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Meet Rebecca

meetrebeccaRebecca Rubin is the newest American Girl.  Growing up in New York City in 1914, Rebecca celebrates treasured traditions passed down through her Russian-Jewish family.  With a little creativity, she learns how to stay true to her heart as she follows her dreams in the big city.  Read all about Rebecca in this new American Girl series written by Jacqueline Dembar Greene.

Read Any Good Books?

folder1Read any good books lately?  Hopefully, you are reading lots of great books this summer.  If you haven't already, be sure to stop by either Olathe library and pick up a Summer Reading Club folder to keep track of all those books.  Just write down the titles of everything you read and then return your folder to library between August 3-16 and get a free book!

Would you like to tell us about one of your favorite books?  We'd love to hear about it.  Click here to send us an online book review.  Tell us what you liked about the book, and we will post it on our website.  Visit our Kid Picks page to see book reviews other kids have written.  Maybe you'll discover another good book to read this summer.

2009 William Allen White Award Winners

This year approximately 50,000 3rd-8th graders across the state of Kansas voted for their favorite book from the William Allen White Award nominees lists.  And the 2009 winners are:

clementine3rd-5th grader winner---
Clementine by Sara Pennypacker

yellowstar6th-8th grade winner---
Yellow Star by Jennifer Roy

Congratulations to the authors of this year's award-winning books!  If you'd like to get a head start on next year's reading, click here to find the list of 2009-2010 William Allen White nominees on our website.

Superman #1

superman1The very first Superman comic ever came out in June 1938.  It sold for the whopping price of 10 cents.  On March 14, 2009, over 70 years later, an original copy of this very same comic sold at auction for $317,200!  Don't you wish you owned an original copy of that first Superman comic book?

The original Superman story was written by Jerry Siegel, and the artwork was done by Joe Schuster.  If you would like to read more about Siegel and Schuster and how they came to create one of the most popular superheroes of all time, check out the book Boys of Steel: The Creators of Superman.  It's a bird!  It's a plane!  No, it's Superman!

The Underland Chronicles

Below is a "special guest" book review by Chris in the Circulation Department.

underland

The Underland Chronicles by Suzanne Collins is a five book series marketed for children, but don't let that shape your expectations.  The intense and continually expanding plot combined with impressive emotional depth and superb characterizations can easily draw in readers of any age.

Eleven-year-old Gregor and his thoroughly likeable family find themselves caught up in the brutal struggles of a secret world miles beneath New York City. A civilized yet militaristic community of humans share the Underland with large and intelligent creatures, including loyal bats, ferocious rats, and surprisingly noble cockroaches. Time and again, Gregor takes part in increasingly deadly missions in hopes of maintaining a fragile peace. But to do so he must go against his own gentle nature by gradually taking on the role of a warrior.

While this series boldly and admirably addresses such profound issues as racism, loss, the lasting costs of war, and even genocide, what most impressed me was Gregor himself.  Portrayed in a refreshingly realistic manner, Gregor is simply a great kid.  Thoughtful, considerate, self-sacrificing, and determined, he carries the story squarely on his shoulders.  Especially in the epic final installment, Gregor the Overlander shows how much an exceptional child may be willing to suffer, and to lose, for what he knows is right.

Captain Underpants Rules

captunderpants.gifAre you a fan of Captain Underpants?  Do you like Ricky Ricotta's Mighty Robot books?  Is Dav Pilkey one of your favorite authors?  Then I've got a website for you.  You need to check out Dav Pilkey's Extra Crunchy Website o' Fun.  You can find out all about Dav's books, read a cartoon biography of the author, play groovy games, and all kinds of fun stuff.

This is just one of the cool websites for kids on our Cool Sites web page.  Check it out.

Do you have a favorite website that you think other kids would like?  Send us a comment and let us know about it.  We're always looking for fun and excellent websites.

Got Any Picture Books About...?

Do you have any good princess books?  Do you have any easy books about horses?  Do you have any picture books about trains?  Where are your counting books?  Got any dragon stories with pictures?  Here at the library we get questions like this all the time.kids-reading.jpg

In order to help you find picture books on some of the more popular topics, we have posted a Picture Book Finder on our website.  Here you will find a list of popular topics along with various concepts like numbers, letters, colors, etc.  The titles are linked to our catalog so you can see if a book is available at your nearest library, and you can also place a hold on any title.

So the next time you are looking for a picture book about fairies or books about a new baby in the family, check out our Picture Book Finder.  We hope you will find this to be a useful resource.

Presidential Pets

President Barack Obama promised his daughters they could get a puppy after the Presidential campaign was over.  Many people have weighed in on what kind of dog they think would be best for the first family.  If it were up to you, what kind of dog would you choose for Sasha and Malia?

socks-clinton.jpgThere is a long history of pets in the White House.  The Bushes had two Scottish terriers named Barney and Miss Beazley and a cat nicknamed Willie.  Chelsea Clinton had a cat named Socks when her dad was President.  But not all Presidential pets have been so conventional.  Did you know Thomas Jefferson kept two grizzily bear cubs on the White House grounds?  John Quincy Adams kept an alligator in the East Room.  Abraham Lincoln's son had a pet turkey, and Calvin Coolidge had a pet raccoon named Rebecca.

You can read all about the different pets that have resided in the White House in the book Wackiest White House Pets by Gibbs Davis.  Yes, even Presidents love their pets.

And the Winner Is...

newberymedalsm.jpgThe winner of the 2009 Newbery Medal has been announced, and the winner is The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman.  The winner of the 2009 Caldecott Medal is The House in the Night illustrated by Beth Krommes and written by Susan Marie Swanson.

Here is the complete list of award winners and honor books:

Newbery Medal Winner
     The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

Newbery Honor Books
     The Underneath by Kathi Appelt
     The Surrender Tree by Margarita Engle
     Savvy by Ingrid Law
     After Tupac & D Foster by Jacqueline Woodson

Caldecott Medal Winner
     The House in the Night by Susan Marie Swanson, illustrated by Beth
     Krommes

Caldecott Honor Books
     A Couple of Boys Have the Best Week Ever written and illustrated by Marla
     Frazee
     How I Learn Geography written and illustrated by Uri Shulevitz
     A River of Words by Jen Bryant, illustrated by Melissa Sweet

Coretta Scott King Author Award Winner
     We Are the Ship: The Story of Negro League Baseball by Kadir Nelson

Coretta Scott King Author Honor Books
     The Blacker the Berry by Joyce Carol Thomas
     Keeping the Night Watch by Hope Anita Smith
     Becoming Billie Holiday by Carole Boston Weatherford

Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award Winner
     The Blacker the Berry by Joyce Carol Thomas, illustrated by Floyd Cooper

Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor Books
     We Are the Ship: The Story of Negro League Baseball written and illustrated
     by Kadir Nelson
     Before John Was a Jazz Giant by Carole Boston Weatherford, illustrated by
     Sean Qualls
     The Moon Over Star by Dianna Hutts Aston, illustrated by Jerry Pinkney

Pura Belpre Author Award Winner
     The Surrender Tree: Poems of Cuba's Struggle for Freedom by Margarita
     Engle

Pura Belpre Author Honor Books
     Just in Case by Yuyi Morales
     Reaching Out by Francisco Jimenez
     The Storyteller's Candle/La Velita de los Cuentos by Lucia Gonzalez

Pura Belpre Illustrator Award Winner
     Just in Case written and illustrated by Yuyi Morales

Pura Belpre Illustrator Honor Books
     Papa and Me by Arthur Dorros, illustrated by Rudy Gutierrez
     The Storyteller's Candle by Jucia Gonzalez, illustrated by Julu Delacre
     What Can You Do with a Rebozo? by Carmen Tafolla, illustrated by Amy
     Cordova

Theodor Seuss Geisel Award Winner
     Are You Ready to Play Outside? by Mo Willems

Theodor Seuss Geisel Honor Books
     Chicken Said, "Cluck!" by Judyann Ackerman Grant
     One Boy by Laura Vaccaro Seeger
     Stinky by Eleanor Davis
     Wolfsnail: A Backyard Predator by Sarah C. Campbell

Do You Know Dewey?

shipwrecks.gifWe finally made it to the end! The 900s let you travel the world from the comfort of your home. Go back in time and learn about mummies and pyramids. Return to the days of knights and castles. Explore shipwrecks, search for buried treasure, but watch out for the pirates! Travel around the world and learn about how people live in India, or check out a book about Kansas and learn about your own backyard. Here's a breakdown of everything you'll find in the 900s.

900 - Geography & History
910 - Explorers & Atlasesmummies.gif
920 - Flags
930 - Archaeology & Ancient Civilizations
940 - Knights, Castles, World War I & II, European Countries
950 - Asian & Middle Eastern Countries
960 - African Countries
970 - North & Central American Countries, American History, States
980 - South American Countries
990 - Pacific Islands, Australia

 

Other Posts:
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