Braille Book Review

November-December 2005

Books for Children


Hitty: Her First Hundred Years BR 15452
by Rachel Field
2 volumes
Hitty, no ordinary doll, was carved from a block of wood for Phoebe, a little girl who took her toy everywhere. Hitty, now securely perched in a window of an antiques shop, recalls her adventuresome life on land and sea. For grades 4-7 and older readers. Newbery Medal. 1929.

Ginger Pye BR 15556
by Eleanor Estes
2 volumes
Ten-year-old Jerry Pye and his younger sister Rachel get a new puppy and name him Ginger. When Ginger disappears, the adventurous children set out to find him. They suspect the little dog has been spirited away by a mysterious stranger wearing a yellow hat. For grades 3-6. Newbery Medal. 1951.

Storm Catchers BR 15558
by Tim Bowler
2 volumes
Cornwall, England. Thirteen-year-old Ella is kidnapped and held in a cave after her older brother Fin leaves her and their three- year-old brother home alone. As his parents deal with the kidnapper's demands, Fin begins his own investigation and uncovers a deadly family secret. For grades 6-9. 2001.

The People of Sparks BR 15562
by Jeanne DuPrau
2 volumes
Lina and Doon from The City of Ember (BR 15120) help relocate fellow underground Ember inhabitants to the surface town of Sparks. At first residents of Sparks and Ember share food and shelter. But when resources become scarce, the two groups begin to fight. For grades 5-8. 2004.

The Hero and the Crown BR 15580
by Robin McKinley
2 volumes
With a wizard's guidance and the blue sword's help, young Aerin fights to claim her birthright as daughter of a king and a witch from the mysterious, demon-haunted north. For grades 6-9 and older readers. Newbery Medal. 1984.

The Blue Sword BR 15581
by Robin McKinley
3 volumes
Harry lives a boring, sheltered life in remote Daria until she is kidnapped by a mysterious king and discovers her destiny to carry the magical, legendary blue sword. Sequel to The Hero and the Crown (BR 15580). For grades 6-9 and older readers. Newbery Honor Book. 1982.

Hurricane: Open Seas, 1844 BR 15585
by K. Duey and K.A. Bale
1 volume
Thirteen-year-old Rebecca and her family sail for four years on the high seas with their father, the captain of a whaling ship. John Lowe is also on board working off a family debt. Together John and Rebecca survive a whale hunt and a hurricane. For grades 5-8. 1999.

Uncommon Faith BR 15595
by Trudy Krisher
2 volumes
Millbrook, Massachusetts; 1837. Townspeople lament the tragic fire that killed and injured many residents. Meanwhile fourteen- year-old minister's daughter Faith Common, outspoken in her views of abolition and women's rights, provokes reactions of either outrage or admiration. For grades 6-9 and older readers. 2003.

Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm BR 15630
by Kate Douglas Wiggin
2 volumes
High-spirited Rebecca leaves her widowed mother and six siblings at Sunnybrook Farm to live with her two spinster aunts in Riverboro. She brings zest and grace into their gloomy home and dull lives. For grades 3-6. 1903.

God Went to Beauty School BR 15645
by Cynthia Rylant
1 volume
Lighthearted but thought-provoking poems depicting God's exploration of the wonders and pains in the world He created. Curious about everyday human activity, God gets a dog, goes to the doctor, sees a movie, finds a job, takes a bath, and even experiences death. For grades 6-9 and older readers. 2003.

Messenger BR 15675
by Lois Lowry
1 volume
Teenage Matty lives with blind Seer in Village, the utopia from Giver (BR 9626) and Gathering Blue (BR 15631). When the changing community wants to close itself to outsiders, Matty journeys through hostile forests to save Village's founding principles. For grades 5-8 and older readers. 2004.

The Tears of the Salamander BR 15676
by Peter Dickinson
2 volumes
Italy, 1700s. Twelve-year-old choirboy Alfredo loses his family in a fire and goes to live with his uncle Giorgio. He discovers that his uncle controls the fires of Mt. Etna in Sicily, is a sorcerer, and has sinister plans for Alfredo. For grades 6-9. 2003.

Betrayal at Cross Creek: American Girl History Mysteries BR 15678
by Kathleen Ernst
1 volume
North Carolina, 1775. Twelve-year-old Elspeth and her grandparents, Scottish refugees, feel torn between the warring English loyalists and the colonists. After a cousin is killed and her grandfather is arrested, Elspeth must unmask the spy in the family. For grades 4-7. 2004.

The Cricket in Times Square BR 15680
by George Selden
1 volume
Lost in New York City, musical country cricket Chester befriends a cat, a streetwise mouse, and young Mario, whose father owns a newsstand in the Times Square subway station. While dreaming of home Chester turns the stand into a concert hall to help the family business. For grades 3-6. Newbery Honor Book. 1960.

Dog Days BR 15686
by David Lubar
1 volume
Larry's summer goals include playing baseball and caring for his collection of stray dogs. These plans change when his younger brother, Paul, is frightened by an alley dog and the cost of pet food goes up. By helping Paul, Larry solves his own problems. For grades 3-6. 2004.

How I Found the Strong: A Civil War Story BR 15690
by Margaret McMullan
1 volume
Ten-year-old Frank Russell wishes he could join his father and older brother and fight with the Confederate Army. But hardships at home test his courage plenty and change his thinking about warfare and slavery. Some violence and some strong language. For grades 5-8 and older readers. 2004.

Jess and the Stinky Cowboys BR 15703
by Janice Lee Smith
1 volume
When some smelly cowboys who refuse to bathe come to town while the sheriff is away, young Deputy Jess and Deputy Gussy, her aunt, must find a way to enforce the no-stink law. Beginning chapter book. For grades K-3. 2004.

Evangeline Mudd and the Golden-Haired Apes of the Ikkinasti Jungle BR 15704
by David Elliott
1 volume
Nine-year-old Evangeline Mudd's parents, who study primates and raise her as one, travel to the jungle alone to observe apes. When they disappear, Evangeline joins Dr. Aphrodite Pikkaflee to rescue them from the clutches of a developer. For grades 3-6. 2004.

Dr. Jekyll, Orthodontist: The Zack Files BR 15712
by Dan Greenburg
1 volume
While ten-year-old Zack is being treated by Dr. Jekyll, the orthodontist undergoes a strange transformation into a growling monster and Zack's teeth become more crooked. Zack and his dad decide to investigate the doctor's office. For grades 3-6. 1997.

Born Too Short: The Confessions of an Eighth-Grade Basket Case BR 15713
by Dan Elish
1 volume
Matt, a short nerd, is envious of his best friend, Keith, who is five inches taller and a stud/athlete with plenty of girlfriends. But Matt feels guilty when his luck improves and the bad luck he wished on Keith starts happening. For grades 6-9. 2002.

Indigo's Star BR 15737
by Hilary McKay
2 volumes
England. After a long illness, twelve-year-old Indigo returns to school filled with dread. Encouraged by his younger sister Rose, Indigo sticks up for an American boy who has replaced him as the primary target of school bullies. Sequel to Saffy's Angel (BR 14553). For grades 4-7. 2003.

Smoky the Cowhorse BR 15744
by Will James
2 volumes
The life of a spirited smoke-colored horse told in the cowboy vernacular. Follows Smoky's experiences from his birth on the open range and his capture by humans to working as an outlaw rodeo star and saddle horse. For grades 6-9. Newbery Medal. 1926.

Winter of the Ice Wizard: Magic Tree House, Book 32 BR 15745
by Mary Pope Osborne
1 volume
Jack and Annie travel with Teddy and Kathleen to the snowy Land- Behind-the-Clouds to retrieve Merlin's Staff of Strength. But the Ice Wizard has already captured Merlin and Morgan and possesses the staff. The Wizard will only exchange them for his missing eye. For grades 2-4. 2004.

The Ironwood Tree: The Spiderwick Chronicles, Book 4 BR 15746
by Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black
1 volume
Following their adventures in Lucinda's Secret (BR 15436), twins Jared and Simon Grace seek to rescue their kidnapped sister, Mallory, from some evil dwarfs who want to make her their queen. The boys face an impossible task when the Field Guide is discovered missing. For grades 2-4. 2004.

Ninety-five Pounds of Hope BR 15747
by Anna Gavalda
1 volume
France. Thirteen-year-old Gregory hates school and finally is expelled as a repeat sixth-grader. Gregory hopes to use the woodworking skills he learned from his Grandpa Leon to succeed at a new technical school. For grades 5-8. 2002.

Inside Grandad BR 15748
by Peter Dickinson
1 volume
Scotland. Eleven-year-old Gavin tries to enlist the help of selkies (seal people) to communicate with his grandfather, who is left in a coma after a stroke. Gavin spends time at the hospital with his family, willing his grandad to live. For grades 5-8. 2004.

Snap BR 15755
by Alison McGhee
1 volume
To help herself get through difficult situations, eleven-year-old Edwina "Eddie" snaps rubber bands on her wrists. During summer vacation, her best friend, Sally, faces the death of the grandmother who raised her and uncertainties about her own future. But with Eddie, Sally learns to cope. For grades 4-7. 2004.

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