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Any Pet Will Do

Nancy Shouse (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551438238

Jeremy longs for a pet, but he doesn't know what kind of pet to get. When his parents agree that he can start a pet-sitting business in order to try out a variety of species, Jeremy has no idea what adventures are in store for him. Pet after pet is eliminated from his "To Get" list. In the end, not a single animal seems suited - until a favorite relative comes up with a surprising solution.

After Peaches

Michelle Mulder (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554691777

Ten-year-old Rosario Ramirez and her family are political refugees from Mexico, trying to make a new life in Canada. After being teased at school, Rosario vows not to speak English again until she can speak with an accent that's one hundred percent Canadian. Since she and her parents plan to spend the whole summer working on BC fruit farms, she will be surrounded by Spanish speakers again. But when her family's closest friend Jose gets terribly sick, Rosario's plans start to unravel. Neither Jose nor Rosario's parents speak English well enough to get him the help he needs. Like it or not, Rosario must face her fears about letting her voice be heard.

Addison Addley and the Things That Aren't There

Melody DeFields McMillan (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551439518

Addison Addley hates math. He hates public speaking too. Actually, he hates anything that involves work, but he only has a couple of weeks to write and memorize his grade five speech. The problem is, he can't think of a single topic. When he finally comes up with an excellent idea for a speech, it almost writes itself, but it's his poor math skills that make speech day unforgettable.

Addy's Race

Debby Waldman (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554699254

Addy has worn hearing aids for as long as she can remember. Her mother tells her this makes her special, but now that Addy's in grade six, she wants to be special for what she's done. When Addy joins the school running club to keep her best friend, Lucy, company, she discovers she is a gifted runner. Lucy isn't, which is problematic. Further troubles surface when Addy gets paired on a school project with Sierra, a smart, self-assured new classmate who wears a cochlear implant. Addy is surprised to discover hearing loss is all they have in common and a shared disability is not enough of a foundation for a friendship. True friends support each other, even if they have different passions and dreams. More importantly, Addy comes to understand that she is defined by more than her hearing loss. She has the power to choose how people will see her, and she does.

Grandpa's Clock

Rachna Gilmore (author), Amy Meissner (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551438054

"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.

Something's Fishy

Jeff Szpirglas (author), Dave Whamond (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554697885

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.

Seeing Orange

Sara Cassidy (author), Amy Meissner (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554699964

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.

Ben the Inventor

Robin Stevenson (author), David Parkins (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554698035

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.

Wildcat Run

Sonya Bates (author), Kasia Charko (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554698318

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?

The Snowball Effect

Deb Loughead (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554693726

Dylan and his friends snowball cars for entertainment on the weekend. When they don't get enough reaction from passing cars, they put rocks in the middle of their snowballs. Their first attack with the loaded snowballs causes a car crash. His friends flee, but Dylan goes to the scene of the accident to make sure the driver is okay. He runs off when he knows help is on the way. Dylan is sighted, and rather than being punished, he is lauded as a hero. As his lies pile up, so does the hype about his heroics, and along with it, Dylan's guilt.