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Trouble in the Trees

Yolanda Ridge (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554693863

Eleven-year-old Bree is happiest when she's climbing the trees at Cedar Grove, her urban townhouse complex. She's the best climber around, even better than an older boy, Tyler, who drives her crazy with his competitiveness. When Ethan, a younger boy, falls from a tree and hurts his elbow, the neighborhood council bans all tree-climbing in Cedar Grove. If Bree chooses to ignore the bylaw, her family could be kicked out of their home, so she vows to change the rule instead. After giving a presentation to the Neighborhood Council, she realizes this is not a battle she can win on her own, but rallying the Cedar Grove troops is more difficult than she imagined.

TJ and the Cats

Hazel Hutchins (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551433912

TJ may not like cats, but that doesn't stop a taxi from showing up at his door bearing his grandmother's four felines. Killer, Cleo, Kink and Maximillian the Emperor, Max for short, invade TJ's life and replace dinosaurs as the topic for his school project. His friend and partner for the project, Seymour, is deeply disappointed; the cats in his drawings all come out looking prehistoric. The animals' presence in TJ's house leads to a series of adventures, one involving the police and another involving a mass escape.

TJ and the Quiz Kids

Hazel Hutchins (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551437330

When master fact-gatherers TJ and Seymour are asked to join the school Quiz Kids team, TJ thinks Seymour should take the stage at the upcoming contest against the high-pressure Fairview School team. TJ is already more than occupied rescuing his cats and helping Gran get ready for her upcoming trip to Belize. When he goes with his dad to help with a renovation job on a huge house on Fairview Hill, he and T-Rex tangle with a rich girl and her giant dog, Frooie. Then Seymour develops stage fright, Alaska goes missing, and the girl from the big house shows up on the Fairview quiz team. TJ knows he has to sort things out - fast!

Things Are Looking Grimm, Jill

Dan Bar-el (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551438382

Princess Jill excels at jousting, fencing, skating and long-distance spitting. Her brother, King Jack, loves baking and spending time with Little Bo Peep and her sheep. So what's a princess to do when she receives a mysterious letter from the land of Grimm? Take up ballroom dancing? Not Princess Jill. All alone, with only her wits to guide her, Jill sets off to rescue the citizens of Grimm. Along the way she makes many odd new friends and discovers the value of listening to your mother.

The Ballad of Knuckles McGraw

Lois Peterson (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554692040

After eight-year-old Kevin Mason's mother abandons him, he takes refuge in his fantasy of becoming Knuckles McGraw, a tough cowboy roaming the plains on his legendary horse, Burlington Northern. But instead of riding the range, Kevin is stuck in a foster home with a pierced and tattooed teenager named Ice and a mute girl named Breezy. While he waits to be claimed by the father he barely remembers or the mother who left him a good-bye note in his lunchbox, Kevin (aka Knuckles McGraw) tries to communicate with Breezy, learns to get along with his bunkhouse-mate Ice, and discovers that memories can be as deceptive as family secrets.

TJ and the Sports Fanatic

Hazel Hutchins (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551434636

TJ Barnes is back, playing with his crazy cats, T-Rex and Alaska, helping out in his parents' hardware store and goofing around with his best friend, Seymour. When Seymour announces that he has signed them both up for a football team, TJ fears the worst. Neither of them is huge or mean or able to tackle, catch, throw, run or kick a ball down a field, but Seymour is determined to be a star. With the help of a stack of library books, TJ starts to understand the game but it takes more than a few books to figure out what's wrong with his best friend.

The Big Snapper

Katherine Holubitsky (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551438252

Ten-year-old Eddie lives with his mom and grandparents in a small cabin on the Queen Charlotte Islands. A year earlier, Eddie's dad took the ferry to the mainland and never returned. Eddie loves going fishing with Granddad and listening to his tall tales about the big snapper. Eddie believes if they catch such a fish, it might change his family's fortune. Mom decides to turn their cabin into a bed and breakfast. Some of the guests appreciate island life, but many do not. When Granddad falls ill and must go away for treatment, Eddie worries that he too may not come back. Already hurt and confused by his father's disappearance, upset by the attitudes of the tourists, and now missing his beloved grandfather, Eddie goes fishing alone in Granddad's skiff. Soon he is struggling with more than the need to stay afloat.

The Last Loon

Rebecca Upjohn (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554692934

Spending Christmas holidays in the wilderness with his ex-con aunt Mag is not Evan's idea of a good time. What's worse is that everyone he meets-even his new friend Cedar-is making a big deal about a loon that is hanging around on the lake. Why should Evan care about a dumb bird? When he discovers that the loon will die without help, he realizes he does care, but rescuing the wild bird turns out to be whole lot harder, and more dangerous, than he expected.

The Undergardeners

Desmond Anthony Ellis (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551438443

Mouse is small for his age and tired of being teased about it. Then one night he discovers, much to his surprise and delight, that he fits perfectly (well, almost perfectly) into the Undergarden, a subterranean world beneath his backyard. Mouse befriends the Undergardeners and helps them keep their existence safe from the dangerous world up top. All that, and he never has to change out of his pajamas!

Ten Thumb Sam

Rachel Dunstan Muller (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551437019

Sam Stringbini, the youngest son in a family of circus performers, is living every kid's dream, except for the fact that he is no good on the high wire, trapezes freak him out and magic mystifies him. When the Triple Top Circus is threatened by repeated acts of sabotage, Sam is the number one suspect. To clear his name, Sam enlists the help of his cousin, Harriet, and discovers that, while he may never be a sword-swallower or a lion-tamer, he just might be able to save the circus.

Somebody's Girl

Maggie De Vries (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554693849

Martha knows she is adopted, but she's well-loved and popular, at least until her mother gets pregnant and she feels her parents' attention start to shift. Upset and confused, Martha lashes out at and loses her friends. She also makes no secret about her annoyance at being forced to do a school project about sturgeon with Chance, a difficult boy whose foster parents are family friends. To add insult to injury, Martha's birth mother announces that she is getting married and moving away. Now Martha isn't number one in anybody's life. When her mom goes into labor prematurely, Martha realizes that she needs to figure out a way to be a better friend and daughter, and a great sister.

Strawberry Moon

Becky Citra (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551438368

The year is 1838 and Ellie's grandmother has arrived all the way from England. Ellie is horrified to discover that the forbidding old woman intends to take her back to Britain to be raised properly. Ellie is determined that she will not go, but what can a nine-year-old girl do in the face of an adult with her mind made up?

Rescue Pup

Jean Little (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551434582

Shakespeare is a Seeing Eye puppy. But before the time comes for him to train with a blind person, he must spend six months with a girl who has never learned to love. He does all he can to teach her, but the job places him in some dangerous situations and by the end of the story he has earned the title Rescue Pup.

Road Block

Yolanda Ridge (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781459800465

In this sequel to Trouble in the Trees, it's the end of grade six and Bree plans to spend the summer hanging around her townhouse complex in Vancouver, climbing trees with her friends. But her parents have other plans for her; she is going to Ontario to stay with her grandma who lives on a farm "in the middle of nowhere." A farm that is about to be destroyed by a superhighway unless Bree can stop it. Convinced that saving the land will end her grandma's unhappiness, Bree tries to rally cousins and neighbors, but instead of finding help, Bree uncovers some shocking things about her relatives. The more Bree gets to know about her extended family and their farm, the more complicated everything becomes. If she isn't able to save the farm, can she at least manage to save her family?

Peggy's Letters

Jacqueline Halsey (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551438344

In the final months of World War II, ten-year-old Peggy shelters with her mother and baby brother in a London butcher's shop during an air raid. They survive, but their home and everything in it are lost, including Peggy's most treasured possession, a biscuit tin of letters from her father. Their lives change dramatically and Peggy makes friends with a boy named Spud who has a passion for scavenging bombsites, leading to more than one surprising discovery.

Road Trip

Eric Walters (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551433875

Nick, Kia and their Mississauga Magic teammates are on the road, heading off to an elite hoop tournament in the Midwest. Feeling outmatched by many of the high profile teams, the kids are still looking forward to a good time. However, Coach Barkley, who played college ball in the area and is still regarded as a hero, has other ideas. As usual, nothing but winning will be good enough for Coach. As the tournament progresses, the Magic players learn to believe in themselves and come to realize that they can hold their own against the opposing teams. And then, just as the team seems to have a shot at making the finals, the eligibility of one of their players is questioned and they face disqualification. Will the team spirit the road trip has instilled be strong enough to get the kids over this hurdle? Book 5 in the series.

Secret Signs

Jacqueline Guest (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551436012

The Depression has ruined Henry Dafoe's life: his father has left the family farm to look for work, his mother is sick and now she's decided to send Henry to Nova Scotia to work on his uncle's fishboat. But Henry has other ideas. He runs away from home to join his father, which proves more difficult than he imagined. Alone and scared in a strange city, he befriends an old hobo named Clickety Clack, who agrees to take him to find his father. As they make their way across the country, Clickety Clack teaches Henry about the secret signs that hoboes use to communicate with each other.

Racing for Diamonds

Anita Daher (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551436777

Jaz lives in the small northern community of Destiny and is a new member of the Junior Canadian Rangers. Her divorced parents argue a lot, and Jaz hopes if she wins a dog-mushing derby, they will be so proud of her they will stop arguing. But the derby would be a lot more fun if she wasn't paired with Colly, an older boy who is a more experienced JCR. On the derby trail all Jaz's newfound skills, her will to survive and her ability to get along with Colly, are put to a life-and-death test.

Poachers in the Pingos

Anita Daher (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554690121

When Junior Canadian Rangers, Colly and Jaz, visit Colly's uncle on Canada's Arctic coast, they are quick to discover something is amiss. Someone has been hunting gyrfalcons, the official bird of the Northwest Territories. Could it be poachers? During a pretend emergency, Colly and Jaz put two and five together and end up in a terrifying race for their lives!

Runaway

Becky Citra (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551434421

Max is horrified when he sees Sam Black, a new neighbor, strike a boy who is in his charge, but Max still shouts, "Thief," and tries to catch the boy when he sees him steal from the General Store in The Landings. When the abused boy runs away and takes refuge in Max's secret fort in the woods, Max must decide where his loyalties lie. In the fourth volume of her historical series set in Upper Canada in the 1830s, Becky Citra tackles the serious subject of abuse while staying true to her characters and telling a gripping story.

Jesse's Star

Ellen Schwartz (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551433738

Jesse's project about his immigrant ancestors is due tomorrow and he hasn't started. In a last-ditch effort to find some information about his great-great grandfather, Yossi, Jesse rummages through the mess in the attic until he finds a little battered travel case, full of pictures, and something else - a Star of David. At first it looks plain and unimportant, but as he holds it in his hand, the star begins to glow. Jesse is in for the surprise, and adventure, of his life as he finds himself becoming the star's first owner, his own great-great grandfather. Now a boy in Russia in the 1880s, Yossi lives in a little village, watched over by thieving soldiers who hate the Jewish community and often raid their crops before they can be stored for the winter. The whole village prays for the opportunity to slip away from their Russian keepers and escape to Canada, a land where they can be free. And nobody, even his parents, think Yossi is old enough to be of any help. But Yossi is out to prove them all wrong. If his plan works, he will set the whole village free. And he must do it alone. An adventure story for young readers, Jesse's Star is also a compelling history of one family's struggle to be free in the new world.

Long Shot

Eric Walters (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551433998

When Nick and Kia arrive for try-outs for the basketball team they played on the previous year, they are surprised to learn that their coach is retiring. The surprises continue when the new coach is introduced. Coach Barkley, a former college star known for his fierce desire to win, missed out on a pro career due to a serious injury. Though the coach has been away from the game for many years, his competitive instincts are as strong as ever and his aggressive coaching techniques are a new experience for these kids. Practices are long and hard and not nearly as much fun as they used to be. Suddenly making the rep team no longer seems the sure thing that Nick and Kia expected when they came to try-outs. The new coach expects near perfection from the youngsters and does not deal well with anything less. This is hard on Nick and Kia, but especially difficult for the coach's son, L.B., who is also trying out for the team.When the coach matches them up against a team of older players and then refuses to accept their loss, the kids begin to wonder if they even want to make this team. Nick, Kia and L.B. finally have to decide whether to play for a tyrant or to take a stand on principle and face the consequences. Book 4 in the series.

Murphy & Mousetrap

Sylvia Olsen (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551438320

Murphy's mother has just moved him and their cat, Mousetrap, back to the reserve in Port Alberni. Although he belongs to the Nuu-chah-nulth Nation, Murphy is sure that he won't fit in, and he worries about Mousetrap, who has always been an indoor cat. When a bunch of local boys drag him to their soccer practice, put him in goal and pelt him with balls, he believes that his worst fear has come true. However, he seems to be discovering a new talent at the same time. And perhaps he has misjudged. Being a light-skinned city boy thrust onto a reserve far from the city is not easy, but maybe Murphy has what it takes.

Off Season

Eric Walters (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551434117

Readers of Hoop Crazy will remember Ned as the bug-loving beanpole who lives in an isolated national park out West, three hours from the nearest basketball court. But Ned's participation in the three-on-three tournament when he visited Nick has sparked his interest in the game and now he and his father have built their own basketball court in the wilderness. And Ned's hoop skills have improved considerably. Nick and Kia are just beginning to get the hang of life in the wilderness when disaster strikes. A raging forest fire threatens to destroy Ned's home and cut off their escape.

Jo's Journey

Nikki Tate (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551435381

It's 1861 and orphan Jo has made it from Carson City, Nevada, to San Francisco without anyone figuring out that she's a girl in boy's clothing. When she hears talk of gold strikes in the Cariboo, Jo and her friend Bart sign on for what turns out to be a journey far more arduous and dangerous than anything Jo experienced as a Pony Express rider. Through it all, Jo keeps her true identity a secret. Strong men turn back but Jo forges ahead, unsure of what lies ahead but sure that her father and mother would be proud of her determination.