About Battle of the Books

  • Our Battle of the Books team is made up of 4th and 5th grade students.  

    Students try ouBattle of the Books logo with books t for the team by taking a comprehension test on a designated book from the reading list and completing a title and author matching section.  Being on the Battle of the Books team is a privilege, and our team members represent our school when we go off to Preliminary Competition and then hopefully onto District Competition, as well.  

    Tryouts will be held within the first month of school, and after school practices will begin no later than the first week of October.  Do you meet the following criteria?

    • You're a fourth or fifth grade student.
    • You love to read.
    • You can handle a fast-paced and substantial workload.
    • You are willing to stay after school from 3:15 to 4:30 one to two days per week. (We begin practicing on Tuesdays, but add on Thursday practices, as well, beginning in January.)
    • You're responsible and follow your 3 Be's--not just at school, but everywhere you go!

    If that sounds like you, then start reading and preparing for tryouts in September!  We'll notify everyone who is planning to try out of the book being tested on about a week and a half to two weeks before tryouts, so covering more of the list gives you better odds to be prepared!  Check out the books we'll be reading for the 2020-21 season below! 

2020-21 EBOB Book List

  • Among the Hidden

    by Margaret Peterson Haddix Year Published: 2002

    In a future where the Population Police enforce the law limiting a family to only two children, Luke, an illegal third child, has lived all his twelve years in isolation and fear on his family's farm in this start to the Shadow Children series from Margaret Peterson Haddix.

    Luke has never been to school. He's never had a birthday party, or gone to a friend's house for an overnight. In fact, Luke has never had a friend.

    Luke is one of the shadow children, a third child forbidden by the Population Police. He's lived his entire life in hiding, and now, with a new housing development replacing the woods next to his family's farm, he is no longer even allowed to go outside.

    Then, one day Luke sees a girl's face in the window of a house where he knows two other children already live. Finally, he's met a shadow child like himself. Jen is willing to risk everything to come out of the shadows -- does Luke dare to become involved in her dangerous plan? Can he afford not to?

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  • Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library

    by Chris Grabenstein Year Published: 2013

    When Kyle learns that the world's most famous game maker, Luigi Lemoncello, has designed the town's new library and is having an invitation-only lock-in on opening night, he's determined to be there! But the tricky part isn't getting into the library—it's getting out. Because when morning comes, the doors stay locked. Kyle and the other kids must solve every clue and figure out every secret puzzle to find the hidden escape route! 

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  • The Hero Two Doors Down

    by Sharon Robinson Year Published: 2017

    Based on the true story of a boy in Brooklyn who became neighbors and friends with his hero, Jackie Robinson.

    Stephen Satlow is an eight-year-old boy living in Brooklyn, New York, which means he only cares about one thing-the Dodgers. Steve and his father spend hours reading the sports pages and listening to games on the radio. Aside from an occasional run-in with his teacher, life is pretty simple for Steve.

    But then Steve hears a rumor that an African American family is moving to his all-Jewish neighborhood. It's 1948 and some of his neighbors are against it. Steve knows this is wrong. His hero, Jackie Robinson, broke the color barrier in baseball the year before.

    Then it happens -- Steve's new neighbor is none other than Jackie Robinson! Steve is beyond excited about living two doors down from the Robinson family. He can't wait to meet Jackie. This is going to be the best baseball season yet! How many kids ever get to become friends with their hero?

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  • Kenny & the Dragon

    by Tony DiTerlizzi Year Published: 2010

    Kenny is a little rabbit with a very big problem. His two best friends are heading into a battle of legendary proportions—with each other! In one corner there’s Grahame, a well-read and cultured dragon with sophisticated tastes. In the other there’s George, a retired knight and dragon slayer who would be content to spend the rest of his days in his bookshop. Neither really wants to fight, but the village townsfolk are set on removing Grahame from their midst and calling George out of retirement. Can Kenny avert disaster?

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  • The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl

    by Stacy McAnulty Year Published: 2018

    Lucy Callahan was struck by lightning. She doesn't remember it, but it changed her life forever. The zap gave her genius-level math skills, and ever since, Lucy has been homeschooled. Now, at 12 years old, she's technically ready for college. She just has to pass 1 more test--middle school!

    Lucy's grandma insists: Go to middle school for 1 year. Make 1 friend. Join 1 activity. And read 1 book (that's not a math textbook!). Lucy's not sure what a girl who does calculus homework for fun can possibly learn in 7th grade. She has everything she needs at home, where nobody can make fun of her rigid routines or her superpowered brain. The equation of Lucy's life has already been solved. Unless there's been a miscalculation?

    A celebration of friendship, Stacy McAnulty's smart and thoughtful middle-grade debut reminds us all to get out of our comfort zones and embrace what makes us different.

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  • Not If I Can Help It

    by Carolyn Mackler Year Published: 2019

    Willa likes certain things to be certain ways. Her socks have to be soft...and definitely can't have irritating tags on the inside. She loves the crunch of popcorn and nachos...but is grossed out by the crunch of a baby carrot. And slimy foods? Those are the worst.

    Willa can manage all these things -- but there are some things she can't deal with, like her father's big news. He's been keeping a big secret from her...that he's been dating the mom of Willa's best friend Ruby. Willa does NOT like the idea of them being together. And she does NOT like the idea of combining families. And she does NOT like the idea of her best friend becoming her sister overnight. Will she go along with all of these changes? NOT if she can help it!

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  • Pax

    by Sara Pennypacker Year Published: 2019

    Pax and Peter have been inseparable ever since Peter rescued him as a kit. But one day, the unimaginable happens: Peter's dad enlists in the military and makes him return the fox to the wild.

    At his grandfather's house, three hundred miles away from home, Peter knows he isn't where he should be—with Pax. He strikes out on his own despite the encroaching war, spurred by love, loyalty, and grief, to be reunited with his fox.

    Meanwhile Pax, steadfastly waiting for his boy, embarks on adventures and discoveries of his own.

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  • Soft Rain: A Story of the Cherokee Trail of Tears

    by Cornelia Cornelissen Year Published: 1999

    It all begins when Soft Rain's teacher reads a letter stating that as of May 23, 1838, all Cherokee people are to leave their land and move to what many Cherokees called "the land of darkness". . .the west. Soft Rain is confident that her family will not have to move, because they have just planted corn for the next harvest but soon thereafter, soldiers arrive to take nine-year-old, Soft Rain, and her mother to walk the Trail of Tears, leaving the rest of her family behind. 
     
    Because Soft Rain knows some of the white man's language, she soon learns that they must travel across rivers, valleys, and mountains. On the journey, she is forced to eat the white man's food and sees many of her people die. Her courage and hope are restored when she is reunited with her father, a leader on the Trail, chosen to bring her people safely to their new land.

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  • Turtle in Paradise

    by Jennifer L. Holm Year Published: 2011

    Life isn't like the movies. But then again, 11-year-old Turtle is no Shirley Temple. She's smart and tough and has seen enough of the world not to expect a Hollywood ending. After all, it's 1935 and jobs and money and sometimes even dreams are scarce. So when Turtle's mama gets a job housekeeping for a lady who doesn't like kids, Turtle says goodbye without a tear and heads off to Key West, Florida to live with relatives she's never met. Florida's like nothing Turtle's ever seen before though. It's hot and strange, full of rag tag boy cousins, family secrets, scams, and even buried pirate treasure! Before she knows what's happened, Turtle finds herself coming out of the shell she's spent her life building, and as she does, her world opens up in the most unexpected ways.

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  • The Very, Very Far North

    by Dan Bar-el Year Published: 2020

    In the Very, Very Far North, past the Cold, Cold Ocean and just below the hill that looks like a baby whale, you’ll find Duane and his friends.

    Duane is a sweet and curious young bear who makes friends with everyone he meets—whether they’re bossy, like Major Puff the puffin, or a bit vain, like Handsome the musk ox, or very, very shy, like Boo the caribou. For these arctic friends, every day is a new adventure!

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  • Walls Within Walls

    by Maureen Sherry Year Published: 2012

    After their father, a video-game inventor, strikes it rich, the Smithfork kids find they hate their new life. They move from their cozy Brooklyn neighborhood to a swanky apartment on Manhattan's Fifth Avenue. They have no friends, a nanny who takes the place of their parents, and a school year looming ahead that promises to be miserable.

    And then, one day, Brid, CJ, and Patrick discover an astonishing secret about their apartment: The original owner, the deceased multimillionaire Mr. Post, long ago turned the apartment itself into a giant puzzle containing a mysterious book and hidden panels—a puzzle that, with some luck, courage, and brainpower, will lead to discovering the Post family fortune.

    Unraveling the mystery causes them to race through today's New York City—and to uncover some long-hidden secrets of the past.

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  • Where the Mountain Meets the Moon

    by Grace Lin Year Published: 2009

    In the valley of Fruitless mountain, a young girl named Minli lives in a ramshackle hut with her parents. In the evenings, her father regales her with old folktales of the Jade Dragon and the Old Man on the Moon, who knows the answers to all of life's questions. Inspired by these stories, Minli sets off on an extraordinary journey to find the Old Man on the Moon to ask him how she can change her family's fortune. She encounters an assorted cast of characters and magical creatures along the way, including a dragon who accompanies her on her quest for the ultimate answer.

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  • Where the Watermelons Grow

    by Cindy Baldwin Year Published: 2018

    When twelve-year-old Della Kelly finds her mother furiously digging black seeds from a watermelon in the middle of the night and talking to people who aren't there, Della worries that it’s happening again—that the sickness that put her mama in the hospital four years ago is back. That her mama is going to be hospitalized for months like she was last time.

    With her daddy struggling to save the farm and her mama in denial about what’s happening, it’s up to Della to heal her mama for good. And she knows just how she’ll do it: with a jar of the Bee Lady’s magic honey, which has mended the wounds and woes of Maryville, North Carolina, for generations.

    But when the Bee Lady says that the solution might have less to do with fixing Mama’s brain and more to do with healing her own heart, Della must learn that love means accepting her mama just as she is.

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  • Wildfire

    by Rodman Philbrick Year Published: 2019

    Flames race toward Sam Castine's summer camp as evacuation buses are loading, but Sam runs back to get his phone. Suddenly, a flash of heat blasts him as pine trees explode. Now a wall of fire separates Sam from his bus, and there's only one thing to do: Run for his life. Run or die.

    Lungs burning, Sam's only goal is to keep moving. Drought has made the forest a tinderbox, and Sam struggles to remember survival tricks he learned from his late father. Then, when he least expects it, he encounters Delphy, an older girl who is also lost. Their unlikely friendship grows as they join forces to find civilization.

    The pace never slows, and eventually flames surround Sam and Delphy on all sides. A powerful bond is forged that can only grow out of true hardship -- as two true friends beat all odds and outwit one of the deadliest fires ever.

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  • Wish

    by Barbara O'Connor Year Published: 2016

    Eleven-year-old Charlie Reese has been making the same secret wish every day since fourth grade. She even has a list of all the ways there are to make the wish, such as cutting off the pointed end of a slice of pie and wishing on it as she takes the last bite. But when she is sent to the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina to live with family she barely knows, it seems unlikely that her wish will ever come true. That is until she meets
    Wishbone, a skinny stray dog who captures her heart, and Howard, a neighbor boy who proves surprising in lots of ways. Suddenly Charlie is in serious danger of discovering that what she thought she wanted may not be what she needs at all.

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