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The Night Before Christmas

Christmas Eve is almost here, and so what better time to read that famous poem by Clemente Clark Moore, "The Night Before Christmas."  The library has many different books based on this poem which was first published in a newspaper in 1823.  There is 'Twas the Night B'fore Christmas, an African-American version of the poem.  There is Gullah Night Before Christmas, told in the Gullah dialect of South Carolina and Georgia.  If you're in the mood for something a little scary, perhaps you should try The Night Before Christmas: A Goblin Tale.  There is The Night Before Christmas: Told in Signed English and even a version by the creator of the I Spy books called Can You See What I See? The Night Before Christmas.  The Grandma Moses Night Before Christmas illustrates the familiar narrative with stnick.jpgpaintings by the famous folk artist.  There are also many other traditional versions by various illustrators, including Tomie dePaola, Tasha Tudor, James Marshall, Mary Engelbreit, Lisbeth Zwerger, and others. Why not create a new family tradition by gathering the family together on the "night before Christmas" and reading aloud this well-loved poem?  As you can see, there are many versions to choose from at the Olathe libraries.  Happy holidays to all!

New Girl in Town

meet-julie.gifHave you met the newest "American Girl"?  Her name is Julie Albright.  She lives in San Francisco, California in the 1970's.  Her parents' recent divorce means many changes for Julie, including moving away from her best friend, Ivy Ling, a Chinese-American girl.  In the "Julie" books you'll learn about the women's movement, the U.S. bicentennial, presidential elections, divorce, environmentalists, and other issues from the turbulent 70's. Fans of the Judy Moody books may be interested to know that all of the "Julie" books are written by Megan McDonald.  So call the library to get on the waiting list for the books in this new series or place your hold through our online catalog.

Read Any Good Books Lately?

waydowndeep.gifOne summer day in 1944 a red-headed, curly-haired toddler mysteriously appears on the courthouse steps in Way Down Deep, Vest Virginia.  Who is she?  How did she get there?  You'll have to read Way Down Deep by Ruth White to find out.  It's one of the best books I've read recently.  Have you read any good books lately?  Click on the "Comments" link below and tell us about the last good book you've read.

Finding Award Winners

Have you ever wished you could see a list of all the Newbery or Caldecott award winning books?  This is something we get asked for quite often at the library.  Well, there is a nifty way to get this information in our library catalog.  Here's what you do:

What Comes Next?

book-question-mark.jpgHere at the library we often get asked questions like, "What's the name of the fourth book in the Little House on the Prairie series?" or "What book comes after Among the Betrayed by Margaret Peterson Haddix?" or "What's the name of book #28 in the Magic Tree House series?"  Well, if you've ever found yourself asking a question like this, here's a great website for you:  Juvenile Series and Sequels.  On this website you can type in a title and see other books in the same series...in order.  You can also search by author, subject, or series title.  You can always find a link to this website on our Cool Sites for Kids web page under "Books & Magazines." So if you are, for instance, attempting to read all the Boxcar Children books in order, this would be a great resource.

New DVDs

speedracer.gifDid you ever wish you could see a list of the newest DVDs in the Children's Department?  Well, you can!  Just click "Reader's Advisory" at the top of this page and then click the "New DVDs/Videos" link on the lefthand side of the Reader's Advisory page.  This will take you to a list of the newest DVDs the library has purchased.  The Adult titles are listed first followed by Children's titles.  You can just click on any title to see if it is available or checked out, and if it is checked out, you can place a hold to get on the waiting list.  You can also click "New Audios" to see the latest books on CD.  Click here to go directly to the list of DVDs.

The Dark Is Rising

darkisrising.gifThe movie The Seeker is currently playing at a theater near you.  Did you know it is based on Susan Cooper's The Dark Is Rising book series which can be found at a library near you?  It tells the story of Will Stanton who on his eleventh birthday discovers the important role he must play in the struggle to overcome the powers of the Dark.  This exciting series was written decades before the world had even heard of Harry Potter.  There are five books in the series:
1.  Over Sea, Under Stone 2.  The Dark Is Rising 3.  Greenwitch 4.  The Grey King (a Newbery Award winner!) 5.  Silver on the Tree
If you're looking for an exciting fantasy series, be sure to check these out!

Madeleine L'Engle 1918-2007

madeleine-lengle.jpgOne of my very favorite authors passed away last week.  Madeleine L'Engle died on September 6 at the age of 88.  L'Engle is probably best know for her Newbery award-winning book, A Wrinkle in Time.  She wrote more than 60 books for children and adults, including fiction, science fiction, poetry, plays, autobiographical works, and meditations on faith and art. The world has lost a gifted writer, but the books she left behind will be cherished by many for years and years to come.  If you haven't read any of Madeleine's books, I recommend you check out A Wrinkle in Time the next time you are in the library.

The Water Horse by Dick King-Smith

water-horse.gifDid you ever wonder where the Loch Ness Monster came from? The Water Horse tells the story of 8-year-old Kirstie, who finds an egg on the beach one day and brings it home with her. It hatches to reveal a small creature with flippers and a long neck. Kirstie and her family take care of the creature, which their grandfather tells them is a Kelpie, also known as a Water Horse. As the creature grows they move it from the bathtub out to the goldfish pond, then into a small lake nearby, and eventually to his final home. This book is recommended for grades 3 and up. The Water Horse is being made into a movie, which is currently scheduled to open in December. This is your chance to read it before everyone else hears about it and it becomes hard to find a copy available! Dick King-Smith has written many other books for children, including Babe, the Gallant Pig, on which the movie Babe was based. So if you like The Water Horse, give some of his other books a try as well!

It's a Harry Potter Summer

The summer of 2007 is an exciting one for fans of Harry Potter.  Harry's fifth year at Hogwarts will soon be seen on the silver screen.  Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix will be opening at a movie theater near you on Wednesday, July 11.  hpdeathlyhallows.gifThen on July 21, the seventh and final book of the Harry Potter saga will be released.  Everyone is speculating about how it will all end in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.  Advance sales of this book have broken all records.  The library currently has over 600 people on the waiting list for this hot new title.  If you want to get on the list, just call the library or place a hold through our library catalog.  The library will also acquire some limited loan/non-request copies.  If you're lucky, you may catch one of these on the shelf. Do you have any theories on how the final book will end?  What do you think is going to happen?  Just click "Comments" below and tell us what you think.
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