Central Plains Library System Book Sets
All the Gallant Men by Donald Stratton and Ken Gire — 12 copies + CD
In this extraordinary never-before-told eyewitness account of the Pearl Harbor attack—the only memoir ever written by a survivor of the USS Arizona—ninety-four-year-old veteran Donald Stratton finally shares his unforgettable personal tale of bravery and survival on December 7, 1941, his harrowing recovery, and his inspiring determination to return to the fight.
Anatomy of a Miracle by Jonathan Miles — 10 copies
A profound new novel about a paralyzed young man’s unexplainable recovery—a stunning exploration of faith, science, mystery, and the meaning of life.
Rendered paraplegic after a traumatic event four years ago, Cameron Harris has been living his new existence alongside his sister, Tanya, in their battered Biloxi, Mississippi neighborhood where only half the houses made it through Katrina. One stiflingly hot August afternoon, as Cameron sits waiting for Tanya during their daily run to the Biz-E-Bee convenience store, he suddenly and inexplicably rises up and out of his wheelchair.
The Bend in the River by Susan Gibbs — 12 copies
Orphaned by the sudden deaths of her parents in 1877, seventeen year-old Emma Jorden has to abandon her Kansas home. Lost on the featureless prairie and near death she is rescued by Shea Hawkshadow, a half-breed Cheyenne warrior. Following an impulsive love affair, Emma and Shea marry. When the consequences of their unconventional marriage spark ridicule then quickly escalate to attempted murder, they risk a journey across the western frontier. However, many trials await the couple in their search for a life free from persecution.
Black Elk Speaks by John G. Neihardt — 15 copies
Black Elk Speaks, the story of the Oglala Lakota visionary and healer Nicholas Black Elk (1863-1950) and his people on their journey. Whether appreciated as the poignant tale of a Lakota life, as a history of a Native nation, or as an enduring spiritual testament, Black Elk speaks is unforgettable.
Bob by Wendy Mass and Rebecca Stead — 10 copies (Grades 3-7)
It’s been five years since Livy and her family have visited Livy’s grandmother in Australia. Now that she’s back, Livy has the feeling she’s forgotten something really, really important about Gran’s house. It turns out she’s right. Bob, a short, greenish creature dressed in a chicken suit, didn’t forget Livy, or her promise. He’s been waiting five years for her to come back, hiding in a closet like she told him to. He can’t remember who―or what―he is, where he came from, or if he even has a family. But five years ago Livy promised she would help him find his way back home. Now it’s time to keep that promise. Clue by clue, Livy and Bob will unravel the mystery of where Bob comes from, and discover the kind of magic that lasts forever.
Book Thief by Markus Zukas — 15 copies + CD (Grades 7 & up)
By her brother’s graveside, Liesel Meminger’s life is changed when she picks up a single object, partially hidden in the snow. It is The Grave Digger’s Handbook and it is her first act of book thievery. So begins a love affair with books and words, as Liesel, with the help of her accordion-playing foster father, learns to read.
Captain’s Dog: My Journey with the Lewis and Clark Tribe by Roland Smith — 15 copies (Grades 5-7)
Born the runt of his litter and gambled away to a rusty old river man, the Newfoundland pup Seaman doesn’t imagine his life will be marked by any kind of glory. But when he meets Captain Meriwether Lewis, Seaman finds himself on a path that will make history. Lewis is setting off on his landmark search for the Northwest Passage, and he takes Seaman along. Sharing the curiosity and spirit of his new master, the intrepid dog proves himself a valuable companion at every turn.
Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson — 15 copies (Grades 5-9)
As the Revolutionary War begins, thirteen-year-old Isabel wages her own fight…for freedom. Promised freedom upon the death of their owner, she and her sister, Ruth, in a cruel twist of fate become the property of a malicious New York City couple, the Locktons, who have no sympathy for the American Revolution and even less for Ruth and Isabel. When Isabel meets Curzon, a slave with ties to the Patriots, he encourages her to spy on her owners, who know details of British plans for invasion. She is reluctant at first, but when the unthinkable happens to Ruth, Isabel realizes her loyalty is available to the bidder who can provide her with freedom.
Cracker!: the Best dog in Vietnam by Cynthia Kadohata — 20 copies + CD (Grades 5-9)
Cracker is one of the United States Army’s most valuable weapons: a German shepherd trained to sniff out bombs, traps, and the enemy. The fate of entire platoons rests on her keen sense of smell. She’s a Big Deal, and she likes it that way. Sometimes Cracker remembers when she was younger, and her previous owner would feed her hot dogs and let her sleep in his bed. That was nice, too.
Dealing with Dragons by Patricia Wrede — 12 copies (Grades 5-7)
Meet Princess Cimorene–a princess who refuses to be proper. She is everything a princess is not supposed to be: headstrong, tomboyish smart…And bored. So bored that she runs away to live with a dragon. And not just any dragon, but Kazul–one of the most powerful and dangerous dragons around. Of course, Cimorene has a way of hooking up with dangerous characters, and soon she’s coping with a witch, a jinn, a death-dealing talking bird, a stone prince, and some very oily wizards. If this princess ran away to find some excitement, it looks like she’s found plenty!
Dust-Covered Days of Dorrie Archer by Barbara Eymann Mohrman — 10 copies (Grades 3-7)
Dorie Archer’s carefree childhood days became filled with darkness—no fresh air, no sunshine, no rain, no work for the farmers, and no money. Dorie’s gripping story brings to life the everyday activities of a Nebraska girl and her family during the Dust Bowl as they struggled to survive the enormous challenges of one of the most trying times in Nebraska history.
Eagle Blue by Michael D’Orso — 12 copies
Eagle Blue follows the Fort Yukon Eagles, winners of six regional championships in a row, through the course of an entire 28-game season, from their first day of practice in late November to the Alaska State Championship Tournament in March. With insight, frankness, and compassion, Michael D’Orso climbs into the lives of these fourteen boys, their families, and their coach, shadowing them through an Arctic winter of fifty-below-zero temperatures and near-round-the-clock darkness as the Eagles criss-cross Alaska in pursuit of their-and their village’s-dream.
Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine — 10 copies (Grades 3-7)
At her birth, Ella of Frell receives a foolish fairy’s gift—the “gift” of obedience. Ella must obey any order, whether it’s to hop on one foot for a day and a half, or to chop off her own head! But strong-willed Ella does not accept her fate…Against a bold backdrop of princes, ogres, giants, wicked stepsisters, and fairy godmothers, Ella goes on a quest to break the curse forever.
Escape: The Story of the Great Houdini by Sid Fleischman —
12 copies + CD (Grades 3-7)
How did he walk through walls, escape drowning, and shatter iron chains that were tightly wrapped around him? The rare photos in this book might help you figure it out. So might the exclusive update about the rumor that Houdini was poisoned. But just remember, a true magician never reveals his tricks. . . .
Everlost by Neal Shusterman — 20 copies (Grades 7-9)
Nick and Allie don’t survive the car accident, but their souls don’t exactly get where they’re supposed to go either. Instead, they’re caught halfway between life and death, in a sort of limbo known as Everlost: a shadow of the living world, filled with all the things and places that no longer exist. It’s a magical, yet dangerous place where bands of lost kids run wild and anyone who stands in the same place too long sinks to the center of the Earth.
Fish in a Tree by Lynda Mullaly Hunt — 12 copies (Grades 5-9)
Ally has been smart enough to fool a lot of smart people. Every time she lands in a new school, she is able to hide her inability to read by creating clever yet disruptive distractions. She is afraid to ask for help; after all, how can you cure dumb? However, her newest teacher Mr. Daniels sees the bright, creative kid underneath the trouble maker. With his help, Ally learns not to be so hard on herself and that dyslexia is nothing to be ashamed of. As her confidence grows, Ally feels free to be herself and the world starts opening up with possibilities. She discovers that there’s a lot more to her—and to everyone—than a label, and that great minds don’t always think alike.
Four Blue Stars in the Window by Barbara Eymann Mohrman —
This is the story of hard-scrabble life in rural Oakdale, Nebraska (population 851) starting in the heyday of the 1920s. Chriss Eymann, a newly arrived Swiss immigrant and his wife, Hattie Mae, raised ten children on the Dust Bowl-ravaged plains during the 1930s in the depths of the Great Depression. But their greatest sacrifice was yet to come—when they sent four young sons off to war in the South Pacific and Europe.
Full Tilt by Neal Shusterman — 15 copies (Grades 7-9)
Sixteen-year-old Blake has always been the responsible one in his dysfunctional family — the one who drives safely, gets good grades, and looks after his wild younger brother, Quinn. Quinn is his brother’s opposite — a thrill-seeker who’s always chasing the next scary rush, no matter what the cost. But Quinn and Blake are in for the surprise of their lives when they’re thrust into the world of a bizarre phantom carnival — and their souls are the price of admission.
Fuzzy Mud by Louis Sachar — 12 copies + CD (Grades 5-7)
Fifth grader Tamaya Dhilwaddi and seventh grader Marshall Walsh have been walking to and from Woodridge Academy together since elementary school. But their routine is disrupted when bully Chad Hilligas challenges Marshall to a fight. To avoid the conflict, Marshall takes a shortcut home through the off-limits woods. Tamaya, unaware of the reason for the detour, reluctantly follows. They soon get lost. And then they find trouble. Bigger trouble than anyone could ever have imagined. What they uncover might affect the future of the world.
The Girl Who Was Supposed to Die by April Henry — 12 copies (Grades 6-10)
“Take her out back and finish her off.”
She doesn’t know who she is. She doesn’t know where she is, or why. All she knows when she comes to in a ransacked cabin is that there are two men arguing over whether or not to kill her. And that she must run.
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows — 10 copies
January 1946: London is emerging from the shadow of the Second World War, and writer Juliet Ashton is looking for her next book subject. Who could imagine that she would find it in a letter from a man she’s never met, a native of the island of Guernsey, who has come across her name written inside a book by Charles Lamb….
Hatchet by Gary Paulsen — 19 copies (Grades 6-12)
Thirteen-year-old Brian Robeson is on his way to visit his father when the single-engine plane in which he is flying crashes. Suddenly, Brian finds himself alone in the Canadian wilderness with nothing but a tattered Windbreaker and the hatchet his mother gave him as a present—and the dreadful secret that has been tearing him apart since his parent’s divorce. But now Brian has no time for anger, self pity, or despair—it will take all his know-how and determination, and more courage than he knew he possessed, to survive.
Hattie Big Sky by Kirby Larson — 20 copies + CD (Grades 6-9)
For most of her life, sixteen-year-old Hattie Brooks has been shuttled from one distant relative to another. Tired of being Hattie Here-and-There, she summons the courage to leave Iowa and move all by herself to Vida, Montana, to prove up on her late uncle’s homestead claim. Under the big sky, Hattie braves hard weather, hard times, a cantankerous cow, and her own hopeless hand at the cookstove. Her quest to make a home is championed by new neighbors Perilee Mueller, her German husband, and their children. For the first time in her life, Hattie feels part of a family, finding the strength to stand up against Traft Martin’s schemes to buy her out and against increasing pressure to be a “loyal” American at a time when anything—or anyone—German is suspect. Despite daily trials, Hattie continues to work her uncle’s claim until an unforeseen tragedy causes her to search her soul for the real meaning of home.
Heat by Mike Lupica — 20 copies + CD (Grades 5-8)
Michael Arroyo has a pitching arm that throws serious heat along with aspirations of leading his team all the way to the Little League World Series. But his firepower is nothing compared to the heat Michael faces in his day-to-day life. Newly orphaned after his father led the family’s escape from Cuba, Michael’s only family is his seventeen-year-old brother Carlos. If Social Services hears of their situation, they will be separated in the foster-care system—or worse, sent back to Cuba. Together, the boys carry on alone, dodging bills and anyone who asks too many questions. But then someone wonders how a twelve-year-old boy could possibly throw with as much power as Michael Arroyo throws. With no way to prove his age, no birth certificate, and no parent to fight for his cause, Michael’s secret world is blown wide open, and he discovers that family can come from the most unexpected sources.
Holes by Louis Sachar — 20 copies + CD (Grades 4-7)
Stanley Yelnats is under a curse. A curse that began with his no-good-dirty-rotten-pig-stealing-great-great-grandfather and has since followed generations of Yelnatses. Now Stanley has been unjustly sent to a boys’ detention center, Camp Green Lake, where the boys build character by spending all day, every day digging holes exactly five feet wide and five feet deep. There is no lake at Camp Green Lake. But there are an awful lot of holes.
Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins – 13 copies (Grades 7 and up)
In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. Long ago the districts waged war on the Capitol and were defeated. As part of the surrender terms, each district agreed to send one boy and one girl to appear in an annual televised event called, “The Hunger Games,” a fight to the death on live TV.
I Love You, Michael Collins by Lauren Baratz-Logsted — 10 copies (Grades 4 and up)
It’s 1969 and the country is gearing up for what looks to be the most exciting moment in U.S. history: men landing on the moon. Ten-year-old Mamie’s class is given an assignment to write letters to the astronauts. All the girls write to Neil Armstrong (“So cute!”) and all the boys write to Buzz Aldrin (“So cool!”). Only Mamie writes to Michael Collins, the astronaut who will come so close but never achieve everyone else’s dream of walking on the moon, because he is the one who must stay out in space with the ship.
If I Stay by Gayle Forman — 15 copies (Grades 9 and up)
In the blink of an eye everything changes. Seventeen year-old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall what happened afterwards, watching her own damaged body being taken from the wreck. Little by little she struggles to put together the pieces- to figure out what she has lost, what she has left, and the very difficult choice she must make.
Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot — 15 copies
Her name was Henrietta Lacks, but scientists know her as HeLa. She was a poor black tobacco farmer whose cells—taken without her knowledge in 1951—became one of the most important tools in medicine, vital for developing the polio vaccine, cloning, gene mapping, and more. Henrietta’s cells have been bought and sold by the billions, yet she remains virtually unknown, and her family can’t afford health insurance
Inkheart by Cornelia Funke — 12 copies (Grades 3-7)
One cruel night, Meggie’s father reads aloud from a book called INKHEART– and an evil ruler escapes the boundaries of fiction and lands in their living room. Suddenly, Meggie is smack in the middle of the kind of adventure she has only read about in books. Meggie must learn to harness the magic that has conjured this nightmare. For only she can change the course of the story that has changed her life forever.
Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick — 10 copies
Orphan, clock keeper, and thief, Hugo lives in the walls of a busy Paris train station, where his survival depends on secrets and anonymity. But when his world suddenly interlocks with an eccentric, bookish girl and a bitter old man who runs a toy booth in the station, Hugo’s undercover life, and his most precious secret, are put in jeopardy.
Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key by Jack Gantos — 20 copies
Joey Pigza’s got heart, he’s got a mom who loves him, and he’s got “dud meds,” which is what he calls the Ritalin pills that are supposed to even out his wild mood swings. Sometimes Joey makes bad choices. He learns the hard way that he shouldn’t stick his finger in the pencil sharpener, or swallow his house key, or run with scissors. Joey ends up bouncing around a lot – and eventually he bounces himself all the way downtown, into the district special-ed program, which could be the end of the line. As Joey knows, if he keeps making bad choices, he could just fall between the cracks for good. But he is determined not to let that happen.
A Lantern in Her Hand by Beth Streeter Aldrich — 19 copies
Abbie Mackenzie dreamed of becoming a fine lady like her aristocratic grandmother, devoting herself to music and art. But at eighteen Abbie found a different dream, turning away from the promise of a comfortable life as a doctor’s wife to marry handsome, quiet Will Deal. Together, they eagerly accepted the challenge of homesteading in Nebraska territory, where the prairies stretched as far as the eye could see, and only the strongest survived for long.
Lemons by Melissa Savage — 10 copies (Grades 3-7)
Lemonade Liberty Witt’s mama always told her: When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. But Lem can’t possibly make lemonade out of her new life in Willow Creek, California—the Bigfoot Capital of the World—where she’s forced to live with a grandfather she’s never met after her mother passes away.
Lightening Thief by Rick Riordan – 10 copies + CD (Grades 5-9)
Percy Jackson is about to be kicked out of boarding school…again. And that’s the least of his troubles. Lately, mythological monsters and the gods of Mount Olympus seem to be walking straight out of the pages of Percy’s Greek mythology textbook and into his life. And worse, he’s angered a few of them. Zeus’s master lightning bolt has been stolen, and Percy is the prime suspect.
Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis — 14 copies
Four adventurous siblings—Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy Pevensie—step through a wardrobe door and into the land of Narnia, a land frozen in eternal winter and enslaved by the power of the White Witch. But when almost all hope is lost, the return of the Great Lion, Aslan, signals a great change . . . and a great sacrifice.
Local Wonders by Ted Kooser — 20 copies
Ted Kooser describes with exquisite detail and humor the place he calls home in the rolling hills of southeastern Nebraska—an area known as the Bohemian Alps. Nothing is too big or too small for his attention. Memories of his grandmother’s cooking are juxtaposed with reflections about the old-fashioned outhouse on his property. When casting his eye on social progress, Kooser reminds us that the closing of local schools, thoughtless county weed control, and irresponsible housing development destroy more than just the view.
Magic Misfits by Neil Patrick Harris — 12 copies (Grades 3-7)
When street magician Carter runs away, he never expects to find friends and magic in a sleepy New England town. But like any good trick, things change instantly as greedy B.B. Bosso and his crew of crooked carnies arrive to steal anything and everything they can get their sticky fingers on.
Max and the Midknights by Lincoln Peirce — 10 copies (Grades 3-7)
Max wants to be a knight! Too bad that dream is about as likely as finding a friendly dragon. But when Max’s uncle Budrick is kidnapped by the cruel King Gastley, Max has to act…and fast! Joined by a band of brave adventurers–the Midknights–Max sets out on a thrilling quest: to save Uncle Budrick and restore the realm of Byjovia to its former high spirits!
Maxi’s Secrets (or What You Can Learn from a Dog) by Lynn Plourde — 10 copies (Grades 5-9)
Timminy knows that moving to a new town just in time to start middle school when you are perfect bully bait is less than ideal. But he gets a great consolation prize in Maxi—a gentle giant of a dog who the family quickly discovers is deaf. Timminy is determined to do all he can to help Maxi—after all, his parents didn’t return him because he was a runt. But when the going gets rough for Timminy, who spends a little too much time getting shoved into lockers at school, Maxi ends up being the one to help him—along with their neighbor, Abby, who doesn’t let her blindness define her and bristles at Timminy’s “poor-me” attitude. It turns out there’s more to everyone than what’s on the surface, whether it comes to Abby, Maxi, or even Timminy himself.
The Meaning of Names by Karen Shoemaker — 15 copies
Set in 1918 in the farm country at the heart of America, The Meaning of Names is the story of an ordinary woman trying to raise a family during extraordinary times. Estranged from her parents because she married against their will, confronted with violence and prejudice against her people, and caught up in the midst of the worst plague the world has ever seen, Gerda Vogel, an American of German descent, must find the strength to keep her family safe from the effects of a war that threatens to consume the whole world.
My Daniel by Pam Conrad — 20 Copies (Grades 4-8)
“All I want to find is one dinosaur,” Daniel was saying. “And I’ll find it right here. Like I do all my fossils.” Wandering through the Natural History Museum with her grandchildren, Julia Creath feels the presence of her dead brother, Daniel, she remembers a time when fossil fever hit everyone, old and young — a time when people would kill for those old bones under the ground. Julia becomes the Nebraska farm girl she once was, as she weaves together the story of the great dinosaur rush — an adventurous tale of love and treachery, but most of all the story of her own childhood, and of the older brother she loved more than anything. Daniel had a dream that Julia shared — and the she alone would see come true.
Nebraska Presence: An Anthology of Poetry — 10 copies
On Jan. 22, 2018 Governor Pete Ricketts signed a proclamation honoring 2018 One Book One Nebraska: Nebraska Presence: An Anthology of Poetry edited by Greg Kosmicki and Mary K. Stillwell. Nebraska Presence includes poems by more than 80 contemporary Nebraska poets, including Pulitzer Prize winner and former Poet Laureate of the United States Ted Kooser, Nebraska State Poet Twyla Hansen, former State Poet William Kloefkorn, and many others.
Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman — 20 copies (Grades 7-12)
Richard Mayhew is a young London businessman with a good heart whose life is changed forever when he stops to help a bleeding girl—an act of kindness that plunges him into a world he never dreamed existed. Slipping through the cracks of reality, Richard lands in Neverwhere—a London of shadows and darkness, monsters and saints, murderers and angels that exists entirely in a subterranean labyrinth.
O Pioneers by Willa Cather — 15 copies
“O Pioneers!” introduces us to the Bergsons, a family of Swedish-American immigrants who live in the fictional farm town of Hanover, Nebraska at the beginning of the 20th century. The story centers on the life of Alexandra Bergson, who inherits the family farm with her mother and three brothers when her father dies. Many years of crop failures force the Bergson’s neighbors to give up and sell their farms, something that Alexandra’s brothers Oscar and Lou wish to do but which Alexandra and her mother are unwilling to do. Instead Alexandra convinces the family to mortgage their homestead in order to buy up the surrounding acreage.
Once Upon A Town by Bob Greene — 13 copies
During World War II, American soldiers from every city and walk of life rolled through North Platte, Nebraska, on troop trains en route to their ultimate destinations in Europe and the Pacific. The tiny town, wanting to offer the servicemen warmth and support, transformed its modest railroad depot into the North Platte Canteen. Every day of the year, every day of the war, the Canteen–staffed and funded entirely by local volunteers–was open from five a.m. until the last troop train of the day pulled away after midnight. Astonishingly, this remote plains community of only 12,000 people provided welcoming words, friendship, and baskets of food and treats to more than six million GIs by the time the war ended.
Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline — 13 copies + CD
Penobscot Indian Molly Ayer is close to “aging out” out of the foster care system. A community service position helping an elderly woman clean out her home is the only thing keeping Molly out of juvie and worse…
As she helps Vivian sort through her possessions and memories, Molly learns that she and Vivian aren’t as different as they seem to be. A young Irish immigrant orphaned in New York City, Vivian was put on a train to the Midwest with hundreds of other children whose destinies would be determined by luck and chance.
Panic by Sharon Draper — 13 copies (Grades 8 and up)
This gripping, chillingly realistic novel from New York Times bestselling author Sharon Draper, “by turns pulse-pounding and inspiring” (Kirkus Reviews), shows that all it takes is one bad decision for a dream to become a nightmare. Diamond knows not to get into a car with a stranger. But what if the stranger is well-dressed and handsome? On his way to meet his wife and daughter? And casting a movie that very night—a movie in need of a star dancer? What then? Then Diamond might make the wrong decision.
Peak by Roland Smith — 20 copies (Grades 7-9)
After fourteen-year-old Peak Marcello is arrested for scaling a New York City skyscraper, he’s left with two choices: wither away in Juvenile Detention or go live with his long-lost father, who runs a climbing company in Thailand. But Peak quickly learns that his father’s renewed interest in him has strings attached. Big strings. As owner of Peak Expeditions, he wants his son to be the youngest person to reach the Everest summit–and his motives are selfish at best. Even so, for a climbing addict like Peak, tackling Everest is the challenge of a lifetime. But it’s also one that could cost him his life.
Red Cell by John Kalkowski — 12 copies (Grades 6-9)
Will Conlan is an unconventional thinker. After winning a baseball game with an innovative toss of a rosin bag, he catches the interest of a chief operative of the Homeland Security’s Analytic Red Cell. Employing the creative problem solving of philosophers, futurists, and Hollywood movie writers, this intelligence unit is seeking any original ideas about anticipating terrorist plots.
Rescue Josh McGuire by Ben Michaelsen — 17 copies
When thirteen-year-old Josh runs away to the mountains of Montana with an orphaned bear cub destined for laboratory testing, they both must fight for their lives in a sudden snowstorm.
Rules by Cynthia Lord — 19 copies + CD (Grades 4-7)
Twelve-year-old Catherine just wants a normal life. Which is near impossible when you have a brother with autism and a family that revolves around his disability. She’s spent years trying to teach David the rules from “a peach is not a funny-looking apple” to “keep your pants on in public”—in order to head off David’s embarrassing behaviors. But the summer Catherine meets Jason, a surprising, new sort-of friend, and Kristi, the next-door friend she’s always wished for, it’s her own shocking behavior that turns everything upside down and forces her to ask: What is normal?
Running out of Time by Margaret Peterson Haddix — 20 copies + CD (Grades 3-7)
Jessie lives with her family in the frontier village of Clifton, Indiana, in 1840 — or so she believes. When diphtheria strikes the village and the children of Clifton start dying, Jessie’s mother reveals a shocking secret — it’s actually 1996, and they are living in a reconstructed village that serves as a tourist site. In the world outside, medicine exists that can cure the dread disease, and Jessie’s mother is sending her on a dangerous mission to bring back help.
Schwa Was Here by Neal Shusterman — 13 copies + CD (Grades 7-9)
They say his clothes blend into the background, no matter where he stands. They say a lot of things about the Schwa, but one thing’s for sure: no one ever noticed him. Except me. My name is Antsy Bonano, and I was the one who realized the Schwa was “functionally invisible” and used him to make some big bucks. But I was also the one who caused him more grief than a friend should. So if you all just shut up and listen, I’ll tell you everything there is to know about the Schwa, from how he got his name, to what really happened with his mom. I’ll spill everything. Unless, of course, “the Schwa Effect” wipes him out of my brain before I’m done….
Shiloh by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor — 20 copies (Grades 3-7)
When Marty Preston comes across a young beagle in the hills behind his home, it’s love at first sight—and also big trouble. It turns out the dog, which Marty names Shiloh, belongs to Judd Travers, who drinks too much and has a gun—and abuses his dogs. So when Shiloh runs away from Judd to Marty, Marty just has to hide him and protect him from Judd. But Marty’s secret becomes too big for him to keep to himself, and it exposes his entire family to Judd’s anger. How far will Marty have to go to make Shiloh his?
The Sky at Our Feet by Nadia Hashimi — 10 copies + CD (Grades 3-7)
Jason has just learned that his Afghan mother has been living illegally in the United States since his father was killed in Afghanistan. Although Jason was born in the US, it’s hard to feel American now when he’s terrified that his mother will be discovered—and that they will be separated.
Slacker by Gordon Korman — 10 copies
Cameron Boxer is very happy to spend his life avoiding homework, hanging out with his friends, and gaming for hours in his basement. It’s not too hard for him to get away with it . . . until he gets so caught up in one game that he almost lets his house burn down around him. Oops. It’s time for some serious damage control — so Cameron and his friends invent a fake school club that will make it seem like they’re doing good deeds instead of slacking off. The problem? Some kids think the club is real — and Cameron is stuck being president. Soon Cameron is part of a mission to save a beaver named Elvis from certain extinction. Along the way, he makes some new friends — and some powerful new enemies. The guy who never cared about anything is now at the center of everything . . . and it’s going to take all his slacker skills to win this round.
Sold on a Monday by Kristina McMorris — 9 copies
2 CHILDREN FOR SALE The sign is a last resort. It sits on a farmhouse porch in 1931, but could be found anywhere in an era of breadlines, bank runs and broken dreams. It could have been written by any mother facing impossible choices. For struggling reporter Ellis Reed, the gut-wrenching scene evokes memories of his family’s dark past. He snaps a photograph of the children, not meant for publication. But when it leads to his big break, the consequences are more devastating than he ever imagined. At the paper, Lillian Palmer is haunted by her role in all that happened. She is far too familiar with the heartbreak of children deemed unwanted. As the bonds of motherhood are tested, she and Ellis must decide how much they are willing to risk to mend a fractured family.
Stick Dog by Tom Watson — 10 copies (Grades 3-7)
He’ll make you laugh…he’ll make you cry…but above all, he’ll make you hungry! Follow Stick Dog as he goes on an epic quest for the perfect burger. With hilarious text and stick-figure drawings, reluctant readers will eat this one up!
Stormbreaker by Anthony Horowitz–10 copies + CD (Grades 6-9)
They said his uncle Ian died in a car accident. But Alex Rider knows that’s a lie, and the bullet holes in the windshield prove it. Yet he never suspected the truth: his uncle was really a spy for Britain’s top secret intelligence agency. And now Alex has been recruited to find his uncle’s killers . . .
Stranded by Ben Mikaelsen — 16 copies (Grades 4-7)
Koby’s whole life changed after the accident four years ago. Between the smothering concern of her separated parents and the awkward glances from the kids at school, Koby only feels at home when she is on the ocean in her dinghy.
Stripped Bare by Shannon Baker — 5 copies
Kate Fox is living the dream. She’s married to Grand County Sheriff Ted Conner, the heir to her beloved Nebraska Sandhills cattle ranch, where they live with Kate’s orphaned niece, Carly. One night Kate answers a shattering phone call from Roxy at the Bar J. Carly’s granddad Eldon, owner of the ranch, is dead and Ted has been shot and may never walk again. Kate knows she must find the killer before it’s too late…
This Blessed Earth: A Year in the Life of an American Family Farm by Ted Genoways — 12 copies
The family farm lies at the heart of our national identity, and yet its future is in peril. Rick Hammond grew up on a farm, and for forty years he has raised cattle and crops on his wife’s fifth-generation homestead in Nebraska, in hopes of passing it on to their four children. But as the handoff nears, their small family farm–and their entire way of life–are under siege. Following the Hammonds from harvest to harvest, Ted Genoways explores the rapidly changing world of small, traditional farming operations. He creates a vivid and nuanced portrait of a radically new landscape and one family’s fight to preserve their legacy and the life they love.
To the Stars Through Difficulties by Romalyn Tilghman — 12 copies
Andrew Carnegie funded fifty-nine public libraries in Kansas in the early 20th century―but it was frontier women who organized waffle suppers, minstrel shows, and women’s baseball games to buy books to fill them. Now, a century later, Angelina returns to her father’s hometown of New Hope to complete her dissertation on the Carnegie libraries, just as Traci and Gayle arrive in town―Traci as an artist-in-residence at the renovated Carnegie Arts Center and Gayle as a refugee whose neighboring town, Prairie Hill, has just been destroyed by a tornado. The discovery of an old journal inspires the women to create a library and arts center as the first act of rebuilding Prairie Hill after the tornado. As they work together to raise money for the center, Traci reveals her enormous heart, Angelina discovers that problem-solving is more valuable than her PhD, and Gayle demonstrates that courage is not about waiting out a storm but building a future.
Touching Spirit Bear by Ben Mikaelsen — 20 copies + CD
After severely injuring Peter Driscal in an empty parking lot, mischief-maker Cole Matthews is in major trouble. But instead of jail time, Cole is given another option: attend Circle Justice, an alternative program that sends juvenile offenders to a remote Alaskan Island to focus on changing their ways. Desperate to avoid prison, Cole fakes humility and agrees to go. While there, Cole is mauled by a mysterious white bear and left for dead. Thoughts of his abusive parents, helpless Peter, and his own anger cause him to examine his actions and seek redemption—from the spirit bear that attacked him, from his victims, and from himself.
Towers Falling by Jewell Parker Rhodes — 10 copies + CD (Grades 3-7)
When her fifth-grade teacher hints that a series of lessons about home and community will culminate with one big answer about two tall towers once visible outside their classroom window, Dèja can’t help but feel confused. She sets off on a journey of discovery, with new friends Ben and Sabeen by her side. But just as she gets closer to answering big questions about who she is, what America means, and how communities can grow (and heal), she uncovers new questions, too. Like, why does Pop get so angry when she brings up anything about the towers?
Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt — 16 copies (Grades 5-8)
Doomed to―or blessed with―eternal life after drinking from a magic spring, the Tuck family wanders about trying to live as inconspicuously and comfortably as they can. When ten-year-old Winnie Foster stumbles on their secret, the Tucks take her home and explain why living forever at one age is less a blessing that it might seem.
Unwind by Neal Schusterman — 20 copies (Grades 7 and up)
In America after the Second Civil War, the Pro-Choice and Pro-Life armies came to an agreement: The Bill of Life states that human life may not be touched from the moment of conception until a child reaches the age of thirteen. Between the ages of thirteen and eighteen, however, a parent may choose to retroactively get rid of a child through a process called “unwinding.” Unwinding ensures that the child’s life doesn’t “technically” end by transplanting all the organs in the child’s body to various recipients. Now a common and accepted practice in society, troublesome or unwanted teens are able to easily be unwound. With breathtaking suspense, this book follows three teens who all become runaway Unwinds.
The Vanderbeekers of 141st Street by Karina Yan Glaser — 12 copies (Grades 3-7)
The Vanderbeekers have always lived in the brownstone on 141st Street. It’s practically another member of the family. So when their reclusive, curmudgeonly landlord decides not to renew their lease, the five siblings have eleven days to do whatever it takes to stay in their beloved home and convince the dreaded Beiderman just how wonderful they are. And all is fair in love and war when it comes to keeping their home.
White Star: A Dog on the Titanic by Marty Crisp — 10 copies
This book tells the story of twelve-year-old Sam Harris, who had spent six years in England with his grandparents after his father’s death and was going home to the United States to join his mother and new stepfather, whom he did not want to meet. Sam helped take care of the dogs in the Titanic’s kennels, and he particularly loved an Irish setter he called Star, who was owned by J. Bruce Ismay, who also owned the White Star Line and thus the Titanic itself. A different perspective on a historic event.
The Wild Robot by Peter Brown — 6 copies (Grades 3-7)
When robot Roz opens her eyes for the first time, she discovers that she is all alone on a remote, wild island. She has no idea how she got there or what her purpose is–but she knows she needs to survive. After battling a violent storm and escaping a vicious bear attack, she realizes that her only hope for survival is to adapt to her surroundings and learn from the island’s unwelcoming animal inhabitants. As Roz slowly befriends the animals, the island starts to feel like home–until, one day, the robot’s mysterious past comes back to haunt her.
Wishtree by Katherine Applegate — 10 copies (Grades 4-8)
Red is an oak tree who is many rings old. Red is the neighborhood “wishtree”―people write their wishes on pieces of cloth and tie them to Red’s branches. Along with a crow named Bongo and other animals who seek refuge in Red’s hollows, this wishtree watches over the neighborhood. You might say Red has seen it all. Until a new family moves in. Not everyone is welcoming, and Red’s experience as a wishtree is more important than ever.
Western Library System Book Sets (scroll down page)