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Friends of the Libraries: Resources available for children's books of all levels

May 31, 2012|By Mary Ellen Goddard

You may have read Monday's article in the Los Angeles Times about James Patterson and his goal to steer children to reading.

He considers himself "an evangelist for reading who believes in the power of reading to improve the school experience and transform them into better citizens leading quality lives."

I was unaware that he wrote children's books as well as novels for adults, so it was a pleasant surprise to see that he has written children's books that are on the New York Times bestseller list.

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And he has a website, ReadKiddoRead, which offers book suggestions for children ranging from infants to 18-year-olds. I was happy to see that even for the youngest children (birth to 8 years old) the books are divided into three or four levels of "Great Illustrated Books" and also "Just the Facts" books.

Knowing that not all children read at the same level, the "Great Transition Books" are for ages 5 to 10 years old. "Great Pageturners Books" are for ages 8 and 9, and "Great Advanced Books" are for 9 and up.

Further divisions are "Action/Adventure/Mystery," "Real World Fiction" and "Fantasy and Other Worlds," so those searching can find what they want faster.

Of course, there are also other helpful websites, and you can always ask your library's children's librarian to suggest books. Sources like this are great when trying to find books for your children or grandchildren, nephews and nieces, either to check out at the library or to purchase at a book store.

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Finding a writer's agent

The last session in a series for writers will be from 7 to 8:30 p.m. June 21 at the Neighborhood Community Center, 1845 Park Ave., Costa Mesa.

Handling rejection and "if at first you don't succeed…." will be discussed in depth, with examples of what to expect when you are hoping for the best.

From experiences as a would-be actress, tour guide, graphic artist, and newspaper reporter to award-winning author, Jeri Westerson knows first-hand the long and sometimes agonizing process of finding that light at the end of the tunnel.

A $25 check payable to the Costa Mesa Library Foundation and mailed to Box 2864, Costa Mesa, CA, 92628 will register you. Or visit http://www.costamesalibraryfoundation.org and register online.

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At the Costa Mesa Donald Dungan Library

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