Sunday, February 10, 2013

It's Monday! What are You Reading?

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.

You may find more complete information about what I am reading at Goodreads or by clicking on the Goodreads widget along the side of my blog.

It seems so weird that I won't have a Newbery Challenge section now. Hmph. But, that frees up time for other reading and no I am not going to start in on all of the Newbery honor books. If I did do such a crazy thing, I would start now and work my way back and that is a fact.

Picture Books

I have been on the lookout for picture books that show the experiences of indigenous peoples of our continent and When I was Eight fits the bill. This is a first-hand account of an Inuit girl who went to a residential school. While there, attempts were made to strip her culture from her. Young readers will see the many injustices, but also see the resilience of Olemaun, or Margaret as she is renamed. This is a picture book version of a portion of the previously published book Fatty Legs. I was able to read it through NetGalley and it is set to be published later this month.

Traction Man and the Beach Odyssey was okay, but I just didn't find the storyline terribly interesting and what is up with the offering of cocktails? Also, the female dolls were more than slightly annoying with their stereotypical behavior. Traction Man was fabulous in the first book, but this one isn't nearly as well done.

Library Lily was a cute book about the love of reading. I could totally relate to Lily's constant need to read. What Does Peace Feel Like? seems to be the perfect book to generate discussion about peace. I think I will use it with some of my younger classes.

Shane Evans wowed me again with We March. It is amazing that he can tell so much about the March on Washington with pictures and just a few words. He brings history alive for even very young readers.

As I think back on Stick Man's Very Bad Day I do NOT know what to say. I showed some of the illustrations to many different people and I laughed so very hard as I read it several times. It is bizarre and rather pointless, but it struck my funnybone. Steve Mockus has used pictures of actual signs from around the world to create a storyline of calamitous events for this stick man. Too funny if you are in just the right mood. Possibly irritating otherwise.


My goodreads review has some quotes and information about this thought-provoking book about culturally responsive teaching. Over and over again, I read that we need to get to know our students and their families and that the families are resources for us that we could utilize. There was so much more here that I will likely have to re-read at a later date.

Middle Grade
In preparation for our author visit with Michael Scotto, I read Latasha and the Kidd on Keys. I appreciate this sequel to Latasha and the Little Red Tornado

Both books are realistic fiction that shows us a family with warts and all. There are happy times, frustrating times and heart crushing times. Scotto doesn't provide a fairy tale ending, but one that is realistic and believable and hopeful. I look forward to seeing him at our school in a few weeks to share his books and about his writing.

The Coming Week
I am in the midst of two different audio books. One is a playaway so I am listening to Jellicoe Road while exercising. This is difficult since it is a rather confusing book, but I will stick with it. The other is Mark of Athena. I am listening to this while driving for the most part. I just started reading Kate Messner's new mystery Hide and Seek that I got on NetGalley. So yeah, I am "reading" three different books in three different formats. :)

I am also about to jump into some F&Gs which stands for "folded and gathered." This was new vocabulary for me. Anyway, they are pre-pub picture books and I get to read them. I am kind of holding them as treats and haven't started them yet. I just like knowing that they are sitting there waiting for me.

Have a great week of reading!


  1. Don't know any of these- off to Goodreads!

    Happy reading this week! :)

  2. I really appreciate the recommendation of When I was Eight - I read Fatty Legs too and liked it a lot. My daughter really enjoyed it as well - especially all of the photographs in the back. This picture book format is fantastic though for the younger readers. I will keep my eye out for it.