Staff Picks

Mr. Pants: It's Go Time! by Scott McCormick

It’s the last day of summer, which means the last day of fun!  Mr. Pants has his heart set on playing laser tag but Grommy, his little sister, has chosen to go to the “Fairy Princess Dream Factory" (UGH!)  Mom has promised that if Mr. Pants doesn’t complain during Grommy’s fun time, then they can go play laser tag.  Foot Foot, Mr. Pants other sister, does not make it easy for him to be patient and get along with his siblings.  Go along with Mr. Pants and his cat family to see if he gets to play laser tag!

Marina by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

Fifteen year old Oscar Drai has a habit of sneaking out of his boarding school and exploring the city of Barcelona. During one of his excursions, he meets Marina and her eccentric father, Germán. Marina soon shows Oscar one of her favorite mysteries of the city: on the last Sunday each month, at exactly ten o’clock, a woman dressed all in black takes a carriage to a small graveyard and places a rose on an unmarked grave. Oscar and Marina decide to follow the woman and, in the process, make an odd and macabre discovery.

Knightly & Son by Rohan Gavin

Darkus Knightley’s dad has been in a coma for four years. During that time Darkus has kept himself busy dad by studying his detective dad’s case files at night.  Darkus is certain that there must be some clue to explain both his father’s current state, and the recent increase in crime.  Mr. Knightley suddenly wakes, which seems somehow related to the release of a book called The Code. He fears that the freaky things The Code makes readers do is the work of a shadowy evil group called The Combination.  Mr.

My Explosive Diary by Emily Gale

Eliza Boom (inventor-in-training) wants to be just like her dad and become a spy-gadget inventor. She won’t become an inventor or a spy if she can’t get her father’s top-secret film back from the class bully, Zoe Wakefield. Unfortunately Zoe is using the film as a hair bow. Eliza and her two assistants Einstein (her dog) and new friend Amy need to get it back before enemy spies can get their hands on it.Can these three would-be 007s get the film, stop the spies, and get revenge on the class bully?

The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion & the Fall of Imperial Russia by Candace Fleming

This is the story of the House of Romanov: Tsar Nicolas II of Russia, the wealthiest monarch in the world who ruled over 130 million people; his powerful wife; their friend Rasputin and his influence on them; and their five children. Included throughout are pictures and diary entries of the family, as well as those of the peasants who were just trying to survive.

In the Kingdom of Ice: The Grand and Terrible Polar Voyage of the USS Jeannette by Hampton Sides

On July 8, 1879, George Washington De Long led an expedition that set sail on the USS Jeannette headed for the North Pole. After journeying north of the Bering Strait, they became trapped in ice and the Jeannette sank to the bottom of the Arctic Ocean. Marooned with three open boats, the crew began a long fateful march across the frozen sea to the Siberian coast. A spellbinding tale of heroism and determination in the most unforgiving territory on Earth. 

910.452 SID

A Quilt for Christmas by Sandra Dallas

In 1864 Eliza Spooner’s husband Will volunteers to join the Union army leaving her to take care of their Kansas farm and their two children. Eliza awaits his return and sends him a special Christmas quilt to help keep him warm. When one of her neighbors becomes a widow, Eliza opens her home to the young woman and her daughter. The two women help each other and form a special bond when they join other women in a quilting group. When Eliza is asked to hide an escaped slave she finds it in her heart to do the right thing even though it puts her own family in danger.

Not That Kind of Girl by Siobhan Vivian

It's almost always the case that how much I like a book depends on how much I like the MC, and high school senior Natalie Sterling is pretty hard to like. But Siobhan Vivian made me care about Natalie, even when I didn't especially like her, and make me feel protective of her, too, even when she was dead set on a foolish course of action with a preordained bad end. Natalie likes to have everything under control, but when she becomes attracted to one of the senior boys and her best friend starts keeping secrets from her, things get messy.

Life on Mars by Jennifer Brown

Arty’s goal is to find life on Mars. On the roof outside his bedroom, using a homemade signaling device, Arty directs messages toward Mars and waits for a response.  One night he sees a man come out of the house next door, carrying a black garbage bag into the woods. Arty and his friends Tripp and Priya decide his neighbor is a face-eating zombie and call him Mr. Death. Arty is upset to learn his family is moving far from the Midwest. Plans get mixed up while his parents are in Las Vegas, looking for a new house, and Arty must spend the night at Mr. Death’s house.

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