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MCPL to Offer New Book Club for Tweens This Summer

Tween Book Club image

May 21, 2022

Fantastic Books and Where to Find Them is a new book club for tweens between the ages of 8-14. It will meet twice a month at MCPL Wausau starting in June and during each meeting, we'll talk about books and do fun, book-related activities! This is a great way to gather with friends during long summer days and to meet new kids who are also interested in reading.

Unlike traditional book clubs where everyone reads and discusses the same book, we will instead be reading books around a similar genre or theme for each meeting. For example, at our first meeting on June 15, everyone should read a graphic novel - but it doesn’t need to be the same one! Make sure to register for the book club in advance on our website by clicking the "REGISTER" button next to each session you plan to attend and filling out the registration form.

Not sure what book to choose? Read on for a few recommendations in each category! Remember, you can read any book in the genre, it’s not limited to these suggestions.


GRAPHIC NOVELS

Book Cover: SHIRLEY AND JAMILA SAVE THEIR SUMMER

"SHIRLEY AND JAMILA SAVE THEIR SUMMER" by GILLIAN GOERZ

Jamila Waheed is staring down a lonely summer in a new neighborhood—until she meets Shirley Bones. Sure, Shirley's a little strange, but both girls need a new plan for the summer, and they might as well become friends. Then this kid Oliver shows up begging for Shirley's help. His pet gecko has disappeared, and he's sure it was stolen! That's when Jamila discovers Shirley's secret: She's the neighborhood's best kid detective, and she's on the case. When Jamila discovers she's got some detective skills of her own, a crime-solving partnership is born. The mystery of the missing gecko turns Shirley and Jamila's summer upside down. And when their partnership hits a rough patch, they have to work together to solve the greatest mystery of all: What it means to be a friend.

Book Cover: QUEEN OF THE SEA

"QUEEN OF THE SEA" by DYLAN MECONIS

When her sister seizes the throne, Queen Eleanor of Albion is banished to a tiny island off the coast of her kingdom, where the nuns of the convent spend their days peacefully praying, sewing, and gardening. But the island is also home to Margaret, a mysterious young orphan girl whose life is upturned when the cold, regal stranger arrives. As Margaret grows closer to Eleanor, she grapples with the revelation of the island's sinister true purpose as well as the truth of her own past. When Eleanor's life is threatened, Margaret is faced with a perilous choice between helping Eleanor and protecting herself. In a hybrid novel of fictionalized history, Dylan Meconis paints Margaret's world in soft greens, grays, and reds, transporting readers to a quiet, windswept island at the heart of a treasonous royal plot.

Book Cover: BORDERS

"BORDERS" by THOMAS KING

A masterfully told story of a boy and his mother whose road trip is thwarted at the border when they identify their citizenship as Blackfoot. Refusing to identify as either American or Canadian first bars their entry into the US, and then their return into Canada. In the limbo between countries, they find power in their connection to their identity and to each other.

BOOKS SET IN A FOREIGN COUNTRY

Book Cover: THE BOGGART

"THE BOGGART" by SUSAN COOPER

In a tumbledown castle in the Western Highlands of Scotland lives the Boggart. He is invisible— an ancient mischievous spirit, solitary and sly, born of a magic as old as the rocks and the waves. He has lived in Castle Keep for centuries, playing tricks on the owners. But the last Scottish owner has died and left the castle to his great-nephew Robert Volnik of Toronto, Canada. The Volnik family—including Emily and her nine-year-old computer genius brother Jessup—visit Castle Keep, and when they return to Toronto, they unwittingly take the Boggart with them.

Book Cover: WHEN LIFE GIVES YOU MANGOS

"WHEN LIFE GIVES YOU MANGOS" by KEREEN GETTEN

A small village on a Jamaican island. A girl who doesn't remember the previous summer. A best friend who is no longer acting like one; a new girl who fills that hole in her heart. A summer of finding fallen mangos, creating made up games and dancing in the rain. Secrets she keeps from others...and herself. The courage to face the truth even in the toughest of storms.

Book Cover: A THOUSAND QUESTIONS

"A THOUSAND QUESTIONS" by SAADIA FARUQI

Mimi is not thrilled to be spending her summer in Karachi, Pakistan, with grandparents she’s never met. Secretly, she wishes to find her long-absent father, and plans to write to him in her beautiful new journal. The cook’s daughter, Sakina, still hasn’t told her parents that she’ll be accepted to school only if she can improve her English test score—but then, how could her family possibly afford to lose the money she earns working with her Abba in a rich family’s kitchen? Although the girls seem totally incompatible at first, as the summer goes on, Sakina and Mimi realize that they have plenty in common—and that they each need the other to get what they want most.

COOKBOOKS

Book Cover: 20 RECIPES KIDS SHOULD KNOW

"20 RECIPES KIDS SHOULD KNOW " by ESME WASHBURN

This cookbook features 20 classic recipes that are fun, easy to prepare, healthy, and adaptable. From banana bread and the perfect grilled cheese to breaded chicken and apple pie, each recipe is written in a clear, accessible style that young cooks of every level will be able to follow.

Book Cover: LIVING ON THE VEG

"LIVING ON THE VEG" by CLIVE GIFFORD

A vegetarian diet is good for your health, animal welfare, the planet—and it tastes great too. But taking that first step can be daunting. Living on the Veg provides clear reasons why you might choose to live without meat and advice from longtime vegetarians on everything from explaining your decision to family and friends to understanding food labels. Key information about nutrition helps you make sure you are getting the nutrients you need. Plus, 12 delicious and easy-to-make vegetarian recipes will inspire you to get started on your veggie life.

Book Cover: THE COMPLETE BAKING BOOK FOR YOUNG CHEFS

"THE COMPLETE BAKING BOOK FOR YOUNG CHEFS" by MOLLY BIRNBAUM

By empowering young chefs to make their own choices in the kitchen, America's Test Kitchen is building a new generation of confident cooks, engaged eaters, and curious experimenters. From breakfast to breads, from cookies to cakes (yes, even cupcakes!), learn to bake it all here. You can do this, and it's fun!

NATURE/THE ENVIRONMENT

Book Cover: CAST AWAY: POEMS FOR OUR TIME

"CAST AWAY: POEMS FOR OUR TIME " by NAOMI SHIHAB NYE

Acclaimed poet and Young People’s Poet Laureate Naomi Shihab Nye shines a spotlight on the things we cast away in this collection of more than eighty original and never-before-published poems. With poems about food wrappers, lost mittens, plastic straws, refugee children, trashy talk, the environment, connection, community, responsibility to the planet, politics, immigration, time, junk mail, trash collectors, garbage trucks, all that we carry and all that we discard, this is a rich, engaging, moving, and sometimes humorous collection for readers ages twelve to adult.

Book Cover: THE LINE TENDER

"THE LINE TENDER" by KATE ALLEN

Heartbreaking but also filled with wit and hope, The Line Tender is the story of Lucy, the daughter of a marine biologist and a rescue diver, and the summer that changes her life. If she ever wants to lift the cloud of grief over her family and community, she must complete the research her late mother began. She must follow the sharks.

Book Cover: CAN YOU HEAR THE TREES TALKING?

"CAN YOU HEAR THE TREES TALKING?" by PETER WOHLLEBEN

Discover the secret life of trees with this nature and science book for kids: Can You Hear the Trees Talking? shares the mysteries and magic of the forest with young readers, revealing what trees feel, how they communicate, and the ways trees take care of their families. The author of The Hidden Life of Trees, Peter Wohlleben, tells kids about the forest internet, aphids who keep ants as pets, nature’s water filters, and more fascinating things that happen under the canopy.

BOOKS WITH ANIMAL CHARACTERS

Book Cover: THE MURDERER’S APE

"THE MURDERER’S APE " by JAKOB WEGELIUS

Sally Jones is not only a loyal friend, she's an extraordinary individual. In overalls or in a maharaja's turban, this unique gorilla moves among humans without speaking but understanding everything. She and the Chief are devoted comrades who operate a cargo boat. A job they are offered pays big bucks, but the deal ends badly, and the Chief is falsely convicted of murder. For Sally Jones this is the start of a harrowing quest for survival and to clear the Chief's name. Powerful forces are working against her, and they will do anything to protect their secrets.

Book Cover: WHEN YOU TRAP A TIGER

"WHEN YOU TRAP A TIGER" by TAE KELLER

When Lily and her family move in with her sick grandmother, a magical tiger straight out of her halmoni's Korean folktales arrives, prompting Lily to unravel a secret family history. Long, long ago, Halmoni stole something from the tigers. Now they want it back. And when one of the tigers approaches Lily with a deal—return what her grandmother stole in exchange for Halmoni's health—Lily is tempted to agree. But deals with tigers are never what they seem! With the help of her sister and her new friend Ricky, Lily must find her voice...and the courage to face a tiger.

Book Cover: THE BEATRYCE PROPHECY

"THE BEATRYCE PROPHECY" by KATE DICAMILLO

In a time of war, a mysterious child appears at the monastery of the Order of the Chronicles of Sorrowing. Gentle Brother Edik finds the girl, Beatryce, curled in a stall, wracked with fever, coated in dirt and blood, and holding fast to the ear of Answelica the goat. As the monk nurses Beatryce to health, he uncovers her dangerous secret, one that imperils them all—for the king of the land seeks just such a girl, and Brother Edik, who penned the prophecy himself, knows why.

SCI-FI/FANTASY

Book Cover: THE LAST CUENTISTA

"THE LAST CUENTISTA" by DONNA BARBA HIGUERA

Petra's world is ending. Earth has been destroyed by a comet, and only a few hundred scientists and their children—among them Petra and her family—have been chosen to journey to a new planet. They are the ones who must carry on the human race.

Book Cover: TIME TRAVELING WITH A HAMSTER

"TIME TRAVELING WITH A HAMSTER" by ROSS WELFORD

On his 12th birthday, Al Chaudhury receives a letter from his dead father. It directs him to the bunker of their old house, where Al finds a time machine (an ancient computer and a tin bucket). The letter also outlines a mission: travel back to 1984 and prevent the go-kart accident that will eventually take his father’s life. But as Al soon discovers, whizzing back thirty years requires not only imagination and courage, but also lying to your mom, stealing a moped, and setting your school on fire—oh, and keeping your pet hamster safe.

Book Cover: THE CRYSTAL RIBBON

"THE CRYSTAL RIBBON " by CELESTE LIM

Jing's life in medieval China isn't easy. Her father is a poor tea farmer, and her family has come to the conclusion that in order for everyone to survive, Jing must be sacrificed for the common good. She is sold as a bride to the Koh family, where she will be the wife and nursemaid to their three-year-old son, Ju'nan. It's not fair, and Jing feels this bitterly, especially when she is treated poorly by the Kohs, and sold yet again into a worse situation that leads Jing to believe her only option is to run away, and find home again. With the help of a spider who weaves Jing a means to escape, and a nightingale who helps her find her way, Jing embarks on a quest back to Huanan—and to herself.


Book Clubs Books Children Events Graphic Novels Reading Recommendations Summer Library Program Tweens

image credit: MCPL