Middle graders will laugh and cry with thirteen-year-old Vanessa Martin as she tries to be like Vanessa Williams, the first black Miss America. In this semi-autobiographical debut novel set in 1983, Vanessa Martin's real-life reality of living with family in public housing in Newark, New Jersey is a far cry from the glamorous Miss America stage. She struggles with a mother she barely remembers, a grandfather dealing with addiction and her own battle with self-confidence. But when a new teacher at school coordinates a beauty pageant and convinces Vanessa to enter, Vanessa's view of her own world begins to change. Vanessa discovers that her own self-worth is more than the scores of her talent performance and her interview answers, and that she doesn't need a crown to be comfortable in her own skin and see her own true beauty.
Europe seen through the eyes of an American - Mark Twain decides to discover Europe, more specifically Germany, the Alps and Italy, but he doesn’t do it in the old-fashioned way marveling at the wonders of the Old World. In fact, he has a humorous approach ironizing both the Europeans and the Americans alike.
Parson Yorick is an English traveler who doesn’t know much about plots and how to write proper novels. He knows many things however about human character. So he decides to write his impressions and adventures during his travels in France and Italy. No plot, just his encounters with many different men and women.
rA Texas Matchmaker by Andy Adams is the tale of Texas cowboys, based on Andy Adams’s own experience. It is an interesting log of how the west once used to be.
A young woman's first teaching assignment holds plenty of surprises in A Voice in the Wilderness by Grace Livingston Hill. Margaret Earl's train journey to Arizona leaves her stranded in the desert but with the help of a handsome young cowboy, she discovers the meaning of true friendship that deepens into something much more
An action-packed, contemporary novel about surviving in the wilderness. Thirteen-year-old Karma is desperate to become a certified falconer. At her dad's bird education center, she helps give demonstrations to guests and can fly the birds. But when her favorite rescued falcon, Stark, hurts Karma, her parents insist that they return the bird to its previous owner -- in Canada. On the way to bring Stark back, a car accident in the middle of nowhere leaves Karma's dad trapped, and it's up to Karma to find a way to rescue him and her younger brother. When Karma loses her way trying to get help, she crosses paths with Cooper, a troubled teenaged boy. Lost for three days, the two figure out how to survive, and Karma teaches Stark to hunt like an actual bird of prey. Karma may be closer than she thinks to becoming a real falconer and having a real friend.
Karen yearns to move back to her old apartment building- until she discovers that people are much more important than places.