South Author by Patrick Mcdonnell

Absolutely charming and wordless story of friendship and helping others in trouble. The drawings are simple and poignant, and allows the reader(s) to narrate the story for themselves. I've given this book to German children in Berlin, and the lack of language is a plus, although the theme is universal. 

- reviewed by Bill at Books Inc. Market St

A Home for Bird by Phillip C. Stead

How does he do it? Author/illustrator Stead has created another masterpiece to add to the canon of best friend books. Here Vernon the frog befriends an (inanimate) cuckoo bird who doesn't speak--Vernon assumes because he's homesick. So the two friends set off to find "home." Take one cup of Jeffers' LOST AND FOUND, add 4 tablespoons of WHEN BLUE MET EGG and handsell to any fan of the Bonny Becker Bear & Mouse books. And don't miss the copyright page!

- Reviewed by Summer at Books Inc. Laurel Village

Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson

After reading Paterson’s novel, I found myself shocked: how did I get through life without reading this?  If you’re looking for a Juvenile novel that changes your outlook on life especially with regard to how people change us forever, then I’d recommend you read this.  Jesse Aaron, Paterson’s fifth grade main character, struggles to find courage as both a runner and as a talented artist.  Leslie Burke then enters his life.  Together, they build the kingdom of Terabithia where their friendship and creativity blooms.  Despite the tragedy that occurs, this novel introduces serendipity to the young and invites older readers to always return to Terabithia.  For ages 10+.

- Reviewed by Jamie from Books Inc. Market St

The Circus Ship by Chris Van Dusen

My new favorite storytime book, The Circus Ship is an exciting and fun story by master author and illustrator Chris Van Dusen.  With bright stylized illustrations and perfectly metered rhymes, it is the perfect read-aloud book.  When a ship full of circus animals is marooned on a small island off the coast of Maine, the residents are quite put out at first.  However, they soon find that the animals and people can help each and get along very well even on a small island.  Van Dusen has a knack for working good vocabularly words into his rhymes very smoothly and combined with his fantastic illustrations, The Circus Ship is a treat for both kids and adults!

-Reviewed by Anna from Books Inc. Chestnut St

Mr. and Mrs. Bunny--Detectives Extraordinaire! by Mrs. Bunny translated by Polly Horvath


Written with a delightfully British sense of humor, Mr. and Mrs. Bunny is always completely silly without ever feeling ridiculous.  Madeline's parents have been kidnapped by a band of people who look suspiciously like foxes.  Luckily Madeline, who happens to speak Bunny, runs into a pair of newly minted detectives, Mr. and Mrs. Bunny, who chose the profession because they would get to wear fedoras.  The meeting of the three unlikely friends leads to a madcap adventure involving garlic-bread loving marmots and foxes who learned to speak English by watching sitcoms, and also shows the importance of those rare friends who can become your family.

-Reviewed by Anna from Books Inc. Chestnut St.

Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo



I read this while waiting for my flight and found myself so completely engrossed in this Russian-based fantasy that I didn’t mind the flight delay.  Orphans Alina and Mal met when they were kids and became inseparable growing up. Years later, they are still together & serving in the army – Alina in the cartographers corps and Mal with the trackers. When attacked in the Shadow Fold, Alina brings forth an unbelievable amount of Grisha magic that she never knew she had. Taken away from her best friend Mal for magical training, Alina enters a new world of court intrigue and power politics where to survive, she must figure out whom to trust and the games being played. Bardugo has crafted a stunning plot-driven story with a character that you can’t help but root for. Additionally, the Russian-influenced world building is certainly unique to the genre.

- Reviewed by Connie from Books Inc. Opera Plaza


In Shadow and Bone Bardugo has created a unque world filled with magic, Russian culture, and flawed but engaging characters.  When her previously unknown powers are revealed, Alina is ripped away from her best friend Mal, the only family she has ever known, and put into the power of the mysterious Darkling, the charismatic and powerful leader of a magical order.  Suddenly thrust into a world of luxury and secrets and hailed as the savior of her nation, Alina must figure out who she wants to be and who she can trust before it's too late.  This book was exactly what I wanted when I picked it up, a well-written, utterly engrossing YA fantasy.

- Reviewed by Anna from Books Inc. Chestnut Street


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