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Summer Reading Program: Books to Dig into

Contains information and links for the current Collborative Summer Library theme, new and ideas.

Books to Dig into

Dig into Reading SRP 2013

Picture Books

Bendall-Brunell, John. Snore, Dinosaur, Snore.  Tarrytown, NY: Marshall Cavendish, 2009. Three little dinosaurs try several different ways to wake their sleeping mother.

Black, Holly and Tony Di Terilizzi, illus. Arthur Spiderwick’s Field Guide to the Fantastical World around You.  This very elaborately illustrated field guide presents an introduction to the faerie world, examples of thirty-one faerie species such as boggarts, goblins, sprites and pixies, and instructions on how to prepare for faerie investigations..

Boyd, Lizi. I Love Grandpa. Somerville, MA: Candlewick, 2009. A young frog spends the day on his grandpa's farm. They ride the tractor together as they mow the lawn and hum a song. In the barn, they tidy up the tools. Their activities continue throughout the day, including a stop at a diner for grilled cheese sandwiches. When they return home, they sit on the couch and Grandpa makes up stories and takes Frog out to the barn to show him baby birds in a nest.

Brendler, Carol and Ard Hoyt.  Winnie Finn, Worm Farmer.  New York: Farrar, Strauss Giroux, 2009. Winnie Finn raises earthworms, which help her neighbors win prizes at the county fair. Includes instructions on making a worm farm.

Cuyler, Margery and Bob Kolar, illus. The Little Dump Truck. New York: Henry Holt, 2009. A happy little dump truck, driven by Hard Hat Pete, hauls stones, rocks, and debris from a construction site to a landfill.

Cyrus, Kurt. Tadpole Rex. Orlando: Harcourt, 2008. A tiny primordial tadpole grows into a frog, feeling just as strong and powerful as the huge tyrannosaurus rex that stomps through the mud.

Fallwell, Cathryn. The Mysterious Vine. New York: Greenwillow, 2009. When a mysterious vine appears in their carefully tended garden, the brother and sister patiently watch and wait to see what it becomes. Includes gardening activities and pumpkin recipes

Faulkner, Keith and Stephen Holmes, illus. Big Bug! New York: Cartwheel, 2004. Bright, colorful illustrations of children and insects accompany a rhyming guessing game on every spread of the pop-up book.

Fisher, Valorie. When Ruby Tried to Grow Candy. New York: Swartz and Wade. 2008. After meeting her mysterious neighbor, a young girl plants a candy garden, with delicious results

Gerardi, Jan. The Little Composter. New York: Random House, 2010. Toddlers show how to make compost out of apple cores, carrot tops, and other useful leftovers, and how to grow a home garden with it. Board Book.

Gourley, Robbin. The First Garden: The White House Garden and How it Grew. New York: Clarion, 2011. Presents a history of the White House Gardens, including Michelle Obama's kitchen garden planted with help from some fifth graders at Bancroft Elementary School, in a book that provides recipes and gardening ideas

Jane, Pamela and Jane Manning, illus.:  Little Goblins Ten. New York: Harper, 2011. Ghouls, goblins, ghosts, witches, and other scary creatures cavort in the forest on Halloween, introducing the numbers one through ten.

Lehman, Barbara. Train Stop. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2008. In this wordless picture book, a young girl takes a train and makes a stop at a most unusual place where she has an important task to perform.

Loxton, Daniel and Jim W. Smith, illus. Ankylosaur Attack.  Toronto: Kids Can Press, 2011. A story of how a young ankylosaurus was able to fight off a tyrannosaurus rex.

Lund, Deb and Howard Fine, illus.  Dinosauring. Boston: Harcourt, 2012. When dinosaurs go flying in an airplane and attempt to do stunts, they soon tire of the adventure and seek other, more stable pursuits. Look for other delightful Dino books by Lund and Fine.

Mayo, Margaret and Alex Ayliff, illus. Stomp, Dinosaur, Stomp .New York: Walker, 2010. Illustrations and rhythmic text depict dinosaurs from ankylosaurus to plesiosaurus and tyrannosaurus stomping, swooshing, plodding, and lunging through the landscape

Merlin. Under the Hood.  Somerville, MA: Candlewick, 2011. A bear mechanic welcomes the reader to his garage where he will try to fix his car, but first needs help in finding his friends, Mouse, Crocodile, and Bird under lift-up flaps and fold-out pages

Peters, Lisa Westberg and Steve Jenkins, illus. Volcano Wakes Up! New York: Henry Holt, 2009. Playful poems from five alternating viewpoints tell the story of an exciting day--from sunrise to moonrise--on a young, about-to-shout volcano.

Puttock, Simon.  Yours Truly, Louisa. New York: HarperCollins, 2009. Louisa the pig writes anonymous letters to Farmer Joe complaining about conditions on the farm.

Raven, Margot Theis. Night Boat to Freedom. New York: Farrar, Straus, Giroux, 2006. Recounts Harriet Tubman's daring escape from slavery and her heroic efforts that brought three hundred African Americans to freedom through the Underground Railroad.

Ringgold, Faith. Aunt Harriet’s Underground Railroad in the Sky. New York: Crown, 1992. With Harriet Tubman as her guide, Cassie retraces the steps escaping slaves took on the Underground Railroad in order to reunite with her younger brother.

Sarcone-Roach, Julia.  Subway Story. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2011. Jessie, a subway car "born" in St. Louis, Missouri, enjoys many years as an important part of the New York City subway system, and after she is replaced by more modern cars she begins another important job.

Siminovich, Lorena. I Like Bugs: Petit Collage. Somerville, MA: Templar, 2011. Board Book.

Slate, Joseph and Earl B. Lewis, illus. I Want to Be Free! New York: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 2009. Based on a sacred Buddhist tale as related in Rudyard Kipling's novel "Kim," tells of an escaped slave who rescues an abandoned baby from slave hunters.

Sutton, Sally and Brian Lovelock, illus. Roadwork. Somerville, MA: Candlewick, 2008. As they prepare to build the road, big trucks and machinery are brought out to do the job--from loading the dirt and clearing a pathway to rolling the tar and sweeping up the debris at the very end.

Vamos, Samantha R. and Rafael Lopez, illus. The Cazuela that the Farm Maiden Stirred.  Watertown, MA: Charlesbridge, 2011. A cumulative tale of a farm maiden who, aided by a group of animals, prepares "Arroz con Leche," or rice pudding. Includes recipe and glossary of the Spanish words that are woven throughout the text.

Waddell, Martin. Farmer Duck. Cambridge, MA: Candlewick, 1992. When a kind and hardworking duck nearly collapses from overwork, while taking care of a farm because the owner is too lazy to do so, the rest of the animals get together and chase the farmer out of town



Brown, Don. Gold! Gold from the American River. New York: Roaring Press, 2011. Introduces young readers to the history of the California gold rush, describing the journey to California, the process of panning for gold, and the fortunes that this gold brought many different people.

Clinton, Catherine.  When Harriet Tubman Met Sojourner Truth. New York: Katherine Books, 2008. Despite their overlapping work, Sojourner Truth and Harriet Tubman only met one time, and their conversation was not recorded, but this biography of two powerful civil rights leaders imagines what may have happened during their encounter in Boston in 1864.

Giford, Clive. Spies Revealed. New York: Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2008. Describes the history of spies, including the tools and equipment used, the techniques of espionage, and famous spies in real life and in motion pictures. Contains slots and flaps.

Jenkins, Steve. The Beetle Book. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2012. Introduces beetles, including their different parts, their life cycles, what they eat, and what makes them special in the insect world.

Jenkins: Steve. Bones and How They Work. New York: Scholastic, 2010. Featuring intricate, collage-style cut-paper images by a Caldecott Honor-winning illustrator, a guide to human and animal skeletons provides informative comparisons while sharing such facts as the number of bones in the human body and the ways that skeletal structures work

Landau, Elaine. California Gold Rush: Would You Go for the Gold?  Berkley Heights, NJ: Enslow, 2009. Discusses the California Gold Rush in American history, including the first discovery of gold, the 49ers, and how the gold rush changed the landscape of America.

Lewis, J. Patrick and John Thompson, illus. Freedom Like Sunlight. Mankato, MN, Creative Editions, 2000. Presents poems and brief biographical notes about such well-known African Americans as: Arthur Ashe, Harriet Tubman, Sojourner Truth, Louis Armstrong, Martin Luther King, Jr., "Satchel" Paige, Rosa Parks, Langston Hughes, Jesse Owens, Marian Anderson, Malcolm X, Wilma Rudolph, and Billie Holiday.

Lindop, Laurie.  Cave Sleuths. Minneapolis: 21st Century Books, 2006.  Discusses the science of speleology and what scientists have learned about caves, how they are formed, and what lives in them

Nichols, Catherine. Smelly Skunks. New York: Bearport, 2009. Describes the physical characteristics, behavior, and natural defenses of skunks

Nichols, Catherine.  Tricky Opossums. New York: Bearport, 2009. Describes the physical characteristics, behavior, and natural defenses of opossums.

Scott, Elaine. Buried Alive: How 33 Miners Survived 69 Days Deep Under the Chilean Desert. New York: Clarion Books, 2012.

Stewart, Melissa. Earthquakes and Volcanoes FYI. Washington, DC: Smithsonian, 2008. Dives deep beneath the earth's crust to find out why volcanoes and earthquakes occur and how they change the shape of the world, and includes interviews with two Smithsonian curators and links to further reading and web sites

Williams, Marcia. Ancient Egypt: Tales of Gods and Pharaohs. Somerville, MA: Candlewick, 2011. Retells nine tales of ancient Egypt, including the story of Ra rising from the waters of the Nile to create the gods of the earth, sky, and rain


Basye, Dale. E. Heck: Where the Bad Kids Go. New York: Random House, 2008. When a freak marshmallow explosion sends both Milton and Marlo Fauster to Heck, a reform school run by Bea 'Elsa' Bubb, the Principal of Darkness. Although his sister, a naughty kleptomaniac, deserves to be there, Milton believes he shouldn't. Now the siblings must find a way to escape before they are stuck in Heck for eternity. First in the series.

Fagan, Deva.  Magical Misadventures of Prunella Bogthistle.  New York: Henry Holt, 2010. The personal quests of a young witch who aspires to be a villain and a young thief who is determined to become a hero intersect in a swampy bog.

Mason, Timothy. The Last Synapsid. New York: Random House, 2009. Hearing rumors about a strange creature in the mountains, brave Rob and Phoebe go to investigate and discover the Last Synapsid, a dinosaur-like creature, who needs help in chasing down the Gorgon, a carnivorous gorgonsopid, whose reckless time-travelling will result in disaster for the human race

Petry, Ann. Harriet Tubman, Conductor on the Underground Railroad. New York: Harper Trophy, 1996. Recounts Harriet Tubman's daring escape from slavery and her heroic efforts that brought three hundred African Americans to freedom through the Underground Railroad

Ross, Stewart. Curse of the Crocodile God. New York: DK Publishing, 2007. In Ancient Egypt, the lives of thirteen-year-olds Methen and Madja are endangered when they stumble across a group of grave robbers who are plundering the pyramids. Graphic novel, easy reader.

Smith, Sherwood and William Stout, illus. Trouble under Oz. New York: HarperCollins, 2006. When a family emergency takes Dori and Em's mother out of town at the same time that Glinda summons them to Oz, the sisters decide that only Dori should go to Oz while Em stays home to conceal her absence. A Descendents of Dorothy book.

Spector, Baron and Setch Kneupper. Track Your Nightmare, Graveyard Diaries Book 1. New York: Magic Wagon, 2012. Jared Jenson lives next to Woodland Cemetery at the far corner of Marshfield. He used to think it was funny that he and his best friend, Stan, live by cemeteries, but now it's starting to creep him out. In his dreams each night, he sees people dragging bodies through the cemetery . . . until he is dragged for real! Ghostly grave robbers think he is supposed to be buried in the Potter's Field grave. Can Jared, Stan, and the rest of the Zombie Hunters track down Jared's nightmare and free them all from the grave robbers before it's too late.

Ullman, Barbara Bentler. Fairies in the Nutfolk Wood. New York: Katherine Tegen Books, 2006. After her parents divorce and she moves to the country with her mother, fourth-grader Willa Jane, anxious and unhappy with the changes in her life, discovers a world of little people called Nutfolk living in the woods around her new home.

Umanksy, Kaye and Johanna Wright, illus. Clover Twig and the Magical Cottage. Brookfield, CN: Roaring Press, 2009. Capable and hardworking ten-year-old Clover Twig takes a job as housekeeper for a messy witch, Demelza, but while Demelza is away Clover and an accident-prone neighbor boy must defend the weird cottage from the witch's evil sister.

Ward, Nick. Charlie in the Underworld. New York: David Fickling Books, 2009. A continuation of the purported journal of an eight-year-old adventurer, as he faces myriad strange creatures in the underground world of Subterranea.


What Lies Beneath


MacCready, Robin Merrow. Buried. New York: Dutton, 2006. When her alcoholic mother goes missing, seventeen-year-old Claudine begins to spin out of control, despite her attempts to impose order on every aspect of her life.

Derting, Kimberly. Desires of the Dead. New York: Harper Collins, 2011. Sixteen-year-old Violet Ambrose's ability to find murder victims and their killers draws the attention of the FBI just as her relationship with Jay, her best-friend-turned-boyfriend, heats up. Sequel to The Body Finder.

Dowd, Frances O’Rourke. Falling In. New York: Atheneum, 2012. Middle-schooler Isabelle Bean follows a mouse's squeak into a closet and falls into a parallel universe where the children believe she is the witch they have feared for years, finally come to devour them.

Dowd, Siobhan. Bog Child. New York: David Fickling Books, 2008. In 1981, the height of Ireland's "Troubles," eighteen-year-old Fergus is distracted from his upcoming A-level exams by his imprisoned brother's hunger strike, the stress of being a courier for Sinn Fein, and dreams of a murdered girl whose body he discovered in a bog.

Dunkle, Clare. Sky Inside. New York: Atheneum, 2008. After the disappearance of his sister, Cassie, and other children who ask questions about their carefully choreographed life in a domed suburb cut off from the outside world, Martin and his intelligent dog investigate.

Kerr, Philip. Day of the Djinn Warriors. New York: Orchard Books, 2008. After getting help for their father, who is cursed with rapid aging, twelve-year-old djinn twins John and Philippa and friends travel through the spirit world in search of Faustina, the only one who can keep their mother from becoming the Blue Djinn, and discover a link to museum thefts and hauntings throughout the world.

Verday, Jessica.  The Hollow. New York: Simon Pulse, 2009. High-school junior Abbey struggles with the loss of her best friend Kristen, who vanished on a legendary bridge, but her grief is eased by Caspian, an attractive and mysterious stranger she meets in the Sleepy Hollow cemetery.

Whitten, A. J. The Well. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2009. Fourteen-year-old Cooper must face a monster trapped for two centuries in a well near his stepfather's Maine vineyard or risk everything that he holds dear, including his girlfriend, Megan.

Whyman, Matt. Ice Core. New York: Atheneum, 2009. He's a seventeen-year-old British computer hacker who penetrated the security systems at Fort Knox for a laugh. But the American government was less than amused. Since his prank, gold bars have been landing in the hands of terrorists across the globe. Now, Carl has found himself in a military prison deep in the Arctic and far off the grid. He's been caged alongside the world's most notorious terrorists, with no one to trust and no end in sight. Carl Hobbes may not be a criminal mastermind, but if he wants to escape this subzero prison with his life, he'll have to start thinking like one


Groundbreaking Reads


Winchester, Simon. Krakatoa: The Day the World Exploded. New York: HarperCollins, 2003. Considers the global impact of the 1883 eruption of the Krakatoa volcano, documenting its cause of an immense tsunami that killed 40,000 people, its impact on the weather for several years, and its role in anti-Western Islamic fundamentalism.

Winchester, Simon. The Map That Changed the World: William Smith and the Birth of Modern Geology. New York: HarperCollins, 2001. A glimpse into the life of William Smith, a nineteenth-century engineer who became the founding father of modern geology, explores his creation of a lavish map detailing his discovery that rocks consist of many different layers.

Winchester, Simon. The Crack at the Edge of the World: America and the Great California Earthquake of 1906. New York: HarperCollins, 2005. A Crack in the Edge of the World is the definitive account of the San Francisco earthquake and a fascinating exploration of a legendary event that changed the way we look at the planet on which we live.


Subject Guide

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