Monday, May 10, 2021

It's Monday! What are you reading?

Square that says #IMWAYR It's Monday! What are you reading?

It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a meme hosted by Kathryn at Book Date. It's a great way to recap what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and to plan out your reading and reviews for the upcoming week. It's also a great chance to see what others are reading right now...you just might discover your next “must-read” book!

Kellee Moye, of Unleashing Readers, and Jen Vincent, of Teach Mentor Texts decided to give It's Monday! What Are You Reading? a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children's literature - picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels, anything in the world of kidlit - join us! We love this meme and think you will, too. We encourage everyone who participates to visit at least three of the other kidlit book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.

If you go to my Storygraph account, you can see what I have read recently & click on the books to learn more.

Recent Blogposts:
Asian Books Challenge chart. It has 26 sections. Each has either a letter of the alphabet or an image of a book cover that starts with a letter of the alphabet. A through F have book covers already like Abby Spencer Goes to Bollywood, The Boys in the Back Row, Count Me In and more.

What I've Been Reading:
nine book cover images of the titles listed below
six book cover images with some of the titles listed below
From a Whisper to a Rallying Cry: The Killing of Vincent Chin and the Trial that Galvanized the Asian American Movement provides many details from Vincent Chin's killing and what happened afterward. It examines some of the history of Asian American activism that resulted. Dr. Sarah Park Dahlen and Edith Campbell had an online discussion about the book last week. I didn't get the book in time to read and attend, but did appreciate the discussion questions posted on CrazyQuilt Edi.

Last Night at the Telegraph Club is a fantastic YA historical novel about a young girl in San Francisco who ventures into the club where lesbians are frequent patrons. She is discovering a lot about herself and what kind of life she envisions for herself. The relationships are well done and I really enjoyed seeing San Francisco through the main character's eyes. 

Plenty of Hugs is a sweet picture book that shows a loving family through daily activities. 

Go for Broke Regiment is a brief (almost too brief) nonfiction title that shares the history of a regiment during WWII that was made up of Japanese American men. It does mention the internment of Japanese people, but could have shared a lot more information. 

Somewhere in the Unknown World (adult nonfiction) is a collection of stories from refugees told through one author, Kao Kalia Yang. She is a brilliant writer and the stories are often hard to read for the tears, but they also show  strength and hope.

A Story About Afiya is a poetic picture book about a young girl and her fantastical dress.

Most Days is by the same person who wrote Most People and focuses on paying attention to the here and now. 

It's Been a Pleasure, Noni Blake is a fun adult rom-com that gets pretty steamy as Noni sets out to discover what makes her happy. 

The ABCs of Black History is a great nonfiction picture book that shares exactly what the titles says.

The Most Amazing Bird is a sweet and humorous picture book about a child, grandparent, and a noisy crow. The child is puzzled about why the grandmother enjoys the bird, but after time, comes to understand.

Islamaphobia: Deal with it In the Name of Peace provides a lot of helpful information about Islam, some of hate directed at Muslims, and what options young people have in many different situations. 

Twenty-one Steps is a lovely book about the tomb of the unknown soldier and those who guard it. 

Cherry Blossom and Paper Planes is a picture book about two young friends and what happens when one of them moves away--how they find a way to stay connected.

In My Mosque is a beautiful picture book about mosques and what happens there. 

Disability Visibility is an excellent collection of essays from disabled folks speaking about the issues that are important to them. I found it to be extremely educational and will continue to follow the editor Alice Wong online because there is so much to know about the disability community and I am woefully ignorant in this area.

The Coming Week: I'll be reading the sequel to Saints and Misfits by one of my favorite authors - S.K. Ali and will be re-reading The Boy in the Black Suit for a book group. Otherwise, I'm not sure what will come my way. Have a great week!

Saturday, May 8, 2021

Asian Books Challenge

The podcast Books and Boba is a lot of fun and this month they are hosting an Asian Books Challenge that I'm participating in though I am not getting it done everyday. Here is some of what I've done so far.

A chart with spaces for each letter of the alphabet. The first six boxes have the covers of books inside them instead of letters. The books are listed below.

Picture Books
A - Astrid and Apollo and the Starry Campout by VT Bidania
B - Big Read Lollipop by Rukhsana Khan
C - The Collection by Duachaka Her
D - A Different Pond by Bao Phi
E - Elephant in the Dark by Mina Javaherbin
F - Feast of Peas by Kashmira Sheth

A chart with spaces for each letter of the alphabet. The first six boxes have the covers of books inside them instead of letters. The books are listed below.

Middle Grade
A - Abby Spencer Goes to Bollywood by Varsha Bajaj
B - The Boys in the Back Row by Mike Jung
C - Count Me In by Vasha Bajaj
D - Dumpling Days by Grace Lin
E - Everlasting Nora by Marie Mirand Cruz
F - Flamer by Mike Curato

A chart with spaces for each letter of the alphabet. The first six boxes have the covers of books inside them instead of letters. The books are listed below.

Young Adult
A - The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan
B - Banned Book Club by Kim Hyun Sook, Ryan Estrada, & Ko Hyung-Ju
C - Cat Girl's Day Off by Kimberly Pauley
D - The Downstairs Girl by Stacey Lee
E - Emergency Contact by Mary H.K. Choi
F - Forest of Souls by Lori M. Lee

A chart with spaces for each letter of the alphabet. The first six boxes have the covers of books inside them instead of letters. The books are listed below.

Adult
A - Active Voice by P. Kristen Enos with Heidi Ho and Casandra Grullon
B - Bamboo Among the Oaks edited by Mai Neng Moua
C - China Rich Girlfriend by Kevin Kwan
D - Disability Visibility edited by Alice Wong
E - Even This Page is White by Vivk Shreya
F - First Comes Like by Alisha Rai

I'll do an update or two before I finish it all off. Check on the hashtag #asianbookschallenge or via @booksandboba on Twitter or Instagram if you'd like to see what other folks are sharing. 

Monday, May 3, 2021

It's Monday! What are you reading?

Square that says #IMWAYR It's Monday! What are you reading?
It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a meme hosted by Kathryn at Book Date. It's a great way to recap what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and to plan out your reading and reviews for the upcoming week. It's also a great chance to see what others are reading right now...you just might discover your next “must-read” book!

Kellee Moye, of Unleashing Readers, and Jen Vincent, of Teach Mentor Texts decided to give It's Monday! What Are You Reading? a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children's literature - picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels, anything in the world of kidlit - join us! We love this meme and think you will, too. We encourage everyone who participates to visit at least three of the other kidlit book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.

If you go to my Storygraph account, you can see what I have read recently & click on the books to learn more.

The Coming Week: I am reading It's Been a Pleasure, Noni Blake and listening to Disability Visibility and will likely finish both this week. I plan to read a few ARCs too. Have a great week!

Thursday, April 22, 2021

#MustReadin2021

A bookshelf with the tag #MustReadin2021 and information about the hosts that is included in my first paragraph.The #MustReadin.... is a reading challenge that originated with Carrie Gelson at There is a Book for That and I've been participating since 2014. It's a group of folks who are trying to whittle down the list of books on our To Be Read shelves. I've really enjoyed being part of this reading community each year and am happy to be able to join in once again. This year it is being co-hosted by Cheriee Weichel at Library Matters and Leigh Ann Eck at A Day in the Life.  

Here is my list for 2021 via a new reading app called StoryGraph if you want to find out about any of the specific titles. 

20 book cover images are shown in four rows of five.

Here is the list typed out so that I can come back and highlight them as I finish reading them. 
  1. We Are Not Free by Traci Chee 
  2. Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists: A Graphic History of Women's Fight for Their Rights by Mikki Kendall with A. D'Amico
  3. The Proposal by Jasmine Guillory
  4. Foreshadow: Stories to Celebrate the Magic of Reading & Writing YA edited by Nova Ren Suman & Emily X. R. Pan
  5. Don't Read the Comments by Eric Smith
  6. Simmer Down by Sarah Smith
  7. The Girl and the Ghost by Hanna Alkaf
  8. Snapdragon by Kat Leyh
  9. Wink by Rob Harrell
  10. The Other Half of Happy by Rebecca Balcárcel
  11. Risk. Fail. Rise: A Teacher's Guide to Learning from Mistakes by M. Colleen Cruz
  12. Outside, Inside by Leuyen Pham
  13. Teaching for Black Lives by Wayne Au, Dyan Watson, Jesse Hagopian
  14. Cultivating Genius: An Equity Framework for Culturally and Historically Responsive Literacy by Gholdy Muhammad
  15. Efrén Divided by Ernesto Cisneros
  16. The Okay Witch by Emma Steinkellner
  17. Wildcard (Warcross) by Marie Lu
  18. Being with Dying: Cultivating Compassion and Fearlessness in the Presence of Death by Joan Halifax
  19. Superman Smashes the Klan by Gurihiru & Gene Luen Yang
  20. The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks About Race by Jesmyn Ward
It appears I've read half so far this year. 10/20 is not bad. Of those, these six are the ones that I enjoyed the most and shouldn't be missed. 

We Are Not Free: YA - one of the best books I've read about the Japanese imprisonment during WWII.
The Proposal: Adult - another fabulously funny romance from Jasmine Guillory.
Snapdragon: Middle Grade Graphic Novel - realistic fiction and the characters are really well done.
Cultivating Genius: Professional Development - a fantastic look at an equity framework designed based on Black literacy societies of the past. So, so good. I'm going to read it again.
Superman Smashes the Klan: YA Graphic Novel - Gene Luen Yang hits it out of the park here and really does a great job of showing some of the history of the Klan within a Superman story. The end notes about the original radio show and other background info are a highlight.
The Fire This Time: Adult Nonfiction - memoir, essays, and poems around race as a sort of response to Baldwin's earlier writing.

I look forward to reading the other half of this list over the next year and also seeing what others have been enjoying. Happy reading!

Monday, April 12, 2021

It's Monday! What are you reading?

Square that says #IMWAYR It's Monday! What are you reading?
It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a meme hosted by Kathryn at Book Date. It's a great way to recap what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and to plan out your reading and reviews for the upcoming week. It's also a great chance to see what others are reading right now...you just might discover your next “must-read” book!

Kellee Moye, of Unleashing Readers, and Jen Vincent, of Teach Mentor Texts decided to give It's Monday! What Are You Reading? a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children's literature - picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels, anything in the world of kidlit - join us! We love this meme and think you will, too. We encourage everyone who participates to visit at least three of the other kidlit book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.

If you go to my Storygraph account, you can see what I have read recently & click on the books to learn more.


Last Week in Books:

The images above are the three books First Comes Like (a cute adult rom-com), The Collected Poems of Audre Lorde (I've been reading this one for quite a while. It is worth the time though), and Beetle & the Hollowbones (a middle grade graphic novel fantasy that was fun).

The Coming Week: I am in the dark about what I will be reading, but will likely pick up something by a Muslim author as Ramadan will be starting. I do have the ARC for Misfit in Love so perhaps I'll get to that one. Have a great week!

Sunday, April 11, 2021

Books for Readers Experiencing Loss

Book covers: The Forever Sky, Where do They Go? A Map Into the World, The Rabbit Listened, The Rough Patch

A good friend asked me for a list of books that might be helpful when children and families have lost a loved one. No one book is going to be perfect for all readers at all times, but I looked for books I've read dealing with life, death, loss and/or grief that may help create a space for helpful conversations. If you know of others or have found that any of these could be harmful rather than otherwise, please share your thoughts in the comments.

Death and how some people respond

Books covers for Death is Stupid, The Funeral, A Last Goodbye, The Phone Booth in Mr. Hirota's Garden, The Purple Balloon

Boats for Papa by Jessixa Bagley

Death is Stupid by Anastasia Higginbotham

The Funeral by Matt James

The Heart and the Bottle by Oliver Jeffers

A Last Goodbye by Elin Kelsey and Soyeon Kim

A Map Into the World by Kao Kalia Yang and Seo Kim

The Phone Booth in Mr. Hirota's Garden by Heather Smith and Rachel Wada

The Purple Balloon by Christopher Raschka

The Sad Book by Michael Rosen

The Scar by Charlotte Moundlic and Olivier Tallec

The Shared Room by Kao Kalia Yang and Xee Reiter

Where Do They Go? by Julia Alvarez with Sabra Field

Death of a grandparent

Book covers of Saturdays Are For Stella, Grandmother's Visit, Ocean Meets the Sky, Grandpa's Stories, and The Yellow Suitcase

The Forever Sky by Thomas Peacock and Annette S. Lee

Grandma Lives in a Perfume Village by Fang Suzhen and Sonja Danowski

Grandmother's Visit by Betty Quan and Carmen Mok

Grandpa's Stories by Joseph Coelho and Allison Colpoys

Ocean Meets Sky by Terry Fan and Eric Fan

Saturdays are for Stella by Candy Wellins and Charlie Eve Ryan

The Yellow Suitcase by Meera Sriram and Meera Sethi

Death of animals

Book covers of Always Remember, The Dead Bird, An Ordinary Day, The End of Something Wonderful, and Ida, Always

Always Remember by Cece Meng and Jago

Big Cat, Little Cat by Elisha Cooper

Blue by Laura Vacaro Seeger

Ida Always by Caron Levis and Charles Santoso

The Dead Bird by Margaret Wise Brown and Christian Robinson

The Day Tiger Rose Said Goodbye by Jane Yolen and Jim LaMarche

The End of Something Wonderful by Stephanie V.W. Lucianovic and George Ermos

The Goodbye Book by Todd Parr

Goodbye Mousie by Robie H. Harris and Jan Ormerod

An Ordinary Day by Elana K. Arnold and Elizabet Vukovic

The Rough Patch by Brian Lies

Not directly about death, but affirming books and those that address strong emotions

covers of the books Life, All Around Us, All Because You Matter, You Matter, and My Heart

All Because You Matter by Tami Chales and Bryan Collier
All Around Us by Xelena Gonzalez and Adriana M. Garcia
I'm Sad by Michael Ian Black and Debbie Ridpath Ohi
My Heart by Corinna Luyken
Life by Cynthia Rylant and Brendan Wenzel
The Rabbit Listened by Cori Doerrfeld
When Sadness is at Your Door by Eva Eland
You Matter by Christian Robinson 

Sunday, April 4, 2021

It's Monday! What are you reading?

#IMWAYR It's Monday! What are you reading? Sharing picture books, early readers, middle grade books, and young adult books for readers of all ages. Hosted by www.unleashingreaders.com and www.teachmentortexts.com. This text is centered over a background of bookshelves.
It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a meme hosted by Kathryn at Book Date. It's a great way to recap what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and to plan out your reading and reviews for the upcoming week. It's also a great chance to see what others are reading right now...you just might discover your next “must-read” book!

Kellee Moye, of Unleashing Readers, and Jen Vincent, of Teach Mentor Texts decided to give It's Monday! What Are You Reading? a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children's literature - picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels, anything in the world of kidlit - join us! We love this meme and think you will, too. We encourage everyone who participates to visit at least three of the other kidlit book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.

If you go to my Storygraph account, you can see what I have read recently & click on the books to learn more.

Last Week on the Blog

Cover image of Sisters of the Neversea which shows the siblings in the story. There are two sisters and one much smaller brother.
Review: Sisters of the Neversea

Last Week in Books:
These are the four cover images to go with the books described below.
We had a five day weekend for what we call our spring break, that happens to coincide with Easter, so I had a little extra time for reading. My young adult choices this week were pretty good. Superman Smashes the Klan was an excellent graphic novel. I had heard Gene Luen Yang speak about this when he visited our local library before COVID and had been looking forward to it. It has very interesting information in the back matter. He also included a lot of factual information about the KKK within the story. It really reminded me of a podcast I had listened to called The Birth of the Ku Klux Klan.

The two in the middle, Once upon a Quinceañera and Sunny Song Will Never Be Famous, were both rom-coms and strangely enough they both involved tech. One is about a family preparing for a quince and the other was an ARC and is about a girl going to tech detox summer camp. Both were fairly lighthearted and had a lot to laugh about. 

When We Were Infinite, much like Kelly Loy Gilbert's previous books, was an emotional read. I won't be forgetting it any time soon. It's very well written and was painful to read.

four cover images that correspond to the titles listed below

The Trouble with Hating You, Girl Gone Viral, The Marriage Clock, and How Sweet It Is are all adult rom-coms. They all made me laugh and smile, but none of them will likely remain in my memory for a lengthy amount of time. They were fun to read though. 

Two cover images. One has an adorable baby polar bear and the other has a line of burnt out matches.

I also got to read two adult nonfiction books. The Loneliest Polar Bear: A True Story of Survival and Peril on the Edge of a Warming World tells of an orphaned polar bear that was raised in zoos. It includes information about climate change and the effect that has on the Indigenous folks in the arctic along with a lot of other considerations beyond just the rescue of the bear and how that went. It was pretty enthralling. Burn it Down: Women Writing About Anger was pretty amazing. I enjoyed hearing from a wide variety of people sharing their thoughts and experiences around anger. 

The Coming Week: 
four cover images that go with the titles mentioned below.

I've started an adult novel called Real Life that takes place in a midwest college town and since we live in such a town, it makes it appealing. I've also started the third book in the Nina Soni early chapter book series. I'm still listenening to This Way Madness Lies, and of course I am still reading a poetry collection by Audre Lorde. I wish you the very best in reading this week.