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  • Writer's pictureClover

Thankful For ... Picks

Updated: Nov 10, 2021

Clover is especially “Thankful For …” being with loved ones this Thanksgiving. After a glum holiday in 2020, your buddy is grateful to be sharing a memorable time with family and friends.

Another blessing on Clover’s thankful list is books and the opportunity to spread news about must-reads that make her antenna glow. You’re sure to enjoy her suggestions for November. Page On! Enjoy!

The Community Literacy Foundation, with support from it's sponsors, provides these books to 38 school and public libraries in Washington, Union, Pacific, St. Clair and surrounding communities. Learn more at

Youngest Read

Young and old might like to emulate an idea from “Thankful,” by Elaine Vickers. The little girl in the book creates a paper chain; each loop noting something she’s thankful for, the colorful chain growing daily, a concrete example of the blessings in her life.

The child begins in her room with her home and her parents, a mom and dad “… who read me stories and brush my hair gently, gently. Who whisper the same poem every night when they tuck me in.”

She then branches out into her world, for a dog that “… comforts me when I am scared,” for her teacher and books and for a “… smooth road for riding bikes with friends.”

Her list grows and grows until it stretches around her room, as Clover’s sure young readers’ paper chains will do, too. Clever illustrations by Samantha Cotterill make this Pick pop, combining real-life pictures with cartoon-like characters chockfull of charisma.

Middle Read

Tricky ghosts congregate in Oliver Jeffers newest—this author/illustrator always delivers but he knocks the spooks out of the park with “There’s a Ghost in This House.”

Here’s hoping you don’t have an apparition coming to your house on Thanksgiving!

The fun starts on the cover with cutouts establishing the play between jokester ghosts and a blue-haired girl in a striped dress. She welcomes readers into her home, telling them she hasn’t had visitors in a while.

Vellum paper inserts bring to light the reason why. When the special pages are turned, ghosts that haven’t been visible suddenly appear in the weirdest places, behind the couch, swinging on a chandelier, and in chains haunting the halls. The little girl asks readers questions about ghosts because she can’t see the ones in the book—only readers can, which is certain to tickle funny bones.

Details about the haunted house where the child lives are included. Ingenuity at its best will make this book a favorite any time of the year.

Oldest Read

“The Beatryce Prophecy,” by Kate DiCamillo, is magically addictive. This luscious, wise fable features an unusual troupe of characters on a quest to help a girl find her mother and regain a kingdom.

The story begins with an unusual animal—Answelica, an aggressive she-goat residing with the monks of the Order of the Chronicles of Sorrowing. The goat butts incessantly and bites.

An unfortunate victim is Brother Edik, a gentle monk who finds a girl child asleep next to the goat. Answelica becomes the girl’s caretaker—the brothers name her Beatryce, cutting her hair and disguising her as a monk.

Beatryce can’t recall how she arrived at the monastery, but gradually her past returns. She grows close to Brother Edik, and he comes to admire her—a girl who can read, something unheard of—a girl who writes stories.

When 12-year-old orphan Jack Dory wanders into Beatryce’s life searching for someone to write the confession of a sick soldier of the King, the brothers see it as a way to rid themselves of Beatryce and Answelica —all but Brother Edik. He joins Beatryce, Jack and Answelica on their journey to Castle Abelard, a journey that culminates with the addition of an elderly man.

Queen DiCamillo has added another jewel to her treasure trove of unforgettable books. Illustrations by Sophie Blackall do DiCamillo’s story proud.

Written by Chris Stuckenschneider. Copyright 2021, Community Literacy Foundation. Reprinted with permission.

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