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mixedmedia

Access Your Local Library With the Libby App

Did you know your local library has thousands of ebooks and audiobooks? You can borrow them, instantly, for free, using just the device in your hand. Users will need a valid library card from a participating system to use Libby, but the app makes it easy to download books and audiobooks for offline reading, or place the titles you want on hold. Little kids can access graphic novels or picture books with read-along audio. FREE Available for IOS and Android devices and Windows 10.



PBS KIDS' Splash and Bubbles Ocean Adventure App

PBS KIDS’ newest series, “Splash and Bubbles,” features a collection of adventures in four habitats in which children learn about the ocean alongside their “ocean friends” from the popular animated series co-produced by The Jim Henson Company and Herschend Studios. In the app, kids join Splash, Bubbles, Dunk and Ripple on a journey to the world’s undersea habitats, where they discover over 30 species of creatures that live there. Only $2.99 at the App Store for IOS devices.



— Jenny L. Heinbaugh


Book Reviews

Books for Giving Thanks

By Mary Quattlebaum

babies / tots

Tall, Tall Tree

Through engaging rhymes and stunning pictures, little ones experience the majesty of the natural world and the thrill of hiking among giant redwoods. They also learn about the trees’ wild neighbors and how to count as they pick out one “soaring” eagle, two “brown and spotted” owls, all the way up to ten ladybugs on “teeny tiny feet.” Chad Wallace’s light-filled illustrations realistically portray the ecosystem of the northern California coast, while zooming in on intriguing details such as the red caps of acorn woodpeckers and the soft yellow bodies of banana slugs. In addition to the pithy poems of the text, Anthony D. Fredericks provides four pages of fun facts about the trees and animals, as well as playful STEAM-related activities.


ages 3 – 8

Philomena’s New Glasses

Washington author Brenna Maloney captures the affection, support and occasional tiffs of sisters in this delightful tale of three guinea pig siblings. When Philomena gets a glamorous pair of purple glasses, Audrey and Nora Jean are quick to nab their own. Soon the furry sisters acquire handbags, snacks and frocks in a frenzied attempt to keep up with one another. Nora Jean calls a plaintive halt to this – only to show up on the final page sporting a shiny necklace. Adding to the zany fun of it all are the photographs of the three fluffy girls in their accumulated bling and bric-a-brac. Sure to tickle the funny bone of anyone – kid or adult – with a sibling.


ages 9 – 14

To the Copper Country: Mihaela’s Journey

Local author Barbara Carney-Coston draws from her own family history in this spellbinding novel of an 11-year-old girl’s journey from Croatia to Michigan in the late 1800s. Mihaela’s father had traveled ahead of the family, to work the copper mines in the new country, but when he is felled by a painful eye disease, the girl, her two younger brothers and their mother know they must bring healing herbs to him as quickly as possible. The journey is long, though, and when the herbs are lost, it’s up to Michaela to discover the means to cure their father. Carney-Coston’s immigration story and additional material – historic photos, family recipes, map and annotated bibliography – may prompt young readers to ask questions about their long-ago relatives when extended family gathers round the Thanksgiving table.


Mary Quattlebaum is the author of 25 award-winning children’s books, most recently “Hero Dogs,” a National Geographic nonfiction chapter book about amazing animal heroes. Mary is a popular school and conference speaker.maryquattlebaum.com