During World War II thousands of American servicemen were stationed overseas in various countries. It is in England that American GI Jack Ricker meets and marries an English widow with a nine-year-old son, Thomas. Thomas likes his new stepfather and he's hopeful about their future. But now with the war over, Jack is back in America. Thomas and his mother make plans to leave England and join him. Thomas is apprehensive about moving. He won't know anyone, apart from Jack. In America, they play baseball and not cricket. Will he fit in? Thomas and his mother find themselves on a trans-Atlantic voyage on the Queen Mary, sailing to America and a new life. They're not alone; hundreds of other "Brides and Babies" are on board, making the same trip with the same dreams. When Thomas helps another passenger handle feelings of homesickness, he realizes he is prepared to start his new American life.
Elena lives near a small town in western Guatemala. She lives there with her mother, her younger brother, Luis, and her baby sister, Ana. Her father is far away, working on a plantation. Elena struggles to keep up in school. Her teacher says she needs to practice her reading, but it's hard to find time to read. She must help her mother with the cooking and housework, as well as the hard work of planting and weeding their garden. As the big sister Elena is also in charge of watching over Luis to keep him out of mischief. It isn't always easy and she gets impatient with her little brother. But at the end of the day, when Elena shares a book with Luis, carefully sounding out the words, she comes to better understand and appreciate her role in the family.
Mother shares a book about love while Brother shares a book about friendship. Next Aunt Grace shares a book about adventure. Everyone in this family is eager to share books and have the newest member's affection and attention. But all kidding aside, this family knows the bond that is created when reading aloud with someone you love. When Daddy closed the last page, he smiled at me for hours and said, 'Say Daddy! Say Daddy!' He hoped that would be my first word! But wait. Did we hear correctly? 'Book,' I said. 'Book!'
Ten-year-old Walking Turtle is of the Lenni Lenape tribe. He lives with his family in a small village alongside the Passaic River in what will become northern New Jersey. They have a relatively peaceful life, with nature offering up a bounty of resources for food and shelter, amply meeting their needs. Walking Turtle is close to his younger cousin, Little Talk. He feels protective of Little Talk, who has difficulty walking. Together they roam the forests near their village, with Walking Turtle carrying his cousin on his back. But in the autumn of Walking Turtle's tenth year, his father tells him that soon he must leave childhood friends behind and begin warrior school. Walking Turtle worries about what will become of Little Talk when he leaves for his training. And what is his future?
It is 1933 and the Great Depression has ravaged the nation. Millions of people are out of work; thousands of families are struggling to keep a roof overhead and food on the table. But Momma still finds ways to count her blessings (lucky stars) from Ruth's new shoes to Poppa's new job. But where Momma sees the 'bright,' Ruth only sees the dark. Her shoes are hand-me-downs from a neighbor and Poppa's new job keeps him away from home for months. And now their town can't afford to keep the school open. Ruth will not be going to fourth grade even though she's one of the brightest students in her class. How can anyone find the good in that? But when Ruth stops thinking of her own problems and focuses on someone else's, she realizes that being a lucky star is the best way to start seeing your own lucky stars.
In 1944 a vacant army base in upstate New York became the temporary home of over 900 men, women and children who had fled Europe towards the end of World War II. With little more than the clothing on their backs, Rebekkah and her mother are just two of the many refugees who come to live in the camp. Adjusting to a strange new world and a new language, Rebekkah puts aside her own fears to try and recreate tiny bits of home for her mother. A fictional story based on the real-life experiences of surviving refugees, Rebekkah's Journey shares the illuminating story of one refugee's arrival on America's shores.
April 1, 1946 - an enormous tsunami wave strikes Hilo, Hawai'i, causing death and destruction. Even those islanders who are fortunate to have survived find their lives forever altered. Young Kimo loves his grandfather very much - they go everywhere together, sharing island stories and experiences. But there is one story his grandfather has yet to share and that is the reason behind their yearly pilgrimage to Laupahoehoe Point. Here, in silent remembrance, Grandfather places a flower lei atop a stone monument. It is only after his grandfather's sudden death that Kimo learns the story behind their annual visit and the reason for the sadness that has haunted his grandfather throughout the years. Evocative writing brings this tragic event from Hawaiian history to present-day reality for young readers today.
When ten-year-old Cora and her family leave their home in Missouri, their hearts are filled with the hopes and dreams of a bright future gleaming with promise and opportunity. But the journey west by wagon train is harsh, and tragedy strikes swiftly and unexpectedly. Now Cora and her father must steel themselves for a different future from what they had carefully planned. How can they move forward when their hearts are broken? But move on they must, and Cora takes comfort in her new baby sister (named Susan after the black-eyed flowers). When Cora learns she and Susan are to be separated at the end of their journey, she looks to the past to help craft a link to their new lives. Judy Young is an award-winning author of children's fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. Her other books in the Tales of Young Americans series are Minnow and Rose (2010 Storytelling World Resource Award) and The Lucky Star (2009 Storytelling World Honor Award). Judy lives near Springfield, Missouri. Doris Ettlinger graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design and has numerous picture books to her credit, including the award-winning The Orange Shoes. Doris lives and teaches in an old grist mill on the banks of the Musconetcong River in western New Jersey.
The Hola, English! series provides children with reasons to talk and things they will want to talk about. In Sleepy Barker, Barker the dog is awakened by one sound after another (howl, hoot, boom) but finally falls asleep after being reassured that mom and dad are there for him.
Nine-year-old Skye has always had a fascination with flying. She’d love to be a pilot someday, like both of her parents, but deep down she really wishes she could be a bird. When Skye’s parents take her to Costa Rica, she is thrilled about all of the beautiful exotic birds she’ll get to see. What she doesn’t realize is that her parents have three big surprises planned, and each will offer her a different opportunity to feel what it’s like to fly. From snorkeling with baby sea turtles to parasailing out on the open ocean to zip-lining through the Costa Rican rainforest, Skye will have more than one chance to fly like a bird before this trip of a lifetime is through
Confident that her scrapbook will win first prize, Madison is upset when Jonathan wins instead. With consolation from her parents and Courage, her toy lion, she does the right thing and congratulates Jonathan on his success.
When a very large baby is left on the steps of Town Hall, the villagers decide to raise the girl as their own. Oversized, but not under loved, Valentine wonders if there's a match for her anywhere in the world.
Hazel and her mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother all go to visit each other on Mother's Day. But where's great-great-grandmother?
Madison wants to ride her bike without training wheels, but after her first fall she loses confidence and doesn't want to try again. Her parents and Hope, her toy bluebird, urge her to keep practicing until she finally manages to ride without training wheels.
A comforting, rhyming story written to help children understand that a father's love is forever, even if they grow up without his presence in their lives.
Long, long ago, Johnny's grandpa found a bottle on the beach. When Johnny roots it out of the back of Grandpa's closet, he can see a mysterious shadow through the green glass. "We should break it," Johnny says. "Maybe later," says his grandpa. And so the story begins.
It's the most talked about trophy in Howling - The Wassabbee! And it goes to the winner of the annual fathers versus sons hockey game. This year the fathers are in trouble, so they've changed the rules. The game won't be played indoors. It's going to be held outside, at a weekend campout. In the middle of the winter! Johnny Maverick and his friends know the fathers are going to play a few tricks on them, so they decide to use all their genius to play the tricks first.
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.
Pierre, a pampered pooch, misses his friends, Sparky and Lou. But how will he ever find them? They live in a park on the other side of town. Pierre has a plan, and one afternoon while Miss Murphy naps, he slips out of their apartment and sets off to bring his friends home. Along the way, Pierre meets Old Wheezer and remembers Miss Murphy's words, "Dogs and people belong together." In the end, Pierre helps find a loving home for everyone.
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.
Silas is a small boy who finds a unique solution to keeping up with his seven adoring grandparents. Most of the time, Silas loves having seven grandparents. Each of them has something unique and valuable to offer. They take him to amusement parks, museums, dog shows and camping. When Silas' parents go away on a business trip, all seven grandparents invite Silas to stay with them. However, one Silas can't be with seven different grandparents at once. How can he choose one without hurting the others' feelings? But Silas comes up with an especially good idea that makes everyone feel included and happy.
"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.
Seven-year-old Christina desperately wants a dog. When she visits a kennel with her parents, she comes home with Prince, a greyhound recently retired from his champion racing career. Christina is thrilled and spends all her time with her new pal. They are like two peas in a pod. But one day, when Prince is left alone in the backyard, he escapes. Christina's mother searches everywhere for him only to find him at the schoolyard gate waiting for Christina. Promising never to leave him alone in the backyard again, her father brings home a little Chihuahua named Chancho. Now Prince will always have a companion to play with.
Sara loves her grandmother's bakery. It's a special place-not only because of its delicious Japanese buns and pastries. She enjoys spending time with her obaachan, her grandmother. But things aren't going well for the bakery. When the bakery's lucky cat statue goes missing, Sara wonders if the bakery's luck is gone for good. But then a mysterious cat appears in the backyard one night and inspires a plan. With the help of her friend, Jake, Sara just might find the statue and restore the bakery's lost luck.
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.