Book Ideas for the Holidays or anytime

For 6-9 Year Olds

A Hundred Billion Trillion Stars

By: Seth Fishman

Illustrated by: Isabell Greenberg

Genre: Nonfiction

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

Earth is surrounded by stars of which the sun is only one. Earth is blue “because it is covered by 370,000,000.000,000,000,000 gallons of water.” It has trillions of trees and millions of cities …. but “only one of YOU…” This imaginative presentation is enjoyable to read and may well encourage closer observation of what is all around. 

 

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Before She Was Harriet

By: Lesa Cline-Ransome

Illustrated by: James Ransome

Genre: Nonfiction, Biography

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

“Here she sits/an old woman/tired and worm/her legs still/her back achy … but before wrinkles formed” she was a young woman who could walk for miles, worked for women’s right to vote and much, much more. This unique and touching introduction to Harriet Tubman is lovingly revealed and handsomely illustrated.

 

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Big Cats

By: Seymour Simon

Genre: Nonfiction

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

Updated information about tigers, leopards, and other big cats is presented in a readable text and full-color photographs. Where to find additional information is included at the end of this large formatted, handsome book.

 

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Charlie & Mouse & Grumpy

By: Laurel Snyder

Illustrated by: Emily Hughes

Genre: Fiction

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

Charlie and Mouse enjoy a weekend with their grandfather known as Grumpy. The gentle family story of and older and younger brother enjoying each other and the company of an older relative is cozily illustrated and divided into short chapters, similar to the first story about these characters, Charlie & Mouse.

 

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Dangerous Jane

By: Suzanne Slade

Illustrated by: Alice Ratterree

Genre: Nonfiction, Biography

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

Jane Addams hated war. But what could one person do? Jane found a way, dedicating her life to peace and won a Nobel Peace Prize for her commitment to it. Soft watercolors create a period in time, the people and places where Jane worked to complement the straightforward, engaging narration. Additional biographical information is included.

 

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Family Poems for Every Day of the Week / Poemas familiares para cada día de la semana

By: Francisco Alarcón

Illustrated by: Maya Christina Gonzalez

Genre: Poetry

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

Every day is a celebration, from Sunday with grandparents to an all-play day Saturday. Short, lively poems are exuberantly illustrated and presented in Spanish and English.

 

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Her Right Foot

By: Dave Eggers

Illustrated by: Shawn Harris

Genre: Nonfiction

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

Meet the Statue of Liberty. She came from across an ocean like many of the people she continues to welcome; that’s why her right foot is mid-stride, of course. Strong graphics and factual but timely, tongue-in-cheek text presents Lady Liberty as never seen before.

 

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Imagine That! How Dr. Seuss Wrote The Cat in the Hat

By: Judy Sierra

Illustrated by: Kevin Hawkes

Genre: Nonfiction, Biography

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

It was good to be a kid in 1954. There were nickel doughnuts and one-cent lollipops. At the same time though, learning to read was just plain boring. That is until Dr. Seuss came up with an idea! Straight narration and Seussian rhyme combine with both realistic and imaginative illustrations to present the story of how entertaining leveled books began.

 

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Jasmine Toguchi, Super Sleuth

By: Debbi Michiko Florence

Illustrated by: Elizabet Vukovic

Genre: Fiction

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

Jasmine Toguchi (first introduced in Jasmine Toguchi, Mochi Queen), uses her detective skills to find out why her best friend and older sister are no longer excited about the Japanese celebration of Girl’s Day. Characters and events are recognizable and engaging to cause a chuckle or two.

 

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Last Laughs: Prehistoric Epitaphs

By: J. Patrick Lewis, Jane Yolen

Illustrated by: Stewart Timmons

Genre: Poetry

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

They’re all gone now but a group of dinosaurs comes back to life even if only while reading funny epitaphs. Equally comic illustrations and a smattering of factual information are included on the pages of this clever collection.

 

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Libba: The Magnificent Musical Life of Elizabeth Cotten

By: Laura Veirs

Illustrated by: Tatyana Fazlalizadeh

Genre: Nonfiction, Biography

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

Elizabeth “Libba” Cotton heard music all around her growing up in North Carolina. She became a self-taught guitarist using her brother’s instrument until he moved. Her musical talent remained hidden until it was uncovered after she started working for Pete Seeger. Libba’s story is told effectively with swirling text and soft illustrations in a limited palette. 

 

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Miguel's Brave Knight: Young Cervantes and His Dream of Don Quixote

By: Margarita Engle

Illustrated by: Raul Colón

Genre: Biography, Poetry

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

A vivid imagination helped Miguel Cervantes to grow beyond a tough childhood and to create a cultural icon: Don Quixote. Luminous illustrations and rich poetry follow young Miguel to adulthood where his creativity triumphs. A note about Cervantes from the author and illustrator conclude this stunning book.

 

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Pigeon P.I.

By: Meg McLaren

Genre: Fiction, Mystery

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

Pigeon has given up his private detective work. That is until a young canary goes missing along with other colorful birds. Young mystery lovers will enjoy the humor and graphic comic elements in this comical mystery.

 

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Red Again

By: Barbara Lehman

Genre: Fiction, Mystery

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

A boy on a bike spies a red book by the side of the road. As he reads it in his chilly seaside village, he sees a girl in a boat in a much warmer place reading a red book, and so on. Could children be connected by a book? No words are needed in this intriguing, surprisingly sophisticated story which unfolds through illustrations in a companion volume to The Red Book.

 

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Robinson

By: Peter Sís

Genre: Fiction, Biography

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

All the other kids have pirate costumes for their adventures while the narrator has one like Robinson Crusoe. When teased about it, he heads to his bedroom where he dreams he is marooned on an island, savoring the solitary adventure until his friends return. Signature illustrations are evocative, detailed, and delicate, accompanied by brief but effective narration.

 

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Sergeant Reckless: The True Story of the Little Horse Who Became a Hero

By: Patricia McCormick

Illustrated by: Iacopo Bruno

Genre: Nonfiction

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

A small, underfed horse was found by a group of Marines during the Korean War. She was named Sergeant Reckless for her courage and willingness to carry ammunition into battle. The story of this faithful, brave animal is presented in a gripping narration and realistic (though not explicit) illustrations. 

 

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Song of the Wild: A First Book of Animals

By: Nicola Davies

Illustrated by: Petr Horacek

Genre: Nonfiction, Poetry

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

Large pages are used to present animals from around the world. Lyrical language and lush mixed media illustrations generate wonder and appreciation for a host of animals from habitats in the sea, land, and air.

 

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The Big Bad Fox

By: Benjamin Renner

Genre: Fiction

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

Fox wants to be bad but when he takes on the hens, poor fox always loses. But if he hatches some eggs, he’ll have his own chickens to eat … except is it possible to eat someone who calls you “mom”? Cartoons and dialog from a French comic book artist are fresh, funny, and very satisfying.

 

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The Great Art Caper

By: Victoria Jamieson

Genre: Fiction

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

GW, the hamster enjoys his evenings with his animal friends and is even beginning to like the second graders with whom he shares the room during the day. It is up to GW and his friends save the art show from the dastardly plot of mouse Harriet and her minions in this amusing, short graphic novel. A new story in the Pets on the Looseseries.

 

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The Legend of Rock Paper Scissors

By: Drew Daywalt

Genre: Fiction

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

The legendary battles between Rock, Paper, and Scissors started long ago in the Kingdom of Backyard, the Empire of Mom’s Home Office, and in the Kitchen Realm. Exaggerated, expressive, and over-the-top illustrations bring the tale of the saga that is still plays out on hands everywhere.

 

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Vincent Can't Sleep

By: Barb Rosenstock

Illustrated by: Mary GrandPre

Genre: Nonfiction, Biography

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

Vincent Van Gogh often had trouble sleeping. As a child, his parents fussed but Vincent continued to travel in his imagination, which precluded sleep. Glowing illustrations suggest the artist’s style and a rhythmic text provides an engaging introduction to Van Gogh and his powerful paintings. An author’s note includes additional information as well as images of several of Van Gogh’s paintings.

 

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Where Are You Going, Baby Lincoln?

By: Kate DiCamillo

Illustrated by: Chris Van Dusen

Genre: Fiction

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

Baby Lincoln decides to go on a ‘necessary journey’ away from her bossy older sister, Eugenia. Baby returns with lots of stories and a sister who missed her. Fans or newcomers to the Deckawoo Driveseries are sure to enjoy this charming, gentle, and very funny story.

 

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Winter Dance

By: Marion Dane Bauer

Illustrated by: Richard Jones

Genre: Fiction

Age Level: 6-9

Reading Level: Independent Reader

 

Fox realizes that winter is coming as the first snowflakes fall on its nose. Forest dwellers from the smallest to the largest offer advice, but when the fox meets its companion, they do what foxes do in winter: dance! Textured illustrations accompany the well-paced narration to suggest animal behavior and simple delight.

 

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For 9-12 Year Olds