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January Bestsellers

11 Jan

Picture Books

1. Happy Valentine’s Day, Mouse! by Laura Numeroff ($2 in Firefly)
2. You Think It’s Easy Being the Tooth Fairy? by Sheri Bell-Rehwoldt ($4 in SeeSaw)
3. Penguins by Liz Pichon ($3 in
Firefly)
4. Groundhog Weather School by Joan Holub ($4 in
SeeSaw)
5. Grumpy Gloria by Anna Dewdney ($2 in
Firefly)

Transitional Readers

1. Gus Makes a Friend by Frank Remkiewicz ($2 in Firefly)
2. Fancy Nancy: The 100th Day of School by Jane O’Connor ($3 in
SeeSaw)
3. Fly Guy Meets Fly Girl! by Tedd Arnold ($3 in
SeeSaw)
4. Ant Hill: Big Heart! A Valentine’s Day Tale by Joan Holub ($2 in
SeeSaw)
5. It’s the 100th Day, Stinky Face! by Lisa McCourt ($3 in
SeeSaw)

Early Chapter Books

1. Moonlight on the Magic Flute (Magic Tree House® #41) by Mary Pope Osborne ($2 in Lucky)
2. Horrible Harry on the Ropes by Suzy Kline ($2 in
Lucky)
3. My Weird School: Mr. Macky Is Wacky! by Dan Gutman ($3 in
Lucky)
4. Geronimo Stilton: The Giant Diamond Robbery ($5 in
Lucky)
5. Horrible Harry and the Dead Letters by Suzy Kline ($2 in
SeeSaw)

Chapter Books

1. Dear Dumb Diary: Okay, So Maybe I Do Have Superpowers by Jim Benton ($3 in Arrow)
2. Wild Card by Tiki and Ronde Barber ($3 in
Arrow)
3. Goddess Girls: Aphrodite the Beauty by Joan Holub and Suzanne Williams ($3 in
Arrow)
4. Touch Blue by Cynthia Lord ($3 in
Arrow)
5. Matilda by Roald Dahl ($3 in
Arrow)

Middle Grade

1. Saving Zasha by Randi Barrow ($4 in Arrow)
2. Rules by Cynthia Lord ($3 in
Arrow)
3.
Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan ($4 in
Arrow)
4. Al Capone Shines My Shoes by Gennifer Choldenko ($5 in
TAB)
5. Heroes of Olympus: The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan ($12 in
TAB)

Young Adult

1. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins ($7 in TAB)
2. Rules by Cynthia Lord ($3 in
Arrow)
3. Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine ($4 in
TAB)
4. Al Capone Shines My Shoes by Gennifer Choldenko ($5 in
TAB)
5. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins ($7 in
TAB)


Nonfiction

1. If You Were a Penguin by Wendell Minor ($3 in SeeSaw)
2. Bad Pets by Allan Zullo ($2 in
Lucky)
3. Abe Lincoln: The Boy Who Loved Books by Kay Winters ($4 in
Lucky)
4. Meet George Washington by Patricia A. Pingry ($4 in
SeeSaw)
5. Martin’s Big Words by Doreen Rappaport ($4 in
SeeSaw)

 

Scholastic Book Clubs’ Bestsellers are the most popular books offered across all age groups (PreK–8) each month. The ranking is based on the unit sales of titles available at the time through Scholastic Book Clubs. Books available each month for $1 are not included.

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Picture Books

1. Happy Valentine’s Day, Mouse! by Laura Numeroff ($2 in Firefly)

2. You Think It’s Easy Being the Tooth Fairy? by Sheri Bell-Rehwoldt ($4 in SeeSaw)

3. Penguins by Liz Pichon ($3 in Firefly)

4. Groundhog Weather School by Joan Holub ($4 in SeeSaw)

5. Grumpy Gloria by Anna Dewdney ($2 in Firefly)

Transitional Readers

1. Gus Makes a Friend by Frank Remkiewicz ($2 in Firefly)

2. Fancy Nancy: The 100th Day of School by Jane O’Connor ($3 in SeeSaw)

3. Fly Guy Meets Fly Girl! by Tedd Arnold ($3 in SeeSaw)

4. Ant Hill: Big Heart! A Valentine’s Day Tale by Joan Holub ($2 in SeeSaw)

5. It’s the 100th Day, Stinky Face! by Lisa McCourt ($3 in SeeSaw)

Early Chapter Books

1. Moonlight on the Magic Flute (Magic Tree House® #41) by Mary Pope Osborne ($2 in Lucky)

2. Horrible Harry on the Ropes by Suzy Kline ($2 in Lucky)

3. My Weird School: Mr. Macky Is Wacky! by Dan Gutman ($3 in Lucky)

4. Geronimo Stilton: The Giant Diamond Robbery ($5 in Lucky)

5. Horrible Harry and the Dead Letters by Suzy Kline ($2 in SeeSaw)

Chapter Books

1. Dear Dumb Diary: Okay, So Maybe I Do Have Superpowers by Jim Benton ($3 in Arrow)

2. Wild Card by Tiki and Ronde Barber ($3 in Arrow)

3. Goddess Girls: Aphrodite the Beauty by Joan Holub and Suzanne Williams ($3 in Arrow)

4. Touch Blue by Cynthia Lord ($3 in Arrow)

5. Matilda by Roald Dahl ($3 in Arrow)

Young Adult

1. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins ($7 in TAB)

2. Rules by Cynthia Lord ($3 in Arrow)

3. Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine ($4 in TAB)

4. Al Capone Shines My Shoes by Gennifer Choldenko ($5 in TAB)

5. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins ($7 in TAB)

Nonfiction

1. If You Were a Penguin by Wendell Minor ($3 in SeeSaw)

2. Bad Pets by Allan Zullo ($2 in Lucky)

3. Abe Lincoln: The Boy Who Loved Books by Kay Winters ($4 in Lucky)

4. Meet George Washington by Patricia A. Pingry ($4 in SeeSaw)

5. Martin’s Big Words by Doreen Rappaport ($4 in SeeSaw)

Author Interview: Kathryn Erskine

6 Jan

This January, Book Talk was lucky enough to pose a few questions to Kathryn Erskine, author of the National Book Award–winning Mockingbird. (You know how excited we are about this book!)

Read on to find out how Erskine came up with Caitlin and the whole Mockingbird story, as well as her own history as a reader.

Book Talk: You just won the National Book Award; are you going to Disney World after this?

Kathryn Erskine: Well, I came home from New York to a broken fridge-freezer and rotten, stinky, dripping food, so I got to clean my fridge! Woo hoo! Actually, I thought it was pretty funny—no chance of the award going to my head when I was on my hands and knees scrubbing out the fridge!

BT: How does it feel to win the National Book Award?

KE: Pretty amazing. It’s still sinking in. When I read an article about it in my local paper, that’s when it felt real. I guess I’m such a reader that I have to read something to believe it!

BT: After you finished the book, did you know you had written something special?

KE: Because Asperger’s is so much a part of my life, I thought it might be too ordinary, but others who don’t live with it every day assured me that it was something quite different and special. People seem so touched that I think there must be something special about it.

BT: When you first conceived of the idea of this book, which came first for you—the plot or the characters?

KE: The characters always come first for me. They have conversations in my head and whole scenes take place. The plot is often hard to pin down. After the Virginia Tech shootings, however, I knew I had to incorporate a school shooting aspect into the plot and, since it’s a book for kids, I wanted that event to have already occurred before the book opened, so it wouldn’t be so scary.

BT: In your mind, is this a book about a girl with Asperger’s or a family dealing with an unspeakable act of violence?

KE: It’s more about a girl feeling alone in dealing with her brother’s death. To her, the fact that it was a school shooting is not as huge as it is to the rest of the community. For Caitlin, the bottom line is that she has lost her brother who was her link to the outside world. And, because she has Asperger’s, she has a particularly tough road to travel to make connections with her community again.

BT: Caitlin is so endearing. Was there an inspiration for her character?

KE: As always, my characters contain bits and pieces of people I know. Caitlin, in particular, was inspired by a close family member, but mostly she’s a made-up character. She is, so to speak, her own person.

BT: How did you manage to get inside Caitlin’s head in order to write from her point of view? Did you have much prior knowledge of Asperger’s?

KE: I do have experience with Asperger’s, but I also did a lot of research. Just as every kid is different, every kid with Asperger’s is different, so I needed to look at a wide variety of personality traits, behaviors, and habits in order to create an authentic character on the autism spectrum. I went to seminars and workshops, read a lot of books and articles, talked with teachers and parents who interact daily with kids on the spectrum, and I know kids with Asperger’s, too. For me, it felt perfectly natural to be inside her head, and the story just flowed.

BT: Caitlin starts the book by looking up the word “closure.” Language is a big aspect of Mockingbird with certain syllables of words being capitalized and Caitlin’s own infatuation with language. Did this evolve naturally from Caitlin’s character or did you want language to be a part of the book from the beginning?

KE: It’s really a part of Caitlin’s character and I wanted to preserve the unconventional way she wrote throughout the book as a constant reminder to the reader that she sees things differently. Also, words and books are a source of comfort to Caitlin because they don’t change. She can rely on them because they’re constant. Finding a definition is another way for her to hold on to something and have control over her world.

BT: This is such a heartbreaking story; did you cry while writing it at anytime?

KE: Yes, particularly at the end. I needed to rewrite the final chapter because it wasn’t quite working, and my editor told me that when I was crying at my keyboard, I would know I’d hit the right ending. And that’s what happened.

BT: When you hear from kids, what do they tell you they’ve learned or thought about as a result of reading Mockingbird?

KE: Younger kids tend to be very pragmatic about it. They say that now they get people like Caitlin and they think she’s funny—but ha-ha funny, not weird funny. Older kids, teens, and adults feel the poignancy and are grateful to have a chance to understand those like Caitlin. And people, young and older, with Asperger’s have thanked me for “nailing it” and telling this story.

BT: Were you a big reader as a kid? If so, what books?

KE: I’ve always loved reading and read a lot as a kid. I went through phases: series, biographies, mysteries, adventures, encyclopedias (really!), nonfiction on specific topics (horses, Australia, earth sciences, etc.), and specific authors like Enid Blyton and Arthur Ransome. I tended to pull books off our shelves at home, so I read Nevil Shute and Graham Greene when I was 10 and 11. We were allowed to read anything, encouraged to, actually. That’s why I read To Kill a Mockingbird at 8. I don’t think any of the books scarred me; in fact, they helped me look at the world from viewpoints I’d never imagined…sort of like Caitlin does.

You can find Mockingbird on TAB this January!

January Dollar Books!

16 Dec

Hey BookTalkers, we have a special holiday treat for you… it’s the January $1 books! Click through for more! Continue reading

December’s Bestsellers

14 Dec

Picture Books

 

1. Little Critter’s The Night Before Christmas by Mercer Mayer ($2.00 in Firefly)
2. The Gingerbread Pirates by Kristin Kladstrup ($4.00 in SeeSaw)
3. Sneezy the Snowman by Maureen Wright ($4.00 in SeeSaw)
4. The Night Before New Year’s by Natasha Wing ($2.00 in Firefly)
5. The Little Reindeer by Caroline Repchuk ($3.00 in SeeSaw)

 

Transitional Readers and Early Chapter Books

1. I SPY Santa Claus riddles by Jean Marzollo, photos by Walter Wick ($2.00 in SeeSaw)
2. Tangled: Kingdom of Color ($3.00 in SeeSaw)
3. Magic Tree House® #29: Christmas in Camelot by Mary Pope Osborne ($2.00 in Lucky)
4. A Cars Christmas ($3.00 in Firefly)
5. Ready, Freddy! The Perfect Present by Abby Klein ($2.00 in Lucky)

Chapter Books

1. Diary of a Wimpy Kid #5: The Ugly Truth by Jeff Kinney ($7.00 in Arrow)
2. The Pup Who Cried Wolf by Chris Kurtz ($2.00 in Arrow)
3. The Christmas Genie by Dan Gutman ($3.00 in Arrow)
4. Tangled: The Junior Novelization ($4.00 in Arrow)
5. Thirteen Ways to Sink a Sub by Jamie Gilson ($3.00 in Arrow)

Middle Grade Fiction

1. Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief Graphic Novel by Rick Riordan ($9.00 in Arrow and TAB)
2. The Winter Room by Gary Paulsen ($3.00 in Arrow)
3. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling ($8.00 in Lucky, Arrow, and TAB)
4. Don’t Judge a Girl by Her Cover by Ally Carter ($5.00 in Arrow)
5. Closed for the Season by Mary Downing Hahn ($3.00 in TAB)

Young Adult Fiction

1. How to Ditch Your Fairy by Justine Larbalestier ($5.00 in TAB)
2. Accidental Love by Gary Soto ($4.00 in TAB)
3. Missing by Catherine MacPhail ($4.00 in TAB)
4. The Dying Breath by Alane Ferguson ($5.00 in TAB)
5. Belly Up by Stuart Gibbs ($4.00 in TAB)

Nonfiction (All Ages)

1. 3-D Thrillers! The Ice Age and Incredible Pre-Historic Animals ($4.00 in Lucky)
2. How to Do Homework Without Throwing Up by Trevor Romain ($3.00 in Lucky and Arrow)
3. Scholastic Book of World Records 2011 ($9.00 in Lucky)
4 Why Is the White House White? by Connie and Peter Roop ($2.00 in Lucky)
5. Thirty Days Has September: Cool Ways to Remember Stuff ($3.00 in Arrow)

Scholastic Book Clubs’ Bestsellers are the most popular books offered across all age groups (PreK–8) each month. The ranking is based on the unit sales of titles available at the time through Scholastic Book Clubs. Books available each month for $1 are not included.

December Dollar Books!

24 Nov

Hey BookTalkers, we have a special Thanksgiving eve treat for you and just in time for the holidays…it’s the December $1 books! Click through for more! Continue reading

November’s Bestsellers

16 Nov

Picture Books

 

1. Snowmen at Night by Caralyn Buehner ($2.00 in the Holiday Gift Books Special Offer)
2. Llama, Llama Holiday Drama by Anna Dewdney ($10.00 in Firefly)
3. Corduroy’s Christmas Surprise by Lisa McCue ($2.00 in Honeybee)
4. Merry Christmas, Splat by Rob Scotton ($4.00 in SeeSaw)
5. Little Engine That Could and the Snowy Blowy Christmas by Watty Piper ($2.00 in Honeybee)


Transitional Readers

1. I SPY Thanksgiving riddles by Jean Marzolla ($2.00 in SeeSaw)
2. Pinkalicious: Pink Around the Rink by Victoria Kann ($3.00 in SeeSaw)
3. Little Critter: Snowball Soup by Mercer Mayer ($2.00 in Honeybee and SeeSaw)
4. Biscuit Meets the Class Pet by Alyssa Satin Capucilli ($2.00 in SeeSaw)
5. How to Train Your Dragon: Hiccup the Hero ($3.00 in SeeSaw)
Early Chapter Books

1. The Chocolate Touch by Patrick Skene Catling ($3.00 in Lucky)
2. The Author Visit from the Black Lagoon by Mike Thaler ($3.00 in Lucky)
3. Sophie the Chatterbox by Lara Bergen ($2.00 in Lucky)
4. The Puppy Place: Ziggy by Ellen Miles ($3.00 in Lucky)
5. Phineas and Ferb: Freeze Frame ($4.00 in Lucky)


Chapter Books

1. Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Ugly Truth by Jeff Kinney ($7.00 in Lucky, Arrow, and TAB)
2. Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson ($2.00 in the Holiday Gift Books Special Offer and Arrow)
3. No Such Thing as Dragons by Philip Reeve ($3.00 in Arrow)
4. Now You See Me… (A Poison Apple Book) by Jane B. Mason and Sarah Hines Stephens ($3.00 in Arrow)
5. I Survived the Sinking of the Titanic, 1912 by Lauren Tarshis ($3.00 in Arrow)


Middle Grade

1. The Heroes of Olympus, Book One: The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan ($12.00 in Arrow and TAB)
2. A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens ($2.00 in TAB)
3. A Dog’s Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron ($5.00 in TAB)
4. Dark Fire by Chris D’Lacey ($6.00 in Arrow)
5. Immortal by Gillian Shields ($6.00 in TAB)


Nonfiction

1. Justin Bieber Quiz Book ($3.00 in the Holiday Gift Books Special Offer and Arrow)
2. Your Body (Usborne Beginners) ($3.00 in Firefly)
3. Scholastic Book of World Records 2011 ($9.00 in Arrow)
4. National Geographic Kids: Penguins! by Anne Schreiber ($3.00 in SeeSaw)
5. Bears (Usborne Beginners) ($2.00 in Lucky)

 

Scholastic Book Clubs’ Bestsellers are the most popular books offered across all age groups (PreK–8) each month. The ranking is based on the unit sales of titles available at the time through Scholastic Book Clubs. Books available each month for $1 are not included.

Book Trailer Friday! The Lost Hero!

29 Oct

Happy Friday everyone!

It’s time for another exciting installment of Book Trailer Friday! This week’s pick is from Rick Riordan’s new series, The Heroes of Olympus. We’re very excited about this book here in the office and if you haven’t read the book already, what are you waiting for? It’s Percy Jackson times two! Well, why don’t we let Rick tell you about it:


Don’t forget, you can find The Heroes of Olympus, Book One: The Lost Hero in November’s Arrow and TAB catalogs. Can’t get enough Rick Riordan? Be sure to check out his author page here.