Jen & Kellee over at Teach Mentor Texts host a meme every Monday that invites people to share the children's and young adult books they have been reading over the past week and what they plan on reading the following week.
Newbery Challenge: Miracles on Maple Hill was a pleasant old-fashioned story about family. An interesting aspect was that the father had returned from war with PTSD and that was having quite an effect on the family. A troubling thing about this book is the roles for females are very narrowly defined with the belief that girls are weak and what they are capable of is determined by the fact that they are female. If they try to go beyond the traditional roles, they are a tomboy. Overall, I did really enjoy the book though.
Non-fiction: Breaker Boys was fascinating. I had a vague idea about child labor in the U.S.'s past, but this book really cracks it open and makes that history come alive. Lola and Tiva was a fun look at an unusual friendship between a young rhino and girl. Where Else in the Wild was very engaging since it is a "look and find"type of book that challenges the reader to see past the animal's camouflage. A Log's Life shows the amazing life cycle of a tree in the forest in simple and clear language.
Picture Book: I read several of these, but the most interesting was Inside the Slidy Diner by Laurel Snyder. My lunchtime reading club had the opportunity to Skype with Laurel Snyder earlier this year and she mentioned this book. Our library system didn't have a copy of it, but I intended to order it at some point. This weekend I found two copies just sitting on a rack at a cute little independent bookstore. I was so excited. What added to the fun is that lemon drops play a large role in this story and I had been eating them on the hour long drive to the store. I don't think I have eaten a lemon drop before this week for at least ten years. The book is spectacularly creepy for a picture book. Loved it.
Young Adult: Netgalley was definitely my friend this week. I got to read an ARC of The Raven Boys by Maggie Steifvater. I will write a more formal review later. To me it is hard to label this book. My best shot is Paranormal Mystery with a dash of romance. However it is labeled, Steifvater has crafted a very compelling tale. I didn't want it to end, but then to my delight, I found out that it is just the first of a series. Bummer since that means there are many loose ends at the conclusion, but fabulous since it is not really the end.
Poetry: What a Day it was at School has some hilarious poems that I cannot wait to share with my students this fall. I know that there will be much laughter and this compilation is perfect for the beginning of the school year. I think my favorite is the one about homework. I can't really share anything about it without spoiling it, but do look for it. You won't regret it.
This coming week: I am probably going to tackle Other People's Children for a professional read. I also look forward to Matched by Condie. I just got it after a long wait from the library. I am just not sure what else I will read. Not because I don't have anything, but rather because there are too many choices. Happy reading!