Joan Bauer has done it again! The author of such powerful novels as Hope Was Here and Rules of the Road has written a funny, warm story set in New York State’s apple country. 16-year-old Hildy Biddle is devoted to her family’s orchard, the extended relatives with whom she lives, and her work as a journalist on the high school newspaper. When a sinister presence in town begins making headlines, Hildy is not afraid to pare away (excuse the pun) the layers of fear and deceit to discover the truth at the core.
A manatee is injured by the gentle animal’s greatest threat–propellers of a motorboat–and rescuers rush to bring her to a rehabilitation center. The huge animal has a surprise for her caretakers: she is expecting a baby. After the new mother successfully gives birth and her wounds begin to heal, she and her newborn are prepared for release into the wild. Bright, mood-appropriate illustrations enhance this account based on a true incident.
Zoe has a dream: to be a concert pianist and play at Carnegie Hall. However, her goal appears farther away when her father buys her an electronic organ instead of a piano. Deciding to make the best of the situation, the eleven-year-old begins to take lessons. When her teacher sees that Zoe has musical talent, she encourages her to enter a competition. What unfolds makes this novel by a first-time writer an unforgettable story.
Zilpha Keatley Snyder’s first novel has not lost any of its charm. Harry is an ordinary eleven-year-old boy facing another boring summer–but his prospects change when he assists an unusual elderly gentleman on a bus. In return for his help, the old man gives Harry a potion that will give the boy wings. How Harry makes use of his gift makes for an entertaining and, at the same time, uplifting read.
Until next time, keep those pages turning!