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Angel, Ann. Janis Joplin: Rise up Singing. New York: Amulet Books, 2010. 978-0-8109-8349-6. 120p. $19.95. Gr.9-12.
Angel, Ann. Janis Joplin : Rise Up Singing. New York :Amulet Books, 2010. 978-0-8109-8349-6. 120 p. $19.95. Gr. 9-12.
Janis Joplin’s life was one of contradictions. Supremely talented, she was stylishly flamboyant, while being extremely insecure. Angel chronicles her life with a journalist’s eye, but a fan’s enthusiasm. Without over sensationalizing, Angel presents Janis’s sexuality, drug and alcohol addiction and early death in an objective manner. Profusely illustrated with photos, this is a balanced and entertaining introduction to one of the most fascinating performers in rock and roll history.
Pat Naismith, Springfield HS (Delco)
Bartoletti, Susan Campbell. They Called Themselves the K.K.K. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2010. 978-0-6184-4033-7. 172 p.
$19.99. Gr. 7+.
Profusely illustrated with photos and drawings, supplemented with primary source material, this engaging narrative of the Ku Klux Klan is more than the history of the organization; it is the story of the founders, members, and those affected by Klan activity. First-person narratives and political and social anecdotal stories flesh out the mind set of both Klan members and minority groups. Powerful images (many from the Library of Congress archives), as well as excellent use of white space, and clear, understandable language, make this volume accessible to the most reluctant reader, while at the same time, earning praise from period scholars. Extensive supplementary material accompanies the text and photos.
Pat Naismith, Springfield HS (Delco)
Bowers, Rick. Spies of Mississippi: The True Story of the Spy Network that Tried to Destroy the Civil Rights Movement. Washington, D.C.: National Geographic Society, 2010. 978-1-42630-595-5 120p. $16.95 Gr. 6-10.
In the 1950s and 60s, the Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission was working to stop the civil rights movement. It began as a propaganda machine and morphed into a network of spies including operatives with code names like Agent X. This book reveals this little-known aspect of our country’s history in a very accessible style, including the stories of white politicians who organized a spy network as well as the African-Americans who were paid to undermine racial integration. Back matter includes a bibliography and list of quote sources, as well as copies of some of the Commission’s documents and an appendix on “what happened next” for institutions and individuals profiled in the text.
Mary Fran Torpey - Friends’ Central School
Brimmer, Larry David. Birmingham Sunday. Honesdale, PA: Calkins Creek, 2010. 978-1-59
078-613-0. 48p. $17.95. Gr. 6-8
Using photographs, FBI files, police records and newspaper headlines, the story of the bombing of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church is told with care and precision. The primary sources support the clear text, and an historical context of this tragic event is also provided. Students can learn about the leaders of the Civil Rights Movement, the lives of the girls who were killed, and up-to-date information on the criminals who were captured and punished years later. I give a strong recommendation for this user-friendly book on a difficult topic.
Wendy Hopf, Springfield Township Middle School
Civil Rights Struggl
es Around the World Se
ries. Minneapolis, MN: 21st C. Books, 2010/2011. 160p. $28.95. Gr. 7-12.
-Childress, Diana. Equal Rights is our Minimum Demand: The Wom
en’s Rights Movement in Iran, 2005. 978-0-7613-
-Edge, Laura Bufano. We Stand as One: The International Ladies Garment Workers' Strike, New York, 1909. 978-0-
-Goldstein, Margaret J. You are now on Indian Land: The American Indian Occupation of Alcatraz Island,
California, 1969. 978-0-7613-5769-8.
r, Melody. Sitting for Equal Service : Lunch Counter Sit-Ins, United States, 1960s. 978-0-8225-8
-Kallen, Stuart A. O
pen the Jail Doors-- We Want to Enter: The Defiance Campaign Against Apartheid Laws, South Africa, 1952. 978-0-8225-8969-3.
-Kallen, Stuart A. We are Not Beasts of Burden: Cesar Chavez and the Delano Grape Strike, California, 1965-1970.
-Kerns, Ann. Wh
o Will Shout if Not Us?: Student Activists and the Tiananmen Square Protest, China, 1989. 978-0-8225- 8971-6.
-Kuhn, Betsy. The Force Born of Truth: Mohandas
Gandhi and the Salt March, India, 1930. 978-
-Kuhn, Betsy. Gay Power! The Stonewall Riots and
the Gay Rights Movement, 1969. 978-0-7613-5768-4.
-Magoon, Kekla. Today the World is Watching You: The Little Rock Nine and the Fight for School Integration, 1957. 978-0-7613-5767-4.
I have so many positive comments about this series! The content is comprehensive and extensive within each title; the design is appealing and user friendly with beautiful images and helpful graphics filling the pages along with pertinent quotes; the text is organized and digestible; the volumes are sold individually allowing you to select titles specific to your curricular needs; and the appendix information is useful and unique – Important YouTube videos are included along with important books and websites on the subject. If any of these titles meet your curricular needs, buy more than one copy if you can. The publisher and authors deserve applause on this series!
Karen Hornberger – Palisades High School
Flowers, Arthur, et al. I See the Promised Land: A Life of Martin Luther King. India: Tara Books, 2010. 978-93-80340-04-3. 138p. $16.95 Gr. 9-12.

Freedman, Russell. The War to End All Wars: World War I New York: Cl
arion Books, 20
10. 978-0-547-02686-2 176p. $22.00 Gr. 6-10.
An amazing photo essay about World War I—the first war to employ modern weapons. Freedman uses amazing photographs and eyewitness accounts to demonstrate why this was called the “war to end all wars” before World War II began in 1939. Younger readers who are interested in the topic will be drawn in by the clear text and quotations from witnesses and participants in the conflict, especially since every other page features a photograph. The chapters trace the timeline of the War from the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand to Armistice Day. The last chapter gives an overview of Europe at the end of the Great War and the circumstances that gave rise to World War II. Back matter includes a selected bibliography including suggestions for further reading.
Mary Fran Torpey—Friends’ Central School
Fry, Juliane, et al. The Encyclopedia of Weather and Climate Change. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2010. 978-0-520-26101-3. 512p. $39.95. Grades 7-Adult.

Gherman, Beverly. Sparky: The Life and Art of Charles Schulz. San Francisco: Chronicle, 2010. 978-0-8118-6790-0. 125 p. $16.99. Gr. 5-8.
The Peanuts gang comes alive in this irresistible invitation to the cartooning world of Charles Schulz. Large print, colorful pages, photographs and numerous comic strip samples will tempt middle level students to read and enjoy. Strong writing with many personal anecdotes about Charles Schulz make this book a winner. If you’d like to know how Snoopy got his name or if there really was a little red-haired girl, this is the book for you. Recommended.
Ro Becker – Springfield Township Middle School
Gourley, Catherine. The Horrors of Andersonville – Life and Death Inside a Civil War Prison. Minneapolis: Twenty-First Century Books,2010. 978-0-7613-4212-0. 179 p. $38.60.
Gr. 7-12.
In the Civil War that saw 640,000 lives sacrificed, Catherine Gourley tells the story of one small aspect of the general carnage, the plight of Union prisoners of war. Gourley presents the story relying upon diaries and published writings of the soldiers who lived, and survived or died in Andersonville Prison from February 1864 through April 1865. Overcrowded at the start, nearly 15,000 of the 45,000 prisoners perished from exposure, scurvy and starvation, diseases, shootings by guards, the predations of fellow prisoners, and the strategic neglect of President Lincoln and General Grant. The Confederate government never provided nearly enough food and medical supplies, or any shelter at all from the elements. Confederate prisoners in Northern prisons fared somewhat better, but the victors were not called to account for rebel deaths in their prison camps. Gourley describes the prisoners’ daily fight to survive another day and sets the stage for the ultimate arrest, trial and execution of the camp’s commandant, Captain Henry Wirtz, even though Lee’s surrender at Appomattox provided for a general amnesty for rebel soldiers. The volume includes a Cast of Characters, recommended websites, readings and film, and source notes. Peppered with fascinating primary sources, photographs and other illustrations, this concise volume will be extremely helpful for student research.
Joyce and Dennis Valenza, Springfield Township High School
Hetrick, Hans. The Story of Miami Heat. The NBA: A History of Hoops. Mankato, Creative
Education, 2010. 978-1-5834-
1950-2. 48p. $34.95. Gr. 7-12.

Hillenbrand, Laura. Unbroken: A World War II S
tory of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption. New York: Random House,
2010. 978-1-400-06416-8. 496p. $13.99. Gr. 10-12.
Louie Zamperini, once an Olympic athlete, begins this story which reads as a novel stranded in the ocean after his plane crashes during World War II. The story follows Louie from childhood to adulthood as he is a trouble child, a high school and college athletic wonder, a fighter pilot, and a POW. Any student who loves chronicles of war and perseverance will enjoy this remarkable story.
Karen Hornberger – Palisades High School
Holzer, Howard. FatherAbraham – Lincoln and His Sons. Honesdale, PA: Calkins Creek, 2011. 978-1-59078-303-0. 209 p. $17.95. Gr. 7-12.
In a very few pages, Holzer gives us a summary of Lincoln’s adult life from his early days riding the judicial circuit in Illinois, his uncomfortable courting of Mary Todd – he left her at the altar the first time he tried marriage – through his political forays in Illinois and ultimately his term as President. There have been stacks of volumes written about the Lincoln’s Presidency and the Civil War, and several that discuss the relationship with his wife. This one, as its title suggests, humanizes Lincoln in a manner not typically seen. Holzer describes a totally indulgent father enthralled by his two youngest sons, Willie and Tad, both of whom might be called incorrigible in today’s climate. The relationship between the eldest son, Robert, the only one of Lincoln’s sons to survive childhood, and his parents dimmed after the loss of younger brother Eddie, and the coming of Willie and Tad. In all, it is generally a picture of Lincoln’s supreme joy with his children during the depths of the War, filled with anecdotes that tell more of the man as a person than the marble god in his memorial. Black and white art and photographs enhance the storytelling. Holzer, the author or editor of 35 books about Lincoln and the Civil War, writes an engaging biography that humanizes an icon and his family, one that ought to be in middle and high school collections.
Joyce and Dennis Valenza
Jordan-Fenton, Christy and Margaret Pokiak-Fenton. Fatty Legs. Toronto: Annick Press, 2010. 978-1-55451-246-1. 104p.
$12.95. Gr. 4-8.
When Olemaun Pokiak, an Inuvialuit girl from Banks Island on the Arctic Ocean, was eight years old, her greatest desire was to learn to read. She begged her parents to allow her to attend school on the mainland, but they vehemently refused, realizing that the intent of these church-run schools was to strip Aboriginal children of their traditional skills and culture. The strong-willed Olemaun was persistent, however, and her parents finally relented. At school, she was renamed Margaret, and her strong-will caused her to run afoul of a wicked nun, whom she referred to as “the Raven.” Olemaun’s favorite book was Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, and throughout her story she draws parallels between her own experiences and Alice’s. Artist Liz Amini-Holmes follows through on this allusion with her illustrations, making the Raven reminiscent of The Queen of Hearts. Readers will cheer for the feisty Margaret as she manages to get an education while retaining her spirit and her sense of identity and as she discovers for herself why Alice really went down that rabbit hole.
Patricia Fischer - Edward Hand Middle School, Lancaster
Locricchio, Matthew. Teen Cuisine. Tarrytown, NY: Marshall Cavendish, 2010. 978-0-7614-5715-2. 207p. $22.95. Gr. 7-12
Teen Cuisine presents a large variety of appetizing recipes. This book has at least five recipes per meal plus many more under the pizza, sides, entrée, and dessert categories. The ingredients are readily available from local grocery stores. These recipes explore different cultures and present the culinary arts in an attractive, well-illustrated, and easy-to-understand format. This fun, easy book will appeal to any teenagers looking to cook!
Kylie T., Springfield Township Middle School
McDermott, Kristen and Ari Berk. William Shakespeare: His Life and Times. Dorking: Templar, 2010. 978-0-7636-4794-0. 28p. $19.99. Gr. 7-12.
This biography of William Shakespeare is an authoritative guide to Shakespeare’s life and times presented in a tactile feast. McDermott and Berk are professors of Mythology and English, respectively. Publisher Templar is known for the Dragonology books, which are interactive paper creations. Together, this team has created an engaging Shakespeare “autobiography.” An introductory letter, one of over 20 “extras” (this one tucked in a pocket), is written to his daughter, Judith, explaining that the book is a scrapbook of his life. This book will keep high school readers busy in the library. Librarians may need to keep it there to protect it in the same way that one would protect a pop-up book. Despite the fragility of the book, it is a worthy investment for lovers of and newcomers to Shakespeare.
Biography. Sarah Braxton - Juniata Valley School District
Moss,Stephen. The Bumper Book of Nature: A User’s Guide to the Great Outdoors. New York, NY: Crown Publishing, 2010. 978-0307589996. 272p. $29.99. Gr. 5+ and adults/teachers.

Murray, Liz. Breaking Night: A Memoir of Forgiveness, Survival, and My Journey from Homeless to Harvard. New York:
Hyperion, 2010. 978-0-7868-6891-9. 334p. $21.24. Gr. 9-12.
In the vein of The Glass Castle, this author recounts her extraordinary journey from being a daughter of criminal drug addicts to a successful student of Harvard. The grittiness of Liz’s childhood is often too painful and grotesque to imagine. Her parents ritually injected cocaine in the kitchen as she curiously watched from her stroller and, when the deed was done, innocently declared with arms outstretched, “aaallll done!” She and her sister went days without a meal as her parents used the precious welfare checks for coke rather than food. This incredible story isn’t only about the horrid conditions that this woman overcame to be a success, but also how she came to find forgiveness. It is remarkable how even at the tender age of five, Liz finds herself in the role of nurturer and protector for her parents, realizing that they are not capable of being providers themselves. An intriguing read which is very deserving of the
Alex Award. Mary Schwander – New Hope-Solebury High School
Nutrition and Health series. Detroit: Lucent, 2011. 96-104 p. $30.80,. Gr. 7-10.
-Juettner, Bonnie. Diet and Disease. 978-1-4205-0270-1.
- Woog, Adam. Food Myths and Facts. 978-1-4205-0269-5.
Nutrition and Health series. Detroit: Lucent, 2011. 96-104 p. $30.80, Gr. 7-10.
Juettner, Bonnie. Diet and Disease. 978-1-4205-0270-1.
Woog, Adam. Food Myths and Facts. 978-1-4205-0269-5.
Visually attractive and highly informative, these books give students a foundation in both what constitutes a healthy diet and the importance of it. Food Myths and Facts focuses on nutrition, exercise, and healthy weight while Diet and Disease details the correlation between foods and heart disease, cancer, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. The books strongly emphasize the importance of fruits, vegetables, and grains to overall health and preventing disease. Facts boxes, charts and tables, glossaries, organizations to contact, and source lists for more information add value to these outstanding resources for health/science classes.
Ro Becker – Springfield Township Middle School
Science Fair Winners series. Washington, DC: National Geographic, 2910. 80p. $26.89. Gr. 5-9.
-Experiments to Do on Your Family: 20 Projects and Experiments About Sisters, Brothers, Parents, Pets, and the Rest of the Gang. 978-1-4263-0692-1.
-Junkyard Science. 978-1-4263-0690-7
Science Fair Winners series. Washington, DC: National Geographic, 2910. 80p. $26.89. Gr. 5-9.
Experiments to Do on Your Family: 20 Projects and Experiments about Sisters, Brothers, Parents, Pets, and the Rest of the Gang. 978-1-4263-0692-1.
Junkyard Science. 978-1-4263-0690-7.
Each of these books offers twenty science fair experiments that will “wow your teachers…” Practical, kid-friendly experiments/studies such as a project designed to analyze school lunch trash and find ways to reduce it and determining the connection between birth order and kids’ actions and activities. The books give enough background information, including materials and procedure, to help students get started, while still requiring them to find their own answers. Cartoon drawing and a busy format will appeal to most kids. This series would be an excellent addition to middle school science fair collections.
Ro Becker – Springfield Township Middle School
Skloot, Rebecca. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. New York: Crown Publishers, 2010. 978-1-4000-5217-2. 369p. $26.00. Gr. 9+.
This book reads like a science thriller: Henrietta Lacks was a poor inner city mother of five in Baltimore when she entered through the “Coloreds Only” entrance of Johns Hopkins University Hospital for treatment of cervical cancer in 1950. Doctors took cell samples from the tumor that later killed her and discovered for the first time they could grow human cells in the lab. Henrietta’s cells not only grew, they were positively viral, sadly due to a unique combination of cancer and a several sexually transmitted diseases from which Henrietta suffered. No one in the Lacks family knew that the tissue extracted from her body - “HeLa” cells which are to this day the bread and butter of medical research labs around the world - would live on and reproduce for decades, playing a role in nearly every medial breakthrough since the 1950s including the cure for polio, HIV therapies, treatments for many forms of cancer, and more. Author and science reporter Skloot spent 10 long years getting to know Henrietta’s family and tracking down the clues to tell this heartbreaking story of a family suffering through sickness and poverty while medical companies make millions on their mother’s anonymous cells. Contains photos.
Kathie Jackson – Arcadia University Library Student
Stone, Tanya Lee. The Good, the Bad, and the Barbie: A Doll's History and Her Impact on Us. New York : Penguin
Group, 2010. 978-0-670-01187-2. 130p. $16.99. Gr. 6+.
This book provides a history of all things Barbie. Stone provides interesting biographical information on her creator Ruth Handler and discusses the impart Barbie has had on society over the past fifty years. Stone looks at the controversies over Barbie, from her weight to the fifty different nationalities she has represented. A very fun read that students love to pick up in passing. Contains lots of pictures, quotes from celebrities, and an index in the back.
Melissa Daugherty – Sharon Middle High School
Teen Health Series. Detroit, M: Omnigraphics, Inc., 2010. 440p. $62.00. Gr. 9-12.
-Bellenir, Karen. Mental Health Information for Teens. 978-0-7808-1087-7.
-Bellenir, Karen. Tobacco Information for Teens. 978-0-7808-1153-9.
-Magill, Elizabeth. Drug Information for Teens. 978-0-7808-1154-6.
Teen Health Series. Detroit: Omnigraphics, 2010.
Drug Information for Teens: Health Tips about the Physical and Mental Effects of Substance Abuse Including information about Alcohol, Tobacco, Marijuana, Prescription and Over-the-Counter Drugs, Club Drugs, Hallucinogens, Stimulants, Opiates, Steroids, and More. 978-0-7808-1154-6. 490p. $62. Gr. 7-12.
This is the 3rd edition of this informative title in the Teen Health Series. It is packed with up-to-date facts, figures and issues related to drug use and abuse for students and teachers seeking information for personal use or research. Articles are cited in each brief chapter and in every fact box. Final chapters list organizations for additional information, help, and further reading. An index is included.
Michelle Stone-Sandy Run Middle School