September 28, 2012

Author J.K.Rowling

ISBN: 978-0-7660-2708-4
In 1990, on what was normally a forty-minute train ride to the northern city of Manchester, a four-hour delay provided enough time for Rowling to dream up a story that would change her life. She visualized a scrawny black-haired boy with glasses who did not know he was a wizard. In that one train ride, Rowling thought up many of the characters that would people his world.

She didn't have a pen, so she just sat and thought about her boy-wizard idea for the whole train ride. That evening, she started working on the first Harry Potter book.

The Harry Potter books by J.K. Rowling have delighted children and adults worldwide. However, some people contend that they endorse witchcraft, and they think children should not read them. In J.K. Rowling: Banned, Challenged, and Censored from our Authors of Banned Books series, author Joan Vos MacDonald provides a brief biography of Rowling, analyzes the Harry Potter books, and explores both sides of the argument over censorship.

September 27, 2012

Interesting Facts About Madeleine L'engle

 ISBN: 978-0-7660-2708-4
Madeleine L'Engle is the author of challenged books
 including A Wrinkle in Time and Many Waters. 

Madeleine L'Engle was an only child and was raised with a nanny and governess. She spent most of her lonely childhood eating meals in her room and writing stories, drawing, learning to play the piano, and reading her favorite books.

Against Madeleine's mother's wishes, her English nanny would secretly hide sugar in the bottom of Madeleine's oatmeal bowl.

Madeleine and her parents lived in an apartment in New York City, near Central Park until they moved to Switzerland when Madeleine was twelve years old. They returned to the United States when Madeleine was about fifteen and lived in the family beach house in Florida to be with her paternal grandmother.

As a young child, Madeleine entered a poetry contest and won. Her teachers did not believe that she had written the poem herself, they accused her of copying it. Madeleine's mother went to school carrying examples of the poems, novels, and stories she wrote at home before the teachers would concede that perhaps she did deserve to win the prize. 

As a child, Madeleine's favorite author was Lucy Maud Montgomery, who is best known for her Anne of Green Gables stories. But Madeleine's favorite story was Emily of New Moon because the character, Emily, was also an only child who had difficulty in school and had an ailing father.

For more about Madeleine L'Engle check out our book: Madeleine L'Engle: Banned, Challenged and Censored from our Authors of Banned Books series.

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September 26, 2012

Celebrating Robert Cormier: Author of Banned Books

To celebrate the American Library Association's upcoming Banned Books Week, we're writing about Authors of Banned Books for each post this week.

Today, our spotlight is on Robert Cormier. Cormier, an American author who lived 1925 - 2000, was a lifelong writer most famous for the bestsellers The Chocolate War, I Am the Cheese, and After the First Death.

Cormier's most well-known novel, The Chocolate War, has been appearing on the ALA's top 10 list of most challenged books for over a decade.  While The Chocolate War has been hailed as a profound and beautifully written book for the teen audience; the novel's explicit language, sexuality, and anti-establishment tone have made it the target of frequent ban or censorship attempts.

To find out more about either Robert Cormier or the many challenges faced by his books, check out Enslow Publishers' Robert Cormier: Banned, Challenged, and Censored, by Wendy Hart Beckman provides a thorough biography of Robert Cormier and a full discussion of why The Chocolate War and Cormier's books were banned or challenged.

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September 25, 2012

To Ban or Not to Ban Mark Twain's Works

As a look-ahead to the upcoming recognition of Banned Books Week, let's briefly consider Mark Twain's issues in this arena. Some of the author's works, including The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, outraged certain groups for the books' treatment of race, social mores, and personal character. A considerable portion of Twain's literary and commercial publishing career involved dealing with these and other charges. Over the decades since the publication of Twain's principal works, some of Twain's antagonists demanded the removal his titles from library shelves or offered highly negative, influential criticism of his books. Twain has also had his share of advocates, who have defended his right to write or his perspective on specific topics.

This episode in American literary and social history is a fascinating one, filled with intriguing personalities and contemporary relevance. Enslow Publishers' "Authors of Banned Books" series features writers who have struggled with censorship and book banning. Mark Twain: Banned, Challenged, and Censored provides a thoughtful, age-appropriate perspective on the issues and individuals associated with Twain's controversial works. Author Michelle M. Houle's 160-page book includes a rich lode of source material, further reading options, and succinct definitions of key terms that frame a consideration of censorship and banning.

Mark Twain: Banned, Challenged, and Censored is available in a library-bound edition for $25.95; the price represents a 25% discount from Enslow's list price for this title.

September 24, 2012

Banned Books Week

Library ISBN 978-0-7660-2688-9
Even though Banned Books Week doesn't start until next week, we thought we would blog about it early. Banned Books Week was launched in 1982 after a sudden surge in the number of challenges to books  in school, libraries, and bookstores.

John Steinbeck is one author who has several books added to the banned books list, Of Mice and Men and The Pearl. The Grapes of Wrath has also been a frequent target on this list. Of Mice and Men has been banned for its use of racial slurs, profanity, and violence.

John Steinbeck: Banned, Challenged, and Censored, written for the high school student, discusses East of Eden, The Grapes of Wrath, and Of Mice and Men, and talks about the challenges to these books.

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September 21, 2012

First Day of Autumn

Yup, it has crept up on us again. But doesn't it every year? Saturday is the first day of autumn. Hopefully you've got your rake. You've got your leaf bags. You've got your kids ready to help. But do you have your books about fall? We have two great series about the seasons that give you a choice of the library bound books or the paperback versions, depending upon your needs and budgets. 

These books introduce readers to the seasons, including basic weather conditions and how weather changes. Simple, hands-on investigations using common household items helps readers learn about the weather and seasons. Observing, measuring, comparing, and recording data are all popular techniques used in these activities.
For Grades 3–4
Paperback ISBN:  978-1-59845-388-1 $6.95 
Library Binding ISBN:  978-0-7660-3985-8
$21.26 List $21.26 School/Library: $15.95

When fall arrives, the harvest colors of the season are on display! Color can be found everywhere, in pumpkins, acorns, and of course leaves that are soon to drop from the trees. These books contain sight words and simple sentences to talk about the colors of the seasons.

For PreK–Grade 1
Paperback ISBN: ISBN-13: 978-1-59845-388-1  $6.95
Library Binding ISBN:  978-0-7660-3985-8  List: $21.26 School /Library $15.95

September 20, 2012

Coming Soon...

The highly anticipated The Fortune-Teller: Book II of the Brightstone Saga by Paul B. Thompson, will satisfy the readers' curiosity after reading the first book in this fantasy-fiction trilogy, The Brightworking: Book I of the Brightstone Saga, released earlier this year.
ISBN: 978-0-7660-3950-6
Available Now
In this second book, the mysterious magic increases throughout Mikal's journey and he must fight dangerous creatures in order to keep the secret of the future from the wizard, Harlano. Mikal and his female friend, Lyra, realize that with the power of predictions comes the risk of changing the world forever.
ISBN: 978-0-7660-3983-4
Available January 1, 2013
Here's what people are saying:

"Comfortably predictable fare for younger fans and those who prefer their fantasy charged with standard themes and tropes." –Kirkus Reviews, June 15, 2012

"Mikal, the common-sensible country boy, and Lyra, his 'not entirely trustworthy' new friend, are an irresistible duo. Paul B. Thompson's The Brightworking is as exciting and quirky as any reader could hope."
–Tonya Carter Cook, coauthor of the Dragonlance Elven Exiles Trilogy

The Brightworking: Book I of the Brightstone Saga is available now and can be purchased directly from Enslow, major book distributors, retail bookstores, and online retailers. The Fortune-Teller: Book II of the Brightstone Saga will be available January 1, 2013. You can reserve your copy now at

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September 18, 2012

Additional Spring 2013 titles

Enslow is adding an additional 27 titles to its spring 2013 list.

Animals on the Family Farm is an elementary series geared to early elementary readers. Each book in this 6-title series covers one animal, and shows how the animals live on a real farm.

Our Earth's Oceans is another elementary series covering the physical characteristics, resources, plant and animal life, exploration, and environmental concerns of each of these great bodies of water. This series contains five titles.

Written for the middle school reader, The Civil War Through Primary Sources includes real-life stories, descriptions of major events, and primary-source illustrations to enhance the reader's experience. There are six titles in this series.

Middle school readers will be introduced to each of the seven wonders of the world in this series. This four-book series covers natural wonders of the United States, wonders of the ancient world, wonders of the modern world, and wonders of the natural world.

Exploring Hands-On Science Projects includes hands-on activities that encourage readers to experience science as they learn. These experiments are written by an award-winning author and can be used for science fairs. This is a six book series.

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September 17, 2012

Battle of Antietam's 150th Anniversary and the Emancipation Proclamation

Today marks the 150th anniversary of the American Civil War's Battle of Antietam. This engagement was historically significant for two reasons:
  • It was the single bloodiest day in the five-year conflict
  • The Union victory gave Abraham Lincoln the opportunity to publicly release the Emancipation Proclamation
For young readers learning about this key event and its implications, Enslow provides age-appropriate, historically sound information via a number of titles. The Battle of Antietam is included in author Zachary Kent's 128-page The Civil War: From Fort Sumter to Appomatox. The book, part of Enslow's "The United States at War" series, includes color photographs, a reader-friendly color design, and useful chronology and chapter notes. Each title in the six-book series is available in library-bound editions for $23.95; that price represents a 25% discount from Enslow's list price.

The Battle of Antietam is also included in author Elaine Landau's The Emancipation Proclamation: Would You Do What Lincoln Did? This accessible nonfiction book uses engaging speculative questions at the end of each narrative chapter to add value to the text. Landau's 48-page work, part of Enslow's "What Would You Do?" American history series, includes color and black-and-white illustrations, a timeline, a useful glossary, and further reading suggestions. All titles in the six-book series are aligned to national Common Core standards, as well as specific state standards (including non-Common Core states).

The Emancipation Proclamation: Would You Do What Lincoln Did? is available in a library-bound edition for $17.95. That's a 25% school/library discount from Enslow's list price for library-bound editions. A paperback edition is also available for the list price of $7.95. 

September 13, 2012

National Hispanic Heritage Month

National Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated each year from September 15 to October 15. Why not pair Latin music with our book The Latin Music Scene: The Stars, the Fans, the Music in your celebration?

Library Edition ISBN: 978-0-7660-3399-3
Contains a timeline, a glossary, a further reading list,
Internet addresses, and an index
For more titles that can be used for National Hispanic Heritage Month, visit our Pinterest board.
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September 11, 2012

Books That Explore Security in Post-911 Era

Our awareness of national security and the agencies responsible for it changed after the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States. For young readers curious about how this often-secret world goes about its business, Enslow Publishers offers an age-appropriate, factually solid group of books on this topic.

Our new The Security Agencies of the United States book focuses on the dedicated men and women who often work in the shadows where threats against our country may emerge. Author Tom Streissguth's 104-page work explores the principal agencies, their unique roles, and their many challenges. The school/library price of this 104-page book is $24.95 (that's a 25% discount from Enslow's list price).

Meanwhile, for those curious about the world of espionage and high-tech intelligence work, author Susan K. Mitchell's six-book "The Secret World of Spies" series fills the bill. Each of these 48-page works offer easy, entertaining material that includes memorable true-crime stories, "secret" facts, and photographs that bring these cloak-and-dagger subjects to life. A library-bound edition of each book is available for $17.95; the price represents a 25% discount from Enslow's list price.

Young readers interested to learn more about the events of 9/11 itself can read Enslow's Remembering September 11, 2001: What We Know Now. Writer Mara Miller's skillfully written, factual 112-page overview of that dark day's events, its principal personalities, and the incidents' background, is both accessible and engaging. You can order this library-bound book from Enslow for $23.95; this represents a 25% school/library discount from our list price.

September 10, 2012

It's Deaf Awareness Week

978-0-7660-3771-7 Library Binding
978-1-4644-0156-5 Paperback Binding
Many years ago, I took a sign language class at an adult school after work. Have I used it? Unfortunately not. My main reason for taking it was because I was a volunteer EMT (at that time,) and thought that having a basic knowledge of sign language might help on calls.

When I look at Enslow's new title, What Is Sign Language?, I appreciate the fact that the alphabet is in the book, reminding me of how to create the letters. This 48 page title is geared toward upper elementary readers, giving them some personal stories into the lives of children who are dealing with deafness every day.

978-0-7660-3769-4 Library Binding
978-1-4644-0154-1 Paperback Binding
Another new title, What Is It Like to Be Deaf?, also gives an overview about sign language, but also discusses hearing aids, videophones, and the latest technology that help those who are deaf interact with people. This book includes personal life stories of young children who are deaf.

Both of these titles are available directly from Enslow or your preferred vendor.

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September 07, 2012

Congratulations to our August raffle winner!

Roosevelt Middle School in Springfield City, Ohio is the winner of $100 in free books! Congratulations!

September 06, 2012

Wrapping Up ARCs

 Advance Reader Copies of The Fortune-Teller: Book II of the Brightstone Saga have arrived so today we're busy wrapping them up to send out to our reviewers. This second book in the The Brightstone Saga will be available in January 2013.

September 05, 2012

Serial Science Class Procrastinator? Get a Plan for this Year's Science Experiments!

School is back in session for just about every community in America, and that means kids across the country are thinking about science class.  If you or someone you know is a serial procrastinator when it comes to science class, we've just released a series that can help: Last-Minute Science Projects!

Written by the award-winning, teacher-vetted author Robert Gardner, books in the Last-Minute Science Projects series each contain a collection of experiments that can be set-up and completed in 1 hour or less, 30 minutes or less, 15 minutes or less, or even 5 minutes or less!  Each experiment in the series follows the scientific method, shows a full illustration of the experiment set-up, and instructs readers on exactly how to measure and how to report the results.  Experiments are categorized by how much time they take, so if you're really pressed for time, you can choose one that fits your schedule!

Titles in the "Last-Minute Science Projects" series include:

Atoms and Molecules Experiments Using Ice, Salt, Marbles, and More, with experiments like "Can we Separate Atoms from Molecules?" and "Are There Water Molecules in the Air?"

Electricity and Magnetism Experiments Using Batteries, Bulbs, Wires, and More, containing experiments like "Generate Electricity with a Magnet" and "Make a Simple Electric Motor"

Energy Experiments Using Ice Cubes, Springs, Magnets, and More, with experiments like "How Fast Does Heat Move?" and "Changing Light to Electricity"

Human Body Experiments Using Fingerprints, Hair, Muscles and More with experiments like "How Many Hairs on a Human's Head?" and "How much Air in a Breath?"

Simple Machine Experiments Using Seesaws, Wheels, Pulleys, and More, with "Measuring Work and Friction", "Double-Pulley, a Simple Machine", and other experiments

Solids, Liquids, and Gases Experiments Using Water, Air, Marbles and More, with experiments like "Climbing Liquids" and "Weighing Air"

September 04, 2012

Enslow Cheerleading Books Ready for Football Season

Early September means football season, both in schools and public libraries. This high-interest sport offers many books for young readers to explore. While there are many books on athletes and sports teams, books that go "outside the lines" of the sport also draw interest. One such activity is cheerleading. A sport in its own right, cheerleading includes both genders, extends across various age levels, and embraces many positive, character building attributes.

Enslow Publishers' "Ready, Set, Cheer!" series offers page-turning books that get to the heart of cheer. Author Lisa Mullarkey's clear, age-appropriate style delivers a nifty counterpoint to the series' reader-friendly design and full-color photos. Suitable for grades 3 and 4, these Guided Reading Level "M" works provide a wonderful entry point for readers (especially reluctant readers) wanting to explore this rewarding activity.

Each title in this four-book series is available in a library-bound edition for $17.95; that price represents a 25% discount to institutional buyers. Paperback versions of "Ready, Set, Cheer!" is also available for $7.95 per title.