Wednesday, March 30, 2011


I am in the process of updating my posts to include when available, Lexile level, number of pages, and the ages for which the book is appropriate. So far, only about 1/2 the books I've looked up have had a Lexile measure. On many of the picture books you will notice that the Lexile number is preceded by the letters "AD," meaning Adult Directed. Many picture books are usually read to a child, rather than the child reading them independently. Although seemingly easy reading, some picture books actually have pretty high Lexile measures, and could present a challenging independent reading experience to an age-appropriate reader. However, an adult may want to initially read the book along with the child.

I hope these additions make "Miss Laurie Found a Story!" a more helpful tool in your search for quality reading material for your child.

Happy Reading!
Miss Laurie

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


Lexile   660          Pages    224         Ages      9-12
AR Quiz No. 141157 EN Fiction
  IL: MG - BL: 4.2 - AR Pts: 4.0
  AR Quiz Types: RP

Evie is 13 years old and lives with her mother. Her father, a celebrity chef, lives with his new wife and they are expecting twins. Dad also has "custody" of their dog, Mousse, and Evie misses the dog as much as she misses her dad. Evie takes a cooking class so she can talk about it with her dad and meets Corey, her cute cooking partner. Corey gives her funny feelings the likes of which she has never felt before! Mix in a rather free-spirited cooking teacher (who also happens to be Corey's aunt) and a cranky neighbor that Evie develops a relationship with and you have a recipe for a truly enjoyable book!

Eggs Over Evie explores the many issues teens today often have to deal with, and Evie handles those issues with intelligence and aplomb. It also includes several great sounding recipes, some helpful kitchen tips, and quotes from famous chefs like Ina Garten, Mario Batali, Bobby Flay, and many more.

Happy Reading,
Miss Laurie

Come to the Lake County Public Library for your copy of Eggs Over Evie or click here to order a copy for delivery to your nearest branch.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Roses Are Pink, Your Feet Really Stink by Diane deGroat

Lexile    AD590          Pages     30          Ages      4-8
AR Quiz No. 19592 EN Fiction
  IL: LG - BL: 3.4 - AR Pts: 0.5
  AR Quiz Types: RP, VP

Gilbert's class is going to have a Valentine's Day party and Gilbert has a stack of cards that he needs to write a poem in for each of his classmates. A little girl in Gilbert's class, Patty, had caught his eye. He picked the biggest card and wrote her a nice poem:  "Roses are red, violets are blue. Your eyes are nice, and I like you."

Lewis and Margaret are also in Gilbert's class but he doesn't like them much. They have both either done or said hurtful things to Gilbert so he writes them mean poems. He writes to Lewis: "Violets are blue, roses are pink. Your feet are big, and they really stink." Margaret's card is also hurtful. Then he thinks that maybe they will be mean and hurtful to him again if he signs his name to the cards, so he signs Margaret's card with Lewis' name and Lewis' card with Margaret's name. As usual, when you do something wrong you get caught and Gilbert is no exception. Margaret and Lewis figure out what Gilbert has done and let the whole class know. Now the whole class is mad at Gilbert - even Patty!

Do things work out for Gilbert? Does the class forgive him for being mean?

Come to the Lake County Public Library and check out a copy of  Roses are Pink, Your Feet Really Stink today, or click here to use your library card number and PIN to order a copy for delivery to your favorite branch.

Happy Reading!
Miss Laurie

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Chidi Only Likes Blue: An African Book of Colors by Ifeoma Onyefulu

Lexile:    Not Rated
Pages:     24
Ages:     4-8

Nneka and her little brother Chidi live in Nigeria, a country on the western coast of Africa. One of the games they play is Colors. When Nneka asks Chidi what his favorite color is, he always says, "Blue, because it is the color of the sky and my best shirt." Nneka wants to know why he always chooses blue and their mother suggests it's because he doesn't know the names of the other colors. So Nneka decides to teach Chidi the names of the other colors, and tell him why she likes them.

On the surface, this is a book of colors - and it is that. But upon closer inspection it is so much more! It is a lesson in diversity and culture, which is a lesson well learned in our ever "shrinking" world. The rich, colorful photographs and the explanations of the different customs makes Chidi Only Likes Blue  an experience  that will expand both you and your child's world in an interesting, enjoyable way.

Happy Reading, 
Miss Laurie

Visit any Lake County Public Library branch for a copy of  Chidi Only Likes Blue or click here to order with your library card number and PIN.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Slugs in Love by Susan Pearson, illustrated by Kevin O'Malley

Lexile:     AD590
Pages:     32
Ages:     4-8

This has to be one of the cutest books ever! Who would think a great romance would have slugs as it's main characters? : ) Here is the synopsis from the flyleaf:

"Marylou loved everything about Herbie - how his slime trail glistened in the dark, how he could stretch himself thin to squeeze inside the cellar window, how he always found the juiciest tomato. But Marylou was a shy slug. How could she get Herbie to notice her?"

The combination of the sweet story from author Susan Pearson and the wonderful, colorful illustrations by Kevin O'Malley makes Slugs in Love a book well worth reading, whether you're 5 or 50!

Peace, Love, and Reading,
Miss Laurie

Come to the Lake County Public Library today to check out a copy of Slugs in Love, or click here to reserve a copy with your library card number and PIN for pickup at your favorite branch.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Bear With the Sword by Davide Cali and Gianluca Foli

Lexile:    Not Rated
Pages:     32
Ages:     4-8

Bear had a sword that he was very proud of.  He would tell everyone that his sword would cut anything in two and to prove it he would cut up everything he could get his hands on.  One day, he cut down an entire forest, just because he could.  He didn't stop and think about the other animals that lived in the forest.  Why should he?  He had his fortress to live in that he had built with his own two paws.  Then one day his fortress is destroyed by a flood and Bear is furious.

So begins a "House that Jack Built" type story, showing the consequences of Bear's hasty actions.  He finds the broken dam and says to the two little beavers that are the keepers of the dam, "You have destroyed my fortress. Now I must cut you in two." They say it isn't their fault, it is the fault of the pigdeer who scared them away from the dam. So then Bear goes looking for the pigdeer. The blame is passed from the beavers to the pigdeer, to the fox, to the birds. Suddenly, the blame circles back around to Bear who has sworn to cut in two whoever is responsible for the destruction of his fortress.

What does Bear do?

I like this book because it is rich in lessons for children. First of all, it teaches about suffering the consequences of your actions and to think things through before acting. It also teaches about taking care of things upon which other people depend. And it covers the growing problem of destruction of our forests and the domino effect it can have. Come to any branch of the Lake County Public Library and check out a copy of The Bear with the Sword, or click here  and with your library card number and PIN, you can reserve a copy for pickup at your nearest branch.

Peace, Love, and Reading,

Miss Laurie

Monday, March 14, 2011

Piggies in the Pumpkin Patch by Mary Peterson and Jennifer Rofe

Lexile:    Not Rated
Pages:    28
Ages:     4-8

Piggies in the Pumpkin Patch deals with prepositions - in, behind, over, under, through. The fun story - the piggies get into some situations they maybe should have avoided - and cute, colorful illustrations will make this an enjoyable read for you and your child. It's fun to make a big deal out of some of the situations - "Oooh no! The piggies are in the big bull's pen! Do you think they should be in there?"

I like this book partly because I'm addicted to grammar. My kids call me the Grammar Nazi. : ) The other reason I like this book is just because I think it's cute. Sometimes that's all you need!

Peace, Love, and Reading,
Miss Laurie

Visit any branch of the Lake County Public Library today and get your copy of Piggies in the Pumpkin Patch or click here  to reserve your copy for pickup at any local branch.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Children Make Terrible Pets by Peter Brown

Lexile:    Not Rated
Pages:    40
Ages:     4-8

Has your son or daughter ever brought home something live and said, "Oh, look, Mom! Can I keep it, huh? Can I?" You look and low and behold, there is your little darling standing there with something smelly, like a ferret (which are fun, but sorry, they're smelly!), or something dirty (or what we perceive as dirty), like a rodent, or something that just makes you go, "Ew," like a snake or a spider. To which you reply, "Oh, honey, I don't know! You know, I have heard that those make terrible pets!"

Well, it seems we aren't the only ones who experience this scenario. In Children Make Terrible Pets by Peter Brown, Lucy Bear is out in the woods when she happens across a little boy and falls in love. She takes him home to Mama Bear and asks if she can keep him to which Mama Bear replies, "Lucille Beatrice Bear! Don't you know that children make terrible pets?" There have been times in my child-rearing years that I may have agreed! : ) Anyway, Lucy talks her mother into letting her keep the little boy she has named "Squeaker" because of the cute little sound he makes. But Mama Bear has decreed that Squeaker will be Lucy's responsibility and she would not take care of him for her. Lucy agrees and the saga begins.

Do things go smoothly for Lucy and Squeaker? Do they live together forever and always, never to part? Come to the Lake County Public Library today and check out a copy of Children Make Terrible Pets, or click here to use your library card number and PIN to reserve a copy for pick-up at your most convenient branch.

Peace, Love, and Reading,
Miss Laurie

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

llama llama mad at mama by Anna Dewdney

Lexile:    AD370
Pages:    31
Ages:     4-8

Llama Llama is playing and having fun when Mama Llama makes him stop to go shopping. He isn't happy about it, but Mama Llama has promised him a treat after the shopping is done. Llama Llama is patient for as long as he can manage and then has a temper tantrum in the store. All of you parents out there - does this ring any bells for you? : )

Mama Llama, to her credit, does not get angry. She firmly tells him, "Llama Llama, that's enough!" and proceeds to explain that she doesn't like shopping either, but it makes it better for her because she gets to do it with him. She then asks for his help in cleaning up the mess and they finish up the shopping together, making a game of it.

I like this rhyming book for the way it shows how to handle a situation we have probably all been in at one time or another without getting angry. Diverting a child's attention and asking for their help often helps a bad state of affairs get back on the right track. The colorful illustrations should hold your child's attention, and I think Llama Llama is just one of the cutest things in fur!

Peace, Love, and Reading,
Miss Laurie

Come to the Lake County Public Library today for your copy of Llama Llama Mad at Mama or click here and with your library card number and PIN, reserve a copy for delivery to your nearest branch.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

PRINCESS K.I.M. and the lie that grew by Maryann Cocca-Leffler

Lexile:    AD430
Pages:    29
Ages:     6-9

Kim is the new girl in a new town on the first day of school and she is afraid that her new classmates won't like her.  When the teacher introduces her, another girl in the class says, "Not another Kim! MY name is Kim!"

Kim thinks, "I have to make them like me!"  So she tells a little bitty lie.  "My name is not Kim. It's K.I.M.  It stands for Katherine Isabella Marguerite." From there the lie grows, and grows, and grows!
Pretty soon things get out of hand and Kim's classmates begin to suspect that she is maybe not telling the whole truth and Kim's life gets complicated.

Does Kim confess to her classmates?  Do they forgive her for her deception? Check out a copy of Princess K.I.M. and the lie that grew or click here and reserve a copy for pick-up at your local branch of the Lake County Public Library.

This book has wonderful, colorful illustrations and tells the story in a way that shows children how even a tiny, little lie can grow into a big, green monster. It also deals with being a new kid in a new school and shows that just being yourself is the best way to make the kind of friends that you want to have as friends.

Peace, love, and reading,
Miss Laurie