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Back-To-School Book Reviews

Below are four back-to-school themed book reviews for different ages, compiled by Heather Simpson-Russell, the Youth Librarian at the Joint-Use Library.


Preschool to 6 years:

Pete the Cat: Rocking My School Shoes By Eric Litwin

It’s time for school… it’s time for school…it’s time school. Is your little one worried? Let Pete the Cat show that the classroom, lunch room, library and playground are all groovy places to be as he explores them all in his groovy shoes. Is this the only book for your little one to meet Pete? Goodness No! Look for his new book this Fall at your Virginia Beach Public Library, Pete the Cat and His Magic Sunglasses.


Ages 6-8:

What Floats in a Moat? By Lynne Berry

Archimedes is a goat with a mission. His trusty helper Hen and he must find a way to cross a moat to get buttermilk to the queen. How would you cross a moat? Your little problem solver will have some great solutions!  Introduce scientific theory as Archie and Hen test their ideas until they get it right. Don’t forget the author’s note in the back that explains ballast. For more early science literacy and STEM programming, visit your public library.


Ages 8+

P.S. Be Eleven By Rita Williams-Garcia

Day one of sixth grade is one of the scariest of school year starts. Delphine knows this well. She has just spent a life-changing summer with her mother and sisters in California. Now she’s back to 1960’s Brooklyn with her dad’s new girlfriend, an uncle just back from Vietnam and younger sisters who don’t want to listen. She’s starting 6th grade, she is the tallest girl in her class and she must get ready for an upcoming school dance. Discover how this heroine from, One Crazy Summer, discovers that sixth grade and being 12 isn’t so bad, after all.


Ages 12+

Almost Home By Joan Bauer

You can’t take a class on how to handle every possible complication life may bring. You can learn a lot from your teachers. That’s exactly what Sugar does in Joan Bauer’s, Almost Home. Sugar and her mother lose their house and are deserted by her father. Homeless, they move in and out of shelters, where Sugar eventually loses her mother to a mental facility. She finds inspiration from communicating with her old teacher, who inspires her talent for writing and learning how to accept life in all its uncertainties by choosing how you react.

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