Book of the Day Archive

May 7, 2021

Eragon stared at the dark tower of stone wherein hid the monsters who had murdered his uncle, Garrow.

Topics: Novel, Adventure, Coming of Age, Fantasy / Magic / Myth, Boys, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 7, 8

May 6, 2021

1975: Year of the Cat. Today is Tet, the first day of the lunar calendar. Every Tet we eat sugary lotus seeds, and glutinous rice cakes. We wear all new clothes, even underneath.

Topics: Novel, Poetry, Adventure, Family Matters, Historical, Real Life Fiction, Girls, American Experience, Asian, Immigrants
Grades: 4, 5, 6

May 5, 2021

Boyah was a pirate. He was one of the “old boys,” an original pirate, quietly pursuing his trade in the waters of his coastal hometown of Eyl years before it galvanized the world’s imagination as an infamous pirate haven in mid-2008.

Topics: Nonfiction, Adventure, Historical, Boys, Africa
Grades: 11, 12, College Plus

April 30, 2021

Dewey Kerrigan sits on the concrete front steps of Mrs. Kovack’s house in St. Louis, waiting for her father. He is in Chicago–war work–and she has not seen him since the Fourth of July.

Topics: Novel, Historical, Real Life Fiction, Science and Tech, War, Girls, American Experience, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 6, 7

April 29, 2021

Ten years before Air Jordans, I learned to fly. It’s like the way brothers pimp-walk to a basketball hoop with a pumped-up ball and throw a few shots, hitting each one effortlessly. Like a car idling before a drag race, there is an invitation, perhaps even a threat, in the way their sneakers soft-shoe the pavement and the ball rolls around in their hands.

Topics: Biography, Memoir, Nonfiction, African American, American Experience
Grades: 9, 10, 11, 12

April 28, 2021

When I wrote the following pages, or rather the bulk of them, I lived alone, in the woods, a mile from any neighbor, in a house which I had built myself….

Topics: Classics, Memoir, Nonfiction, Change Your World, Ecology and Nature, American Experience, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 11, 12

April 23, 2021

Even if she hadn’t been the last person to walk through the turnstile at Warren Street tube station, Jack Barker would have noticed the tall, slender woman in the navy blue, thigh-length jacket with a matching pleated skirt short enough to reveal a well-turned ankle. She had what his old mother would have called “bearing.” 

Topics: Novel, Adventure, Coming of Age, Historical, Mystery, Real Life Fiction, Girls, Europe
Grades: 11, 12, College Plus

April 22, 2021

Dad says punk rock only comes in one volume: loud. 

Topics: Novel, Arts and Creativity, Family Matters, Real Life Fiction, Girls, Latinx / Caribbean
Grades: 5, 6

April 21, 2021

I have a secret. And everyone knows it. But no one talks about it, at least not out in the open. That makes it a very modern secret, like knowing your favorite celebrity has some weird eccentricity or other, or professional athletes do it for the money, or politicians don’t actually have your best interests at heart.

Topics: Novel, Coming of Age, Family Matters, Love, Real Life Fiction, Boys, LGBTQ+
Grades: 10, 11

April 16, 2021

Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.

Topics: Classics, Family Matters, Love, Real Life Fiction, Europe
Grades: 12, College Plus

April 15, 2021

The game is played with three people. A man… A woman… and an interrogator in a room apart from the other two. A room in a house? If you like.

Topics: Biography, Graphics / Comics, Nonfiction, Change Your World, Science and Tech, Boys, Europe, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 9, 10

April 14, 2021

I’m in the water. Only my eyes are visible, and I blow bubbles to ensure the rest of me stays submerged until the opportune time.

Topics: Novel, Family Matters, God and Religion, Real Life Fiction, Girls, Immigrants, Middle Eastern
Grades: 8, 9

April 9, 2021

I don’t know if what I remember is what happened or just how I imagine it happened now I’m old enough to tell stories. I’ve read about this thing called childhood amnesia. It means we can’t remember anything from when we were really small because before three years old we haven’t practised the skill of remembering enough to be able to do it very well. 

Topics: Novel, Family Matters, Real Life Fiction, Girls, Europe
Grades: 6, 7

April 8, 2021

Every September the great white sharks return to San Francisco. Their hunting grounds, the Farallon Islands, are just 30 miles from the city. While their 800,000 human neighbors dine on steak, salad, and sandwiches, the white sharks hunt for their favorite meal.

Topics: Nonfiction, Ecology and Nature, Science and Tech, Boys, Girls, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 5, 6, 7

April 7, 2021

The date was July 27, 1919, a day that would forever change the life of John Turner Harris and cause the whole city of Chicago to rethink where it had been and where it was headed. As is often the case just before catastrophe strikes, that Chicago summer Sunday morning was like any other, carrying no hint of the trouble ahead.

Topics: Nonfiction, Change Your World, Historical, Boys, African American, American Experience
Grades: 8, 9

April 3, 2021

Our hero was not one of those Dominican cats everybody’s always going on about—he wasn’t no home-runner hitter or fly bachetero, not a playboy with a million hots on his jock.

Topics: Classics, Novel, Family Matters, Historical, Humor, Loss, Love, Boys, African American, American Experience, Latinx / Caribbean
Grades: College Plus

April 2, 2021

Roy would not have noticed the strange boy if it weren’t for Dana Matherson, because Roy ordinarily didn’t look out the window of the school bus. He preferred to read comics and mystery books on the morning ride to Trace Middle. But on this day, a Monday (Roy would never forget), Dana Matherson grabbed Roy’s head from behind and pressed his thumbs into Roy’s temple, as if he were squeezing a soccer ball.

Topics: Classics, Novel, Adventure, Change Your World, Ecology and Nature, Humor, Mystery, Boys, Girls, American Experience, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 6, 7

April 1, 2021

Pallas sat sidesaddle on the kitchen counter, velvet ankle boots resting daintily in the deep porcelain sink. Pressing her nose against the dark kitchen window, she glared at the hulking cyclops creeping steadily toward Eris Gardens, its single working headlight illuminating the carriage house and steep gravel drive. 

Topics: Novel, Arts and Creativity, Family Matters, Fantasy / Magic / Myth, Friends or Not?, Loss, Girls, Latinx / Caribbean
Grades: 9, 10

March 26, 2021

At the top of the key, I’m MOVING & GROOVING, POPping and ROCKING–Why you BUMPING? Why you LOCKING? Man, take this THUMPING.

Topics: Novel, Poetry, Coming of Age, Family Matters, Sports, Boys, African American, American Experience
Grades: 6, 7, 8

March 25, 2021

In our family, there was no clear line between religion and fly fishing. We lived at the junction of great trout rivers in western Montana, and our father was a Presbyterian minister and a fly fisherman who tied his own flies and taught others. He told us about Christ’s disciples being fishermen, and we were left to assume, as my brother and I did, that all first-class fishermen on the Sea of Galilee were fly fishermen and that John, the favorite, was a dry-fly fisherman.

Topics: Classics, Ecology and Nature, Family Matters, Historical, Boys, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 11, 12, College Plus

March 24, 2021

Grace hadn’t really thought too much about homecoming. 

Topics: Classics, Novel, Coming of Age, Family Matters, Real Life Fiction, Boys, Girls, American Experience, Latinx / Caribbean
Grades: 8, 9, 10, 11

March 19, 2021

I had just come to accept that my life would be ordinary when extraordinary things began to happen.

Topics: Novel, Adventure, Coming of Age, Family Matters, Fantasy / Magic / Myth, Mystery, Boys, Europe
Grades: 8, 9

March 18, 2021

Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again.

Topics: Classics, Novel, Family Matters, Historical, Mystery, Real Life Fiction
Grades: 11, 12

March 17, 2021

On the morning I was scheduled to die, a large barefoot man with a bushy red beard waddled past my house. The thirty degree temperature didn’t seem to bother him, but he must have had a lousy breakfast because he let out a burp as loud as a tuba.

Topics: Novel, Adventure, Fantasy / Magic / Myth, Boys, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 6, 7

March 12, 2021

Finally, I am twelve. Old enough to wear a toob. As soon as I wake, Muma whispers a birthday wish. “Blessings for all the years to come, Amira.” My mother has been awake for hours, starting early with farm chores. On this birthday morning bright as the sun’s first yawn, ripened wheat sways.

Topics: Novel, Poetry, Family Matters, Real Life Fiction, Girls, Africa, Middle Eastern
Grades: 5, 6

March 11, 2021

The truth is, she was ornery and stubborn, wouldn’t listen to a n y b o d y, and selfish beyond selfish, and filthy, caked with mud and dust, and moody: you’d better watch it or she’d knock you flat. That’s Zora I’m talking about. Nobody wanted anything to do with her. Zora: that cow.

Topics: Poetry, Family Matters, Friends or Not?, Humor, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 4, 5

March 10, 2021

My name is Blaise Fortune and I am a citizen of the French Republic. It’s the pure and simple truth. I was almost twelve years old the day the customs officers found me in the back of the truck.

Topics: Novel, Coming of Age, Historical, Real Life Fiction, Boys, Europe, Immigrants
Grades: 8, 9, 10

March 5, 2021

Jose de la Caridad Mendez was the first Latino baseball legend ever. In his homeland of Cuba, they called him “El Diamante Negro,” The Black Diamond.

Topics: Biography, Nonfiction, Sports, Boys, Latinx / Caribbean, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 4, 5

March 4, 2021

This is how I feel every single day of my life, like I’m falling without a parachute.

Topics: Classics, Graphics / Comics, Arts and Creativity, Family Matters, Friends or Not?, Real Life Fiction, Boys, Asian
Grades: 5

March 3, 2021

His soldiers weren’t yet calling him the Lost Kauz behind his back, not when this began. The soldiers of his who would be injured were still perfectly healthy, and the soldiers of his who would die were still perfectly alive. 

Topics: Nonfiction, Change Your World, War, American Experience, Middle Eastern
Grades: 9, 10, 11, 12, College Plus