Moonrunner

Twelve-year-old Casey, an American boy who has just moved to Australia, chances upon a herd of wild brumbies, which reminds him of the wild mustangs of his home in Montana, and the relationship he develops with the stallion Moonrunner changes his life.

 

La Mariposa

In his first year of school, Francisco understands little of what his teacher says. But he is drawn to the silent, slow-moving caterpillar in the jar next to his desk. He knows caterpillars turn into butterflies, but just how do they do it? To find out, he studies the words in a butterfly book so many times that he can close his eyes and see the black letters, but he still can’t understand their meaning. Illustrated with paintings as deep and rich as the wings of a butterfly, this honest, unsentimental account of a schoolchild’s struggle to learn language reveals that our imaginations powerfully sustain us. La Mariposa makes a subtle plea for tolerance in our homes, our communities, and in our schools.

This book has been included in WOW’s Language and Learning: Children’s and Young Adult Fiction Booklist. For our current list, visit our Booklist page under Resources in the green navigation bar.

Dear Toni

When sixth-grader Gene Tucks moves south, she dreads being the new kid at school and almost everything else about her life as a “nobody.” But what she dreads most is the hundred-day journal-writing assignment her teacher has given the class. His brilliant idea is to have the journals locked in the town museum’s vault for forty years so that future grade-sixers can read them. At first, Gene has trouble writing to someone who isn’t even born yet. But little by little, Dear Nobody becomes Dear Somebody, who evolves into Dear Toni. And bit by bit, Toni, a good listener, becomes a best friend to whom Gene tells everything. And, there’s lots to tell. Gene’s family is in transition to say the least. Her dad is looking for work, they are moving — again, her brother is the bane of her existence, and, more than anything else in the world, Gene wants something she can’t have — a dog. Toni is the first to learn that Gene is moving to a rent-free empty apartment at the back of a gas station, so her dad can manage it. And wonder of wonders, the owner’s dog needs looking after. Not just any dog; a St. Bernard who happens to have three pups. Through Gene’s one hundred entries the whole story unwinds and in the end, just like Toni does forty years later, we have come to know one of the freshest, funniest characters to grace the pages of a book in a very long time. Decorated with doodles by the author, Dear Toni has the look and feel of a journal, but the heart of a special 12 year old.

The Mystery of the Cupboard

When Omri puts away the cupboard in The Secret of the Indian, he vows that it will be forever. Little Bear, Boone, and the other miniature figures he had brought to life will remain plastic. But then Omri and his family move to an old country farmhouse that they inherited from a distant relative, and he unearths a faded journal hidden in the thatched roof. To Omri’s utter amazement, the notebook was written by his “wicked” great-great-aunt Jessica Charlotte on her deathbed. Even more astonishing: It reveals how the cupboard and its magic were created–and changed the destiny of his family. In trying to right a wrong done in the past, Omri finds he has no choice but to break the promise he made to himself. The magical cupboard is opened once more.

When We Lived in Uncle’s Hat

There is always a story in moving house and this family has several to tell. From Uncle’s hat to Aunty’s violin, follow our family as they embark on an incredible adventure to find that elusive place called home.

The Closet Ghosts

With help from Hanuman, the Hindu monkey god, Anu finds a way to cope with going to a new school, living in a new home, and even dealing with the mischievous ghosts in her closet.

Rex Zero and the End of the World

Why does everyone seem so scared? That’s what the new boy in town, Rex Norton-Norton, aka Rex Zero, wonders as he rides his bike through Ottawa’s streets. Is it spies? Kidnappers? Or is it because of the shadowy creature some say is stalking Adams Park? One thing is certain in this summer of 1962 as the Cold War heats up: nothing is quite what it seems. What’s a boy to do? If his name is Rex Zero and he has a bike he calls “Diablo,” five wild and funny siblings, an alpha dog named Kincho, a basement bomb shelter built of old Punch magazines, and a mind that turns everything inside out, he’s bound to come up with an amazing idea.

Zen Shorts

When Stillwater the giant panda moves into the neighborhood, the stories he tells to three siblings teach them to look at the world in new ways.