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Since returning, I've hit the ground running probably faster than ever, although that equates to my car still being pretty much packed with stuff from the move. A few personal goals, such as running the Green River Narrows, were finally checked off my list. More importantly I've reached a few career goals, such as becoming contributor for Aurora Photos , an phenomenal agency I've been eyeing for quite some time. The calendar is booked for months and the projects are coming together, stay tuned for more developments!

Although this is just scratching the surface of the past few months, sometimes things just can't be written; instead shared over a good cup of coffee--which I'd be more than happy to do for anyone. It's been more than a month since my "Manifest Destiny" post about my move from Western North Carolina to the Tahoe basin area of California. Much to my surprise, the past moth has been a huge era of introspection and change, as my personal shooting has halted, and my brain has been transformed to that more of an IT man than a creative.

Thinking back on what I've shot or a lack thereof , I find myself a little bit jaded on the lack of progress I've made, but scrolling through my catalog earlier today, maybe it hasn't been that bad. I realized I only feel like I'm coming up short of the immense beauty of the area--I don't think I'll ever be able to adequately photograph the area and give someone the same feeling as being here. A few projects have recently opened themselves up which is incredibly exciting; one's even believe it or not portraits!

As the calendar books up for the fall, I can't wait to get going again and really start knocking things out. Tomorrow marks the beginning of yet another project that hopefully will come to fruition over the next month or so. Keep an eye out for more directed work, and enjoy these for now. From time to time, I'll get a project that just can't be finished, for whatever reason. Sometimes it's on my end, sometimes it's on others.

This one was just a nightmare of an edit with 5 different versions, and a media library that could send an OCD guy to an asylum. I finally geared down, grunted through and finished off the project and can move onto more video out here in California.

Dancing Dream - (Meaning and interpretation)

While this has been on Vimeo for a week or so and promoted elsewhere, I figured I'd go ahead and do a little update here with it as well for you non-followers elsewhere. This past week, I did something similar--although modern road systems and interstates made it quite a bit easier than my 19th century counterparts. As someone who has poured themselves over Trevor's work throughout the past few years, it's a dream to get the opportunity to move out here to California to work with Trevor. We left Boone last Thursday, immediately after my final exam presentation, and booked it out to St.

Louis for an evening. After some great hospitality from my friend Tyler, we headed across the great state of Kansas for a quick stop in Summit County, then onward to the dry desert around Moab, UT for a quick bike ride, and further onto an unexpected beauty of Western Utah at Castle Rock. Sunday night I arrived to my new home here in South Lake to a place full of friendly roommates, and an almost instantaneous tour of Lake Tahoe from the boat.

Lake Tahoe, and in general, the American West has fully lived up to its hype. Around every corner another dramatic view of snowy mountain peaks awaits, with trails and ski lines scattered about. Big thanks to Trevor for allowing me this opportunity, and even a bigger thanks for sharing my enthusiasm! Trevor put up a great introductory blog post --take a look and keep up with what's happening over at TCP!

The weather over the past weeks here in Boone has been questionable at best for the minds of most--but for paddlers it's been great.

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Full size consecutive storms in the area have dumped enough water in the area to have some seldom seen areas run, including North Harper's Creek, a technical sloping 35 footer with a 10 foot lead in boof. A few friends and I hiked in for some shooting. However, with a few breaks in the clouds, we managed to get up into the Linville Wilderness to get a little bit of trail running done with my marathon running friend Teagan Miller. It's hard to elaborate in words about what the photos convey already. It might even make running fun for those that find it to be torture. This past weekend I got the pleasure to check out a new scene for me--BMX.

It had all the happenings of being a miniature Skatopia or something out of a mids punk inspired movie. My background as a mountain biker proved to be worthless on tight-transitioned dirt jumps, and I've got the bruises to show it. But hey, can you really shoot anything without doing it? I know this is a short post for now, but keep an eye out for some big stuff coming out later this month, including a move to California, a huge new client, and a lot of motion work!

If you told me a year ago that I'd be standing in an elevator with a soon-to-be married bride and her entourage of bridesmaids at any point in my life, I would've laughed. Even if you just told me a year ago I was shooting a wedding, I would've chuckled. Actually, my friends still are. But last Saturday I broke the ice with wedding photography while working with the wonderful Sarah Whitmeyer , and you know Granted, everything went well. The weather was great, the wedding party participants were awesome, and everything fell into place logistically.

While it's a total change of pace from hanging off of a cliff shooting a waterfall, it was enjoyable, and perhaps brought me back to my Old South roots of formal wear. This past week has been full of a more normal schedule of shooting with some guys firing it up kayaking, and with another front moving in currently, good things will be happening in the High Country. I'll be putting a few teaser shots up on the new Facebook Page , which I've decided to go ahead and set up. Check it out and let me know what you think! It's amazing what can happen in two months, despite the lack of blogging and updates being sent out to the wild world of Wordpress.

Although I haven't been posting, it is definitely a sign of me being busy with work, adventures, and photographing, not the lack thereof. Showing my blog to a curious friend this evening, I was bewildered that I hadn't posted in nearly two months. So here's an unorganized, Faulkner-style snapshot of the past 56 days. Early in the leave of absence, I took a pretty awesome adventure bumbling across New England.

It was my goal several years ago to knock out all four corners of the United States before leaving college--the Northeast was still luring me to check out the scene. Within 10 days I hit 11 states, roughly 2, miles, and got in some incredibly sketchy skiing. A long-standing tradition of New England skiers is to make the seasonal pilgrimage to Tuckerman's Ravine, a west coast style bowl on the face of Mt. The ice headwall builds throughout winter, and as it deteriorates, somewhat resembles skiable snow. A typical winter season would require skiers to wait until Memorial Day weekend to fire it up off the cornice, but due to the abnormally warm winter and even warmer spring, Tuck's was good to climb and send in mid-March.

We started the climb with 65 degree blue skies, and as I topped out the climb, it was near 35 and raining with a solid wind. After returning from the ever long journey, photo work seemed to flow as well as all the rivers around here, which posed a beautifully busy month. While most of the publications haven't been printed yet, one of my proudest has been. I was fortunate enough to work for The Seattle Times, a paper I've had a crush on for years. I was brought in to shoot a story about McFarland, a small specialty non-fiction book publisher located in the tiny town of Jefferson, NC, just down the hill from us.

I was thrilled to see the great designers at The Seattle Times gave it quite a bit of play in print! I'll have to say that this has to be one of my favorite clips to date. McFarland is a small publisher in the grand scheme, but houses roughly 50 employees in their converted ranch style home in Jefferson. I was amazed to see the mass quantity of titles that are constantly being pushed through their system--most revolving around baseball, chess, and scholarly film.

The vibrant and happy atmosphere was even a pleasure to shoot in, with all of the walls adorned with local and folk art, while the workplace buzzed with friendly energy. I was excited to learn, yet jealous, that the reason the assignment time moved back was to ensure there was enough time for a few employees to get back from playing disc golf down the road. After nearly 40 years of being in business, Amazon is trying to anonymously demand a higher discount, which could cripple McFarland's business. Check out the beautifully crafted article by Amy Martinez here , which is part two of four regarding Amazon's questionable tactics.

Between the assignment work, the April showers in the Southeast has brought happy boaters. Not only have the natural flows procured some great paddling, the scheduled annual releases of the Cheoah and Tallulah have made for some great road trips. It's been pretty photogenic time, but I've been stepping up my paddling-- somewhat in preparation for my next move in life which will be taking me to the Sierras in California.

More on that to come, but exciting things are in the making. For now though, the great road trips to the Smokies will have to suffice Over the past year I've become quite jaded on Boone from time to time. It's easy to get stuck in a rut here; being a small town with limited social circles, Boone can become a little monotonous. But Friday afternoon while Mike Holley was setting up his high line above Hebron Rock Colony, a Appalachian favorite outdoor chill spot, I had a rejuvenated sense of love for the area.

Hebron already is a beautiful place, but just knowing that this is what my buddies do on a Friday afternoon after they get out of class is powerful. Years ago when I met Mike for the first time, he instantly was put on my short list of people to photograph after hearing about his adventures. He is constantly bouncing around the world going on climbing and surfing adventures, and is truly inspirational.

I'm glad we finally got together to shoot some of his athleticism. Maybe it's just another tease of a cold front bringing an all too familiar "arctic blast". Our weather systems seem to be stuck in a rut, where anywhere between 1"-4" of rain will drop over the area in about 24 hours leading to some great kayaking followed by a short, intense blast of cold air. After two or three days of cold, the system mellows out, and repeats itself. This has led to an outstanding winter kayaking season, but a horrible and inconsistent ski season, leaving the area recreationally and economically crippled.

However after a few inches of fresh snow and a few inches of fresh gun snow, a thin facade was laid upon the area resorts. It couldn't have come at a better time as they gear up for MLK weekend. This past week I had the pleasure of working with Susan Walter Sink of Tarheel Foodie in Durham at The Cookery , a community kitchen that caters to food truck operators and other cooks in the area. Susan runs a very interesting business, that teaches and produces food that has been grown both organically and locally.

Susan works with several farms throughout North Carolina to provide her clients with the freshest ingredients year around. She will shop for a large amount of a seasonal vegetable, for example, and purchase and store enough to serve her business's needs for the year. It's definitely a unique process. So in my best attempts to imitate Susan's wonderful cooking, I attempted to roast some fall veggies this evening only to find a broken oven.

The garden, to be called the Steel Valley Food Project, would allow vegetables to be grown year-round, even in winter, Mr. The produce will be sold to the Vo JUL 1 veterans bike their way to Georgetown D. To thousands of bicycle and hiking tourists each year the brid Tory Parrish, a staff writer for Upgruv. All are welcome to attend the Groundbreaking Ceremony for the Conococheague Aqueduct Restoration on May 5th, at APR 14 "There is something incredibly thrilling about using a bicycle to explore DC Cycling Concierge Written by: Samuel Cawkell For everyone traveling to or from the nations capital, and traveling by bicycle, Momentum Mag's Samuel Cawkell cau Feldmark succeeds Steve Miller, who will remain with the organ APR 6 Video coverage: The tunnel and boardwalk area will The project will involve assessing, removing or "scaling" loose and unsta FEB 14 10 Rail-Trails That Helped Build the Movement Let me start by writing that, emphatically, there was no way to cover in this post every trail that was influential in the development of the 22, miles of rail-trails we know and love today.

Photo by Cleo Fogal. Click here to read the full story Click here to read the Press Re SEP 20 Pedal power: Groups look to build on millions of dollars that bike trails bring Members of environmental groups, nonprofits and state agencies, among others, gathered Tuesday at the Morguen Toole Company bed-and-breakfast in Meyersdale to learn how to support trail development SEP 19 Allegheny County begins process to reopen Hot Metal Bridge between Swissvale and Munhall The project also could include adding cantilevered panels to the bridge to provide trail access for bikes and pedestrians between the old mill site and the Great Allegheny Passage along the South S Kimberly Kinchen, business network writer.

He runs away to Grand Rapids, searching for the man he believes might be his father, jazz musician Herman E. Along the way Bud has all sorts of exciting adventures, narrated in his own authentic and often hilarious voice. Calloway is less than thrilled to meet Bud, but the other members of his band make Bud feel at home. He leaves for Flint hoping to find another job, leaving his wife, son Jimmy, and daughter Deza 12 behind. Deza and her mother find a new home and cling to the hope that they will find her father.

Deza makes an appearance as a minor character in Bud, Not Buddy. First known as Beetle, since she was found living in a dung heap, the girl struggles to learn the skills of her new profession. As she grows in knowledge and self-confidence, the girl finally respects herself enough to choose a real name: Running away from the inn, Will sets out on the open road, trying to outsmart the thieves, tricksters, and con artists, and repeatedly being taken advantage of. Will finally ends up with Master Tidball and his caravan of oddities, befriending Grace, a girl billed as a monster because of the silky hair growing on her face.

Elizabethan England comes to vivid life in this lively and amusing tale. Classic tales like Cinderella , Snow White , Sleeping Beauty , and Hansel and Gretel , have a more modern feel while brief introductions describe the themes, symbolism, and contemporary relevance of the stories. This beautiful book will appeal to readers of all ages.

Luckily Amber is up to the task of negotiating between her parents and finding just the right wedding location that both Mom and Max will love.

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She hears them when she wakes up in the morning, she watches them feed on her way to school, and she observes them through her window. Her enthusiastic commentary presents both accurate factual information and her pleasure in their personalities. Beautiful watercolor illustrations capture the sleek beauty of these wild neighbors. Lester finds the cafeteria far too loud, is overwhelmed by the number of kids, and is targeted by a bully.

But he works to make a friend, enters the science fair, and even joins a kickball game. Opening a letter addressed to his mother, Lester learns that he has been diagnosed with "autism spectrum disorder" and works to understand what that means. The Cheshire Cheese Cat: When given the job of mouser, Skilley strikes a bargain with Pip, the lead mouse: Skilley will protect the mice if they supply him with the tasty Cheshire cheese produced by the inn.

The unlikely pair work together to restore Maldwyn, a wounded raven, to his rightful place serving Queen Victoria in The Tower. This delightful book is beautifully illustrated. Plants, animals, and other organisms are organized by the alphabet in this beautifully illustrated book full of interesting factual information.

The Cats of Tanglewood Forest by Charles de Lint, Charles Vess Ages 8—12 Lillian Kindred, an orphan living with her beloved aunt, spends her days exploring Tanglewood Forest, befriending the feral cats and imagining how wonderful it would be if the forest were full of fairies. One day Lillian is bitten by a snake, and the magical cats turn her into a kitten to save her life. Now Lillian must journey through the forest to negotiate with Old Mother Possum to restore the balance. Fictional characters supplement the recollections of actual survivors, presented in the pages of a fictional magazine.

Period photographs add to the dramatic effect. How Mirka Got Her Sword by Barry Deutsch Ages 8—12 Mirka 11 wants to be a dragon-slayer, but the entire population of her small Orthodox Jewish community opposes her, especially her brother, seven sisters, and stepmother. Gollie is small, rumpled, strong-willed, and down-to-earth. Like many best friends, the two squabble about just about anything in this early readers series debut.

Three connected stories present conflicts about appearance wild socks , personal boundaries a trek to the Andes , and pets jealousy. When a squirrel is swallowed whole by a Ulysses Super-Suction Multi-Terrain X vacuum cleaner, Flora rescues him and names him after the machine. This clever novel is a wonderful combination of realistic sadness and comedy. All he needs is a horse. When Leroy meets Maybelline, it is love at first sight, and Leroy is finally ready to ride into the sunset like the heros of his favorite Western movies. This Tales from Dekawoo Drive series opener features characters from other DiCamillo books, like the toast-loving pig Mercy.

She decides that if she can win the Little Miss Central Florida Tire competition and get her picture in the paper, her father will see it and come home. To win, Raymie has to learn to twirl a baton and to do good deeds. Her competition is Louisiana Elefante, a wispy orphan who claims to be the daughter of the famous Flying Elefantes, and Beverly Tapinski, a fierce girl who vows to sabotage the contest. Tragedies have influenced all three girls, and as the contest grows closer they gradually begin to trust and rely on each other.

Despereaux falls in love with the beautiful human Princess Pea and is banished to the dungeon. Chiaroscuro is a rat who hates the dark dungeon and longs to live in the light above. Miggery Sow is a peasant servant who dreams of wearing a princess crown herself. These four characters interact in unexpected ways in this delightful and suspenseful fairy tale. The multi-ethnic children declare that they would take care of the important things first, like making sure that everyone has enough food and a safe place to live, stressing that friendship, kindness, and generosity would be valued more than wealth if they ran the world.

They re-named themselves after the winning lottery ticket that made their dream of having a family come true, and have seven home-schooled children of various ages, races, and talents. They live unconventionally and happily in their room Toronto mansion until the estranged father of one of the parents arrives for an indefinite stay. The personality of the stubborn and conservative grandfather quickly dubbed Grumps is especially hard on Sumac 9 , who has been assigned as his personal guide. This funny story of adjusting to new situations is a winner. While waiting in a long line, a stranger gives them a free ticket and Salim boards the ride.

When his pod arrives back in half an hour, Salim is missing. Ted and Kat overcome their usual sibling friction to work together to solve the mystery. Finally she walks away from their taunts into an overgrown lot where she is bitten by a fox and meets Anders and his father, who is suffering from the effects of serving in the Iraq war.

On the way home from school she meets Tansey, a mysterious young woman who seems familiar though she is dressed in old-fashioned clothes. Tansey has come to help her daughter say good-bye and guide her safely out of this world. The comforting ghost helps Emer, Mary, and her mother Scarlett overcome their fear of death. Stella by Starlight by Sharon M. But one night Stella and her little brother are out late at night and witness a meeting of the Klan, a signal of trouble to come to the black community of Bumblebee.

Stella envies the fine school buildings for the white children and dreams of becoming a writer. Her father is equally determined to vote. Fable Comics edited by Chris Duffy Ages 6—12 Twenty-eight fables are retold by 26 talented graphic artists in comic format. Many of the fables are classics from Aesop, but some are more obscure.

Though based on the originals, each enjoys artistic freedom as long as there is a moral at the end. Classic Tales Told by Extraordinary Cartoonists edited by Chris Duffy Ages 6—12 Seventeen classic fairy tales are adapted and illustrated in comics format by seventeen different cartoonists. But eating all the chocolate in the refrigerator gets Dessert into trouble at home. Her teacher encourages Dessert to find her own way to make amends.

The humorous black and white illustrations add to the fun of this book. Beautiful melding of poetry, narration, and art bring the love of music to life. At first Carol avoids the prickly grandfather she never met, but his questions about why she chose to abandon her real name Carolina for the Anglicized Carol makes her reflect on her heritage.

Notes from a Colorful Life by Lois Ehlert Ages 5—10 Lois Ehlert always knew she was an artist and was encouraged by her parents to make things with leftover scraps of fabric and buttons. Art school gave her the skills to create picture books. This fascinating autobiography helps readers to create projects of their own with directions for making a bird feeder and a cat mask, and makes it clear that creating collage pictures is an art form anyone can enjoy.

The Girl Who Wanted to Dance by Amy Ehrlich Ages 6—10 Clara, who longs to dance, lives with her sad father and loving grandmother who tells her that her absent mother also loved music and dance. This haunting fairy tale compassionately addresses the irresistible artistic urge and the pain of those left behind. Chirp is content in their cozy "nest" on the beach until her mother is diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, fading into a depressed shadow of her former vivacious self. Chirp finds comfort watching her beloved birds, and makes friends with Joey, a mysterious boy who lives across the street.

The two create their own private world and dream of escape to a world free of sick mothers and abusive fathers. His terrified parents buy him everything he wants, but each year Santa leaves him only a pair of socks. This darkly funny book is the perfect gift for all children whose favorite holiday is Halloween.

Forest World by Margarita Engle Ages 10—up Edver 11 has lived with his cryptozoologist mother in Miami for most of his life. Sent to visit his father, who patrols the forest for poachers, in the Cuban village of La Selva, Edver is surprised to discover that he has a sister his mother left behind when she fled to America ten years earlier. The two sibling have conflicted feelings about the mother that separated them and left Luza behind, but find a connection in their love for the natural world that both their parents protect.

The two come up with a plan to lure their mother back to Cuba, accidentally creating a dangerous situation they must work together to resolve. She hates recess with all the noise and confusion, and meets with her counselor, Mrs. Without him, Caitlin struggles more than ever. She bottle-fed the kitten and carried him in a pouch wile on photography expeditions.

Gradually she begins to reintroduce the kitten she names Moto to his natural world, fostering his survival instincts with the goal of returning him to the wild.

Tommy Penick Photo

Beautiful photographs illustrate this poignant story of wildlife rescue. One day while coming home from karate lessons, Mango finds a frightened Malayan tapir named Bambang stranded in the middle of the road. Mango takes Bambang home and feeds him banana pancakes. The two become fast friends and have wonderful adventures together.

This endearing early chapter book features humorous illustrations that support the text. She only has time for reading and facts and friends just get in the way. But Livingston Flott Fly , who lives next door, an exuberant singer-songwriter, breaks through her defenses. This engaging early chapter book featuring a friendship between opposites includes whimsical cartoon illustrations. The Sea of Trolls by Nancy Farmer Ages 9—up Jack 11 is a scrawny medieval Saxon boy who has never been much good at anything until the Bard of his village makes him an apprentice. Jack is slowly learning to call on magical powers when the Bard realizes that Viking berserkers are about to attack the village.

They raise a fog to hide the village, but Jack and his sister Lucy 5 are kidnapped by by Ivan One-Brow and his crew. This skillful amalgam of history, myth, and humor will appeal to fantasy lovers of all ages. When her behavior grows too bad to ignore, the family takes her to a monastery for an exorcism. Assisted by Pega, a slave girl, and Thorgil, the ex-berserker, Jack journeys through the lands of hobgoblins, kelpies, yarthkins, and elves in this thoroughly satisfying sequel to The Sea of Trolls.

Louis, Missouri, at the turn of the 20th century. A widow with four children to support, Fannie successfully united her fellow garment workers and fought for better wages and working conditions. She expanded her fight to workers in other industries and was killed by coal company guards on a picket line in Brackenridge, Pennsylvania in This accessible biography of a little-known union activist is a great introduction to the history of US labor rights. The Vengekeep Prophecies by Brian Farrey, Brett Helquist Ages 8—12 For generations the Grimjinx clan has produced the most talented thieves in Vengekeep, and Jaxter 12 is determined to uphold the family tradition.

Unfortunately his first attempt results in a house fire and lands his family in jail. His family has already put their biggest con ever in motion, replacing the tapestry that predicts the events of the coming year in Vengekeep with one that portrays the Grimjinx clan as heroes. The family discovers that the tapestry is enchanted, the disasters depicted are really happening, and the Grimjinxs must destroy the tapestry before it destroys Vengekeep. His best friend Libby is the only other person in their hometown of Jankburg, Pennsylvania, who even appreciates a good show tune.

An open casting call for E. Five, Six, Seven, Nate! Nate finds Broadway thrilling, but is terrified by the rehearsals. The child stars are unfriendly, and the understudies are worse. And worst of all Nate discovers that he is not the understudy for E. This funny coming-of-age story is the sequel to Better Nate than Ever.

Puddles disagree on everything. And for some reason the family attracts clouds. Told from both the human and canine perspectives, this lively and funny novel is full of quirky characters that enchant and amuse. She married a man who loved sailing as much as she did, and in served as navigator of their clipper ship The Flying Cloud on its 15, maiden voyage from New York City, around the tip of Cape Horn, and into San Francisco to deliver passengers and cargo to the Gold Rush.

This accessible biography presents a little-known female sailor at a time when only men were expected to take the helm. The Big Splash by Jack D. Ferraiolo Ages 10—14 Seventh grader Matt Stevens walks the mean hallways of Franklin Middle School in this clever and funny middle school noir.

Tough guy Vinny Biggio and his gang of trigger girls and boys armed with squirt guns rule the campus until Matt decides to figure out who took down Nikki Fingers in this exciting mystery. Sidekicks by Jack D. Though the superheroes they support are arch-enemies, the two sidekicks realize that they have much in common. When Scott realizes that Phantom Justice may not be the good guy he pretends to be, Scott is forced to make a choice about which side to support. Once Upon a Marigold by Jean Ferris Ages 9—12 Chris runs away from home when he is six and is raised in the forest by trolls.

After spotting Marigold in her castle through his telescope, he sends a p-mail pigeon mail and they become friends. When he learns her life may be in danger, he heads off to save her. This fast-paced fantasy, romance, comedy, and coming-of-age novel is a lot of fun. Twice Upon a Marigold by Jean Ferris Ages 9—12 This hilarious warping of fairy-tail conventions continues the story of Marigold, her new husband, her father the king, and her evil step-mother who is not as dead as they hoped. Miss Etta and Dr.

Claribel Cone were two unmarried sisters from Baltimore who fell in love with modern art in Paris. The two sisters, encouraged Leo Stein, supported beginning artists like Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso, bought their paintings, and brought them back to America. Without professional advice or counsel, trusting their eyes and instincts, the two sisters concentrate on the avant-garde.

This touching story is lavishly illustrated with reproductions of the Cone Collection and the colorful Matisse-inspired paintings by the author. The fourth of nine children in a Catholic family in a small town in Wisconsin, Mary Clare works hard to help her mother maintain some sort of order in their chaotic household, while writing letters to a Mother Superior, describing her daily life and hopes for the future. This painfully honest novel is both funny and hopeful.

Autumn is a talented wrestler but has a learning disability and struggles with reading. Adonis was born without legs but is a talented student. Autumn wants to get to know Adonis better, but he wants nothing to do with her. She insults them until they have no choice but to fight back, despite the fact that she owns her own electric chair and subscribes to Guard Dog Lovers Monthly.

The class full of underdogs unites under the leadership of Einstein, the class genius, who brings out the hidden talents of each student. Unfortunately Miss Breakbone, their terrifying teacher, also lands an extra spot. When Spider is arrested for stealing a necklace, it takes the combined efforts of the whole Dunderhead gang to identify the real thief and clear his name. This delightful darkly comic mystery is the sequel to The Dunderheads. First Light, First Life: A Worldwide Creation Story by Paul Fleischman, Julie Paschkis Ages 6—9 Elements from creation stories from around the world are woven together into one whole, highlighting their similar story lines.

Each page represents a different country or culture, celebrating both our commonalties and our differences. Poems for Two Voices by Paul Fleischman Newbery Medal Ages 8—up These poems about insects are designed to be read aloud by two voices, bring the words to life. Inside a cigar box she discovers a collection of old matchboxes, each holding a memory that the old man explains as she holds the treasures in her hand. An olive pit from his native Italy brings the memory of sucking on the pit when the family had no food, a fish bone tells the story of hard work in a cannery, and a piece of movable type represents his mastery of the written word.

Chaplin, the Funniest Man in the World by Sid Fleischman Ages 9—12 Photographs and newspaper clippings enliven this sympathetic biography of the great silent film star whose career ended with the introduction of sound to movies. When Brat decides to see life outside the castle, he forces Jemmy to come with him, and Jemmy is accused of kidnapping the prince. The boys are captured by Hold-Your-Nose Billy, a notorious outlaw, and Jemmy must use all his cleverness to keep them both alive in this funny and adventurous book.

Giant Squid by Candace Fleming, Eric Rohmann Ages 6—10 Little is known about the giant squid, which lives in the deepest darkest reaches of the ocean. Some giant squid are as large as a school bus, but they are rarely seen by people. The little we know about these huge cephalopods is what scientists have discovered from pieces of dead squids washed up on the shore or found by fishermen in the sea.

This fascinating book reveals what we know about giant squids piece by piece, beginning with a description of their foot-long tentacles, until the entire squid is revealed.

Books - Southern Highlands

On the Day I Died: Stories from the Grave by Candace Fleming Ages 11—14 Mike Kowalski 16 discovers an abandoned Chicago cemetery where nine teenaged ghosts tell him how they died from the s to the present. The tenth story describes the death of the narrator. A mother and her two children board the train in Omaha, leaving their old home behind to join Papa who has gone ahead to Sacramento, California to prepare their new home. Details about the construction of the railroad and the crew it takes to run the train provide background to the small family enjoying the cross-country journey.

Prehistoric Poems and Paintings by Douglas Florian Ages 6—up These humorous and witty poems and illustrations will appeal to dinosaur and word lovers alike. The facts are accurate, and the combination of poem and collage make them unforgettable. Baseball Poems by Douglas Florian Ages 6—9 Upbeat poems cover the defensive positions on the field as well as batting and running.

Exuberant illustrations exaggerate the physical motions of the baseball players as they stretch, swing, bend, and run, complementing the humor and the competitive spirit of the poems. When Green Becomes Tomatoes: Each poem begins with a date and reads like a diary entry, combining observations about each season with personal connections.

Dragonborn by Toby Forward Ages 8—12 Sam 12 is a half-trained wizard when his beloved master Flaxfield dies unexpectedly. With his dragon Starback, Sam sets out to find a way to continue his education. This adventure story told with a touch of humor is the first in a new series. The Charmed Children of Rookskill Castle by Janet Fox Ages 10—up Katherine 12 and her two younger siblings are sent away from London along with a group of classmates to keep them safe during the bombings of the s Blitz. Rookskill Castle, owned by a distant relative, is an ancient place in the Scottish highlands.

But the castle appears to be haunted, and by something far more dangerous than ghosts. Kat believes that Lady Eleanor is hiding a Nazi spy, but when her classmates begin disappearing one by one she fears that the danger may be even older and more terrifying. Ophelia and the Marvelous Boy by Karen Foxlee Ages 8—12 Ophelia Jane Worthington-Whittard 11 is visiting a strange city where it never stops snowing with her father and sister after her mother dies. The boy tells Ophelia that he was locked away by the evil Snow Queen, and recruits Ophelia to help him save the world from the Snow Queen.

This re-imagining of the tale of the Snow Queen is magical. Now ten, the refugee camp run by abusive guards is the only life Subhi has ever known. One day a girl named Jimmie appears at the bars of the camp, holding a notebook written by her dead mother. Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass: The Story Behind an American Friendship by Russell Freedman Ages 9—12 This fascinating photo biography tells the story of the friendship between two remarkable men.

Both Lincoln and Douglass were born poor, and rose to positions of influence through their intelligence and hard work. A brief history of the war that provided the background for their friendship is efficiently presented. Because of the strict exclusion laws aimed first at the Chinese, Angel Island was more a detention center than a welcome to the United States. This poignant history is interspersed with the despairing poems written on the barrack walls along with archival photographs and personal vignettes.

Frustrated with reprisals for attempting to register to vote, the black community of Selma began to protest. In January , Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In February, an an Alabama state trooper shot an unarmed demonstrator, inspiring a march from Selma to the state capital. On March 7th, law officers attacked the peaceful demonstrators. Broadcast around the world, this attack spurred the protesters to complete the march at any cost, finally completing the 54 mile walk on March 25th, arriving in Montgomery, Alabama, to the cheers of a crowd of 25, supporters. Lafayette and the American Revolution by Russell Freedman Ages 10—up In this accessible biography, we first meet the Marquis de Lafayette as a strong-willed year-old defying the King of France to run off and join the American Revolution.

Though young Lafayette had never set foot on a battlefield before, he soon earned the respect of the Americans because of his bravery and drive to succeed. A Photobiography by Russell Freedman Newbery Medal Ages 8—12 This comprehensive and accessible biography of Abraham Lincoln is enhanced by period photographs and drawings.

We Will Not Be Silent: But the enforced conformity of the Hitler Youth repelled Hans, and he joined a banned group that read forbidden books. Sophie read a book by a Jewish German poet and got into trouble for questioning the pervasive anti-Semitism. While attending school in Munich, the two and a few friends formed the White Rose, a campaign of active resistance to Hitler and the Nazis, distributing leaflets urging Germans to defy the Nazi government.

Hans and Sophie were eventually tried and executed by guillotine, but the message of the importance of defiant resistance in the face of overwhelming evil shines through. Luminous digital illustrations accompany this tale of grief, friendship, and the healing power of time. As she moves past walls covered with graffiti along the trash on the sidewalk, Sophie is trailed by a city predator, a frightening man in a dark coat.

Alternative endings raise questions about violence and safety. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman Ages 10—up When a murderer kills the rest of his family, the toddler escapes to the graveyard next door where the ghosts take him in and raise him as their own. The boy, called Bod short for Nobody grows up fairly normal despite his ghoulish guardians and the fact that the killer is still stalking him.

This gothic fantasy is downright terrifying at times. The Graveyard Book Graphic Novel: Volume 1 by Neil Gaiman, P. Russell created the look and layout for the graveyard world, and six artists Kevin Nowlan, P. Scott each contribute a chapter. Volume 2 , the second volume containing Chapter Six to the end, will be released later this fall.

The pitch black of the India ink drawings of terrifying landscapes mirror the dark version of the tale, with a scary witch and a mother who decides abandoning her children is the only way the parents can survive. Though not a true graphic novel, this illustrated story alternates illustrations and text.

Unnatural Creatures edited by Neil Gaiman, Maria Dahvana Headley Ages 13—up The 16 stories that comprise this anthology all feature fantastic creatures that exist only in the imaginations of the authors and readers.

Ranging from the whimsical to the terrifying, the collection includes classics from the late s through the present. Stealing Our Way Home by Cecilia Galante Ages 8—12 When their mother dies of cancer in the spring, Pippa 10 and Jack 12 have to also deal with the fact that their father falls apart, unable to work or take care of the house, though he does continue to love his children. Pippa stops speaking, and Jack begins to get into fights. School is starting again and Pippa has no idea how she is going to manage a class presentation on Spartan warriors and Jack becomes interested in the mysterious girl next door.

This emphatic novel is narrated by Pippa and Jack in alternating chapters. Two years later, along with Oliver, the boy who lives next door, and Adelaide, a French girl with a wooden leg, Archer is prepared to set off on a rescue mission. Stunning illustrations add dimension to this tale of friendship and adventure. But then his mother loans him out to a neighbor, and Jack finds himself typing obituaries of the strange and wonderful people who founded his small town. This funny and mysterious semi-autobiographic mix of fact and fiction is fast-paced and immensely entertaining. Spizz, the murder suspect from Dead End in Norvelt , is still at large when a new victim dies.

Miss Volker learns that her twin sister is dead, and the two head to Florida to bring the murderer to justice. While traveling, Jackie enjoys reading the Classic Illustrated comics his mother forbids, and Miss Volker draws hilarious parellels between their lives and the classic stories. This darkly funny and emotionally powerful novel is the finale to the groundbreaking five-book series that began with Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key.

Three events force her to face the loss of something she loves: Each character in this moving novel has a powerful voice in helping Yumi cope with change. Operation Bunny by Sally Gardner, David Roberts Ages 7—10 Emily Vole 9 inherits an abandoned shop and discovers a magical world she never knew existed. Harpella, a fairy-hating witch, is determined to turn the town into rabbits.

Emily joins Buster, a grumpy fairy detective, to save the day. There Will Be Bears by Ryan Gebhart Ages 10—up Tyson 13 is angry with his best friend who no longer has time for him now that he is on the football team and has a girlfriend. Ranier with his dog Beau. Alternate chapters are narrated by Mark, who struggles through the climb with the help of Beau, and by Jessie, who vacillates between keeping her promise and giving in. Jess has trouble accepting that she is always expected to be a good big sister, while Emma runs rampant over her life and privacy.

Vivid and frank poems present the pains and joys of having a little sister. But nothing exciting ever happens in her little town, and the only thing Annie knows about her father is that Gram said he was killed in a fight with a bad men who was sent to jail. Jeanne is a peasant girl who can see the future, William is of African heritage and has amazing strength, and Jacob is a Jewish boy with the power to heal the sick.

The travelers wonder if the three children are saints, frauds, or in league with the devil as they tell of their individual encounters with the trio.

Books by Christine Irving (Author of Magdalene A.D.)

A flatulent dragon adds to the mystery and fun. A Tale Dark and Grimm by Adam Gidwitz Ages 10—up In this irreverent and retelling of eight Grimm inspired fairy tales, Hansel and Gretel take their fate into their own capable hands, and walk out of their own story and into the other tales. Avoiding the modern trend of softening the original tales, these instead revel in bloodthirsty scariness, sure to delight readers ready for some wickedly funny terror. In a Glass Grimmly by Adam Gidwitz Ages 10—up Classic fairy tales are re-imagined in this collection, which is not for the faint hearted!

Along the way they encounter dark versions of Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty as well as other less well known fairy tales. Storyteller by Patricia Reilly Giff Ages 8—14 While staying with her aunt, Elizabeth finds a portrait of Eliza, known as Zee, an ancestor who looks just like her. George by Alex Gino Ages 8—12 George 10 is a boy in the eyes of everyone, but inside she knows she is really a girl. Before her mother and older brother come home each day, George comes her hair into bangs and calls herself Melissa, burying her secret after those few treasured moments.

His ten-year-old granddaughter Zelda continues the story, describing the heat wave and devastating bush fires. Each spread covers a different time period with illustrations, captions, and short blocks of text highlighting mass extinctions, wars, natural disasters, and cultural trends. The visual timeline is powerful and has plenty of details to spark interest. Sheridan, the owner of the theater. After Cat sees Mr. Sheridan hiding a valuable diamond, she and her friends decide to help safeguard the treasure.

Set in s London, England, this thrilling mystery will keep readers glued to the pages. When the lonely girl discovers a beautiful doll, Maria, hidden under the floorboards, she hides the doll from her godmother who prohibits play, beautiful things, and talk of love. This mysterious and creepy novel is enthralling. A Book About What Might Happen by Bruce Goldstone Ages 7—10 Beginning with the basic concepts of possibility, certainty, and impossibility, this accessible book explores probability.

Photographs and digital illustrations place the situations firmly in the real world. Clear scenarios and simple explanations make the often confusing topic of probability easy to grasp. At that first performance some audience members got up and left; the remainder were stunned into silence before breaking out into thunderous applause. The vivid illustrations highlight the theme of the power of art to fight against intolerance and hate. Herman and Rosie by Gus Gordon Ages 7—10 Herman is a crocodile who likes to play the oboe, and Rosie likes to sing jazz. Though the two live in adjacent buildings in New York City, they have never met.

Then Herman loses his job as a salesman, and the club Rosie sings in closes from poor attendance. Rosie is drawn to the music Herman plays to cheer himself up, and the two lonely artistic souls find happiness together. Absolutely Almost by Lisa Graff Ages 8—12 Albie 10 is a half-Korean only child with learning difficulties, especially with math and spelling.

The one bright spot is his new baby-sitter Calista, a college art student, who shares her love for art with him and appreciates him for who he is. Refugee by Alan Gratz Ages 9—12 Intertwined narratives tell the story of three children seeking asylum with their families.

Josef 12 lives in Nazi Germany. When his father returns from a concentration camp nearly destroyed, Josef must help his family board a ship for Cuba in to escape Germany. Isabel 11 lives in Cuba with her family. In they board a raft, hoping to find safety in America. Mamoud 12 leaves Syria with his family after a bomb destroys their apartment building, hoping to find a new life in Greece. Full of tragedy and resilience, these stories illuminate the desperate need of refugees around the world to find a place of security and safety.

The Nuts and Bolts of Your Insides by Dan Green, Edmond Davis Ages 7—up Using the metaphor of a factory, this entertaining look at the human body begins with the CEO in the brain issuing orders and then presents the different systems and organs working together. Jet-ski riders transport oxygenated blood from the heart, railcars take food through the digestive tract, and lab workers mix gastric juices in the stomach with a giant whisk.

Making Appalachian Spring by Jan Greenberg and Sandra Jordan, Brian Floca Ages 6—10 This inspired book manages to capture the excitement of dance, music, and stage design while celebrating the collaboration between dancer Martha Graham, composer Aaron Cop,and, and set designer Isamu Noguchi.