Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Planet Earth and Universe Favorites

Kids of all ages love books about world records, planets and stars, and amazing animal facts. Books like these are often put in a category called non-fiction, a strange name, which sounds boring, vaguely negative, and generally meaningless. This is odd, because the following books are actually dynamic, interactive, and addictive to read; and we have many more that have similarly exciting formats. See what you think...

Ultimate Interactive Atlas of Space by Robin Scagell

The title says it all. This cleverly designed and excitingly visual tour of our solar system will provide hours of learning and fun for your young astronomer. It is filled with remarkable illustrations and NASA photos that will take your breath away with their beauty. Each topic has interactive features - pop-ups, pull-outs, sliders, and flaps - to capture and hold your child's attention. This title will be under the Christmas tree for my seven year old grandson. I know he and his dad are going to love it! Ages 7 and up. - Joanne Kennedy

The Ultimate Interactive Atlas of the World by Elaine Jackson

This atlas will take your child on an exciting tour of the world, continent by continent. Each section is filled with facts, illustrations and photos to teach and entertain. The interactive features - flaps, pull-outs, and sliders - give your child a hands-on adventure in learning. We live in a small world which is becoming more interconnected every day; this atlas will give your child an understanding of and appreciation for this wonderful planet in all its diversity. For ages 7 and up. - Joanne Kennedy

Zany Miscellany: A Mixed-Up Encyclopedia of Fun Facts! by Tom Jackson

This crazy book has snippets of information about anything under the sun. You might find whales, minarets, cable cars and latitude all explained on the same page, and who knows what on the next page. It isn't linear learning, but it is fun especially because of all of the extras like Flop Ten lists of mistakes, question marks that lead you to answers, seesaw boxes telling how things have changed, wanted posters of notorious people through the ages, goof-a-thons describing accidental inventions, strange factoids, and wormholes that lead to related information if you want to know more. It's a nutty kind of encyclopedia, but likely to get read more thoroughly than the dusty volumes on your shelf. Great for curious minds ages 8-12.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Favorite Books continued...

The Youngest Templar Book One: Keeper of the Grail by Michael Spradlin
Young Tristan, an orphan brought up in an abbey, is swept off to war when he joins a group of Crusaders passing through on their way to distant lands. He becomes the trusted squire of Sir Thomas, who asks him to escape from the Holy Land with a sacred object and carry it to safety. Tristan now has Saracens, corrupt knights, and secret agents of the King on his trail, because the object he has to protect is none other than the Holy Grail. This is the first in an exciting new series for ages 10 and up.

Let It Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson and Lauren Myracle

These three holiday romances, written by award-winning young adult authors, all take place during one Christmas Eve snowstorm that stalls trains and closes roads. As the snow piles up, a chain of events begins to unfold that changes the lives of several teens in unexpected ways. Part of the fun is discovering how the stories crisscross each other and how random events in one story have unintended consequences in another story. A perfect story to read over holiday break while sipping a big mug of hot chocolate.

Alcatraz versus The Scrivener's Bones by Brandon Sanderson

On a mission to meet up with his grandfather, Alcatraz Smedry becomes the unlikely and reluctant leader of an even more unlikely crew. Alcatraz, along with Kazan, Bastille, and Australia, faces the most frightening enemy yet in the constant struggle against the Evil Librarians who control the Hushlands. In an adventure that leads to the dangerous Library of Alexandria (where the cost of checking out a book is your soul!), Alcatraz must use his rare Talent, along with luck and wit, to save the lives of those for whom he cares. If he fails, they all could perish and the Librarians would rule the Free Kingdoms. Set aside all you've learned in school and all you think you know about the way the world works and step into the real world of Alcatraz Smedry! - Kathleen Lehman

The Gate of Days by Guillaume Prevost The Book of Time II

Sam has a problem. Well, actually, Sam has many problems, but the one that worries him the most is that his dad, Allan Faulkner, is being held captive by Vlad Tepes, the historical torturer and inspiration for the dark character Dracula. Not that Sam or his father belongs in the 1400's, that just happens to be the time to which Allan travels and in which he was captured. Sam must now use an ancient stone statue to follow his father's path through time in an effort to save his dad form certain death. Not only will facing Vlad Tepes be tricky, and dangerous, but without being able to control the destination of his travels through time, Sam's chances of reaching his dad may be just near impossible. With the help of his cousin, a few coins, and a whole lot of luck, Sam just might find his dad in time. - Kathleen Lehman

What I Saw and How I Lied by Judy Blundell

Evie and her mother have always stuck together "like glue" and when Joe returned from the war and married her mother, Evie got the father she always wanted. With another summer coming to an end, Evie's stepfather suddenly decides to take the family for a trip to Florida. What begins as a carefree vacation quickly turns to something else. With a a new business deal and an intriguing romance mixed with lies and deception, the mess begins even before the storm hits. In the heat of Palm Beach Evie learns the skills of a woman and must make an important decision about loyalty and betrayal. The family will never be the same, but it is Evie who will be the most dramatically changed. - Kathleen Lehman

Come Back, Cat by Joan L. Nodset illustrated by Steven Kellogg

Making friends with a cat isn't easy for the young girl in this simple story. Gradually she learns how to be gentle, how to hold a cat, and how to sit quietly letting the cat come to her. Soon the cat settles in her lap, and she is rewarded for her patience with the sound of purring. Kellogg's lovely autumn colors and swirling leaves complement the story beautifully. This would be a perfect introduction for a family getting a new pet or a toddler learning to be gentle with the family pet. Ages 3-6.

Old Bear by Kevin Henkes

Old Bear falls asleep as the first snowflakes begin to drift in the air. He dreams about being a cub wandering through spring flowers, summer butterflies, autumn leaves and winter stars. When he wakes up expecting snow, he finds a world filled with flowers and wonders if he is still dreaming. The illustrations are inviting and comforting, and the simple story flows in a reassuring cadence, adding up to a perfect bedtime book for sleepy, little ones ages birth to 4.

Big Words for Little People by Jamie Lee Curtis illustrated by Laura Cornell

A new, winning collaboration by this #1 national best-selling team. Lots of words like Stupendous, Consequence, Co-operate, Patience, and Celebrate are explained in Curtis' rollicking rhymes with underlying themes of self-esteem and respect. Cornell gives each word a familiar with a lovable cast of characters in silly scenes and lots of details to laugh about. Definitely meant to be read aloud to ages 3-6.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Our Favorite New Books for All Ages

Louise the Adventures of a Chicken by Kate DiCamillo and Harry Bliss

Talk about adventures! Louise leaves the farm to find excitement and soon meets up with pirates, gets shipwrecked, joins the circus, is chased by a lion, gets kidnapped and imprisoned in a foreign bazaar and survives to tell the tale back on the farm. The illustrations make the most of each adventure adding humor and thrills to Louise's daring escapades. For ages 3-6.

I Completely Know About Guinea Pigs by Lauren Child

A new Charlie and Lola book is always a hit. In this new adventure Lola gets to bring Bert, the class pet, home after learning all about guinea pigs from her classmates and her teacher. Unfortunately, Bert gets lost, and Charlie and Lola search frantically all over the house for him, finally hearing a tell-tale squeak that leads them to a surprise, which Lola says she knew all along. Lots of fun for kids who love animals - ages 4-7.

If You Give a Cat a Cupcake by Laura Numeroff illustrated by Felicia Bond

Watch out if you give this cat a cupcake because you will have a very full day with trips to the beach, the gym, the science museum, the park and more, and in the end you can bet that he's going to want another cupcake. Marvelous illustrations turn this merry-go-round of a book into an all-out celebration of ways to have fun. Easy to read for ages 5-7. Read aloud to ages 3 and up.

Be Glad Your Nose is on Your Face and other poems by Jack Prelutsky

This is a treasury showcasing 112 of Jack Prelutsky's greatest hits selected from the thousands of poems that he has written. It includes 15 new poems and pages of funny activities like playing Frog I Spy, creating Scranimals, and singing the poems to surprising, familiar melodies. This hefty volume also includes a CD with 30 performances by the author! A real treat for ages 4-11.

Fairy Blossoms #1 Daisy and the Magic Lesson by Suzanne Williams

At Clov
erleaf Cottage Daisy and seven other flower fairies start their training as junior fairy helpers. Within 48 hours they have accidentally caused mischief and mayhem, despite their good intentions. Working together to solve the problems they have caused helps them form new friendships and learn a few lessons along the way. Four books have been released in this charming series which is sure to delight fairy lovers ages 4-8.

Amelia Bedelia Talks Turkey by Herman Parish illustrated by Lynn Sweat

All of the third grade teachers are out sick and the third-graders' Thanksgiving pageant will have to be cancelled until Amelia Bedelia offers to help out. Misunderstandings and puns abound, but in the end Amelia Bedelia and the students put on a play to remember beginning with the Pilgrims landing at the right address - 1620 Plymouth Rock. A holiday treat for beginning readers ages 4-8.

Are You Ready to Play Outside? by Mo Willems

The newest Elephant and Piggie book for the beginning reader is another funny story about easy-going Gerald and excitable Piggie. Full of ideas for playing outside, Piggie gets grumpy when it starts raining and spoils his plans. Gerald notices some worms having a grand time in the rain and thinks maybe some splishing and splashing would be fun. By the time Piggie gets over his funk and decides that he loves rain, the sun comes out and ruins his fun all over again. Joyful and silly, the books about these two friends are winners for ages 4-7.

The Runaway Dolls by Ann M. Martin and Laura Godwin illustrated by Brian Selznick

Annabelle and Tiffany find a mysterious package that might hold Annabelle's long-lost baby sister. It takes a runaway adventure with the dolls ending up in McGinitie's department store, where they almost get split up and sold, before they sort things out and find their way home. They make new friends, discover hundreds of identical Funcraft dolls, and even have a scary meeting with Mean Mimi. Lush illustrations fill the pages, giving the reader a doll's eye view of the world. A great story for readers ages 8-12 and a perfect read-aloud for ages 5 and up.

The Porcupine Year by Louise Erdrich

In this sequel to The Birchbark House and The Game of Silence, Omakayas and her Ojibwe family have to leave their beloved home on Madeline Island and search for a new place to live far away from the European settlers of 1852. On their journey, Pinch, the mischievous brother, befriends a little porcupine and carries him around on his head, earning himself a new nickname - Quill. Traveling into unknown territory can be exciting, but it is also risky, and one day the family is attacked by heartless men, who injure Deydey and steal the canoes packed with all of the family's belongings. Life takes a desparate turn for Omakayas and her family, who still have a long way to go and have lost everything.

The 39 Clues #1 The Maze of Bones by Rick Riordan

Riordan is the author of the bestselling Percy Jackson and the Olympians series, and he has fun setting up the plotline for this new ten books series about a dangerous treasure hunt for a vast inheritance. First, the wealthy and mysterious matriarch of the Cahill clan leaves a will offering certain relatives a choice between receiving a million dollars or finding the first clue to the source of the family's historical power. Dan and Amy choose to search for the clue and are plunged almost immediately into dangerous situations from explosions to poisons, thanks to their scheming cousins. Great fun for ages 8-12.

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

This may be my top pick for teens this fall. I could not put it down, and I have been thinking about it ever since it ended. Like a horrifying Olympics, the Hunger Games are a competition with opening ceremonies, a festival atmosphere, and 24 teen-aged contestants, who must fight to the death, on live TV, while imprisoned in a wilderness filled with death traps. Over several weeks they struggle to survive hunger and thirst, while they are hunted by their fellow competitors. The last one alive will win, and only the dead can leave the game. Sixteen year old Katniss Everdeen has the skills to survive her harsh life in District 12, but in the Hunger Games she needs to also become popular with the TV audience, while trying to outlast her competitors and fight off their attacks. The first in a thought-provoking and suspenseful new YA series.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

New Favorite Books

Schooled by Gordon Korman $5.99 Ages 10-14

Cap Anderson, good-natured, thoughtful, fun-loving, and kind, was raised and home-schooled in a hippie commune by his grandmother. He knows a lot about farm life, wildlife, academics, and survival skills, but he is clueless about life out in the real world. When his grandmother is hospitalized, Cap leaves his farm to stay with a social worker and attend middle school.

Talk about not fitting in, Cap is immediately the butt of jokes, and in a traditional school prank is elected class president. Not understanding that he is supposed to be humiliated and embarrassed to death, Cap sets about finding out what a class president does. His classmates gladly lead him astray, and give him impossible tasks. To their surprise he works to fulfill the tasks with determination, humor, and a growing posse of supporters.

Like Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli, Korman has created a character that we cheer for, that we wish was our friend, and who changes his school forever. Don’t miss this gem and pass it on to any middle school students, parents or teachers that you know.

Hate That Cat by Sharon Creech $15.99 Ages 8-12

I couldn’t wait to read this book, but when I held it on my lap, I hesitated, not sure I wanted to open it. The thing is, I am crazy about Love That Dog by Sharon Creech, and I was afraid that she couldn’t possibly do it again and I would be uncomfortable and disappointed as I read the sequel. Basically, I was worried that hating a cat might not be as good as loving a dog.

Finally, I made myself open to the first page, where I found that Jack was back and Miss Stretchberry was his teacher again. Before I even finished the first two journal entries, I was hooked right back into the funny and touching interplay between this remarkable teacher and her questioning student.

Honestly, this book is a wonder. Despite Jack and his professor uncle’s doubts, Miss Stretchberry introduces her students to a wide variety of poets and poetic styles. Some Jack loves and others he struggles with, but usually comes to appreciate. Walter Dean Myers makes another cameo appearance, and there are some tender revelations about Jack’s mother that crop up in his poems. His ongoing battle with a neighborhood cat is the subject of quite a few poems and journal entries, where Jack tries to express his frustrations and tribulations.

In the end, there really was no reason for me to worry; it turns out that this cat is a perfect companion to that dog.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


That's right, boxes filled with Paolini's new blockbuster are being unpacked and processed in our back room as we speak. I have to admit that the covers are striking in black and gold. How many pages? 748 plus several pages of pronunciation and language guides along with some very conversational acknowledgments at the end that you won't want to miss. ON SALE DATE: SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 20 NO EARLY SALES - SO DON'T ASK! Will we be open at midnight? Sorry, not this time. However, I am going to get up at the crack of dawn on Saturday (my day off!) to make good coffee and pick up fresh doughnuts, which you can eat for FREE during our open-house-style Brisingr Breakfast from 8:00 to 10:00 AM. Okay, I lied. My sweet husband, Mark, will be making the coffee, since I don't have a clue how to make good, bad or ugly coffee. So, this will be your lucky day, because I have heard that his coffee is fabulously delicious. Will there be discounts? Yes. Here's the scoop: we'll be selling Brisingr at 15% off, and we will be giving each and everyone of you who purchases a copy a chance to answer a Trivia Question about Eragon or Eldest. If you know the answer, you will win a coupon for a FREE book from our Special Edition Shelf filled with titles you'll recognize like Ranger's Apprentice, Alex Rider, and Artemis Fowl. We will continue the Trivia Contest until the end of September. See you Saturday.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Teacher Appreciation Days

As teachers begin preparing their classrooms for new students and a new school year, Dragonwings Bookstore will be hosting Teacher Appreciation Days on Wednesday and Thursday August 20-21.

Throughout the event teachers can browse displays featuring various authors along with free curriculum materials, reproducibles, and posters relating to their books. The materials will range from Kindergarten through Middle School for authors including Rosemary Wells, Shel Silverstein, Richard Peck, Jack Prelutsky, Lauren Myracle, James Patterson, Gail Carson Levine, Keiko Kasza, and Erin Hunter, along with activities for favorite characters and series such as Mike Mulligan, Arthur, the Chronicles of Narnia, Septimus Heap, Alex Rider, and Amelia Bedelia.

Dragonwings owner, Ellen Davis, will be available to answer questions and offer book recommendations for different curriculum areas. Davis will also have information about new fall titles and new releases in paperback for all grade levels.

Teachers and librarians from all school districts are welcome and will receive storewide discounts during Teacher Appreciation Days. Door prizes include a Bunnicula Meets Edgar Allan Crow T-shirt, an inflatable Walter the Farting Dog, a Captain Underpants tote bag, and many more equally "fabulous" prizes. Frequent Buyers Cards will be available, which teachers can use to earn both discounts and free books.

Purchase orders will be accepted from area school districts including Waupaca, Wild Rose, Weyauwega-Fremont, Iola-Scandinavia, and Stevens Point. Purchase Orders receive 20% off, and classroom sets of 50 or more books receive 22% off (ten copy minimum).

Dragonwings Bookstore also offers reading award coupons, which teachers and librarians from area schools use as incentives for programs such as Read-Up. In these programs students earn points by reading books, and receive prizes when they reach certain point levels. The award coupons are for a free book from Dragonwings. Teachers and librarians may request these coupons anytime during the year.

Art Activities at Dragonwings

Dragonwings Bookstore will be offering free art activities for kids all day Saturday August 16 during the Arts on the Square event. Families are invited to stop in and try some quick projects, which are self-directed and not too messy. Work tables will be set up with supplies and directions for Hand Art, Crayon Rubbings, and Thumbprint Art. All of the projects are from activity books by Klutz Press for ages 4 and up. The finished products do not require any drying time, and can be taken home immediately.

Entertainment stages and workshop tents will be set up around the library lawn and side streets, along with a large Farmers Market and dozens of artist's booths. The event starts Friday evening with a street dance and will be open from 10-5 on Saturday Aug. 16.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

I Spy Games

You are invited to play this week's I Spy Cats and Dogs game, which will be set up throughout Dragonwings Bookstore beginning on Saturday, June 28. The I Spy games are free, open-house-style events, which can be played anytime during Dragonwings open hours. Summer: 10 AM to 5 PM Monday through Friday and 10 AM to 4 PM Saturday.

To begin the game players pick up game cards, which list the dioramas, displays, and other settings in the store where cats and dogs are hidden and waiting to be discovered by clever I Spy contestants. At each location a riddle is posted, which lists each item that the players are trying to spy in the scene. Each riddle also inc
ludes one letter for a secret word. Once the riddles are completed and the secret word is discovered, players turn in the game cards and receive a small prize.

For I Spy Cats and Dogs the Dragonwings staff will use life-sized puppets, photos, and toys of all sizes in dioramas and displays. This is the third in a series of I Spy summer games, which are becoming more elaborate and more popular each week. Nearly 50 people played the I Spy Strawberry Hunt game on Saturday during Strawberry Fest.

Brenden Dowling (left) and his cousins Erin and Collin Dowling were visiting their grandmother in Waupaca last weekend for Strawberry Fest. Dragonwings is one of their favorite stops when they come to to
wn, and they were enthusiastic about playing the I Spy game. Here they are searching for a strawberry and other objects in our clear-topped I Spy Table.

Monday, May 19, 2008

I Spy Treasure Hunt at Dragonwings

I Spy Treasure Hunt
Saturday May 24
Free Event - Open all day

On Saturday May 24 Dragonwings Bookstore will host an I Spy Treasure Hunt. Look for I Spy games throughout the store, some of the games will be easy to find, like the big I Spy posters, others will be more hidden. Part of the fun will be finding each game.

The I Spy games are inspired by the series of books by Jean Marzollo and Walter Wick, who create detailed dioramas and clever poems that list items to search and find. The I Spy books are family favorites, and have become so popular that there are now spin-off series such as Can You See What I See? by Walter Wick, I Spy easy readers, and rebus-style I Spy board books.

My personal favorite is Made You Look, the Klutz compendium of puzzlers. It has every kind of search-and-find game that I’ve ever seen including a haunted house of glowing ghosts, a circular scramble that you look at through a mirrored tube, a completely dark page that you illuminate with a punch-out flashlight, and many more that I’ve never seen before. It’s an incredible collection.

The I Spy dioramas at Dragonwings Bookstore will be life-sized and integrated into the store’s displays. Here's a hint: you might want to take a second look at our front window and at our woodland fairy garden.

The I Spy Treasure Hunt is a free event and will be available to play all day.
Prizes of discount coupons will be awarded for completing the games and finding “gold” coins hidden in the store. We will be giving out prizes only on Saturday, but we will leave many of the games set up for the next couple of weeks. So, if your grandchildren or cousins will be visiting, you can bring them in to play.

Monday, April 28, 2008

April Event Photos

Guests at Dragonwings Corduroy Bear Event were very busy decorating activity books, making medallions, and playing games.

Some very fancy guests came to Dragonwings Fancy Nancy Tea Party in April.

May Events

Mother's Day Gift-Making Workshops
Registration: 715-256-9186 or dragonwingsbookstore@gmail.com
Friday May 2 Rainbow Art 1:00 pm Ages 6-10 Fee $7.50 This Friday is an early dismissal day for Waupaca schools, and a perfect time for an art workshop. We will be creating several projects including a Mother's Day card, using rainbow art paper, stencils and stickers. Each student will receive a rainbow art kit with tools, paper pack, and a project book.

Saturday May 10 Beading Workshop
Ages 6-10 Fee $7.50 Here's your chance to make a beautiful bracelet for your Mother, and have plenty of beads left over for yourself and for more gifts. We will learn some basic bead design principles for your one of a kind jewelry. Each student will receive a bead kit in a hard plastic case with nine compartments for 150 beads in a variety of shapes and colors along with several strands of beading string.

Saturday May 24 Memorial Day Weekend
I Spy Treasure Hunt Open House
Games and prizes throughout the day - more info soon!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

More Favorite Books for Spring '08

I’m Bad by Kate and Jim McMullan

$16.99 HarperCollins Ages 2-5

This T-Rex is really bad, really big and really hungry, but although he’s huge, fast and sneaky, he just can’t catch anything for dinner. He finally throws a spectacular tantrum in an explosion of color, which brings some surprising help his way. Iridescent illustrations overflowing the pages in vivid orange, yellow, purple and lime green are filled with action and humor. By the creators of I Stink and I’m Dirty, I’m Bad will be a favorite read-aloud, begged for again and again.

The Pigeon Wants a Puppy! By Mo Willems

Hyperion $14.99

Once more ultimate happiness is almost within pigeon’s grasp, if only he could have a puppy, life would be perfect. Maybe, but then again, maybe not. This is one pigeon who is not afraid to express his inner child, especially when he wants something. He’ll try everything – flattery, logic, tantrums, but is a puppy really the answer to finding happiness or even satisfaction? For ages 3 and up.

Duck Soup by Jackie Urbanovic

HarperCollins $16.99

Duck is making soup, but it still needs a little something to spice it up. While he is out in the garden choosing herbs, his friends troop into the kitchen and immediately suspect that duck has fallen into the soup kettle. Dumping the soup into a colander, they are shocked to find what might be eyeballs and webbed feet (but luckily turn out to be onions and carrots). Poor duck, his soup is ruined, but at least he hasn't become...Duck Soup. For ages 2-6.

Savvy by Ingrid Law

Dial $16.99 Ages 9-12

The boisterous, warm-hearted, Beaumont family has a major secret. Each member of the family develops a surprise savvy on the day they turn thirteen. Will Mibs get a supernatural power like her brother Fish who can cause hurricanes, or Rocket who creates electricity or Grandpa who could move mountains? It’s Mibs’ turn to be struck by her savvy, but her birthday goes all wrong when Poppa is badly hurt in an accident. Will Mibbs’ new savvy help save her father’s life or will it be another source of problems for the family? Mibbs only knows that she needs to get to her Poppa in the hospital and find out, which is why she, her siblings and the preacher’s kids stow away on a bible salesman’s broken-down, old, school bus, and ride into a world of trouble.

My Dog May Be a Genius by Jack Prelutsky

Greenwillow $18.99

Over 100 funny poems by the first ever U.S. Children’s Poet Laureate. Some of my favorites are A Letter From Camp, which recounts a series of dreadful accidents and mishaps written by a very happy camper; also My Brother Poked a Porcupine about a family’s misbegotten nature walks, and He Thought He Saw a Crocodile in which a man mistakenly sees danger lurking everywhere until one day…uh-oh, he’s right. A great family gift this is a very funny read-aloud for ages 5-12.

Adventures of Riley - Safari in South Africa, Project Panda

By Amanda Lumry and Laura Hurwitz

Scholastic $16.99 Ages 4-8

Riley can’t believe how lucky he is to be invited to join Uncle Max, a world-famous conservation biologist, and his family on their wildlife expeditions around the world. A clever mix of stunning photography and cartoon art, draws readers into each scene as Riley and his cousins explore the habitats and animals in exotic regions. Colorful sidebars from real scientists have quick facts about each species, while the storylines will keep even young children interested. A unique approach to learning about endangered animals, poaching and conservation.

The Golly-whopper Games by Jody Feldman

Greenwillow $16.99 ages 8-12

Gil Goodson beats the odds and wins a chance to enter the Golly-Whopper Games. The prizes are fantastic, but the games are tough challenges, and Gil is part of a team of kids who find it difficult to work together. Also, despite high security and hidden cameras, someone on his team is cheating and it gets worse when they have to compete against each other. Readers can try to solve the clues to each game along with the players, who are racing against the clock while suspense builds. With a surprise twist at the end, and a very satisfying conclusion, The Golly-Whopper Games is a perfect book for fans of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Corduroy Bear 40th Anniversary Event

Dragonwings Bookstore is celebrating the 40th anniversary of the classic children’s book Corduroy by Don Freeman with a Corduroy Bear Event and a Button Guessing Contest on April 26.

Written during 1967 and published in 1968, Corduroy, and the sequel A Pocket for Corduroy, became so popular that they inspired over two dozen related board books, lift-the-flap books, and activity books. A newly released Anniversary Edition of the original Corduroy story adds eight pages of interactive bonus materials, which include envelopes filled with copies of early manuscripts, letters Don Freeman sent to his editor, and his very first sketches of Corduroy and Lisa, the girl who gives the little bear a new button and a home.

At the Corduroy Bear Event children will play button toss, I Spy and guessing games, make button crafts, and listen to stories while they sort buttons. The event, for ages 4-8, will take place at Dragonwings Bookstore on Saturday April 26 at 3:00. The cost is $5.00 and includes all supplies and a Corduroy book for each child. Reservations can be made by calling 715-256-9186 or signing up at the store at 108 N. Main St. Waupaca.

A fifteen inch plush Corduroy bear is the prize for the Button Guessing Contest. The prize bear and a button jar are on display at Dragonwings and everyone is invited to stop in on Saturday April 26 before 3:00 to guess how many buttons are in the jar. During the party the buttons will be sorted and counted, and the closest guess will win the big, plush bear.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Favorite New Books

Audrey, Wait! by Robin Benway

When Audrey breaks up with her musician boyfriend he writes a song about it and, by chance and the internet, the song becomes a hit making Audrey a reluctant, national celebrity. With paparazzi following her everywhere, Audrey’s private life is suddenly splashed across the internet and the fan magazines. How can she get her life back and maybe even fall in love again, when everyone who wants to be famous is trying to be her new best friend? With song lists for every chapter, this book would make a great gift for a teen who wants something fun and thoughtful to read.

My Most Excellent Year: A Novel of Love, Mary Poppins, and Fenway Park
by Steve Kluger

Kluger uses e-mails, notes, essays, journals, and instant messaging to hilarious effect showing how T.C., his family, and his friends try to figure out baseball, romance, homework, sign language, and a little boy’s addiction to Mary Poppins. You will be glad that you had a chance to spend a crazy year with this big-hearted group, who value friendship above everything else.

The Big Field by Mike Lupica

Another winning story about kids playing league baseball, this time with a view from shortstop and second base. After Hutch is voted team captain, their hot-shot player, Darryl, becomes angry and sarcastic causing Hutch to lose his cool and let his team down. His deep love of baseball helps Hutch make amends and pull his team back together in time for the championship game. Whether or not you love sports, it’s easy to get hooked by Lupica’s stories. For ages 10-14.

A Lot of Otters board book by Barbara Helen Berger

A child is floating in a box reading a bedtime story as friendly otters drift near. When tears from Mother Moon fall into the sea turning into stars, the otters frolic with the stars, catching Mother Moon’s attention. She swoops down to cradle her missing, sleepy child, who is “safe with a lot of otters in a sea of stars.” As in Berger’s Grandfather Twilight, the steady, soothing rhythm and gentle, lush illustrations create a sense of calm and peace, which is always welcome at bedtime.