Kids Books

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April is National Jazz Month

April is National Jazz Month.   Here are some books children and their loved ones may enjoy reading together:

The Candystore Man book coverThe Candystore Man, written by Jonathan London, and illustrated by Kevin O'Malley
In the 1950's, the Candystore Man plays saxophone and sells candy and other treats to the neighborhood children and teens.  If you look closely, you will see a newspaper with the heading "Charlie 'Bird' Parker Dead at Age 35."

Jazz Baby Book CoverJazz Baby, written by Carole Boston Weatherford, and illustrated by Laura Freeman
Young children play a variety of musical instruments, dance, and have fun.

Jazzmatazz! book coverJazzmatazz!, written by Stephanie Calmenson, and illustrated by Bruce Degen
A baby notices a mouse start to play jazz music on the piano.  Dog soon starts to accompany Mouse with his dog bones and bowl.  Who else will join the jam session?

Jazzy Miz Mozetta Book CoverJazzy Miz Mozetta, written by Brenda C. Roberts, and illustrated by Frank Morrison
One evening, Miz Mozetta dresses up in a snazzy red outfit and takes a walk.   While walking, she thinks about dancing again.  What will happen next?

Lookin' For Bird in the Big City book coverLookin' for Bird in the Big City, written by Robert Burleigh, and illustrated by Marek Los
A teenage trumpet player looks for Charlie "Bird" Parker, a famous saxophonist.   This story is inspired by the famous trumpet player Miles Davis.

Rent Party JazzRent Party Jazz, written by William Miller, and illustrated by Charlotte Riley-Webb
Sonny goes to school, works part time, lives in New Orleans in the 1930's.   When Sonny's mom loses her job, Sonny learns about a special way to help out.

Rum-a-Tum-Tum, written by Angela Shelf Medearis, and illustrated by James Ransome
A girl who lives in the French Quarter of New Orleans in the early 1900's observes street vendors selling their goods with poetic and jazzy words.  Whom will she see next?

Sophia's War : A Tale of the Revolution

Sophia's War book coverIf you are looking for an exciting, fast paced, suspenseful and action packed historical fiction read Sophia’s War:  A Tale of Revolution written by Newbery Medalist Avi.  Twelve year old Sophia lives with her family in British occupied New York City in 1776. Her brother William joins the Patriot cause against the British and enlists in the rebel militia.  Sophia’s mother and father must hide their support of the Patriot cause simply because they are surrounded by loyalists and must house British officers in their home.  When Sophia’s brother William is injured in battle and then dies in a British prison, Sophia vows to avenge his death.  Sophia soon finds herself in a very challenging situation:  working as a spy for the Patriot cause.  Her task is to warn General Washington of a British plan to capture West Point, a strategic Patriot stronghold overlooking the Hudson River.  Benedict Arnold, a Patriot traitor, is involved in this plan but only Sophia discovers this.   Sophia is a determined and strong heroine as she sets off on a perilous journey to warn General Washington of the British plan and of Benedict Arnold's treason. Short chapters and excellent writing make this thrilling tale of espionage and courage a great read for 6th graders as well as Young Adults.    

Easter Eggs!

The Easter Bunnny That Overslept book coverThe Easter Bunny that Overslept, written by by Priscilla and Otto Friedrich, and illustrated by Donald Saaf.   One year, the Easter Bunny overslept and missed Easter.   The Easter Bunny woke up in May, and tried to deliver his eggs, even though it was the wrong time of the year.   The Easter Bunny has an idea to get people interested in the eggs.  What is he going to do?

Minverva Louise and the Colorful Eggs Book CoverMinerva Louise and the Colorful Eggs, written and illustrated by Janet Morgan Stoeke.
Minerva Louise, the hen, takes a walk around the farm and finds many colorful eggs.   Minerva Louise is confused, so she tells the other hens, who also wander around, wondering what is going on.  


Both of these gently humorous picture books have beautiful pictures for children and their loved ones to enjoy.

A Kitten's Year

Cover of A Kitten's YearThe story of a kitten’s first year of life is illustrated for young minds and hearts.  


A kitten’s growth is followed during a calendar year with colorful art work, and short but descriptive narrative.  Each page is a new month and a new stage of growth for the kitten until it reaches adulthood in December. The growing kitten is seen at play as it learns new skills appropriate to its age. 


Children learn the months of the year, the concept of time, and stages of an animal’s life.  Beautifully illustrated and simply stated.  A Kitten’s Year by Nancy Raines Day is sure to delight young children.

Asteroids or Meteorites



photo of meteoroid

It was in the news - massive, the size of 15-story office building, asteroid DA14 nearly brushed the surface of the Earth on February 14th, 2013. Almost at the same time another meteorite (or meteoroid) unexpectedly exploded over Russia's Ural region. About 1,200 people, 200 of them children, were injured mostly by glass that exploded into schools and workplaces. Meteoroids typically cause sonic booms when they enter  the Earth's atmosphere and the one over Russia shattered windows, TVs and dishes in peoples's homes. Large asteroids reflect the light of the sun, so it is easy to see them and small objects like the one that exploded over Ural are difficult to trace. Meteoroids are usually pieces of matter that have splintered off from asteroids. A meteorite is a meteoroid that reaches the surface of the Earth without being completely vaporized . To find out more about these mysteriously dangerous space objects come to the library and explore all our materials from books (digital and printed) to DVDs.

 Here are some titles from our collections:

 Adult materials:

        Comets, Meteors and Asteroids by John Man 

        Cosmic collisions [videorecording] : our explosive universe

        Asteroids [videorecording] : deadly impact  

Children's books:

        Asteroids by Derek Zobel

        Comets and Asteroids by E.M. Hans

        Jupiter and the Asteroids and the rest of Explore the solar system series books 

Crafts at the Library!

Dr. Seuss' Birthday

The library is a great place to learn new crafts. Every month we have craft programs for kids. In March we celebrated Dr. Seuss' Birthday by creating "Cat in the Hat" and ''Red Fish, Blue Fish" crafts, and on March 23rd we'll be making Play Dough in the library. But you don't have to wait for a craft program to have fun learning new crafts. The library has some great craft books that can teach you how to do new and exciting craft projects. Come by the library and check one of them out!




Cover image of African Crafts book Cover image of Native American crafts book Cover image of the book Easy Paper Crafts in 5 StepsCover image for the book Crafts for KIds who are Learning about Dinosaurs

Kids: Get Ready for Spring!

Spring is soon approaching, bringing a variety of intriguing and exciting changes in nature, weather and activities! Learn more about spring and the many ways to celebrate this season by checking out the following titles:




Kitten's Spring

Kitten's Spring by Eugenie Fernandes

On a bright, beautiful spring day, Kitten takes a stroll around the farmyard, meeting with all sorts of animals and their young including owls, frogs, cows, ducks and much more! 


Spring Surprises




Poppleton in Spring by Cynthia Rylant 

Spring has arrived and it is time for Poppleton to have fun and enjoy the activities that spring offers such as biking, shopping, sleeping in his backyard on a beautiful starry night and more!


Spring Break



The Boxcar Children Spring Break Special by Gertrude Chandler Warner

The Boxcar Children are about to have a spring break that they won't soon forget. They embark on new adventures and solve crimes at various places: at a local shopping mall, on a cruise ship, and in Hawaii. Readers will be intrigued by interesting characters and a gripping plot.







New Beginning: Celebrating the Spring Equinox

A New Beginning: Celebrating the Spring Equinox by Wendy Pfeffer

This multifaceted book contains interesting scientific and cultural facts about the Spring Equinox. Learn how spring is celebrated in various cultures throughout the ages and the world and participate in several fun activities contained in this book.


Are you ready for Spring?



Explore Spring!  by Maxine Anderson

Discover how nature, animals, plants and the climate change during the spring season! This book contains interesting scientific information about these changes that occur in spring.





Spring by Nicola Baxter

Flowers begin to bloom. The days are sunnier and longer. The weather is warmer. What else happens in spring? Read this book to find out!





For more recommendations, please see a librarian at your library.

Posted by Peter Nguyen on Mar 6, 2013 | Comments: 0 |

Books to Read to Furry Friends

The San José Public Library has a fun program for kids to practice their reading skills by reading to some friendly dogs, cats, and other animals. It's called Reading to Furry Friends. Kids are paired with an animal for some one-on-one reading time. This is a great way to encourage kids to improve their reading skills and develop relationships with animals.


If your kids need suggestions for what to read to them, here are some fun books that the listening animals might appreciate:


Book Cover of Oh No George!


Oh No George! by Chris Haughton


George wants to be a good dog, but when his owner goes out for the day, he struggles with the temptations that all dogs surely face: digging in the flower garden, chasing the cat, and swiping some cake off the kitchen table.  Will George be good?


Book Cover of Dog's Colorful Day




Dog’s Colorful Day by Emma Dodd


Dog is white with a black spot on one ear.  But after a day spent romping, he comes back with a whole bunch of different color spots.  Learn colors and number with this colorful canine!


Book Cover of Bark George


Bark, George by Jules Feiffer


The mother of this George despairs of ever getting her puppy to make the noise that all dogs must: BARK!  A variety of other animal sounds come out of George, so she takes him to the vet to see what the problem is.


Book Cover of Kitten's First Full Moon



Kitten’s First Full Moon by Kevin Henkes  


Kitten is convinced that the moon is a big bowl of milk just out of his reach.  He will try almost anything to get that bowl of milk.  Will Kitten go hungry or will he succeed?


Book Cover of Pete the Cat



Pete the Cat by James Dean


Pete loves his new white shoes.  But as he walks down the street and steps in colorful mess after colorful mess, his shoes aren’t so white anymore.  But that’s fine with Pete, who keeps singing his song and loving his shoes.


Book Cover of What Will Fat Cat Sit On?




What Will Fat Cat Sit On? By Jan Thomas


What will Fat Cat sit on?  All of the animals in this book just hope it won’t be them.  Can they come up with a solution before it’s too late?



If your child wants to read to one of our furry friends, then check out the locations below for dates and times:

Silicon Valley Reads - Brenda Ehrmantraut Author Visit at Santa Teresa Branch Library

Author Brenda Ehrmantraut with her book, Night CatchOn Saturday, February 9, 2013, the Santa Teresa Branch Library hosted a very special storytime featuring Night Catch by Brenda Ehrmantraut, a children's picture book about a game of catch using the North Star when a soldier's work takes him halfway around the world and away from his son. After the reading, the author signed books as well as crafts that were made during the constellation making craft activity that followed the storytime.


View more photos here at


Check out Night Catch by Brenda Ehrmantraut from your local library.

Happy Groundhog Day!

Groundhog Day happens every February 2nd.  Here are some fun books that you and your family may enjoy on Groundhog Day, or any other time of the year. 

Double Trouble Groundhog Day book coverDouble Trouble Groundhog Day, written by Bethany Roberts and illustrated by Bryan Caulay is a fun book that features sibling rivalry between groundhog twins Gregory and Greta.   One evening, Grampie Groundhog decides to hand over his weather forecasting duties to one of the twins.   Grannie Groundhog decides that the twins should draw straws to see who will take over Grampie Groundhog's duties.


Go To Sleep Groundhog book coverGo To Sleep, Groundhog! written by Judy Cox and illustrated by Paul Meisel is about a Groundhog with insomnia.   Groundhog goes to bed on Columbus day and sets his alarm clock for February 2.   Groundhog has trouble sleeping, so he goes above ground a few times to take walks.   While above ground, Groundhog sees interesting sites and discovers new holidays.   If you look carefully at the pictures, you will frequently see a little mouse, Groundhog's pal.  


Substitute Groundhog book coverSubstitute Groundhog, written by Pat Miller and illustrated by Kathi Ember, is another fun Groundhog Day story.   Groundhog has a bad flu, and he needs to find a substitute to take over his duties.  Whom will Groundhog choose?  Read and find out!



Other fun books include: