Monday, June 24, 2013

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? - June 24

I attended the All Write conference in Warsaw, Indiana this past week, and left with two important things:
  1. a rekindled passion to do all types of writing (including blogging more often and participating in #TeachersWrite), and
  2. an ARC of Wake Up Missing by Kate Messner, due out September 10
That second part is what I want to talk about first.  OMG!!  I loved the mystery and adventure that Kate had put into her Capture the Flag series, but she took writing a page-turner to an entirely different level with Wake Up Missing.  Granted, the target audience might be a bit older (5th grade and up, probably), but the possibility of DNA engineering, chases through the Florida swamps, alligators lying in wait, made this a book I could not put down once I began.  I find it lovely when one author pays respect to another in a book.  In a very subtle way, Kate Messner gives a nod to Laurel Snyder and her book, Bigger Than a Breadbox -- it is mentioned several times as the book the narrator is reading, but it is cleverly done.  The book is never mentioned by name, but if you know the book, the descriptions of the plot line make it very clear (reminiscent of how A Wrinkle in Time is referenced many times without its title in When You Reach Me).  Put September 10 on your calendars right now or get this book pre-ordered, especially if you teach 5th grade or middle school.  Wake Up Missing is not to be missed!

The other book I finished this weekend is The Hero's Guide to Storming the Castle.  Our heroes are in trouble again, especially Liam, and it takes the entire group and their combined strengths (though some of their "strengths" are hysterical!) to persevere.  A perfect follow-up to The Hero's Guide to Saving Our Kingdom.

I also had to read The Great Santini by Pat Conroy for one of my adult book clubs this week.  I normally love everything this man has ever written, but am having a very difficult time with this book.  I have to be very invested in the characters of the story, and there is one character in this book I just can't stand.  I have about 75 pages left to read before Wednesday, so I'm hoping something turns around in how I view this man.  But, I have to say, Pat Conroy can really develop a character and a setting, and that is equally true in The Great Santini.

Books that are up next for me (not counting my professional reading right now):
  • finish The Real Boy by Anne Ursu this week
  • reserve and read Spy School and Spy Camp, both highly recommended by Tony
  • have 6 choices from the public library for my next adult read; not sure which one will be "the one"
  • reread The Water Castle after hearing so many rave reviews from other people
 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. You read some good books it seems, Karen. Lucky to get that arc from Kate! I read The Great Santini so long ago and all I remember is that it was supposed to be about his father. It's about an abusive father, right? Sounds as if you have good goals for the next week!

  2. Lucky you to get Wake Up Missing! I'm looking forward to that one. I'm reading Hide And Seek this week! Happy reading. :)

  3. Thanks for the review of Wake Up Missing! Shall anticipate this fall and preorder! :)