Multcolib My Librarian Diana: Read-alouds for older children

Fortunately, the Milk
Fortunately, the Milk By Gaiman, Neil Book - 2013 j GAIMAN 2013 Available in some locations

Annotation:This hilarious and exciting book features a brilliant, time-traveling scientist who is also a stegosaurus, pirates, vampires, a volcano, snot-like green aliens with a penchant for redecorating new planets, and two innocent children who are in desperate need of something to pour over their cereal at breakfast-time.

The True Meaning of Smekday
The True Meaning of Smekday By Rex, Adam Book - 2007 j REX Available in some locations

Annotation:In the chaotic turmoil that follows the Boov invasion of Earth, eleven-year-old Gratuity Tucci finds herself driving her mother's car to Florida, where all of the humans are being relocated, with her cat and a renegade extraterrestrial named J. Lo as her copilots.

Flora & Ulysses
Flora & Ulysses The Illuminated Adventures By DiCamillo, Kate Book - 2013 j DICAMILLO 2013 Available in some locations Holds: 18 on 45 copies

Annotation:Rescuing a squirrel after an accident involving a vacuum cleaner, comic-reading cynic Flora Belle Buckman is astonished when the squirrel, Ulysses, demonstrates astonishing powers of strength and flight after being revived.

The One and Only Ivan
The One and Only Ivan By Applegate, Katherine Book - 2012 j APPLEGATE 2012 Available in some locations Holds: 5 on 65 copies

Annotation:When Ivan, a gorilla who has lived for years in a down-and-out circus-themed mall, meets Ruby, a baby elephant that has been added to the mall, he decides that he must find her a better life.

The Graveyard Book
The Graveyard Book By Gaiman, Neil Book - 2008 j GAIMAN 2008 Available in some locations

Annotation:After some scary events rob him of his family, a toddler wanders into a graveyard where the ghosts and other supernatural residents agree to raise him as one of their own.

Liar & Spy
Liar & Spy By Stead, Rebecca Book - 2012 j STEAD 2012 Available in some locations

Annotation:Seventh-grader Georges adjusts to moving from a house to an apartment, his father's efforts to start a new business, his mother's extra shifts as a nurse, being picked on at school, and Safer, a boy who wants his help spying on another resident of their building.

Holes By Sachar, Louis, 1954- Book - 2008 y SACHAR 2008 Available in some locations

Annotation:As further evidence of his family's bad fortune which they attribute to a curse on a distant relative, Stanley Yelnats is sent to a hellish correctional camp in the Texas desert where he finds his first real friend, a treasure, and a new sense of himself.

The Phantom Tollbooth
The Phantom Tollbooth By Juster, Norton Book - 2011 j JUSTER 2011 Available in some locations

Annotation:Milo, a young boy with little interest in anything, takes a trip through the Phantom Tollbooth to the Lands Beyond where he meets an enchanting cast of characters who teach him the importance of words, numbers, ideas, creativity, and enthusiasm for life.

Walk Two Moons
Walk Two Moons By Creech, Sharon Book - 1994 j CREECH Available in some locations Holds: 2 on 24 copies

Annotation:After her mother leaves home suddenly, thirteen-year-old Sal and her grandparents take a car trip retracing her mother's route. Along the way, Sal recounts the story of her friend Phoebe, whose mother also left.

Wonder By Palacio, R. J. Book - 2012 j PALACIO 2012 All copies in use Availability details Holds: 5 on 45 copies

Annotation:Ten-year-old Auggie Pullman, who was born with extreme facial abnormalities and was not expected to survive, goes from being home-schooled to entering fifth grade at a private middle school in Manhattan, which entails enduring the taunting and fear of his classmates as he struggles to be seen as just another student.

The Mysterious Benedict Society
The Mysterious Benedict Society By Stewart, Trenton Lee Book - 2007 j STEWART Available in some locations

Annotation:After passing a series of mind-bending tests, four children are selected for a secret mission that requires them to go undercover at the Learning Institute for the Very Enlightened, where the only rule is that there are no rules.

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As part of my effort to get parents to keep reading to kids who are perfectly able to read to themselves, I present this list. A lot of these books are funny and will grab the 8-11 year-olds, and they are also books with soul. Note that almost all of them are available in some format of audio book, which makes them wonderful choices for family listening on road trips!