Librarians announce 2017-2018 Horned Toad Tales reading list

March 9, 2017

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District librarians on the Horned Toad Tales committee take a photo after they finished voting on the 2017-2018 list. Pictured (clockwise from left) are: Karen Wetzig, Alana Wilkin, Karen Womack, Laura Bissey, Deb Jones, Liz Budnek, Gina Moss, Jennifer Buchert, Kim Katz, Debbie Hall and Pattie Lane.

March 9, 2017—CFISD elementary librarians released the 12th annual Horned Toad Tales list—a list of 20 recommended books for students in grades 3-5 for the 2017-2018 school year—in the spring.

After a yearlong evaluation process and hundreds of books read, the following books featuring a 2015 or 2016 copyright date were chosen for the Horned Toad Tales list:

  • Class Dismissed by Allan Woodrow;
  • Danger! Tiger Crossing by Lin Oliver;
  • Full of Beans by Jennifer Holm;
  • The Great Pet Escape by Victoria Jamieson;
  • The Great Shelby Homes by Elizabeth Eulberg;
  • Gooseberry Park and the Master Plan by Cynthia Rylant;
  • The Key to Extraordinary by Natalie Lloyd;
  • Liberty by Kirby Lawson;
  • Lincoln and Kennedy: A Pair to Compare by Gene Barretta;
  • The Lincoln Project by Dan Gutman;
  • The Marvelous Thing That Came From A Spring: The Accidental Invention of The Toy That Swept the Nation by Gilbert Ford;
  • Miss Mary Reporting: The True Story of Sportswriter Mary Garber by Sue Macy;
  • A New Class by Jarrett Krosoczka;
  • Pax by Sara Pennypacker;
  • Pink Is For Blobfish: Discovering the World’s Perfectly Pink Animals by Jess Keating;
  • Seven and a Half Tons of Steel by Janet Nolan;
  • Teddy Mars: Almost a World Record Breaker by Molly B. Burnham;
  • When Mischief Came to Town by Katrina Nannestad;
  • The Wild Robot by Peter Brown; and
  • Wish by Barbara O’Connor.

The books underwent a detailed nomination process by the 11-member Horned Toad Tales committee. If a book was nominated, all committee members read it and voted on it. The list will be published and distributed to all elementary librarians, who stock the books in their school libraries and include them on the following year’s “Name That Book” list. The list is available to view on the CFISD website.

The following 11 librarians comprise the Horned Toad Tales committee:

  • Debbie Hall, Millsap Elementary School (committee chair);
  • Kim Katz, Moore Elementary School;
  • Laura Bissey, Willbern Elementary School;
  • Jennifer Buchert, Copeland Elementary School;
  • Karen Wetzig, Lee Elementary School;
  • Karen Womack, Matzke Elementary School;
  • Deb Jones, Gleason Elementary School;
  • Gina Moss, Warner Elementary School;
  • Liz Budnek, Keith Elementary School;
  • Pattie Lane, Tipps Elementary School (retired);
  • Alana Wilkin, Duryea Elementary School.


“It is always an exciting day when the committee gets together to vote for our favorite nominated books,” said Debbie Hall, Millsap librarian and committee chair. “When that first book is ‘voted’ onto the list, we can’t help but cheer! The librarians on this committee are so dedicated to finding the right books and of course we each have our favorites. We really can’t wait to see what the students in grades 3-5 have to say about the upcoming 2017-2018 HTT list and what books will become their favorites.”

This list is developed by the HTT Committee comprised of CFISD elementary school librarians in hopes of promoting the lifelong joy of reading. These books are of a standard that is deemed appropriate for students in grades 3-5.

Students who read five of the 20 books (or have the books read to them) get to vote for their favorite book in February of each year. The Horned Toad Tales committee contacts the author of the winning book and sends him/her a horned toad trophy.

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