Monday, January 14, 2013

Splendors and Glooms - Looking for Newbery (2013 style) / It's Monday, What Are You Reading?

In an effort to organize my time more efficiently, I decided to make this post both one for our Looking for Newbery series as well as for IMWAYR meme.


So many people were talking about Splendors and Glooms by the masterful Laura Amy Schlitz, I just had to read it. 

As an adult, I absolutely loved this book - the magic, the darkness, the plot, how different characters are highlighted, the cliffhangers, the story plots that are so intricately woven together. All amazing! That being said, I'm not sure how I would use this book with my 5th grade students, but I know that is not a criteria for why a book is awarded a Newbery medal. 

Schlitz is a master storyteller, and Splendors and Glooms is a masterful story.  I would not be at all surprised if this book wins some Newbery love on January 28.


After reading Bill's Looking for Newbery post about The Summer of the Gypsy Moths, I knew I needed to reread it this weekend because for some reason I hadn't purchased it the first time.  Here's what I thought in both my first read and my reread:

I loved it! The author is Sara Pennypacker, of Clementine fame. I really enjoyed this read, and since I sometimes judge a book's success by how many tissues I use while crying at happy or sad parts (even when they're predictable), I can tell you this book had a 5-tissue ending. :)

I will definitely be remedying that not-buying-this-book immediately!


 I also read Twelve Kinds of Ice and Almost Home this weekend.  Both books will be getting their own posts soon, but for now let me just say about both... BEAUTIFUL!!!!

Head on over to Teach Mentor Texts to see what everyone else is reading right now as well.  So many books, so little time!  What a delicious problem to have!


  1. well, I certainly need to read these. I've been trying to read many of the possible Newberys, but haven't covered them all, Karen. I hope that I can get it done in the next couple of weeks. Thanks for highlighting them.

  2. I've been seeing Splendors and Gloom for quite awhile now - and I know what you mean about the disconnect between the Newbery medalists and the books children would prefer to take out from the libraries. Always a contentious issue. That being said, I look forward to the Newbery announcement! So many books that will definitely be added to my to-borrow-from-the-library-list! :) Have a great reading week ahead of you!

  3. I loved Summer of the Gypsy Moths, too, even though some reviewers said it wasn't plausible. I didn't care. Ha.

  4. I was unaware of this Pennypacker book. Oh how my students loved Clementine. Can't wait to share her books with my daughter -- someday.

  5. Didn't Splendor and Glooms win the National Book Award? Is there any correlation between that award and Newbery?

    Anne @ My Head is Full of Books

  6. I also wasn't sure about the kid appeal for Splendors and Glooms, even though I really liked it.

  7. Some books appeal mostly to adults, others mostly to quirky/smart kids. I like it when the latter win prizes, because those kids are my favorites. -- I'm not a teacher, I'm allowed to have favorites :-)