100 Books for Girls to Grow On

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An Inspiring Approach to Reading

From A Tree Grows in Brooklyn to Ramona the Pest to Wringer, here are 100 great books guaranteed to stir the imagination, spark conversation, and lead the way to adventure.

In 100 Books for Girls to Grow On, Shireen Dodson, author of the acclaimed The Mother-Daughter Book Club, offers a selection of both new and classic titles. Each book has been handpicked because it is a joy ...

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100 Books for Girls to Grow On

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An Inspiring Approach to Reading

From A Tree Grows in Brooklyn to Ramona the Pest to Wringer, here are 100 great books guaranteed to stir the imagination, spark conversation, and lead the way to adventure.

In 100 Books for Girls to Grow On, Shireen Dodson, author of the acclaimed The Mother-Daughter Book Club, offers a selection of both new and classic titles. Each book has been handpicked because it is a joy to read, because it inspires mother-daughter dialogue, and because it encourages creativity beyond the book experience.

Included are brief plot summaries for each book, as well as thought-provoking discussion questions, inspired field trip ideas, fun crafts and activities, and biographies of the authors.

Let books become a springboard for encouraging your daughter's imagination. Ideas inside include:

  • Design and draw colorful dresses like Wanda Petronski, heroine of Eleanore Estes' The Hundred Dresses.
  • Take your cue from Harriet the Spy and create your own stories from overheard snippets of conversation.
  • While reading Caddie Woodlawn, pull out a map and trace Caddie's mother's journey from Boston to the Wisconsin frontier.

You don't need to form a book club to use and enjoy 100 Books for Girls to Grow On. Shireen Dodson offers stimulating ideas that will spark your daughter's creativity and nurture a love for books.

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Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Katie O'Dell Madison
In this helpful and inspirational resource, author Dodson (The Mother-Daughter Book Club [HarperPerennial, 1997]) summarizes one hundred books that girls ages nine to thirteen might enjoy reading on their own or sharing in a book discussion group. Librarians, educators, and parents will find hundreds of ideas on how to use both the classic and current fiction selections in their libraries, classrooms, and homes, from Betty Smith's A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (Blakiston, 1943) to Jerry Spinelli's Wringer (HarperCollins, 1997). Organized alphabetically by title, each book is broken down into several categories including the summary, reading time, themes, discussion questions, information about the author, activities to do beyond the book, and recommended further reading. The discussion questions are thought-provoking and original, and will generate much discussion if used in a group. While reading time varies for each individual reader, the times Dodson approximates are quite accurate for the average enthusiastic reader. The information provided about each author is a short combination of interesting career and personal information, some of which may inspire many readers to do more research if they enjoy the book. Activities described to extend the reader's experience beyond the book are not always practical for librarians to do but can often be adapted and will generate many other ideas for crafts, games, research, and food options. This excellent tool is just right for anyone thinking of starting a book discussion group, energizing an existing book group, or looking to expand a readers' advisory collection. Index. Further Reading.
School Library Journal
In this companion to The Mother-Daughter Book Club (HarperCollins, 1997), Dodson provides annotations for books she believes will be successful in that forum. She also presents information about the authors, discussion questions, and ideas for crafts and field trips. Bibliographic citations and reading levels are not included. The annotations frequently convey more of Dodsons personal insights than facts about the books, and upon occasion miss the mark. For example, when discussing Philip Pullmans The Golden Compass, the author states: I was really intrigued by the whole concept of daemons, which seem to serve a similar function as blankies or stuffed animals. The fact that children are rendered spectrelike after the removal of their daemons would seem to contradict this conclusion. Other inconsistencies that mar the book are suggestions that 9- to 12-year-old girls watch the graphic film Amistad but wait until they are older to see Mutiny on the Bounty, and that children who are ready to tackle Harper Lees To Kill a Mockingbird will also enjoy painting pumpkins. Fans of the first book may take to this presentation, but Kathleen Odeans Great Books for Girls (Ballantine, 1997) and Alison Cooper-Mullins Once upon a Heroine (Contemporary Bks., 1998) provide a greater range of titles and more succinct annotations.Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060957186
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 8/28/1998
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 1,028,633
  • Product dimensions: 6.12 (w) x 9.25 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Shireen Dodson is Special Assistant to the Director, Office of Civil Rights attaché U.S. Department of State. Her second book, One Hundred Books for Girls to Grow On, offers a selection of both new and classic titles, and it serves as a companion to The Mother-Daughter Book Club. She lives in Washington, D.C., and is the mother of three children.

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Read an Excerpt

Alan and Naomi
by Myron Levoy

The specter of the Nazi Holocaust shadows the lives of two 12-year-olds living in New York City in 1944. Alan just wants life to be ordinary, yet his existence is changed forever when a young, Jewish French girl, traumatized by the war and the loss of her father, comes to live in his apartment building, and he reluctantly befriends her. This book is powerful, not only because it deals with the Holocaust, but because it portrays children learning to take responsibility for their own actions and facing the hard truth that things don't always work out.
reading time: 2-3 hours, about 192 pages
themes: prejudice, anti-Semitism, friendship, trust, betrayal,
loss, guilt

Discussion Questions
* When Alan first sees Naomi, she reminds him of a lost puppy. Why does she strike him that way?
* When Alan is reluctant to be friendly to Naomi, his father tells him "In our life, sometimes when we're young, sometimes when we're old, in our life, once or twice, we're called upon to do something we can't do, that we don't want to do, that we won't do. But we do it." What does he mean? Can you think of any situations in your life when you were called upon to do something like that?
* Why do you think Naomi can communicate with Alan's ventriloquist dummy, and through her doll, but not with people?
* Naomi blames herself for her father's death at the hands of the Nazi Gestapo agents. How does that affect how she sees the world and herself?
* What does it mean to be a mensch to Alan's father? To Alan? What qualities or attributes do you think define a mensch?
* Alan is ashamed to be seen with Naomi when his friendShaun is around. Why? How does that make him feel afterwards? Have you ever done that to a friend? How did you feel?
* How does being Naomi's friend change Alan? Why does it affect him that way?
* Why is it important that Alan acknowledges Naomi during one of his stickball games with his friends?
* How do Shaun and Alan misunderstand each other? What consequences does it have for their friendship?
* Why does Alan's fight with Joe Condello cause Naomi to run away? Despite Alan's best efforts, why can't Naomi recover from her war experiences? What do you think will ultimately happen to Naomi?
* Alan says that the Nazis got Naomi as surely as if they had thrown her onto a truck and taken her to a concentration camp. What does he mean? Do you think that's true?

about the author: Myron Levoy was born in New York City, and many of his stories portray the immigrant experience in the early part of this century. His books often depict characters who overcome adversity and whose struggles allow them to grow and become stronger. Alan and Naomi has been published in German and Dutch and in 1992 was made into a film.
Beyond the Book...
map: Look up Nazi resistance in an encylopedia or on the Web. Draw a map of Europe showing where the concentration camps were located, and where the Germans occupied different countries and regions. Read about the Warsaw Ghetto and its uprising.
holocaust museum: If you are from New York or Washington, DC, visit the Holocaust museum near you. If not, write to one and request information about the Holocaust and the exhibits they display. Because I live in Washington, I've had the opportunity to visit the Holocaust museum and found it tremendously moving. The curators have made an effort to personalize the Holocaust experience for patrons of the museum, making it much more real and intimate for people who don't have the Holocaust in their own histories.
music: Naomi responds to music and songs. Go to the library and find a songbook of World War II-era songs, or find a CD of popular tunes from that period, and play some of the songs.
movie: Naomi enjoys a Marx Brothers movie; the physical comedy and slapstick humor transcend any language barrier. Rent one or two of the Marx Brothers' movies to watch together.
refreshments or food mentioned in the book: Serve chocolate bars and cherry soda during your discussion. Or make Alan's father's specialty, eggs scrambled with chopped mushrooms and onions. If you prefer, you can make a "miniature feast" like the one Alan and Naomi have on their picnic, with tiny triple-decker sandwiches with tomatoes and olives, little cakes with lemon, strawberry, and chocolate icing, and small bottles of milk.

If you liked this book, try...
Snow in August, by Pete Hamill--For older readers, it deals with similar themes of how someone survives the Holocaust and adapts to American anti-Semitism.
Anne Frank: Diary of a Young Girl, by Anne Frank--The diary of a young girl's life in hiding during the war, under Nazi occupation.
The Miracle Worker, by William Gibson--The story of Anne Sullivan's teaching of Helen Keller offers insight into how a dedicated and persistent individual can reach someone who, like Naomi, is locked into a world of her own--but for very different reasons.

Some Other Books by Myron Levoy:
The Witch of Fourth Street and Other Stories
The Hanukkah of Great-Uncle Otto
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 31, 2011

    No idea

    Cant say but it mighr be a good book

    1 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 9, 2013

    Cool man

    I m cool man right cool man

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 6, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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