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What's a Palindrome?

A palindrome is a word or phrase that reads the same forwards and backwards.  It could be as simple as a word like "mom" or "dad" or "radar."  It could be a name like "Hannah" or "Bob."  It could be a phrase or sentence like "race car" or "Step on no pets" or "Rise to vote, sir." potatopan.gifThe library has a number of books about palindromes, including several by author Jon Agee.  His palindrome books include So Many Dynamos; Go Hang a Salami! I'm a Lasagna Hog!; Sit on a Potato Pan, Otis!; and Jon Agee's Palindromania.  Mr. Agee illustrates the palindromes with humorous black and white cartoon sketches.  They can be very funny! Can you think of some palindromes?  If you need a little inspiration, come to the library and check out one of these great little books.

Happy Kansas Day!

kansasflag.jpgToday is our state's 147th birthday.  Happy birthday, Kansas!  Why not celebrate by reading a book by a Kansas author or illustrator?  You might be surprised at the number of books the library owns by writers and artists who live right here in our home state.  Here are a few of the Kansans who have children's books in our collection:  Jane Kurtz, Brad Sneed, Andrea Warren, Richard W. Jennings, Stephen T. Johnson, Roderick Townley, LouAnn Gaeddert, Thomas B. Allen, just to name a few. Check one out today!

And the Winner Is...

It's award season again in the world of children's literature.  The 2008 Newbery and Caldecott Award winners have been announced, and here they are: goodmasters.jpgNewbery Award Winner      Good Masters! Sweet Ladies!      Voices from a Medieval Village      by Laura Amy Schlitz           Newbery Honor Books      Elijah of Buxton by Christopher Paul Curtis      The Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt      Feathers by Jacqueline Woodson inventionofhugocabret.jpgCaldecott Award Winner      The Invention of Hugo Cabret      by Brian Selznick             Caldecott Honor Books      Henry's Freedom Box illustrated by Kadir Nelson & written by Ellen Levine      First the Egg by Laura Vaccaro Seeger      The Wall by Peter Sis      Knuffle Bunny Too by Mo Willems And here are the winners of the Coretta Scott King Awards: Coretta Scott King Award Winner for Author      Elijah of Buxton by Christopher Paul Curtis Coretta Scott King Honor Books for Author      November Blues by Sharon Draper      Twelve Rounds to Glory by Charles R. Smith, Jr. Coretta Scott King Award Winner for Illustrator      Let It Shine: Three Favorite Spirituals by Ashley Bryan Coretta Scott King Honor Books for Illustrator      The Secret Olivia Told Me illustrated by Nancy Devard & written by N. Joy      Jazz on a Saturday Night illustrated by Diane Dillon & written by Leo Dillon

Vote for Books

If you've watched the news on TV at all recently, you've probably been hearing a lot of talk about presidential primaries, caucuses and debates.  Or maybe you've heard your parents discussing which candidates they support or would never support in a million years. voteforbooks.jpgWell, here's your chance to vote for something.  What is your all-time favorite book?  Beginning on January 1 kids across the nation will be voting on their all-time favorite picture books and chapter books.  On May 1 the top eight "candidates" in each category will announced.  On September 1 the first round of voting begins among the eight finalists.  Beginning September 22 vote again from among the top four finalists.  Finally, on October 13 the two most popular titles will face off for the final round of voting.  Votes will be tallied after midnight on Election Day, November 4, and the winners will be announced on November 5.  To cast your vote, go to www.voteforbooks.com.  You can also find a link to this website on our Good Books page.  May the best book win!

The Night Before Christmas

Christmas Eve is almost here, and so what better time to read that famous poem by Clemente Clark Moore, "The Night Before Christmas."  The library has many different books based on this poem which was first published in a newspaper in 1823.  There is 'Twas the Night B'fore Christmas, an African-American version of the poem.  There is Gullah Night Before Christmas, told in the Gullah dialect of South Carolina and Georgia.  If you're in the mood for something a little scary, perhaps you should try The Night Before Christmas: A Goblin Tale.  There is The Night Before Christmas: Told in Signed English and even a version by the creator of the I Spy books called Can You See What I See? The Night Before Christmas.  The Grandma Moses Night Before Christmas illustrates the familiar narrative with stnick.jpgpaintings by the famous folk artist.  There are also many other traditional versions by various illustrators, including Tomie dePaola, Tasha Tudor, James Marshall, Mary Engelbreit, Lisbeth Zwerger, and others. Why not create a new family tradition by gathering the family together on the "night before Christmas" and reading aloud this well-loved poem?  As you can see, there are many versions to choose from at the Olathe libraries.  Happy holidays to all!

New Girl in Town

meet-julie.gifHave you met the newest "American Girl"?  Her name is Julie Albright.  She lives in San Francisco, California in the 1970's.  Her parents' recent divorce means many changes for Julie, including moving away from her best friend, Ivy Ling, a Chinese-American girl.  In the "Julie" books you'll learn about the women's movement, the U.S. bicentennial, presidential elections, divorce, environmentalists, and other issues from the turbulent 70's. Fans of the Judy Moody books may be interested to know that all of the "Julie" books are written by Megan McDonald.  So call the library to get on the waiting list for the books in this new series or place your hold through our online catalog.

Read Any Good Books Lately?

waydowndeep.gifOne summer day in 1944 a red-headed, curly-haired toddler mysteriously appears on the courthouse steps in Way Down Deep, Vest Virginia.  Who is she?  How did she get there?  You'll have to read Way Down Deep by Ruth White to find out.  It's one of the best books I've read recently.  Have you read any good books lately?  Click on the "Comments" link below and tell us about the last good book you've read.

Finding Award Winners

Have you ever wished you could see a list of all the Newbery or Caldecott award winning books?  This is something we get asked for quite often at the library.  Well, there is a nifty way to get this information in our library catalog.  Here's what you do:

What Comes Next?

book-question-mark.jpgHere at the library we often get asked questions like, "What's the name of the fourth book in the Little House on the Prairie series?" or "What book comes after Among the Betrayed by Margaret Peterson Haddix?" or "What's the name of book #28 in the Magic Tree House series?"  Well, if you've ever found yourself asking a question like this, here's a great website for you:  Juvenile Series and Sequels.  On this website you can type in a title and see other books in the same series...in order.  You can also search by author, subject, or series title.  You can always find a link to this website on our Cool Sites for Kids web page under "Books & Magazines." So if you are, for instance, attempting to read all the Boxcar Children books in order, this would be a great resource.

New DVDs

speedracer.gifDid you ever wish you could see a list of the newest DVDs in the Children's Department?  Well, you can!  Just click "Reader's Advisory" at the top of this page and then click the "New DVDs/Videos" link on the lefthand side of the Reader's Advisory page.  This will take you to a list of the newest DVDs the library has purchased.  The Adult titles are listed first followed by Children's titles.  You can just click on any title to see if it is available or checked out, and if it is checked out, you can place a hold to get on the waiting list.  You can also click "New Audios" to see the latest books on CD.  Click here to go directly to the list of DVDs.
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