Boise Public Library
“Can We Help?” by George Ancona.
Juvenile nonfiction. Kids of all ages can find opportunities to help out in their communities. From helping mentor younger kids with reading, doing cleanup in recreational areas or helping with food banks, this book is filled with ideas for ways kids can help give back to their neighborhoods and communities.
Meridian Public Library
“Cut Off” by Jamie Bastedo.
Teen fiction. Fourteen-year-old Indio McCracken enjoys instant stardom after his father posts a video of him playing guitar. Things quickly go sour when Indio’s fame fuels his father’s dream of raising the world’s next Segovia. Robbed of a normal childhood, Indio desperately seeks escape online, creating an obsession that almost kills him. Facing school expulsion, Indio is shipped off to an addictions rehab center where the adventure of a lifetime awaits him.
Eagle Public Library
“The Last Execution” by Jesper Wung-Sung.
Young adult fiction. Told from alternating perspectives of 11 bystanders — one per hour — as the clock ticks ever closer to the moment when the boy must face his fate. Niels Nielson, a young peasant, was sentenced to death by beheading on the dubious charges of arson and murder. Does he have the right to live despite what he is accused of? That is the question the townsfolk ask as the countdown begins. Based on the true story of the last execution in Denmark’s history, this mesmerizing novel asks a question that plagues a small Danish town: Who determines who has the right to live or die?
“The Sound of Gravel” by Ruth Wariner.
Adult memoir. The 39th of her father’s 41 children, Ruth is raised on a farm in the hills of Mexico, where polygamy is practiced without fear of legal persecution. There, Ruth’s family lives in a home without indoor plumbing or electricity and attends a church where preachers teach that God will punish the wicked by destroying the world. In need of government assistance and supplemental income, Ruth and her siblings are carted back and forth between Mexico and the United States, where her mother collects welfare and her father works a variety of odd jobs. Ruth comes to love the time she spends in the states, realizing that perhaps the belief system into which she was born is not the one for her. As she enters her teen years, she becomes a victim of abuse in a community in which opposition toward men is tantamount to arguing with God. Finally, and only after devastating tragedy, Ruth finds an opportunity to escape. Recounted from the innocent and hopeful perspective of a child, “The Sound of Gravel” is the remarkable true story of a girl forced to define a place for herself within a community of misguided believers.
Ada Community Library
“Your Alien” by Tammi Sauer, illustrated by Goro Fujita.
Juvenile picture book. First contact quickly becomes close friendship when a juvenile alien crash lands and you, in the guise of a little boy, bring him home. Your classmates will think him awesome, while your parents and your teacher will either be oblivious or have serious doubts about their eyesight. By the end of a wonderful first day together, though, your alien will begin to miss home and you will know what to do. This is a simple, touching story of interplanetary friendship brought to life by Fujita’s mastery of light. Best read to or by ages 3-5.
Garden City Library
“Heirs and Assigns” by Marjorie Eccles.
Adult fiction. The premier novel in a new mystery series finds detective Herbert Reardon called away from his home in the city to investigate the mysterious death of a wealthy landowner by the Welsh border. What he discovers will uncover secrets some would like to remain buried. This was a charming post-World War I mystery that will keep readers guessing until the very end.
Nampa Public Library
“Cricket Song” by Anne Hunter.
Juvenile fiction. A poignant and beautiful bedtime book, “Cricket Song” connects two children on different continents through the evocation of sound and smell. Readers will love identifying various creatures portrayed in the book and watching what they are doing as the two children begin to fall to sleep in their beds on seemingly opposite sides of the world. While differences between cultures may be obvious, ultimately, this lovely story of sleep is a tale about interconnection.