Below are previous “SPOTLIGHT” books. All are available for checkout thru our Stevens Library Catalog.
Ivy Aberdeen’s Letter to the World by Ashely Herring Blake. As a tornado rips thru her town, the home of twelve year old Ivy is destroyed and her notebook containing pictures of girls holding hands goes missing. As her family becomes more distracted with their living situation, Ivy’s notebook pictures begin appearing in her locker with encouragement to share and talk with others. Ivy contemplates her feelings and struggles to relate to those around her as their actions, though well-meaning, are not helpful, even a bit destructive. A book about trust, understanding, honesty, friendship, family & love. For mature readers.
Ban This Book by Alan Gratz. When fourth-grader Anne’s favorite book in the whole world (From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E Frankweiler– read it!) is banned from the school library, usually soft-spoken, go-with-the-flow Anne quietly fights back with her BBLL (Banned Books Locker Library). A great read about choice, access, censorship, persistence and the effect (good and bad) one person’s action can have on all of those. A likely future Stevens Book Club choice – imagine the discussions! A most meaningful book for this teacher-librarian AND mom.
Dreamers by Yuyi Morales. The 2019 Pura Belpre Award Winner (best picture book celebrating Latinx culture) but oh, so much more. A retelling of the author’s experience as she and her young son discover and build their lives as immigrants with the help of the public libraries of San Francisco. This book was lovingly shared at a STARS assembly by a former Stevens student and the response was heartwarming. I get all verklempt just writing about it . . .Definitely an author and illustrator to know, explore and cherish.
We are Water Protectors written by Carole Lindstrom, illustrated by Michaela Goade. The 2021 Caldecott award winner is a loving tribute to the indigenous-led movements across North America to safeguard the Earth’s water supply. With poetic text and symbolism, stunning, vivid & inspirational watercolor illlustrations and a strong, young heroine, this is a book for the Earth Warrior in us all.
Nowhere Boy by Katherine Marsh. A thrilling story of a young boy, Ahmed who finds himself alone and penniless in Brussels after fleeing Syria. A clever subplot is woven in tying a bit of World War II history into Ahmed’s fate. A must read for historical adventure fiction lovers!
Paper Wishes by Lois Sepahban. The story of 10 year-old Manami and her family’s forced evacuation from Bainbridge Island to the Manzanar internment camp in California. A beautiful telling from the child’s point of view, including the deep despair that remains after her dog is ripped away from her and left on the train platform. Depsite such a sad premise, it’s a story about love and persistence.
Mia Mayhem series by Kara West. At eight years old, Mia Macarooney is ecstatic to learn that she comes from a family of superheroes AND has been accepted into the Program for in-Training Superheroes (the PITS). Who can resist a superhero who’s also kind of klutz and causes trouble whereever she goes?! An 8 book series!