January Reading Challenge

Books to Read as a Family

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The book thief

The book thief

Zusak, Markus, author
2006

The extraordinary #1  New York Times  bestseller that is now a major motion picture, Markus Zusak's unforgettable story is about the ability of books to feed the soul.

It is 1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will become busier still.

Liesel Meminger is a foster girl living outside of Munich, who scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can't resist-books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement.

In superbly crafted writing that burns with intensity, award-winning author Markus Zusak, author of I Am the Messenger, has given us one of the most enduring stories of our time.

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Half magic

Half magic

Eager, Edward.
1999

Since "Half Magic" first hit bookshelves in 1954, Edward Eager's tales of magic have become beloved classics. Now four cherished stories about vacationing cousins who stumble into magical doings and whimsical adventures are available in updated paperback formats. Illustrations. Copyright © Libri GmbH. All rights reserved.

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Harry Potter and the philosopher's stone

Harry Potter and the philosopher's stone

Rowling, J. K.
2000

Harry Potter thinks he is an ordinary boy until he is rescued by an owl, taken to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, learns to play Quidditch and does battle in a deadly duel. The Reason: HARRY POTTER IS A WIZARD!

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Holes

Holes

Sachar, Louis, 1954-
2008

10th Anniversary Edition

Louis Sachar received great recognition for his groundbreaking story of Stanley Yelnats - a boy with a history of bad luck. As School Library Journal predicted in their starred review of the book when it was first published, "Kids will love Holes ." A decade later, the book is still quenching young readers' thirst for a gripping story about a far-reaching family curse, friendship, adventure, endurance, and, finally, a generous helping of good karma.

Celebrate with this special 10th Anniversary Edition, which includes portraits of the author as a little brother (by his big brother), as a husband (by his wife), and as a father (by his daughter), along with photos and Louis Sachar's 1999 Newbery acceptance speech. Vladimir Radunsky, who created the original iconoclastic cover illustration, has made new art from the familiar images. Wrapped in an acetate jacket, this edition is an appealing package that will be equally welcome in public, school, or home libraries.

Holes is a 1998 New York Times Book Review Notable Children's Book of the Year and the winner of the 1998 National Book Award for Young People's Literature, the 1999 Boston Globe - Horn Book Award for Fiction and the 1999 Newbery Medal.

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The house on Mango street

The house on Mango street

Cisneros, Sandra
2009

The bestselling coming-of-age classic, acclaimed by critics, beloved by readers of all ages, taught in schools and universities alike, and translated around the world from the winner of the 2018 PEN/Nabokov Award for Achievement in International Literature.

The House on Mango Street is the remarkable story of Esperanza Cordero, a young Latina girl growing up in Chicago, inventing for herself who and what she will become. Told in a series of vignettes-sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes deeply joyous-Sandra Cisneros' masterpiece is a classic story of childhood and self-discovery. Few other books in our time have touched so many readers.

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The lion, the witch and the wardrobe

The lion, the witch and the wardrobe

Lewis, C. S. (Clive Staples), 1898-1963
2000

C. S. Lewis's most famous children's book presented as a graphic novel. First Lucy, then Edmund, Susan and Peter discover that through the wardrobe lies the enchanted land of Narnia -- a land of Talking Animals, Dwarfs and Fauns, a land held in the grip of the White Witch, where it is always winter, and never Christmas. But once there, the children are taken under Mr Beaver'swing, and Mr Beaver leads them to Aslan, the Great Lion, who has plans for them, and for Narnia. A reissue of this classic story told in graphic novel style with glowing full colour illustrations.

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The miraculous journey of Edward Tulane

The miraculous journey of Edward Tulane

DiCamillo, Kate, author
2007

A timeless tale by the incomparable Kate DiCamillo, complete with stunning full-color plates by Bagram Ibatoulline, honors the enduring power of love.

Once, in a house on Egypt Street, there lived a china rabbit named Edward Tulane. The rabbit was very pleased with himself, and for good reason: he was owned by a girl named Abilene, who treated him with the utmost care and adored him completely.

And then, one day, he was lost.

Kate DiCamillo takes us on an extraordinary journey, from the depths of the ocean to the net of a fisherman, from the top of a garbage heap to the fireside of a hoboes' camp, from the bedside of an ailing child to the bustling streets of Memphis. And along the way, we are shown a true miracle -- that even a heart of the most breakable kind can learn to love, to lose, and to love again.

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Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children

Riggs, Ransom, author
2011

A mysterious island.An abandoned orphanage.A strange collection of very curious photographs.It all waits to be discovered in Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, an unforgettable novel that mixes fiction and photography in a thrilling reading experience. As our story opens, a horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow-impossible though it seems-they may still be alive.A spine-tingling fantasy illustrated with haunting vintage photography, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children will delight adults, teens, and anyone who relishes an adventure in the shadows.

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Out of my mind

Out of my mind

Draper, Sharon M. (Sharon Mills), author
2010

Over 1.5 million people have read the #1 New York Times bestseller Out of My Mind and discovered the brilliant mind of Melody Brooks.

Out of My Mind spent two years on the New York Times bestseller list!

"If there's one book teens and parents (and everyone else) should read this year, Out of My Mind should be it." -- Denver Post
"A gutsy, candid, and compelling story. It speaks volumes." -- School Library Journal (starred review)
"Unflinching and realistic." -- Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
"Uplifting...This moving novel will makes activists of us all." -- Booklist (starred review)

From multiple award-winning author Sharon Draper comes a story that will forever change how we all look at anyone with a disability, perfect for fans of RJ Palacio's Wonder .

Eleven-year-old Melody is not like most people. She can't walk. She can't talk. She can't write. All because she has cerebral palsy. But she also has a photographic memory; she can remember every detail of everything she has ever experienced. She's the smartest kid in her whole school, but NO ONE knows it. Most people--her teachers, her doctors, her classmates--dismiss her as mentally challenged because she can't tell them otherwise. But Melody refuses to be defined by her disability. And she's determined to let everyone know it...somehow.

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Skinnybones

Skinnybones

Park, Barbara
1997

If you thought Junie B. Jones was FUNNY--catch more laughs from New York Times bestselling author Barbara Park with Skinnybones ! Just right for fans of Diary of a Wimpy Kid and I Funny, Skinnybones has been a kid and teacher favorite for almost thirty years and has sold over 1 MILLION copies!

Play ball? Alex Frankovitch is the smallest, second-worst kid on his team. But he has a MAJOR-LEAGUE-sized mouth. And it gets him into MAJOR-LEAGUE trouble! Even Alex knows he's gone too far when he brags his way into a pitching contest with T.J. Stoner, the best player--and BIGGEST jerk--in the whole school (and maybe the whole world!). Can Alex talk his way out this mess? Or is he in for the GRAND SLAM of all humiliations? Find out in the award-winning, laugh-out-loud novel from the New York Times bestselling author of Junie B. Jones!

"Park is one of the funniest writers around. Skinnybones equals tickled funnybones." -- Booklist

"Hilarious! Even if you don't know center field from first base this story will keep you laughing." -- Children's Book Review Service

"Park writes...in a way that touches reality, but makes the reader double over with laughter." -- Chicago Sun-Times

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Stella brings the family

Stella brings the family

Schiffer, Miriam B., author
2015

Stella's class is having a Mother's Day celebration, but what's a girl with two daddies to do? It's not that she doesn't have someone to help her with her homework or tuck her in at night. Stella has her Papa and Daddy who take care of her, and a whole gaggle of other loved ones who make her feel special and supported every day. She just doesn't have a mom to invite to the party. Fortunately Stella finds a unique solution to her party problem in this sweet story about love, acceptance, and the true meaning of family.

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The story I'll tell

The story I'll tell

Ling, Nancy Tupper, author
2015

Beautifully illustrated by Jessica Lanan, The Story I'll Tell is a gentle and moving story of adoption and parental love, taking the form of answers to a young child's question to his mother: Where did I come from?' Each lyrical and fantastic origin tale contains a kernel of truth that pieces together the baby's journey across a wide ocean into his new mother's arms. This picturebook is sure to touch the hearts of readers everywhere, no matter how they came to be part of their family.'

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Up the mountain path

Up the mountain path

Dubuc, Marianne, 1980- author, illustrator
2018

Mrs. Badger, an avid collector and naturalist, takes a weekly journey up to Sugarloaf Peak, greeting her friends on the way and sharing her discoveries with them. One day she meets Lulu, a very small cat, who wants to go with her to the top of the mountain. On the way, Lulu learns to take care of the natural world, help those in need, and listen to her intuition. Rich in wisdom and beautifully illustrated, Up the Mountain Path offers a profound story full of lessons about love, generosity, and following one's heart.

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Wonder

Wonder

Palacio, R. J., author
2017

Millions of people have read the #1 New York Times bestseller WONDER and fallen in love with Auggie Pullman, an ordinary boy with an extraordinary face.

The book that inspired the Choose Kind movement, a major motion picture, and the upcoming, critically acclaimed graphic novel White Bird - on sale 10/1/2019!

I won't describe what I look like. Whatever you're thinking, it's probably worse.

August Pullman was born with a facial difference that, up until now, has prevented him from going to a mainstream school. Starting 5th grade at Beecher Prep, he wants nothing more than to be treated as an ordinary kid--but his new classmates can't get past Auggie's extraordinary face. WONDER , now a #1 New York Times bestseller and included on the Texas Bluebonnet Award master list, begins from Auggie's point of view, but soon switches to include his classmates, his sister, her boyfriend, and others. These perspectives converge in a portrait of one community's struggle with empathy, compassion, and acceptance.

"Wonder is the best kids' book of the year," said Emily Bazelon, senior editor at Slate.com and author of Sticks and Stones: Defeating the Culture of Bullying and Rediscovering the Power of Character and Empathy . In a world where bullying among young people is an epidemic, this is a refreshing new narrative full of heart and hope. R.J. Palacio has called her debut novel "a meditation on kindness" --indeed, every reader will come away with a greater appreciation for the simple courage of friendship. Auggie is a hero to root for, a diamond in the rough who proves that you can't blend in when you were born to stand out.

Join the conversation: #thewonderofwonder, #choosekind

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A wrinkle in time

A wrinkle in time

L'Engle, Madeleine
2007

Madeleine L'Engle's ground-breaking science fiction and fantasy classic, soon to be a major motion picture.

It was a dark and stormy night; Meg Murry, her small brother Charles Wallace, and her mother had come down to the kitchen for a midnight snack when they were upset by the arrival of a most disturbing stranger.

"Wild nights are my glory," the unearthly stranger told them. "I just got caught in a downdraft and blown off course. Let me sit down for a moment, and then I'll be on my way. Speaking of ways, by the way, there is such a thing as a tesseract."

A tesseract (in case the reader doesn't know) is a wrinkle in time. To tell more would rob the reader of the enjoyment of Miss L'Engle's unusual book. A Wrinkle in Time , winner of the Newbery Medal in 1963, is the story of the adventures in space and time of Meg, Charles Wallace, and Calvin O'Keefe (athlete, student, and one of the most popular boys in high school). They are in search of Meg's father, a scientist who disappeared while engaged in secret work for the government on the tesseract problem.

A Wrinkle in Time is the winner of the 1963 Newbery Medal. It is the first book in The Time Quintet, which consists of A Wrinkle in Time, A Wind in the Door, A Swiftly Tilting Planet, Many Waters , and An Acceptable Time .

A Wrinkle in Time is soon to be a movie from Disney, directed by Ava DuVernay, starring Storm Reid, Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon and Mindy Kaling.

This title has Common Core connections.

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