Monday, February 24, 2014

It's Monday! What are you reading? 2-24-14

Originally hosted by Sheila at Book Journey, Jen over at Teach Mentor Texts along with Kellee and Ricki at Unleashing Readers also host a kidlit version of It's Monday! What are You Reading?

So I'm still reading this:
Endangered by Eliot Schrefer 

But I'm bound and determined to finish it this week. Especially since my lit class is on break this week so I'll have some time for pleasure reading.

I'm currently listening to:

I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai

I did finish a few audiobooks last week:
Hattie Ever After by Kirby Larson  

This was a fantastic sequel to Hattie Big Sky. It was just as good as the first book, in my opinion. 

Fortunately, the Milk by Neil Gaiman
I like Neil Gaiman's silly and nonsensical side here in Fortunately, the Milk. I much prefer it to his morose side. The way I recommend reading this is listening to the audio, that Gaiman narrates himself, while also following along with the text for its varying fonts and fun illustrations.

I would LOVE to use this book as a mentor text, having students write their own nonsensical story entitled Fortunately, the _______  (choose your noun here)

King of the Mild Frontier by Chris Crutcher
I really enjoyed listening to Chris narrate the audio version of this memoir. What really stood out for me was chapter 13, which is where he justifies the strong language and less-than-pretty situations he writes about in his books and why he will always write about controversial topics. I immediately ordered a copy of the book after reading that chapter. I will give it to any parent or administrator who challenges a book in my classroom. 

Picture book I loved last week:

The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires
 What a wonderful book to share with students about the importance of stepping away from a project and letting time and distance give you a better perspective. So many great lessons about writing and life in general in this little picture book about a perfectionist and her canine sidekick.


  1. I haven't heard of The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires so I can't wait to read it. It'll be great to have a collection of just these kinds of books.

  2. I agree with you about Hattie Ever After. I love how independent and strong Hattie continues to be in that book. I had not heard before of the memoir by Chris Crutcher. I am definitely going to get a copy now. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Shall watch for your thoughts on I am Malala. Would like to enjoy that soon! :) Good to learn about The Most Magnificent Thing. I'm all about giving good ideas space to brew, would love kids to read/learn about it from a picture book...

  4. I really liked Chris Crutcher's memoir. Thanks for the reminder about Ch 13--think I'll share that with my Adolescent Lit class this semester. We are talking a lot, of course, about controversial topics in YA lit. Now that I know Gaiman narrates Fortunately the Milk, I know how I want to read that one. I really like him as a narrator. I need that Ashley Spires book! Right now! Glad to hear Hattie Ever After is as good as the first book. Eventually I'm going to get around to reading it.

  5. I don't know this Ashley Spires title but now I am on the lookout! I agree that both Hattie titles are fantastic. I want my daughter to read both of them. Good luck in getting Endangered finished. I really loved that title.

  6. I loved the audiobook for Fortunately, the Milk and I read Hattie Ever After but did listen to the first one. Maybe I will re-read with my ears. I have to check out the Ashley Spires book. I hadn't heard of it. Thanks for sharing your list.

  7. Hi Beth, I like your idea for writing Unfortunately the .... stories. Unfortunately my 4th graders do not love that book and I thought they would. How is I am Malals on audio?

  8. I loved Malala's, memoir, Beth - what a courageous young woman.

  9. The Most Magnificent Thing sounds like a picturebook I must find to discuss the creative process and the importance of 'incubation' or just letting ideas simmer. I have yet to read Fortunately the Milk, I heard that the book is a fun ride. :)

  10. Endangered is on its way, Beth, & I loved that Hattie Book too. Thanks for the reviews of the Crutcher bio-his books are terrific, & of The Most Magnificent Thing-sounds so good.

  11. Beth - I'm excited to see many books on your list that I recently saw at a large Reading Conference in Toronto. The Most Magnificent Thing was one I bought - I fell in love with it and, like you, saw many lessons evolving from it! I was also excited to see an ARC of a picture book about Malala that will be released in a few months. A perfect companion to I Am Malala for younger students. Thanks for sharing!

  12. Poo, I tried to request The Most Magnificent Thing through interlibrary loan and we don't have it in the system yet! (I guess I will have to wait until it is released! haha)
    So many people I know have loved Fortunately, the Milk, but I despised it...I don't know why I am so alone in this! I almost think I should re-read it...but I really don't want to ;)