Best Books of 2012
Here are some of my favorite novels for children from the past year. There are a lot more books from 2012 still in my “to read” pile. If you are on Pinterest, an excellent source of more “Best of” book lists can be found here.
Liar and Spy by Rebecca Stead
Seventh-grader Georges adjusts to moving from a house to an apartment, his father's efforts to start a new business, his mother's extra shifts as a nurse, being picked on at school, and in the middle of all these changes, he becomes involved in a Spy Club with a mysterious boy named Safer from his building.
Wonder by R. J. Palacio
Ten-year-old Auggie Pullman, who was born with extreme facial abnormalities and not expected to survive, goes from being home-schooled to entering fifth grade at a private middle school in Manhattan, which entails enduring the taunting and fear of his classmates as he struggles to be seen as just another student. Much Newbery buzz around this title.
Chained by Lynne Kelly
To work off a family debt, ten-year-old Hastin leaves his desert village in India to work as a circus elephant keeper but many challenges await him, including trying to keep Nandita, a sweet elephant, safe from the cruel circus owner. A good book about friendship and overcoming obstacles.
Starry River of the Sky by Grace Lin
A young boy runs away from his mean father and becomes a chore boy at a distant inn, and discovers that a visitor's stories hold the key to returning the missing moon to the Starry River of the Sky. A lovely companion to Where the Mountain Meets the Moon.
A Diamond in the Desert by Kathryn Fitzmaurice
After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, thirteen-year-old Tetsu and his family are sent to the Gila River Relocation Center in Arizona where a fellow prisoner starts a baseball team, but when Tetsu's sister becomes ill and he feels responsible, he stops playing.
Mighty Miss Malone by Chistopher Paul Curtis
With love and determination befitting the "world's greatest family," twelve-year-old Deza Malone, her older brother Jimmie, and their parents endure tough times in Gary, Indiana, and later Flint, Michigan, during the Great Depression.
DeAnn O. never seems to have enough time to read.