The Classroom Bookshelf
Inside The Classroom Bookshelf

Towers Falling

Towers Falling Written by Jewell Parker Rhodes Published by Little, Brown and Company 2016 ISBN 978-0-316-26222-4 Grades 4-8 Book Review “Six weeks at a new school has changed everything. School didn’t teach me everything about 9/11. Still, I understand a lot more. I understand some of the enormous hurt to families, my family, and country” […]

A Bandit’s Tale: The Muddled Misadventures of a Pickpocket

A Bandit’s Tale: The Muddled Misadventures of a Pickpocket Written by Deborah Hopkinson Published by Alfred A. Knopf Publishing ISBN: 978-0-385-75499-6 Grades 4-8 Book Review “These days, when anyone asks, I say I’m an American, New York City-born. And why not? Because, in a way, I was born here.” Rocco Zaccaro is ripped away from […]

The Wild Robot

The Wild Robot  Written and Illustrated by Peter Brown Published by Little, Brown April 2016 ISBN: 978-0-316-38199-4 Note: This review was written using an advanced reading copy. Grades 4-8 Book Review  “As you may know, robots don’t really feel emotions. Not the way animals do. And yet, as she sat in her broken crate, Roz […]

Tiny Creatures: The World of Microbes

Tiny Creatures: The World of Microbes Written by Nicola Davies, Illustrated by Emily Sutton Published by Candlewick Press, 2014 ISBN: 978-0-7636-7315-4 Grades 3-5 Book Review Where do you begin the conversation with young people about the tiny microbes in and around us everyday, some of which keep us healthy, some of which make us sick? […]

The Griffin and the Dinosaur

The Griffin and the Dinosaur: How Adrienne Mayor Discovered a Fascinating Link Between Myth and Science Written by Marc Aronson, with Adrienne Mayor Published by National Geographic, 2014 ISBN 978-1-4263-1108-6 Grades 5-8 Book Review If your students root for Gryffindor, dream of attending Camp Half Blood, or find themselves reaching into the backs of their […]

The Great Trouble: A Mystery of London, the Blue Death, and a Boy Called Eel

Written by Deborah Hopkinson Published by Alfred A. Knopf Publishers, Random House, 2013 ISBN 978-0-375-84818-6 Grades 4-8 Book Review Historical fiction as a genre can vary greatly. Some novels for children and young adults provide their readers with a window into a particular time and place. Some may include actual events or real people. But […]

Ben Rides On

Written and Illustrated by Matt Davies A Neal Porter Book, Roaring Brook Press ISBN 978-1-59643-794-4 Grades 2 and Up Book Review A crow, a bicycle, and a green-striped hoodie populate Pulitzer Prize-winning political cartoonist Matt Davies’s first picture book, but no grown-ups. By maintaining a child’s worldview, Davies allows protagonist Ben to be at the […]

Courage has No Color

Written by Tanya Lee Stone Candlewick, 2013   IBSN: 978-0-7636-5117-6 Grades 6 and Up Book Review The reader drops into Courage has No Color, just as thousands of soldiers dropped out of airplanes and into Europe and the Pacific region during World War II. The author carries us through the jump, from plane to ground, […]

Here Come the Humpbacks!

Written by April Pulley Sayre Illustrated by Jamie Hogan Charlesbridge Publishers ISBN 978-1-58089-405-0 All Ages Book Review “The mother and calf swim over underwater hills and valleys. They see seaweed and sailfish and squid. They pass turtles and trash.” Using her trademark writing style (sentences of alternating length, robust verbs, alliteration, and similes and metaphors), […]

2013 Sibert Medal, YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction, Newbery Honor: Bomb

Bomb: The Race to Build –and Steal—The World’s Most Dangerous Weapon by Steve Sheinkin 2012, Roaring Brook Press, Macmillan ISBN: 978-1-59643-487-5 Grades 6 and Up Book Review “It’s a story with no end in sight. And, like it or not, you’re in it.” What story, you may ask? The story of “how humans created a […]