Monday March 3rd, 2014

It’s Monday! What are you reading?



Join Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing Readers and share all of the reading you have done over the week from picture books to young adult novels. Follow the links to read about all of the amazing books the #IMWAYR community has read. One of the very best ways to discover what to read next!

This week my reading was somewhat interrupted for a wonderful reason (#wwuclc) and a not so exciting one (report card writing jail) So I didn’t finish as many books as usual but I was transported to the reading/writing/thinking worlds of these amazing authors/illustrators/photographers at Western Washington University’s Children’s Literature Conference: Jennifer Holm. Steve Sheinkin. Laura Vaccaro Seeger. Nic Bishop. Wow! 

 #wwuclc #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

I had the huge honour of getting to introduce Nic Bishop and showed a slideshow of my students’ questions and comments about his photographic work. Here’s a little peek at some of the thoughts shared:

#wwuclc Nic Bishop #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

I plan to share more about this day in my #celebratelu post on Saturday (including how exciting it was to meet these fellow #NerdybookClub members: L to R Lorna Wheaton, Adam Shaffer, me, and Shannon Houghton).

 Pacific Northwest #nerdybookclub #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

On to the books I read this week:

Please, Louise written by Toni Morrison & Slade Morrison and illustrated by Shadra Strickland 

Full of poetic language this book delivers the message: books can be the answer to our fears. The message that reading makes a difference is a strong one. It does seem a little strange that the little girl is out wandering all alone in her neighbourhood. I can see children wondering this. Love the art.

Read here to see more of the art in this book (and some that didn’t make the final copy) featured on the blog Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast.

Please, Louise #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Dreaming Up: A Celebration of Building by Christy Hale

I requested this from the library after seeing it on a #nf10for10 list. Such creative brilliance! This title highlights possible kid version structures of actual buildings. for example Habitat 67 in Montreal could be “recreated” using lego bricks.

One by one, block by block, plastic shapes interlock.

Dreaming Up #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Paul meets Bernadette by Rosy Lamb

Still not sure how I feel about this book. What a cover and the art continues to be gorgeous throughout. I love what I took to be the message: The world might be small but with love/companionship it feels large. New perspective changes everything. Just not sure if this book completely pulls it off. I like it, I think. Love it? Not totally.

 Paul meets Bernadette #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Dragon Quest written by Allan Baillie and illustrated by Wayne Harris 

This was our BLG book this week and I haven’t had time to share student reviews. The illustrations are particularly powerful. If you read the book you will discover why. I also liked this book because it brought up some dragon nostalgia for me – when my children were probably 4-7 years old, they were obsessed with dragons and we read all kinds of dragon stories. Their obsession is probably what launched me into being a fantasy reader. One of my particularly amusing and clever children summarized why I liked this story after we discussed it. His words here:

Ms. Gelson likes this book because 1. It’s a book 2. No dragon was harmed 3. There were monsters but it tells how to outsmart them.

Dragon Quest #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Dave the Potter: Artist, Poet, Slave written by Laban Carrick Hill and illustrated by Bryan Collier 

What a story about an artist (and slave) who carved short poems into the pots he crafted. The power in just two lines is amazing. His story and his history were literally carved into the sides of these pots and jugs.

Dave belongs to Mr. Miles/

wher the oven bakes & the pot biles ///

July 31, 1840

 Dave the Potter #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Brimsby’s Hats by Andrew Prahin

I read this book after reading this wonderful review by Travis Jonker. I can’t add much to his brilliant review – what I was intrigued by – the gentle themes of friendship, loneliness, simplicity and creativity. Worth finding.

 Brimsby's Hats

Next up? First of all I plan to read a LOT to make up for all the time I have missed this week. I am having page withdrawal or some other kind of bookish ailment . . .

Still reading (because report cards take hours and hours and hours) Small Medium at Large by Joanne Levy and read alouds with my children: The Shadow Throne by Jennifer Nielsen and Saving the Ghost of the Mountain: An Expedition Among Snow Leopards in Mongolia written by Sy Montgomery with photographs by Nic Bishop (I now have my own copy signed to my children from Nic Bishop :-))

Reading Goal updates:

2014 Chapter Book Challenge: 12/100 novels complete

Goodeads Challenge: 114/650 books read

#MustReadin2014: 7/30 complete

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 38/65 complete

22 thoughts on “Monday March 3rd, 2014

  1. You still accomplished a lot of reading even with your busy schedule and report card jail. Isn’t it great to meet up with your Twitter PLN? It makes the world such a smaller, more wonderful place to live.

  2. Love seeing the pics & hearing the small bits about your conference-really sounds awesome, Carrie. I got Shadow Throne, but still haven’t started, & I’ll look for Please, Louise. Thank you!

    • Thanks Linda. It was a spectacular day. I am excited to dive back in to The Shadow Throne with the kids. We missed a few nights of reading when I was away and because of my report card focus. Hate when that happens.

    • #wwuclc was fantastic! I felt lucky that I just had to cross the border and that my husband came with me and loved it almost as much! As an art teacher, he found Laura Vaccaro Seeger fascinating.

  3. That’s quite the line-up at #wwuclc! For many, many reasons, including this conference, I wish I lived in the Pacific Northwest! (Someday, someday….) Loved the picture of some of my Twitter PLN! My boys love dragon books, so I’ll have to find Dragon Quest. Dave the Potter is one of my favorites–Hill does a remarkable job coming up with a story about this largely unknown artist, and of course Collier’s art is superb as always. The cover of Paul Meets Bernadette really appeals to me, but this sounds like one I should wait to get at the library. Haven’t seen Dreaming Up before–that’s one I’d like to have! I am OBSESSED with nonfiction PBs these days! So many good ones!

    • It is a lovely place to live! It would be wonderful if you lived close! Maybe one day will be sooner . . . This Dreaming Up title is really great – but definitely for younger readers. I think Paul Meets Bernadette will definitely appeal to some. It is just . . . not sure. Doesn’t quite do it for me. But I do love the art!

  4. Thanks for blogging about some books even though you were in “report card jail.” It was so nice to see pictures of your kids holding their questions for Nic Bishop. What a terrific way to introduce him. We can’t wait to read your celebrate post of Saturday to learn more about the event.

    • Report card jail is a terrible place to be! I have now escaped and entered presentation prep jail (not quite so horrible) Was so exciting to hear all of these presentations at the conference. And Nic Bishop is amazing! An honour to introduce him!

  5. Isn’t if fun to meet blog & Twitter friends in person? The conference sounds amazing, and I love your students’ thoughtful statements about Nic Bishop’s amazing books. Thanks so much for sharing!

    • Thank you! My students LOVE Nic’s photos – these photos were the result of 4 questions I asked them to think about. Turned out very cute. It was so special to meet these fairly “local” #nerdybookclub friends! Meant a lot to me.

  6. Wow – what a panel of authors! How exciting! And it’s always fun to meet Nerdy Book Club pals in person. 🙂 I just saw Bryan Collier at Dublin Lit. He was great – I love his illustrations in Dave the Potter. Have you seen Knock Knock yet?

  7. I love the look of Building Up – this seems to be a recent theme in picture books I’ve noticed! Building and inventions! Your conference pals look lovely – what fun you had and also your students intro must have been such a gift to Nic Bishop! See you tomorrow! : )

    • I think you are right – re the exploration of building, creating, engineering. It was a wonderful conference. You would have LOVED the stories about the craft, the process and the magic of children’s literature. And Nic Bishop, wow! Could have listened to him for many more hours.

  8. I fell in love with Dave the Potter a few years back. I’ve always felt that it was a hugely powerful book. Looks like the conference was both fun and meaningful! So many great authors/illustrators. I’m looking forward to reading your thoughts about it. I have the Morrisons’ The Book of Mean People – this one I haven’t seen yet. Thanks for sharing! 🙂 Have a great reading week, Carrie!

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