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2015 6-8 Summer Reading List   Tags: middle school, summer reading  

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6-8 Fiction

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An Infidel in Paradise - S. J. Laidlaw
Call Number: TEEN F LAID
ISBN: 1770493042
Publication Date: 2013-02-12
Set in Pakistan, An Infidel in Paradise follows the story of a teen girl living with her mother and siblings in a diplomatic compound. As if getting used to another new country and set of customs and friends isn't enough, she must also cope with an increasingly tense political situation that becomes dangerous with alarming speed. Her life and those of her sister and brother depend on her resourcefulness and the unexpected help of an enigmatic Muslim classmate.

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I Am a Genius of Unspeakable Evil and I Want to Be Your Class President - Josh Lieb
Call Number: TEEN F LIEB
ISBN: 1595143548
Publication Date: 2010-09-07
When a provocation from his dad irks twelve-yearold evil genius Oliver Watson, he'll have to put his plans for world domination on hold in order to beat the pants off the competition and win the middle school election!

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A Mango-Shaped Space - Wendy Mass
Call Number: TEEN F MASS
ISBN: 0316058254
Publication Date: 2005-10-19
Mia Winchell has synesthesia, the mingling of perceptions whereby a person can see sounds, smell colors, or taste shapes. Forced to reveal her condition, she must look to herself to develop an understanding and appreciation of her gift in this coming-of-age novel.

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Fallout - Todd Strasser
Call Number: TEEN F STRA
ISBN: 0763676764
Publication Date: 2015-05-12
What if the bomb had actually been dropped? What if your family was the only one with a shelter? In the summer of 1962, the possibility of nuclear war is all anyone talks about. But Scott’s dad is the only one in the neighborhood who actually prepares for the worst. As the neighbors scoff, he builds a bomb shelter to hold his family and stocks it with just enough supplies to keep the four of them alive for two critical weeks. In the middle of the night in late October, when the unthinkable happens, those same neighbors force their way into the shelter before Scott’s dad can shut the door. With not enough room, not enough food, and not enough air, life inside the shelter is filthy, physically draining, and emotionally fraught. But even worse is the question of what will — and won’t — remain when the door is opened again. Internationally best-selling author Todd Strasser has written his most impressive and personal novel to date, ruthlessly yet sensitively exploring the terrifying what-ifs of one of the most explosive moments in human history.

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The Age of Miracles - Karen Thompson Walker
Call Number: F WALK
ISBN: 0812982940
Publication Date: 2013-01-15
NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY People ∙ O: The Oprah Magazine ∙ Financial Times ∙ Kansas City Star ∙ BookPage ∙ Kirkus Reviews ∙ Publishers Weekly ∙ Booklist   With a voice as distinctive and original as that of The Lovely Bones, and for the fans of the speculative fiction of Margaret Atwood, Karen Thompson Walker's The Age of Miracles is a luminous and unforgettable debut novel about coming of age set against the backdrop of an utterly altered world.   NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER   "Maybe everything that happened to me and to my family had nothing at all to do with the slowing. It's possible, I guess. But I doubt it. I doubt it very much."   Spellbinding, haunting, The Age of Miracles is a beautiful novel of catastrophe and survival, growth and change, the story of Julia and her family as they struggle to live in an extraordinary time. On an ordinary Saturday, Julia awakes to discover that something has happened to the rotation of the earth. The days and nights are growing longer and longer, gravity is affected, the birds, the tides, human behavior and cosmic rhythms are thrown into disarray. In a world of danger and loss, Julia faces surprising developments in herself, and her personal world--divisions widening between her parents, strange behavior by Hannah and other friends, the vulnerability of first love, a sense of isolation, and a rebellious new strength. With crystalline prose and the indelible magic of a born storyteller, Karen Thompson Walker gives us a breathtaking story of people finding ways to go on, in an ever-evolving world.   Praise for The Age of Miracles   "A stunner."--Justin Cronin   "A genuinely moving tale that mixes the real and surreal, the ordinary and the extraordinary, with impressive fluency and flair."--Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times   "Gripping drama . . . flawlessly written; it could be the most assured debut by an American writer since Jennifer Egan's Emerald City."--The Denver Post   "If you begin this book, you'll be loath to set it down until you've reached its end."--San Francisco Chronicle   "Provides solace with its wisdom, compassion, and elegance."--Curtis Sittenfeld   Don't miss the exclusive conversation between Karen Thompson Walker and Karen Russell at the back of the book.

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The Green Glass Sea - Ellen Klages
Call Number: jF KLAG
ISBN: 0142411493
Publication Date: 2008-05-01
A backlist gem gets a brand-new look! It's 1943, and eleven-year-old Dewey Kerrigan is en route to New Mexico to live with her mathematician father. Soon she arrives at a town that, officially, doesn't exist. It is called Los Alamos, and it is abuzz with activity, as scientists and mathematicians from all over America and Europe work on the biggest secret of all--"the gadget." None of them--not J. Robert Oppenheimer, the director of the Manhattan Project; not the mathematicians and scientists; and least of all, Dewey--know how much "the gadget" is about to change their lives.

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The Sittin' Up - Shelia P. Moses
Call Number: jF MOSE
ISBN: 0147514290
Publication Date: 2015-01-22
When Mr. Bro. Wiley, Bean's adopted grandfather and the last slave man around, dies in the summer of 1940, Bean and his very best friend Pole are some kind of hurt. Everyone in the Low Meadows is. Despite their grief, they are proud and excited to be included in their very first Sittin' Up--a wake for the dead. Bean and Pole know this special week will be one to remember, especially if the coming storm has its way and riles up Ole River enough to flood the Low Meadows right in the middle of Mr. Bro. Wiley's Sittin' Up. Shelia P. Moses tells her most charming story yet. Laced with humor and a lot of heart, this is an affecting, fun tale from a storytelling master.

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When You Reach Me - Rebecca Stead
Call Number: jF STEA
ISBN: 0375850864
Publication Date: 2010-12-28
This remarkable novel holds a fantastic puzzle at its heart. By sixth grade, Miranda and her best friend, Sal, know how to navigate their New York City neighborhood. They know where it's safe to go, and they know who to avoid. Like the crazy guy on the corner. But things start to unravel. Sal gets punched by a kid on the street for what seems like no reason, and he shuts Miranda out of his life. The apartment key that Miranda's mom keeps hidden for emergencies is stolen. And then a mysterious note arrives, scrawled on a tiny slip of paper. The notes keep coming, and Miranda slowly realizes that whoever is leaving them knows things no one should know. Each message brings her closer to believing that only she can prevent a tragic death. Until the final note makes her think she's too late.

 

6-8 Nonfiction

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Breaker Boys - Michael Burgan
Call Number: j331.3109 BURG
ISBN: 0756545102
Publication Date: 2011-07-01
Little boys, some as young as 6, spent their long days, not playing or studying, but sorting coal in dusty, loud, and dangerous conditions. Many of these breaker boys worked 10 hours a day, six days a week all for as little as 45 cents a day. Child labor was common in the United States in the 19th century. It took the compelling, heart breaking photographs of Lewis Hine and others to bring the harsh working conditions to light. Hine and his fellow Progressives wanted to end child labor. He knew photography would reveal the truth and teach and change the world. With his camera Hine showed people what life was like for immigrants, the poor, and the children working in mines, factories, and mills. In the words of an historian, the more than 7,000 photos Hine took of American children at work aroused public sentiment against child labor in a way that no printed page or public lecture could.

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Eruption! - Elizabeth Rusch; Tom Uhlman (Illustrator)
Call Number: j363.3495 RUSC
ISBN: 0547503504
Publication Date: 2013-06-18
“At 11:35 p.m., as Radio Armero played cheerful music, a towering wave of mud and rocks bulldozed through the village, roaring like a squadron of fighter jets.” Twenty-three thousand people died in the 1985 eruption of Colombia’s Nevado del Ruiz. Today, more than one billion people worldwide live in volcanic danger zones. In this riveting nonfiction book—filled with spectacular photographs and sidebars—Rusch reveals the perilous, adrenaline-fueled, life-saving work of an international volcano crisis team (VDAP) and the sleeping giants they study, from Colombia to the Philippines, from Chile to Indonesia.

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Sugar Changed the World - Marc Aronson; Marina Tamar Budhos
Call Number: j664.109 ARON
ISBN: 0618574921
Publication Date: 2010-11-15
When this award-winning husband-and-wife team discovered that they each had sugar in their family history, they were inspired to trace the globe-spanning story of the sweet substance and to seek out the voices of those who led bitter sugar lives. The trail ran like a bright band from religious ceremonies in India to Europe’s Middle Ages, then on to Columbus, who brought the first cane cuttings to the Americas. Sugar was the substance that drove the bloody slave trade and caused the loss of countless lives but it also planted the seeds of revolution that led to freedom in the American colonies, Haiti, and France. With songs, oral histories, maps, and over 80 archival illustrations, here is the story of how one product allows us to see the grand currents of world history in new ways. Time line, source notes, bibliography, index.

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Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales - Nathan Hale
Call Number: j940.3 HALE
ISBN: 1419708082
Publication Date: 2014-05-13
World War I set the tone for the 20th century and introduced a new type of warfare: global, mechanical, and brutal. Nathan Hale has gathered some of the most fascinating true-life tales from the war and given them his inimitable Hazardous Tales twist. Easy to understand, funny, informative, and lively, this series is the best way to be introduced to some of the most well-known battles (and little-known secrets) of the infamous war. Praise for Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales "Students bored to death by textbook descriptions of WWI battle maneuvers should be engaged by this entertaining, educational glimpse at world history." --Booklist "A mixture of textbook and slapstick, this essential read makes history come alive in a way that is relevant to modern-day life and kids." --School Library Journal nbsp;

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Bomb - Steve Sheinkin
Call Number: j940.3 HALE
ISBN: 1596434872
Publication Date: 2012-09-04
In December of 1938, a chemist in a German laboratory made a shocking discovery: When placed next to radioactive material, a Uranium atom split in two. That simple discovery launched a scientific race that spanned 3 continents. In Great Britain and the United States, Soviet spies worked their way into the scientific community; in Norway, a commando force slipped behind enemy lines to attack German heavy-water manufacturing; and deep in the desert, one brilliant group of scientists was hidden away at a remote site at Los Alamos. This is the story of the plotting, the risk-taking, the deceit, and genius that created the world's most formidable weapon. This is the story of the atomic bomb. Bomb is a 2012 National Book Awards finalist for Young People's Literature. Bomb is a 2012 Washington Post Best Kids Books of the Year title. Bomb is a 2013 Newbery Honor book.

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Flesh and Blood So Cheap: the Triangle Fire and Its Legacy - Albert Marrin
Call Number: j974.7104 MARR
ISBN: 0553499351
Publication Date: 2015-02-10
On March 25, 1911, the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory in New York City burst into flames.a The factory was crowded.a The doors were locked to ensure workers stay inside.a One hundred forty-six people-mostly women-perished; it was one of the most lethal workplace fires in American history until September 11, 2001. But the story of the fire is not the story of one accidental moment in time.a It is a story of immigration and hard work to make it in a new country, as Italians and Jews and others traveled to America to find a better life.a It is the story of poor working conditions and greedy bosses, as garment workers discovered the endless sacrifices required to make ends meet.a It is the story of unimaginable, but avoidable, disaster.a And it the story of the unquenchable pride and activism of fearless immigrants and women who stood up to business, got America on their side, and finally changed working conditions for our entire nation, initiating radical new laws we take for granted today. With Flesh and Blood So Cheap, Albert Marrin has crafted a gripping, nuanced, and poignant account of one of America's defining tragedies.

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Brown Girl Dreaming - Jacqueline Woodson
Call Number: jB WOOD
ISBN: 0399252517
Publication Date: 2014-08-28
National Book Award Winner Jacqueline Woodson, one of today's finest writers, tells the moving story of her childhood in mesmerizing verse. Raised in South Carolina and New York, Woodson always felt halfway home in each place. In vivid poems, she shares what it was like to grow up as an African American in the 1960s and 1970s, living with the remnants of Jim Crow and her growing awareness of the Civil Rights movement. Touching and powerful, each poem is both accessible and emotionally charged, each line a glimpse into a child's soul as she searches for her place in the world. Woodson's eloquent poetry also reflects the joy of finding her voice through writing stories, despite the fact that she struggled with reading as a child. Her love of stories inspired her and stayed with her, creating the first sparks of the gifted writer she was to become. Praise for Jacqueline Woodson: Ms. Woodson writes with a sure understanding of the thoughts of young people, offering a poetic, eloquent narrative that is not simply a story . . . but a mature exploration of grown-up issues and self-discovery.The New York Times Book Review

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The Notorious Benedict Arnold - Steve Sheinkin
Call Number: jB YOUS
ISBN: 1250024609
Publication Date: 2013-02-19
Most people know that Benedict Arnold was America's first, most notorious traitor. Few know that he was also one of its greatest Revolutionary War heroes. Steve Sheinkin's accessible biography, The Notorious Benedict Arnold, introduces young readers to the real Arnold: reckless, heroic, and driven. Packed with first-person accounts, astonishing American Revolution battle scenes, and surprising twists, this is a gripping and true adventure tale from history.

 

Graphic Novels

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Anya's Ghost - Vera Brosgol (Illustrator)
Call Number: TEEN GN BROS
ISBN: 1596435526
Publication Date: 2011-06-07
Anya could really use a friend. But her new BFF isn’t kidding about the “Forever” part . . .Of all the things Anya expected to find atthe bottom of an old well, a new friend was not one of them. Especially not a new friend who’s been dead for a century.Falling down a well is bad enough, but Anya’s normal life might actually be worse. She’s embarrassed by her family, self-conscious about her body, and she’s pretty much given up on fitting in at school. A new friend—even a ghost—is just what she needs.Or so she thinks. Spooky, sardonic, and secretly sincere,Anya’s Ghostis a wonderfully entertaining debut graphic novel from author/artist Vera Brosgol.   Anya's Ghost is a 2011Kirkus Best Teen Books of the Year title. One ofSchool Library Journal’s Best Fiction Books of 2011. One ofHorn Book’s Best Fiction Books of 2011. Winner of the 2012 Eisner Award for Best Publication for Young Adults (Ages 12-17)

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Yummy - G. Neri; Randy DuBurke
Call Number: TEEN GN NERI
ISBN: 1584302674
Publication Date: 2010-08-01
A graphic novel based on the life and death of Robert 'Yummy' Sandifer, an 11-year-old gang member from Chicago's Southside who was killed by his own gang. 11-year-old Roger is trying to make sense of his classmate Yummy's death, but first he has to make sense of Yummy's life. Was he some sort of monster, or just another kid? A compelling graphic dramatisation based on true events, this gritty exploration of youth gang life will prompt teen readers to question their own understandings of good and bad, right and wrong.

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This One Summer - Mariko Tamaki; Jillian Tamaki (Illustrator)
Call Number: TEEN GN TAMA
ISBN: 159643774X
Publication Date: 2014-05-06
A 2015 Caldecott Honor Book A 2015 Michael L. Printz Honor Book Every summer, Rose goes with her mom and dad to a lake house in Awago Beach. It's their getaway, their refuge. Rosie's friend Windy is always there, too, like the little sister she never had. But this summer is different. Rose's mom and dad won't stop fighting, and when Rose and Windy seek a distraction from the drama, they find themselves with a whole new set of problems. One of the local teens - just a couple of years older than Rose and Windy - is caught up in something bad... Something life threatening. It's a summer of secrets, and sorrow, and growing up, and it's a good thing Rose and Windy have each other. This One Summer is a tremendously exciting new teen graphic novel from two creators with true literary clout. Cousins Mariko and Jillian Tamaki, the team behind Skim, have collaborated on this gorgeous, heartbreaking, and ultimately hopeful story about a girl on the cusp of childhood - a story of renewal and revelation.

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Smile - Raina Telgemeier
Call Number: jGN TELG
ISBN: 0545132061
Publication Date: 2010-02-01
From the artist of The Baby-sitters Club Graphix comes this humorous and charming true story! Eleven-year-old Raina just wants to be a normal sixth grader. But one night after a trip-and-fall mishap, she injures her two front teeth, and what follows is a long and frustrating journey with on-again, off-again braces, corrective surgery, embarrassing headgear, and even a retainer with fake teeth attached. And on top of all that, there's still more to deal with: a major earthquake, boy confusion, and friends who turn out to be not so friendly. This coming-of-age true story is sure to resonate with anyone who has ever been in middle school, and especially those who have had a bit of their own dental drama.

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