Your library is packed with free information
Endless variety of books cater to kids' changing interests
Many years ago, the American Library Association had a clever poster to encourage reading and patronage of libraries. The poster read: "Free Information: Bring Your Own Container." The container, of course, was your brain.
Your public library has mountains of free information to offer — books on just about every subject: fiction and nonfiction, magazines, newspapers, videos and often computers. What a great place to feed the mind, have fun and grow.
Children grow quickly, and their tastes and interests change just as rapidly. The public library can accommodate their changing interests and expand on them by offering books about all sorts of subjects and ideas.
Make the commitment to go to the library at least once every week. It's a good habit to establish and one that a child can take advantage of for the rest of their lives.
Books to Borrow
The following book is available at many public libraries.
"Hill Hawk Hattie" by Clara Gillow Clark, Candlewick, 176 pages
Read aloud: age 8 — 9 and older
Read yourself: age 9 — 10 and older
Hattie's ma has died, and now it's just her and her pa. Hattie longs for her ma again, and her pa has become ornery and takes to the whiskey a lot.
Pa is a logger, and one day he announces that Hattie will be joining him to help cut down trees, build a raft and ride the river all the way to Philadelphia to sell the wood. Hattie will work alongside a young man, Jasper, and his father, who will join them on their own raft when the spring thaw comes.
Pa is one of the best rafters on the river, but he tells Hattie that river-rafting can be dangerous and isn't for girls, so she is to dress and act like a boy.
Hattie does what she is told, and she proves to be more like her father than either one would have suspected. She learns the river, how to handle the rapids and hold steady through the rough waters and emotional ride.
Full of relationships, the pain of being torn apart and the joy of coming together again, this suspenseful, historical novel will command readers' attention through all 176 pages.
Library: Yuba County Library, 303 Second St., Marysville
Interim Director: Kevin Mallen
Choices this week: "The Princess and the Pea" by Lauren Child; "Old Black Fly" by Jim Aylesworth; "The Golden Compass" by Philip Pullman
Books to Buy
The following books are available at your favorite bookstores.
"Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile: Storybook Treasury" written and illustrated by Bernard Waber, Houghton, Mifflin, Harcourt, 2012, 180 pages, $10.99 hardcover
Read aloud: age 3 and older
Read yourself: age 7 — 8 and older
Fifty years ago, Bernard Waber wrote his first book about the Primm family and their much loved and most amusing pet crocodile, Lyle. This 50th anniversary celebration book features four complete books: "The House on East 88th Street"; "Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile"; "Lyle and the Birthday Party"; and "Lyle Walks the Dog."
Whether you've met Lyle the Crocodile or not, either way, you're in for a special treat with this delightful book. A bit like Paddington the Bear in crocodile form, Lyle gets into a bit of unintentional mischief but ultimately warms the hearts of all who meet him. And four books in one for a retail price of $10.99 make this offering the deal of the year.
"Stink and the Midnight Zombie Walk" by Megan McDonald, illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds, Candlewick, 2012, 145 pages, $12.99 hardcover
Read aloud: age 6 — 7 and older
Read yourself: 8 and older
Stink and his friends are crazy about zombies. What's even better, in one more week, Book 5 in the "Nightmare on Zombie Street" series will be released, and the local bookstore is having a big event to celebrate, including a midnight zombie walk where participants will be in full zombie costumes.
In preparation, Stink and his classmates hurry to reach their goal of 1 million minutes of reading before the zombie walk while they also get their costumes together. Focusing on zombies, however, is beginning to make Stink think his ventriloquist dummy, Charlie, might just be a real zombie.
The seventh book featuring the very popular character Stink, kids are certain to love this latest book in the series.
Kendal A. Rautzhan writes and lectures about children's literature. She can be reached at her website: greatestbooksforkids.com.