• Here are book recommendations from our Mill Valley School District Librarian, Jane Ritter



    Nonfiction is strongly emphasized in the new Common Core Standards; “to be ready for college, workforce training, and life in a technological society, students need the ability to gather, comprehend, evaluate, synthesize, and report on information and ideas…” With this in mind and because nonfiction interests are so personal, I recommend your children choose from a variety of nonfiction topics and explore a wide range of texts. Picture book biographies are a great source of information on many, many interesting people. Here is a short sampling of some great ones:


    Picture Book Biographies


    Barnum’s Bones by Fern     

    Boys of Steel: The Creators of Superman by Nobleman

    Electric Ben by Byrd

    Fifty Cents and a Dream: Young Booker T. Washington by Asim

    Helen’s Big Words by Rappaport

    Life in the Ocean by Nivola

    Noah Webster and His Words by Ferris

    Rachel Carson and Her Book that Changed the World by Lawlor

    Seed by Seed by Codell

    Tillie the Terrible by Stauffacher

    You Never Heard of Willie Mays by Winter


    Here are some websites with notable nonfiction books:











    There are so many wonderful books published each and every year. Browse! Ask your Public Librarian for suggestions.


    Picture books

    Bear Has a Story to Tell by Stead

    Benjamin Bear in Bright Ideas! By Coudray

    Building Our House by Bean

    Creepy Carrots by Reynolds

    Flora and the Flamingo by Idle

    Goldilocks Variations by Ahlberg

    Home for Bird by Stead

    Lucky Ducklings by Moore

    Nighttime Ninja by Dacosta

    That is Not a Good Idea by Willems

    This Moose Belongs to Me by Jeffers

    Three Little Pigs and the Somewhat Bad Wolf by Teague



    Early Reader Popular Characters

    Andy Shane by Jacobson

    Annie and Snowball by Rylant

    Biscuit by Capucilli

    Cork and Fuzz by  Chaconas

    Dixie by  Gilman

    Elephant and Piggie by Willems (newest one is Big Guy Took My Ball)

    Fancy Nancy by O’Connor

    Fly Guy by Arnold

    Frog and Friends by Bunting

    Henry and Mudge by Rylant

    High-Rise Private Eyes by Rylant

    Houndsley and Catina by Howe

    Iris and Walter by Guest

    Minnie and Moo by Cazet

    Mr. and Mrs. Green by Baker

    Mr. Putter and Tabby by Rylant

    Mouse and Mole by Yee

    Nate the Great by Sharmat

    Penny by Henkes

    Pinkalicious by  Kann

    Splat the Cat by Scotton


    Chapter Book Series (including some graphic novels)

    Entering grades 2 and up

    Alvin Ho by Look

    Babymouse by Holm

    Ballpark Mysteries by Kelly

    Bink and Gollie by DiCamillo

    Buddy Files  by Butler

    Calendar Mysteries by Roy

    Clementine by Pennypacker

    Captain Underpants by Pilkey

    Dragonbreath by Vernon

    Emma by Warner

    Familiars by Epstein

    Frankie Pickle by Wight

    Hiro’s Quest by West

    I Survived by Tarshis

    Lulu by McKay

    Lulu by Viorst

    Ivy and Bean by Barrows

    J.J. Tully Mysteries by Cronin

    Judy Moody by McDonald

    Magic Tree House by Osborne

    Mallory by Freidman

    My Weird School by Gutman

    Nancy Clancy by O’Connor

    Squish by Holm

    Stink by McDonald

    Zita the Spacegirl by Hatke


    Popular Fiction Series

    For grades 4 and up

    Big Nate by Peirce

    Beyonders and Fablehaven by Mull

    Books of Elsewhere by West

    Brixton Brothers by Barnett

    43 Old Cemetery Road by Klise

    Gregor the Overlander by Collins

    Guys Read edited by Scieszka

    Mother-Daughter Book Club by Frederick

    My Life as a Book by Tashjian

    N.E.R.D.S. by Buckley

    Peter and the Starcatchers by Barry

    Popularity Papers by Ignatow

    Ruby Redfort by Child

    Secret Zoo by Chick

    Sisters Grimm by Buckley

    Tapestry by Neff

    Theodore Boone by Grisham



    For entering grades 5 and up

    Cardboard by Pennapel

    Cats of Tanglewood Forest by DeLint

    Destiny Rewritten by Fitzmaurice

    Dog Called Homeless by Lean

    False Prince by Nielsen

    Jinx by Blackwood

    Key and the Flame by Caterer

    Ghost Hawk by Cooper (this comes out in August—WOW)

    Giants Beware! By Aguirre

    Glory Be by Scattergood

    Grand Plan to Fix Everything by Krishnaswami

    Hero’s Guide to Storming the Castle by Healy (and sequel)

    Hold Fast by Balliett

    Liar and Spy by Stead

    On the Road to Mr. Mineo’s by O’Connor

    One and Only Ivan by Applegate

    One White Dolphin by Lewis

    Rump by Shortliff

    Spindlers by Oliver

    Splendors and Glooms by Schlitz

    Spy School and Spy Camp by Gibbs

    Starry River of the Sky by Lin

    Stick Dog by Watson

    Summer of the Gypsy Moths by Pennypacker

    Tangle of Knots by Graff

    Ten Good and Bad Things About my Life (So Far) by Martin

    Three Times Lucky by Turage

    Two Crafty Criminals by Pullman

    Unfortunate Son by Leeds

    Unwanteds by McMann (and sequel)

    Whizz Pop Chocolate Shop by Saunders

    Who Could that be at this Hour? by Snicket

    Wonder by Palacio



    This list could go on forever! If you need more ideas, here are some websites you might want to peruse:







    Perhaps your child would like to review books: http://www.dogobooks.com



    Jane Ritter

    Mill Valley School District Librarian