307W: Shout

I am looking for a “picture book” for older students.  It was probably published between 2002 and 2012.  It is narrated by an African American girl who tells the story of going to church with her mama. The book is written in poetry and is beautifully illustrated.  I think it has the word “shout” in its title.  Here are the last 9 lines of the text:


I can still hear a myriad of

African musicians playing

On our shoulder, on our heartstrings

And we, still spirit-touched in

Our modern dance, move

Onward, upward, reaching

Til we’re tracing back through time

The same steps, that same familiar…




307N: Expat parents killed in Africa


Published pre 2006, probably UK author.

In the prologue, a UK expat family is somewhere in Africa, and the parents are suddenly killed, I think in a helicopter crash that turns out not to be an accident.  The children sounded interesting, but they aren’t very relevant to the rest of the story.

The rest of the story focuses on a single male protagonist, in his 30s or 40s, probably the brother of the woman who was killed.  He is drawn into some international conspiracy, is at some physical peril, and solves things.

I thought it was by Sam Llewellyn but I can’t find it on his website.  It has that kind of feel – like Sam Llewellyn or Dick Francis or the Canadian Jon Evans, a likeable but lonely amateur accidentally falling into a crime network.

In the mass market paperback edition I read in Canada in the late 1990s or early 2000s, the cover might have had a silhouette of a tree on a yellowish sky, and the title might have been Under the (some variety of exotic) Tree.

306P: Above a converted red barn

I’m trying to locate the title and copy of a book from my childhood. I purchased it at a book fair at my elementary school in Chicago when I was between the ages of 8-10. 1988-1990. Maybe a scholastic title since they sponsored our books fairs and sales?

The book was about a family that lived above a converted red barn, kept livestock and were apple/orchard farmers (not the red barn book)! Beautiful pictures, almost like watercolors, that depicted the family in winter/ maybe fall. Father mother daughter, maybe more kids, based in New England or upper Midwest area. I’ve been searching for several years.

Thanks for your time

306E: The rabbit that gave all of their clothes away in the cold

My children want to find this book that I read to them. The cover was deep blue with the rabbit on the cover, in a snowy nighttime setting. Over the course of the book, the rabbit (as I recall, you are never sure if it’s a he or she) gives away maybe food, definitely shoes, coat, scarf, etc to others in need. Sadly the rabbit freezes to death, but then maybe you see the rabbit in the starry sky? Not an old book, probably written in 80s or 90s. Very simple drawings, cartoon like, not realistic. Anyone remember?  Title might have indicated it was a book about giving. Thanks

303X: Concise Contemporary Novel Featuring a Special House and a Leather-Bound Book

A contemporary fiction book in the published in the early 2000s, this book by a male author had a male main character.  It centered around a special house, a beloved house, that the main character wanted to own or live in.  At some point a leather-bound book was a major plot point and the leather-bound book was hidden in the house, or possibly the walls of the house, and later found.  The novel had beautiful language, and was very tightly written.

Thank you so much for your help!

303C: Beauty and the Beast fiction anthology

I’m hunting down a fiction anthology that involved “Beauty and the Beast” riffs. One of the riffs involved a perfect couple (I think New Yorkers) with a perfect life–and the wife was slowly beginning to think that her beautiful, flawless, successful, doting husband had a terrible double life as a beast in a city reeling from a series of bloody, violent attacks. I’m fairly sure it was published in softcover in the late 1980s to mid 1990s. One detail that really stands out to me is that when the husband came home late one night, the wife noticed a drop of blood on his cheek and realized that he was the beast–which left her in a whole bunch of serious dilemmas, most of which were left as cliffhangers. This was only one of many stories in the book, but it really left an impression. If I recall correctly, most of the writers in the anthology were women. I was way into Sheri S. Tepper and other female authors at the time, if that helps, but I don’t think it was her story collection “Beauty.” I hope you can find it! Thanks 🙂

297T: Illustrated Children’s book with the theme ” You can choose”

Illustrated Children’s book with the theme ” You can choose”. We had this book in the late 1980s/ early 1990s. It was square with a yellow hardcover with a cartoonish girl/boy on it. Book was about 20 pages ( 10 layouts with different scenes where the boy and girl make different choices between colours and objects etc. ). Each scene ends with a phrase similar to ” You can chose”. Very repetitious. One scene has them in a classroom. Size of book 20cm x 20cm. I know it is not the following books “If I could choose” or “Which one would you choose”.

296F: Teen Overeats on Holiday Vacation Due to Parents’ Divorce

I read this young adult novel in the early 1990s at my local library. It seemed like it was relatively recently published at the time. I believe that it was a first person story, about a teenage girl who is either on Thanksgiving or Christmas break from school. Her parents tell her they are getting divorced, and she starts secretly overeating all of the leftovers from either the Thanksgiving or Christmas meal. She is writing in her journal, feeling isolated, and having some weighty conversations with her parents–particularly her dad, if I remember correctly–all while developing an unhealthy relationship to food. The book ends with her swearing off of the overeating, and taking walks in the snow to lose all of the weight she gained over the holiday vacation.