Realistic & Contemporary fiction

Grades 4-6


Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library

By Chris Grabenstein

2013- Random House Books for Young Readers

This book is apart of the Mr. Lemoncello’s Library Series.

Kyle Keeley is the class clown and an ardent fan of all games: board games, word games, and particularly video games. His hero, Luigi Lemoncello, the most notorious and creative gamemaker in the world, just so happens to be the genius behind the building of the new town library. Kyle wins a coveted spot to be one of the first 12 kids in the library for an overnight of fun, food, and lots of games. But when morning comes, the doors remain locked! Kyle and the other winners must solve every clue and every puzzle if they are ever going to find the secret escape route.

Note to Teachers: A great read for kids who loved Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

Keywords: Adventure, Codes, Escapes, Friendship, Games, Libraries, Literature, Puzzles, Riddles, Teamwork


Liar and Spy

By Rebecca Stead

2012- Random House

When seventh grader Georges (the S is silent) moves into a Brooklyn apartment building, he meets Safer, a twelve-year-old coffee-drinking loner and self-appointed spy. Georges becomes Safer's first spy recruit. His assignment? Tracking the mysterious Mr. X, who lives in the apartment upstairs. But as Safer becomes more demanding, Georges starts to wonder: how far is too far to go for your only friend?

Keywords: Apartments, Bullying, Espionage, Friendship, Mystery, New York City, Spies.


The One and Only Ivan

By Katherine Applegate

2012- Harper Collins

Ivan the gorilla lives at the Exit 8 Big Top Mall and Video Arcade, where he’s gotten used to humans watching him through the glass walls of his domain. He rarely thinks about his childhood in the jungle anymore. Instead, Ivan thinks about his friends Stella, an elderly elephant, and Bob, a stray dog. And he thinks about art—how to capture the taste of a mango or the sound of leaves with color and a well-placed line. Then he meets Ruby, a baby elephant taken from her family, and she makes Ivan see their home—and his own art—through new eyes. When Ruby arrives, change comes with her, and it’s up to Ivan to make it a change for the better.

Note to Teachers: A great read for kids who loved Charlotte’s Web

Keywords: Animals, Animal Welfare, Art, Circus, Dogs, Elephants, Friendship, Gorillas, Zoos