Weekend Dad

This home is home because my dad is here, and it’s nothing like home because my mom isn’t here, thinks the boy in this story when he enters his dad’s new apartment for the first time. His dad moved out on Monday and now it’s Friday night, the start of his weekend with his dad. The boy and his dad follow their normal weekend routine — they eat eggs for breakfast, play cards and spend time at the park. And then they do the same things on Sunday. It is hard to say goodbye at the end of the weekend, but Dad gives his son a letter to remind him that, even if his dad can’t always be there, the boy is loved. Naseem Hrab has written a poignant yet hopeful story, strikingly illustrated in Frank Viva’s signature style, about what happens when parents separate, and the new reality of having two homes.

Shabanu: Daughter of the Wind

When eleven-year old Shabanu, the daughter of a nomad in the Cholistan Desert of present-day Pakistan, is pledged in marriage to an older man whose money will bring prestige to the family, she must either accept the decision, as is the custom, or risk the consequences of defying her father’s wishes.

This trilogy includes Shabanu, Haveli, and The House of Djinn.

Flora and Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures

It begins, as the best superhero stories do, with a tragic accident that has unexpected consequences. The squirrel never saw the vacuum cleaner coming, but self-described cynic Flora Belle Buckman, who has read every issue of the comic book Terrible Things Can Happen to You!, is the just the right person to step in and save him. What neither can predict is that Ulysses (the squirrel) has been born anew, with powers of strength, flight, and misspelled poetry — and that Flora will be changed too, as she discovers the possibility of hope and the promise of a capacious heart. From #1 New York Times best-selling author Kate DiCamillo comes a laugh-out-loud story filled with eccentric, endearing characters and featuring an exciting new format — a novel interspersed with comic-style graphic sequences and full-page illustrations, all rendered in black-and-white by up-and-coming artist K. G. Campbell.

The Great Big Book Of Families

This fun and fascinating treasury features all kinds of families and their lives together. Each spread showcases one aspect of home life from houses and holidays, to schools and pets, to feelings and family trees. A celebration of the diverse fabric of kith and kin the world over, The Great Big Book of Families is a great big treat for every family to share.

Truth And Salsa

A spirited young girl must travel far from home to finally find herself. MEXICO IS A LONG WAY from Kalamazoo–and not just in terms of miles. Almost-thirteen-year-old Hayley Flynn is spending six months with her eccentric grandmother in the rural mountain town of San Cristobal. Her father recently deserted the family and Hayley’s mom needs time to, as she puts it, “work things through.” Down in Mexico, everyone calls Hayley by her new, more glamorous chosen name, Margarita, and life is surprisingly exciting–exotic birds, beautiful butterflies, holidays, colorful fiestas, and new friends like Lili. Hayley and Lili even win parts as extras in a Hollywood movie being filmed in the town. But there are also difficult lessons to be learned. Poverty and unemployment send Lili’s father and other men from the village to Michigan to work as migrant workers so they can send money back home to their anxious families. Meanwhile Hayley is on the lookout for la fantasma (the ghost) that is said to haunt her grandma’s house. With Lili’s help she solves the mystery–and prepares for a new life with her mom back in the States.

He Forgot To Say Goodbye

“Ramiro Lopez and Jake Upthegrove don’t appear to have much in common. Ram lives in the Mexican-American working-class barrio of El Paso called “Dizzy Land.” His brother is sinking into a world of drugs, wreaking havoc in their household. Jake is a rich West Side white boy who has developed a problem managing his anger. An only child, he is a misfit in his mother’s shallow and materialistic world. But Ram and Jake do have one thing in common: They are lost boys who have never met their fathers. This sad fact has left both of them undeniably scarred and obsessed with the men who abandoned them. As Jake and Ram overcome their suspicions of each other, they begin to move away from their loner existences and realize that they are capable of reaching out beyond their wounds and the neighborhoods that they grew up in. Their friendship becomes a healing in a world of hurt.

Worry Warts

In this sequel to Misery Guts, the ever-cheerful Keith Shipley has reached Australia, but even halfway around the world, he frets over his parents’ happiness, hoping that making a fortune in the opal mines will save his family.