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Mighty Miss Malone

Christopher Paul Curtis (2012), 307 pages
Audience: 5th Grade - 8th Grade
Category: Fiction, Historical, Realistic Fiction
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In the 1930's, the world was in a serious depression. It was a time when jobs were nearly impossible to obtain and families were often split when the man had to leave to find work. Christopher Paul Curtis uses the Malone family to paint a picture of the hardships so many families had during this time. Deza and her brother Jimmie are very close and are continually reminded that family is very important. Jimmie has a wonderful singing voice and finally uses it to accomplish 'family.' There are many diverse emotions, but humor and wit are also included in the funny and suspenseful story. An exceptional example of existence is provided in this realistic historical fiction novel. Boxing was a common conversation starter in the '30's when there was no television and the Joe Louis vs. Max Schmeling fight plays a role in the story. Reading the background of this fight in the 'Afterword' will enlighten the reader's understanding of this fight.
Similar books: Bud, not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis
Reviewed by: cjones
Date read: 2/27/2012
ISBN-13: 9780385904872
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Millicent Min, Girl Genius

Lisa Yee (2003), 256 pages
Audience: 4th Grade - 7th Grade
Category: Fiction, Humor, Realistic Fiction
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Millicent has all the normal problems that go with being eleven: she has trouble making friends; she is forced to tutor a boy she doesn't like; and her parents are embarrassing! In fact, the only thing that makes Millicent other than normal is the fact that she is a genius. At two years of age, she visited Jay Leno and rattled off the names of U.S. presidents, in order of years of service, and in alphabetical order. She is probably the only eleven-year-old girl about to graduate high school. Being a genius stands in the way of making friends, but not always in the way Millicent thinks it does. When she meets Emily, Millicent decides not to tell Emily that she is a genius. Their budding friendship is threatened, however, by the fact that Emily is attracted to Stanford, the boy Millicent is tutoring. The feeling is mutual, and Stanford makes Millicent swear that she won't tell Emily that Milli is tutoring him, which leads to Emily's embarrassing conclusion that Stanford is tutoring Milli. Will Millicent have the courage to tell Emily the truth, before it is too late?
Similar books: Ever After, a Novel by Rachel Vail; Tangerine by Eric Bloor
Reviewed by: sc
Date read: 6/1/2009
ISBN-10: 0439425190
ISBN-13: 9780439425193
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Miracle on 49th Street

Mike Lupica (2006), 256 pages
Audience: 6th Grade - 8th Grade
Category: Fiction, Realistic Fiction, Sports
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Molly Parker has a big secret: she is the daughter of one of the biggest sports stars of the moment, Josh Cameron of the Boston Celtics. Now that Molly's mother is gone, Molly is determined to get to know her dad, even if it takes some powerful scheming to sidestep the media and fans flocking around Josh. There is just one problem: Molly's mom also told her that Josh couldn't truly love anyone but himself. Will Molly regret defying her mother's wishes? Can Josh learn to love a daughter he never knew existed?
Reviewed by: emc
Date read: 8/26/2010
ISBN-10: 0399244883
ISBN-13: 9780399244889

Misfits

James Howe (2001), 288 pages
Audience: 6th Grade - 8th Grade
Category: Fiction, Realistic Fiction
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Bobby and his friends have never fit in with anyone except each other. They all have quirks that have made them outsiders, the targets of cruel name-calling, but they have one another. They get together weekly to discuss important issues over ice cream. When outspoken Addie gets the idea in her head that they should create a third party to run against the Democrat and Republican parties for student council, Bobby has a brilliant idea. They could create a No-Name Party against name-calling, which all of them have endured over the years. Their first round of posters starts everyone talking. Could these outsiders possibly win a student election?
Reviewed by: emc
Date read: 5/14/2010
ISBN-10: 0689839553
ISBN-13: 9780689839559
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Miss Brooks Loves Books (And I Don't)

Barbara Bottner (2010), 32 pages
Illustrated by Michael Emberley
Audience: Preschool - 2nd Grade
Category: Fiction, Picture Books, Realistic Fiction
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This first-grader avoids books whenever possible. She doesn't understand her school librarian, who loves books so much that she dresses in costumes to read them. Then, to the girl's horror, she is asked to share a book she loves with her class for Book Week. She asks her mom if they can leave town, but her mom says, 'There's a librarian in every town.' Will she find a book she can tolerate? Could a book ever be gross enough for her to love?
Reviewed by: emc
Date read: 7/30/2010
ISBN-10: 0375946829
ISBN-13: 9780375946820
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