Author Interview with Melissa Hart

Solo Hahn is uprooted from his friends and favorite pastime—surfing—when his family abruptly moves from the California coast to a trailer in the woods in Oregon. His best friend in Oregon (other than the Down syndrome neighbor boy) is his new kitten. When an owl kills the kitten, Solo tries to shoot the owl, earning himself the label of “at-risk Read More …

Author Interview with Karen Harrington

Wayne Kovok survives a plane crash on the way home from his uncle’s funeral. When he wakes up at the hospital, he has a long line of stitches on his face, a missing eyebrow, and no voice. Before the accident, Wayne kept up a steady stream of trivia to fill any awkward silences, but now that isn’t possible. And awkward Read More …

Booktalk for LINCOLN’S GRAVE ROBBERS by Steve Sheinkin

During the Civil War, the U.S. Treasury started printing paper money—and by 1864, half of the paper money in circulation was fake, produced by counterfeiters, or “coney” men as the U.S. government agents called them. The fake money was causing serious problems for the country’s economic system. It was so bad, the government created the U.S. Secret Service to lead Read More …

Best of 2016 Booktalks

The end of the year is approaching, and in the spirit of best-books-of-the-year lists, I’ve gathered together 16 standout titles from my school booktalks in 2016. Out of the 75 titles that I shared with upper elementary and middle school classrooms this year, these are the titles that students were most often clamoring to read. It’s not surprising to find thrillers by Gordon Korman and Margaret Peterson Haddix on a list Read More …