Reviews written by Kristie Lowry, Promotions Manager

154 results - showing 1 - 15
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Ordering
August 17, 2019
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Kids Fiction
A soothing march to bedtime

Five elephants march along the pages of Kevin Henkes's picture book, A PARADE OF ELEPHANTS. As they make their way through their day, they offer an opportunity for counting, exploring opposites, and easing one's way into bedtime. The illustrations are simple with a pastel palette, and the...

August 17, 2019
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Kids Fiction
A brilliant book on grief

In THE ROUGH PATCH, Evan's best friend is his dog, and they do everything together. Author and illustrator Brian Lies details their fun and friendship with bright and cheerful scenes throughout the first part of the book. The joy Evan and his dog share in each other is evident as...

August 16, 2019
Overall rating 
 
3.3
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Young Adult Fiction
A nice book for tweens

Esme feels alone. Her much-loved grandfather died, her dad deserted the family, her mom has mentally checked out, and her grandmother is a hard woman who doesn't have time for the kindness Esme craves. When Esme discovers dinosaur bones coming up out of the dirt...

August 11, 2019
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Young Adult Fiction
How do you move on after a devastating event?

Most books about a school shooting would start with the horrific event at the center of story, but EVERY MOMENT AFTER takes place 11 years after a gunman kills sixteen first graders and their principal at the high school graduation for the class. Cole Hewitt and Matt Simpson are two...

August 07, 2019
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Kids Fiction
More fun and adventure with Pine and Boof

Pine the porcupine and Boof the bear became friends in the first book of this series, PINE & BOOF: THE LUCKY LEAF by author and illustrator Ross Burach, and they're back for more fun and adventure in PINE & BOOF BLAST OFF. BLAST OFF begins with...

August 07, 2019
Overall rating 
 
3.5
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
3.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
4.0
A sweet and silly bedtime story

I'LL LOVE YOU TILL THE COWS COME HOME is a silly and sweet take on the children's book trope of unconditional love. It begins with the declaration that the love will last until the cows come home--from Mars--and it continues with yaks in a fire truck (or Cadillac), sheep on...

August 01, 2019
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
A gentle exploration of what it is to be human

I AM HUMAN is a picture book written by Susan Verde and illustrated by Peter Reynolds that gently explores what it is to be human--both the good and the bad--and ways to learn and grow as a result of challenges and mistakes. The text is comprised of simple sentences, but...

June 10, 2019 (Updated: June 10, 2019)
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)  
 
5.0
Learning Value 
 
5.0
Hitler's Germany -- an Olympic Perspective

The Summer Olympics will take place again in July 2020, and all eyes will turn to Tokyo, Japan as they host the world and spotlight their country and their culture. The United States will send twelve of its best basketball players to compete in the games, and the U.S....

May 19, 2019
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Kids Fiction
A terrific middle grades book

Nine-year-old Astrid is the only child in her Norwegian village, and she's called the little thunderbolt by the adults living in Glimmerdal. The nickname is appropriate; Astrid is a dynamo and she barrels through life with exuberance and heart. Astrid's best friend is Gunnvald--a 70-something neighbor who...

April 23, 2019
Overall rating 
 
3.3
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
3.0
Young Adult Fiction
Sometimes grief makes you do crazy things ...

Since they were little, Lizzie Porter and Emily Lonergan were inseparable and best friends. Now Emily is almost sixteen-years-old, and she's had to learn how to live life without that friendship after Lizzie's death from cancer a year before. That adjustment has been hard on her, and Lizzie's family has...

March 10, 2019
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Young Adult Fiction
Road Trip Therapy!

Angie is about to start sophomore year, and she's miserable. She made it through 9th grade on her second go, but her girlfriend has moved away, her best friend has been emotionally distant, the guy who has been bullying her has increased his efforts, and Angie is still trying to...

February 11, 2019
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Young Adult Fiction
An honest look at teen alocholism/addiction

Seventeen-year-old Harley has been dating Mike for a couple of years, and being his girlfriend gives her a status and comfort level that she's afraid to be without--even though there's a lot about Mike that she doesn't like. His drinking is the biggest issue in their relationship, and when Mike...

December 30, 2018
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
N/A
Kids Fiction
Easy to read with a lot of depth

Eleven-year-old Tash has been carted off to camp against her will, and she'll be there for a month while her uncle/foster father Kevin visits New Zealand. Tash would have preferred to stay with their elderly neighbor, Cap'n Jackie. Cap'n Jackie tells awesome stories about Draphin (an imaginary pet dolphin-dragon), and...

December 17, 2018
Overall rating 
 
3.0
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
3.0
Both Terrifying and Fun!

It's 1984 and Laura Ratliff is a high school student with issues beyond a typical sixteen-year-old. Her mom and her mom's new husband have been the talk of the town thanks to their VERY public extra-marital affair--compounded by the fact that the new husband is one of the few black...

December 13, 2018
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Young Adult Fiction
Devastating, but Beautiful

As MOTHER TONGUE by Julie Mayhew begins, eighteen-year-old Darya envisions the bits of freedom she'll enjoy once her little sister, Nika, finally starts school. Darya has been Nika's primary caregiver since she was brought home from the hospital--their mother stayed in the hospital longer, and when their mom returned to...

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