February 2012 Book Reviews
Author: Hill Country Bookstore

For Younger Readers
Along a Long Road

by Frank Viva
The title alone lets you know that this book is going to be a delight to read because the language is playful and rhythmic. To go along with the story are striking graphic illustrations in five joyful colors. As this story winds up and out and down and around on a bicycle there are words of encouragement and inspiration for the reader to keep on going and follow that road! This is a premier book for the author with hopefully many to follow. For ages 3 to 6.

A Ball for Daisy
by Chris Raschka
Daisy’s anguish when her favorite ball is destroyed by a bigger dog is a story of love and loss. Although the book is nearly wordless, the author conveys in pictures the joy and sadness that having a special toy can bring…a lesson that most children will experience at a very young age. This affectionate story will appeal to young dog lovers, parents and teachers who have children dealing with the loss of something special. For ages 3 to 7.

For Older Readers
Tuesdays at the Castle

by Jessica Day George
Princess Celie’s favorite days are Tuesdays because on Tuesdays the castle adds a new room, or turret, or sometimes even an entire wing. No one, except Celie ever knows what the castle will do next. You see, Celie takes the time to map out the new additions. This ability comes in handy when the King and Queen are ambushed and their fate is unknown. It’s up to Celie to protect their home and save their kingdom. This delightful book is the first in a new series from this popular author. For ages 8 to 12.

An Elephant in the Garden
by Michael Morpurgo
Michael Morpurgo is the author of “War Horse,” which has been turned into a Broadway play and a hit movie. “An Elephant in the Garden” is inspired by historical war-time truths as well. Marlene, a zoo elephant, is threatened with destruction until a family persuades the zookeeper to let Marlene stay hidden in their garden. When their city is bombed, the family is forced to flee, but how can they keep themselves safe with an elephant in tow? Luckily they meet Peter, a Canadian navigator who risks his own capture to save the family. This story of an unlikely group of survivors shows that kindness and love are the best weapons of all. For ages 10 to 16.

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