Library Closed for Memorial Day

Both locations of the Cedar Rapids Public Library will be closed on Sunday, May 26 and Monday, May 27, in observance of the Memorial Day holiday. 

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Alison Gowans
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Aug. 10, 2023 – School is starting all too soon, so we collected recommendations for school stories from library staff. From magic schools to young love to school field trips gone wrong, this list has picture books, middle grade, and young adult recommendations. Stay tuned next week for school stories for adults!

Scroll through the list below and click the titles to put the books on hold in our catalog today. 

"How Do Dinosaurs Go to School?" by Jane Yolen

"As it turns out, it can be very hard for a dinosaur to follow all of the rules that help make a classroom run smoothly! Children will enjoy the classic dino antics and correcting the dinosaurs on how to behave well."

"Pete the Cat: Rocking in My School Shoes" by Eric Litwin

"This book helps introduce children to different rooms and activities they may participate in at school. I appreciate the interactivity and guessing elements that get children participating with the story!"

- Tara Carrera-Bauer, Programming Librarian


"Small Spaces" by Katherine Arden

"A deliciously atmospheric novel for middle grade about a school field trip gone wrong."

- Jessica Duffy, Patron Services Specialist


"Because of Mr. Terupt" by Rob Buyea

"It’s a great novel about and directed towards late-elementary age kids. I recall it being an engaging, dramatic, and heartfelt story; it uses the perspectives of seven different students to illustrate the impact of a caring teacher."

-Carter Fitzgerald, Summer Seasonal


"Say What You Will" by Cammie McGovern

"I read this several years ago, but I remember enjoying the new perspective of a teen with a very different way of experiencing the world than me."

- Amy Golly, Programming Librarian


"Heartstopper" by Alice Oseman

The second season of the TV-show based on this heartwarming series just dropped on Netflix, which makes it the perfect time to dive into the graphic novel. 'Heartstopper' tells the tale of two British boys as they navigate school, friendships, coming-of-age, and, of course, falling in love."

- Alison Gowans, Content Writer


"All are Welcome" by Alexandra Penfold

"'All Are Welcome,' by Alexandra Penfold, is a perfect back-to-school picture book that celebrates the diversity and inclusion of students of all backgrounds and cultures. Vibrant illustrations and welcoming rhymes make this an enjoyable read-aloud for the whole family."

- Renee Greenlee, Programming Librarian


"Upside-Down Magic" by Sarah Mlynowski

"I recommend this magical series to anyone who feels like they don't fit in.  The author creates a wonderful storyline about how important it is to teach every child in a way that works best for them and their unique abilities."

- Elysha Holley, Patron Services Specialist


"Amari and the Night Brothers" by B.B. Alston

"Takes that Harry Potter formula and updates it for a much more nuanced take. Amari is a young Black girl who discovers her brother has given her a gift, and the journey she takes to use that gift is definitely worth the read."

"The Golden Compass" by Philip Pullman

"For those 'dark academia' lovers out there. Olde British-style colleges filled to the brim with mystery and magic (and bears!)"

- Zachary LeBoeuf, Public Service Associate