When his father takes a new job in Massachusetts, Ben Moroney must leave behind his best friend Tony, a western banded gecko named Lenny, and worst of all, the desert home he has loved and explored.
Ben’s adjustment to his new environment is not going well until he unexpectedly finds a kindred spirit in his eccentric fifth-grade science teacher, Mrs. Tibbets. Together they explore the varied habitats on her rural property, and she introduces him to the elusive and endangered Eastern spadefoot toads that make their home there.
When Ben discovers that Mrs. Tibbets’s relatives plan to sell the land to developers, he knows he must try to stop them. As Ben’s obsession with saving the spadefoot toads’ habitat grows, his schoolwork suffers and his relationships with his family and new friends are strained. But just when it seems things can’t get any worse, Ben finds a way to meet his responsibilities to the people around him and learns what it means to feel “at home.”
Want to learn more about Spadefoot Toads? Click here to see some of the resources we’ve put together for toad lovers!
2009 National Green Earth Book Award, 2010-2011 Volunteer State Book Awards nominee, 2009 KIND Children’s Honorable Mention, Society of School Librarians International Book Awards (honor book, Language Arts K-6 novels) 2009, 2010-2011 Prairie Pasque Award
Reviews & Quotes
“Harley’s appealing story shows readers that adults and children can connect in meaningful friendships, and reminds them that conservation can begin in their own backyards.” Kirkus
“Night of the Spadefoot Toads is a remarkably enjoyable read for both youngsters and grown ups” Read the entire review from Outwiththekids.com
“Children ages 9 to 12 are sure to benefit from this excellent, well-written book.” The Crimson Review of Children’s & YA Literature
Links to Fun Stuff
Calendar of Appearances
Concerts & Festivals
One School, One Book
Keynotes & Conferences
Between Home & School
Writing & Storytelling Resources
Beyond the Book: Night of the Spadefoot Toads
Visit the For the Press page for bios, photos, publicity materials, and technical information for school and family shows, as well as adult shows.
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