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MADreads for Kids

Book reviews for children by library staff and guest contributors

Art comes to life

Cover of Anna at the Art Museum
A review of Anna at the Art Museum by Hazel Hutchins
Anna is BORED. The museum is full of stuffy art, and all the fun things one can do to stay occupied - like climbing on the kids stuff, and eating one's afternoon snack - are strictly forbidden and enforced by the museum security guard. But then Anna is let in on a little secret at the museum, and everything changes. 
 
September 21, 2018

Wisconsin Book Festival

Pieces of Her book cover
Lineup Announced

The Wisconsin Book Festival released its 2018 festival schedule on August 21. The four-day festival will take place October 11-14, 2018, in and around Madison Public Library’s Central Library in downtown Madison, Wisconsin. The festival will feature more than 60 events over four days with plenty of opportunities to meet authors, discover new books or favorite writers, and have books signed. See the full festival lineup at wisconsinbookfestival.org.

August 24, 2018

Free Access to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Cover of Harry Potter and the Sorce
A review of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J. K. Rowling

Everyone’s favorite boy wizard is turning twenty this year! Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone first hit shelves in 1997, sparking a cultural phenomenon that’s still going strong. To celebrate, Overdrive is offering free access to the Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone ebook between August 27 and September 10.  Enjoy reconnecting with favorite characters or take the opportunity to introduce a new generation to the series.

August 23, 2018

Nurturing friendships and traditions

Cover of The Tea Dragon Society
A review of The Tea Dragon Society by Katie O'Neill

A young blacksmith's apprentice named Greta discovers a lost tea dragon at the market and uncovers the forgotten world of the Tea Dragon Society. The book follows a year of seasons starting with spring and the developing friendships between Greta, the tea dragon masters, Hesekiel and Erik, and a mysterious and shy girl named Minette.

August 21, 2018

Ouch!

Cover of The Boo-Boos that Changed
A review of The Boo-Boos that Changed the World by Barry Wittenstein

Earlier today I cut my finger and put on a band aid. And then this book showed up on my hold shelf - coincidence? Back in 1917, a young couple is married and the wife seems to hurt herself with great frequency. I didn't really care for the descriptions of her injuries, both for the yuck factor, and rather condescending manner Josephine is talked about. But, if you can make it past that, this is a rather interesting story. The husband, Earle, has the idea to place small pieces of sterile gauze on a long piece of adhesive tape and then Josephine can put on a bandage easily by herself.

June 8, 2018

Can-Do Panda

Cover of Chengdu Can Do
A review of Chengdu Can Do Chengdu Can Do by Barney Saltzberg

Chengdu is back! Barney Saltzberg’s adorable panda from Chengdu could not, would not, fall asleep can do so many things all by himself. He can jump! Push, pull, climb, stretch, swing… but he just can’t quite reach the tasty bamboo at the top of the tree. Just like all little pandas, there are some times when Chengdu can also use a little help.

June 1, 2018

A Celebration of Girls

Cover of I Am Enough
A review of I Am Enough by Grace Byers

A beautiful picture book celebrating girls! Simple text, "Like the sun, I'm here to shine. Like the voice, I am here to sing," make the book accessible to preschool aged children. The use of similes make it something that early elementary school students will enjoy and can think of wonderful things to compare themselves to. The main character and a diverse mix of friends are shown singing, playing, studying, and even falling and getting back up again. Some of the rhymes don't quite work, but the book still has a lovely message of love, helping, and celebrating who you are.

May 18, 2018

For the young "Hamilton" fan

Cover of Sophia's war : a tale of t
A review of Sophia's war : a tale of the Revolution by Avi

Newberry Medalist, Avi, writes a gripping story of the American Revolutionary War through the eyes of Sophia Calderwood.  Sophia, a well-educated young lady, lives with her parents in British occupied New York.  Her beloved older brother is a captured soldier in the Continental Army and her parents are secretly committed to the cause of the American Patriots.  Sophia, herself an ardent Patriot, wants nothing more than to help the cause and free her brother from a horrific British prison.  She is enlisted as a spy; however, the plot she uncovers is almost too outrageous to believe!  Can Soph

May 11, 2018

Starting Over

Cover of The Ethan I was Before
A review of The Ethan I was Before by Ali Standish

Ethan and his family are getting a fresh start in the hot, coastal town of Palm Knot, Georgia, or at least they are trying to. While there's a promise of finding new friends and rebuilding family relationships, Ethan's guilt of who he was and what he did continues to haunt him. Whispered phone calls at night, family secrets and the secrets of his possible new best friend, Coralee, ultimately contribute to Ethan's understanding of the importance of remembering and forgiveness. This is a capably written story that discusses death, forgiveness, and the effects of guilt on a young mind.

May 4, 2018

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