It is time for another Monday post. Hopefully, you have already been to see the other posts at teachmentortexts and unleashingreaders to see what other avid readers are enjoying lately. Thanks to Jen, Kellee and Ricki for continuing to host.
Spring is the most distracting of reading seasons for me. I continue to re-read a lot of my District Battle of the Books choices (there are nine) and it seems like I have overbooked in NetGalley and in my ARC sharing group Book Portage. There are far too many great things to pick up right now, and that was never more apparent than when I looked at the four books I wrote were “on deck” for this week in my most recent post and realized I had only really touched one of them. Well, here is what I did read this week.
Books I Enjoyed This Week
This feels like a very Spring like book. I have several books in my library that feature plant life and the beginning of the growing season but I am happy to be seeing more and more own voices books featuring Indigenous peoples describing plant gathering using a narrative non-fiction approach. This title by Inhabit Media takes place near Clyde River, Nunavut and tells the story of an Inuktitut boy who lives with adoptive parents in Ottawa, but returns to Nunavut in the summer to spend time with his biological family. Like it’s companion book, A Walk on the Tundra, this story is a little heavy on words for a picture book, but it has a lot of information about life in the north that it wants to convey. The book is key for the information it passes on, not so much for the story. The end matter is also good.
Wow! Was this book ever a great read. And here come a few small spoilers, but less than Goodreads. An emotional story of a girl who sees the abuse her father gives to her mother and sister and decides that is enough is enough. She grabs her sister and heads for Chennai to start a new life. This new life is filled with challenges around poverty, the children being young, her sister being developmentally disabled and more. This is a Global Read Aloud pick for the fall of 2019 and it is nearly a perfect middle grade GRA choice as far as I am concerned. There is lots to discuss, it is not very long, and students will not want you to stop reading. I gave this to a colleague who thanked me for the Sunday morning cry after starting reading late Saturday night. It is that hard to put down.
This book was passed to me by the publisher. It is another short and powerful read. Charlie (Charlotte) has a family history project and decides to research a relative that her family believes perished in the Holocaust. The more she begins to dig around, the more her love for her great aunt grows, as they have much in common. The mystery is at the heart of this tale, but also family, music, relationships and more and it is a light 170 page package. It is a thoroughly modern setting and yet readers will also learn about the history of Vienna and Budapest, so it also feels like a historical fiction in addition to a mystery. With likable characters, and a well rounded family/support group realistically involved, I could see a lot of my students enjoying this book.
This is a really interesting picture book about kids stumbling upon an abandoned house. It features some rhyming text by Julie Fogliano and great illustrations by one of my favourites, Lane Smith. This is a book I have to read more slowly because you really could stop on most of the pages and read the text, take in the pictures, and think about the many possibilities in front of you. Most of my library groups prefer a book with a faster pace, but I think as a teacher of younger students, I could use this lovely book.
Reading A House That Once Was, I remembered that I had recently purchased this book which is a great group of memory making poems from all four seasons starting with Spring and ending with Winter. This is a book of poems you could use all year. The imagery is wonderful and it would bring about lots of discussion with students. The art work is also really good.
I continue to re-read Hello Universe to prepare for my District Battle of the Books, part of our event is a team quiz competition using questions from our nine books. I am writing the questions for this book right now. It is a fun re-read. My family is getting more and more into Endling as it gets a little darker.
I am between books at the moment but have gone back to last week’s post to see that I was considering three books I never got close to reading and I also found one on my NetGalley account that I need to read before its release at the end of the month.
That pretty much sums up where I have been and where I am heading this week. I hope to check out what you have been reading recently as well. Have a great reading week!
7 thoughts on “The Middle of April! What are you reading?”
The Bridge Home is a perfect Global Read Aloud pick. I could not stop thinking about it long after I finished it.
I remember feeling so nostalgic when I read A House That Once Was. These days, it would be very difficult to slip into an old abandoned house. With city zoning and regulations, they’re usually torn down or blocked off quite quickly. But the book sure took me back to my childhood days of exploration (when anything seemed possible and we loved finding some surprise treasure that no adults knew about). The Bridge Home was so sad, but sooooo good! And Searching for Lottie is a new-to-me title that I’ll add to my list. I hope you’re able to get to your “on deck” books this week. I enjoyed Kat Greene Comes Clean — examining a mental illness that I wasn’t very familiar with. And I’m hoping to get my hands on Extraordinary Birds soon. It looks very good! Have a wonderful week, Aaron!
I adored The House That Once Was and The Bridge Home, also When Green Becomes Tomatoes and Endling the Last makes me want the next one now! I’ll look for A Walk On The Shoreline. It & A Walk On the Tundra are new to me & sound good. Thanks, Aaron!
I love the cover of A Walk on the Shoreline, and then when I saw the illustrator, I said, of course! Thanks so much for this review of The Bridge Home. It was on my list but upon reading your remarks here, I discovered that my library has it as an audiobook. I now have a reserve on it.
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I know exactly how you feel – there are so many book stacked on shelves, stacked on virtual shelves… all I need to get to at some point. And when I should say no to books, more arrive. But I’m excited to read them to! I guess it’s not a bad problem to have 🙂
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I see quite a few faves here – mainly A House That Once Was and When Green becomes tomatoes – both books I loved so much. I just placed A Walk on the shoreline on my Goodreads to-find stack. 🙂
A Walk on the Shoreline looks like one I’d enjoy. I loved The Bridge Home. You have some others there I’ve read and enjoyed. Happy reading.