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?
I had a really productive reading week last week.
First, I want to share a post I wrote yesterday where I re-examine my feelings about a picture book I ashamedly admit thought was "too political" back when I first read it in 2009. I re-read it yesterday and was completely embarrassed by my reaction the first time I read it.
Growth and change as seen through the lens of a picture book
Anyway, now that I've put that embarrassment behind me, here are some other picture books I read and enjoyed (or was perplexed by) last week:
A Sick Day for Amos McGee by Philip and Erin Stead
This book was also a re-read thanks to a bookstore event last week with both Philip and Erin. I liked it even better the second time around.
How Little Lori Visited Times Square by Amos Vogel, illustrated by Maurice Sendak
a strange little picture book. It was published the same year as Where the Wild Things Are and despite the popularity of that book, this one
illustrated by Sendak never really caught on. It's a shame though
because it is a quirky little picture book that has a lot of fun hidden
text in the illustrations that adds to the humor. I found out
about this book from attending the Philip and Erin Stead event mentioned above. At this event, rather than reading from their own books, they talked about their favorite odd and obscure
picture books. This is the first one they talked about in that
presentation and as a result, I had to buy it because I fell in love with its strangeness.
When the Wolves Returned: Restoring Nature's Balance in Yellowstone by Dorothy Hinshaw Patent and Dan Hartman
A true cautionary tale about what happens when humans mess with the ecosystem.
Laika: Astronaut Dog by Owen Davey
It takes a whole heck of a lot for me to give a book one star on Goodreads, but this one reserves that honor. It completely trivializes history and does children zero favors by
changing Laika's fateful end, presumably to protect children from the reality of death. Steer clear of sharing this one with
children. Read it for yourselves, however, to see just how ridiculous it
Finished reading with my ears:
Boston Jane by Jennifer L. Holm
Jenni Holm has an amazing
ability to write a story that you initially think you're not going to
like (as Ruta Sepetys says -- historical fiction is often treated like
the ugly girl at the dance: nobody wants to touch it) and then BAM!
There it is. You suddenly have fallen in love with it and with the main
character. I was initially dubious of Jane's motivations to up and move
to the Pacific Northwest frontier for the sake of marrying a man she
barely knew, but she quietly and unexpectedly grows on you throughout
the course of the narrative. I look forward to reading book 2.
I also finished reading:
Thrive: 5 Ways to (Re)Invigorate Your Teaching by Meenoo Rami
short book packs a punch for new teachers and veterans looking for
inspiration. A great title to give to a new college grad ready to begin
their first teaching job. I'll be writing a longer review of this one on my teaching blog.
The Awakening by Kate Chopin
For an early American lit class that I'm currently taking
Currently (still) reading with my ears:
Panic by Lauren Oliver
Moon at Nine by Deborah Ellis