Monday, March 21, 2016

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? 3.21.16

IMWAYR 2015 logo

This weekly post comes from Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki at Unleashing Readers.  It's a great source to find new books to use with your students.

Last Week's Adventures

Use these biographies on strong, American women for a variety of mentor text lessons!  Check them out here.

So many of you are participating in the SoL March Challenge.  Many of your classrooms are too.  Do you talk to your students about having a writer's life?  Use these books to help make your point!

Picture Books

Swatch: The Girl Who Loved Color
Swatch: The Girl Who Loved Color by Julia Denos
4/5 stars
I loved the illustrations in this book!  The contrast of Swatch - the girl who could tame colors - in her black and white and the vibrant colors in the book.  This one is going on my long list for 2017 Mock Caldecott.
This book would be fun to use for theme too - what freedom means, is it ok to keep things locked up - and lessons learned.

Chuck and Woodchuck
Chuck and Woodchuck by Cece Bell
3/5 stars
Cute story about friendship.  Two friends need a little nudge in their friendship.
Sometimes we all need a Woodchuck in our lives to help us make friends!


When Green Becomes Tomatoes: Poems for All Seasons
When Green Becomes Tomatoes by Julie Fogliano
5/5 stars
This is my new favorite poetry collection.  I love the poems.  I could pour over the illustrations for days.  Julie Morstad is absolutely one of my favorite illustrators.
The collection is divided into seasons.  I think the summer poems are my favorite, but there are some real truths in many of the poems!

Young Adult

Red Queen (Red Queen, #1)
Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
4/5 stars
Oh, I loved this one!  A bit predictable, but I thought it still had something more than most dystopian/special powers books I've read lately.  I really liked the main character, Mare, and even though she is clearly in a battle with herself over a boy, it wasn't over the top and too romantic.  The conflict between classes was an interesting one.  I'm looking forward to reading #2!

Currently Reading

The 5th Wave (The 5th Wave, #1)
The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey
I bought this book when it first came out and like so many others, it got put to the side.  So many books... you know the story.  But my brother asked to borrow it so I figured I should read it.  Glad I'm finally getting to it!  The nice thing is I have the second one waiting and then only a couple of months before the third one comes out.  I like that waiting period!

It's Spring Break, so I should have lots of time to read, right?  Nope.  Looking at my schedule and trying to figure out where I'm going to find time.  Why do we always fill every available time with things to do?  Here's to reading!


  1. I enjoyed Red Queen too and did the same thing with The Fifth Wave. Only I donated it to my HS Media Center when I didn't get to it. Come see my reading week here. Happy reading!

  2. Both The 5th Wave and Red Queen sounds like interesting reads. I thought the cover for When Green Becomes Tomatoes looked familiar and so I checked out the illustrator. It is Julie Morstad who did This is Sadie and Swan.

  3. My librarian friend just read Red Queen and loved it! She said it is a must read, and if you and her love it, then it must be!
    Love hearing about picture books from you also; helps me add to my TBR!

    Happy reading this week :)

  4. I think I must have Swatch & the new Julie Fogliano book, Michele. I did love her others by her, too. I've put off Red Queen, but will get to it soon. Another is already out! Thanks for sharing and for the bios too. My latest to read is the Dorothea Lang book. Find some time to read during your busy week!

  5. Thanks for telling us about When Green Becomes Tomatoes. We are going to blog about poetry books during the month of April so we'll add this to the TBR pile.

  6. Spring Break starts for me in 3 days. You've got some great suggestions for me, as I plan to do relax and try to read as much as possible! Hope you're enjoying your Spring Break!

  7. I just adore Julie Morstad, I'm so excited every time I find out about another book that she's illustrated!

  8. Ah! The girl who wrote Swatch was a high school friend! Her sister and I were close, and she was a year above me in my brother's grade. I am so proud of her. She is a passionate, incredible artist!

  9. When Green Becomes Tomatoes caught my eye - love the Fogliano and Morstad collaboration. Read The Red Queen a few weeks back, you're right in noting that it is a tad predictable - and Mare is not just toying with one guy, but THREE! Takes the love triangle in YA even one step further. :)