Friday, March 31, 2017

What they're (really) reading: March 2017

By keeping a pulse on what our students are checking out at our middle school library and keeping a close eye on which books are circulating heavily, I feel that I can spend the small budget I have more wisely by choosing books I know will have a greater likelihood of circulating widely.

Each month I'll feature some books that are on the "heavy rotation" list in our middle school library. They're not necessarily new, shiny, or covered with awards -- they're just what the kids want.

This Month's Selections:

School For Sidekicks
by Kelly McCullough
Fantasy/Adventure Fiction

Superhero geek Evan survives a supervillian's death ray, and is sent to the Academy for Metahuman Operatives. Unfortunately, instead of fighting bad guys, Evan finds himself blacklisted, and on the wrong side of the school's director. Can he convince his semi-retired has-been mentor to become a real hero once again?

Sir Cumference and the Dragon of Pi : a math adventure
by Cindy Neuschwander

Radius, son of Sir Cumference, embarks on a quest to find the magic number known as pi in order to restore his father--who has been turned into a dragon--to his original shape. Glad to see this title get some love from Pi Day :)

Baba Yaga's Assistant
by Marika McCoola
Graphic Novel

Most children think twice before braving a haunted wood filled with terrifying beasties to match wits with a witch, but not Masha. Her beloved grandma taught her many useful things: that stories are useful, that magic is fickle, and that nothing is too difficult or too dirty to clean. The fearsome witch of folklore needs an assistant, and Masha needs an adventure. This book was featured in February's book tasting activity I did with students. I think it was a success!

Across the Universe
by Beth Revis
Dystopian Fiction

Amy, having been cryogenically frozen and placed onboard a spaceship which was supposed to land on a distant planet three hundred years in the future, is unplugged fifty years too early and finds herself stuck inside an enclosed world ruled by a tyrannical leader and his rebellious teenage heir and confused about who to trust and why someone is trying to kill her. Revis was a featured author at the SE-YA Book Fest we attended this month, so I was glad to see that this book got a circulation bump. 

Mark of the Thief
by Jennifer Nielsen
Historical/Adventure Fiction

When Nic, a slave in the mines outside of Rome, is forced to enter a sealed cavern containing lost treasures of Julius Caesar, he finds himself in possession of an ancient amulet filled with magic once reserved for the Gods, and becomes the center of a conspiracy to overthrow the emperor and destroy Rome. 

More Happy Than Not
by Adam Silvera
Speculative Fiction

After enduring his father's suicide, his own suicide attempt, broken friendships, and more in the Bronx projects, Aaron Soto, sixteen, is already considering the Leteo Institute's memory-alteration procedure when his new friendship with Thomas turns to unrequited love. This one also got a bump in interest from the SE-YA Book Festival we attended this month.

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