CurriConnects Book List - Music and Musicians


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Music and Musicians
Dance to the beat with books about musicians, composers, and the way they make music. This list includes fiction and nonfiction books, as well as books about instruments and how they are made. Take note of music and the people who make it -- from long ago until today. This list includes books for ALL levels. Share it during Music in Your Schools Month (March) or even during a unit on sound in your science classes. Bring the Arts into STEM to make STEAM!

Preschool and Picture Books

Music Everywhere - Maya Ajmera, (978-1570919374), Non-fiction
Interest level: K-3, Lexile: 400
Enjoy this picture book of musical instruments and music around the world, complete with wonderful photos and maps.

Acoustic Rooster and His Barnyard Band - Kwame Alexander, (978-1585366880), Fiction
Interest level: 1-5
A barnyard rooster forms a jazz band whose members names are allusions to the jazz greats like Ella Fitzgerald and Billy Holiday; a glossary explains the names, characters, music, and history.

Giraffes Can't Dance - Giles Andreae, (978-0439287197), Fiction
Interest level: K-3, Lexile: 570
Each year, the animals in the jungle hold the Great Jungle Dance. Gerald never looks forward to it because his body cannot move to the music. One night, Gerald finds music his body can move to, and he is transformed.

Trombone Shorty - Troy Andrews, (978-1419714658), Non-fiction
Interest level: K-3, Lexile: 760
This is an autobiography of Troy "Trombone Shorty" Andrews and his path to fulfilling his dream of playing music.

88 Instruments - Chris Barton, (978-0553538144), Fiction
Interest level: K-3, Lexile: 410
A young boy visits a music store with his family to choose an instrument. He is overwhelmed by all the options and considers them using onomatopoeia and superlatives. He finally makes his choice and is determined to do his best to learn the instrument.

Marsh Music - Marianne Berkes, (978-0761374619), Fiction
Interest level: K-3
Learn about how to hear a natural orchestra while walking outside; readers learn many musical terms as well.

Musical Instruments - Christophe Boncens, (978-2733827154), Non-fiction
Interest level: K-3, Lexile: 730
Preschoolers will love pressing the buttons to hear the sounds of trumpets, violins, guitars, drums, and pianos in this book of photographs and explanations (My Little Sound Books series).

A, B, Sea - Dianna Bonder, (978-1770500433), Fiction
Interest level: K-2
This alphabet book offers views of deep sea animals playing a myriad of instruments.

The Steel Pan Man of Harlem - Colin Bootman, (978-0822590262), Fiction
Interest level: K-2
This book, a variation on the legend of the Pied Piper of Hamlin, portrays a steel pan player who claims to be able to lead the rats out of Harlem.

Ah, Music! - Aliki Brandenberg, (978-0064462365), Non-fiction
Interest level: K-5, Lexile: 910
This book is a great introduction to many elements of music.

Berlioz the Bear - Jan Brett, (978-0698113992), Fiction
Interest level: K-3, Lexile: 610
Berlioz the Bear and his bear orchestra are on their way to play at a ball. He hears buzzing from the bass and is so concerned about the sound that he doesn't see the bump in the road. His cart gets stuck, and he and the musicians must get to the ball on time.

Wild Symphony - Dan Brown, (978-0593123843), Fiction
Interest level: K-2
This book takes Maestro Mouse on a tour of the jungle, looking for animals to play in his symphony. Children can enjoy reading this book and take advantage of the free interactive smartphone app, which plays an appropriate song for each page using augmented reality! See the book to learn more about this neat feature.

Hey Diddle Diddle - Eve Bunting, (978-1590787687), Fiction
Interest level: K-2
The animals team up to create an orchestra.

Sounds Around Town - Maria Carluccio, (978-1846864308), Fiction
Interest level: K-1
Read about what sounds a young child might hear walking around town while listening to the birds and finally nodding off to sleep.

Haydn's Farewell Symphony - Anna Harwell Celenza, (978-1570914065), Fiction
Interest level: 1-4, Lexile: 740
Haydn's famous Farewell Symphony reflects a summer at Prince Nicholas' palace at Esterhazy.

Beethoven's Heroic Symphony - Anna Harwell Celenza, (978-1570915093), Fiction
Interest level: 1-4
Read and discover Beethoven's Heroic Symphony and its roots in Napoleon's accomplishments.

Bach's Goldberg Variations - Anna Harwell Celenza, (978-1570915109), Fiction
Interest level: 1-4
Johann Sebastian Bach's composition of the Goldberg Variations came from a count's challenge to a servant to combine all his harpsichord music into a unified piece that contained a riddle; Bach obliges and the famous variations were born.

Duke Ellington's Nutcracker Suite - Anna Harwell Celenza, (978-1570917004), Fiction
Interest level: 1-4, Lexile: 620
This book recreates the time when Duke Ellington and his comrades reset Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Suite as jazz.

Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue - Anna Harwell Celenza, (978-1570915567), Fiction
Interest level: 2-4, Lexile: 830
Under pressure to create an original concerto for an upcoming concert, George Gershwin decides to model his music on the American people and their great variety.

Vivaldi's Four Seasons - Anna Harwell Celenza, (978-1570916373), Fiction
Interest level: 1-4, Lexile: 760
This book tells the story of Vivaldi's creation of his Four Seasons concerto set against the backdrop of the orphanage Ospedale della Pieta.

Vivaldi and the Invisible Orchestra - Stephen Costanza, (978-0805078015), Fiction
Interest level: 1-2
Antonio Vivaldi really did use orphans to make up the orchestra that played his music; this book imagines how one other orphan, who transcribed his music, got a little acclaim and recognition for herself and the other silent orchestral members.

Little Pig Joins the Band - David Hyde Costello, (978-1580892643), Fiction
Interest level: K-3, Lexile: 490
Little Pig is disgruntled to find there are no band instruments left for him to play in the band which includes all of his other family members, but he does notice they need a leader!

My Family Plays Music - Judy Cox, (978-0823415915), Fiction
Interest level: K-3, Lexile: 580
The family that plays together, stays together. A young girl enhances her musical family by playing various percussion instruments along with her family members and their various instruments.

A is for Alliguitar: Musical Alphabeasts - Nancy Raines Day, (978-1455615575), Fiction
Interest level: K-3
This alphabet book creates its own names for instruments based on the letter of the alphabet it is teaching.

Xavier Ox's Xylophone Experiment - Barbara deRubertis, (978-1575653495), Fiction
Interest level: K-3, Lexile: 510
Xavier finds new friends at a new school who help him build a super xylophone when his drum set fails.

This Jazz Man - Karen Ehrhardt, (978-0152053079), Fiction
Interest level: K-3
Following the rhythms of "This Old Man," this book introduces readers to different jazz musicians and incorporates their rhythms and sounds into the words used on the different pages of the book.

Olivia Forms a Band - Ian Falconer, (978-1416924548), Fiction
Interest level: K-3
Olivia has to start her own band; she must be creative about the types of instruments it has since she has no time to get traditional ones before the fireworks display that night.

I Know a Shy Fellow Who Swallowed a Cello - Barbara Garriel, (978-1590789469), Fiction
Interest level: 1-3
A man just listening to music has an uncontrollable urge to gulp down one of the instruments in this book written in the style of "I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly."

Music Star - Paul Hannigan, (978-1449401733), Fiction
Interest level: K-3
Jack tries out a variety of musical instruments which he accesses with his imagination, substituting a broom for a guitar for example.

Meet the Orchestra - Ann Hayes, (978-0152002220), Fiction
Interest level: K-3, Lexile: 720
Readers learn the names and ranges of various orchestral instruments as they greet each musician in turn.

Mendel's Accordion - Heidi Smith Hyde, (978-1580132145), Non-fiction
Interest level: 1-4
Mendel, a master accordion player in Eastern Europe, loses his fame when he moves to the U.S., but the instrument is revived after his great-grandson discovers the treasure.

Violet's Music - Angela Johnson, (978-0803727403), Fiction
Interest level: K-3
Violet loves music and has been searching since infancy to find others who share her passion.

M is for Music - Kathleen Krull, (978-0152064792), Non-fiction
Interest level: K-3, Lexile: 380
This alphabet book goes through terms, musicians, instruments, and musical elements to create a fast-paced read.

Can You Hear It? - William Lach, (978-0810957213), Non-fiction
Interest level: K-5
Youngsters read about and listen to great works of music matched with great paintings; as they listen for certain elements, they come to appreciate the entire piece (offered by the Metropolitan Museum of Art).

Jake the Philharmonic Dog - Karen LeFrak, (978-0802795526), Fiction
Interest level: K-2
Jake the dog loves music even more than barking, so when he attends a symphony rehearsal, he joins right in with his "ruffs" and "woofs."

Natsumi - Seth Lendroth, (978-0399170904), Fiction
Interest level: K-3, Lexile: 650
Natsumi and her family are preparing for the annual festival in Japan. She does everything with too much energy - dancing, flower arranging, and stirring the tea. She channels her energy and exuberance into drumming.

Never Play Music Right Next to the Zoo - John Lithgow, (978-1442467439), Fiction
Interest level: K-3
A young listener falls asleep during a concert. When he awakes, the animals from the zoo next door have taken over the stage and are playing all of the instruments.

The Remarkable Farkle McBride - John Lithgow, (978-0689835414), Fiction
Interest level: K-2
A very young boy has to try all the instruments of the orchestra to find which is the very best for him.

Pecorino's First Concert - Alan Madison, (978-1442421912), Fiction
Interest level: K-3
Although Pecorino is supposed to be the silliest boy in the world, he gets into even more trouble than imaginable when he attends an orchestra concert.

Squeak, Rumble, Whomp! Whomp! Whomp! - Wynton Marsalis, (978-0763639914), Fiction
Interest level: K-3
Readers learn to listen for neighborhood sounds and respond to them with clapping and stomping!

James the Dancing Dog - Linda Maybarduk, (978-0887766190), Fiction
Interest level: K-2
Based on the story of a real dog involved with orchestra, this book imagines how James the dog must have been feeling as he observed the ballet dancers with delight only to see another dog get the "dancing" role.

Farmer Joe and the Music Show - Tony Mitton, (978-0545124935), Fiction
Interest level: PreK
Farmer Joe gets all the animals on his farm to tune up their instruments and/or use their voices to make music for a show.

Zin! Zin! Zin!! A Violin - Lloyd Moss, (978-0689835247), Fiction
Interest level: PreK-3, Lexile: 730
Beginning with a lone trombone, more instruments are added to the stage. This book introduces readers to all of the instrument groups they hear in the orchestra.

Music Is - Lloyd Moss, (978-0399233364), Non-fiction
Interest level: PreK-1
This book shows how music can be experienced and appreciated.

Duke Ellington: The Piano Prince and His Orchestra - Andrea Pinkney, (978-0786814206), Non-fiction
Interest level: PreK-5, Lexile: 800
This is a biography of Jazz great Duke Ellington.

The Carnival of the Animals - Jack Prelutsky, (978-0375864582), Fiction
Interest level: K-3
Poet Jack Prelutsky expands the music of Saint Saens' Carnival of the Animals, showing readers exactly what each animal does when it hears music; the accompanying cd introduces the very young to the delights of the different musical instruments.

Charlie Parker Played Be Bop - Christopher Raschka, (978-0553112030), Non-fiction
Interest level: PreK-2, Lexile: 250
Charlie Parker originated bebop music while entertaining the world with his saxophone.

Do Re Mi: If You Can Read Music, Thank Guido D'Arezzo - Susan Roth, (978-0618465729), Fiction
Interest level: PreK-2, Lexile: 710
Guido d'Arezzo invented the system of lines and spaces that musicians around the world use to write music; this fictionalized biography tells of his determination to share his original system.

Little Melba and Her Big Trombone - Katheryn Russell-Brown, (978-1600608988), Non-fiction
Interest level: 2-3, Lexile: 780
Melba Doretta Liston loves music. She teaches herself to play the trombone at 7 years old, is on
the radio at 8, and is a professional at 17. She became a renowned trombonist and arranger and partnered with many Jazz greats, including Duke Ellington and Billie Holliday.

I Got the Rhythm - Connie Schofield-Morrison, (978-1619631786), Fiction
Interest level: PreK-1, Lexile: 170
On a trip to the park, a young girl finds music in the world around her.

Ballet of the Elephants - Leda Schubert, (978-1596430754), Fiction
Interest level: PreK-2, Lexile: 780
This fictionalized account shows how a famous composition was set to music for a group of ballerinas (and elephants).

Peter and the Wolf - Janet Schulman, (978-0375824302), Fiction
Interest level: PreK-2, Lexile: 780
Peter leaves his safe home to explore the world and runs across a dangerous wolf, hunters, and a big challenge; the accompanying cd offers different instruments representing the different characters of the story for a great introduction to musical instruments.

I, Vivaldi - Janice Shefelman, (978-0802853189), Fiction
Interest level: 2-5, Lexile: 570
The writer imagines how Vivaldi himself would describe his choice of music over the priesthood to very young readers in this picture book.

Hold Onto Your Music - Emil Sher, (978-0316463133), Non-fiction
Interest level: PreK-3
Lisa Jura was a musical prodigy in Vienna prior to World War II. Her parents sent her to an orphanage in London on the Kindertransport. Music was her solace and a sliver of hope for her during the war.

What Every Child Needs to Know about Punk Rock - R. Bradley Snyder, (978-1940705057), Non-fiction
Interest level: K-2
This book helps explain the phenomenon of the punk rock movement to children.

Octopus's Garden - Ringo Starr, (978-1481403627), Fiction
Interest level: PreK-3, Lexile: 500
Enjoy dancing and singing with the Octopus of Beatle fame.

The Man with the Violin - Kathy Stinson, (978-1554515653), Fiction
Interest level: K-3, Lexile: 620
A young boy has a difficult time getting his mother to stop and listen to the subway musician.

Sweet Music in Harlem - Debbie Taylor, (978-1620140802), Non-fiction
Interest level: K-3, Lexile: 630
A young nephew races around Harlem looking for his uncle's lost hat but instead comes up with lots of other lost articles and a score of famous Harlem jazz musicians.

Nighttime Symphony - Timbaland, (978-1442412088), Fiction
Interest level: PreK-3, Lexile: 740
The sounds of a city thunderstorm lull a baby to sleep.

Green Golly and Her Golden Flute - Keith Torgan, (978-1936172627), Fiction
Interest level: K-1
Green Golly passes her time in imprisonment practicing music on a golden flute and dreaming of getting out of the witch's tower.

Tubby the Tuba - Paul Tripp, (978-0525477174), Fiction
Interest level: PreK-3
Tubby the Tuba is an important member of his musical group, but he really wants to play the melody sometime.

Little Stevie Wonder - Quincy Troupe, (978-0618340606), Non-fiction
Interest level: PreK-3
This book is a poetic tribute to Stevie Wonder, musician and composer.

Teach Your Buffalo to Play Drums - Audrey Vernick, (617-62539), Fiction
Interest level: PreK-2
Although the buffalo really wants to make music, should he be helped to play drums since he has often started other activities with a bang but then his interest has faded?

Farty Marty - B. J. Ward, (978-1442439016), Fiction
Interest level: PreK-2, Lexile: 630
After cat Marty's annoying flatulence is discovered to be actually musical, the offending smells and sounds are viewed differently.

Before John Was a Jazz Giant - Carole Boston Weatherford, (978-0805079944), Non-fiction
Interest level: K-4, Lexile: 1090
This book illustrates how John Coltrane's growing up in the south and being influenced by church music, preachers preaching, and the radio playing all paved the way for his great musical career.

Encore, Opera Cat! - Tess Weaver, (978-0547146478), Fiction
Interest level: PreK-3
Madame, the opera singer, has a cat who fancies that she herself is just as talented as her mistress in singing and acting the opera parts; what happens when the cat tries her hand at the music?

When Louis Armstrong Taught Me Scat - Muriel Harris Weinstein, (978-0811851312), Fiction
Interest level: PreK-4
A girl learns scat from jazz master Louis Armstrong, and readers will delight in the wonderful onomatopoetic words that propel the narrative.

The Fabulous Feud of Gilbert and Sullivan - Jonah Winter, (978-0439930505), Fiction
Interest level: PreK-4, Lexile: 640
Half of the Gilbert and Sullivan opera team, Mr. Sullivan, refuses to continue writing silly operas with themes that repeat all the other ridiculous ones he has already written.

The Orchestra Pit - Johanna Wright, (978-1596437692), Fiction
Interest level: PreK-1
When a snake happens into the orchestra pit, it enjoys naming and describing all the instruments, but the members of the orchestra do not enjoy seeing the serpentine creature so much!

Middle Grade Books

Yellow Submarine - The Beatles , (978-0763624408), Fiction
Interest level: 3-5
The Beatles take the yellow submarine to assist the residents of Pepperland who are being besieged by the Blue Meanies.

Molly Moon and the Monster Music - Georgia Byng, (978-0061661631), Fiction
Interest level: 4-6, Lexile: 670
Molly Moon comes across a magical coin that seduces listeners with its music and makes them slaves.

The Battling Bands - Frank Cammuso, (978-0439903189), Fiction
Interest level: 3-7, Lexile: 260
Artie tries to find a magical sword that can help his band win a music contest in this graphic novel (Knights of the Lunch Table Series).

Riding on Duke's Train - Mick Carlon, (978-1935248064), Fiction
Interest level: 2-6
After Danny gets onto Duke Ellington's train, he finds a new home in Harlem with many celebrated musicians.

Jazz Kid - James Lincoln Collier, (97-80805028218), Fiction
Interest level: 4-9
Paulie's sole desire is to play jazz on his cornet, but it gets him into trouble with his parents when he gets involved in the Chicago underworld.

The Black Canary - Jane Louise Curry, (978-0689864780), Fiction
Interest level: 4-9, Lexile: 960
After James time travels to the 17th century UK, he discovers why his parents are musicians and uses his beautiful singing voice and biraciality to get into music himself.

The Phantom of the Opera - Joeming Dunn, (978-1602706798), Fiction
Interest level: 3-5, Lexile: 870
A mishapen creature who lives in the bowels of the Parisian opera house disguises himself and approaches a beautiful opera diva with music and love.

The Voice That Challenged a Nation - Russell Freedman, (978-0547480343), Non-fiction
Interest level: 6-7, Lexile: 1180
This biography of Marian Anderson, a revolutionary African American singer who championed civil rights in the US, reflects information found in her letters and writings as well as other contemporary publications.

Play It Again Mallory - Laurie Friedman, (978-0761360759), Fiction
Interest level: 2-5, Lexile: 730
Mallory is not terribly happy to get stuck playing the tuba as her choice of electives ends her up in band, but she learns that persistence pays off (Mallory McDonald books).

Simply Fantastic: An Introduction to Classical Music - Ana Gerhard, (978-2924217214), Non-fiction
Interest level: 2-4
This book and its accompanying CD are great introductions to classical music and its sounds for the youngest listeners and readers.

Stompin' at the Savoy - Alan Govenar, (978-0763622442), Non-fiction
Interest level: 4-7, Lexile: 820
Alan Govenar's interviews with Norma Miller, a celebrated jazz dance use, show the spirit that led her to fame.

Marvin Makes Music - Marvin Hamlisch, (978-0803737303), Non-fiction
Interest level: 2-5
Marvin wows everyone with his musical ability, but he is hesitant to perform pieces by famous composers with names like Ludwig or Wolfgang until his father's advice changes his mind.

Those Amazing Musical Instruments - Genevieve Helsby, (978-1402208256), Non-fiction
Interest level: 4-7, Lexile: 820
This book introduces middle level readers to the great variety of music instruments through text and an accompanying CD.

Jason and the Wonder Horn - Linda Hutsell-Manning, (978-1550502145), Fiction
Interest level: 4-6
Jason's attic find of an old bugle leads him to creating a band that time travels whenever Jason plays the horn.

The Little Piano Girl - Ann Ingalls, (978-0618959747), Non-fiction
Interest level: 1-4, Lexile: 690
This book introduces readers to Mary Lou Williams, an African American jazz pianist.

Drumbeat in Our Feet - Patricia Keeler, (978-1620140796), Non-fiction
Interest level: 1-5, Lexile: 950
This book goes into the history and characteristics of African dance as seen in traditional African settings and also in modern-day Harlem.

Born to Rock - Gordon Korman, (978-0786809219), Fiction
Interest level: 5-9, Lexile: 780
Conservative teen Leo Caraway is astonished when he finds out his birth father was a punk rock star.

Lives of the Musicians - Kathleen Krull, (978-0152164362), Non-fiction
Interest level: 5-8, Lexile: 1010
This book approaches discussing musician biographies by telling very interesting anecdotes about the positive and negative personal experiences and happenings of their times.

Making Music - John Langstaff, (978-1580175128), Non-fiction
Interest level: 3-5
Readers can learn how to make instruments from household objects and how to play them as well!

Story of the Orchestra - Robert Levine, (978-1579121488), Non-fiction
Interest level: 4-8, Lexile: 1220
Use the book and the accompanying cd to introduce children to orchestral instruments, types of musical pieces, and orchestras.

Morgy's Magical Summer - Maggie Lewis, (978-0618777075), Fiction
Interest level: 2-5
Morgy's delight at being at music camp where he can play his trumpet to his heart's content is diminished by meeting Damian, a tease and a bully.

Baxter Barret Brown's Bass Fiddle - Tim McKenzie, (978-1931721066), Fiction
Interest level: 2-4
After Baxter adds wheels and other devices to his bass to make it more convenient to use, it loses its ability to play!

Sadie the Saxophone Fairy - Daisy Meadows, (978-0545106306), Fiction
Interest level: 3-5, Lexile: 750
Rachel and Kirsty must get the Magic Fairies' instruments back from Jack Frost whose thievery has caused music to fall out of tune (Rainbow Magic series).

Magnifico - Victoria Miles, (978-1550419917), Fiction
Interest level: 3-6
Mariangela's new accordion teacher does a lot more for her than teach accordion; his stories bring her to a new understanding of her own immigrant family.

Rock God - Barnabas Miller, (978-1402259623), Fiction
Interest level: 4-9, Lexile: 680
B.J. wants to make a splash with his move to New York, so he decides to become a rock star.

Blues Journey - Walter Dean Myers, (978-0823420797), Non-fiction
Interest level: 5-7
The history of the African American experience emergences in this beautiful blues poem.

Jazz - Walter Dean Myers, (978-0823421732), Non-fiction
Interest level: 3-7
This non-fiction offering celebrates the history of jazz with vivid illustrations and jazz-aping rhymes.

Matthew Meets the Man - Travis Nichols, (978-1596435452), Fiction
Interest level: 5-8, Lexile: 770
Matthew's attempts to return to drum player find many obstacles as he attempts to work to make the money to do what he wants while in high school.

Come Sing Jimmy Jo - Katherine Paterson, (978-0140373974), Fiction
Interest level: 7-9, Lexile: 760
James faces a lot of personal changes, even changing his name, after his family becomes a popular country music ensemble.

Children's Book of Music - DK Publishing, (978-0756667344), Non-fiction
Interest level: 3-6
This book explores the history of music around the world, touching on cultures, instruments, and the use of technology in modern music.

Legends, Icons and Rebels - Robbie Robertson, (978-1770495715), Non-fiction
Interest level: 4-7
Learn about musicians who changed the way people experience music.

The Way to Stay in Destiny - Augusta Scattergood, (978-0545538251), Fiction
Interest level: 4-7
Theo comes to live with Uncle Raymond in Destiny, Florida. He has left the only life he has ever known. Theo finds a piano and meets Anabel and his adventures begin.

Chillax - Jerry Scott, (978-0062228512), Fiction
Interest level: 6-9
Jeremy finally succeeds in getting to go to a rock concert only accompanied by a friend in this humorous take on young teens.

The Best Mariachi in the World - J.D. Smith, (978-0979446245), Fiction
Interest level: 4-7
Gustavo adjusts his dream of becoming a mariachi after he finds he has a slightly different talent.

The Composer is Dead - Lemony Snicket, (978-0061236273), Fiction
Interest level: 3-6, Lexile: 710
Each musical section in an orchestra must provide answers to an inspector when the conductor is found dead.

Play It Again, Mozart! - Geronimo Stilton, (978-1597072762), Fiction
Interest level: 3-5, Lexile: 430
Geronimo Stilton has his friends prevent the theft of a famous Mozart piece.

The Chance to Fly - Ali Stroker, (978-1419743931), Fiction
Interest level: 3-7
Nat Beacon is not excited to move from California to New Jersey for her mother's job. When the musical theater-loving teenager arrives at her new school, she learns that the school is staging Wicked, one of her favorite musicals.

The Magic Flute - Kyra Teis, (978-1595721143), Fiction
Interest level: K-6, Lexile: 590
This book retells the story of Mozart's Magic Flute opera.

Finding the Music - Jennifer Torres, (978-0892394067), Fiction
Interest level: 3-6
Reyna breaks her Abuelito's instrument. As she tries to find someone to repair it, she learns about her Abuelito and his history as a musician.

A Certain Music - Celeste Walters, (978-1742757407), Fiction
Interest level: 4-7
A young child with problems at home befriends an elderly deaf musician and later sees their friendship reflected in his great music.

Play, Louis, Play! - Muriel Harris Weinstein, (978-1599903750), Fiction
Interest level: 2-6
Louis Armstrong's horn tells the story of his life.

Dizzy - Jonah Winter, (978-0439507370), Non-fiction
Interest level: 3-8
Dizzy Gillespie overcame his challenging childhood to become a great, ground-breaking musician.

Young Adult Books (ages 12-18; Grades 7 and up)

Guitar Notes - Mary Amato, (978-0142403181), Fiction
Interest level: 7-12, Lexile: 670
Tripp, a guitarist, and Lyla, a cellist, become buddies when they must share the school's practice room.

My Lord, What a Morning - Marian Anderson, (978-0252070532), Non-fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 950
Marian Anderson's autobiography starts with her modest beginnings and continues through her fascinating life to her international fame (Music in American Life series).

Janis Joplin - Ann Angel, (978-0810983496), Non-fiction
Interest level: 9-12, Lexile: 1170
This biography of Janis Joplin contains it all, her originality, musical development, misery, sexuality, and drug usage which resulted in her early death.

What a Song Can Do - Jennifer Armstrong, (978-0307434104), Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 780
These short stories all describe the effect music has on young persons' lives.

Wise Young Fool - Sean Beaudoin, (978-0316203791), Fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 670
A teen guitar player has rock music to help him cope with a very troubled past.

Leonard Bernstein - Jean Blashfield, (978-0894343377), Non-fiction
Interest level: 6-9
This very accessible biography of Bernstein includes his education, mentors, challenges, and composing and conducting achievements.

Chariot in the Sky - Arna Bontemps, (978-0195156584), Fiction
Interest level: 8-12
Told from the point of view of a slave, this book describes the history of the African American Jubilee Singers as well as the attempt of some black students to fundraise and save their college through their singing.

I Am (Not) the Walrus - Ed Briant, (978-0738732466), Fiction
Interest level: 7-12, Lexile: 680
When bass player Toby finds a mysterious note in an ancient guitar, his plans to become more appealing to the girls takes second place.

Plastic Fantastic - Simon Cheshire, (978-0385732130), Fiction
Interest level: 6-12
A two-hour encounter in a non-functioning elevator reveals much about the lives of two teen musicians who are stuck there.

The True Adventures of Nicolo Zen - Nicholas Christopher, (978-0375867385), Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 1000
Nicolo's magic clarinet leads him on many adventures and to becoming a revered musician in 18th century Venice.

Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist - Rachel Cohn, (978-0375846144), Fiction
Interest level: 7-12, Lexile: 1020
Nick, immersed in rock music, asks a college bound student to pose as his girlfriend for a few minutes.

Hidden Voices: The Orphan Musicians of Venice - Pat Lowery Collins, (978-0763639174), Fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 1040
Three young female orphans participate in concerts that bring money to the orphanage and possible suitors to the girls; this book is for mature teens because of sexual content.

The Musician's Daughter - Susanne Dunlap, (978-1599903323), Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 950
A young girl begins to work for Haydn after her father's murder leaves her in charge of the family.

Dirty Little Secret - Jennifer Echols, (978-1451658033), Fiction
Interest level: 7-9
After Bailey's sister separates from their singing duo to rise to stardom elsewhere, she defies her family's wishes and follows a garage band wannabe on his attempt to become famous in this fiction for mature young adults.

Fat Kid Rules the World - K.L. Going, (978-0142402085), Fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 700
A homeless teenager pulls Troy out of his suicidal state when he invites Troy to be in his band.

Harlem Stomp - Laban Carrick Hill, (978-0316034241), Non-fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 1270
This book describes the fascinating history and marvelous accomplishments of the Harlem Renaissance artists and musicians.

Making Musical Instruments with Kids - Bart Hopkin, (978-1884365485), Non-fiction
Interest level: 8-12
With the help of an adult, children can easily make over 65 musical instruments by using this book.

The Backup Singer - Barb Huff, (978-0613796460), Fiction
Interest level: 7-9
Jenna's selection as lead singer for a school rock group may have something to do with her racial group.

Mountain Solo - Jeanette Ingold, (978-0152053581), Fiction
Interest level: 7-12, Lexile: 810
A child prodigy violinist gives up the hectic competitive life of a young musician in NY City to return to her roots in Montana and contemplates a musician's life, both in the past and present.

The Sound of Letting Go - Stasia Ward Kehoe, (978-0670015535), Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 940
Daisy escapes from the difficulties of having a brother with autism through immersing herself in jazz, although she has a difficult time when he seems to be going to live in an institution.

Lit Riffs - Jonathan Lethem , (978-0743470261), Fiction
Interest level: 7-12
This short story collection includes stories written after famous authors were inspired by popular songs.

Punk Rock Dad - Jim Lindberg, (978-0061148767), Non-fiction
Interest level: 9-12
Jim Lindberg really is a punk rock fan, but he is also a father, and in this book, he demonstrates how he fits in the work of both worlds

Guitar Girl - Sarra Manning, (978-0142403181), Fiction
Interest level: 6-12
After Molly and her friends start a rock band, they discover fame is not all roses and rainbows.

In Mozart's Shadow - Carolyn Meyer, (978-0152055943), Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 940
Although Mozart's sister is an aspiring musician, the prodigy Wolfgang and her female sex keep her from being noticed as a serious performer.

Meet the Great Composers - June Montgomery, (978-0882848556), Non-fiction
Interest level: 6-10
This book is divided into teaching units for many famous composers and provides a great classroom resource with a variety of activities for each and the accompanying cd offers students a chance to listen to some of their music.

The Young Musician's Survival Guide - Amy Nathan, (978-0195367393), Non-fiction
Interest level: 7-12
This book contains many useful tips on how teens can learn to play successfully and covers a wide range of subjects including music teachers, practicing, instrument choice, and balancing music and other concerns.

Blue Noise - Debra Oswald, (978-1741663754), Fiction
Interest level: 10-12
Charlie's blues band has a strange mix of classical musicians, weirdos, and poverty stricken wannabees.

A Hip-Hop Story - Heru Ptah, (743-483235), Fiction
Interest level: 9-12
Flawless and Hannibal are in fierce competition to become the most famous and successful rap artists.

Shredded - Jerry Scott, (978-0062228536), Fiction
Interest level: 7-10
Jeremy and his fellow band members hit the road in order to create their first recorded album.

Naked on the Bench: My Adventures in Pianoland - Robin Spielberg, (978-0970563354), Non-fiction
Interest level: 9-12
This inspirational book describes a successful pianist's view of her life and its challenges and how she gained success.

Spin It Like That - Chandra Sparks Splond, (978-1426801884), Fiction
Interest level: 9-12, Lexile: 710
Although Jasmine is a talented disc jockey and loves music, her parents disapprove of this high school hobby.

Meet the Beatles - Steven Stark, (978-0060008932), Non-fiction
Interest level: 7-12
This book attempts to explain why the Beatles became the pop icon that changed culture and music forever.

Somebody Everybody Listens To - Suzanne Supplee, (525-422420), Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 830
Retta's dreams of making it big as a country singer turn out to be challenging after she graduates from high school in Tennessee, but she perseveres.

The Girl Who Became a Beatle - Greg Taylor, (978-1429928779), Fiction
Interest level: 5-12, Lexile: 680
Regina's time travel takes her to a place where her band replaces the Beatles.

On This Day in Music History - Jay Warner, (634-066935), Non-fiction
Interest level: 8-12
Learn a fact a day about music history from this book organized as a calendar.

Syd Barrett: Crazy Diamond: The Dawn of Pink Floyd - Mike Watkinson, (978-1846097393), Non-fiction
Interest level: 10-12
This biography for mature teens only by Syd Barrett, the lead member of Pink Floyd, portrays his membership with the famous band as well as his going on to becoming a solo success before his death.

Wildflower - Alecia Whitaker, (031-6251380), Fiction
Interest level: 6-12
Although her family plays bluegrass for a living, Bird Barrett begins to record with a country music label and finds the glamorous world of Nashville quite challenging.