Lou is used to small spaces. She shares a room with her mother in her grandmother's house in San Francisco. It's even more cramped when her extended family comes to visit. She loves them all, but longs for a space of her own. She's obsessed with tiny houses and has spent many hours researching their clever designs. When her mother gets a job offer in Washington state, Lou is convinced that if she can build her tiny house, it will convince her mother to stay. Will she be able to rally her friends to the cause? Or will she have to leave everyone she loves behind?
This is a charming story full of heart and endearing characters. Lou has a great community of friends and family.
Erica's Picks The House that Lou Built by Mae Respicio
What would you do if your family didn't have enough to eat? If they didn't have access to running water or electricity? What if you had no money to fix any of it? If you're anything like William, then you'd head to the library! In this true story, William describes how he combined knowledge gained from studying library books with scrap metal and junk to make a windmill that changed his life forever.
This book is absolutely fascinating. Of course as a librarian I'm a sucker for any story about the transformative powers of libraries. William is remarkable and hearing his story in his own words was incredibly moving. Added morals about STEM, recycling, and life in Africa make this an ideal fit for classroom reading. It's an engaging read for students on their own too.
The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind (Young Readers Edition) by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer
Erica's Picks 4th - 8th grade Tags: Biography, Makers, Nonfiction, People of Color, Social Justice
When Maisie's father gave her the middle name 'Danger' he thought he was being funny. He didn't know how apt it would turn out to be. Maisie has wanted to go to astronaut camp ever since she was a little girl, so when she sees the contest on her cereal box she figures that it couldn't hurt to apply. She is shocked to win and even more so when she's selected to be part of an elite group that gets to visit the space elevator built by the eccentric genius who runs the camp. But what starts as a prize loses its luster when things go horribly wrong. All of their lives will be changed forever as they come to grips with new abilities and try to decide who, if anyone, they can trust.
Aliens, superheroes, cool gadgets, and epic fight scenes: this book has it all. The characters are diverse and resist easy categorization into good and evil. If you’re looking for a sci-fi thriller with a super hero angle, look no further.
Dangerous by Shannon Hale
Erica's Picks 7th -8th Grade Tags: Family life, Fast Paced, Makers, People of Color, Romance, Science Fiction
Do you like to get your clothes from the mall or would you rather find something vintage in a thrift shop? It's an easy choice for Will. She prefers things with a bit of history to them. She lives in an antique shop with her aunt and a dog passed down from her grandfather. Even her name is second-hand, from her great-great-grandmother Wilhelmina. But Will doesn't mind. The antiques give her plenty of opportunity to indulge in her hobby of making lamps from objects ranging from teacups to parasols. Summer is almost over and she's determined to make the last few weeks count. But when a storm comes that knocks out power to the town, everything changes.
The best thing about this comic are the characters. Will has a wonderful old soul, Autumn puts on great puppet shows and Noel likes to test out new cookie recipes. The details are wonderful from the little references to Doctor Who to the fact that the gutters and edges of the pages during the blackout are black so you can see the effect of the storm even on the closed book. The book has a DIY mentality and the characters put on a very creative arts carnival. I'd give this to anyone looking for a realistic, character-driven comic. Fans of Gulledge's other comic (Page by Paige) or the comics of Raina Telgemeier will be sure to enjoy this one.
Will & Whit by Laura Lee Gulledge
Erica's Picks 4th - 8th Grade Tags: Character Driven, Comics, Contemporary Fiction, Friendship, Issues Fiction, Makers, People of Color, Summer Vacation