The Christian Science Monitor Weekly

November 26, 2018

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BOOKS BOOKS CHILDREN'S By Elena Weissmann When a boy visits his grandfather, they struggle to connect in Minh Le's book Drawn Together, illustrated by Dan Santat. But they discover a shared love for making art. As they draw dragons and warriors, wizards and wands, their images take life, ig- niting a bond between the pair that transcends language. Illustrated with a level of detail that makes the images pop off the page, this sweet tale reminds us that all hu- mans can connect, regardless of background, so long as we open our hearts and our minds. Earthrise, by James Gladstone and illustrated by Christy Lundy, shows that 1968 was a year of unrest. Mean - while, the Apollo 8 crew was about to go farther into space than anyone had gone before – to the moon! This book describes their journey from Earth to the unexplored circle of Swiss cheese in the sky, reminding children to re- main in awe of our planet as well as what we have accomplished. In Dreamers, written and illustrated by Yuyi Morales, a mother and her infant son find their new home in America. At first there are plenty of barriers to overcome. But then the pair stumble upon a library, and it becomes the perfect place "to speak, to write, and to make our voices heard." The multime - dia illustrations by the author are gorgeous, and Morales's wonder rings clear throughout the story. In The Sloth Who Slowed Us Down, by Margaret Wild and illustrated by Vivi - enne To, Amy has the fastest family in the world. But one day, Amy brings home a sloth she found in the park, and everything slooooows down. With Sloth around, the family learns to ap- preciate the little things: talking to the neighbors, knitting hats, and even ad- miring the moon. The author keeps the tone goofy and light, and her story reminds us what can be lost when we By Augusta Scattergood These terrific new middle-grade novels from award-winning writers have arrived just in time for holiday shopping, school reporting, and family sharing on a cozy fall weekend. Louie, protagonist of Saving Winslow, by Sharon Creech, has attempted to save creatures before. Now the boy refuses to give up on a sickly miniature donkey named Winslow. His wor- ries about the animal parallel the family's concerns about Louie's brother, deployed overseas in the Army. A lovely friendship story of determination and courage, "Sav - ing Winslow" is short enough for a newly independent reader to tackle and perfect for reading aloud. Newbery Medal winner Creech's delightful new novel is destined to become a classic. Louisiana Elefante first appeared in Kate DiCamillo's award-winning "Raymie Night- ingale." Now she's back in a beautifully told, magical story of her own with Louisiana's Way Home. When Louisiana's eccentric grand- mother rouses her from a deep sleep and hustles her away from Florida with little expla - nation, their get- away takes them from zany missteps to a lovely friendship with a boy who lives near their motel. In this small gem, DiCamillo smartly weaves life lessons into a funny, charming novel that will delight both new readers and loyal fans. Merci Suárez, protagonist of Merci Suárez Changes Gears, by Meg Medi- na, spends school days trying to fit in at the prestigious Sea- ward Pines Academy, where she and her brainy brother are scholarship students. Merci becomes a Sunshine Buddy to a cute boy new to Seaward Pines. When the queen bee of the popular girls tries to impress him, things can't go well for Merci. The Cuban food, the Latino culture, the love tinged with embarrassment typical of many preteens make this novel perfect for discussion and for reading together with a friend, a teacher, or a family member. Life isn't going well for Amy Silverman, protagonist of In Your Shoes, Donna Gephart's latest middle-grade novel. After her mother's death, she moved to AGES 9-12 AGES 2-8 Love, connection in children's titles NEW BOOKS FOCUS ON UNITY PROTAGONISTS WITH VERVE, STORIES THAT ENGAGE ILLUSTRATION BY DAN SANTAT ILLUSTRATION BY YUYI MORALES 34 THE CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR WEEKLY | NOVEMBER 26, 2018

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