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The Edmund Fitzgerald: The Song of the Bell

Kathy-jo Wargin (author), Gijsbert van Frankenhuyzen (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627531290

Leaving port from Superior, Wisconsin on a sunny November day, the crew of the Edmund Fitzgerald is looking forward to a routine crossing of deep Lake Superior. Heading for a port in Cleveland, the giant transport ship is loaded with ore that will be used to build cars. But disaster is building in the wind as a gale storm begins to track after the great ship. This suspenseful retelling of the last hours of the doomed vessel pays homage to all sailors who traverse deep waters, in fair skies and foul. Atmospheric paintings from award-winning artist Gijsbert van Frankenhuyzen bring the story to life.

Penny: The Forgotten Coin

Denise Brennan-Nelson (author), Michael Glenn Monroe (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627531306

Found by a young boy and placed into his pocket for safekeeping, Penny feels useless compared to the exciting Superball, the shiny Marble, the adventuresome Rock, and the colorful Bubblegum. But as she reminisces about her life and history, she realizes her worth, and it is reinforced by the young boy's need for her in an important decision.

P is for Pinata: A Mexico Alphabet

Tony Johnston (author), John Parra (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627531337

The country of Mexico has long been a popular travel destination. But there's much more to enjoy and appreciate than just sunshine and warm temperatures when exploring this region with its ancient history and proud traditions. Enjoy an A-Z tour of our neighbor to the south in P is for Piata: A Mexico Alphabet. Young readers can visit the tomb of a Mayan king, experience the life of the vaquero (Mexican cowboy), attend the world-famous Ballet Folklrico de Mxico, and sample the everyday treat that was once known as the "food of the gods." From folk art to famous people to the original "hot dog," the treasures of Mexico are revealed in P is for Piata. Vibrant artwork perfectly captures the flavor, texture, and spirit of its landscape and culture.To find recipes, games, interactives maps and much more for this title visit www.discovertheworldbooks.com!

Smudge and the Book of Mistakes: A Christmas Story

Gloria Whelan (author), Stephen Costanza (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627530996

The monastery of St. Ambrose is situated on the Irish island of Morcarrick. Here, monks old and young live quiet lives spent in prayer and service. One day the Abbot decides that Brother Bede, their finest illuminator of manuscripts, will illustrate the Christmas story. It will be magnificent, praised throughout the world (as will St. Ambrose). Unfortunately, young Brother Cuthbert has been chosen to assist Brother Bede in this project. Cuthbert is impatient, lacks discipline, and even worse--is known for making mistakes. His nickname is "Smudge." How can someone so ill-suited assist in the creation of the greatest book of all? Award-winning author Gloria Whelan shows that sometimes, when given the right task, someone's greatest weakness can prove to be his greatest strength.

T is for Twin Cities: A Minneapolis/St. Paul Alphabet

Helen L. Wilbur, Nancy Carlson (author), David Geister (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627531047

The Twin Cities region of Minnesota has long been recognized as a hub of history, culture, commerce, and education. Now in T is for Twin Cities: A Minneapolis/St. Paul Alphabet, readers can explore the many treasures the area has to offer. Visit the celebrated state capitol building in St. Paul, which was modeled after Saint Peter's Basilica in Rome. Meet cartoonist Charles Schulz of "Peanuts" fame and "Prairie Home Companion" radio personality Garrison Keillor, just a few of the famous Minnesotans profiled. And learn why Minneapolis is called the "City of Lakes" while enjoying the Twin Cities region's many outdoor recreational opportunities.

No Year of the Cat

Mary Dodson Wade (author), Nicole Wong (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627531078

The Emperor has a problem. He wants his people to remember the year in which his son was born. But there is no way to keep track of the years. So the Emperor devises a race in which animals will cross a river. The first twelve animals to reach the opposite side will have a year named after them. Thus, the people will be able to remember the years and the events that occurred. And so the race is set. Rat, knowing he is no match for the rushing water, schemes with Cat on how to cross the river. Together the two convince Ox to carry them across. But halfway across the river, Rat shows his true colors. Will Cat make it to the other side? Which animals will have a year named after them? Accompanied by exquisite watercolor artwork, this charming story explains the origins of the Chinese calendar.

The American Reader

Kathy-jo Wargin (author), K. L. Darnell (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627536431

We often sing the "Star Spangled Banner," but what do the words mean? Why did Franklin Delano Roosevelt stay in office longer than any other U.S. president? Following the style of an old-fashioned primer, The American Reader answers such questions as it gives children a modern, well-rounded view of what it means to be a good citizen. Captivating prose, poems, short stories, and games entertain as they teach about the diverse regions of our country, the history of the Pledge of Allegiance, the story of Clara Barton, and the official nicknames for each of our states. A story about Smokey Bear promotes an appreciation of nature and the need to protect it, and another explains how to be helpful and respectful to people with disabilities. The American Reader's lively variety and broad scope will give children of all ages much to learn, think about and enjoy for hours on end.

Voices for Freedom

Gwenyth Swain, Gloria Whelan (authors), David Geister, Gijsbert Van Frankenhuyzen (illustrators)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627530545

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.

D is for Drum: A Native American Alphabet

Debbie Shoulders, Michael Shoulders (authors), Irving Toddy (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627536363

Did you know that natives of the Northwest used dried sharkskin to sand totem poles? Or that horses were called medicine dogs, because dogs had been used to aid in hunting before horses were introduced by Europeans? In "D is for Drum: A Native America Alphabet," readers will get an A-Z introduction to the many customs and cultures of the first people of this beautiful land. Bison, teepees, Kachinas and dugout canoes will all help to paint a fascinating picture of the more than 500 indigenous tribes inhabiting the Americas.

The Battles

Trinka Hakes Noble, Lisa Papp (author), Robert Papp (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627530156

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.

Welcome to America, Champ

Catherine Stier (author), Doris Ettlinger (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627530170

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.

The Quilt Walk

Sandra Dallas (author)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627530163

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

Judy Young Devin Scillian (author), Chris Ellison Bill Farnsworth (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627530187

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.

F is for French: A Quebec Alphabet

Elaine Arsenault (author), Renn Benoit (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627530019

Founded in 1608, what city is one of the oldest in North America? Where and when was Canada's first road built? What world-famous circus was the inspiration of Baie-Saint-Paul street performers? Discover the answers to these questions, along with other facts, in F is for French: A Quebec Alphabet. Readers young and old can romp the sandy beaches of Les Iles de la Madeleine, visit Montreal's Space for Life (Canada's largest natural science museum complex), brave the arctic cold in the Nunavik region, or sit back and enjoy the music at one of the many performances taking place at the Montreal International Jazz Festival. This richly illustrated alphabet book is bilingual. A poem and informative sidebar text for each letter appears in French with an English translation.

Paper Son: Lee's Journey to America

Virginia Shin Mui Loh, Helen Foster James (author), Wilson Ong (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627530118

In 1926, 12-year-old Fu Lee lives with his grandparents in a small village in China. He lives with his grandparents because his parents are dead. It is a difficult life but made easier by the love Lee shares with his grandparents. But now Lee must leave all that he knows. Before his parents died, they spent all of their money buying a "paper son slot" for Lee to go to America. Being a "paper son" means pretending to be the son of a family already in America. If he goes, he will have the chance for a better life. But first he must pass the test at Angel Island Immigration Station in San Francisco. Only then will he be allowed to live with his new family. If Lee makes even a single mistake, he could be sent back to China. Lee knows his grandparents want a better life for him. He can't let them down.

T is for Territories: A Yukon, Northwest Territories, and Nunavut Alphabet

Michael Kusugak (author), Iris Churcher (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627530132

In T is for Territories: A Yukon, Northwest Territories, and Nunavut Alphabet, acclaimed storyteller Michael Kusugak gives an A-Z tour of Canada's three territories, the northern region of the country that is a giant in size, history, and culture. Young readers can kick up their heels at the Arctic Winter Games with sports such as the one-foot high-kick, listen to world-renowned storytellers at Whitehorse's International Storytelling Festival, or experience Wood Buffalo National Park where sometimes visitors have to stop and wait for wildlife to get out of the way. Everyone will enjoy this alphabetical journey that showcases the riches of the territories.

D is for Down Under: An Australia Alphabet

Devin Scillian (author), Geoff Cook (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781585366002

What country holds the title as the world's smallest continent and yet the world's largest island? I stands for island, but one that's not too small. Our island is enormous. Just try to see it all! There's no place else quite like it; that is clearly true. Australia is a continent, but it's an island, too. Originally founded as a penal colony, Australia has long been known for its contrasts (think: wild outback and sophisticated Sydney Opera House). Accompanied by vibrant colorful artwork, D is for Down Under: An Australia Alphabet captures the spirit of this proud country and its many treasures, natural and man-made. Visit spectacular Sydney Harbor, try your hand as a jackaroo working a sheep station, or just sit back and enjoy a Vegemite sandwich. Below the starry night glitter of the Southern Cross constellation, Australia's "down under" wonders shine brightly. Devin Scillian is an award-winning author and Emmy-award-winning broadcast journalist. His books with Sleeping Bear Press include the national bestseller A is for America: An American Alphabet. Devin lives in Michigan and anchors the news for WDIV-TV in Detroit. Geoff Cook has been illustrating for 35 years. His career began as a graphic designer, after graduating from Prahran College in Melbourne. Soon realizing he wanted to be an illustrator, he became a partner in the illustration studio All Australian Graffiti. He lives in Australia.

K is for Kabuki: A Japan Alphabet

Jennifer Nolan, Gloria Whelan (author), Oki S. Han (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781585365999

Judo, origami, sushi - with just a few words an immediate landscape is conjured: the country of Japan. In K is for Kabuki: A Japan Alphabet, young readers are invited to travel to faraway Japan and explore its rich history, traditions, and role in today's world. Evocative artwork captures the spirit of each letter topic. O is for Origami A paper frog, a paper tree, a paper sunflower just for me, a paper fox, a paper shrew, a paper tiger just for you. From the comic relief of Kyogen theater to the meditative powers of a Zen garden, K is for Kabuki brings the past, present, and pageantry of Japan to life.To find recipes, games, interactives maps and much more for this title visit www.discovertheworldbooks.com! Gloria Whelan is the award-winning author of many children's books including Homeless Bird, for which she received the National Book Award. She lives in Michigan. A librarian by profession, Jenny Nolan has worked for The New Yorker and Rolling Stone magazines and as a researcher for investigative reporters. She lives in Michigan. Oki S. Han's book, Basho and the Fox, was a New York Times best-seller. Her books, Mr. Long Beard and My Hometown, both won the Korea Children's Book Award. In 2005 Oki was selected as Illustrator of the Year at the Bologna Children's Book Fair for My Hometown. She lives in Korea.

The Listeners

Gloria Whelan (author)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781585365968

Ella May lives on a plantation but she doesn't live in the great house. She is a slave. It's dark in the morning when Ella May heads to the fields to pick cotton. And it's sunset when she comes home. But her day isn't done, not yet. Ella May still has important work to do. She's got to listen. Each night Ella May and her friends secretly listen outside the windows of their master's house. The children listen in the hopes of gleaning information about their fates and those of their loved ones. Who will be sold? Who will stay? The lives of slaves depended on the inclinations of their owners. They had no control over their daily lives or futures. But they could dream. And when the promise of freedom appears on the horizon, the children are the first to hear it.

B is for Blue Crab: A Maryland Alphabet

Shirley C. Menendez (author), Laura Stutzman (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781585366378

Located just below the Mason-Dixon line, Maryland is flavored with both northern and southern culture and tradition. Defined by the largest estuary in the United States (The Chesapeake Bay), Maryland's historic sites/sights include capital city Annapolis and the U.S. Naval Academy, Muddy Creek Falls, and the running of the Preakness Stakes in Baltimore. Noteworthy residents include Harriet Tubman and Francis Scott Key.

Pappy's Handkerchief

Devin Scillian (author), Chris Ellison (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781410310033

Young Moses and his family are barely scraping by. He helps his father in their fish stall selling each day's catch to passersby but times are hard in 1889 Baltimore. It's difficult to provide for a family of ten. But when they hear of free farmland out in Oklahoma, it sounds like the answer to their prayers. The family sells all they own and heads west to fulfill a lifelong dream. Their wagon journey, however, is plagued with troubles from ice storms and flooded rivers to diminishing supplies and sickness. Yet Moses and his family persevere. They arrive in time to take a place along the boundary line that marks the staging point for the Oklahoma Land Run. But after making it this far, will even more bad luck prevent them from realizing their dream of owning their own piece of America?

I is for Island: A Prince Edward Island Alphabet

Hugh MacDonald (author), Brenda Jones (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781410310125

Located in the Gulf of St. Lawrence on the east coast of Canada, Prince Edward Island measures only 5,660 sq.km. But what this island province lacks in size, it more than makes up for in abundant natural beauty, as well the scope of its influence on Candian history.

The Last Brother: A Civil War Tale

Trinka Hakes Noble (author), Robert Papp (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781410365767

In July 1863 the bloodiest battle of the Civil War was fought outside the sleepy Pennsylvania town of Gettysburg. In The Last Brother the story of one small boy is told amidst the dramatic events of those early days of July. Though he is only 11 years old, Gabe is a bugler in the Union Army. He takes his responsibility very seriously; after all, there are over 60 different battle calls for buglers to learn. But what is even more important to Gabe is watching over his older brother Davy who, as a foot soldier, is right in the thick of the fighting. Two of Gabe's older brothers have already perished, and he is not willing to lose the only one he has left. During those long days, Gabe meets another young bugler -- one who fights for the other side. Suddenly, what was so definite and clear has become complicated by friendship and compassion. Does one have to choose between service to country, to kin or to a friend? As the cannons fire and the battle rages on, Gabe must do his duty while searching for a way to honor all that he holds dear.

The Scarlet Stockings Spy

Trinka Hakes Noble (author), Robert Papp (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781410365743

Philadelphia 1777 is no place for the faint of heart. The rumble of war with the British grows louder each day, and spies for and against the Patriots are everywhere. No one is above suspicion. Still, everyday life must go on and young Maddy Rose must help her mother, especially since her father's death at the Battle of Princeton and now with her beloved brother Jonathan off with Washington's army. But when childhood games become life-and-death actions, Maddy Rose is drawn ever deeper into events that will explode beyond her imagining. As young America stands on the very brink of its fight for freedom, it becomes clear that even the smallest of citizens can play the largest of parts, and that the role of a patriot has nothing to do with age and everything to do with heart.

The Christmas Tree Ship

Carol Crane (author), Chris Ellison (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781410365750

On November 21, 1912, the schooner Rouse Simmons set sail from a small northern Michigan town across Lake Michigan. Affectionately dubbed the "Christmas Tree Ship," this was an annual trek for the Rouse Simmons. With its cargo of Christmas trees, the ship was bound for Chicago. There Captain Herman Scheunemann would sell the trees for 50 cents or $1.00 and even gave many away to needy families. But the schooner never makes its destination. The Rouse Simmons, with all hands and cargo, disappears into the cold waters. The ship's wreckage is not found until 1971. Drawing from stories told by her grandfather, author Carol Crane weaves a fictional tale based on the true events of the doomed schooner. And she explains how the captain's widow went on to continue his tradition of delivering holiday trees to Chicago.