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HPL Kids

The Kidzone has programs galore as well as books, movies, and other cool stuff. Read our blog below for more information and check out our upcoming events to get an idea of what's happening at the Kidzone! Our main phone number is 205.444.7830.

Recent Book Reviews

Horten's Incredible Illusions: Magic, Mystery & Another Very Strange Adventure
Lula Bell on Geekdom, Freakdom & the Challenges of Bad Hair
A Mutiny in Time
Starry River of the Sky
Pickle: The (Formerly) Anonymous Prank Club of Fountain Point Middle School
Iron Hearted Violet
Jake and Lily
Paris Pan Takes the Dare
Me and the Pumpkin Queen
Read All About It!
The Boy on Cinnamon Street
Nerd Camp
The Classroom
Smells Like Dog
Mission Unstoppable
On the Road to Mr. Mineo's
The Mark of Athena
A Whole Lot of Lucky
Alien on a Rampage
One for the Murphys

More of our favorite books on GoodReads »

Kidzone Blog

Do you know the song Big Girls Don't Cry by Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons?  It is so catchy.  And so high.  And so WRONG.  Of course girls cry sometimes.  Big girls, small girls, all girls.  And what about boys?  Do they cry?  You better believe it.

Big Boys Cry by Jonty Howley
It's Levi's first day at a new school, and he's scared. His father tries to comfort Levi by telling him "Big boys don't cry." Though the father immediately understands his misstep, he can't find the words to comfort his son, and Levi leaves for school, still in need of reassurance.  Fortunately, along his walk to school, Levi sees instance after instance of grown men openly expressing their sadness and fear. His learned mantra, "Big boys don't cry," slowly weakens, and by the time he's at school he releases a tear. Once he's there, things aren't so bad after all, and on his walk home he sees everyone he's encountered earlier, feeling better now that they expressed their emotions. Upon his arrival home, he finds his father waiting for him on their porch, tears in his eyes. His father is able to admit that he was scared and the two embrace, closer than before.

Jonty Howley's gorgeous debut paints the world we wish existed for our boys, and offers a path there! This story is the truest interpretation of the notion that we should "let boys be boys": let them express the full range of their emotions, vulnerable parts and all!

The first Sunday in August is your chance to show your appreciation for that unique bond only sisters can understand.  August 4, 2019 is National Sisters Day!  My sister Laurie, AKA the Goose, will definitely be getting a call from me when I get off work today.  She's a librarian and a former tennis player, so I know she'll appreciate the book I'm highlighting for this holiday's blog.

Sisters: Venus and Serena Williams by Jeanette Winter (04/02/19)
Before they were famous tennis stars, Venus and Serena Williams were sisters with big dreams growing up in Compton, California. In the early mornings, they head to the tennis courts, clean up debris, and practice. They compete in their first tournament and they both win. From there, the girls’ trophy collection grows and grows. Despite adversity and health challenges, the sisters become two of the greatest tennis players of all time. This inspiring story of sisterhood, hard work, and determination is perfect for budding athletes or any young reader with a big dream.

Ahoy, matey!  Here, there be brand-new pirate books.  Perfect for sea dogs and landlubbers alike.

Arrr, Mustache Baby! by Bridget Heos
Give Me Back My Bones by Kim Norman
Pirate Chicken: All Hens on Deck by Brian Yanish
We're Going on a Treasure Hunt by Kelly Dipucchio

Adventure Time: Marceline the Pirate Queen by Leah Williams
Bots: 20,000 Robots Under the Sea by Russ Bolts

The Adventurer's Guide to Treasure (and How to Steal It) by Wade Albert White
The Castle in the Sea by Mardi McConnichie
Emily Windsnap and the Pirate Prince by Liz Kessler

The universe is endless, but Summer Reading at Hoover Public Library is not.  The LAST DAY that kids and teens can earn tickets, redeem them for prizes, or enter their names in any of the grand prize drawings is FRIDAY, AUGUST 2, 2019.  The library is open 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. on that day.

Summer Reading 2019 is winding down, but that doesn't mean you have to stop reading for the rest of summer.  Why don't you create your own summer reading challenge between now and when school starts back?  I found some great suggestions at

1. See how many different (and unusual) places can you read: on a trampoline, under a table, in a closet with a flashlight.  I bet you'll have even more (and better) ideas.

2. Read a different book by the same author or illustrator every day for a week.

3. Read a picture book or graphic novel, then continue the story with your own artwork.

4. Create a paper chain to keep track of how many books you read.  Write a mini book review on each of the links.

5. Read a book in a different genre every day: mystery, biography, graphic novel, poetry, nonfiction -- there are so many choices!

6. Read a wordless picture book, then write your own text for each page.

7. Read a book about the beach on the beach . . . or on a towel in the living room.

8. Read books with covers that match every color in the rainbow.

9. Read a book to someone else: a parent, a sibling, a pet, or even a stuffed animal.

10. Read books with main characters that are different from you.