Monday, August 20, 2012

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? - Aug. 20

Wow!  It's hard to believe that my #summerbookaday time has almost come to an end.  It's fun to look back and see what I've read over the summer, and it will be great to share with my students very, very soon.

The past two weeks I've read a variety of books.  A little more than a week ago, during #PB10for10 event, I posted a list of 10 nonfiction picture books I loved.  I had literally just purchased (and read) all but one of them, so 9 of those books make my list for this week.  If you haven't checked out these books, you really should.

In addition, I read six adult books.  Some were just guilty pleasures (I love spy/intrigue and beach setting books), but one stood out as a book I would recommend to people looking for something really unique.  It was Heft by Liz Moore.  Heft was recommended to me by a friend who has impeccable taste in books, and once again, she did not let me down. Great story that develops characters over time - since I'm so character-driven when I read, this was perfect. Would highly recommend it to any adult book clubs!!

Children's books I read:

Liesl and Po by Lauren Oliver -- I'm not sure how I missed reading this book when it first came out. But with this author coming for a free visit for our 4th and 5th graders at our school in the beginning of October, I needed to remedy not reading it immediately. So glad I did! I know Lauren Oliver as the author of the Delirium trilogy, which I love, so it makes me happy to know she can write for a younger audience as well.  Liesl is a little girl who recently lost her father and is locked in the attic by her step-mother. Po is the ghostly presence who comes from The Other Side to spend time with Liesl and eventually embarks on a journey with her. Will is an apprentice to alchemist who spies Liesl in her attic window and becomes attached to her without even knowing her.  I love how the three characters' stories intertwine. This will be a great book to share with my students.

Bird and Squirrel on the Run by James Burks -- This will be a fun graphic novel series for kids to follow. Bird is a happy go lucky character, and Squirrel worries about everything. They make a great pair as they have a cat that chases them throughout the book. Fun!

About Average by Andrew Clements -- This is another book by Andrew Clements that I think kids will enjoy, and to which they will relate. The idea of not having anything but average skills in many areas of life seems to be a theme in this time of competitiveness around us. This is a sweet reminder that we all have something special to offer.  For more about this book, check out Bill's review.

The Secret of the Fortune Wookiee by Tom Angleberger -- What a great addition this is to the Origami Yoda series. This book might be my favorite because the focus is more on the girls this time. And it's also interesting to see how Angleberger dealt with Dwight, the originator of the Origami Yoda, not being at McQuarrie Middle School this year. Fun book to add to my Tom Angleberger tub.

Knight of the Lunch Table: The Battling Bands by Frank Cammuso -- I'm happy to be adding this book to my graphic novel bookshelf. The Knights of the Lunch Table series was a well-loved one in my classroom last year, and I predict this book and the other two will be widely read again this year.

Please join Kellee and Jen at Teach Mentor Texts, who are the cohosts of this wonderful Monday event!  I love finding out what others are reading, and start planning my next week's reading using some of the participants ideas. 


  1. Karen, I'm so glad to be reading your posts. You give me such good ideas for the younger readers. I am trying to catch up with my knowledge in this area. Liesl & Po is in our school library & on my list. I will be sure to read it now! Thank you!

  2. Wow! You've had a great two weeks of reading! I kind of lost my steam...

  3. My students love Knights of the Lunch Table. I've been meaning to read Liesl & Po, but haven't gotten to it yet. :)

  4. Glad to hear about Bird and Squirrel - I saw it on Scholastic's new releases and thought it would be a good addition to my classroom library.

  5. Great week!
    I love the Knights of the Lunch Table series and I cannot wait to read the Wookie book.
    I am so glad you read Liesl- it is a fun, unique ghost story.

    Happy reading this week! :)

  6. I just finished Liesl and Po. Great book!