Sunday, November 1, 2009

More Book Reviews for Cybils

Born to Fly by Michael Ferrari
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Pages: 212
Source: Library

Bird Mcgill loves to fly. She is only eleven years old. Her father repairs airplanes. On her birthday her father lets her try to land the plane. She almost does it. Dad has to step in and help out. After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Bird's father finds himself drafted. To make matters worse for Bird a new boy has joined her class. His name is Kenji. The two of them become friends and have joined forces to find a spy. The book was full of historical information. Most of the students I teach don't know how we treated Japanese Americans during this war. I am hoping that it may bring some understanding of past prejudices. This was an awesome book

The Brooklyn Nine - Alan Gratz

Publisher: dial

Pages: 299

Source: Library

This was an interesting book. The book is told as nine short stories that are loosely related. They are all tied together through the theme of baseball. The chapters are told as if they were innings in a baseball game. The first inning we are introduced to Felix Schneider playing ball with his friends. He had stowed away on a boat to New York and lives with his uncle. He conciders himself the fastest runner in New York. After running errands for his uncle he stops to watch the KInickerbockers play a game of baseball. When the firebells ring he joins the Knickerbockers who are firefighters. Felix helps rescue a firefighter and rushins into a building to complete the firefighter's task only to be caught in the explosion that permanently injures his legs. He decides he will not let his injure keep him from his love of baseball. In the second inning the next generation from Felix's family is introduced. We find ourselves in the Civil War. Felix's son Louis is a Yankee soldier who finds himself with an injured Confederate soldier. As a token of friendship and good luck he gives his prized baseball to the injured Confederate soldier and receives a baseball bat in return. We find another relative who loses his father's bat. These stories are all linked. I found it strange yet fitting that the first character injured his legs in a fire and in the last inning Snider's house burns down and he breaks his leg trying to get out of his second story bedroom. While staying with his Uncle Dave, he finds some baseball "junk". His uncle encourages him to research it and try to find out as much information as he can. One thing he finds is a baseball bat and an old handsewn baseball. He learns that much of the history is lost yet he is able to make a connection to part of it. I really enjoyed the author's notes at the endof the book. It explained a lot since I am not a baseball follower and was not sure what was and what was not fact. I did enjoy the book.

Bull Rider by Suzanne Morgan Williams

Publisher: Margaret k.McElderry Books

Pages: 241

Source: Library

Cam O'Mare loves riding his skateboard. His brother Ben is a champion bull rider. As Ben waits to return to Iraq as a marine he tries to convince his little brother to start bull riding. The first time Cam rides a bull it is because his brother's friend called him a little girl. The thrill he felt on that first short ride hooked Cam. When Cam's brother is severly injured in Iraq, Cam uses the bull riding to deal with his own emotions. It is bull riding he uses to force his brother to not give up. This was a great book. I couldn't put it down. Ir eadi it from cover to cover.

Captain Nobody - Dean Pitchford

G.P. Putnam, 2009

Pages: 195

Source: Library

Newt Newman is not your average fourth grader. He is the superhero of Appleton. Newts older brother is a football star and Newt looks up to him. The talk around school is about the upcoming football game and Halloween. As Newt and his friends sit talking, people step over them as if they are not even there. It is then that Newt's friends decide they need to dress up as one of Newt's superhero characters that he draws. Unfortunately Newt can't see himself as any of them. The night of the big game Newt is crowded out of his seat and then loses his ticket. He is forced to stand outside and watch through the fence. He watches his brother make the best touchdown of the night. Unfortunately his brother doesn't get up off of the ground. His parents who seem unable to function without Newt's help are so focused on their son Chris that they overlook Newt's needs. On Halloween he decides he is not going when his friends show up. He tumbles down the stairs in clothes that had belonged to his brother. His friends decide he is going and so they help him create his costume. When someone asks him who he is he doesn't answer. They ask about the initials on his suit and that is when he becomes Captain Nobody. Newt wears the costume to school the next day because his mother washed the clothes but didn't dry them. He feels a confidence he has never felt before. By doing several good deeds, and helping out friends, he finds himself in the news. One final event that only Captain Nobody can solve lands him in the hospital with the admiration of his family and friends. This was a fun book to read. As fun as it was you could feel his emotional turmoil. This is a book that I would definately recommend.

The opinions expressed in these review are mine alone and do not represent the views of the panel.

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