Book of the Day Archive

June 13, 2019

I stood before our family altar. It was dawn. No one else in the apartment was awake.

Topics: Novel, Friends or Not?, Real Life Fiction, Girls, Latin / Caribbean
Grades: 4, 5

June 12, 2019

I’m alive today because I was grounded. Maybe that sounds odd to you, but it’s true.

Topics: Novel, Adventure, Family, Humor, Mystery, Real Life Fiction, Scary Stuff, Girls
Grades: 5, 6, 7

June 7, 2019

A squat gray building of only thirty-four stories. Over the entrance, the words, CENTRAL LONDON HATCHERY AND CONDITIONING CENTRE, and, in a shield, the World State’s motto, COMMUNITY, IDENTITY, STABILITY.

Topics: Classics, Novel, Science Fiction/Dystopia
Grades: 10, 11, 12

June 6, 2019

124 was spiteful. Full of a baby’s venom. The women in the house knew it and so did the children.

Topics: Classics, Novel, Family, Loss, Real Life Fiction, Scary Stuff, African American, American Experience
Grades: College Plus

May 30, 2019

At only eleven years of age, I was a cyber ho. Looking back, I’m embarassed. For me. For my parents. But oddly enough, my cyber social debauchery is indirectly correlated with my current status as a so-called internet pioneer.

Topics: Memoir, Nonfiction, Arts and Creativity, Friends or Not?, Humor, Girls, African American, American Experience
Grades: 11, 12, College Plus

May 31, 2019

Damn this writing. I’d rather sleep. God how I’d love to sleep. But I can’t.

Topics: Novel, Coming of Age, Love, Science Fiction/Dystopia, War and Politics, Girls
Grades: 7, 8, 9

May 29, 2019

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way – in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.

Topics: Classics, Novel, Love, Real Life Fiction, War and Politics, Europe, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 10, 11, 12

May 24, 2019

First time I saw her was in the mirror on my locker door. I’d kicked my swim gear onto the bottom shelf and was reaching to the top for my calc book when she opened her locker across the hall. She had a streaked blond ponytail dangling out the back of her baseball cap…. We slammed our lockers in unison and turned. Her eyes met mine. “Hi,” she said, smiling. My stomach fluttered. “Hi,” I answered automatically. She was new. Had to be. I would’ve noticed her. She sauntered away, but not before I caught a glimpse of her T-shirt. It said: IMRU? Am I what?

Topics: Novel, Coming of Age, Humor, Love, Real Life Fiction, Girls, LGBTQ, American Experience
Grades: 8, 9, 10

May 23, 2019

“Gilly,” said Miss Ellis with a shake of her long blonde hair toward the passenger in the back seat. “I need to feel that you are willing to make some effort.”

Topics: Novel, Friends or Not?, Family, Real Life Fiction, Girls, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 4, 5

May 22, 2019

I first met Dean not long after my wife and I split up. I had just gotten over a serious illness I won’t bother to talk about, except that it had something to do with the miserably weary split-up and my feeling that everything was dead.

Topics: Classics, Novel, Adventure, Arts and Creativity, Real Life Fiction, Boys, American Experience
Grades: 11, 12, College Plus

May 17, 2019

When he woke in the woods in the dark and the cold of night, he’d reach out to touch the child sleeping next to him. Nights dark beyond darkness and the days more gray each one than what had gone before. Like the onset of some cold glaucoma dimming away the world.

Topics: Classics, Adventure, Family, Real Life Fiction, Scary Stuff, Science Fiction/Dystopia, Boys, American Experience
Grades: 11, 12, College Plus

May 16, 2019

Oklahoma, 1922: That summer a water diviner named Michael Horse forecast a two week dry spell. Until then, Horse’s predictions were known to be reliable, and since it was a scorching hot summer, a good number of Indians moved their beds outdoors in hopes a chance breeze would pass over and provide relief from the hot nights.

Topics: Novel, Historical, Mystery, American Experience, Native Peoples
Grades: 8, 9, 10

May 15, 2019

I was supposed to play the piano. A piano is a beautiful instrument. Elegant. Dignified. People wear ball gowns and tuxedos to hear the piano.

Topics: Novel, Family, Humor, Real Life Fiction, Girls
Grades: 5, 6

May 10, 2019

Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much. They were the last people you would expect to be involved in anything strange or mysterious, because they just didn’t hold with such nonsense.

Topics: Classics, Novel, Adventure, Coming of Age, Family, Fantasy / Magic / Myth, Boys
Grades: 6, 7, 8, 9

May 9, 2019

I wondered about you when you told me never to leave a box of wooden, strike-anywhere matches out around the house because the mice might get into them and start a fire.

Topics: Poetry, American Experience
Grades: 9, 10, 11, 12

May 8, 2019

My name is Matt Pin, and her name, I remember, is Phang My. His name I will never say, though forever I carry his blood in my blood, forever his bones stretch in my bones.

Topics: Novel, Poetry, Family, Historical, Real Life Fiction, War and Politics, American Experience, Asian
Grades: 6, 7, 8

May 3, 2019

Good thing the plane had seatbelts and we’d been strapped in tight before takeoff. Without them, that last jolt would have been enough to throw Vonetta into orbit and Fern across the aisle.

Topics: Novel, Coming of Age, Family, Historical, Real Life Fiction, Girls, African American, American Experience
Grades: 6

May 2, 2019

It unrolled slowly, forced to show its colors, curling and snapping back whenever one of us turned loose. The whole land was very tense until we put our four steins on its corners and laid the river out to run for us through the mountains 150 miles north. Lewis’ hand took a pencil and marked out a small strong X in a place where some of the green bled away and the paper changed with high ground, and began to work downstream, northeast to southwest through the printed woods.

Topics: Classics, Novel, Adventure, Ecology and Nature, Real Life Fiction, Sports, Boys, American Experience
Grades: College Plus

May 1, 2019

By 4:30 in the afternoon, the first mad rush of after-school passengers has come and gone. What’s left are stragglers and stay-laters, swiping their bus passes as they climb onto the 57 bus and taking seats among the coming-home workers, the shoppers and errand-doers, the other students from high schools and middle schools across the city.

Topics: Nonfiction, Coming of Age, Boys, Girls, LGBTQ, African American, American Experience
Grades: 10, 11, 12

April 26, 2019

Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendía was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice.

Topics: Classics, Novel, Family, Fantasy / Magic / Myth, Love, Latin / Caribbean
Grades: 11, 12

April 25, 2019

“I remember this little place next to the bus station that sold the best hot dogs I ever ate,” said Charlie Epps, who was a child in the 1940’s in Windsor, North Carolina.

Topics: Nonfiction, Historical, Boys, Girls, African American, American Experience
Grades: 7, 8

April 24, 2019

There was a hand in the darkness, and it held a knife.

Topics: Novel, Adventure, Friends or Not?, Family, Fantasy / Magic / Myth, Humor, Mystery, Scary Stuff, Boys, Europe, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 5, 6

April 19, 2019

Arawak men and women, naked, tawny, and full of wonder, emerged from their villages onto the island’s beaches and swam out to get a closer look at the strange big boat. When Columbus and his sailors came ashore, carrying swords, speaking oddly, the Arawaks ran to greet them, brought them food, water, gifts.

Topics: Nonfiction, Historical, Girls, African American, American Experience
Grades: 11, 12

April 18, 2019

It was a lovely funeral for Fluffy, the best pet I ever had. I was pleased by the turnout at the mansion.

Topics: Novel, Adventure, Fantasy / Magic / Myth, Humor, Boys, Girls, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 5, 6

April 17, 2019

Here we go again. We were all just standing in line waiting for breakfast when one of the caseworkers came in and tap tap tapped down the line. Uh oh, this meant bad news, either they’d found a foster home for somebody, or somebody was about to get paddled.

Topics: Novel, Historical, Boys, Girls, African American
Grades: 4, 5

April 12, 2019

The remote village waits for a story to be told. News travels slowly in this corner of Kenya.

Topics: Nonfiction, Picture Storybook, Ecology and Nature, Historical, Boys, Girls, Africa, Native Peoples
Grades: 4, 5

April 11, 2019

My name is Andrew Zansky. I’m fifteen years old, and I weigh 307 pounds.

Topics: Novel, Coming of Age, Family, Love, Real Life Fiction, Sports, Boys
Grades: 8, 9, 10, 11

April 10, 2019

It was a pleasure to burn.

Topics: Classics, Novel, Adventure, Science Fiction/Dystopia, No Controversial Bits
Grades: 10, 11, 12

April 5, 2019

Mama’s gone back to Phoenix tonight. She’s talking in her sleep, so I know exactly what the nightmare is about.

Topics: Novel, Coming of Age, Family, Real Life Fiction, Girls, LGBTQ
Grades: 6, 7, 8

April 4, 2019

I remember falling. At least I think I do. Or maybe that’s just because I know I fell. The grass is far away–until it isn’t anymore. Somebody screams–wait, it’s me. 

Topics: Novel, Humor, Mystery, Real Life Fiction, Boys
Grades: 5