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HOL
Turtle in Paradise (age 9-12)
by Jennifer Holm
adventure ... growing up ... historical
Publisher comments: Life isn't like the movies, and eleven-year-old Turtle is no Shirley Temple. She's smart and tough and has seen enough of the world not to expect a Hollywood ending. After all, it's 1935, and jobs and money and sometimes even dreams are scarce. So when Turtle's mama gets a job housekeeping for a lady who doesn't like kids, Turtle says goodbye without a tear and heads off to Key West, Florida, to stay with relatives she's never met. Florida's like nothing Turtle has ever seen. It's hot and strange, full of wild green peeping out between houses, ragtag boy cousins, and secret treasure. Before she knows what's happened, Turtle finds herself coming out of the shell she has spent her life building, and as she does, her world opens up in the most unexpected ways.
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CRE
Chasing Redbird (age 9-12)
by Sharon Creech
growing up ... identity ... family ... illness/loss
It started out as an ordinary summer. But the minute thirteen-year-old Zinny uncovered the old, overgrown trail that ran through the woods behind her family's house, she realized that things were about to change. Right from the start, Zinny knew that uncovering the trail would be more than just a summer project. It was her chance to finally make people notice her, and to have a place she could call her very own. But more than that, Zinny knew that the trail somehow held the key to all kinds of questions. And that the only way to understand her family, her Aunt Jessie's death, and herself, was to find out where it went.
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BUN
Sixth-Grade Sleepover (age 9-12)
by Eve Bunting
growing up ... school
Catalog: Janey worries that the sixth grade Rabbit Reading Club's all-night sleepover will expose her fear of the dark, but it turns out that she is not the only member with a secret.
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BLO
A Gathering of Days: a New England Girl's Journal, 1830-32, a Novel (age 9-12)
by Joan W. Blos
historical ... growing up ... letters/journal
Catalog: The journal of a fourteen-year-old girl, kept the last year she lived on the family farm, records daily events in her small New Hampshire town, her father's remarriage, and the death of her best friend.
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HOR
My One Hundred Adventures (age 9-12)
by Polly Horvath
family ... growing up ... adventure
Publisher comments: Jane is 12 years old, and she is ready for adventures, to move beyond the world of her siblings and single mother and their house by the sea, and step into the "know-not what." And, over the summer, adventures do seem to find Jane, whether it's a thrilling ride in a hot-air balloon, the appearances of a slew of possible fathers, or a weird new friendship with a preacher and psychic wannabe. Most important, there's Jane's discovery of what lies at the heart of all great adventures: that it's not what happens to you that matters, but what you learn about yourself.
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COW
Dar and the Spear-Thrower (age 9-12)
by Marjorie Cowley
growing up ... historical
Catalog: A young boy living 15,000 years ago in southeastern France is initiated into manhood by his clan and sets off on a journey to trade his valuable fire rocks for an ivory spear thrower.
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SPI
The Library Card (age 9-12)
by Jerry Spinelli
growing up ... short stories ... authorship
Mongoose, Brenda, Sonseray, and April have nothing in common...until a mysterious blue card appears as if by magic and begins to change each of their lives. None of them guesses it at first, but that strange blue card will be their ticket to the past--and to a future that they never imagined. In stories that range from humorous to heartbreaking, Newbery-award-winner Jerry Spinelli reveals the amazing possibilities lurking behind library doors.
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TWA
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (age 9-12)
by Mark Twain
adventure ... growing up ... humor
The adventures of a mischievous young boy and his friends growing up in a Mississippi River town in the nineteenth century.
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RYA
Paint the Wind (age 9-12)
by Pam Munoz Ryan
family ... animals ... illness/loss ... growing up
Maya is a captive. In Grandmother's house in California, every word and action is strictly monitored, and even Maya's memories of her mother have been erased, except within the imaginary world she has created. A world away, in the rugged Wyoming wilderness, a tobiano Paint horse called Artemisia runs free, belonging only to the stars. She embodies the spirit of the wild, and she holds the key to Maya's memories. How Maya's and Artemisia's lives intertwine, like a braided rein, is at the heart of this richly drawn adventure about captivity and freedom, about holding on and letting go.
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POT
Olivia Kidney Series (age 9-12)
by Ellen Potter
growing up ... fantasy ... humor
Olivia Kidney's new apartment building is crazy! Talking lizards crawling everywhere. A tropical rainforest growing in 7B. Even an apartment made entirely of glass! Maybe her father will get fired from his job as the building super, and they can leave. But Olivia is tired of moving from place to place, from school to school. What she wouldn't give for a little slice of sanity. And maybe a friend to share it with. This remarkable debut novel is quirky, magical, and completely genuine. Ellen Potter offers us a world where even the oddest of characters feel right at home. Olivia Kidney has all the makings of a classic.
title: Olivia Kidney
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KIN
Diary of a Wimpy Kid Series (age 9-12)
by Jeff Kinney
letters/journal ... growing up ... humor ... school ... friendship
It's a new school year, and Greg Heffley finds himself thrust into middle school, where undersized weaklings share the hallways with kids who are taller, meaner, and already shaving. The hazards of growing up before you're ready are uniquely revealed through words and drawings as Greg records them in his diary.
title: Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Greg Heffley's Journal
title: Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules
title: Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Last Straw
title: Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days
title: Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Ugly Truth
title: Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Cabin Fever
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TAM
The Junkyard Dog (age 9-12)
by Erika Tamar
growing up ... family ... animals
With the advice of her stepfather, eleven-year-old Katie takes on the job of feeding an abused junkyard dog and building it a doghouse for shelter during the hard winter.
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NAY
Night Cry (age 9-12)
by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
growing up ... family ... mystery
Often left alone on their five-acre Mississippi farm by her traveling-salesman father, Ellen learns, through a terrifying experience, to distinguish between real and false fears.
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HUN
Up a Road Slowly (age 9-12)
by Irene Hunt
family ... growing up
After her mother's death, Julie goes to live with Aunt Cordelia, a spinster schoolteacher, where she experiences many emotions and changes as she grows from seven to eighteen.
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PAT
The Hard Pan Trilogy (age 9-12)
by Susan Patron
humor ... growing up ... survival ... illness/loss ... friendship ... family
Publisher comments: Lucky, age ten, can't wait another day. The meanness gland in her heart and the crevices full of questions in her brain make running away from Hard Pan, California (population 43), the rock-bottom only choice she has. It's all Brigitte's fault ... for wanting to go back to France. Guardians are supposed to stay put and look after girls in their care! Instead Lucky is sure that she'll be abandoned to some orphanage in Los Angeles. She'll have to lose her friends Miles and Lincoln. Just as bad, she'll have to give up eavesdropping on twelve-step anonymous programs where the interesting talk is all about Higher Powers. Lucky needs her own ... and quick. But she hadn't planned on a dust storm. Or needing to lug the world's heaviest survival-kit backpack into the desert.
title: The Higher Power of Lucky
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LOR
Rules (age 9-12)
by Cynthia Lord
growing up ... friendship ... family
Twelve-year-old Catherine just wants a normal life. Which is near impossible when you have a brother with autism and a family that revolves around his disability. She's spent years trying to teach David the rules-from "a peach is not a funny-looking apple" to "keep your pants on in public"-in order to stop his embarrassing behaviors. But the summer Catherine meets Jason, a paraplegic boy, and Kristi, the next-door friend she's always wished for, it's her own shocking behavior that turns everything upside down and forces her to ask: What is normal?
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CUS
The Midwife's Apprentice (age 9-12)
by Karen Cushman
growing up ... historical
In medieval England, a nameless, homeless girl is taken in by a sharp-tempered midwife and, in spite of obstacles and hardship, eventually gains the three things she most wants: a full belly, a contented heart, and a place in this world.
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HUN
Across Five Aprils (age 9-12)
by Irene Hunt
war ... family ... growing up ... historical
Young Jethro Creighton grows from a boy to a man when he is left to take care of the family farm in Illinois during the difficult years of the Civil War.
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CRE
Replay: a New Book (age 9-12)
by Sharon Creech
family ... growing up ... the arts
Leo's papa stood in the doorway, gazing down at him. "Leo, you make gold from pebbles," and the way he said it, Leo could tell that this was a good thing. He may have been given a bit part in the school play ... but Leo dreams he is the biggest star on Broadway. Sure, his big, noisy family makes him feel like a sardine squashed in a tin ... but in his fantasy he gets all the attention he wants. Yes, his papa seems sad and distracted ... but Leo imagines him as a boy, tap-dancing and singing with delight. That's why they call Leo "fog boy." He's always dreaming, always replaying things in his brain. He fantasizes about who he is in order to discover who he will become. As an actor in the school play, he is poised and ready for the curtain to open. But in the play that is his life, Leo is eager to discover what part will be his.
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CRE
Granny Torrelli Makes Soup (age 9-12)
by Sharon Creech
growing up ... family ... friendship
Bailey, who is usually so nice, Bailey, my neighbor, my friend, my buddy, my pal for my whole life, knowing me better than anybody, that Bailey, that Bailey I am so mad at right now, that Bailey, I hate him today. Twelve-year-old Rosie and her best friend, Bailey, don't always get along, that's true. But Granny Torrelli seems to know just how to make things right again with her warm words and family recipes. She understands from experience that life's twists and turns can't rattle the unique bond between two lifelong pals.
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BAU
On My Honor (age 9-12)
by Marion Dane Bauer
illness/loss ... growing up ... friendship
On your honor?" Joel's father said. "You won't go anywhere except the park?" "On my honor," Joel repeated. During a bicycle trip to the state park, Joel dares his best fried Tony to a swimming race in the dangerous Vermillion River. The boys have been warned never to go near the river, but Tony can't let Joel think he's scared. Both boys jump in. When Joel reaches the sandbar, he turns and looks for Tony and finds that he has vanished. Joel is stunned. How can he face their parents and the terrible truth?
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HAN
Ida B: and Her Plans to Maximize Fun, Avoid Disaster, and (Possibly) Save the World (age 9-12)
by Katherine Hannigan
illness/loss ... humor ... school ... growing up
Who is Ida B. Applewood? She is a fourth grader like no other, living a life like no other, with a voice like no other, and her story will resonate long after you have put this book down. How does Ida B cope when outside forces (life, really) attempt to derail her and her family and her future? She enters her Black Period, and it is not pretty. But then, with the help of a patient teacher, a loyal cat and dog, her beloved apple trees, and parents who believe in the same things she does (even if they sometimes act as though they don't), the resilience that is the very essence of Ida B triumph...and Ida B. Applewood takes the hand that is extended and starts to grow up.
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FIT
Harriet the Spy (age 9-12)
by Louise Fitzhugh
brilliant protagonist ... growing up ... realistic ... friendship
Harriet M. Welsch is a spy. In her notebook, she writes down everything she knows about everyone, even her classmates and her best friends. Then Harriet loses track of her notebook, and it ends up in the wrong hands. Before she can stop them, her friends have read the always truthful, sometimes awful things she's written about each of them. Will Harriet find a way to put her life and her friendships back together?
sequel: The Long Secret
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WOJ
Shadow of a Bull (age 9-12)
by Maia Wojciechowska
identity ... family ... growing up
Manolo Olivar has to make a decision: to follow in his famous father's shadow and become a bullfighter, or to follow his heart and become a doctor.
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LOW
Anastasia Series (age 9-12)
by Lois Lowry
growing up ... realistic ... humor ... family
To Anastasia Krupnik, being ten is very confusing. For one thing, she has this awful teacher who can't understand why Anastasia doesn't capitalize or punctuate her poems. Then, there's Washburn Cummings, a very interesting sixth-grade boy who doesn't even know she is alive. Even her parents have become difficult. On top of that, they're going to have a baby, at their age! It's enough to make a kid want to do something terrible. Anastasia knows that if she didn't have her secret green notebook to write in, she would never make it to her eleventh birthday. Fans of Anastasia will enjoy this author's books about her little brother Sam as well.
title: Anastasia Krupnik
title: Anastasia Again!
title: Anastasia at Your Service
title: Anastasia on Her Own
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APP
Animorphs Megamorphs Series (age 9-12)
by K. A. Applegate
action ... growing up ... animals ... science fiction ... adventure
Fans of the original Animorphs series will love these heart-pounding adventures, told from each character's point of view.
title: The Andalite's Gift
title: In the Time of Dinosaurs
title: The Hork-Bajir Chronicles
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APP
Animorphs Series (age 9-12)
by K. A. Applegate
action ... growing up ... animals ... science fiction ... adventure
This fantastic, unpredictable, edge-of-your-seat series can best be described as an ``X-Files'' for kids--plus a whole lot more! Jake, Rachel, Cassie, Tobias, and Marco are the Animorphs--five kids who can change into any animal they touch.
title: The Invasion
title: The Visitor
title: The Encounter
title: The Message
title: The Capture
title: The Stranger
title: The Alien
title: The Secret
title: The Android
title: The Forgotten
title: The Reaction
title: The Change
title: The Warning
title: The Underground
title: The Decision
title: The Pretender
title: The Suspicion
title: The Exposed
title: The Experiment
title: The Sickness
title: The Reunion
title: The Conspiracy
title: The Separation
title: The Illusion
title: The Extreme
title: The Escape
title: The Discovery
title: The Solution
title: The Threat
title: The First Journey
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OPP
The Silverwing Trilogy (age 9-12)
by Kenneth Oppel
growing up ... action ... adventure
Shade is a young Silverwing bat, the runt of his colony. But he's determined to prove himself on the long, dangerous winter migration to Hibernaculum, millions of wingbeats to the south. During a fierce storm, he loses the others and soon faces the most incredible journey of his young life. Desperately searching for a way to rejoin his flock, Shade meets a remarkable cast of characters. But which ones are friends and which ones are enemies? In this epic story of adventure and suspense, Shade is going to need all the help he can find, if he hopes to ever see his family again.
title: Silverwing
title: Sunwing
title: Firewing
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NAY
The Alice Prequels (age 9-12)
by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
friendship ... school ... identity ... realistic ... growing up
Well, a pet and pierced ears and really long hair would be nice, too and most of all, Alice wishes she still had a mother. But starting third grade in a new school in a new town can be lonely, especially if the closest thing you have to a friend is weird Donald Sheavers from next door. But even making new friends can't solve all of Alice's problems. Somehow she manages to get into trouble for a stupid lie, and to get on the wrong side of a bullying crossing guard and three snooty girls whom Alice calls "the Terrible Triplets." Will Alice ever feel at home in Takoma Park? This series introduce the younger Alice, leading up to the older series The Agony of Alice.
title: Starting With Alice
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CUS
The Ballad of Lucy Whipple (age 9-12)
by Karen Cushman
growing up ... historical
In 1849, a twelve-year-old girl who calls herself Lucy is distraught when her mother moves the family from Massachusetts to a small California mining town, where Lucy helps run a rough boarding house and looks for comfort in books while trying to find a way to get ``home.''
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BUR
A Little Princess (age 9-12)
by Frances Hodgson Burnett
growing up ... friendship ... fantasy
A Little Princess tells the story of Ann, whose comfortable life as the daughter of a wealthy and loving father is destroyed when he goes missing. Though she faces many challenges, we find that her strength of character makes her special indeed.
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BLU
Are You There, God? It's Me, Margaret (age 9-12)
by Judy Blume
identity ... friendship ... growing up
For Margaret, everything is different this year. She's just moved from New York City to the suburbs and is anxious to fit in with her new friends. When the girls form a secret club to talk about private subjects, Margaret is happy to belong. But in Farbrook, everybody joins the Y or the Jewish Community Center. Margaret doesn't have a religion, so what's she supposed to do? Suddenly life is very confusing. Maybe it's all part of growing up, but Margaret could really use some answers.

Escondido Elementary School, Sat Aug 25 11:55:29 2012
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