The new year has begun, and we hope you are as pumped as we are about it! This year, we invite all of you to embark on the journey of taking on a great reading challenge, known as the 2015 Reading Challenge by Popsugar. You can find the full list here, so feel free to print it out and use it as a handy bookmark. Each month we will highlight four to five categories from the list, offer at least one book for each age group for each category, and then provide you all with more resources so you can find interesting books for each category. Also, join us on our Facebook page and tell us what you've read and which category it covered. 

Let's get started on our January highlights!

A Funny Book

Undead and Unwed by Mary Janice Davidson

After losing her job and being killed in an unfortunate car accident, fashion savvy Betsy Taylor becomes one of the undead and, with the help of her newfound friends, the lure of designer shoes, and a sexy vampire, must destroy an obnoxious, power-hungry vampire enemy and fulfill her apparent destiny as the prophesied vampire queen.

The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot

What? A princess?? Me??? Yeah, right. Mia Thermopolis is pretty sure there's nothing worse than being a five-foot-nine, flat-chested freshman, who also happens to be flunking Algebra. Is she ever in for a surprise. First Mom announces that she's dating Mia's Algebra teacher. Then Dad has to go and reveal that he is the crown prince of Genovia. And guess who still doesn't have a date for the Cultural Diversity Dance?

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Greg Heffley's Journal by Jeff Kinney

The hazards of growing up before you're ready are uniquely revealed through words and drawings as Greg records them in his diary. In book one of this debut series, Greg is happy to have Rowley, his sidekick, along for the ride. But when Rowley's star starts to rise, Greg tries to use his best friend's newfound popularity to his own advantage, kicking off a chain of events that will test their friendship in hilarious fashion.

Find more books: Novelist


A Book by a Female Author

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society: A Novel by Mary Ann Shaffer

In January 1946, London is beginning to recover from World War II, and Juliet Ashton is looking for a subject for her next book. She spent the war years writing a column for the Times until her own dear flat became a victim of a German bomb. While sifting through the rubble and reconstructing her life, she receives a letter from a man on Guernsey, the British island occupied by the Germans, who was writing to ask if she knew of any other books by the author. So begins a correspondence that draws Juliet into the community of Guernsey and the members of the Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. Named to protect its members from arrest by the Germans, the society shares their unique love of literature and life with a newfound friend. Seeing this as the subject of her next book, Juliet sails to Guernsey, a voyage that will change her life.

Darkness, My Old Friend: A Novel by Lisa Unger

Jones Cooper has given up his post at the Hollows Police Department and is having trouble facing a horrible event from his past. Then psychic Eloise Montgomery comes to him with predictions about his future, some of them dire. Another person in town is also working with Eloise while investigating the disappearance of his mother years ago. And fifteen-year-old Willow Graves may be heading for trouble.

Tails Chasing Tails by Matthew Porter

The readerr follows a fascinating parade of cool colorful animals, where the animal on one page is chasing the tail of the animal on the next. The book should be a fun adventure for new, little readers.


Find more books: Catalog


A Book That Made You Cry

A Child Called "It" : One Child's Courage to Survive by David J. Pelzer

This book chronicles the account of one of the most severe child abuse cases in California history. It is the story of Dave Pelzer, who was brutally beaten and starved by his emotionally unstable, alcoholic mother: a mother who played tortuous, unpredictable games -- games that left him nearly dead. He had to learn how to play his mother's games in order to survive because she no longer considered him a son, but a slave; and no longer a boy, but an "it."

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas by John Boyne

Bored and lonely after his family moves from Berlin to a place called "Out-With" in 1942, Bruno, the son of a Nazi officer, befriends a boy in striped pajamas who lives behind a wire fence. Taking place during the Holocaust, the reader sees the horrible conditions through the eyes of boy who just wants friends.

The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein

A young boy grows to manhood and old age experiencing the love and generosity of a tree which gives to him without thought of return. While the book is actually a poem and not a novel, the beautiful words have touched many generations and more to come.

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A Book with a Color in the Title

Black Orchid by Neil Gaiman

Before introducing the modern version of The Sandman, Neil Gaiman wrote this dark tale that reinvented a strange DC Comics Super Hero in the Vertigo mold. Both human and flower, the heroine, Black Orchid, undertakes a hazardous journey to uncover her true origins, providing a moving ecological parable for our times.

Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier

Gwyneth Shepherd's sophisticated, beautiful cousin Charlotte has been prepared her entire life for traveling through time. But unexpectedly, it is Gwyneth who in the middle of class takes a sudden spin to a different era!Gwyneth must now unearth the mystery of why her mother would lie about her birth date to ward off suspicion about her ability, brush up on her history, and work with Gideon-the time traveler from a similarly gifted family that passes the gene through its male line, and whose presence becomes, in time, less insufferable and more essential. Together, Gwyneth and Gideon journey through time to discover who, in the 18th century and in contemporary London, they can trust.

The Purple Kangaroo by Michael Ian Black

The monkey narrator in this humorous picture book gaurantees that he can READ YOUR MIND. What begins as a simple request to imagine the most spectacular thing in history turns into the story of a roller-skating, bubble-blowing purple kangaroo searching for his dear friend Ernesto on the moon. So by the time you finish this book, there's no chance you will be thinking of anything BUT the purple kangaroo.


Find more books: Novelist