Revenge of the Flower Girls & Revenge of the Angels

Revenge of the Flower GirlsRevenge of the Flower Girls
by Jennifer Ziegler
Grades 4 & up

Dawn, Darby, and Delany do not want their older sister Lily to marry Burton. For one thing, he looks like an armadillo. For another, he doesn’t make their sister happy like her old boyfriend Alex used to. The triplets feel that Lily is making a huge mistake, and take it upon themselves to stop the wedding. Told in their three alternating voices (which don’t really seem that different), this rollicking romp through a month of wedding planning and disasters will have readers laughing out loud. Recommended for grades 4-7.

Revenge of the AngelsRevenge of the Angels
by Jennifer Ziegler
Grades 3 & up

In this sequel to Revenge of the Flower Girls, Dawn, Darby, and Delaney are really disappointed with the way Christmas is turning out. First, they were cast as angels instead of the Three Wise Men (Wise People?) like they had hoped for. Then their older sister is off to look at library schools with their mom for the days leading up to Christmas. Finally, someone is stealing Christmas decorations in the neighborhood. Putting their three brains together, they hope to solve all of these problems and save Christmas before it is too late. Told in alternating voices of each of the triplets like the first book. Recommended for grades 3 & up.

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Spell Robbers

Spell Robbers (The Quantum League, #1)Spell Robbers
by Matthew J. Kirby
Grades 4 & up

Ben has once again moved to a new town and a new school as his mother tries to reinvent her life. This time though, he is asked to join a quantum physics club, but it is nothing like any science club he has ever seen. Instead, they use the concepts of quantum mechanics to “actualize” — use the power of their own imaginations to create a different reality. When a group of bad guys using the same powers attack the club, Ben quickly finds himself drawn into a battle for power, and must decide whether to use actualization for good or for evil. A great new adventure series for grades 4-8.

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Eliza Bing Is (Not) a Big, Fat Quitter

Eliza Bing Is (Not) a Big, Fat QuitterEliza Bing Is (Not) a Big, Fat Quitter
by Carmella Van Vleet
Grades 3 & up

More than anything, Eliza wants to be a cake decorator like her idol, Sweet Caroline. She is finally taking meds for ADHD and working hard at being socially appropriate. When her parents tell her that the summer class in cake decorating is too expensive, she is devastated. When she overhears them talking about how she has quit everything that she has tried, Eliza comes up with a plan. If she finishes her brother’s Tae Kwan Do classes, they will let her take the cake decorating class in the Fall. Eliza is determined to stick with the Tae Kwan Do to get to the cake decorating. Along the way, she learns quite a bit about herself and her abilities. Although at times this felt like a sequel to an earlier book, it is not. Recommended for grades 3 & up.

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The Great Wall of Lucy Wu

The Great Wall of Lucy WuThe Great Wall of Lucy Wu
by Wendy Wan-Long Shang
Grades 4 & up

Lucy is sure that sixth grade is going to be the best year ever! She’ll be in the oldest grade in the school, her sister is going to college so she’ll finally have her own room, and she and her best friend Madison will be amazing on their club basketball team. What she didn’t count on was her long lost great-aunt from China coming for an extended visit or a new Chinese school that conflicts with basketball. Worst of all, she catches the attention of the mean girl at school. Is there any way to save this school year from being an absolute disaster? Highly recommended for grades 4 & up.

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The Spy Catchers of Maple Hill

The Spy Catchers of Maple HillThe Spy Catchers of Maple Hill
by Megan Frazer Blakemore
Grades 4 & up

It is the height of the Cold War and McCarthyism, and even the small town of Maple Hill, Vermont has its suspected Communist spies. Hazel Kaplansky’s parents run the local cemetery. Her best friend has just moved away, and she has never felt more alone. When Samuel Butler moves to town, Hazel enlists him in solving the mystery of finding who Paul Jones, the new cemetery handyman, is really. Hazel is sure that he must be a spy. As she sets out to solve this mystery, she learns more about her family and her town than she had ever expected. Recommended for grades 4 & up.

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Creature Keepers and the Hijacked Hydro-Hide & Creature Keepers and the Swindled Soil-Soles

Creature Keepers and the Hijacked Hydro-HideCreature Keepers and the Hijacked Hydro-Hide
by Peter Nelson
Grades 3 & up

Jordan Grimsley couldn’t be less excited about traveling to some remote town in the Florida Everglades to see an old house that his grandfather left them. He is definitely not looking forward¬†to spending his spring break doing renovations. His grandfather had a reputation of being a crazy cryptid hunter, and Jordan doesn’t want anything to do with him. Until, that is, he starts finding evidence that his grandfather wasn’t crazy and that there is a Florida Skunk Ape living right beside the old house. As Jordan begins to learn about the secret Creature Keeper society, he realizes that maybe coming down to Florida wasn’t such a bad thing after all. The first in a new series. Grades 3-7.

Creature Keepers and the Swindled Soil-SolesCreature Keepers and the Swindled Soil-Soles
by Peter Nelson
Grades 3 & up

In this second Creature Keepers book, Jordan and Abbie are off to the Pacific Northwest. Syd, the Sasquatch, is in danger of being discovered and as honorary Creature Keepers it is up to them to lend a hand. This is only the start of the danger, however, as old enemies from the first book return. I recommend reading the series in order. For grades 3 & up.

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The Dungeoneers

The Dungeoneers (Dungeoneers, #1)The Dungeoneers
by John David Anderson
Grades 4 & up

Colm is the only boy, stuck in the middle of eight sisters. He hates how hard his father, a cobbler, works and is still barely able to get by. Colm takes matters into his own hands one afternoon, picking pockets in the town square in an effort to redistribute some wealth. The ease and success which with he accomplishes this brings him to the attention of Finn Argos, a master rogue at a dungeoneering guild who recruits Colm to train at his school. Here Colm will learn the lockpicking and trap disarming skills necessary to become a true dungeoneer — an adventurer who steals gold from goblins, trolls, orcs, and other beings deep underground. He learns alongside the others that make up his party: Lena, who is a warrior barbarian; Quinn, a mageling who needs to get his fire shooting skills under control; and Serene, a Druid who can talk to most animals (except the big scary ones). Together their team must work through training and trials, as they prepare to test their skills in a real dungeon. An exciting book, highly recommended for grades 4 & up.

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Almost Super and Searching for Super

Almost SuperAlmost Super
by Marion Jensen
Grades 4 & up

Rafter and his younger brother Benny have been waiting years to receive their superpowers, just like all Baileys receive on the leap day after their twelfth birthday. But when they finally come, it is nothing but a huge disappointment. Unable to take their rightful part in their crime-fighting superfamily, Rafter and Benny set out to find answers. But first they must protect themselves from their middle school classmate, Juanita Johnson, part of the supervillianous Johnson family. It is while talking to Juanita, that they realize things are not always what they seem. Can the three of them join forces to protect the world from a greater evil? An excellent superhero adventure as well as a look at ingrained, baseless discrimination. Recommended for grades 4 & up.

Searching for SuperSearching for Super
by Marion Jensen
Grades 4 & up

In this hilarious and action-packed sequel to Almost Super, the two superhero families of the Baileys and the Johnsons have united to fight their common enemy, the Joneses. Unfortunately since they lost their powers in the first book, they are mostly hunkering down, which is super frustrating for Rafter and Benny. Juanita takes it in stride, doing what she can in the meantime. But when Rafter and Benny set out on their own to do something big, they unleash a chain of events that could destroy their superpowers — and their families — forever. Highly recommend to grades 4 and up. Must be read in order.

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The Junction of Sunshine and Lucky

The Junction of Sunshine and LuckyThe Junction of Sunshine and Lucky
by Holly Schindler
Grades 4 & up

Auggie has lived with her grandfather Gus in a poorer section of town since her mother ran off to California. He is a junk hauler — picking up larger pieces than the garbage trucks can and taking them to the junkyard. She is impressed with her neighbors and friends — Irma Jean who can sew amazing clothes out of hand-me downs, Harold who is super smart and grows his own vegetables, Lexie who comes up with the most amazing hairstyles. Auggie hopes that starting at a new school will help her find her “shine.” But at the new school she and her friends are looked down on as poor, and even worse, the “House Beautification Committee” has been threatening her and her neighbors with fines or worse if they don’t clean things up. Auggie has some great ideas about fixing things up, but unfortunately the committee doesn’t see things the same way. Auggie is willing to take on the whole town to prove that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and one person’s trash is another person’s treasure. An uplifting story. Recommended for grades 4-8.

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Wanderville and On Track for Treasure

WandervilleWanderville
by Wendy McClure
Grades 3 & up

Frances has been taking care of her younger brother Harold since their mother disappeared five years before. Jack is wracked with guilt when his older brother is killed in a fire that he survives. Due to a variety of circumstances, the three of them find themselves on the same Orphan Train heading to Kansas. Worried about all of the rumors they have been hearing about what waits for them at the end of the line, as well as Frances being concerned that she will be split up from Harold, the three kids jump from the train just before it reaches the final station. Although wandering on the prairie still seems like a better alternative, they are relieved when they meet Alexander, who takes them to his campsite named Wanderville. Together, the four of them set out to survive on their own, without getting caught by the sheriff. An exciting, though not necessarily realistic, look at the Orphan Trains and life on the prairie. The first in a new series. Recommended for grades 3-5.

On Track for TreasureOn Track for Treasure
by Wendy McClure
Grades 4 & up

In this second book in the Wanderville series, Jack, Frances, Harold, and Alexander are on the run from the original Wanderville. They hope to make it to California, but hop the wrong train. Instead, they end up with a wealthy preacher and his family. He offers to give them a home, but they must follow his rules. The children are unsure that they want to do that, especially when they witness some injustices that really disturb them. It is important to read the first book. There will clearly be a third as well. Recommended for grades 4-6.

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