Monday, April 20, 2020

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 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 Goodreads account, you can see what I have read recently & click on the books to learn more.

Last week on the blog:

Last week in books:

I am finally getting into a bit of a routine and am getting a little more reading accomplished. I'm also building some breaks into my workday and am reading books from my library. That way I'm not always looking at a screen, but I am still doing something that helps me improve at my job.

Green Lantern Legacy - middle grade graphic novel that's a lot of fun. It's basically an origin story of a Vietnamese American superhero. This was my first Bookshop order. You can order online and it helps support any local independent bookstore that you designate. I plan to support The Brain Lair Bookstore owned by Kathy Burnette. She makes it a point to focus on marginalized authors and inclusiveness in books. 

Destiny's Gift - a picture book about a girl and her friendship with the owner of a bookstore. There are financial issues and Destiny tries to help save the store.

Yaffa and Fatima: Shalom, Salaam - This is a retelling of a tale about two friends from different faiths. They both help each other in secret and the result is lovely. I was thinking this would go well with My Grandma and Me by Mina Javaherbin because the grandmother in that one has a friend of a different faith also and it is also a beautiful relationship.

The Water Bears (digital ARC via Netgalley out 4/21/20) is a unique middle grade novel and is quite a gift. The main character is one year out from a traumatic experience and is still dealing with the fallout. Being attacked by a bear is no small thing and he just can't get past it. I loved how this book addressed this stress and anxiety. What I totally loved was the very unique island community that Newt lives in and all of the interesting folks there. 

Dear Evan Hansen - I listened to this one through Libby via my public library. It was a well done audio. I had no idea what the book was about going into it except that it was something on Broadway. Since it was a musical, I was not expecting it to deal with the death of a teen. Also, it was one of those where I kept wanting to look away knowing that things could only end badly. It was a hard one to read even though there were some humorous moments. It also has a nice soundtrack on Spotify that was nice to listen to after knowing the story.

The Witch of Blackbird Pond was a re-read. It is really an excellent work of historical fiction. The one issue I have with it that I didn't notice as a young person when I first read it, is the way that the characters interact and refer to the Indigenous people. It's very much a book that casts them as savages. The mentions are fairly limited, but one plot point does involve fighting and the kidnapping of a white colonist and the Natives are definitely cast as villains.   

When Stars Are Scattered is a collaboration between a graphic novelist and the person who shared this memoir with her. I listened to it on so haven't yet seen the illustrations. I love Victoria Jamieson's work (Roller Girl and others) so am sure those will be fantastic. It's the story of Omar and his little brother as they become refugees from Somalia and are living in a camp in Kenya for many, many years without any biological family members. It's powerful.

How to Make Sunshine (Digital ARC via Netgalley) is a precious book about friends and family. It's aimed at the younger chapter book crowd. There are no super high stakes in this story, but there are many situations that would be familiar to elementary age readers. 

The Coming Week:

I am still reading Stamped by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi (on audio) while I read the original version. I have Dream Work checked out, but I am not really reading it much. It's nice to have it on my device though so I can read a poem here and there. American as Paneer Pie is an E-ARC I'm reading from Netgalley. I'm not sure what else I'll get to this week. Oh, I'm also re-reading Garvey's Choice with a few students I am meeting with via video chats. That's fun. Have a great week!

Reading Challenge Updates: 
#MustReadin2020 - 16/36
#YARC2020 - 22/55


  1. I really want to get When Stars Are Scattered. Graphic novels are one thing that I'm able to read easily right now (most things feel like a struggle), and I have loved Victoria Jamieson's other work. The Water Bears sounds so good. I love having new books to add to my TBR!

  2. I'm looking forward to The Water Bears release, tomorrow. I'm hoping that Overdrive get a copy or else I might have to buy it! I also need to put a hold on Dear Evan Hansen. I'm so glad I get to follow you on Goodreads, Crystal. You are an amazing reader and I always learn about new books from you. Have a wonderful reading week!

  3. I have Stamped, will read it soon & really would love The Water Bears & When Stars are Scattered. Ah, I can't buy them all, but I am doing what I can with my local Indie. Thanks, Crystal, hoping you have a good week coming up!

  4. I feel like I need to read a book in verse or a poetry book this month.

  5. I also really want to get Where Stars are Scattered and I have a copy of The Water Bears I should really get to. Green Lantern Legacy looks good too. Thanks for the post!