A Medal for Molly. O.

INFO:  Weeks, Jan.  A Medal for Molly.  O.  2001

DESC: Molly and her father are traveling home on a wet night when their car skids off the dirt road and crashes into a tree, trapping her father’s legs. Molly finds a torch and walks for help.

TAGS:  Highland Park, O, Courage, Fear, Bravery, level O, highland park-O, fiction, chapter, oscar

Stone Fox. P.

INFO: Gardiner, John Reynolds. Stone Fox. P. 1980.

DESC: A classic about the love of animal companionship, family, and perseverance. Little Willy enters his beloved dog, Searchlight, into an Iditarod-like dog race to try to win money to save the farm of his ailing grandfather, with whom he lives. But, as luck would have it, Little Willy and Searchlight are racing against Stone Fox, the toughest and best – and most legendary – dogsled racer around. What happens next tugs the heartstrings, and holds a host of lessons for young readers about balancing the things that matter in the most difficult times.

TAGS: family, grandpa, dogs, pets, farms, wyoming, dog racing, dogsled racing, adventure, peril, trial, bravery, overcoming hardship, teamwork, friendship, fiction, chapter, P

Shiloh. R.

INFO: Naylor, Phyllis Reynolds. Shiloh. R. 1991.

DESC: This heart-wrenching story is a hard-hitting tale of a young boy named Marty who falls in love with an abused, neglected beagle – who just so happens to belong to Judd Travers. It’s a story of compassion, bravery, and, ultimately, standing up for what you believe in, even if nobody else does. More than that, it’s an evocative and complex portrait of life in an impoverished mountain town in West Virginia, and the ties that hold the community together. Perfect for 3rd graders edging up into deeper and more mature reading material – and for anyone with a heart for animals! Written in West Virginia dialect — or the author’s approximation thereof.

TAGS: family, west virginia, dogs, animal abuse, bravery, courage, poverty, rural living, mountains, nature, determination, compassion, animal welfare, pets, chapter, fiction, R

Ramona Quimby, Age 8. O.

INFO: Cleary, Beverly. Ramona Quimby, Age 8. O. 1981.

DESC: Cheerful, spunky, off-beat Ramona is always a hit with our kids – she’s funny, funky, and Cleary writes her in an easy-to-identify-with, inimitable style that elementary schoolers will love. Here, Ramona bears the brunt of her great ‘responsibility’ as her mother takes on full-time work and her dad returns to college. This is a great, solid mid-level chapter book, and takes on all the big issues: school, friends, family, community, and the perils and joys of being young!

TAGS: ramona quimby, beverly cleary, family, siblings, 3rd grade, beginning of school, new school, moving, responsibility, bravery, courage, classics, chapter, fiction, O