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.
When Nick and his pals suddenly find themselves short a man for the NBA-sponsored three-on-three tournament they plan to enter during the summer holidays, the solution seems simple enough. Nick, Kia and Mark are the key players on the team, so the fourth, though mandatory according to the rules, doesn't really have to be good at the game. A surprise visit from Nick's mother's cousin brings Ned, who is exactly Nick's age but not exactly an athlete, into the picture and onto the team. Nick and Ned, though related, are about as different as two boys born on the same day can be. And they don't get along. Nick cares mostly about sports and basketball is his passion. Ned is crazy about bugs and lives out West in a national park, three hours' drive from the nearest basketball court. The other three teammates figure that as long as they don't actually have to use Ned in a game they will be fine. Then Mark sprains his ankle and can't play in the tournament. Suddenly Nick and Kia must find a way to make Ned an integral part of the team. This turns out to be no small task!
After almost drowning in a swollen creek, Wes wonders if what his friend Zach says is true: Wes owes a life debt to the old lady who rescued him. It doesn't help that Wes keeps hearing his dead father's voice saying things like, "A man pays his debts, Wes," and "A man always treats a woman with respect, Wes." But how does a guy go about paying back a life debt anyway? And what if it involves a transmission tower, an ice-cream truck and a few sticks of dynamite?
When Molly learns a talent competition is coming to town, her friend Murphy (A Different Game, Murphy and Mousetrap) becomes her manager. Molly is certain she is a good singershe has been singing in her head for as long as she can remember. She doesn't sing out loud because of a promise she made to herself. Years ago, Molly vowed that her mom would be the first one to hear her sing. The only problem is, Molly knows nothing about her mom, who left when Molly was a baby. With the talent competition only weeks away, she has to decide whether to break her promise to herself and let her voice out into the world, or wait for her mother's uncertain return before singing for anyone else.
Life is hard enough for Tansy with her depressed mom away indefinitely and her dad making a mess of things at home. But then Dad sends her down the hall to a wrinkly old babysitter named Miss Stella, who Tansy hates on sight. Miss Stella has a unique perspective on life, to say the least, but with the help of her best friend Parveen, Tansy gradually learns to manage all the changes in her life and make unexpected new friends in the process.
Eleven-year-old Jake Reynolds wants to save seal pups from the talons of bald eagles, protect his little sister Sierra and confront the wolf he is sure stalks Hidalgo Island. But his best friend Emily calls him a chicken, comforts Sierra when she falls and doesn't believe the wolf exists. Even as Jake hears howling in the night, part of him hopes Emily is right; he may dream of being a hero, but he is terrified by the thought of running into a wolf. When Jake leads Emily into the woods in search of adventure, he finds more than he bargained for—and discovers things about himself that he never knew existed.
Elsie is about to have puppies, and Elizabeth is going to help. Her grandmother shows her exactly how to make the den for the dog and how to be ready when the puppies come out. After they are born, Elizabeth helps Elsie care for them. Most important of all, though, she helps her grandmother find just the right home for each, especially the very last one.
Kate has decided on a pirate theme for her party. She thinks that seven is going to be the best age to be. Her friend Jake is going to teach her to ride a two-wheeler. And her party is going to be fabulous. That is, until Violet starts spreading stories. Kate goes right on with her planning, but she is worried. When Violet is the only one to show up on the big day, Kate thinks that her worst fears have come true.
The Howling Timberwolves need to win the best two out of three hockey games to make it to the championship finals. But first Johnny Maverick has to survive a visit from his six-year-old cousin, Sarah. And not even Johnny's dog Marvin is safe. Worse, Johnny's got a big lesson to learn on the ice, too. As always, Johnny and Stu and Tom thing they have the answers. But, as usual, they are wrong.
When the Timberwolves get a new coach, they also get the coach's son. The only problem is that Eldridge Elwell is a terrible hockey player. The team is on the hunt to make the playoffs, and every time Eldridge plays a shift, it hurts the team more. Johnny Maverick is just as angry about it as anyone on the team, until he learns something important about the coach's son.
There's plenty of action both on and off the ice. At a big tournament in Calgary, teammate Tom Morgan plays a practical joke on Johnny Maverick, so naturally Johnny feels he has to pay him back. The rivalry escalates. After he scores a hat trick, Johnny is given a hockey stick signed by all the members of the Calgary Flames. He worries that Tom will do something to this prized trophy and decides he will not let it out of his sight. But in the end Tom outsmarts him one more time and Johnny learns that revenge is never a good idea.
More than anything else in the world, Ali wants a pet cat for her birthday. Unfortunately her brother Jay is allergic to cats. One day, Ali discovers that something is sharing her clubhouse with her. To Ali's delight, the new resident is a beautiful white cat, who she names Snowy. Ali thinks that the clubhouse is the perfect home for Snowy. But is she right and, more importantly, is Snowy really hers to keep?
In behind the raspberry bushes is a special place, a place Abby doesn't trust to just anyone. Then she looks through a knothole in the fence and right into a blue, blue eye. A toy tractor appears on her side of the fence and she pokes her little brother's stuffed blue monkey into the hole. The next morning she finds it with its tail ripped off. Who does the blue eye belong to?
Daisy has more toys than she knows what to do with. In this story, inspired by an Eastern European folktale about a house that's too small, Daisy thinks she needs a bigger bedroom for all the gifts on her birthday list. Her clever mom helps her realize less is more, and Daisy decides to donate many of her things to a Mitzvah Day rummage sale. In the process, Daisy learns about sharing and the satisfaction that comes from choosing what's important.
In this retelling of a Jewish folktale, Jacob tries to stump Rachel with his best riddles but fails repeatedly. When a young woman in need of help presents Rachel and Jacob with the trickiest riddles of all, they discover the only way to solve them is to work together.
Elliot Moose is on the loose once more. As he jumps aboard his bright red fire truck and takes off to the next rescue, he feels courageous. All his friends want to ride on the truck and be firefighters too. Nobody wants to be rescued. One by one,Elliot's friends climb aboard until there is no more room on the truck. When suddenly they all need a rescue for real, it is his two youngest and smallest friends who save the day. This lively new addition to the Elliot Moose series is a charming tale of friendship and fair play.
No matter how hard he tries, Ian Goobie can't do the things that the other children in his class can do. Then he finds a rock, a rock that fits perfectly into his pocket, a rock that touches all his senses and whisks him away into a whole other world. From then on, as long as he has a rock in his pocket, Ian Goobie can begin to cope with his daily challenges. That is until he stuffs so many rocks in his pockets that his pants fall down right outside in the schoolyard.
"Slow and steady," that's how you make a grandfather clock. Grandpa should know. He and Cayley have made nineteen clocks together. Now they are making Cayley's very own, a Lord Nelson. Then, one night, Cayley awakes to the sound of a siren. Grandpa is gone. Cayley is scared by what she sees when she is allowed to visit him in the hospital. But scared or not, she knows what Grandpa needs, and she tells him, "Slow and steady" as he heals. The Lord Nelson clock waits, patiently, to be finished.
Jamie loves sharks. He reads about them. He talks about them. Sometimes he even pretends to be a shark. Too bad no one else wants to join his Shark Club. His peers and parents are quickly growing tired of his current obsession. When Jamie's teacher, Mr. Claxton, brings in a new class pet, Jamie is put in charge. But Jamie has an accident while feeding it, and everyone becomes upset with him. He needs to find a way to make things right. In the end, he comes up with a solution that pleases both his teacher and classmates, a solution that also gives Jamie an opportunity to share his newest obsession--lizards.
Seven-year-old Leland has trouble writing, but he loves drawing. He so dislikes his teacher that he conjures up Delilah, an imaginary seeing-eye dog to help him into class each day. When a neighborhood painter recognizes Leland's gifts as an artist, Leland grows more confident about the world as he uniquely sees it. And when his family's cat goes missing, it is Leland's keen observation skills that lead to finding him. Leland's newfound confidence helps him both confront and sympathize with his teacher, who only wishes Leland could be a bit more focused.
Inventors invent inventions! That's what Ben and his best friend Jack like to say. So when Ben discovers that Jack's family is planning to move to another city, he decides they should put their inventions to work. The boys figure that if no one buys Jack's house, Jack won't have to move away, so all they need is a plan to scare off potential buyers! Inventors are good at coming up with plans. But when Plans A, B and C fail to bring the results the boys had hoped for, Ben discovers that not everything in life stays the same-and that while change can be hard, sometimes it isn't all bad.
Jake, Tommy and Lexie are on a ski trip. In an attempt to squeeze one last run in for the day, the kids head out on their own to ski down Easy Street. But Lexie and Jake convince Tommy to try Wildcat Run instead. Wildcat Run presents the young skiers with more than they expect, including a cougar sighting. When Lexie has a bad fall, the kids are left stranded on the hill in the fading daylight. Will they be rescued or will they have to spend the night alone on the mountain with a cougar?
Shelley arrives at her aunt and uncle's cottage on Grey Rocks Lake and is excited to see her cousin Kyle. Her excitement quickly turns to disappointed when she discovers Kyle's friend Marcus is staying at the cottage too. Shelley feels left out of the boys' games. Then the fossil she found at the beach goes missing, and she thinks Marcus took it. But when Topper, Kyle's dog, loses her ball, Shelley and Marcus are given an opportunity to become friends.
Cheetah is the small spotted frog Amelia brings home in a macaroni container. Amelia longs to keep Cheetah forever, but over the course of a week, she comes to understand that his place is back in the wild. Cheetah is based on a true story, and all the characters are real.
Lawrence hates being teased about his dimples, but nothing he does seems to make any difference. Joe goes right on teasing him, and the teasing gets meaner and meaner. Finally, Lawrence notices something about his friend Stewart that may provide the tool he needs to tease-proof himself once and for all.