Here's the booklist from this program and copies in Word doc format or in TEXT format.
Cross Country Checkup's Summer Reading List
July 15, 2012
With guest host Susan McReynolds
Alice Moore's suggestions The Ramona series
Children's librarian at the Gladstone Branch of the Toronto Public Library
, by Beverly Cleary (first book published in 1955)
"They were a favorite of mine. I was a very cautious child and I thought it was just so delicious that she was so naughty. We always say children need a window and a mirror in their books. She was a little window for me. And they're also very funny books. I love sharing them with my children now. The humour is still there." Any poem
, by Dennis Lee
"Such great fun. He's got such a way with a rhythm and a rhyme. I frequently say to parents and teachers that you've got to feed them this stuff before someone teaches them that poetry is serious business. When they're young, they're a natural for poetry. I still remember some of them by heart even now." Shiloh
, first of a trilogy by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor (Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 1991)
"It's a story of a young boy who finds a dog that is being mistreated. Against all advice, he goes to the cruel man who owns the dog and says, 'I'm not giving this dog back, but I will work for the cost of your dog.' This is not a book about improving children. This is a book that teaches you that children are already there."
Polly Horvath's suggestions Little Women, Eight Cousins
Polly Horvath is an award-winning children's author. Her book, Everything on a Waffle, which won a Newbery Honor, will be followed up this fall with the book, One Year in Coal Harbor. Her latest book, Mr. and Mrs. Bunny-Detectives Extraordinaire was published in February 2012.
, Louisa May Alcott (first published in 1868 and 1875)James and the Giant Peach or Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
, by Roald Dahl (Knopf Books for Young Readers, 1961; Knopf Books for Young Readers, 1964)Magic by the Lake
, or any of the seven books written by Edward Eager (Macmillan, 1957)
"These are spot on in terms of language, and a mix of magic and realism. Kids who love Harry Potter will love Edward Eager."
Kenneth Oppel's suggestions
Danny Champion of the World
Author of 16 books. He won the Governor General's Award for his book Airborn and his latest book, The Dark Endeavour, was published just last year is expected to be made into a motion picture.
, by Roald Dahl (Knopf Books for Young Readers, 1975)
"It's not a typical book for him. It's a more naturalistic, realistic book. It's a more compassionate book. It's about a boy and his father poaching pheasants from an obnoxious aristocrat who has land next to their own. I read it to my kids. I read it still for pleasure and solace. Perfect for ages 8 to 12." Awake and Dreaming
, by Kit Pearson (Viking Canada, 1996)
"A fantastic story about a girl fom a single-parent family who yearns for the perfect family. On the ferry one day, she meets one such family. She faints and wakes up in that family. It's about the longing and yearning for the perfect relationships." Feed
, by M.T. Anderson (Candlewick, 2004)
"This is for slightly older kids. It is set in a future where eveyrone has a live Internet feed hardwired into their brain. Everyone is literally online all the time. They're texting, learning, being marketed to... all at the same time. It's a noisy, vital world. Then due to a terrorist attack, the feed goes offline. It's a dystopian tale, a cautionary tale, a love story... it's one book that I wish I had written."
Melanie Watt's suggestions Stormy Night
Author and illustrator. She is best known for her Scaredy Squirrel series about a rather fretful squirrel who over-prepares for everything in life. A cartoon has been made on the series and she will add to the series with her upcoming book, Scaredy Squirrel Prepares for Christmas, which is due out in October.
, by Michele Lemieux (Kids Can Press, 1999)
by Michele Lemieux (Kids Can Press, 1999)
"It's a black and white book about the purpose of life. It a good book for starting discussions about all those big questions." Stella, Star of the Sea
or any of the Stella series, by Marie Louise Gay (Groundwood Books, 1999)
"I love how she captures the relationship of siblings. It's a touching relationship. She's a master at capturing that relationship." Alphabeasts
, by Wallace Edwards (Kids Can Press, 2002)
"It doesn't have a lot of texts. But it's a fascinating visual world. It's an amazing piece of art."
Cross Country Checkup Callers' Suggestions The Swallows and Amazons series
, by Arthur Ransome (first published in 1930)
"They're 12 books on very resourceful children on boats. They're so beautifully written and they stand up well. I read them out loud to my children when we went camping." The Leviathan
first of a trilogy, by Scott Westerfeld (Simon Pulse, 2009)
"A different version of World War I. It's about two different people on different sides of the war, whose paths keep crossing in a crazy journey all around the world. I like the author's imagination. He creates amazing worlds where people bring back dinosaurs or where people create machines that look like animals and walk on two legs. I recommend this book to everyone I meet." (Recommended by an 11-year-old caller) Paddle-to-the-Sea
, by Holling C. Holling (Houghton Mifflin, 1941)
"I read this as a child; my children read it; and now my grandchildren are reading it. It's an adventure book, a story of a young Indian boy who carves a wooden canoe. He puts a sign on it that says, ' I am Paddle-to-the-Sea. Throw me back in the water if you find me.' The boy travels all through the Great Lakes until he makes it into the ocean. It teaches you geography painlessly. It's beautifully illustrated. We in our family all now remember what lake comes first and how the lakes connect. I can still pick it up and enjoy the story." The Iron Witch series
, by Karen Mahoney (Flux, 2011)
"It's about a girl who's really lonely because her father died protecting her from a creature that breathes ice fire. And her replacement arms have designs on it that sometimes move. It's a story that takes you into the world of fairies, elves and other magical creatures." (Recommended by a 13-year-old caller) Popular Mechanics
a monthly magazine.
"Growing up as a farm boy, I struggled with reading and writing, and I loved my subscription of Popular Mechanics. There were short stories. They had stories about fixing and building things, as well as stories about science. They took me to a world beyond school and the farm. I kept many of the copies and I still pick up a copy when at the airport." Summerland
, by Michael Chabon (Hyperion Books, 2002)
"It's mostly centred around baseball but it's a really cool adventure story but it has mythological creatures. It's an adult book but I read it when I was six." (Recommended by an eight-year-old.) The Composer is Dead
,by Lemony Snicket (HarperCollins, 2009)
"This is a book and CD. It's a murder mystery where a detective investigates the death of a composer by scrutinizing every section of the orchestra. It's written with the wry wit of British humour." The Hunger Games
, by Suzanne Collins (Scholastic Press, 2008)
"It's a really well written story that merges reality and fantasy. It's very suspenseful. It makes me feel like a character in the book." (Recommended by a 12-year-old) The Chronicles of Narnia series
, by C.S. Lewis (first published by Geoffrey Bles, 1950)
"I discovered it when I was a girl, but I've read it many times since - to my husband, to my children. It's magical. It creates a world you want to be in." Encyclopedia Brown series
, by Donald J. Sobol (Dutton Juvenile, 1979)
"It's a mystery book made up of short stories. There are clues in each story that you can pick out to solve the mystery yourself." (Recommended by a 9-year-old) Gone
, by Michael Grant (HarperTeen, 2008)
"As a result of a nuclear explosion, everyone over the age of 15 disappears and everyone else develops superpowers. It's cool to imagine what could happen." (Recommended by a 17-year-old) Daughters of the Sea: Hannah
,part of a trilogy, by Kathryn Lasky (Scholastic, 2009)
About a 14-year-old girl who's sent away to be a scullery girl at a rich home. The eldest daughter of the family is her nemesis who sends her cat to attack Hannah regularly. In the book, Hannah slowly discovers that she's a mermaid. It's an enthralling book." (Recommended by a 12-year-old) The Borrowers
, by Mary Norton (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 1953)
"It's a book about little people who go out every night to steal stuff, which they call borrowing. There's a lot of fantasy, which I like." (Recommended by a 8-year-old)