Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Extreme Scientists

Jackson, Donna. Extreme Scientists. Houghton Mifflin: 2009. ISBN: 9780618777068.

Extreme Scientists is humorous and educational at the same time. The picture are very detailed with captions that go with the readings. The book is informational, because is has questions for the reader at the end that ask what the person does for work.

T. M. 7th Grade. Eastwood Middle School.

Ellis Island

Mortensen, Lori. Ellis Island. Illustrated by Matthew Skeens. Picture Window Books: 2009. ISBN: 9781404847057.

Ellis Island, by Lori Mortensen, is about a family that moves to Ellis Island, New York. A woman named Sophie is telling about how her grandparents got to Ellis Island and why they went there. Sophie's grandparents came from Europe so they could be free from wars and hunger. They, as well as many other immigrants, traveled to Ellis Island on boats. After they got there they started to build houses and buildings. Then a fire broke out and burned Ellis Island to the ground. After they rebuilt everything Ellis Island shut its doors. Later it reopened to immigrants without diseases. I think this would be a good book for seven to eleven year-olds.
J.Z. 7th Grade. Eastwood Middle School.

New Year at the Pier

Wayland, April Halprin. New Year at the Pier. Dial Books for Young Readers: 2009. ISBN: 9780803732797.

New Year at the Pier is about a boy named Izzy and his family. They are celebrating Rosh Hashanah, so they list all of the wrongs they have committed in the past year. After apologizing for these wrongs, they go to the Pier to "cleanse their hearts" in a ceremony called Tashlich. The artwork in the book was very amazing. There were bright colors, and the details were very well done. The illustrator used water colors to create the characters. I loved that because it makes the scene and characters look very unique.
I thought this story was a very cute way of telling what people do for Rosh Hashanah. I wish the author could have made the story more exciting, because the story didn't really catch my attention.

E.S., 7th Grade, Eastwood Middle School

The California Gold Rush

Fradin, Dennis Brindell. The California Gold Rush. Marshall Cavendish Benchmark: 2009. ISBN: 9780761430124.

The California Gold Rush is about gold. It gives some background information, including about King Tutankamen's tomb, a thumbnail of a Greek tale about using gold as currency. Then, the book goes in detail about the California gold rush. It includes some photographs, reproductions, and a few maps. This book also has a bibliography, an index, a timeline, a glossary, a further information section. I found this book fascinating. I thought it was interesting to learn about gold and the different uses of gold in the past. I enjoyed the first few pages because the information about King Tut's tomb was wonderful.
I would recommend this book to anyone ages 10 and up. Anyone who enjoys history would like this book.

E.H., 7th Grade, Eastwood Middle School

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

One Fine Trade

Miller, Bobbi. One Fine Trade. illustrated by Will Hillenbrand. 2009. Holiday House. ISBN: 9780823418367.

This book was very odd but I liked it. The girl made her dad trade the horse for many other things such as a cow and a dog just to get the silver dollar. The illustrations in One Fine Trade were done with ink and pencil on vellum. I would recommend this book to first through sixth graders. Plus, I liked the way they put the pictures.

M.L., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Monday, October 26, 2009

Japan: The People

Kalman, Bobbie. Japan: The People. 2009. Crabtree Publishing. ISBN: 9780778792970.

In Japan: The People, it tells about how the Japanese people live and what the marriage ceremony would be like, about school sports, and about living there. It also tells what they eat. The book also tells what they do after a family member has died. My opinion is the book is outstanding because it is outstanding how they live and what they do everyday. I would recommend the book to kids ages 9-12 because it has a lot of reading and some big words, but the pictures are very nice and clear. I did like the book and so would someone who likes culture and learning about cultures.

M.K., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

How Do Chameleons Change Color?

Stewart, Melissa. How Do Chameleons Change Color?. 2009. Marshall Cavendish. ISBN: 9780761429227.

I don't like this book because there is too much blah. It tells you about a lot but not too many details about chameleons changing color. This book is for kids to look up chameleons. Ages 6-10 would enjoy.

D.J., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Mysteries of Alien Visitors and Abductions

Walker, Kathryn. Mysteries of Alien Visitors and Abductions. Crabtree Publishing: 2009. ISBN: 9780778741411.

I found this nonfiction book fascinating. It includes stories about real people's strange meetings. Most of these stories were told while under hypnosis. The glossary has clear definitions and the pictures were a great visual aide. I found this book fascinating because it has interesting facts and stories told by real people. The paintings and computer generated photos were a helpful visual on every page. People who enjoy science fiction or nonfiction would most likely like this book. I recommend this book to children in grades 3,4,5, and 6, because the concept might be harder to grasp for anyone younger.

L.W., 7th Grade, Eastwood Middle School

Martial Arts Legends

Gifford, Clive. Martial Arts Legends. Crabtree Publishing: 2009. ISBN: 9780778737766.

This book was fascinating! I enjoyed this nonfiction book because it gave many surprising facts. A large portion of these facts were about famous movie stars and Olympic fighters. It also gave a great timeline of the history of martial arts and pictures and examples of styles. I liked when this book talked about the masters of martial arts styles, still alive today. I recommend this book for ages 7-13 or for anyone who wants to find interesting facts about martial arts.

C.T., 7th Grade, Eastwood Middle School

How Weird Is It?

Hillman, Ben. How Big Is It?. 2009. Scholastic. ISBN: 9780439918688.

How Weird Is It? was a book about several different things like how Egyptians lived with their cats and how comets fell from the sky. There was a lot more weird stuff, but the rest I will let you discover. The kids that read this book would probably be 12-15 years old. I do not like the book, but that is my opinion. I do think that a lot of kids would like it around Halloween time because it's creepy.

A.G., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

That's Papa's Way

Banks, Kate. That's Papa's Way. Farrar, Straus & Giroux: 2009. ISBN: 9780374374457.

That's Papa's Way is an enticing fiction book. It is about a father and his daughter going on a fishing trip together. They both have different things that they like to do their own way. The painted pictures are full of detail and are very creative. This book shows the relationship between a young girl and her father; therefore I recommend this book to girls 4 to 8 years of age. This book was geared toward a younger audience, so it wasn't as appealing to me as it would be to a six year old girl. The only thing I would change is how much brown the pictures used.

V.S., 7th Grade, Eastwood Middle School

Dinothesaurus: Prehistoric Poems and Paintings

Florian, Douglas. Dinothesaurus: Prehistoric Poems and Paintings. 2009. Atheneum Books for Young Readers. ISBN: 9781416979784.

Dinothesaurus has poems about different dinos. My favorite is about the triceratops. It talks about how mean they are. My opinion is that I like this book so I think other people should read it. I recommend this book for ages 4 and up.

B.R., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Tony and the Pizza Champions

Gemignani, Tony. Tony and the Pizza Champions. illustrated by Matthew Trueman. 2009. Chronicle Books. ISBN: 9780811861625.

Tony and the Pizza Champions was about pizza champions and a bunch of teams to compete against. Every team was amazing in the championships. The medal was in the shape of a pizza but it was golden. This book was awesome to me mostly because I love pizza. It would be for anyone who loves pizza.

K.O., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Red Sings From Treetops: A Year in Colors

Sidman, Joyce. Red Sings From Treetops: A Year in Colors. illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski. 2009. Houghton Mifflin. ISBN: 9780547014944.

I liked the book because it was poetry about the colors of the different seasons. It showed pictures of nature outside. People who like poetry would like this book. Best for ages 6 and up.

S.G., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Unite or Die: How 13 States Became a Nation

Jules, Jacqueline. Unite or Die: How 13 States Became a Nation. illustrated by Jef Czekaj. 2009. Charlesbridge. ISBN: 978158089189.

Unite or Die is about how the 13 states became a nation. There were a lot of cartoons and it was not funny to me. I did not like the book because I don't like history. People who like history would like this book because it has a lot of history.

J.L., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Hamlet and the Tales of Sniggery Woods

Kneen, Maggie. Hamlet and the Tales of Sniggery Woods. 2009. Henry Holt and Co. ISBN: 9780805077018.

Hamlet and the Tales of Sniggery Woods is about a little pig that likes to cook. He wanted to be in cooking school. Hamlet's Uncle Alf left him a note. He said he's getting old and he can't run the cafe anymore.

R.G., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Amiri & Odette: A Love Story

Myers, Walter Dean. Amiri & Odette: A Love Story. illustrated by Javaka Steptoe. 2009. Scholastic Press. ISBN: 9780590680417.

Amiri likes to play basketball. He plays on an outdoor basketball court. The art is paintings. The paintings are sweet. The colors are mixed and they are good paintings. My opinion is that it is a good book because it shows how this family gets back together. They love each other. Kids ages 12-13 would like this book.

A.R., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Insect Eaters

Kalman, Bobbie. Insect Eaters. 2009. Crabtree Publishing. ISBN: 9780778732785.

Insect Eaters is a very informative book that tells you what type of animals eat insects. This book also tells more about the animal and their methods of obtaining their food. My favorite part was the echidnas page because I love echidnas. If I were doing a report on animals or plants that eat insects, this would be the first book I would go to. This book is great because I am an animal person and I enjoy learning more about them. I learned that echidnas are hatched from eggs. A strength of this book is that it's so informative. A weakness is that it's serious and hardly funny. I would recommend this book to people who enjoy animals, mostly between the ages of 9-13.

A.S., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Big George : How A Shy Boy Became President Washington

Rockwell, Anne. Big George : how a shy boy became President Washington. Illustrated by Matt Phelan. Harcourt: 2009. ISBN: 9780152165833.

Big George by Anne Rockwell was a very descriptive and interesting book. The artwork was very interesting and it went well with the text. The only problem I saw with the pictures was the eyes were to small for the faces. What I thought was interesting was how it described how he was never wounded in battle, and how well the pictures related to the text. I thought this book was very good for its reading level, because it gave lots of information about our first president. I thought one of the many strengths in this book was the "A note from the author" section. I got to learn even more from that section. I though one of its weaknesses was how it was about his childhood, because I thought his childhood was a little boring. I think kids that want to learn about George Washington, read a challenging book, or look at pictures would like this book. I would recommend this book to first and second graders.

B.T. 7th Grade. Eastwood Middle School.

Hansel and Gretel

Isadora, Rachel. Hansel and Gretel. G.P. Putnam's Sons: 2009. ISBN:9780399250286.

Hansel and Gretel by Rachel Isadora is a fiction book. The book is a great book, because it has good pictures. The pictures were detailed because they match the words in the story. First in the story Hansel and Gretel's stepmother hated them and their father and stepmother were fighting. When their parents went to sleep Hansel went outside to get pebbles, and then Hansel got yelled at by the stepmother. I liked the book, because it had awesome picture in it. They were decorated perfectly. I would recommend this book to anyone, because anyone could enjoy it. I would love to have this book on my shelf.

D.G. 7th Grade. Eastwood Middle School.

Mysteries of the Bermuda Triangle

Walker, Kathryn. Mysteries of the Bermuda Triangle. Illustrated by Stefan Chabluk. Crabtree: 2009. ISBN: 9780778741442.

Mysteries of the Bermuda Triangle is a nonfiction book that tells stories about ships and planes going missing. One of the stories I liked is about a group of U.S. Navy Avenger bombers vanishing without a trace. The author uses a lot of photographs to show what some of the stories talk about. There are many stories that have to do with boats that went missing in the Atlantic Ocean. Three islands make up a triangle known as the Bermuda Triangle. I think this book is good because of the stories they put in them give good descriptions and photos. This is good to read if you are between the ages of eight and twelve. I think that someone might like this book because of all the stories in it.

Z.H. 7th grade. Eastwood Middle School.

There's a Babirusa in My Bathtub.

Schur, Maxine Rose. There's a Babirusa in My Bathtub. Dawn Publications: 2009. ISBN: 9781584691174.

There's a Babirusa in My Bathtub is a nonfiction book about facts about all sorts of animals. On each page there is a different animal. On the page there is a poem about the animal and then next to it there is also two paragraphs describing the animal. Also on the page there is a fabulous fact about the creature. I really enjoyed the fabulous fact because it tells you facts that you may have not known. The artwork was amazing! The pictures looked like the actual animal.I really liked this book. I learned a lot of facts from it. I also learned about animals that I didn't know existed. I enjoyed almost every page, because you can learn from it. I would recommend this to sixth to eight graders, because it is interesting and a little hard to understand some words. Also to people who want to learn about animals.

A.B. 7th grade. Eastwood Middle School.

Solving the Mysteries of the Past

Aksomitis, Gerard. Solving the Mysteries of the Past. Crabtree: 2009. ISBN: 9780778741718.

Solving the Mysteries of the Past by Gerard Aksomitis is about archaeology. In this book there are a lot of facts about mummies.

C.S. 7th grade. Eastwood Middle School.

Keep On!

Hopkinson, Debrah. Keep On!. Peachtree Publishing: 2009. ISBN: 9781561454737.

Keep On! is a nonfiction story about Matthew Henson the co-discoverer of the North Pole. The art and illustrations are very realistic with the small white paint dots as snowflakes. The story talks about Matthew Henson wanting to explore places he never has seen before. Captain Childs was Matthew's teacher for a lot of years. After Captain Child's died Matthew wanted to go to the North Pole. My opinion about this book is that it is amazing. My favorite part was when Matthew was in the icy cold water. I though he wouldn't come out with all the movies I have seen. I would recommend this book to fourth and fifth graders, because it would inform them about the co-discoverer of the North Pole.

J.H., 7th grade, Eastwood Middle School

Wombat Walkabout

Shields, Carol Diggory. Wombat Walkabout. Dutton: 2009. ISBN: 9780525478052.

Wombat Walkabout by Carol Diggory Shields is a fiction book about six little wombats who go on a walk. When they are all walking the last one will stop and a Dingo will pick the wombat up and put them in a sack. He picks up all but two. The art work has laid-back light colors. I thought the pictures were really good and went along with the story. I liked the book, because it explains why you should stay in a group or with a partner. It was overall a good book and It would be good for a child ages six to twelve. I think all kids from ages six to twelve would like this book, because it is fun to read, but is also informational.
J.C. 7th grade. Eastwood Middle School.

What's Inside?

Laroche, Giles. What's Inside?. Houghton Mifflin: 2009. ISBN:9780618862474.

What's Inside? by Giles Laroche is a nonfiction book. It tells about buildings and their contents. This book takes you around the world from King Tut's tomb to an aquarium. At the end of the book it takes you back home into your bedroom. The illustrations are really lifelike. They are made of many layers of paper and many beautiful colors. I thought this book was boring. There was nothing interesting happening. I was bored that it was just facts. The only interesting part of the book was the end when the author showed the kids back in their house. I think this book would be for someone who was doing a research project on buildings. I would recommend this for ages eight to fourteen.

L.T. 7th grade. Eastwood Middle School.

Listen to the Wind

Mortenson, Greg. Listen to the Wind. illustrated by Susan Roth. 2009. Dial Books for Young Readers. ISBN: 9780803730588.

Listen to the Wind is about a man who helps build a school for poor children of the Korphe in a little village in Pakistan. They had to write and do their work.

T.M., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School


Kajikawa, Kimiko. Tsunami!. Philomel Books: 2009. ISBN:9780399250064.

Tsunami! by Kimiko Kajikawa is a fiction book about an old man named Ojiisan who is the oldest and wealthiest person in the village. As Ojiison watches the rice ceremony he feels something coming, but he cannot describe it. Then he sees it, the huge wave, Tsunami. Ojiison only has so much time to warn the villagers, and he needs to, fast. The picutres in the book were very bright, but they didn't really show what the text was about.I did like this book, because of the art. I liked this art, because the colors made me feel warm. I would recommend this to eight to thirteen year-olds. I would recommend this to that age group, because of the vibrant language.

L.F.,7th grade, Eastwood Middle School.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

What is Trade?

Andrews, Carolyn. What is Trade? Crabtree Publishing: 2009. ISBN: 9780778742586.

This nonfiction book clearly tells what trade is. It tells how trade first started up to present day. It uses photographs and computer generated maps. The book was educational and introduced new vocabulary. I liked the way the photographs went along with the text. I did not like the "fact stops" because I thought they were in the way. I liked the size of the pictures because they were big and bright. I liked the captions because they clearly stated what the photographs were. I think this book is good for anyone who wants to learn about trade, especially 9-14 year olds.

Z.R., 7th Grade, Eastwood Middle School

Bugs that Destroy

Jackson, Carl. Bugs that Destroy. Marshall Cavendish: 2009. ISBN: 9780761413886.

Bugs that Destory is a nonfiction, spectacular, and informative book meant for young scientists between the ages of 8-12. This book tells all about bugs, whether they live alone or are gregarious (a term you will learn in this story). It tells what bugs detroy, how they destroy it, and how to stop them. This book also has photographs magnified to the perfect size, and diagrams and illustrations that help the reader picture the bug while giving extra information.

A.Z., 7th Grade, Eastwood Middle School

Solving the Mysteries of Machu Picchu

Croy, Anita. Solving the Mysteries of Machu Picchu. Marshall Cavendish: 2009. ISBN: 9780761431039.

This nonfiction book was about the abandoned Incan city of Machu Picchu. The pictures in the book were amazing! The information in the book was interesting and attention grabbing! I thought it was very interesting that almost everyone had a different theory or idea that caused the Inca's to leave. I thought this book was very factual. I like action books, so this was a little different. I would recommend this book to people who are interested in Machu Picchu or history, or even someone who just wants to read a book.

N.R., 7th Grade, Eastwood Middle School

In Pericles's Athens with Socrates

Leoni, Christina. In Pericle's Athens with Socrates. Marshall Cavendish: 2009. ISBN: 9780761443261.

This is a nonfiction book about two kids in the present day who follow an owl into ancient Greece, where they meet Socrates. Then, Socrates takes them on a tour of Athens from the Acropolis, to the countryside, and everywhere else too! With pictures on every page, it will certainly give you an idea of where they were. There is also a table of contents, a map of ancient Athens, a biography of Socrates, a chronology of important events, an overview of the age of Pericles, a glossary, and an index with exciting new words in both Greek and English. I liked the book because it was a historical book and I like history, but that isn't the only reason. Another one is the many colorful pictures on the pages and all of the Greek words and meanings. The author really spent a lot of time researching about ancient Greece. I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to be a historian or wants to learn about Athens because that is what it is mostly about.

T.B., 7th Grade, Eastwood Middle School

A Picture Book of Harry Houdini

Adler, David A. and Michael S. A Picture Book of Harry Houdini. Holiday House: 2009. ISBN: 9780823420599.

This nonfiction book is pretty much a quick glance at Harry Houdini's life. It starts right into the action; it really catches your attention. It tells when he was born, it gives some of his most famous tricks and then goes to the day he dies. The pictures really help you imagine what has happened in his life. They make you feel like you are actually in the audience watching him perform. This book was good, overall. It had fascinating things about his life, but it didn't have much text and a kid my age could have written it. It is a great read for kids in first through fourth grade who like magicians and trickery. It is a good, short biography about Harry Houdini.

G.G., 7th Grade, Eastwood Middle School

Get Cooking

Stern, Sam. Get Cooking. 2009. Candlewick Press. ISBN: 9780763639266.

Get Cooking is about a teenage boy who is tremendous! All of the recipes are very, very detailed and the pictures are life-like. All of the recipes are very good looking! My opinion on this book is I wish I was the one who could taste the food. I would recommend this book for grades 6 through high school and beyond.

J.H., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Down, Down, Down: A Journey to the Bottom of the Sea

Jenkins, Steve. Down, Down, Down: A Journey to the Bottom of the Sea. 2009. Houghton Mifflin. ISBN: 9780618966363.

Down, Down, Down was about the bottom of the sea. It tells you about fish and their diet. I thought the book's pictures were colorful and big. The book talks about almost every fish in the sea. I thought it was cool. I thought the book was cool but I didn't like reading it because it talked a lot about the sea. I like more of the action books. I recommend this book to people who like fish and water. I think kids ages 6 to 10 would like this book because it's cool and has awesome pictures. This book is educational for this age group.

D.K., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Waste and Recycling

Hewitt, Sally. Waste and Recycling. 2009. Crabtree Publishing. ISBN: 9780778740988.

Waste and Recycling is a very good book. It is very informative. The photographs were very clear and life-like. I think this book is really amazing. I think it would help people who need help with a report on recycling. I learned a lot about waste and recycling. If you read it, you may like it! I recommend this to people who like learning about recycling and for ages 9-14.

S.S., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Sacred Mountain: Everest

Taylor-Butler, Christine. Sacred Mountain: Everest. 2009. Lee and Low Books. ISBN: 9781600602559.

I liked Sacred Mountain: Everest because it told about how indigenous people there lived and what their religion is. It tells about when a child is born. I recommend this book for people who like to climb mountains.

M.T., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School


Peppas, Lynn. Easter. 2009. Crabtree Publishing. ISBN: 9780778742890.

Easter is about a holiday when people worship God. At Easter you color eggs and tell about the resurrection of Jesus. Easter is a great holiday to get together with your family and tell stories and color eggs with each other. The picture with the two little girls sitting next to each other and reading the Bible is very touching because it shows me they really care about special holidays. I loved the book because it gives a lot of detail about the holiday. It told me a lot I didn't know about the holiday. I thought it was very interesting. I would recommend this book to kids 6-12 years old.

M.D., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Pharaoh's Boat

Weitzman, David. Pharaoh's Boat. 2009. Houghton Mifflin. ISBN: 9780547053417.

Pharaoh's Boat is a good book and has great information about Egyptian boats. The art work is amazing. It was like I was really in Egypt. My opinion is that this book is a good source on Egyptian boats. I recommend this book to people doing projects about a Pharaoh's boat or who want to write a report on one.

N.C., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

When it's Six O'Clock in San Francisco: A Trip Through Time Zones

Omololu, Chnthia Jones. When It's Six O'Clock in San Francisco: a Trip Through Time Zones. illustrated by Randy Duburke. 2009. Clarion Books. ISBN: 9780618768271.

This book is about different time zones. It tells when it's six o'clock in San Francisco it's a different time in other places. I like the book because it was cool how they showed all the different time zones. Recommended for kids 12+.

A.M., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Shining Star

Yoo, Paula. Shining Star: the Anna May Wong Story. illustrated by Lin Wang. 2009. Lee & Low Books. ISBN: 9781600602597.

This story is mainly about a Chinese girl who comes to America and becomes a star. Her dad didn't want her to. Then someone was looking for someone to be in a movie and Anna, the girl, told her dad that they would get money if she did it. Then her dad let her. I liked this book because it's about an actress and I want to become an actress when I grow up. It was interesting and fun to read. My favorite page was probably the first page when she's about to get hit by a train. The people who would most enjoy this story is someone who wants to be an actress or actor. There's no age group in my opinion.

S.I., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Amazing Tricks: Expert Level

Barnhart, Norm. Amazing Tricks: Expert Level. Capstone Press: 2009. ISBN: 9781429619455.

This nonfiction book is all about magic tricks, from multiplying coins to pulling a sock out of a hat. It explains ways to warm up the audience and tricks to keep them captivated. Amazing Tricks: Expert Level includes information about the author, internet resources and 10 tricks.
I loved this book! Even though it says "Expert Level" the tricks are simple with amazing results, thanks to the excellent directions and wonderful pictures. With the help of this book anyone could become an extraordinary magician. This book is the perfect book for anyone of any age who is interested in becoming a magician. The directions are easy to follow and the pictures are entertaining and reinforce the words at the same time.

A.D., 7th Grade, Eastwood Middle School

Marching to Appomattox

Stark, Ken. Marching to Appomattox. G.P. Putnam and Sons: 2009. ISBN: 9780399242120.

This nonfiction book was about the race to end the Civil War between Lee and Grant. It tells about the fighting, the soldiers, and the last battles in the war. The book describes how they fought and what the soldiers were going through in the war. Along with the text, there were very nice paintings that show what the text is saying. I really liked this book because I like learning about the Civil War. I liked it because it had good paintings and did a very good job of telling what happened. At the front of the book, it gave a map that helped show where the battles happened and where the soldiers were. It also gives the dates when things happened, which was nice.
I would recommend this book to kids who like history or kids who want to know more about the end of the Civil War.

D.H., 7th Grade, Eastwood Middle School

In Caesar's Rome with Cicero

Leoni, Christina. In Caesar's Rome with Cicero. Marshall Cavendish: 2009. ISBN: 9780761443285.

This fictional book is an interesting story about two siblings, brother and sister, that take a family vacation to Rome. Little did they know that it would be one they would never forget. While sightseeing, the two find a strange man dresssed in white draping clothes. When they take a second look at him, they find themselves in ancient Rome! The man, Cicero, is kind and shows them all of Rome; more than they ever imagined they would see! This book is full of facts and gives the reader a look into history. This fascinating book is a fun and exciting way to learn more about ancient Rome and the way of life back then. The storyline kept me interested in the book instead of just naming fact after fact. I also enjoyed the illustrating very much because they show the reader what life would have looked like back then.

A.S., 7th Grade, Eastwood Middle School

Comic Books and Manga

Robson, Eddie. Comic Books and Manga. Crabtree Publishing Company: 2009. ISBN: 9780778738138.

Eddie Robson tells about comic books and how they got started in this non-fiction book. He included pictures of comics, comic and manga characters, people with a lot of comics and people with their favorite comics. He told about sketches and how comics are created. It also told why manga is backwards. I don't read comics very often and Manga comics are hard for me to understand because they are backwards. Thanks to Mr. Robson, now I understand Manga a little better and I know why it is backwards. I really enjoyed this book because it showed pictures of people enjoying comics and old time comics. It also showed comics closer to the present day. I recommend this book to comic book readers, lovers and fans of all ages.

H.L., 7th Grade, Eastwood Middle School

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The Daring Miss Quimby

Whitaker, Suzanne. The Daring Miss Quimby. illustrated by Catherine Stock. 2009. Holiday House. ISBN: 9780823419968.

The Daring Miss Quimby is extremely daring and exciting. She learns how to fly even though everyone says it's too dangerous. I think that it's a fantastic book. It has larger words for ages 7 and up and it would be for someone who likes history and adventure.

K.M., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Chinese New Year

Gleason, Carrie. Chinese New Year. 2009. Crabtree Publishing. ISBN: 9780778742807.

Chinese New Year is about the New Year holiday in China. They hang up pictures for gods. One of their gods is god of the kitchen.

A.W., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School


Otfinoski, Steven. Skunks. 2009. Marshall Cavendish. ISBN: 9780761429296.

Skunks is about skunks and how they live and get food. It has information about how they survive. The pictures were amazing in their quality. I liked this book because I really learned a lot about skunks and how they live. I recommend this book to ages 5-10.

S. H., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School


McGinty, Alice. Darwin. illustrated by Mary Azarian. 2009. New York: Houghton Mifflin. ISBN: 9780618995318.

Darwin was about the scientist named Charles Darwin. The author talked all about Darwin's life and what and how he discovered what he discovered. The pictures in the book were cartoon-like and the colors all just blended with each other. The pictures also went along with the words. My opinion of the book is that it was very educational.

J.W., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Bugs That Live On Us

Perritano, John. Bugs That Live On Us. 2009. Marshall Cavendish. ISBN: 9780761431879

Bugs That Live On Us is about many unusual bugs such as the mighty mite, fleas, itch mites, head lice, threadworms, tapeworms, bed bugs, and dust mites. I really liked this book because it helps people realize that those unexplained bites when they wake up are from bed bugs. It is also a very interesting book because I learned about so many new bugs. Another reason it is a great book is because of the descriptions of how you get the bugs on you. I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in bugs or anyone who wants to learn about some new bugs.

J.M., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Monday, October 12, 2009

The Day-Glo Brothers

Barton, Chris. The Day-Glo Brothers. illustrated by Tony Persiani. 2009. Charlesbridge. ISBN: 9781570916731.

The Day-Glo Brothers is a really cool book and talks about paint and science. This book is about two boys trying to get new colors that glow in day and dark back when they didn't have fluorescent colors. Then the boys finally get a color started but not an eye-popping cool color. They wanted to take the color and make it in a window but they found out that the sun faded the color. My opinion about this book is that it is boring. This story gave me a headache from all of the black and white. If there were more colors that would be fine. I recommend this book to kids ages 7 and up.

T.G., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School


Esbaum, Jill. Stanza. illustrated by Jack Davis. 2009. Harcourt Children's Books. ISBN: 9780152059989.

Stanza is a book about a dog and his 2 brothers. During the day, they are the worst people on the streets. But Stanza has a secret. I did not like the book because it was too young for me to read. But it had fabulous pictures and teaches you a life lesson. It would be a fantastic book for 6-10 year old kids. I would recommend it for that age of kids.

J.G., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Ellis Island: Coming to the Land of Liberty

Bial, Raymond. Ellis Island: Coming to the Land of Liberty. 2009. Houghton Mifflin. ISBN: 9780618999439

This book is about Ellis Island during the early and mid-20th century when immigrants came from all over Europe, Asia, and Africa, and of course, it's a non-fiction book. I think kids ages 10-13 should read this book.

M.B., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

You Are Weird: Your Body's Peculiar Parts and Funny Functions

Swanson, Diane. You Are Weird: Your Body's Peculiar Parts and Funny Functions. Illustrated by Kathy Bloake. 2009. Kids Can Press. ISBN: 9781554532827

You are Weird is about our body and is chock full of weird information about it. The author combined science with humor! The artwork is exaggerated cartoon drawings. The people the illustrator drew had big eyes and some had twisted heads. There were also a bunch of happy colors like blues, reds, and yellows. I loved this book because it was full of crazy things about our body that I never knew. I love things like that. I would recommend this book for people in grades 6-8 and for people who love or like science.

M.P. 7th grader, Eastwood Middles School

Cool Biological Clues: What Hair, Bones, and Bugs Tell Us

Beck, Esther. Cool Biological Clues: What Hair, Bones, and Bugs Tell Us. 2009. ABDO Publishing. ISBN: 9781604534832.

Cool Biological Clues is non-fiction. It's about investigations kids can do. The photographs are real life and they show bugs, bones, and hair either with a magnifying glass or without one . The part about the fruit flies and the banana was rather awesome because it was amazing how many fruit flies can be attracted to the rotting fruit. That is why I thought this book was fantastic. I recommend this book for younger kids who like scientific experiments because it's what this book is basically about. I liked this book because I like science and biology. Although it was exciting in many parts of this book, it was also boring in some parts.

H.D., 7th grader, Eastwood Middle School

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Punctuation Celebration

Bruno, Elsa Knight. Punctuation Celebration. Illustrated by Jenny Whitehead. Henry Holt: 2009. ISBN: 9780805079739.

Punctuation Celebration by Elsa Knight Bruno is a fiction book about how to find the right punctuation. The artwork is hilarious, cute , and great. The pictures are bright, colorful, and go with the writing. In the writing there are rhymes that are great to enjoy while learning about punctuation. This book made learning punctuation fun. I liked Punctuation Celebration because even though I already knew about punctuation I enjoyed the pictures and imagining punctuation coming to life. I loved the scene with the colon and the kid was emptying out his jeans and all different things come out because we all do that and find things we don't expect. I think Punctuation Celebration is a great book for younger children. It is great for them to learn punctuation in a fun and silly way.

P.H., 7th grade, Eastwood Middle School.