July 14

Fighting the FOMO: Ten Ways to Make the Most of Your Local Book Festival (Without Breaking the Bank) by Oona Marie Abrams

I consider myself lucky to live in New Jersey — really! When my parents relocated here from Illinois in 1994, it was quite the culture shock, but I’ve embraced the Garden State enough to call myself a Jersey Girl (Exit 163!) and now raise my own family here. One of the benefits of living in […]

July 11

Captain Superlative by J. S. Puller – Review by Jaymie Dieterle

Captain Superlative has taken Dearwood Park Middle School by storm with her swimsuit-and-tights costume, blue rubber gloves, wig, facemask and cape. You can’t miss her. She seems to know everyone and see everything. She helps injured kids get around the school, distributes peppermints to all the kids who have tests to take, and creates study […]

July 10

The Hundred Dresses, A Little Book with a Long Impact by Lila Quintero Weaver

Certain children’s books reach us right where we live and hold us for a lifetime. The Hundred Dresses by Eleanor Estes, which was a Newbery Honor Book in 1945, was already a dusty classic when it stole my heart in the mid-1960s. Even so, it’s one book I can’t speak about dispassionately—not when it shines […]

July 09

So What Are You Reading? by Cindy Minnich

It’s a Monday morning that looks a lot like most of my summer Monday mornings. I’m sitting here with a cup of coffee, looking at my phone. Most mornings, admittedly, I’m either reading a book on it or scrolling through social media to see what everyone else was up to last night after I went […]

July 07

10 Musical Middle Grade Novels to Rock Readers’ Worlds by Lisa Jenn Bigelow

My middle grade years were immersed in music. I sang in the choir. I learned to play piano. I discovered my parents’ record collection, Top 40 radio, and cassingles. There was joy in lifting my voice, coaxing chords from the keys. There was comfort in hearing pop singers magically echo my deepest feelings. If life […]

July 04

The Magic of Melwick Orchard by Rebecca Caprara – Review by Dana Dykiel

When I was younger, I was confused by the phrase wait until you get into the real world. It seemed to imply, somehow, that my world wasn’t real. Evidently, I knew adults had jobs, romances, different responsibilities – but were these experiences larger, or more important than my own? Did adults feel joy and sadness […]

July 03


The coolest thing happened when I was visiting a school in Dallas earlier this year. I was in between presentations, having a conversation with the librarian in the school library, when the doors burst open and a group of kids ran in. They made a beeline for a table where they huddled around a small […]

July 02

Setting Them Up For A Lifetime Of Reading by Clare Landrigan

Do I have a library card? I stop typing, hit save, and turn around to face my son. I know I had one, but I don’t know where it is or if it is still active. Why do you ask? I want to reread the Harry Potter books this summer.  I thought I could get […]

June 30

Reading Promotion: Transforming the Reading Culture of a K-8 Building by Allison Stout and Jill Ramig

In the fall of 2016, we were inspired by Jillian Heise and the #classroombookaday program (see Jillian’s July 3, 2017 Nerdy Book Club post “#classroombookaday & the Power of Shared [Picture Book] Stories”).  We knew we wanted to bring the idea to Remington Traditional School.  We recruited two other non-classroom teachers to adopt a room […]

June 28


Book Jacket Blurb From the Publisher: At seventeen, Mei should be in high school, but skipping fourth grade was part of her parents’ master plan. Now a freshman at MIT, she is on track to fulfill the rest of this predetermined future: become a doctor, marry a preapproved Taiwanese Ivy Leaguer, produce a litter of […]