January 2017



Preschoolers
Great Books from 2016

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ABERDEEN
written/illus. by Stacey Previn, (Viking Children's Books, 2016), 40p, Ages 2-5

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1 BIG SALAD
written/illus. by Juana Medina, (Viking Children's Books, 2016), 32p, Ages 3-6

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RRRALPH
written/illus. by Lois Ehlert, (Little Simon, 2016 Board), 36p, Ages 2-5



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Ages 4-8
Great Books from 2016

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THE STORY BOOK KNIGHT
written by Helen Docherty, illus. by Thomas Doherty, (Sourcebooks Jabberwocky, 2016), 32p, Ages 4-8

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THE TYPEWRITER
written/illus. by Bill Thomson, (Two Lions, Mar. 2016), 40p, Ages 4-7

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COWPOKE CLYDE RIDES THE RANGE
written by Lori Mortensen, illus. by Michael Allen Austin, (Clarion Books, 2016), 32p, Ages 4-8





Ages 8-12
Great Books from 2016
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BEETLE BOY
written by M. G. Leonard, (Chicken House, 2016), 288p, Ages 9-12

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GOOSEBERRY PARK AND THE MASTER PLAN
written by Cynthia Rylant, illus. by Arthur Howard, (Beach Lane Books, 2016), 128p,Ages 8-12

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HOW TO CAPTURE AN INVISIBLE CAT
written by Paul Tobin, illus. by Thierry Lafontaine, (Bloomsbury, 2016), 272p, Ages 9-12

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BASIL OF BAKER STREET
written by Eve Titus, illus. by Paul Galdone, (Aladdin Books, 1958/2016), 112p, Ages 7-9





Ages 10-14
Great Books from 2016
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THE IRON TOMB
written by Peter Vegas, illus. by Mohammad Aram, (Simon & Schuster Children's Books, 2016), 304p, Ages10-14





Ages 12-15
Great Books from 2016
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3 OF A KIND
(Knightley & Son) written by Rohan Gavin, (Bloomsbury, 2016), 272p, Ages 12-15

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VALKYRIE
written by Kate O'Hearn, (Aladdin Books, 2016), 352p, Ages 12-15





OLDER TEENS
Great Books from 2016
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RIDERS
written by Veronica Rossi, (Tor Teen, 2016), 368p, Ages 17+

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THE FIXER
written by Jennifer Lynn Barnes, (Bloomsbury, $17.99, 2016), 384p, Ages 16+

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THE FORBIDDEN WISH
written by Jennifer Lynn Barnes, (Razor Bill, 2016), 352p, Ages 16+



 






For more information on great children's literature for reading to children and by children, visit us at:

www.tchliteracy.com

Bringing you
books that:


Touch the Heart,
Color the Imagination, and
Delight the Mind


Welcome to The Storytellers, a monthly newsletter of outstanding children's literature to read and read aloud from preschoolers to teens.

The great storytellers in children's literature never lost their love of childhood. Their distinctive styles and personalities are woven into their writing in a special way that enchants children of every generation. We hope you will enjoy our choices reading and reading aloud stories for January.

For more information on reading to children, great books to read and read aloud, and a summer reading program, log on to our web site at www.tchliteracy.com.


Preschool
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BEARS IN THE SNOW
written by Shirley Parenteau, illus. by David Walker, (Candlewick Press, $15.99, Oct. 2016, ISBN 978-0-7636-8148-7), 32p, Ages 2-5

Fuzzy, Floppy, Yellow, and Calico, who have conquered chairs, beds, music, and bathtime, now tackle the problem of riding a small sled with not enough room for four bears. Waiting for a turn is difficult, so Big Brown Bear flops down, and they all ride down on top of him. "They shriek with joy. / That hill is steep. / They land at the bottom / in a laughing heap." At the end of the day, they all settle down and share hot chocolate for a happy ending to a fun snowy day.

 
Adventure for Preschoolers
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TOYS MEET SNOW:
Being the Wintertime Adventures of a Curious Stuffed Buffalo, a Sensitive Plush Stingray, and a Book-loving Rubber Ball

written by Emily Jenkins, illus. by Paul O. Zelinskky, , (Schwartz & Wade, $17.99, Sept. 2015, ISBN 978-0-385-37330-2) , 40p, Ages 2-6

With their owner away on winter vacation, a trio of adorable toys contemplate the snow falling outside their window. Curious Lumpy asks, "Why does it decide to snow?" Romantic Stingray replies, "Because the clouds are sad and happy at the same time." Practical Plastic explains, "No, it's what rain becomes when the temperature is freezing. I read it in a book." Deciding to venture outdoors, (dry clean only Stingray slides into a baggie), they work together to open the front door, and proceed to build a snowman and make snow angels. With different outlooks and perspectives, they watch a strawberry-syrup sunset and return to the house after a remarkable and exciting day with snow. This sweet and gentle story is a must read aloud for every child.

 
Ages 4-8
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A WHALE IN THE BATHTUB
written by Kylie Westaway, illus. by Tom Jellett, (Clarion Books, $16.99, June 2016, ISBN 978-0-544-53535-0), 40p, Ages 4-7

It seems that there is a very rude whale in Bruno's bathtub and refuses to let him take a bath. "You could have knocked!" he replies, when Bruno walks in. His family believes that Bruno is making it up and it's physically impossible for a whale to fit in a bathtub anyway. What's a boy to do when a huge, tub-hogging, bubble-bath-squirting whale refuses to budge? The whale solves Bruno's bath problem with a good blowhole shower. When Bruno's sister goes into the bathroom, she finds both the whale and a whale-size mess. Full of humor and nonsense, kids will love the silliness and the endpapers decorated with krill.

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FRITZ AND THE BEAUTIFUL HORSES
written/illus. by Jan Brett, (G. P. Putnam's Sons, $17.99, 1981/2016, ISBN 978-0-399-17458-2), 32p, Ages 4-7

Although Fritz was a kind and gentle pony, he was not beautiful like the magnificent horses that lived within the walled city. "He had a long, tangled mane, whiskers on his muzzle, and short legs. He was sure-footed and always willing to work." One day the citizens of the city were returning home in their fine carriages, when a bridge broke leaving the adults on one side and their children on the other side. When Fritz rescues the children by carrying them to safety, he becomes an instant hero and earns a place in the walled city. As always, Jan Brett's illustrations are beautiful.

 
Adventures for Ages 4-8
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THE LIGHTHOUSE FAMILY: The Storm
written by Cynthia Rylant, illus. by Preston McDaniels, (Simon & Schuster, 2002/2015), 80p, Ages 7-10

A lonely feline lighthouse keeper and a sea-loving dog rescue and make a home for three orphan mice in this first in a series of sweet books about love, kindness, and families. Pandora is lonely and a little weary as keeper of the lighthouse, but her life radically changes when a storm blows in a shipwrecked, crusty old sheepdog, Seabold. Over the next few months as he heals from injuries, they become good friends, and Seabold decides to stay. When he rescues three orphan mice, Whistler, Lila, and Tiny, Pandora nurses them back to health and both decide that their family is complete. "It happened because a noble young cat wished to save lives. Because a brave dog wished to sail. And because three small children wished for a family."

 
Ages 8-12
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INTO THE LION'S DEN
written by Linda Fairstein, (Dial Books, $16.99, Nov. 2916, ISBN 978-0-3991-8643-1 320p, Ages 9-12

With the New York Police Commissioner as her mother, 12-year-old Delvin Quick has a definite advantage in sleuthing. When rare maps from the New York Public Library are stolen, Devlin enlists the help of her mom, friends Liza and Booker, and police detectives in an effort to solve the case. With a love for reading, Devlin knows that defacing a book is horrible, but with no grown-up witnesses, she uses unorthodox means to gain information, following a trail from the 42nd Street Library lions to Brooklyn Public Library's Central Building. When captured by the thief, Devlin and Lisa find themselves trapped in the basement of the library and must escape through an abandoned subway station to seek help. First in a new series, this well-crafted detective tale features many famous landmarks, historical and geographical facts, and a wide variety of concepts and techniques and concepts used in forensic work.

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THE SECRETS OF HEXBRIDGE CASTLE
written by Gabrielle Kent, (Scholastic Press, Nov. 2016, ISBN 978-0-545-86929-4). 336p, Ages 9-12

Alfie Bloom's dreadful summer radically changes, when he receives a letter informing him that he has inherited Hexbridge Castle from an ancient druid, Orin Hopcraft. Upon his 12th birthday, not only does he inherit a castle, but Hopcraft's magic is passed to him. When Alfie and his inventor father move in, Alfie discovers a mysterious butler, a talking and flying bearskin rug named Artan, two nearby cousins, enchanted walls that hold magical secrets, and a hidden mystery under the castle that is under Alfie's protection. His inheritance includes guarding powerful magic, traveling through time, and battling a dangerous dragon, as well as two evil headmistresses of his new school, who try to sneak in the castle and steal the magic. With support from family, friends, Artan, and a shape-shifting crow, Alfie soon realizes how power can be used for evil or good. With themes of loyalty and doing the right thing, this fantasy/adventure will have kids eagerly awaiting the next installment.

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THE FOUR-FINGERED MAN
written by Cerberus Jones, (Kane Miller, Oct 2016, $5.99, ISBN 978-1-61067-498-0), 160p, Ages 9-12

To Amelia and her brother, James, the Gateway Hotel in Forgotten Bay is rundown, creepy, and the caretaker with eye patch and missing finger is just plain freaky. "The hotel must have once been beautiful, but now it was a mass of peeling paint, cracked windowpanes, spiderwebs and abandoned wasps' nests." When their parents decide to renovate it and live there, they miss their friends and apartment back in the city, but along with a local boy, Charlie, Amelia discovers many mysteries surrounding the hotel that need investigating. Who is Lady Naomi? Why is there a small metal door behind a painting of the original owner, Matilda Swervingthorpe, who mysteriously disappeared? Why is a guest carrying a bag full of jewels and has a tank full of centipedes? Why are the parents hiding something? As mysteries begin to unravel, Amelia and Charlie discover that the Gateway Hotel is no ordinary hotel. It guests are coming from other planets. To be continued…



Adventure for Ages 8-12
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THE FANTASTIC SECRET OF OWEN JESTER
written by Barbara O'Conner, (Farrar, Straus, Giroux, $15.99, 2010, ISBN 978-0-374-36850-0), 176p, Ages 9-12

When Owen Jester and his family move across town to live with his grandfather, Owen's days are filled with mischief and avoiding Earlene, the grumpy, no-nonsense housekeeper. Having caught the biggest bullfrog in Carter, Georgia, Owen can't resist slipping Tooley Graham into Earlene's soup. "It swam gracefully under the potatoes, pushing its froggy legs through the pale yellow broth." Owen refuses to believe that Tooley is unhappy in his cage, as nosy neighbor, Viola, constantly points out.
One summer night Owen's life radically changes after hearing an object fall from a passing train. For days he and two friends, Travis and Stumpy, search for it and discover a two-person submarine, the Water Wonder 4000. As they scheme to keep the sub secret from the authorities, they are unsuccessful in concealing it from know-it-all Viola. When she threatens to tell the authorities, the boys are forced to include her in their adventure. Viola proves useful when she interprets the instructional booklet and devises a way to move the sub to a nearby pond. There they have the time of their lives under water, until the authorities find them. This summertime adventure of friendship, family, enemies, and bullfrogs begs to be read all year around.

Adventure for Ages 10-14
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FLIGHT OF THE SILVER TURTLE
written/illus. by John Fardell, (G. P. Putnam's Sons, 2006), 212p, Ages 10-12

The kids from The 7 Professors of the Far North look forward to a summer helping to build an experimental airplane in an old World War II hanger along the coast of Scotland. Little do they realize that their summer will be filled with danger, mystery, and suspense that involves learning to fly airplanes, scuba diving, breaking secret codes, and searching for an antigravity machine created in the 1940s. The kids and professors join an aging, eccentric inventor to defeat Noctarna, an international criminal organization intent on locating the antigravity machine, in order to rule the world. Wacky adventures, energetic characters, and fascinating inventions make this book a fun read for children and adults.

Ages 12-15
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THE RUBY MOON
written by Trisha White Priebe/Jerry B. Jenkins, (Shiloh Run Press, $14.99, ISBN 978-1-63409-903-5), 240p, Ages 13+

This second book in the Thirteen series finds Avery and the other kidnapped thirteen-year-olds anxiously awaiting and training for the King's Olympiad, and Avery is determined to compete. Among all the preparations for the tournament, many of the kids begin to disappear from their hiding place in the castle, and the council decides to relocate them into the dangerous tunnels underneath the castle. Upon receiving carrier pigeon messages about her lost family and receiving her brother's paper boat, Amy decides to investigate and discovers an underground movement against the King. Frustrated by many unsolved problems, Avery is determined to prove that Queen Angelina is poisoning the King, locate her missing family, and find a way to speak to the king about his unknown son, her friend thirteen-year-old Kendrick. Adventure, danger, intrigue, and unanswered questions will have readers eagerly awaiting the third book, The Paper Boat.

Adventure for Ages 12-15
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URBAN OUTLAWS
written by Peter Jay Black, (Bloomsbury, $16.99, Oct. 2014, ISBN 978-1-61963-400-8), 288p, Ages 10-13

Beneath London streets live five orphan kids, who are dedicated to outsmarting criminals, stealing from the rich, sending secret donations to nonprofits, and performing Random Acts of Kindness (RAKing). With a huge sense of justice, they are the Urban Outlaws—hacker Jack, gadget-crazed Charlie, free runner Slink, communications guru Obi, and decoy whiz Wren. Upon discovering the location of the world's only quantum computer, capable of stealing the world's top secrets, they realize the enormity of their latest quest to destroy it. With the government and ruthless criminals in pursuit, the heroes use high tech gadgets, cunning imagination, guts, and skill to elude danger on their way to saving the world. Kids who love explosive action, cool technology, and characters with a sense of family, justice, and responsibility will love this debut series.

Older Teens
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THE IMMORTAL THRONE
written by Bree Despain, (Carolrhoda Lab, $18.99, Oct. 2016, ISBN 978-1-5124-0583-5), 344p, Ages 16+

This final book of the Into the Dark series finds 17-year-old Daphne Raines in the Underworld betrothed to Haden's conniving half-brother, Garrick, who has managed to become king. The love of her life, Haden, has been banished to the mortal realm, as poison slowly takes over his body. Her kiss can save him, but she needs to escape her prison room, find the lost Key of Hades that unlocks the gates of the Underworld, rescue the innocent people held in Hades' Castle, and return to the mortal realm to help Haden fight the evil Keres with her musical talent. Haden must unite the Skylords to prevent the extinction of the realms and stay alive long enough to help defeat the Keres. Underlords, Skylords, Keres, Shades (and one special Shady), battle scenes, dramatic rescues, humorous antidotes, magical powers, and sacrificial love, all combine to create a spectacular and surprise ending to a magical series that many readers will wish could continue.

Adventure for Older Teens
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TWO LIES AND A SPY
written by Kat Carlton, (Simon & Schuster, $16.99, Sept. 2013, ISBN 978-1-9424-8172-5), 256p, Ages 16+

"Can u pick up milk on ur way home?" For sixteen-year-old Kari Andrews, junior at Kennedy Preparatory School in Washington, DC, this is an emergency text—a Code Black warning from her father. Shedding her school uniform for a Goth disguise and picking up her seven-year-old brother, Kari enlists the help of a few friends (makeup artist, computer whiz, and judo expert) to locate her missing parents, declared double agents working for the Russians. Escaping Agency thugs, breaking into CIA headquarters to rescue her mother, discerning friends from enemies, and trying to impress a longtime crush, Kari is determined to exonerate her parents from all false charges. But, are they false? Engaging characters, plot twists and a surprise ending make for a wild and fun teenage ride through espionage.

Over the years, we have researched thousands of children's books, and can recommend some of the best in outstanding children's literature for parents to read aloud and children to read. Our recommendations must meet certain criteria: fun, creative and imaginative stories, delightful illustrations, and excellent for age appropriate listening and reading. We hope that you enjoyed our recommendations. If you desire further information some of the best in children's literature, please visit our website, www.tchliteracy.com.

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