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WEL
My Havana: Memories of a Cuban Boyhood (age 9-12)
by Rosemary Wells
identity ... growing up ... historical
Publisher comments: "You're always drawing in that notebook of yours," Dino's friend teases. To the small boy, 1950s Havana is alive with color, music, and glamour, and he itches to capture it on paper. When Fidel Castro and the Communist Party take over the Cuban government, Dino's family must move to New York, where the lonely boy pours his heart into making a model of Havana’s archways and balconies, buildings and streets. Rosemary Wells composes a tender ode to an immigrant boy who grew up to be a U.S. architect, while Peter Ferguson's atmospheric paintings evoke two vibrant cities as they were half a century ago.
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LAF
Eight Keys (age 9-12)
by Suzanne LaFleur
growing up ... identity ... friendship
Publisher comments: Elise and Franklin have always been best friends. Elise has always lived in the big house with her loving Uncle and Aunt, because Elise's parents died when she was too young to remember them. There's always been a barn behind the house with eight locked doors on the second floor. When Elise and Franklin start middle school, things feel all wrong. Bullying. Not fitting in. Franklin suddenly seems babyish. Then, soon after her 12th birthday, Elise receives a mysterious key left for her by her father. A key that unlocks one of the eight doors upstairs in the bar.
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MEY
Black Radishes (age 9-12)
by Susan Lynn Meyer
historical ... war ... identity
Publisher comments: Gustave doesn't want to move from the exciting city to the boring countryside, far from his cousin Jean-Paul and his best friend, the mischievous Marcel. But he has no choice. It is March of 1940, and Paris is not a safe place for Jews. When Paris is captured by the Nazis, Gustave knows that Marcel, Jean-Paul, and their families must make it out of the occupied zone. And when he learns that his new friend Nicole works for the French Resistance, he comes up with a plan that just might work. But going into Occupied France is a risky thing to do when you are Jewish. And coming back alive? That is nearly impossible.
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WIL
One Crazy Summer (age 9-12)
by Rita Williams-Garcia
identity ... family ... historical
Publisher comments: Set during one of the most tumultuous years in recent American history, One Crazy Summer is the heartbreaking, funny tale of three girls who travel to Oakland, California, in 1968 in search of the mother who abandoned them.
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HAW
Violet Raines Almost got Struck by Lightning (age 9-12)
by Danette Haworth
identity ... friendship
Publisher comments: Spunky, headstrong Violet Raines is happy with things just the way they are in her sleepy backwoods Florida town. She loves going to the fish fry with her best friend, Lottie, and collecting BrainFreeze cups with her good friend Eddie. She loves squeezing into the open trunk of the old cypress tree, looking for alligators in the river, and witnessing lighting storms on a warm summer day. But Violet's world is turned upside down when Melissa moves to town from big city Detroit. All of a sudden Violet's supposed to want to wear makeup, and watch soap operas, and play Truth or Dare! It'll take the help of Violet's friends, her Momma, a few run-ins with lightning, and maybe even Melissa, for Violet to realize that growing up doesn't have to mean changing who you are.
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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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LOR
In the Year of the Boar and Jackie Robinson (age 9-12)
by Bette Bao Lord
friendship ... humor ... identity ... sports ... school
Shirley Temple Wong sails from China to America with a heart full of dreams. Her new home is Brooklyn, New York. America is indeed a land full of wonders, but Shirley doesn't know any English, so it's hard to make friends. Then a miracle happens...baseball. It is 1947, and Jackie Robinson, star of the Brooklyn Dodgers, is everyone's hero. Jackie Robinson is proving that a black man, the grandson of a slave, can make a difference in America and for Shirley as well, on the ball field and off, America becomes the land of opportunity.
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SLO
Hang Tough, Paul Mather (age 9-12)
by Alfred Slote
identity ... illness/loss ... sports
Paul Mather's a pitcher ... a really good one. His off speed pitch is enough to bowl a kid backward, and his fast ball is pure smoke. There isn't anything he can't throw, from sliders, change-ups, and sinkers to a mean curve ball that breaks at just the right moment. He's pitched no-hitters and perfect games. To Paul, pitching is what you live for and why you live. Lately, though, Paul hasn't been allowed to do much of anything, much less play ball. He's got leukemia, and it's put him into the hospital several times already. His parents are so worried, they've forbidden him to play the game he loves so much. They're afraid that if Paul strains himself his illness may come back a final time...and maybe even take his life. But Paul is a winner. His team needs him, and he won't give up without a fight. Paul Mather is determined to pitch every inning...to keep playing baseball, and to keep hanging tough, no matter what the odds.
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AUC
Pick of the Litter (age 9-12)
by Mary Jane Auch
humor ... identity ... family
An eleven-year-old adopted child realizes that being an only child has its advantages when her mother becomes pregnant after years of sterility.
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HAD
The Missing Series (age 9-12)
by Margaret Peterson Haddix
adventure ... identity ... science fiction
Publisher comments: Thirteen-year-old Jonah has always known that he was adopted, and he's never thought it was any big deal. Then he and a new friend, Chip, who's also adopted, begin receiving mysterious letters. The first one says, You are one of the missing. The second one says, Beware They're coming back to get you. Jonah, Chip, and Jonah's sister, Katherine, are plunged into a mystery that involves the FBI, a vast smuggling operation, an airplane that appeared out of nowhere, and people who seem to appear and disappear at will. The kids discover they are caught in a battle between two opposing forces that want very different things for Jonah and Chip's lives. Do Jonah and Chip have any choice in the matter? And what should they choose when both alternatives are horrifying?
title: Found
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GIF
Eleven (age 9-12)
by Patricia Reilly Giff
realistic ... growing up ... family ... mystery ... identity
Publisher comments: Sam is almost 11 when he discovers a locked box in the attic above his grandfather Mack’s room, and a piece of paper that says he was kidnapped. There are lots of other words, but Sam has always had trouble reading. He’s desperate to find out who he is, and if his beloved Mack is really his grandfather. At night he’s haunted by dreams of a big castle and a terrifying escape on a boat. Who can he trust to help him read the documents that could unravel the mystery? Then he and the new girl, Caroline, are paired up to work on a school project, building a castle in Mack’s woodworking shop. Caroline loves to read, and she can help. But she’s moving soon, and the two must hurry to discover the truth about Sam.
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WHI
Way Down Deep (age 9-12)
by Ruth White
mystery ... family ... identity
Although Ruby seemed to just appear out of thin air on the steps of the courthouse on the first day of summer in 1944, no one in Way Down Deep, West Virginia, ever worried too much about where the toddler came from. They figured that if Rubys people were dumb enough to lose something as valuable as a child, then that was their problem. So even though Ruby can't help but wonder where she came from, she has led a joyful and carefree life in Way Down Deep, loved and watched over by Miss Arbutus (proprietor of The Roost, the local boardinghouse) the residents of The Roost, and the rest of the town. But when Ruby is twelve, a new family moves to Way Down Deep, and they inadvertently provide enough clues about Ruby's past that she is able to find her own people. Ruby travels from Way Down Deep to the top of Yonder Mountain to learn who she really is, only to find that she is bound to Way Down Deep by something even stronger than family ties: love.
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CAR
Witch-cat (age 9-12)
by Joan Davenport Carris
fantasy ... identity ... magic
A down-to-earth girl is made to see that she is a witch through the efforts of a magical cat.
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BYA
The Glory Girl (age 9-12)
by Betsy Cromer Byars
identity ... family ... the arts
Anna Glory, the one non-singing member of a gospel-singing family, feels left out, like her misfit Uncle Newt, until the day the family bus is involved in a terrible accident.
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HAW
The Cat That Could Spell Mississippi (age 9-12)
by Laura Hawkins
identity ... friendship ... school
Anxious to prove that she is special at her new school, fourth-grader Linda makes everything more difficult for herself when she cheats on a spelling bee.
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MAT
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (age 9-12)
by Joanne Mattern
identity ... spooky
A retelling of the classic tale by Robert Louis Stevenson of a kind and well-respected doctor is transformed into a murderous madman by taking a secret drug of his own creation.
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STE
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (age 9-12)
by Robert Louis Stevenson
identity ... spooky
A kind and well-respected doctor is transformed into a murderous madman by taking a secret drug of his own creation.
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IBB
The Star of Kazan (age 9-12)
by Eva Ibbotson
mystery ... identity
Set in pre-World War I Vienna, a young servant girl Annika learns that she is actually an aristocrat whose true home is an ancient castle. There, Annika discovers that all is not as it seems in the lives of her newfound family.
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MCK
The Casson Family Series (age 9-12)
by Hilary McKay
humor ... identity ... family
Publisher comments: The four Casson children, whose mother, Eve, is a fine-arts painter, have all been given the names of paint colors. Cadmium (Caddy), is the eldest; then Saffron (Saffy); Indigo, the only boy; and Rose, the youngest. When Saffy discovers quite by accident that she has been adopted, she is deeply upset, though the others assure her that it makes no difference at all. Saffy is the daughter of Eve's twin sister, who lived in Siena, Italy, and died in a car crash. Grandad brought Saffy, as a very small child, back from Siena. At Grandad's death he leaves something to each of the children. To Saffy, it is "her angel," although no one knows its identity. How Saffy discovers what her angel is, with the help of an energetic new friend, lies at the heart of this enchanting story. Unforgettable characters come alive in often deeply humorous and always absorbing events to be treasured for a long, long time.
title: Saffy's Angel
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PEC
Here Lies the Librarian (age 9-12)
by Richard Peck
identity ... humor ... historical
Peewee idolizes Jake, a big brother whose dreams of auto mechanic glory are fueled by the hard road coming to link their Indiana town and futures with the twentieth century. And motoring down the road comes Irene Ridpath, a young librarian with plans to astonish them all and turn Peewee's life upside down. Here Lies the Librarian, with its quirky characters, folksy setting, classic cars, and hilariously larger-than-life moments, is an offbeat, deliciously wicked comedy that is also unexpectedly moving.
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SPR
Tales of Rowan Hood Series (age 9-12)
by Nancy Springer
folklore ... adventure ... fantasy ... identity
Rosemary has nowhere to go when her beloved mother dies. She has never met her father--the outlaw Robin Hood. So she changes her name to Rowan, disguises herself as a boy, and make a perilous journey to Sherwood Forest in search of her lost father.
title: Rowan Hood: Outlaw Girl of Sherwood Forest
title: Lionclaw: a Tale of Rowan Hood
title: Outlaw Princess of Sherwood: a Tale of Rowan Hood
title: Rowan Hood Returns: the Final Chapter
title: Wild Boy: a Tale of Rowan Hood
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BYA
After the Goat Man (age 9-12)
by Betsy Cromer Byars
family ... identity ... growing up
Catalog: An overweight, sensitive boy gains the insight and strength to overcome his problems through his search for and discovery of a friend's grandfather, known as the Goat Man.
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NAM
Yang the Second and Her Secret Admirers (age 9-12)
by Lensey Namioka
identity ... friendship ... family
Yinglan Yang couldn't care less that her brother and sister have adopted all sorts of American customs. She misses China and doesn't want to fit in here. Her siblings decide that Yinglan needs help making friends in America. That's when they join forces and play matchmaker between Yinglan and Paul Eng, a Chinese American baseball player. They're certain Yinglan will never find out. Or will she?
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SNY
Gib Rides Home (age 9-12)
by Zilpha Keatley Snyder
identity ... mystery ... historical ... family
Gib Whittaker's life at Lovell House Orphanage in the early 1900s is pretty bleak. But along with hours of chores, bad food, and paddlings, the boys do get some schooling, and reading and writing are better than scrubbing floors. Still, Gib's fondest dream is to have a real family. So when Georgie Olson is adopted, Gib can't help being jealous, even when he finds out that the "adoption" really means being farmed out to work as unpaid labor until the age of 18. When Gib himself is farmed out, he arrives at the home he has always dreamed of. But he's soon aware of barely concealed tensions and secrets kept hidden from him.
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HAM
Zeely (age 9-12)
by Virginia Hamilton
identity ... family ... friendship
Geeder's summer at her uncle's farm is made special because of her friendship with a very tall, composed woman who raises hogs and who closely resembles the magazine photograph of a Watutsi queen.
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CRE
The Wanderer (age 9-12)
by Sharon Creech
identity ... adventure ... family ... illness/loss ... voyages/journeys
"The sea, the sea, the sea. It rolled and rolled and called to me. Come in, it said, come in." Thirteen-year-old Sophie hears the sea calling, promising adventure and a chance for discovery as she sets sail for England with her three uncles and two cousins. Sophie's cousin Cody isn't sure he has the strength to prove himself to the crew and to his father. Through Sophie's and Cody's travel logs, we hear stories of the past and the daily challenges of surviving at sea as The Wanderer sails toward its destination, and its passengers search for their places in the world.
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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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SLO
Finding Buck McHenry (age 9-12)
by Alfred Slote
identity ... historical ... sports
Eleven-year-old Jason, believing the school custodian Mack Henry to be Buck McHenry, a famous pitcher from the old Negro League, tries to enlist him as a coach for his Little League team by revealing his identity to the world.
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SAC
Someday Angeline (age 9-12)
by Louis Sachar
identity ... friendship ... brilliant protagonist
Nobody understands why Angeline is so smart. But being smart is causing Angeline nothing but trouble. The mean kids in school call her a freak, her teacher finds her troublesome, and even her own father doesn't know what to do with an eight-year-old girl who seems to be a genius. Angeline just wants the chance to be herself and be happy, but it's only when she makes friends who appreciate her that Angeline gets that chance.
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PAT
The Great Gilly Hopkins (age 9-12)
by Katherine Paterson
identity ... family ... friendship
An eleven-year-old foster child tries to cope with her longings and fears as she schemes against everyone who tries to be friendly.
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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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GIF
All the Way Home (age 9-12)
by Patricia Reilly Giff
identity ... historical ... sports ... friendship ... family
Brick Tiernan is devastated when fire destroys his family's apple orchard in Windy Hill, New York, in the summer of 1941. His parents are forced to take jobs in different cities, and Brick is sent to Brooklyn to live with Loretta, a family friend, until the family recovers front their financial loss. Brick feels homesick before he even gets to Brooklyn, but when he meets Martel, Loretta's adopted daughter, he discovers that they have things in common. Both are Dodgers fans, and Martel, who wonders about her real mother, has a mysterious connection to Windy Hill. In the final days of summer, Brick and Martel find a way to return to Windy Hill, where a kind elderly couple help them discover what they are each searching for-a sense of belonging and the real meaning of home.
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TAY
All-of-a-Kind Family Series (age 9-12)
by Sydney Taylor
identity ... historical ... family
Five sisters who live with their parents in New York City at the turn of the century enjoy doing everything together, especially when it involves holidays and surprises. But no one can prepare them for the biggest surprise of all in this warm, sincere tale.
title: All-of-a-Kind Family
title: Ella of All-of-a-Kind Family
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SAC
There's a Boy in the Girls' Bathroom (age 9-12)
by Louis Sachar
identity ... friendship ... school ... humor
An unmanageable, but lovable, eleven-year-old misfit learns to believe in himself when he gets to know the new school counselor, who is a sort of misfit too.
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ROD
Freaky Friday (age 9-12)
by Mary Rodgers
identity ... humor ... adventure ... family
Annabel thinks her mom has the best life. If she were a grown-up, she could do whatever she wanted! Then one morning she wakes up to find she's turned into her mother . . . and she soon discovers it's not as easy as it looks!
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PAR
The Kite Fighters (age 9-12)
by Linda Sue Park
identity ... historical ... family
In Korea in 1473, eleven-year-old Young-sup overcomes his rivalry with his older brother Kee-sup, who as the first-born son receives special treatment from their father, and combines his kite-flying skill with Kee-sup's kite-making skill in an attempt to win the New Year kite-fighting competition.
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KON
Jennifer, Hecate, Macbeth, William, McKinley, and Me, Elizabeth (age 9-12)
by E. L. Konigsburg
realistic ... identity ... friendship
Elizabeth is an only child, new in town, and the shortest kid in her class. She's also pretty lonely, until she meets Jennifer. Jennifer is...well, different. She's read Macbeth. She never wears jeans or shorts. She never says ``Please'' or ``thank you.'' And she says she is a witch.
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CUR
Bud, Not Buddy (age 9-12)
by Christopher Curtis
the arts ... identity ... voyages/journeys ... historical ... family ... brilliant protagonist
Ten-year-old Bud, a motherless boy living in Flint, Michigan, during the Great Depression, escapes a bad foster home and sets out in search of the man he believes to be his father--the renowned bandleader, H.E. Calloway of Grand Rapids.
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CLE
A Week in the Woods (age 9-12)
by Andrew Clements
identity ... survival ... adventure ... school
The fifth-grade Week in the Woods is a beloved tradition of Hardy Elementary, where Mark Chelmsley (the Fourth) is pretty much killing time before his parents send him off to an exclusive prep school. But then Mark realizes the Week might be a chance to prove to Mr. Maxwell that he's not just another of the slacker kids the teacher can't stand.
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CLE
Dear Mr. Henshaw (age 9-12)
by Beverly Cleary
identity ... friendship ... authorship ... letters/journal
In his letters to his favorite author, ten-year-old Leigh reveals his problems in coping with his parents' divorce, being the new boy in school, and generally finding his own place in the world.
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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.

Juana Briones Elementary School, Sat Aug 25 11:55:27 2012
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