Book Reviews by Genre & Topic

The book reviews are separated by picture book, chapter book, and general adult books. The children’s books are categorized alphabetically by topic. A general age frame and additional information is provided. For more book information, click on the highlighted title. Please leave a comment for suggestions to make this page even more helpful. 

Picture Books

Al Pha’s Bet by Amy Krouse Rosenthal Ages4+, Humorous as the alphabet letters have personalities.
Eating the Alphabet by Lois Ehlert -Ages 1+ Learn the alphabet and healthy fruits & vegetables
LMNO Peas by Keith Baker – Ages 3+
Back to School: 
Butterflies in My Stomach by Serge Bloch – A nervous child is confused with daily idioms on the first day. – Ages 4-8. 
Snowflake Bentley by Jacqueline Briggs Martin -Ages 8+
The Boy on Fairfield Street: How Ted Geisel Grew Up to Become Dr. Seuss by Kathleen Krull – Ages 8+
Pop the Invention of Bubble Gum by Meghan McCarthy – Ages 6+, True story about Walter Diemer who helped create bubble gum. – Ages 6+
Eva and Little Kitty on the Titanic by Sidsel Carnahan – Ages 6+, Story about one of the last surviving Titanic survivors as a young girl on the ship. There is a fictional element too. 
Cupcake by Charise Mericle Harper – Ages 5+ A cute story about a plain cupcake who wants to be special. 
Every Year On Your Birthday by Rose Lewis – Ages 6+
Happy Birthday Monster by Scott Beck – Ages 6+
Happy Birthday to You! by Dr. Seuss – Ages 6+
On the Night You Were Born by Nancy Tillman – Ages 3+
Scaredy Squirrel Has a Birthday Party by Mélanie Watt – Ages 6+
The Best Birthday Party Ever by Jennifer LaRue Huget – Ages 6-8
The Secret Birthday Message by Eric Carle – Ages 3-5
Bullying & Teasing:
Just Kidding by Trudy Ludwig – Ages 6-8
King of the playground by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor – Ages 5-7
Say Something by Peggy Moss – Ages 6-8
Stand Tall Molly Lou Melon by Patty Lovell – Ages 5-7
The Recess Queen by Alexis O’Neil – Ages 5-7
Yoon and the Jade Bracelet by Helen Recorvits – Ages 6-9
Chinese New Year:
Runaway Wok: A Chinese New Year by Ying Chang Compestine – Ages 6-8, Humorous
A Bellbird in a Flame Tree by Kilmeny Niland – Australian version of The Twelve Days of Christmas – Ages 4-6
A Wish to be a Christmas Tree by Colleen Monroe – Ages 6-8
Christmas Cookies Bite Size Holiday Lessons by Amy Krouse Rosenthal -Ages 4-6
Feliz Navidad by David Diaz – Ages 5-8
How Santa Got His Job by Stephen Krensky – Ages 6-8
How Santa Lost His Job by Stephen Krensky – Ages 6-8
Light the Lights a Story About Celebrating Hanukkah Christmas by Margaret Moorman – Ages 6-8
Milly and the Macy’s Parade by Shana Corey – Ages 8-10
Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree  by Robert Barry -Ages 6-8
The Baker’s Dozen a Saint Nicholas Tale by Aaron Shepard – Ages 8-10
Three French Hens by Margie Palatini – Ages 7-9
Cinco de Mayo:
Cinco de Mouse-o! by Judy Cox – A humorous story about a mouse on Cinco de Mayo. – Ages 5-8 
Green by Laura Vaccaro Seeger Ages 2+
Uncle Peter’s Amazing Chinese Wedding – Ages 6-9
My Name is Yoon  by Helen Recorvits –  Girl tries to fit into class with her name. – Ages 6-9
Yoon and the Jade Bracelet by Helen Recorvits – Bullying & Friendship – Ages 6-9
The Curious Garden by Peter Brown Ages 6+, A garden changes a city to make it beautiful.
The Earth Book  by Todd Parr – Helpful hints to take care of the Earth. – Ages 4-6 
Chopsticks by Amy Krouse Rosenthal – Chopsticks learn to work together and apart. – Ages 4-7
Enemy Pie by Derek Munson – Ages 5-7
Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett – Ages 5+
How Orples Came to Be by Marcy Cockerille King – Fantasy story about oranges that become alive. – Ages 6-8
Tara & Bella: The Elephant and Dog Who Became Best Friends  by Carol Buckley – Ages 6+
A Chanukah Noel by Sharon Jennings -Ages 8-10
Hanukkah Moon by Deborah da Costa -Ages 7-9
Mrs Greenberg’s Messy Hanukkah by Linda Glaser -Ages 6-8
The Latke Who Couldn’t Stop Screaming by Lemony Snicket -Ages 6-10
Historic Events: 
Eva and Little Kitty on the Titanic by Sidsel Carnahan – Ages 6+, Somewhat true story about a girl on the Titanic. 
Amelia Bedelia, Bookworm by Herman Parish -Ages 5-7
Doug Unplugged by Dan Yaccarino Ages 5+
Open Very Carefully by Nick Bromley – Ages 5+, A crocodile is loose in the pages.
Rain! by Linda Ashman
There was a Cold Lady Who Swallowed Some Snow  by Lucille Colandro -Ages 5-7
The Teacher from the Black Lagoon by Mike Thale -Ages 5-7
The Frog Prince Continued by Jon Scieszka – Ages 6+
The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs!  by  Jon  Scieszka – Ages 6+
The Wind Blew by Pat Hutchins Ages 3+
The  Greedy Triangle by Marilyn Burns -Ages 5-7
Mother’s Day:
A Present for Mom by Vivian French – Ages 4-6
T-Rex and the Mother’s Day Hug by Lois G. Grambling – Ages 5-7
Morals & Lessons:
My Mouth is a Volcano by Julia Cook -Take Turns Talking – Ages 5-7
The Honest-to-Goodness Truth by Patricia C. McKissack -Ages 6-9
Spork by Kyo Maclear – A table spork feels different and wants to be included at the table. -Ages 4-6
An Orange in January by Dianna Hutts Aston -Explains how oranges arrive to the store in January. -Ages 4-6
Pig on the Titanic by Gary Crew – True story about woman’s musical box shaped like a pig on the Titanic. – Ages 7+
Polar the Titanic Bear by Daisy Corning Stone Spedden – True story told from the bear’s perspective with real photographs. – Ages 7+
Pop the Invention of Bubble Gum by Meghan McCarthy – Ages 6+, True story about how bubble gum was made. 
Safari Book/ Ages 2+, Awesome Photicular Book where the pictures came ‘alive’. by Dan Kainen and Carol Kaufmann 
Apple Pie 4th of July by Janet S. Wong Ages 5+, Chinese American girl conflicted how to celebrate 4th of July.
I Pledge Allegiance by Bill Martin Jr. and Michael Sampson 5+, Brief information about the Pledge of Allegiance.
I Haiku You by Betsy Snyder, Ages 6+ An introduction to haiku poems for children.
Please Bury Me in the Library by J. Patrick Lewis – Ages 6+
Wonderful Words: Poems About Reading, Writing, Speaking, and Listening edited by  Lee Bennett Hopkins -Ages 6+
Calico Cat Meets Bookworm by Donald Charles – Ages 4-6
Dog Loves Books by Louise Yates – A dog opens a bookstore. -Ages 4-6
I Don’t Like to Read! by Nancy Carlson -Ages 4-6
Library Lil by Suzanne Williams -Ages 6-8
Library Lion by Michelle Knudsen – Realistic elements about a friendly lion who enjoys the library. -Ages 5-7
Lola at the Library by Anna McQuinn – Ages 2-4 – Young girl enjoys the library.
Miss Brooks Loves Books (and I don’t) by Barbara Bottner – Ages 5+, A stubborn reader can’t find a book to enjoy.
Miss Dorothy and Her Bookmobile by Gloria Houston – Ages 6+
My Librarian is a Camel by Margriet Ruurs – Nonfiction about different book programs around the world. – Ages 8+
Reading Makes You Feel Good by Todd Parr – Ages 4+
Tomás and the Library Lady by Pat Mora – Migrant workers, Nonfiction, Library – Ages 6+
Wild About Books by Judy Sierra – Zoo animals love reading. – Ages 6+
The Story of Snow: The Science of Winter’s Wonder by Mark Cassino -Ages 8+
Fletcher and the Falling Leaves by Julia Rawlinson – Ages 4-6
In November by Cynthia Rylant -Ages 5-7
It’s Spring! by Linda Glaser Ages 4+
Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert – Ages 3-6 
Snow by by Cynthia Rylant – Ages 5-7
Snow  by by Uri Shulevitz – A young boy believes that it will snow, but the town doubts him. – Ages 5-7
Winter is the Warmest Season by Lauren Stringer – Ages 5-7
September 11th books:
Dog Heroes of September 11th: A Tribute to America’s Search and Rescue Dogs by Nona Kilgore Bauer
Fireboat: The Heroic Adventures of the John J. Harvey by Maira Kalman – Ages 7+
September 12th: We Knew Everything Would Be All Right by Materson Elementary Students in Kennett, Missouri – 5+ 
September Roses  by Jeanette Winter – Ages 5 +
The Little Chapel that Stood by A.B. Curtiss – Ages 8+
A Plump and Perky Turkey by Teresa Bateman -Ages 6-8
Gracias the Thanksgiving Turkey by Joy Cowley – Ages 5-7
I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie by Alison Jackson -Ages 5-7
The Woman Who Saved Thanksgiving by Laurie Halse Anderson – Nonfiction book about Sarah Hale who wrote to presidents to promote Thanksgiving as a national holiday during the 1800s. -Ages 8+
Thanksgiving Rules by Laurie Friedman – Ages 6-8
Turk and Runt: A Thanksgiving Comedy by Lisa Wheeler -Ages 5-7
Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving by Dav Pilkey -Ages 5-7
Valentine’s Day:
If You’ll Be My Valentine by Cynthia Rylant – Ages 4-6
Love, Ruby Valentine by Laurie Friedman – Ages 6+
Love, Splat by Rob Scotton – Ages 6+
Mouse’s First Valentine by Lauren Thompson – Ages 3-5
Rhyme Time Valentine by Nancy Poydar – Ages 6-8
Vocabulary/Word Fun:
Butterflies in My Stomach by Serge Bloch – A child is confused with daily idioms. – Ages 4-8. 
Fancy Nancy’s Favorite Fancy Words by Jane O’Connor – Ages 5-7
Max’s Words by Kate Banks – A young boy collects words. Ages 6+
Miss Alaineus by Debra Frasier – Word Confusion, Realistic Fiction, Ages 8+
Nouns and Verbs Have a Field Day by Robin Pulver – Fantasy, Learn Grammar -Ages 7-9
The Boy Who Loved Words by Roni Schotter – Ages 8+
Word Wizard by Cathryn Falwell – Fantasy Elements, Anagram -Ages 6-8
Flotsam by David Wiesner – 6+, Beach
Free Fall by David Wiesner, 6+ – Dreams, Imaginations 
Journey by Aaron Becker  Ages 7+, Journey with imagination
Mirror by Jeannie Baker, Ages 7+, Two cultures explore similarities in differences. 
Museum Trip by Barbara Lehman 4+, Museum, Mazes
Sector 7 by David Wiesner – Ages 7+, Clouds, Imagination
Wave by Suzy Lee -Ages 3+, beach
Where’s Walrus?  by Stephen Savage – Ages 3+, Walrus escapes zoo and hides in city.
Zoom by Istvan Banyai – Ages 4+, Book ‘zooms out’ to show more of the picture.

Chapter Books

Ages 5 – 7
Arthur and the Scare-Your-Pants-Off Club by Marc Brown – Realistic Fiction, Censorship 
Marty McGuire by Kate Messner – Realistic Fiction, School Situations 
Ages 8 – 10
Because of Mr. Terupt by Rob Buyea -School, Peer Relations, Realistic Fiction
Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator by Roald Dahl – Fantasy  
Dumpling Days by Grace Lin – Realistic Fiction, Cultural, Taiwan, Family 
James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl – Fantasy 
Mary Poppins by P. L Travers – Realistic Fiction, Fantasy
Matilda by Roald Dahl – Realistic Fiction 
Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Richard and Florence Atwater – Fantasy 
Regarding the Fountain by Kate Klise – Realistic Fiction, Graphic Book, Letters, Humorous
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark collected by Alvin Schwartz 
Summer of the Woods by Steven Smith – Adventure, Mystery
The Lemonade War by Jacqueline Davies – Realistic Fiction, Siblings, Economics 
Titanic: Unsinkable by Gordon  Korman – Realistic Fiction, Historical Fiction 
Tua and the Elephant by R. P. Harris – Animal Rescue, Cultural 
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis – Fantasy
The Twits by Roald Dahl – Fantasy, Humorous 
The BFG by Roald Dahl – Fantasy, Humorous
The Fingertips of Duncan Dorfman by Meg Wolitzer – Realistic Fiction, Friendship, Middle School, Scrabble Competition
The Landry News by Andrew Clements – Realistic Fiction, Censorship, Class Newspaper
The Library Card by Jerry Spinelli – Realistic Fiction 
The Story of Treasure Seekers by Edith Nesbit – Realistic Fiction, Adventure
The Trumpet of the Swan by E.B. White -Animals, Friendship, Being Different
The Witches by Roald Dahl – Fantasy, Humorous 
Touch Blue by Cynthia Lord – Realistic Fiction, Foster care, Island life 
Wonderstruck by Brian Selznick – Graphic Novel, Mystery, Realistic Fiction 
The 39 Clues series – Adventure, Mystery
Ages 10+
Among the Hidden (#1) by Margaret Peterson Haddix – Science Fiction, Adventure, Dystopia
Among the Impostors (#2) by Margaret Peterson Haddix – Science Fiction, Dystopia, Adventure
Among the Betrayed (#3) by Margaret Peterson Haddix – Science Fiction, Dystopia, Adventure
Among the Barons (#4) by Margaret Peterson Haddix – Science Fiction, Dystopia, Adventure
Among the Brave (#5) by Margaret Peterson Haddix – Science Fiction, Dystopia, Adventure
Among the Enemy (#6) by Margaret Peterson Haddix – Science Fiction, Dystopia, Adventure
Among the Free (#7) by Margaret Peterson Haddix – Science Fiction, Dystopia, Adventure
Cat Found by Ingrid Lee – Realistic Fiction, Animal Abuse 
Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos – Realistic Fiction, Humorous, 1960s
Eggs by Jerry Spinelli – Death, Friendship, Dysfunctional Families 
Flipped by Wendlin Van Draanen – Realistic Fiction, Coming-of-Age, Young Love
Hatchet by Gary Paulsen – Survival, Adventure
Holes by Louis Sachar – Realistic Fiction 
Hoot by Carl Hiaasen – Realistic Fiction, Mystery 
Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli – Realistic Fiction, Racism, Homelessness 
Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine – Realistic Fiction, Asperger’s syndrome, Death
Rules by Cynthia Lord – Realistic Fiction, Coming-of-Age, Autism
Scat by Carl Hiaasen – Realistic Fiction, Mystery, Endangered Species 
The Candle Star by Michelle Isenhoff – Realistic Fiction, Slavery, Pre-Civil War 
The Giver by Lois Lowry – Science Fiction, Dystopia
The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster – Fantasy 
Young Adult (Ages 15+)
Places I Never Meant to Be: Original Stories by Censored Writers edited by Judy Blume – Short Stories 
Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli – Realistic Fiction, Young Love, Individuality
Tangerine by Edward Bloor – Realistic Fiction, Sports
The Day They Came to Arrest the Book by Nat Hentoff – Realistic Fiction, Censorship
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins 
The Sledding Hill by Chris Crutcher – Realistic Fiction, Censorship, Death 

Adult Literature:

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott 
The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
Th Christmas List by Richard Paul Evans
A Dog’s Journey by W. Bruce Cameron
A Dog’s Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith 
Brooklyn by Colm Tóibín
Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok
Gold by  Chris Cleave
Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford
Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand by Helen Simonson
Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend by Matthew Dicks
Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Tell the Wolves I’m Home by Carol Rifka Brunt
The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling
The Chaperone by Laura Moriarty
The Christmas Wish by Richard Siddoway
The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman
The Story of Beautiful Girl  by Rachel Simon
The Tiger’s Wife by Téa Obreht
Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
Historical Fiction:
13, rue Therese by Elena Mauli Shapiro
Clara and Mr. Tiffany by Susan Vreeland 
Dreams of Joy by Lisa See
Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford 
How to Be an American Housewife by Margaret Dilloway
Sarah’s Key by Tatiana de Rosnay
The Autobiography of Mrs Tom Thumb by Melanie Benjamin
The Blind Contessa’s New Machine by Carey Wallace
The Chaperone by Laura Moriarty
The Dry Grass of August by Anna Jean Mayhew
13, rue Therese by Elena Mauli Shapiro
Mr. Penumbra’ s 24 Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan
The Shadow of the Wind by  Carlos Ruiz Zafón
102 Minutes: The Untold Story of the Fight to Survive Inside the Twin Towers by Jim Dwyer and Kevin Flynn
The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Creating Currents of Electricity and Hope by William Kamkwamba and Brian Mealer – African boy creates electricity with a windmill. 
Devil in the White City by Erik Larson – Chicago’s World Fair, serial killer
Eighty Days: Nellie Bly and Elizabeth Bisland’s History Making Race Around the World by Matthew Goodman
Photicular Safari Book The animals seem to come ‘alive’ off the pages. by Dan Kainen and Carol Kaufmann 
Thunder Dog: A Blind Man, His Guide Dog, and the Triumph of Trust at Ground Zero by Michael Hingson and Susy Flory 
Reading Information:
A Family of Readers: The Book Lover’s Guide to Children’s and Young Adult Literature by Roger Sutton and Martha V. Parravano
13, rue Therese by Elena Mauli Shapiro
The Art of Hearing Heartbeats by Jan Philipp-Sendker
The Last Letter from Your Lover by Jojo Moyes
Science Fiction:
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury


2 thoughts on “Book Reviews by Genre & Topic

    Kemi said:
    March 31, 2012 at 4:29 pm

    My 6-year old son and I are writing a book. This here is great inspiration! K

      Caroline responded:
      March 31, 2012 at 4:32 pm

      Oh that’s exciting! What’s the book about?

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