Gutiérrez and the Library He Built

      by Angela Burke Kunkel

      Nov 2020

      Multicultural Elementary

      In the city of Bogata, in the barrio of La Nueva Gloria, there live two Joses. One is a boy who dreams of Saturdays—that’s the day he gets to visit Paradise, the library. The second Jose is a garbage collector. From dusk until dawn, he scans the sidewalks as he drives, squinting in the dim light, searching household trash for hidden treasure…books! Some are stacked in neat piles, as if waiting for José´. Others take a bit more digging. Ever since he found his first book, Anna Karenina, years earlier, he’s been collecting books—thick ones and thin ones, worn ones and almost new ones—to add to the collection in his home. And on Saturdays, kids like little Jose run to the steps of Paradise to discover a world filled with books and wonder.

      With an evocative text by a debut author, and rich, stunning illustrations from an up-and-coming Colombian illustrator, here is a celebration of perseverance, community, and the power of books.

      A Very Big Problem

      by Amy-Jill Levine

      Nov 2020

      Religious Books Elementary

      In the beginning, God's garden is beautiful and peaceful, but it doesn't stay that way. Everyone has something to say! Rain brags that it’s the most refreshing. Birds boast that they’re the most splendid. Earthworms bluster about their busyness. Then Children come along, claiming to be the best of all. And it’s only fair that the best is loved most, isn’t it?

      Evelyn Del Rey is Moving Away

      by Meg Medina

      Nov 2020

      City Elementary

      Evelyn Del Rey is Daniela’s best friend. They do everything together and even live in twin apartments across the street from each other: Daniela with her mami and hamster, and Evelyn with her mami, papi, and cat. But not after today—not after Evelyn moves away. Until then, the girls play amid the moving boxes until it’s time to say goodbye, making promises to keep in touch, because they know that their friendship will always be special.

      The tenderness of Meg Medina’s beautifully written story about friendship and change is balanced by Sonia Sánchez’s colorful and vibrant depictions of the girls’ urban neighborhood.

      Breaking the Ice

      by Angie Bullaro

      Nov 2020

      Sports Elementary Plus

      The inspiring true story of Manon Rhéaume, the first and only woman to play a game in the National Hockey League, featuring an afterward from Manon herself.

      “One day, a woman will play in the National Hockey League. If no one prevents her,” said a twelve-year-old Manon Rhéaume. Manon always dreamed of playing hockey. So, when the team her father coached needed a goalie, five-year-old Manon begged for the chance to play. She didn’t care that she’d be the only girl in the entire league or that hockey was considered a “boys’ sport” in her hometown of Lac-Beauport, Quebec, Canada. All she cared about was the game. After her father gave her that first chance to play, she embarked on a spectacular, groundbreaking career in hockey.

      At every level of competition, Manon was faced with naysayers, but she continued to play, earning her place on prestigious teams and ultimately becoming the first woman to play a game in the NHL. Including an afterword written by Manon herself, Breaking the Ice is the true story of one girl’s courage, determination, and love for the sport.

      On Account of the Gum

      by Adam Rex

      Nov 2020

      Humor Elementary Plus

      From the madcap mind of Adam Rex comes a book about the improbable, downright bizarre remedies for a problem kids have faced since the creation of gum.

      How do you get gum out of your hair—a pair of scissors? Butter? The cat? Call your aunt, she'll know what to do. She doesn’t? Try the fire department!

      With each page turn, this situation—relatable to any family—grows stickier and more desperate.

      If You Come to Earth

      by Sophie Blackall

      Nov 2020

      Kindergarten Plus

      If You Came to Earth is a glorious guide to our home planet, and a call for us to take care of both Earth and each other.

      This stunning book is inspired by the thousands of children Sophie Blackall has met during her travels around the world in support of UNICEF and Save the Children.

      • An engaging storybook about a single curious and imaginative child
      • Simultaneously funny and touching
      • Carries a clear message about the need to care for the earth and each other.

      If you come to Earth, there are a few things you need to know. . .
      We live in all kinds of places.
      In all kinds of homes.
      In all kinds of families.
      Each of us is different. But all of us are amazing.<
      And, together, we share one beautiful planet.

      What’s the Matter, Marlo?

      by Andrew Arnold

      Nov 2020

      Character Building Elementary

      Marlo and Coco are best friends. They do everything together—they read together, laugh together, and play games together. After all, they’re best friends. And that’s what best friends do.

      But one day, when Coco asks Marlo to play, he doesn’t answer. Instead, Marlo turns away ignoring Coco until he’s lost in his anger. Coco is worried about her friend, but then she remembers she can always find Marlo.

      In this charming, thoughtful picture book, author-illustrator Andrew Arnold explores empathy and sadness and how friends can help each other navigate big emotions. Because that’s what best friends do.

      Marie's Ocean : Marie Tharp Maps the Mountains Under the Sea

      by Josie James

      Nov 2020

      Biography Elementary Plus

      A mixed-format picture book biography of STEM pioneer Marie Tharp, the woman who mapped the ocean floor. Born in 1925, Marie Tharp came of age at a time when academic careers were largely unavailable to women. She earned her degree in geology in the 1940s, at which point women accounted for a small percentage of all Earth science degrees. Marie’s vision and tenacity paved the way for her to make one of the most impactful discoveries of the 20th century: She created the first scientific chart of the Atlantic Ocean floor—a 40,000-mile-long map that confirmed the theories of plate tectonics and continental drift.

      From Tharp’s early childhood dreams all the way to her defining achievement, this is the story of one of Earth science’s greatest hidden figures. For fans of Counting on Katherine and Spring After Spring.

      Just a Story

      by Jeff Mack

      Nov 2020

      Pre-Kindergarten Plus

      Reading is wild, dangerous…fantastic! The possibilities are endless, the perils enormous—good thing it’s just a story.

      A boy happens upon a discarded book that transforms a library into an escalating series of near misses and close encounters with dastardly pirates, a herd of scooter-riding elephants, a big blue whale, and is that an alien in an Elvis wig?

      But surprise, he escapes without a scratch, because it’s just a story…

      With an exuberant art style reminiscent of newspaper comic strips, illustrator Jeff Mack brings imagination to life in this riotous tale about the power of reading.

      Field Trip to the Ocean Deep

      by John Hare

      Nov 2020


      Come join the fun as students take a submarine bus on a field trip to explore the ocean deep.

      Students dressed in deep sea helmets travel to the ocean deep in a yellow school-bus submarine. When they get there, they frolic with fish, luminescent squid, and discover an old shipwreck. But when it’s time to return to the submarine bus, one student lingers to take a photo of a treasure chest and falls into a deep ravine. Luckily, the child is entertained by a Plesiosaur—an extinct sea creature—until being retrieved by the teacher.

      In his follow-up to Field Trip to the Moon, John Hare’s rich, atmospheric art in this wordless picture book invites all children to imagine themselves in the story - A story full of mysteries, surprises, and adorable aquatic friends.

      Your Place in the Universe

      by Jason Chin

      Nov 2020

      Nonfiction Early Elementary

      Most eight-year-olds are about five times as tall as this book…but only half as tall as an ostrich, which is half as tall as a giraffe…twenty times smaller than a California Redwood! How do they compare to the tallest buildings? To Mt. Everest? To stars, galaxy clusters, and…the universe?

      Jason Chin, the award-winning author and illustrator of Grand Canyon has once again found a way to make a complex subject—size, scale and almost unimaginable distance—accessible and understandable to readers of all ages. Meticulously researched and featuring the highly detailed artwork for which he is renowned, this is How Much is a Million for the new millenium, sure to be an immediate hit with kids looking for an engaging way to delve into perspective, astronomy, and astrophysics. Curious readers will love the extensive supplementary material included in the back of the back of the book

      Girl Versus Squirrel

      by Hayley Barrett

      Nov 2020

      Primary Plus

      One resourceful girl. One determined squirrel. Great minds meet their match in this tale of persistence and learning that compromise can be a wonderful thing.

      Pearl has built three bird feeders—one looks like a house, one looks like a tube, and one looks like a teacup because it is a teacup. After she fills the bird feeders she sits back to enjoy the show—until a squirrel scares the birds away and gobbles up all the peanuts in the teacup.

      This will never do, and Pearl declares that girl versus squirrel is on.

      She raises the teacup higher and higher and finally builds an obstacle course to deter the squirrel. Does she succeed? Of course not—but Pearl learns that sometimes it is best—and can even be fun—to find a way to compromise.
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