Book Reviews by Christina Matekel-Gibson

Beginning Reader Titles in the Children's Department.

Summer Reading 2021 has come to a close at the Joplin Public…

"All Thirteen: The Incredible Cave Rescue of the Thai Boys' Soccer Team" by Christina Soontornvat

The library is always a great place to be, but it has been especially…

FRONT DESK by Kelly Yang

If you have seen the movie “Elf,” you are familiar with the…

WHEN YOU TRAP A TIGER by Tae Keller & WE ARE WATER PROTECTORS by Carole Lindstrom

I know the actual Super Bowl just happened, but I did not watch…

My Favorite Picture Books and Middle Grade of 2020

The year 2020 was a great year for books. I reviewed many of…

Reading for Change: Books by Black Authors

All of these titles can be found via the JPL catalog Picture…

"A Polar Bear in the Snow" by Mac Barnett & "In the Half Room" by Carson Ellis

2020 has been a roller coaster of a year, but books have been…

Mac B. Kid Spy by Mac Barnett and The Only Black Girls in Town by Brandy Colbert

Sometimes you just want to read a good mystery. In fact, I would…

"You Matter" by Christian Robinson and "Everyone's Awake" by Colin Meloy

I am bursting with picture book recommendations! The last few…

Priya Dreams of Marigolds and Masala by Meenal Patel

Did you know that May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month?…

BIG PAPA AND THE TIME MACHINE by Daniel Bernstrom

It’s been a while since I rounded up my favorite picture books…

Never Caught, the story of Ona Judge by Erica Armstrong Dunbar & Kathleen Van Cleve

In preparing for the library’s Black History Month celebration…

Why? by Adam Rex and Claire Keane & Saturday by Oge Mora

The end of the year is always a scramble to chip away at my TBR…

THEY CALL ME GUERO by David Bowles/DANCING HANDS by Margarita Engle

Twelve-year-old Guero (a lifelong nickname referring to his pale…

MEET YASMIN by Saadia Faruqi & Bilal Cooks Daal by Aisha Saeed

Youth activist Marley Dias was inspired to begin her #1000BlackGirlBooks…

The Parker Inheritance by Varian Johnson

As I mentioned in my most recent review, I challenged myself…

Finding Langston by Lesa Cline-Ransome

This February, I challenged myself to read all of the Coretta…

Diverse Picture Books

I started this week's review with another novel in mind, but…

There, There by Tommy Orange

In "THERE, THERE" by TOMMY ORANGE, 12 strangers make plans to…

Piecing Me Together by Renee Watson

Writing about social justice issues can be difficult when the…

Betty Before X by Ilyasah Shabazz with Renee Watson

Before Betty Shabazz became an activist, educator, mother and…

Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

Aza Holmes is a little bit insufferable, but don't we all have…