This week’s pair of free audiobooks from AudioSYNC are disappearance tales, one a mystery, the other filled with researched facts, both great for summer reading with your ears!
Download before Wednesday 19 June 2019 for free by clicking on the title and following the simple instructions. You have these free AudioSYNC titles as long as you keep them on your device.
You can also check them out from your local library or buy through an indie bookstore – explore all the audiobook titles available so you can read while you ride, run, walk, or work – please stay aware of your surroundings!
The science of chewing, swallowing, digesting, and eliminating what we eat mixes with stories of exorcists, pet-food taste-testing labs, mad scientists, and terrorists in this well-researched and humorous look at food, nutrition, and our alimentary canals from one end to the other.
Assassinations – dreams denied. Protests and retaliation – hope swings forward, then back. War in our living rooms – who can look away?
This collection of non-fiction essays and memoirs by stellar YA and middle grade authors does go chronologically through 1968, but is vivid and nuanced and anguished – no dry parade of factoids on a timeline!
In “The Death of the Dream,” Kekla Magoon recounts the assasinations of Dr. King and RFK, while Laban Carrick Hill remembers those same days as a young child in a very racist Southern family “On the Wrong Side of History.”
What do you know about the 1968 student riots in Paris and Mexico City? – the small freedoms gained in Czechoslovakia during “Prague Spring” before the USSR Communist leaders cracked down? – the protests against Columbia University’s attempt to build a gym by razing a black neighborhood? – the Red Guard in China during the Cultural Revolution?
Police brutality against protesters in Chicago was viewed by 90 million people on live television in 1968, research on genetics and computing raced forward in laboratories, while the Olympics and Presidential election and space race dominated the headlines.
The authors relay their personal connection or outlook to the event they chronicle, with each quarter of the year headed by Elizabeth Partridge’s recap of the Nightly News including Vietnam war fatalities – military and civilian – night after night after night.
Be sure to read the contributors’ biographies at the end: Jennifer Anthony, Marc Aronson, Susan Campbell Bartoletti, Loree Griffin Burns, Omar Figueroas, Paul Fleischman, Laban Carrick Hill, Mark Kurlansky, Lenore Look, David Lubar, Kate MacMillan, Kekla Magoon, Jim Murphy, Elizabeth Partridge.
Get it today at your favorite indie bookstore for Independent Bookstore Day!
What historic moment during your lifetime would you write about? **kmm
Book info: 1968: Today’s Authors Explore a Year of Rebellion, Revolution & Change / edited by Marc Aronson & Susan Campbell Bartoletti. Candlewick Press, 2018. [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
The world of books, the sisterhood of Girl Scouts, her chance for dreams to come true!
Papa’s attention went mostly to her big brother, Mama focused on little sister whose bout with meningitis scarred the whole family (not much money, lots of love), so Sylvia discovered her own best way through life, with the help of her Girl Scout troop and leaders.
This biography brings readers into Sylvia’s extended family, into the days when Latinas were just being accepted into science professions, into her growing attitude that she can plan and dream and make those dreams come true.
So excited that she is a keynote speaker this week at the Texas Library Association Annual Conference in Austin!
What influences have helped you during your life journey? **kmm
Book info: Path to the Stars: My Journey from Girl Scout to Rocket Scientist / Sylvia Acevedo. Clarion Books, 2018. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
Also available in Spanish – Camino a las estrellas (Path to the Stars Spanish edition): Mi recorrido de Girl Scout a ingeniera astronáutica / Sylvia Acevedo and Isabel Mendoza. Clarion Books, 2018.
My book talk: From the rocket science lab and executive board room, Sylvia Acevedo looks back on the events which brought her here from a crowded Las Cruces neighborhood, acknowledging the hardships and help received along the way.
Moving across town from the dirt streets where everyone knows everyone’s business to a new neighborhood with air-conditioned houses in the 1960s, Sylvia fights expectations that she’s academically behind her new classmates and gets used to hearing English spoken everywhere except her home.
An invitation to a Brownie troop meeting changes her life, as Sylvia finds the perfect place to explore her own interests (instead of Papa’s limits), learn how to manage money and speak confidently (cookie sales!), and plan for her future (not a strong skill in her family).
She loves science and math and star-gazing and going to the library and dreams of going to college – determination and planning can get her there!
This true story of one Mexican-American girl’s journey from just getting by to getting rockets into space as an engineer celebrates the strength of family love, the power of positive role models during childhood, and her own persistence in learning everything she needs to move to the next step in her plans.
New school year, new students, old faces… cloned teens in their first public appearance!
Darkwood Academy’s generations-strong tradition of academic excellence gets a huge shock as Emma’s junior year begins, worse for her as Levi is the clone of her best friend Eli who committed suicide during the summer.
But why did someone invest a true fortune to get these six from the “misguided lab technician” who cloned them from the umbilical cord blood of Emma’s classmates, then give them the best-possible homeschooling on his island-nation estate until just this moment to reveal them to the world?
The near-future of Darkwood’s cloned teens may be nearer than we think.
Book info: The Similars / Rebecca Hanover. Sourcebooks Fire, 2019. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
My book talk:
Every day at Darkwood reminds Emma of her best friend’s recent suicide – because his clone is one of the new students at their exclusive school. Sixteen years after being illegally cloned, the other “Similars” are in classes with their genetic twins, competing for grades, honors, and status.
While some families embrace the chance to welcome another member into their family, virulent anti-clone rhetoric invades classes and club meetings, especially after Emma’s roommate (an Original) is brutally attacked.
Who is the mysterious man who acquired and raised the Similars in secrecy till now? Why were the clones allowed to apply to the same exclusive school as their Originals? How can Emma endure seeing Levi when Eli is gone forever?
As some Similars edge out their Originals in academic rank and status, Darkwood Academy is on edge. What Emma learns from Levi may push them over the brink!
Lightning storms go on and on. Frost on the window in summer. A house across the street that no one else in town can seem to remember…
Big change, moving from Chicago after Mom’s death to the small Arizona town where Dad grew up.
So many weird things are happening here – of course the twins and their new friends are going to investigate!
Can you escape sorrow by moving to a new place? **kmm
Book info: The Year of Lightning (The Time Shift Trilogy. book 1) / Ryan Dalton. Jolly Fish Press/North Star Editions, 2016. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
My book talk: When Malcolm sees someone in an abandoned house which has no doors, the fifteen-year-old and his twin Valentine uncover a dangerous force that imperils their small town – lightning can strike much more than twice in the same place!
New to grandmother’s old house, new to Dad’s old high school, the twins start making friends as Malcolm dives into history and Valentine impresses her science teacher.
But Patrick disappears right after Fred’s back-to-school party, so school newspaper editor Winter gets everyone investigating, as the lightning storms get more and more intense.
Is the lightning striking the abandoned house or coming from it?
Why must the strange watch found there stay with Malcolm constantly?
Who’s the shadowed man lurking around town now?
The teens and longtime town residents must hurry to find out what’s going on in that house and with the watch that won’t keep normal time before it’s too late! (first in Time Shift Trilogy).
Life aboard an old space station alternates between boring and emergency, even for its kids. (Please say that school won’t be same old routine in the future!)
With something loose in the maintenance tunnels disrupting power and other essential services, our genius middle-schoolers are on the search team, trying to locate Princess Sparkle before anyone else finds their three-headed kitten – or anything else goes wrong!
What’s your favorite cute/oops pet story? **kmm
Book info: Sanity & Tallulah / written & illustrated by Molly Brooks. Disney/Hyperion, 2018. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
My Book Talk: When her lab-engineered (cute, but very illegal) pet escapes, preteen genius Sanity and best friend Tallulah must find the three-headed kitten before it causes any more critical outages in the space station!
Sanity used only outdated (very unstable) tech and her own energy allowance to create Princess Sparkle, Destroyer of Worlds, but the Wilnick’s lab director (Tallulah’s mom) still confiscates the cute carnivore. Three heads are smarter than one – Princess quickly gets out of confinement and into the station’s maintenance tunnels.
Sudden power disruptions all over Wilnick! Something has been chewing on the coolant lines.
Weird noises on the supply shuttle! Tallulah’s dad and little brother can track that down.
Power outage locks their class in the chemistry lab! Sanity can find a way to get them out safely.
Everyone’s on alert so they can eliminate the “huge beast” threatening this old space station’s life support systems – Sanity and Tallulah must find the kitten first in this futuristic graphic novel!
Dinosaurs in South America? Of course intrepid British scientists in the early 20th century will journey there, facing many perils along the way! A late-career story by the author famed for his Sherlock Holmes books.
What were your favorite AudioSYNC audiobooks this summer?
He dreams of NBA fame,
not math or astronomy,
but suddenly, he must use every skill…to stay alive!
When an explosion hits their neighborhood, young teens must get over old disagreements and pool their talents so they can escape the danger and find their parents, using a new computer game that calls into question everything they ‘know’ about their families and themselves.
Would you run for safety or stay to find your family?
Book info: The Lost Tribes (Lost Tribes, book 1) / C. Taylor-Butler; illustrated by Patrick Arrasmith. Move Books, 2015. [author site] [illustrator site] [publisher site] [book trailer] Review copy from author for MultiCultural Children’s Book Day 2018; cover image courtesy of the publisher.
My book talk: Life on their boring California street explodes into adventure as Ben and his friends work together on an amazing quest computer game, just before all their parents go missing!
Ben and younger sister April seize Uncle Henry’s challenge to solve the game in one week, bringing in neighbors Carlos (great at programming, bad at basketball), Grace (best friend since kindergarten, even if she’s a girl), and Serise (codebreaker deluxe, super snob) as the 3D interactive missions invite them to “find 8 keys” all over the world.
The five encounter puzzles and codes and stinky bird poop (almost as bad as the goopy smoothies Mom makes Ben and April drink) in Egypt, Easter Island, China – it’s so real!
But their parents are acting weirder than usual, a huge satellite dish appears near Carlos’ house then vanishes, and a nighttime attack sends all the families fleeing, kids separated from the adults!
Can the game help the teens get to the “harbor of safety” in reality?
Who would target their easy-going scientist and doctor parents with bombs?
What did Uncle Henry mean about “introducing them to the family business”?
This first book in the Lost Tribes series takes readers on a wide-ranging adventure as the five youths of different cultural backgrounds must use their individual talents together to keep the universe in balance.
Multicultural Children’s Book Day (27 Jan 2018) is in its 5th year and was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom.
Our mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in home and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents and educators.
My book talk: When an earthquake frightens Genie cat away from the garage, the Lowriders race to find him, right into a volcano filled with mythic creatures of Central America!
Trickster Coyote tries to keep the friends trapped in a corn maze with his outrageous puns, but they follow Genie’s terrified meows toward territory of legends.
Can impala master mechanic Lupe steer the lowrider safely through Earth’s Outer Core?
How can octopus Flappy distract La Llorona so they can sneak into the Realm of the Dead?
Will Mictlan’s love of bones keep them there forever?
This graphic novel is the Southwest itself, with Spanish words jumping into every sentence like Elirio the mosquito zings around every danger, footnotes and endnotes explaining all like Lupe keeps the Lowriders team working together, and Raul the Third’s art bringing details from the oldest of stories to today’s wrestling and dip-drop lowrider cars.
In the West, huge discoveries await!
Giant bones, tremendous deadly teeth,
and only one searcher can be the first to find them!
Early days of paleontology in America were more rough and tumble than scientifically sedate, and this two-voices tale of double-crosses, dangerous digging, and surprising love captures the race for fame and naming rights so well.
Read the first chapter here, courtesy of the publisher (I love when this free peek is offered!), then head to your local library or independent bookstore to continue the search for bones…really big bones.
Ever fallen in love with ‘the enemy’ – according to your family and friends?
Book info: Every Hidden Thing / Kenneth Oppel. Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2017. [author site] [publisher site] [book trailer] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
My book talk: Their fathers racing to uncover dinosaur fossils in the West, Rachel and Samuel seek their own prizes from the prehistoric world – she to be recognized as a scientist in her own right, he to find the first complete T. Rex skeleton – but treachery on Native American lands and their own fathers’ feud may bury their dreams.
It didn’t start with the fistfight between two learned paleontologists at the Academy, and it didn’t end there, because Rachel Cartland’s father had sneaked one fossil set from the New Jersey bog where Samuel Bolt’s father was digging, then denied Bolt a teaching post at Yale, then finally leapfrogged the Bolt team to the Badlands where Pawnee hunted and dinosaur bones waited to be found.
Bones sent to Mr. Bolt hint of the location of T. Rex at last – why is Prof. Cartland heading the same place with his army of helpers?
Despite warnings from his scout, Cartland and company vandalize a Sioux death memorial – does the professor care nothing for humans?
Both teams spy on the others – will this rivalry result in more injuries, damaged priceless specimens, death?
Told alternately by Samuel and Rachel, this tale of the adventurous early days of paleontology includes the discovery of unknown dinosaurs, legends come to life, and love amid the dust of the frontier.
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