Monday, July 24, 2017

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? 7.24.17

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

Do you know some young readers who are ready for some independent reading?  Pass this list on to them!

Girls, science, math and the arts.  All of those things go together in these books!

Do.  Not.  Miss.  These.  Books.  You've got readers that can't wait for them!

Graphic Novels

Swing it, Sunny
Swing It, Sunny! by Jennifer Holm and Matthew Holm
4/5 stars
I loved catching up with Sunny and her family.  The chapters seemed a little bit more like vignettes than one continuous story.  I think this will work with younger readers, but just like its predecessor, this book does have some mature themes running through it.  And just like its predecessor, the Holms siblings write about them in an appropriate way for young readers.

Middle Grade

Rise of the Isle of the Lost (Descendants #3)
Rise of the Isle of the Lost by Melissa de la Cruz
3/5 stars
I finished this one literally one minute before Descendants 2 came on TV.  Got to watch it as a family - hey, I have a 12 year old.  I am very aware that there is not too much time left and she won't want to spend any time with me!
I read these books and I watched the movie upon request of my child.  Like I said last week, I'm glad that the second and third book in this series is a bit more middle grade friendly than the first book.  I know this series will be popular with middle grade readers.

Forget Me Not
Forget Me Not by Ellie Terry
5/5 stars
I picked this up at NCTE and then it got buried in my piles.  Then my friend Kristen Picone read it and it became a must read!  
This book is powerful as an #ownvoices book.  The MC, Calli, has Tourette's Syndrome.  While I know what it is, and I know of many misconceptions, I don't have a lot of experience with it.  That's why a book like this is powerful.  The author has Tourette's and I can tell the authenticity in the voice of Calli.  While I've read many books that have MCs that have some kind of disability and the author has done significant research, there is something about real life experiences that makes a difference.
I just wonder what would happen, if more and more books are written like this and more and more kids read them.  Would that make an impact on how they grow up, the way they treat others?

One Amazing Elephant
One Amazing Elephant by Linda Oatman High
4/5 stars
Very sweet story about the growing friendship between a girl and an elephant.  
I liked the alternating voices in chapters, although it's hard to read an animal voice without thinking of Ivan.  Although Queenie Grace, the elephant, doesn't have quite as soulful voice as Ivan, it's still one that is going to reach into the heart of young readers.  

Young Adult

Long Way Down
Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds
5/5 stars
Jason Reynolds ALWAYS writes words that make me pause and think.  His books offer me windows that keep me thinking of possibilities and understanding what I might not know or understand.  This book is no exception.  Make sure this book is on your October list!

Currently Reading

Attack of the Not-So-Virtual Monsters (Gamer Squad #1)
Gamer Squad: Attack of the Not-So-Virtual Monsters 
by Kim Harrington
I thought this might be a series that would be a hit with gamers.  Giving it a try!

On Deck

some #mustreadin2017 titles:
Another Brooklyn by Jacqueline Woodson
Hook's Revenge: The Pirate Code by Heidi Schulz

I've read the other two titles in this series the last 2 summers, so time for this one:
The Silver Moon of Summer by Leila Howland

Happy summer reading!


  1. I have to get Forget Me Not. I'm hearing such great things about it. I agree One Amazing Elephant doesn't match up to Ivan, but still a good read and one animal lovers will enjoy.

  2. I will definitely have to find Forget Me Not and I have a lot of Jason Reynolds book reading to do. Ghost was one of my favorite reads of last year.

  3. Forget Me Not is already on my growing list, will see if my library has it without a long hold, Michele. It is good to read about others' challenges, and will create sympathy I hope, but it also might give kids the courage to share their own with others. Thanks also for sharing the new Jason Reynolds, new to me!

  4. Hi, Michelle. Tho I didn't have time to write a "Monday" post this week, I'm reading and ARC of Chasing Augustus- Kimberly N. Fusco's forthcoming middle-grade novel. From a writer's perspective, I find the first person, fast-paced voice really compelling. Also adore the cover. It's a dog. :)

    1. PS Michele, one L. I knew that.
      And AN, not and.
      Should have proofed better!

  5. I read Long Way Down when it was still in manuscript form so I feel like I need to read it again to see if anything has changed -- because I love Jason Reynolds that much and need to read every word he writes. ;)

  6. I just picked Forget Me Not Up at the library! Can't wait to dive in. Especially after reading your words here.

  7. I'm kind of doing horribly with my TBR list since I'm always finding other books I want to read.

  8. I've been hearing so many wonderful things about Forget Me Not - time to order it, I guess!

  9. Sunny Side Up was awesome, so I'm really looking forward to reading Holm's new book. Have a great week!

  10. Forget me Not is now on my list.
    I am so jealous that you have read Long Way Down. Honestly, is there anything Jason Reynolds writes that won't make some of us swoon?

  11. I love that summer has allowed me to keep up with your reading throughout the week so that IMWAYR aren't a surprise :) I love talking books with you!

    Happy reading this week :)

  12. Forget Me Not sounds so powerful, and inspiring, especially for young readers - our conditions are an important and sometimes major part of our identity, but we can be other things to, like successful and inspiring authors!

  13. I haven't read any Jason Reynolds books yet and wonder if they would be good for 4th grade read alouds? Thanks

    1. I think the best fit for a 4th grade read aloud would be As Brave As You. It's a bit longer, though! By the end of the school year, they would be ready for Ghost, although there are some topics you would want to have conversations about! Hope that helps!