With the help of her sister and friend Austin, 12-year-old Anya puts together a kids' summer theater troupe, the Random Farms Kids' Theater, recruiting area kids as actors and crew members for a musical revue. Acting as director, Anya navigates the ups and downs of a showbiz life, including preparing scripts, finding a venue, and handling ticket sales, not to mention calming the actors' insecurities and settling conflicts. It's a lot of responsibility for a 12-year-old but Anya pulls it off. Book 2 opens two days later. Now after a successful first show, Anya turns her attention to the troupe's second show. But trouble rears its head almost immediately when their beloved barn venue is jeopardized. How can they put on a production without a theater? Is the second show doomed before they ever start rehearsal? This series is closely based on the real-life experience of Anya Wallach, who began a summer theater "camp" in her parents' basement when she was just sixteen years old.
Meet Stella Batts. She's in third grade, she wants to be a writer, and her parents own a wonderful candy shop. Life should be good, right? And now she's back and ready to start writing her eighth book about her favorite subject--her life! In Superstar, Stella gets the chance to audition for her favorite television show, Superstar Sam, after a casting director spots Stella out for dinner with her family. He said she is perfect for the role. Stella rehearses her lines until she knows the part by heart. Her little sister, Penny, is jealous but sometimes older sisters get to do things little sisters can't. But the audition doesn't go as planned. Stella was sure she had the part. Now will she ever get a chance to show her acting skills and meet her favorite actress?
Eleven-year-old Kaden has managed to stay under the radar for most of his life. With the exception of Kubla, a pet crow, Kaden doesn't have any friends his own age and he's okay with that. After all, friends can ask inconvenient questions. Questions like Why do you live with your grandmother and where is your father? Questions Kaden doesn't want to answer. Apart from school and a few trips to town, Kaden and Gram keep to themselves, living a simple life at their cabins outside the small community of Promise. But now Kaden's life is getting a lot more complicated. He's starting middle school, which brings its own set of problems for a boy who doesn't fit in. And then he learns that his father, a man he has never known, is getting out of prison and moving to Promise. After years of being the outsider at school, Kaden is given a chance to come out of his shell when Yo-Yo, a new boy, moves to the area and offers friendship. But can Kaden trust him? Will Yo-Yo be a real friend after he learns about Kaden's father? The true meaning of friendship, love, responsibility, and loyalty is explored in this novel for middle-grade readers.
Each paperback in this series features a trio of fictional stories highlighting a moment in American history. Troubled Times contains three stories focusing on the Great Depression. In The Lucky Star a girl helps her sister and other children learn to read when their school is closed. Rudy Rides the Rails features a boy living the hobo life. In Junk Man's Daughter, a family struggles after moving to the United States.
Thirteen-year-old Quest (Q) isn't sure he's ready for a new family. For a long time it's just been him and his mom, Blaze. But everything changes when Blaze falls in love with Roger and they start a new rock band called Match. Now they're married, have a hit record, and Match is going out on a year-long driving tour across the country. Q, along with new stepsister Angela, will take a year off from school and travel with the band. For now, home will be a luxury motor coach and homework will be a Web site diary of their travels. Perfect-Q can practice his magic tricks and Angela can read her spy novels. What can go wrong? As Q and Angela settle into their new life and new relationship as siblings, they start to notice that certain coincidences don't seem coincidental. For example, how does a band roadie named Boone find them in the middle of a desert where their coach just happens to break down? Why does a man from their parents' wedding keep showing up in the same cities they stop at? When they reach Philadelphia, Q and Angela realize this tour is definitely not the trip their parents had planned and that the "City of Brotherly Love" is full of mysteries and secrets that could threaten their new life together. Book 1 in the series.
In Book One: Independence Hall, we met Q and his stepsister, Angela. We met their rocker parents, Blaze and Roger; we met the Secret Service team protecting the family; and we met the main players of the Mossad team that is following them. Book Two takes us on another thrilling caper, this time to the White House where Q and Angela continue their quest to uncover the truth behind the supposed death of Angela's real mother--a former Secret Service agent--while trying to differentiate the "good guys" from the "bad guys." Book 2 in the series.
The president's daughter has been kidnapped by the elusive and lethal Ghost Cell. Quest (Q) and Angela are in hot pursuit with vicious winds and blinding rain thwarting them at every turn. It's a desperate high stakes chase. But who is chasing whom? Are Q and Angela the hunters or the hunted? Book 3 in the series.
Voices for Freedom contains three stories focusing on the Underground Railroad and the 1963 Freedom March on Washington. Stories are Friend on Freedom River, Riding to Washington, and The Listeners. In Friend on Freedom River, written by Gloria Whelan, runaway slaves ask Louis to ferry them across the Detroit River to freedom in Canada. Hes not sure what to do. If they are caught, it means prison for Louis. Written by Gwenyth Swain, Riding to Washington tells of one girls journey to attend the 1963 Great March on Washington. Janie and her father ride a bus to Washington, D.C. to hear a man named Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. speak. During the trip, Janie sees firsthand the injustices that many others endure. In The Listeners, another offering from Gloria Whelan, each night Ella May and her friends secretly listen outside the windows of their masters house. They listen to learn their fates and those of the other slaves.
Fresh off a "too close" encounter with the terrorist group, the Ghost Cell, in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, Q and Angela head to San Antonio, Texas. As their parents' band, Match, prepares for a concert at the Alamo, the two discover that the Ghost Cell has its tentacles everywhere, including the Lone Star State. With each passing hour, Q and Angela uncover more clues and discover more leads. And the mysterious Boone and his SOS group leave them with more questions than answers, for there is much more to Boone than meets the eye. With time running out to stop another Ghost Cell attack, Angela and Q and the others begin to wonder. Are they following the Ghost Cell or is the Ghost Cell following them? Book 4 in the series.
Each paperback in this series features a trio of fictional stories highlighting a moment in history, with content taken from our popular Tales of Young Americans picture-book series. The Battles contains three stories focusing on key American battles: the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, and the Civil War. The Scarlet Stockings Spy is set during the Revolutionary War. In Philadelphia 1777, childhood games now become life-and-death actions for Maddy Rose and her Patriot soldier brother, as British spies are everywhere. In The Town that Fooled the British, the War of 1812 comes to life when the British target St. Michaels, Maryland, in their campaign to defeat America. But a young boy's quick thinking helps the town escape destruction. The Last Brother is set on the battlefields of Gettysburg where Gabe, a Union Army bugler, meets and befriends Orlee, a young Confederate bugler. Now, with the battle looming ahead of him, Gabe is conflicted about what to do.
It's 1863 and 10-year-old Emmy Blue Hatchett has been told by her father that soon their family will leave their farm, family, and friends in Illinois, and travel west to a new home in Colorado. It's difficult leaving family and friends behind. They might not see one another ever again. When Emmy's grandmother comes to say goodbye, she gives Emmy a special gift to keep her occupied on the trip. The journey by wagon train is long and full of hardships. But the Hatchetts persevere and reach their destination in Colorado, ready to start their new life.
Westward Journeys contains three stories focusing on the American westward expansion, including the Oregon Trail and the Oklahoma Land Run. In Minnow and Rose, Rose and her family are traveling with a wagon train heading west on the Oregon Trail. When she encounters Minnow, a young native girl, their meeting has life-changing results for both cultures. The Oklahoma Land Run is the topic in Pappy's Handkerchief. When Moses and his family hear of free farmland out in Oklahoma, they head west to fulfill a lifelong dream of owning their own land. After a difficult wagon trip, they arrive at the staging point for the Oklahoma Land Run. In A Book for Black-Eyed Susan, Cora's family is faced with tragedy during their journey on the Oregon Trail. When Cora learns she is to be separated from her baby sister, she creates a memento of their journey together.
In 1850 the Detroit River was a major track along the Underground Railroad -- the last step to freedom. The journey across the river was dangerous, especially in winter and especially for a 12-year-old boy. When Louis's father left him in charge of the farm he offered his son this advice, "If you don't know what to do, just do what you think I would have done." Louis relies upon his father's words of wisdom when a runaway slave and her two children come looking for safe passage.
It's bad enough being the new kid, but as a freshman, Jimmy finds school less enjoyable than many of his classmates. Standing 5'5" and weighing 187 pounds, he's subjected to a daily barrage of taunts and torments. His only sources of comfort are his family, his youth group, and his favorite foods. When his English teacher assigns a journal as a writing project, Jimmy chronicles not only his struggles but also his aspirations - to lose weight and win the girl of his dreams. Inspired by a true story and told in first-person journal entries, The Fat Boy Chronicles brings to life the pain and isolation felt by many overweight teenagers as they try to find their way in a world obsessed with outward beauty.