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Amy Makes a Friend (Portraits of Little Women)

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Amy March wants to be a great artist. She's got the talent; now all she needs is a way to afford art lessons. Her solution: befriend her rich and snobby classmate, Jenny Snow, who'll then invite Amy to sit in on her private art instructions. But Jenny can't be bothered with Amy's friendly overtures -- until Diana Hughes, a new and extremely wealthy girl, chooses Amy as her friend. Now, Amy thinks Jenny will like her too. But the price of art lessons may be higher than Amy ever imagined....

Amy's Story (Portraits of Little Women)

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Beautiful Amy March, the youngest March sister, is a talented artist. Everyone praises her lifelike portraits. The one person she can't draw is herself. So when a photographer's studio opens in town, Amy is thrilled. Now her pretty blond curls and piercing blue eyes can be captured forever in a photograph. A photograph costs quite a bit of money -- more than she has, and more than her parents can give her. Amy thinks of a clever way to come up with the money... and soon she has enough. But she decides to spend her savings on a gift for her father -- a gift that will warm his heart when he's far away from home, and that ultimately gives Amy an unexpected gift in return.

The Beauty Queen

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Playing the role of a happy pageant winner is not exactly the acting career Kit had in mind Kit Carson keeps trying to tell people that she didn't do anything. All she did was put on a bathing suit in front of the judges, and suddenly she's a beauty contest winner. It's true that the money will come in handy--new dresses and college educations don't grow on trees when your mom is a nurse and your dad doesn't always remember to help out--but all Kit really wants is to try out her dream of being an actress. Not a famous one, just successful enough to have a career in a modest theater and make a living doing what she loves. But now that Kit's a beauty queen, people seem to expect a lot from her. Above all, they seem to think she should gratefully accept the limited roles she's being offered, which are mostly those of beautiful, not-too-independent, all-American girls. Between pageant ambitions and romantic interests, Kit gets the sense that there could be plenty of opportunities in her future--as long as she's willing to play the part.

Beth Makes a Friend (Portraits of Little Women)

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Beth March would do just about anything to help someone in need. She's kind-hearted, loyal, and caring. So when she catches Sean O'Neill stealing apples from Aunt March's garden, Beth listens to the hungry boy's sad story. She's moved to hear that Sean's widowed mother and younger siblings are immigrants from poverty-stricken Ireland. But times are hard in Massachusetts too. Sean's mother has been ill and out of work, and with sisters and brothers to care for, Sean has had to scrape up food for them any way he can. Promising to help, Beth gives him whatever food and old clothes her family can spare. It's not enough. Beth's big plan: stealing from wealthy Aunt March. But Sean's own thieving forces Beth to question what being a true friend really means -- and together they discover generosity in someone who seems the most cold-hearted.

Beth's Story (Portraits of Little Women)

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Painfully shy Beth March is excited to be visiting New York City with her parents. The theater, opera, symphony, museums -- Beth loves every minute of her adventure. She even meets Abraham Lincoln, and has the courage to tell him that women deserve the right to vote. But once she's back home in Massachusetts, none of Beth's schoolmates believe that she really spoke to Mr. Lincoln or that she even met him. They know Beth is shy -- too shy to speak to a man running for President of the United States. Even Beth's younger sister, Amy, thinks she's lying. Now Beth wishes she'd never been to New York... until she's surprised by an unexpected visitor.

Better Than All Right

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

The darker the truth, the deeper you hide it--but what happens when you can't hide anymore?Innocence, I guess, is not my image. Sixteen-year-old Iris knows that between her bohemian playwright father who lives off the grid in the New Mexican desert and her mother, to whom getting married (but not staying married) is a full-time job, she's led an unorthodox life, which hasn't left with her with a lot of childhood illusions. So it's no surprise when her mom sends her to spend the summer with her aunt, uncle, and cousin. Iris's younger cousin Caryn is different. She's only fourteen, and much more sheltered. Aunt Elaine hopes that Iris will be good company for Caryn, and when the girls meet an appealing young man at the pool and all three become friends, it seems her plan just might be working. But for Iris, making things work means keeping secrets from Caryn. If Iris can't pretend to be someone she isn't all summer long, will she still be all right?

Birthday Wishes: Four Stories (Portraits of Little Women)

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Each of the March sisters tries to spend her tenth birthday in her own special way, and learns that growing up sometimes means putting others first.

Blood Wounds

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Blood can both wound and heal . . .Willa is lucky: She has a loving blended family that gets along. Not all families are so fortunate. But when a bloody crime takes place hundreds of miles away, it has an explosive effect on Willa's peaceful life. The estranged father she hardly remembers has murdered his new wife and children, and is headed east toward Willa and her mother. Under police protection, Willa discovers that her mother has harbored secrets that are threatening to boil over. Has everything Willa believed about herself been a lie? But as Willa sets out to untangle the mysteries of her past, she also keeps her own secret--one that has the potential to tear apart all she holds dear.

Christmas Dreams: Four Stories (Portraits of Little Women)

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Each of the girls has a choice to make about the beautiful brooch. Meg's Christmas Dream: Meg would gladly exchange it for a gift for her father.... Jo's Christmas Dream: Jo behaves like a total scrooge and must learn the true spirit of Christmas. Beth's Christmas Dream: Beth discovers what her sisters' and parents' lives would have been like without her. Amy's Christmas Dream: Always happy to receive presents, Amy surprises everyone when she bestows a gift to a poor little girl. This quartet of Christmas stories captures the joyful spirit of the holiday season.

Claire at Sixteen

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

When Claire fears her family might be falling apart, she knows she'll have to fight her own battles--and she plans to win Always the beauty of the family and often the most ambitious, Claire Sebastian doesn't feel sixteen, and she doesn't dream of romance--she dreams of diamonds. Diamonds and emeralds and anything else that will pay for the best doctors to treat her sister Sybil, now an invalid after a terrible accident. Claire knows that her cheekbones and charm are her best assets, but she'll also need a shrewd strategy if she's going to save her family from their financial troubles. And she's on her own: Her parents, Nicky and Megs, are completely wrapped up in Sybil's recovery, and Claire's sisters just aren't as ruthless as she is. A visit with Aunt Grace and a chance look at an old photograph give Claire the ammunition she needs to pull off her plan. But as it starts to unfold, she realizes that people are going to get hurt . . . and one of them may be her.

Courage, Dana

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

After saving a young boy's life, a girl finds that fame can be a real headache On the last warm day of autumn, Dana and her best friend eat ice cream, gossip, and complain about school. It's just like any other afternoon until Dana walks home and sees a toddler break away from his mother and sprint into the street. Without thinking, she chases after him, pushing him onto the sidewalk just before a giant blue car would have run them both down. She didn't mean to do it, but Dana has become a heroine--and her life will never be the same. Saving the boy makes her the darling of the entire town. She gets a story written about her in the paper, praise from strangers--even a beautiful Persian kitten as a gift from the boy's mother. At first she loves the attention, but she soon learns that being a celebrity brings hardship, too--and a challenge that will require her to show courage in a whole new way.

The Dead and The Gone

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Susan Beth Pfeffer's Life as We Knew It enthralled and devastated readers with its brutal but hopeful look at an apocalyptic event--an asteroid hitting the moon, setting off a tailspin of horrific climate changes. Now this harrowing companion novel examines the same events as they unfold in New York City, revealed through the eyes of seventeen-year-old Puerto Rican Alex Morales. When Alex's parents disappear in the aftermath of tidal waves, he must care for his two younger sisters, even as Manhattan becomes a deadly wasteland, and food and aid dwindle. With haunting themes of family, faith, personal change, and courage, this powerful novel explores how a young man takes on unimaginable responsibilities.

Dear Dad, Love Laurie

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

After her father moves away, Laurie sends her love by mail The scariest thing Laurie has ever seen is a half-empty house, which she discovered the day her dad moved away. The divorce was a long time coming, but that didn't make it hurt any less. To stay in touch with her father, Laurie's mom forces her to write him a letter each week, keeping him updated on everything from quizzes and tests to parties and boys. At first, the letters are a chore, a painful reminder that Dad isn't around anymore, but with every stamp she licks, Laurie finds herself growing up just a little bit more. This remarkable novel, told entirely through Laurie's letters to her father, is a powerful story of divorce and renewal that proves it's not impossible to love someone from afar.

Devil's Den

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Tending to a veteran's grave leads a boy on a search for his father The battlefield at Gettysburg is a landscape of rolling hills, thickly wooded forests, and monuments to men who died here long ago. When Joey looks at this peaceful landscape, he sees it through the eyes of Joshua Gibbs, a soldier from his hometown who came to Gettysburg to save the Union. Joey comes here with his stepfather hoping to learn more about the soldier whose story has captured his imagination, but he will leave obsessed with another person's history: his own. Joey doesn't know much about his biological father, who left his mother long ago, and he has never been all that curious. But during the trip to Gettysburg, his stepfather announces that he wants to adopt him. This surprising declaration sends Joey on a frantic search for his birth father--a search that uncovers truths even harder to understand than those of Gettysburg, and just as painful as any battle ever fought.

Evvie at Sixteen

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

There's nothing wrong with lying--until the truth comes out For her sixteenth birthday, Evvie Sebastian got her own room--a room she doesn't have to share with her three sisters. There's only one problem: It's a dump, just like the rest of the family's new house. Evvie has hardly moved in when her dad, Nicky, asks her to spend the summer at the seaside with her great-aunt Grace, who's had a bad fall and needs cheering up--and who is snobbish, ill tempered, and very, very rich. Evvie reluctantly agrees. When she arrives at Eastgate, she finds Aunt Grace just as fierce as she remembered, but she has to admit that the place has some redeeming qualities. Like the handsome and charming Schyler Hughes . . . and Sam Steinmetz, who works in the town bookstore and makes smart jokes about the local culture of conformity. But it's not all romantic sailing trips and walks on the beach. Evvie soon finds that some people like to tell old stories and share old secrets a little too much--and some of those secrets may hit closer to home than Evvie expected.

Family of Strangers

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Sometimes Abby thinks the most important event in her life happened before she was even born Abby's not dying; in fact she's perfectly healthy. If she were dead, maybe her father would grieve for her the way he's still grieving for Johnny, who would have been Abby's older brother if he hadn't died when he was only two. Probably not though. The only time her dad even notices her is when he's pushing her into an Ivy League college. And now that Abby's oldest sister, Jocelyn, has left for med school, and Jess, the middle sister, has run away to pursue a major in drug and alcohol addiction, her mom is rarely home. Living among strangers, Abby writes letters and makes up imaginary dialogues with a boy that she's too shy to approach. And she draws up her will over and over, trying to decide who should inherit her teddy bears and who should get all the guilt and recrimination that have accumulated in her family. Left alone--as always--Abby figures her choices are to be physically dead, emotionally dead, or really alive. But living means shaking things up, taking chances, and saying all those things her family would rather keep covered up. It might not end well, but what does she have to lose?

Fantasy Summer

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Robin doesn't want to be perfect, but it would be nice to be more than perfectly average Robin can't believe it: Out of the thousands of girls who applied for the Image magazine summer internships, she's one of only four winners who will be spending the summer in New York City. Robin knows she'll be working hard at the popular teen magazine, but she hopes there will be plenty of time for shopping, eating out, and living the fabulous life. Her excitement is only a little dulled when she hears her cousin Annie got one of the other spots. Robin and Annie used to be close, but now that their mothers compare them to each other all the time, both girls feel like they can't win. So when they meet at their hotel, the cousins agree: All they want is to be themselves and have a perfect summer. Along with their roommates, Ashley and Torey, Robin and Annie dive into their new responsibilities--and into the parties, makeovers, and social lives they've always dreamed of. But while their friendships are getting stronger, life in the public eye is harder than it looks, and all four girls know that only one intern can be chosen for the cover of the special Image issue. Will Robin's dream of the perfect summer survive reality?

The Friendship Pact

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Tracy's favorite TV star is coming to town, and she will do anything to meet him face to face The two people Tracy loves most are Rabbit O'Shea, a smooth-talking bad boy, and Ross Perlman, an innocent young man with a golden voice. She could never choose between them, and she'll never have to, because Rabbit is a TV character, and Ross is the actor who plays him. When Ross announces a concert in Tracy's hometown, she pledges to do whatever it takes to meet the real-life Rabbit--a decision that could cost her everything she holds dear. She and her best friend, Andrea, make a pact that they will meet Ross together or not at all. But when one of them gets the chance to meet him alone, it threatens to tear their friendship apart. Suddenly, Tracy finds herself longing for the days when Ross Perlman was just another poster on her wall.

Getting Even

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

People think Annie can handle anything, and she can--but only because the alternative is worse Annie's summer in New York City was every teenager's dream. Being chosen as a summer intern at Image magazine meant the chance to work on real articles during the day and enjoy the independence and excitement of city life outside office hours. But now, going back to her high school routine feels like punishment--especially when the promised editorial job at the school paper doesn't work out the way she planned. Annie knows she's ready for bigger challenges, but it feels like every time she keeps her calm and saves the day, she gets punished for her own success. Suddenly she's tired of being the boring old dependable honor student that everyone thinks is getting along just fine. Annie tells her mom she has a right to get angry sometimes, and at first it does feel good to tell people what she really thinks. But can Annie keep her job, her boyfriend, and her family close when getting mad turns into getting even?

Ghostly Tales: Four Stories (Portraits of Little Women)

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Losing your way in the woods.... Prowling a castle in the dead of night.... Finding a treasure in a dusty attic.... Finding a frightening force in your own home.... The March sisters -- Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy -- never imagined they'd encounter beings from the spirit world. But in each of these four new eerie stories, one of the March girls finds herself face-to-face with an inexplicable apparition. Could it be that ghosts really do exist?

A Gift for Amy (Portraits of Little Women)

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

When Amy encourages the attentions of Robert Lloyd, he surprises her with an expensive gift. Now Amy must face her true feelings-- and her heart's real dreams of the future.

A Gift for Jo (Portraits of Little Women)

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Budding writer Jo March can't put down the beautifully bound journal that her kind neighbor gives her. She pours out her heart in its pages, certain that no one will read her secret thoughts and feelings. But the journal falls into the wrong hands. Jo's sisters are angered by what they read, and Jo is angered by their invasion of her privacy. Suddenly the best gift of all threatens to split the March sisters apart.

A Gift for Meg (Portraits of Little Women)

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Meg March treasures the bolt of Belgian lace that Aunt March brings her from a trip to Europe. The exquisite lace is to be used on her wedding day, far in the future. For now, Meg wants only to admire it and, above all, to safeguard it from jealous Jo. But the more Meg attempts to keep the lace out of Jo's hands, the more Jo covets it. What can come of a gift that turns two loving sisters into bitter enemies?

Hard Times High

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

A cast member of TV's number-one show is about to be fired--how will Alison, Bill, TJ, Rafe, Molly, Miranda, and Susie handle the possibility of being unemployed? A bombshell has just been dropped on the cast of TV's Hard Time High: A major new storyline is being introduced. But it means someone is going to get canned from the show. Former childhood star TJ has lived through this before, when his previous hit TV show was canceled. Used to the steady paycheck after a life on the road, Molly makes a list of her options. Left with a mountain of debt if he gets axed, Rafe's only hope is the movie he just filmed. If ex-teen beauty queen Alison loses her job, how will she go on supporting her family? After years of commercials and made-for-TV movies, Bill doesn't want to lose his chance at a real career. Miranda can't imagine being let go when she's still learning the acting ropes. And Susie worries that she was only cast in the first place because she's the producer's daughter. But one of the seven is going to be kicked off the show. The bigger surprise is what will happen next.

Jo Makes a Friend (Portraits of Little Women)

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Exuberant Jo March never sits still. Whether she's racing against boys or scribbling and acting in her latest play, Jo is always active and creative. So when Aunt March asks her to befriend Pauline Wheeler, Jo can't believe that the girl spends every day cooped up in her bedroom. True, Pauline is blind and utterly dependent on her governess, but her fear of life exhausts Jo's patience. The two girls simply have nothing in common -- until they're caught in a snow squall that changes their lives.

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