Project Description


The Boy Who Was Raised by Librarians

by Carla Morris
illustrated by Brad Sneed

This humorous tale of a curious young boy and his single-minded quest for knowledge is a heartfelt and affectionate tribute to librarians everywhere.

Every day after school Melvin goes to the library. His favorite people—Marge, Betty, and Leola—are always there behind the reference desk. When something interests Melvin, his librarian friends help him find lots and lots of books on the subject. When he collects creepy bugs in a jar, they help him identify, classify, and catalog the insects. As the years pass, Melvin can always find the answers to his questions—and a lot of fun—in the library. Then one day he goes off to college to learn new things and read new books. Will he leave the library and his friends behind forever?

Readers will enjoy Brad Sneed’s delightful illustrations that colorfully capture the fun-loving spirit of Carla Morris’s story about the contagious enthusiasm of learning.

Format: Hardcover
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-1-56145-391-7
Publication Date: 3/1/2007
Page Count: 32
Size: 10-3/4″ x 9-5/8″
Age Range: 4 – 8
Language: English
Format: Paperback
Price: $7.95
ISBN: 978-1-68263-123-2
Publication Date: 8/1/2019
Page Count: 32
Size: 10-3/4″ x 9-5/8″
Age Range: 4 – 8
Language: English
AR Level: 4.0
F&P: GRL O, Gr 3, Genre RF
Lexile: 720L
Themes: Reading, Friendship, Learning


“A curious boy discovers the library is the best place to be and librarians are the best people to know in this lighthearted homage… Morris clearly gets what makes librarians tick, and Sneed’s humorous watercolor illustrations capture the soul of ‘how librarians are’ in his perfect renditions of the mission-driven Marge, Betty and Leeola in action. Kids should get a kick out of the geeky Melvin, his supportive clan of nurturing bibliophiles and his so-very-logical career choice.” ―Kirkus Reviews, STARRED REVIEW

“Morris is-you guessed it-a children’s librarian herself, and her enthusiasm for the field permeates her narrative. But it’s Sneed’s animated, startlingly accurate depictions of contemporary libraries that make the story engaging…Sneed makes it possible for readers to smell the very bindings of the books and hear the shuffle of feet across the carpeted floor. This title will be a surefire hit with librarians.” ―School Library Journal

“With humor, hyperbole, and repetition, author Carla Morris stresses all the ways Melvin gains from his relationship with the librarians. The more Melvin learns at the library, the better he does in school…This is a delightful book for 4-8 year olds. It would also make a great gift for your favorite librarian.” ―About Children’s Books

Read More

“You can use this picture book to teach older students about good writing elements…Superb pictures offer further discussion as you and your child note the various parts of the library, the emotions illustrated, age progression, and more…Exemplifies what a quality picture book should be.” ―Home Educating Association Reviews

“This is a fun way to introduce all of the things that a library can teach you and what services and activities they may provide…” ―A Book Worm’s Burrow

“This is a good book and I recommend it because the illustrations are bright, lively and engaging and the teaching qualities of libraries and librarians as good sources for children to have as where they can find answers to many of their curiosities.” ―Chat with Vera

“Not only is the story cute and fun, but the illustrations are colorful and quirky – the perfect compliment for the adventures taking place. Definitely a keeper, and one I look forward to sharing with my future little library-going children.” ―A Word’s Worth

Read Less


Best Children’s Books of the Year (Starred) –Bank Street College of Education, 2008

Comstock Book Award –Minnesota State University Moorhead, 2008

Kansas State Reading Circle Recommended Reading List (Starred, Primary) –Kansas National Education Association, 2008

Read More

Kansas State Reading Circle Recommended Reading List (Kansas Titles) –Kansas National Education Association, 2009, 2010, 2012

Kansas Notable Books –Kansas Center for the Book, 2008

Show Me Readers Award (Nominee) –Missouri Association of School Librarians, 2009-2010

Volunteer State Book Awards (Master List, Grades K-3) –Tennessee Association of School Librarians, 2008-2009

Beehive Award (Nominee, Children’s Picture Book) –Children’s Literature Association of Utah, 2008-2009

Flicker Tale Children’s Book Awards (Nominee, Picture Books) –North Dakota Library Association, 2008-2009

The Best Read Aloud Picture Books –Curriculum Materials Center at Minnesota State University Moorhead

Children’s Crown Award (Nominee) –National Christian School Association, 2009-2010

Friends Medallion –Virginia Beach Friends School, 2007

Read Alouds too Good to Miss –AIME, 2009

Read Less

You May Also Like

Meet the Author

Carla Morris is a children’s librarian. She lives in Utah.

Meet the Illustrator

Brad Sneed has illustrated almost twenty picture books, some of which he has also written.  He lives in Kansas. You can visit his website here.