Sunday, July 20, 2014

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? 7.21.14

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.

I had a couple of days where I didn't read anything this week!  Well, that should say I didn't finish anything!  But then I found some creative ways to get my reading in :)

Picture Books

Dog Days of School
Dog Days of School by Kelly DiPucchio
5/5 stars
LOVE this book!  It's the Freaky Friday boy-dog version!  Such a kid-friendly book for point of view discussion.  And kids will LOVE seeing the boy drink out of the toilet :)

My Pet Book
My Pet Book by Bob Staake
4/5 stars
Can't wait to use this one with a few others at the beginning of the year to talk about a "readerly life".  I'll use this book to talk about how books make us feel.

It's an Orange Aardvark!
It's an Orange Aardvark! by Michael Hall
4/5 stars
This was my surprise read of the week.  Reminds me of Ed Emberly's Go Away Big Green Monster with the little cut outs.  Loved the ideas the ants came up with - great for description, word choice, adjectives!

Take Me Out to the Yakyu
Take Me Out to the Yakyu by Aaron Meshon
4/5 stars
2015 IL Monarch nominee
Cute story about a boy comparing American and Japanese baseball.  I liked the author's notes at the end.

Informational Texts

Dare the Wind: The Record-breaking Voyage of Eleanor Prentiss and the Flying Cloud
Dare the Wind by Tracey Fern
3/5 stars
Add this story about Eileen Perkins and her determination to navigate and sail the open seas.  Another good text to add to your strong American women unit!

Shining Star: The Anna May Wong Story
Shining Star:  The Anna May Wong Story by Paula Yoo
4/5 stars
Thanks to Crystal (@librarygrl2) for sharing this one originally.  I had read at least one story that Anna May Wong had been mentioned in (by Lisa See), so I was interested in learning more.  This biography showed how her perseverance during a time when American was biased against Chinese got her where she ultimately dreamed of being - on the silver screen!

The Pilot and the Little Prince: The Life of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
The Pilot and the Little Prince by Peter Sis
5/5 stars
My goodreads review:  I really enjoyed reading this biography because it portrayed the author of The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-Exupery, in a manner different than expected. de Saint-Exupery lived a much different life than I had previously known, and Sis does an amazing job detailing de Saint-Exupery's passion in such a fascinating way. I loved the basic text about his life, but it's really the illustrations that bring this book to life. Sis makes the captions in the illustrations so different than usual informational texts, I found myself pouring over each one. It was a joy to read about someone who followed their true passion and made it a reality.

Middle Grade

Super (Supers of Noble's Green, #2)
Super by Matthew Cody
I finished listening to this book this week.  I really enjoy the "Powerless" series.  I haven't heard as much about this series out on Twitter and on blogs, but I highly recommend it, especially for reluctant boy readers.  It has a mystery, suspense, high action, super heroes. Both Powerless and Super are great reads.  Can't wait for Villainous, the conclusion of the trilogy, on Aug. 26!

Adult read

Mambo in Chinatown
Mambo in Chinatown by Jean Kwok
I really enjoy this author.  She has written 2 books that I highly recommend.  If you've read and enjoy Lisa See, you'll enjoy Kwok's stories.  This one centers around ballroom dancing, which was enjoyable for me!

Currently Reading

The Great Greene Heist
The Great Greene Heist by Varian Johnson
getting ready for #sharpschu on Wednesday!

The Enchantress Returns (The Land of Stories, #2)
The Land of Stories:  The Enchantress Returns by Chris Colfer
I had to take a break from this one to finish a few others, but I really like it so far!

Professional Reading

Reading in the Wild: The Book Whisperer's Keys to Cultivating Lifelong Reading Habits
Reading in the Wild by Donalyn Miller
I love Donalyn's writing style.  It's straight forward but driven by such passion and energy!  I'll be posting my final #cyperPD post about this amazing book on Wednesday.  I hope you've been able to check out some of the conversations people have been having.  It's amazing getting to read everyone's thoughts and comments.

Still reading my 2 other professional books, but have gotten farther in them!

Hope you've had a great reading week!


  1. I need to read The Great Green Heist. Yet another book on my towering TBR pile.

  2. It looks like you had a wonderful week with such highly rated books! Dog Days of School is just in time for some of the schools who are going back to school already. I live in the Northeast, so it is still awhile for us (thank goodness!). I miss the classroom, but I have much to do before then! I hope you have a wonderful week! Happy reading!

  3. You're absolutely right that any book that features drinking out the toilet is a guaranteed hit in our house. On the wish list it goes!

  4. Hearing such lovely things about My Pet book - I need to get my hands on it!

  5. Haven't read any of these, but really need to. My Pet Book sounds great!
    And I've had Donalyn's newest book since November, so I really need to read it soon.

    Happy reading this week! :)

  6. Thanks for mentioning the point of view aspect of Dog Days of School. I will keep an eye out for that one. I am reading China Dolls (Lisa See) right now & it made me think of the Anna May Wong book. I think we read the same books, just in the opposite order. :)

  7. Lots of fun choices! You have me intrigued with an orange aardvark ... always looking for great books to encourage word choice!

  8. Shining Star sounds like a PBB that I have to add in my Pinterest Board, thanks so much for sharing that title. I am a little ambivalent about Bob Staake's illustration style, and I've read a few reviews of this book in particular. The book I always use to students to introduce the whole idea of the reading life is Book Speak by Laura Purdie Salas - very effective too.