Annal: 2002 Young Reader’s Choice Award Junior Division

Results of the Young Reader’s Choice Award in the year 2002.

Book:Bud, Not Buddy

Bud, Not Buddy

Christopher Paul Curtis

It's 1936 Flint, Michigan. Times may be hard, and 10-year-old Bud may be a motherless boy, but Bud’s got a few things going for him: 1. He has his own suitcase full of special things; 2. He’s the author of "Bud Caldwell's Rules and Things for Having a Funner Life and Making a Better Liar Out of Yourself"; 3. His momma never told him who his father was, but she left a clue: posters of Herman E. Calloway and his band of renown, the Dusky Devastators of the Depression. Bud is sure those posters will lead him to his father. Once he decides to hit the road, nothing can stop him, not hunger, not fear, not would-be vampires, not even Herman E. Calloway himself.

Book:The Birchbark House

The Birchbark House

Louise Erdrich

Omakayas and her family live on the land her people call the Island of the Golden-breasted Woodpecker. Although the chimookoman (white people) claim more and more of their land, life continues much as it always has. Every summer they build a new birchbark house; every fall they go to ricing camp to harvest and feast; they move to the cedar log house before the first snows arrive, and celebrate the end of the long winter at maple sugaring camp. Then, one winter night, the satisfying rhythms of their life are shattered when a visitor comes to their lodge, bringing with him an invisible enemy that will change things forever.

Book:Bunnicula Strikes Again!

Bunnicula Strikes Again!

James Howe, Alan Daniel

“Let’s just say the matter is under control,” Chester slyly tells his pals Harold and Howie. But what on earth does he mean?

It seems that Bunnicula, the vampire rabbit, is back to his old ways—or so Chester thinks, having found pale vegetables drained of their juices scattered about the Monroe family kitchen. And now, once and for all, Chester is determined to save the world from this threat.

But why has Bunnicula—so frisky just a short time ago—been so listless and tired of late? Is this part of Chester’s scheme? Can Harold let Chester get away with hurting an innocent bunny, no matter what his harebrained suspicions are?

It is not long before the Monroes notice Bunnicula’s condition and rush him to the vet, and then the chase is on, ending up with a dramatic confrontation in a most unusual (and dangerous!) location.

Book:The Landry News

The Landry News

Andrew Clements

From the Editor’s Desk
A Question of Fairness
There has been no teaching so far this year in Mr. Larson’s classroom. There has been learning, but there has been no teaching. There is a teacher in the classroom, but he does not teach.

Cara Landry is a budding journalist. When she posts a scathing editorial about her burned-out teacher on the bulletin board one afternoon, everything changes. Prodded into action for the first time in years, Mr. Larson challenges his fifth-grade students to create a real newspaper. Soon The Landry News gets more attention than either Cara or her teacher bargained for, as the principal uses the paper to try to get Mr. Larson fired. While the whole town is swept up in a dramatic debate over The…[more]

Book:Our Only May Amelia

Our Only May Amelia

Jennifer L. Holm

She may be a miracle, but she’s no proper young lady!

It isn’t easy being a pioneer in the state of Washington in 1899, but it’s particularly hard when you are the only girl ever born in the new settlement. With seven older brothers and a love of adventure, May Amelia Jackson just can’t seem to abide her family’s insistence that she behave like a Proper Young Lady. Not when there’s fishing to be done, sheep to be herded, and real live murderers to be captured! May is sure she could manage better if only there were at least one other girl living along the banks of the Nasel River. And now that Mama’s going to have a baby, maybe there’s hope…

Book:Ramona's World

Ramona's World: Ramona takes on fourth grade!

Beverly Cleary

To the delight of Ramona Quimby readers everywhere, Newbery Medal-winning author Beverly Cleary has just made Ramona’s world a little bit bigger.

As she starts the fourth grade, Ramona believes that this year will be “the best year of her life, so far.” She can show off her calluses from swinging on the rings in the park; the boy she calls Yard Ape sits across the aisle from her; her teacher praises her writing; and she has a new baby sister, Roberta. But best of all, she has a new best friend, Daisy.

Little does Ramona know the challenges her fourth-grade year holds in store. Not only must she improve her rotten spelling, but she must also be a good role model for baby Roberta. And her mother wants her to spend more time with the awful Susan.

Life isn’t easy, especially when she is surrounded by perfect spellers and everyone praises her big sister, Beezus, for being responsible. Sometimes Ramona fails, often with hilarious results. But with the support of family and friends, she discovers something reassuring—that being imperfect can be perfectly fine.

Book:Tucket's Gold

Tucket's Gold: Book 4 of the Tucket Adventures

Gary Paulsen

Gary Paulsen’s popular Western saga continues in the fourth novel about Francis Tucket.

Things look grim for Francis and his adopted family, Lottie and Billy. Without horses, water, or food, they’re alone in a prairie wasteland, with the dreaded Comanchero outlaws in pursuit. Death can strike at any moment—but so can good fortune. When they stumble upon an ancient treasure, it takes teamwork, courage, and wit to hold on to it. By sticking together, Francis and his family wind up rich beyond their wildest dreams, and ready to head west to find Francis’s parents on the Oregon Trail.

Book:Zooman Sam

Zooman Sam

Lois Lowry, Diane de Groat

It’s Future Job Day at Sam’s school, and Sam knows exactly what he wants to be when he grows up-a zookeeper, just like Zookeeper Jake in his favorite picture book. His mother and big sister, Anastasia, help Sam create a memorable costume-so memorable that Sam insists on wearing it long after Future Job Day has passed and the rest of his classmates are back in their regular clothes.

Encouraged by Mrs. Bennett, his teacher, Sam embarks on a lengthy project to teach his preschool class about a zookeeper’s responsibilities, and along the way learns just how difficult a job teaching is. As always, the patient and loving Krupnik family stands by as Anastasia’s irrepressible little brother struggles with a set of nearly impossible goals. Children will delight in this latest story featuring the precocious and irresistible Sam.

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