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December 19, 2014

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Between a Rock and a Hard Place: Characters with Tough Choices │ JLG’s Booktalks to Go

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We all make difficult choices. Some are harder than others. In the following selections by the editors at Junior Library Guild, kids fight with their siblings, adjust to parents with chronic illnesses, and fight racial prejudice. Sharing these titles with your middle graders will show them that they are not alone.

The Human Body—Animated | Touch and Go

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Through detailed diagrams, informative animations, and a few exercises, two colorful apps offer students up-close, interactive looks at human body systems.

Hearing the World: Fiction and nonfiction audiobooks from around the globe | Listen In

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December brings with it the close of the calendar year, giving us time to reflect on and celebrate the diversity of our world’s cultures. Audiobooks, especially those that represent common human experiences and examine global heritage and customs, afford listeners an opportunity to hear stories from around the world.

This article was published in School Library Journal's December 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Bibliotherapy for Teens: An Expanded Booklist

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Our November feature article and booklist “Bibliotherapy for Teens” by Erin E. Moulton received an outpouring of positive feedback from readers. Here’s an updated booklist with readers’ suggestions.

Riffs on Classic Tales | New Fiction for Young Adults

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A number of young adult authors continue to adapt, interpret, and honor classic novels and short stories in tales that have proven to be fascinating companion titles to explore in classrooms or as independent reading choices.

New Storytime Treasures: Future Classics Today │ JLG’s Booktalks to Go

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Looking for new titles to replace storytime favorites? Look no further than these timeless selections from the editors at Junior Library Guild.

Feed the Need | Facts for Fact Hounds

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Driven by natural inquisitiveness and personal interests, many children find the volumes in series such as ‘Guinness World Records’ and ‘Ripley’s Believe It or Not’ irresistible. Here are a few other titles that will feed the informational needs of fact hounds.

Unbroken: The Movie, the Book, and Standout World War II Readalikes

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The buzz on Unbroken, the Angelina Jolie produced and directed film hitting theaters on December 25, is growing. Based on Laura Hillenbrand’s adult title of the same name, the movie is sure to provoke interest in the YA adaptation and other World War II era works for teens.

Bilingual and Spanish-language titles that celebrate family ties | Libro por libro

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Give thanks and celebrate family this season with these warm tales in Spanish and English.

This article was published in School Library Journal's November 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Ivan, Clara, and the Freedom Tree: History in Picture Books │ JLG’s Booktalks to Go

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How did Clara Barton, Benjamin Franklin, Ivan the gorilla, and others evolve from ordinary characters to historical superstars? Find out their backstories, and other chronicled events of times past, in these titles selected by the editors at Junior Library Guild.

Behind the Scenes: The 2014 SLJ Best Books List

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An inside look at how the SLJ book review editors chose the 70 Best Books of 2014. View a slideshow of our favorite titles and download a printable version of the list.

St. Louis School Librarian Offers LibGuide on Ferguson

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“As a librarian, I always feel like I have to share what resources are out there and the best of what is out there,” says St. Louis school librarian Katie Voss, who created an online LibGuide of materials related to the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO.

Mighty Mosasaurus | Touch and Go

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‘Mosasaurus’ is the latest app from Oceanhouse Media based on Smithsonian ‘Prehistoric Pals’ print series. This “mighty ruler of the sea” grew to 55 feet in length and weighed 20 tons.

In the Line of Fire: Perspectives on War

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Although they focus on different historical events, represent various viewpoints, and employ an assortment of formats, three new titles offer riveting perspectives of war and its devastating effects.

A Banker, a Painter, and a Music Maker: Inspirational Picture Book Biographies │ JLG’s Booktalks to Go

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Digging into someone’s past allows readers to connect to their future. Whether it’s a well-known name like Joe DiMaggio or a less-known figure like Muhammad Yunus, the subjects in the following biographies will inspire kids to overcome obstacles.

A Trio of Trailblazing Performers

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Three new picture books about three African American women born in the early 20th century resound with compelling storytelling, expressive artwork, and a sonorous message about overcoming obstacles and following one’s dreams.

Old Friends, Fresh Stories: New Middle Grade Fantasy

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Fantasy writing for children has a long and storied history, populated with all manner of heroic quests, forgotten prophecies, and strange magic. Despite its near-century of popularity, there is no sign of flagging enthusiasm for this much-beloved genre.

Dire Forecasts | Focus On Extreme Weather

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These titles look at the science behind the development of storms and other weather phenomena, the economic and human impacts, and the abilities to predict and mitigate future occurences.

This article was published in School Library Journal's November 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Bibliotherapy for Teens: Helpful Tips and Recommended Fiction

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A public librarian’s interaction with teens affirms her faith in bibliotherapy, as does her research. Read her story, along with a recommended list of realistic YA fiction. We invite you to suggest more titles.

This article was published in School Library Journal's November 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

A Mysterious Thief with an Unusual Mission| Touch and Go

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Looking for an app that offers a language-arts lesson ? The Happy Dandelion’s ‘UnStealer’ fits that bill, but does it succeed as story?