New Books for 6th Graders

The Dogs of Winter by Bobbie Pyron

Reading Level: Grades 5 - 8

Truth can be much stranger than fiction and fiction based on truth can make a great story.  Inspired by the life of Ivan Mishukov, Ivan Andreovich is a five-year-old boy who was orphaned in post-Soviet Russia, left on the streets to fend for himself, and adopted by a pack of wild dogs.

Life for street children is a battle to survive.  Hunger, cold, roving gangs of both adults and older children make survival tenuous.  Ivan finds his place with a family of dogs.  Ivan and the dogs share what food they have and provide warmth and protection for each other.  But more than that, the dogs love Ivan as he loves them.   Ivan becomes more and more like his dog family.  While humans can be uncaring or cruel, it is the dogs who show the most "humanity."

Ultimately, Ivan Andreovich , like the real Ivan, is rescued.

 

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Other books by Bobbie Pyron

Joshua Dread by Lee Bacon

Reading Level: Grades 4-6

Starting a new school is never easy.  It is even harder when you have to remember your new alias and make sure you never even hint at the fact that your parents are supervillians intent on destroying the world.

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Books by Lee Bacon

Other villianous tales include:

Artemis Fowl by Eon Colfer

Evil Genius by Catherine Jinks anThe Cloak Society by Jeramy Kraatz

Cinder by Marissa Meyer

Reading Levels: Grades 6+

In a complicated post-WWIV world ravaged by a fatal, incurable disease, Earth is separated into independently ruled Commonwealths, completely separated from the Lunars, a somewhat new species spawned from previous moon colonization. 

Cinder is a second-class citizen at best. She's indentured to her step-mother, and a gifted mechanic, but a cyborg.  Over 36% robotic, Cinder relies on a robotic hand, foot, nervous system, and more - to stay alive. Despite this supposed (and mostly unknown) handicap, however, Cinder is the best mechanic in New Bejing, a reputation that brings the Royal Prince himself to her door with a broken android in need of quick - and quiet - repair.

When Cinder's younger step-sister Peony catches letumosis, the fatal disease that killed Cinder's father and ravaged Earth, everything changes. Furious, Cinder's step-mother sells her cyborg ward into voluntary testing for a letumosis cure - a grim fate, until Cinder's body rejects letumosis and it is discovered that she has a natural immunity. Dr. Erland, letumosis researcher in the royal palace, begins working with Cinder to develop a cure, but their testing reveals dangerous secrets about Cinder's past. In the meantime, Cinder's repairs on the Prince's android cause it to divulge another secret - relating to the relations between the Earth and the Lunars.

When the Emperor himself succumbs to letumosis, the Lunar Queen declares that she will visit the Earth herself to comfort the Prince during his time of mourning - but with recent information Cinder has learned from the Prince's android...  it is clear the Queen's motives are anything but comforting.

In a creative, complex sci-fi retelling of the classic Cinderella story with a hint of Anastasia, Meyer creates memorable characters while simultaneously posing difficult questions - what does it mean to be human? What is the ultimate sacrifice for the greater good? When is the sequel coming out?

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Three more books are planned in the series.

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