The Curious Cat Spy Club

The Curious Cat Spy Club
by Linda Joy Singleton (Author)

Booktalk: No one at school knows that Kelsey, Becca, and Leo are secretly friends. They have nothing in common–until they rescue three kittens and form a club to help animals through volunteering, spying, and solving mysteries. In the first book of this series, Kelsey helps catch a runaway zorse (horse + zebra) with the help of another girl from school named Becca. The two are walking home when they happen upon a litter of kittens trapped in a dumpster and Leo Polanski is the only person around who can help get them out. The three unlikely friends decide to work together to help solve animal crimes with their secret club!

Snippet: I turn to run fast and far from this creepy alley but I only get a few feet before I stop again. I clearly hear mewing. Not just one mew but a chorus of shrilled, scared mews–trapped inside the dumpster.
Kittens.

Copyright © 2015 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.
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Dance Divas: Showstopper

Dance Divas: Showstopper
by Sheryl Berk (Author)

Booktalk: Anya is just getting used to being the newest member of the Dance Divas when her parents want her to move back home to L.A. to study dance “more seriously,” which means she may have to say goodbye to Divas forever. The timing couldn’t be worse. City Feet is back with a vengeance at the Smooth Moves Competition in Las Vegas. Without Anya, Miss Toni has to reshuffle the entire group number at the last minute (good thing it’s called “Deck of Cards”!). Meanwhile, mean Justine has a few tricks up her sleeve: her group dance is a magic act that promises to make all the competition disappear! Who will win? And what will happen to Anya?

Snippet:
“We’re in L.A. and you and your mother are in New Jersey. It’s not a good situation for any of us,” her father said, raising his voice. “We hoped you would be able to see and understand that.”

Copyright © 2015 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.
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The Chicago Blackhawks

The Chicago Blackhawks
by Mark Stewart (Author)

Booktalk: It’s that time again! Who will win this year’s Stanley Cup? Read about your favorite hockey team in the Team Spirit series. Here is a snippet from The Chicago Blackhawks.

Snippet: There are many ways to win a championship in the National Hockey League (NHL). Some teams depend on superstars to carry them to victory. Others overwhelm opponents with wave after wave of hardworking skaters. Then there are the unexpected champions–the teams that make fans scratch their heads and wonder: How did they do that?

Nonfiction Monday

It’s Nonfiction Monday!

Copyright © 2015 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.
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Steampunk LEGO

Steampunk LEGO
by Guy Himber (Author)

Booktalk: Grab your brass goggles and join fictional explorer Sir Herbert Jobson as he travels the world cataloguing its technological wonders for Queen Victoria.

Snippet:

It’s STEM Friday! (STEM is Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)

Copyright © 2015 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.
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A Teen Guide to Being Eco in Your Community

A Teen Guide to Being Eco in Your Community
by Cath Senker (Author)

Booktalk: Realistic and practical advice about how teens can live an eco-conscious life, right now. They can take action by themselves, with their family, or as part of a school or community group.

Snippet:
What’s in it for me?
By promoting and protecting nature, you can make the places where you live, study, and socialize more pleasant. You could help your family save money by reducing energy bills. If you can help reduce costs significantly, your parent or caregiver might reward you!

It’s STEM Friday! (STEM is Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)

Copyright © 2015 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.
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Pure Grit: How American World War II Nurses Survived Battle and Prison Camp in the Pacific

Pure Grit: How American World War II Nurses Survived Battle and Prison Camp in the Pacific
by Mary Cronk Farrell (Author)

Booktalk: In the early 1940s, young women enlisted for peacetime duty as U.S. Army nurses. But when the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941 blasted the United States into World War II, 101 American Army and Navy nurses serving in the Philippines were suddenly treating wounded and dying soldiers while bombs exploded all around them.

Snippet: When Ethel cruised into Manila Bay in July 1940, much of the world roiled with conflict. Germany had crushed most of Europe by using a new war tactic called blitzkrieg, where troops, tanks, and airplanes all attacked at once. Now Nazi leader Adolf Hitler prepared to blitzkrieg England. On the Far East, Japan was on the march. The previous month Britain had ordered the evacuation of all British women and children from Hong Kong, fearing Japan would capture the city. The only democratic powers left in the world were the United States and Great Britain.

Nonfiction Monday

It’s Nonfiction Monday!

Copyright © 2015 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.
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LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3 Discovery Book: A Beginner’s Guide to Building and Programming Robots

The LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3 Discovery Book: A Beginner’s Guide to Building and Programming Robots
by Laurens Valk (Author)

Booktalk: Begin with the basics as you build and program a simple robot to experiment with motors, sensors, and EV3 programming. Then you’ll move on to a series of increasingly sophisticated robots that will show you how to work with advanced programming techniques like data wires, variables, and custom-made programming blocks. You’ll also learn essential building techniques like how to use beams, gears, and connector blocks effectively in your own designs. More than 150 building and programming challenges throughout encourage you to think creatively and apply what you’ve learned to invent your own robots.

Master the possibilities of the EV3 set as you build and program:
*The EXPLOR3R, a wheeled vehicle that uses sensors to navigate around a room and follow lines
*The FORMULA EV3 RACE CAR, a streamlined remote-controlled race car
*ANTY, a six-legged walking creature that adapts its behavior to its surroundings
*SK3TCHBOT, a robot that lets you play games on the EV3 screen
*The SNATCH3R, a robotic arm that can autonomously find, grab, lift, and move the infrared beacon
*LAVA R3X, a humanoid robot that walks and talks

See the book trailer.

It’s STEM Friday! (STEM is Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)

Copyright © 2015 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.
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My Heart Is Laughing

My Heart Is Laughing
by Rose Lagercrantz (Author) and Eva Eriksson (Illustrator)

Booktalk: Dani’s been trying her best to stay happy ever since her best friend Ella moved away. But some girls are cruel to her . . It would all be okay if only Ella would move back.

Snippet:
“Dani, Dani,” sighed the teacher, who had overheard the conversation. “Ella is not coming back.”
“You never know,” mumbled Dani.
She was not one to give up hope, even when everything seemed hopeless.

Copyright © 2015 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.
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Rad American Women A-Z

Rad American Women A-Z
Rebels, Trailblazers, and Visionaries Who Shaped Our History . . . and Our Future!
by Kate Schatz (Author) and Miriam Klein Stahlby (Illustrator)

Booktalk: Like all A-Z books, this one illustrates the alphabet—but instead of “A is for Apple”, A is for Angela—as in Angela Davis, the iconic political activist. B is for Billie Jean King, who shattered the glass ceiling of sports; C is for Carol Burnett, who defied assumptions about women in comedy; D is for Dolores Huerta, who organized farmworkers; and E is for Ella Baker, who mentored Dr. Martin Luther King and helped shape the Civil Rights Movement.

Snippet:

B is for Billie Jean

Billie Jean King
Billie Jean King was 12 years old when she had her first tennis lesson, and she knew right away that she wanted to play tennis for the rest of her life.

Nonfiction Monday

It’s Nonfiction Monday!

Copyright © 2015 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.
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Last-But-Not-Least Lola and the Wild Chicken

Last-But-Not-Least Lola and the Wild Chicken
by Christine Pakkala (Author) and Paul Hoppe (Illustrator)

Booktalk: Lola has patched things up with frenemy Amanda Anderson, but it’s not happily ever after for these two best friends, at least not yet. Lola doesn’t want to share Amanda, especially not with Jessie, who seems to be around . . . all the time. Can there be more than two best friends? And what does a wild chicken have to do with anything? (Hint: The answer involves a class trip to a farm.)

Snippet:
“I remember that field trip,” Jack says. “The teacher brings back a big bag of chicken poop to class.”
Grandma purses her red lips tight.
I shake my head. “I don’t believe you.”

Copyright © 2015 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.
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