Tag Archives: children’s books

News from the Perkins School for the Blind!

20 Mar

By Toni Snee

A new digital talking book player and cassettes are available from the Braille & Talking Book Library.

The Scituate Town Library has one of the new machines and several titles available for short term loans.

The equipment is free of charge to any resident of Massachusetts who is unable to read traditional print materials.  Apply for one of the new players by calling the library at 1-800-852-3133 (TTY 617-972-7690) or email the library at:  library@perkins.org




The Plant Hunters: True Stories of Their Daring Adventures to the Far Corners of the Earth

12 Jan

By Ann Lattinville

The Plant Hunters: True Stories of Their Daring Adventures to the Far Corners of the Earth

Risking your life for plants and flowers? Encountering dangerous animals, deadly diseases, remote and rugged terrain? Why on Earth…? That’s just the question Anita Silvey’s book seeks to answer. Reading more like an adventure novel than a history of botanical specimen collection, this title grabs you in the very first paragraph and delivers on the promise of answering that ubiquitous question of why– why anyone would risk their life in search, of all things, plants! With its intrigue and gritty detail, this book is sure to appeal to readers young and old, whether you’re a gardener or a budding scientist. I couldn’t put it down!


Invincible Microbe: Tuberculosis and the Never-Ending Search for a Cure

3 Jan

By Ann Lattinville

Stop into the Children’s Room at the Scituate Town Library and take a look at the display we’ve put up of fantastic books that were released in 2012. The breadth and depth of this treasure trove of reading is remarkable. From fiction to nonfiction, picture book to novel, there’s something for every reader. It will be very interesting to see who wins the Caldecott and Newbery Awards this year with such a great field of contenders from which to pick.

One of my favorite nonfiction reads from this year was Invincible Microbe: Tuberculosis and the Never-Ending Search for a Cure by Jim Murphy and Alison Blank. The book tracks the fascinating, if grim, history of tuberculosis. Illustrated with archival photographs, this history explains in detail the efforts to cure the disease before germ theory was common knowledge and takes the reader to the workings of the purpose-built hospitals (sanatoria) to care for victims of the tuberculosis. Readers will learn as well about the social stigma attached to contracting tuberculosis. The book concludes with a chilling (but not too scary for kids) account of the resurgence of cases of tuberculosis in recent years, despite our knowledge of how the disease spreads and what kinds of modern medicines can be used to combat it.

Invincible Microbe is available at the Scituate Town Library in hardback. You can also place a hold and pick it up when you are notified of its availability, as there are 16 copies of the book in the Old Colony Library Network.


Pair Invincible Microbe with Breathing Room by Marsha Hayles and a young reader will get a perspective of what was like to be a patient at one of the numerous sanatoria across the country and suffer from this disease. Scituate Town Library has one hardcover copy of this book. Both books are recommended for Grade 5 and up.


New Picture Books for Sharing!

31 Dec

By Toni Snee

This year I found selecting books for my 7-year old nephew a somewhat daunting task– what does a 7 year old like?  My nieces at this age were easy — Jan Brett and Alexandra Day– but boys are so different.  I listed to how much Ann Lattinville, the Children’s Librarian, laughed out loud as she cataloged some children’s book a few weeks before Christmas.  The following 4 books made the biggest impact, so I purchased copies for my nephew.

Unfortunately there was a bug going around my nephew’s school and he managed to catch it right before Christmas.  The nice thing about him being sick is he’s quiet and just wants to snuggle with anyone who’ll read to him.  In three days’ time, I had these stories memorized!

Dragons Love Tacos, by Adam Rubin

Dragons love tacos

Did you know that dragons LOVE tacos?  They love all kinds of tacos: chicken, beef, cheese, any kind.  But dragons don’t like salsa– any way, shape or form.  Read this story to see what happens when you mix dinosaurs + tacos + salsa.

I Loathe You, by David Slonim

I Loathe You

Did you know that monsters loathe each other?  Find out what happens when a young monster worries that his parents don’t loathe him enough.  According to Amazon, “unconditional loathing is monsterly love in this sweetly humorous picture book.”

Christmas Wombat,  by Jackie French

christmas wombat

In the second wombat book by Jackie French, the wombat thinks Christmas is just like any other day until she smells carrots.  Nothing, and I mean nothing, can come between this wombat and carrots–  including Santa’s reindeer.  Exhausted from fighting with the reindeer, wombat finds a cozy spot for a nap–  in the back of Santa’s sleigh– and learns that carrots are available all around the world.

I am so Handsome,  by Mario Ramos

I am so handsome 2

He’s back– the wolf from “I am so strong”–  now he wants to know who is the most handsome creature in the forest.  Apparently he didn’t learn his lesson the last time.

Each of these books is available in hardcover from the Scituate Town Library. Stop by and check one out! Or place a hold and we’ll call you when it’s available and then you can come and pick it up! Visit the online catalog to place your hold.

Best of 2012: Children’s Books Display

27 Dec

By Ann Lattinville

As you enter the children’s room, we have a small book case with a rotating display.  Sometimes we shelve craft and activity books– which we like to call “boredom busters”– and sometimes we shelve “staff picks”, or summer reading suggestions, or other thematic groupings. The list of ideas for featuring the collection is virtually endless.

We have decided that for the next few weeks the display will contain a mix of picture books, easy readers, and chapter books in fiction and nonfiction. What these books all have in common is that they have each appeared on “Best of 2012” book lists.

Best of 2012 Display 2

Not surprisingly, each of these titles are also books we have checked out to patrons and re-shelved over and over again. From Z is for Moose, by Kelly Bingham, (a perennial favorite at pre-school story time) to The Fairy Ring, or Elsie and Frances Fool the World, by Mary Losure, a fantastic work of nonfiction that reads like a mystery novel, there’s something that is sure to appeal to every one.

Both books mentioned in this post are available through the Old Colony Library Network. Scituate Town Library owns both as hardcover editions.  Abington Public Library owns The Fairy Ring, or Elsie and Frances Fool the World on audio CD! You can request it through the Old Colony Library Network by placing a hold. You can pick it up at the Scituate Town Library and return it to the Scituate Town Library when you’re done.

For a look at some of the “Best of 2012” book lists, follow these links to: School Library Journal, Booklist, or the New York Times.

Best of 2012 Display 1

Wonder, by R. J. Palacio

27 Dec

By Ann Lattinville

If you’re looking for a great book for a child in Grade 4-7, you might consider Wonder by R.J. Palacio.  The story’s central character is Auggie Pullman, an ordinary kid who has overcome some extraordinary circumstances. Born with genetic facial abnormalities, he’s had over 27 surgeries by they time the reader meets him at the beginning of the book. Auggie doesn’t dwell on that though and tells the reader up front that he’s not going to describe his birth defects, so don’t bother asking.  Instead, he moves the reader right past that to his more immediate problem: he’s been home-schooled up until the present day but his parents have decided it’s time for him to start Grade 5 at Beecher Prep!

Now he’s got to navigate the social minefield that is middle school. As you might expect, there are issues with being the kid who is “different.”  But with patient, humorous parents and a few good friends who have his back, Auggie’s story of his first year in school with other kids unfolds to a satisfying conclusion.

When I went to the schools to talk to students about summer reading ideas last spring, I brought this book. Kids immediately gravitated toward its striking cover and asked about it. At one school, a student was simply unable to contain his enthusiasm for this novel and impressed upon his peers that everyone should read this book, including grown-ups. Now that’s high praise from the fourth grade! And I heartily agree with that student.


For excellent parental observations about the book, see Maria Russo’s review in the New York Times.


More gift book ideas for children

5 Dec

By Ann Lattinville

Small and Tall Tales of Extinct Animals by Helene Rajcak and Damien Laverdunt
This book is a quintessential gift book: it’s over-sized, it’s beautiful, and it’s a topic that perennially fascinates budding scientists.  Extinct animals from all over the globe are featured in this book as the author presents scientific facts alongside myths about each one. Adults and children alike will enjoy spending time examining the details of the drawings as they learn about the passenger pigeon and the giant moa, among other animals.
A Gold Star for Zog by Julia Donaldson
From the author and illustrator pair who brought you Room on the Broom and The Gruffalo comes a new and equally wonderful book: A Gold Star for Zog.  Zog tries really hard at all his endeavors at dragon school but he always manages to get a bump or bruise. Lucky for him, each time he needs help, a young girl appears and knows just what to do. You have to read it to find out if Zog gets his gold star– and to find out more about the helpful girl!  Told in rhyme, this one is sure to delight a variety of youngsters.