GO, GO, GORILLAS
by JULIA DURANGO (Simon & Schuster, 2010)
Big Daddy, King of the Gorillas, sends out his messenger to call all of the gorilla family together. The messenger, a tiny mouse on a motorcycle, visits each of Big Daddy’s royal relatives with the summons to be there by sundown and don’t be late! Each gorilla responds in a lively rhyme and has his or her own special way of traveling to Big Daddy’s villa. When they all arrive, Big Daddy has a big party and a special surprise! This is a bouncy, rhyming book in which the child can help read the story by repeating the chant after each summons, “Go-go, gorillas! Gotta go, gorillas, go!” Bright illustrations of all the gorillas and their various modes of transportation just add to the fun.
2ND – 4TH
WORD AFTER WORD AFTER WORD
by PATRICIA MacLACHAN (Katherine Tegan Books, 2010)
When a guest, a famous writer, comes to their fourth grade classroom, Lucy, Henry, Evie, May, and Russell begin to see and write in a totally new way. Ms. Mirabel brings a magical way with words and challenges the students to write their own stories, word after word after word. Each of the kids gives it a try and it is an easier task for some than others. They write about the things that are happening in their lives, some good, some not so good. They write about what they feel about those things. They write about what they will do and what they dream. If you would like to be a writer someday or just like to write for fun, this story could be a good source of inspiration.
JASPER DASH & THE FLAME-PIS OF DELAWARE
by M. T. ANDERSON (Beach Lane Books, 2009)
Did you know that Delaware is a jungle, full of palaces, towers, and secret monasteries brimming with ancient treasures? No? Well, this is the Delaware that time forgot or rather chose specifically not to remember. Jasper Dash: Boy Technonaut, and his friends Lily and Katie are off on an adventure into the wilds of Delaware to search for the monastery of Vbngoom (the use of too many vowels is against the law in Delaware). Jasper, a stare-eyes competitive champion, just knows that his friend, Drgnan Pghlik, is in mortal danger at the monastery and needs Jasper’s help. Trekking through the jungles to find the mountain the monastery is on (it moves so this is not an easy task), Jasper, Lily and Katie struggle to reach it in time to rescue his friend. Will they make it? Will they be eaten by the mountain squids? Will the evil stare-eyes team loot the monastery before they can stop them? Tune in next week for the exciting con….no, no, no. Just read the book to find out. P.S. More exciting adventures to follow!
GREEN ANGEL & GREEN WITCH
by ALICE HOFFMAN (Scholastic Press, 2009)
Two halves of a broken heart mending together; that is how these two stories are crafted. One completes the other. A sudden, totally unexpected tragic fire occurs in a nearby city delivering devastation to the survivors and their environment. The first tale thrusts the heroin, Green, into a downward spiral having lost her whole family and left home alone with her sister’s dog. As the tale unfolds we watch her slowly find herself as she reaches out to help others also caught in the aftermath of this tragedy. The second tale weaves a new sense of hopefulness and trust as she begins to pull the pieces of her lost life together. A sense of disconnectedness gives way to wholeness as she interviews and records the stories from other survivors. The author’s poetic rhythm draws the reader through the feelings of despair giving way to feelings of new life. Green’s courage, resourcefulness and kindheartedness are the characteristics that show the reader the way to survive and thrive.