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October 2021 Selections

Preschool

Fletcher and the Falling Leaves

by Julia Rawlinson, illustrations by Tiphanie Beeke

As the leaves fall from his favorite tree, Fletcher worries that something is terribly wrong. But then winter comes and with it a wonderful surprise. Do you know what it is? Join Fletcher and find out . . .
 

 

Milo Imagines the World

by Matt de la Peña, illustrations by Christian Robinson

Milo is on a long subway ride with his older sister. To pass the time, he studies the faces around him and makes pictures of their lives. There's the whiskered man with the crossword puzzle: Milo imagines him playing solitaire in a cluttered apartment full of pets. There's the wedding-dressed woman with a little dog peeking out of her handbag: Milo imagines her in a grand cathedral ceremony. And then there's the boy in the suit with the bright white sneakers: Milo imagines him arriving home to a castle with a drawbridge and a butler. But when the boy in the suit gets off at the same stop as Milo — walking the same path, going to the exact same place — Milo realizes that you can't really know anyone just by looking at them.

 


Primary (Kindergarten–Grade 2)

Thunder Boy Jr. 

by Sherman Alexie, illustrations by Yuyi Morales

Thunder Boy Jr. wants a normal name . . . one that is all his own. Dad is known as Big Thunder, but Little Thunder doesn't want to share a name. He wants a name that celebrates something cool he's done, like Touch the Clouds, Not Afraid of Ten Thousand Teeth, or Full of Wonder.
 


Ojalá supieras/I Wish You Knew (Spanish Edition)

by Jackie Azúa Kramer, illustrations by Magdalena Mora


When Estrella's father has to leave because

he wasn't born here, like her —

she misses him. And she wishes people knew the way it affects her. At home. At school. Always.

But a school wrapped around a hundred-year-old oak tree is the perfect place to share and listen.

Some kids miss family, some kids are hungry, some kids live in shelters, but nobody is alone.

A story about deportation, divided families, and the importance of community in the midst of uncertainty.

 


Intermediate (Grades 3–5)

Almost There and Almost Not

by Linda Urban

California Poppy has been dropped off, yet again, with an unsuspecting relative. This time it's her eccentric Great Aunt Monica, a woman she has never even met. Aunt Monica has no idea what to do with an eleven-year-old, so she puts California to work researching their ancestor, the once-famous etiquette expert, Eleanor Fontaine. California soon discovers that Great-Great-Great Aunt Eleanor is . . . a ghost — and a super-sensitive one at that. The grande dame bursts into clouds of dust whenever she loses her composure, which happens quite often.

 

My Secret Bully/Mi enemiga secreta

by Trudy Ludwig, illustrations by Abigail Marble

When Monica's best friend Katie humiliates her in front of other kids at school, she feels betrayed and isolated. With help from her mom, Monica reclaims her confidence from a bully disguised as a friend. Now in Spanish, the book that has aided children, parents, teachers, and counselors in coping with relational aggression — and the use of relationships to manipulate others — can help a brand-new audience.

 


Middle School (Grades 6–8)

Root Magic

by Eden Royce

It's 1963, and things are changing for Jezebel Turner. Her beloved grandmother has just passed away. The local police deputy won't stop harassing her family. With school integration arriving in South Carolina, Jez and her twin brother, Jay, are about to begin the school year with a bunch of new kids. But the biggest change comes when Jez and Jay turn eleven — and their uncle, Doc, tells them he's going to train them in rootwork.

Jez and Jay have always been fascinated by the African American folk magic that has been the legacy of their family for generations — especially the curious potions and powders that Doc and Gran would make for the people on their island. But Jez soon finds out that her family's true power goes far beyond small charms and elixirs . . . and not a moment too soon. Because when evil both natural and supernatural comes to show itself in town, it's going to take every bit of the magic she has inside her to see her through.

 

La travesía de Santiago/Santiago's Road Home (Spanish Edition)

by Alexandra Diaz

A young boy gets detained by I.C.E. while crossing the border from Mexico to the United States in this timely and unflinching novel by award-winning author Alexandra Diaz.

The bed creaks under Santiago's shivering body. They say a person's life flashes by before dying. But it's not his whole life. Just the events that led to this. The important ones . . . and the ones that Santiago would rather forget.

The coins in Santiago's hand are meant for the bus fare back to his abusive abuela's house. Except that he refuses to return; he won't be missed. His future is uncertain until he meets the kind, maternal María Dolores and her young daughter, Alegría, who help Santiago decide what comes next: He will accompany them to el otro lado,  the United States of America. They embark with little, just backpacks with water and a bit of food. To travel together will require trust from all parties, and Santiago is used to going it alone. None of the three travelers realizes that the journey through Mexico to the border is just the beginning of their story.

 


High School (Grades 9–12)

Little and Lion

by Brandy Colbert

When Suzette comes home to Los Angeles from her boarding school in New England, she isn't sure that she'll ever want to go back. L.A. is where her friends and family are (as well as her crush, Emil). And her stepmother, Lionel, who has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, needs her emotional support.

But as she settles into her old life, Suzette finds herself falling for someone new: the same girl that her brother is in love with. When Lionel's disorder spirals out of control, Suzette is forced to confront her past mistakes and find a way to help her brother before he hurts himself — or worse.

 

Wolf Mark

by Joseph Bruchac

Luke King knows a lot of things. Like four different ways to disarm an enemy before the attacker can take a breath. Like every detail of every book he has ever read. And Luke knows just enough about what his father does as a black ops infiltrator to know which questions not to ask. Like why does his family move around so much? Luke just hopes that this time his family is settled for a while. He'll finally be able to have a normal life. He'll be able to ask the girl he likes to take a ride with him on his motorcycle. He'll hang out with his friends. He'll be invisible just as he wants. 

But when his dad goes missing, Luke realizes that life will always be different for him. Suddenly he must avoid the kidnappers looking to use him as leverage against his father, while at the same time evading the attention of the school's mysterious elite clique of Russian hipsters who seem much too interested in Luke's own personal secret. Faced with multiple challenges and his emerging paranormal identity, Luke must decide who to trust as he creates his own destiny.

 


To access the books on our monthly MPS Reads book lists, visit your school library or local library, or go online to OverDrive* and log in with your MPS student ID number.

*Some titles are not available through OverDrive.

To access the books on our monthly MPS Reads book lists, visit your school library or local library, or go online to OverDrive* and log in with your MPS student ID number.

*Some titles are not available through OverDrive.

Suggest a book

If you would like to recommend a book title, please fill out this form: https://goo.gl/forms/kY7iv9ixf1d6ViaX2

Contact

Reading Curriculum Specialist:

Tanya D. Evans
Phone: 414-475-8110
Email: evanstd@milwaukee.k12.wi.us

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