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Born Too Short: The Confessions of an Eighth-Grade Basket Case

Dan Elish (2003), 156 pages
Audience: 6th Grade - 8th Grade
Category: Especially for Boys, Fiction, Realistic Fiction
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Matt and Keith have been best friends since they were six years old, and now that they're in eighth grade, nothing has changed. Nothing has changed, except for the fact that Keith shot up five inches taller than Matt, and all the girls are interested in Keith, a good-looking athlete who stars in advertising campaigns for toothpaste. Keith's still a great friend, and he doesn't treat Matt any differently, but Matt can't help but let it sting. How will Matt survive his eighth-grade year with a best friend who gets everything Matt wants?
Reviewed by: emc
Date read: 4/23/2010
ISBN-10: 068986213X
ISBN-13: 9780689862137
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Both Sides of Time

Caroline B. Cooney (1995), 210 pages
Audience: 6th Grade - 8th Grade
Category: Especially for Girls, Fiction, Time Travel
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Annie fantasizes about the nineteeth century. She loves the formality, fashion, old-fashioned romance and courtship-basically everything about this time period! So imagine her surprise and delight when Annie finds herself in the year 1895 after exploring an old mansion that is about to be torn down. Annie finds that she loves the simplicity of this time period but when she finds herself falling in love with a boy named Strat, everything becomes very complicated. Annie goes 'back to the future' when she is framed for a murder but her love for Strat soon draws her back to 1895. Read this book to peek into the lifestyle of the 19th century and to find out which side of time Annie ends up in. Other time travel books about Annie are Out of Time, Prisoner of Time and For All Time.
Reviewed by: jb
Date read: 10/1/2010
ISBN-10: 0440219329
ISBN-13: 9780440219323
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Bounce

Natasha Friend (2007), 188 pages
Illustrated by Kelly Murphy
Audience: 6th Grade - 8th Grade
Category: Fiction, Realistic Fiction
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Evyn's life is turned upside down when her widowed Dad announces 'Kids, I'm getting married ' and we're moving to Boston. These are not things 13 year old Evyn wants to hear. She thinks things are just fine the way they are even though she misses a mother she never knew who died when she was a baby. She must leave her hometown in Maine and her best friend for a completely different life. Her father who she always called 'Birdie' (short for Albert) is now Al and has a whole new look courtesy of his intended. Not to mention that his fiance has six children and now a baby on the way. Her older geek brother welcomes the chance to make a new life and becomes a stranger to her as well. Even her dog now has to sleep in a doghouse outside since one of her step sisters has an allergy to them. How will she cope with all these changes? In private, she has always conversed with her Mother, who has told her to 'bounce' with any change. But will this advice be enough for her to deal with all the changes in her life?
Awards nominated: 2013 Rebecca Caudill Nominee
Reviewed by: ewl
Date read: 5/20/2012
ISBN-13: 9780439853507
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Boxcar Children

Gertrude Chandler Warner (1942), 158 pages
Illustrated by L. Kate Deal
Audience: 2nd Grade - 4th Grade
Category: Adventure, Classic, Fiction, Mystery
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Four orphaned children discover an abandoned boxcar and decide to live there. Will they be able to survive on their own without any adults to help them? The children have several gentle adventures, then the book has a happy ending. If you enjoy this book, read the many others in the series. The first 19 were written by Gertrude Chandler Warner, and the later ones were written by other authors in Warner's style.
Reviewed by: msp
Date read: 1/6/2011
ISBN-10: 0807508519
ISBN-13: 9780807508510
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Reader Comments
3 out of 5 books3 out of 5 books3 out of 5 books3 out of 5 books3 out of 5 booksOrphans...lost...
Commenter: Alan, grade 2
This is a good book. It has children...alone...somewhere...
5 out of 5 books5 out of 5 books5 out of 5 books5 out of 5 books5 out of 5 booksAmazing!!!
Commenter: Alan, grade 5
Forget what I said in 2nd grade. This book is amazing!
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Boxes for Katje

Candace Fleming (2003), 40 pages
Illustrated by Stacey Dressen-McQueen
Audience: K - 3rd Grade
Category: Fiction, Historical, Picture Books
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As the winter after World War II ends, it is very cold in Katje's village in Holland. There are no new shoes, and there is no sugar or soap. One day, a box comes in the mail for Katje. Someone in America has sent Katje warm socks, a bar of soap, and some chocolate! Katje shares her wonderful box with her mother and the mailman and writes a thank you letter to America. Boxes continue to come across the ocean, and Katje shares them all with everyone in her village. How can Katje thank her American friend?
Reviewed by: sc
Date read: 7/6/2009
ISBN-10: 0374309221
ISBN-13: 9780374309220
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