“Lockdown”: Disgustingly Superb Short Stories


“Lockdown: Stories of Crime, Terror, and Hope During a Pandemic” is a set of twenty excellent short stories dealing with the terrible effects of pandemics and lockdowns on both normal and abnormal human beings — and on normal people who become abnormal as the result of attempting to cope with viral plagues. The editors, Nick Kolakowski and Steve Waddle, have done a fine job of collecting and presenting the material; the stories range in intensity from quite intense to horrifyingly compelling.

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‘Teeny Weenies’ are the new collections of short stories that kids love by David Lubar

Wonderful children’s author David Lubar has two new collections of short stories, “Teeny Weenies: The Intergalactic Petting Zoo” and “Teeny Weenies: Freestyle Frenzy.” Kids love the original Weenie series like “Strikeout of the Bleacher Weenies,” which are perfect for older middle grade readers. In this new “Teeny Weenie” series, the stories are great for younger kids in first grade and higher. The stories are a bit shorter and simpler to follow, yet still filled with Lubar’s clever wit and bizarre imagination.

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‘Love Can Be: A Literary Collection About Our Animals’ Is Filled with Beautiful Stories about the Creatures Who Fill our Lives with Beauty

love can be

“Love Can Be” is a touching and creative collection of writing about animals and our connections to them. The contributors include Joyce Carol Oates, Delia Ephron, S. E. Hinton, and Reyna Grande. The stories vary in content from Dean Koontz sharing a story about his much-loved dog Trixie, to Reyna Grande discussing monarch butterflies and comparing their long migration to her life. Both stories share the beauty and mystery of our love for animals.

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‘The Creativity Project: An Awesome Story Collection’ Is Edited by Colby Sharp and Perfect for Short Story Readers and Teachers


“The Creativity Project: An Awesome Story Collection” is edited by brilliant teacher Colby Sharp, who is also a blogger and important advocate for children’s literature. He started the Nerdy Book Club with other book-loving educators, and the group has become hugely respected in the literary world of children’s books.

This book is Sharp’s debut in publishing, and a fabulous debut it is. The idea is brilliant: Forty-four artists (authors and illustrators) were invited to provide two prompts for writing or illustrating ideas. The prompts could be anything — written or drawn. Each participant was then provided with two other prompts (anonymously) from which they could choose to respond. The unused prompts are collected at the end of the book for readers and teachers to use and play with.

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‘Strikeout of the Bleacher Weenies’ by David Lubar is filled with quirky, creepy tales for kids


“Strikeout of the Bleacher Weenies and Other Warped and Creepy Tales” is by prolific author David Lubar. He alternates between writing for middle grade readers and young adult readers and is able to shape his writing to best suit each age group.

In his “Weenies” series, he compiles groups of short stories that range in subject matter, including: a time traveling baseball game to a Mayan game where the winners are sacrificed; a girl whose face causes instant death once seen — for an unusual reason; dreams that don’t go the way they should; a magic performance that certainly doesn’t end as it should; another magic performance that does; and lots more warped (really, it’s even in the title!), weird, wacky and wild tales that middle grade students will adore.

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