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. You are guaranteed to find something new to add to your list.
Because last week I hadn’t finished any novels, I am starting with the fact that I managed to finish both titles I had on the go.
A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness Illustrations by Jim Kay
Yes, I now see why people rave and rave about this book. Beautifully tragic. Grief. Anger. Pain. Necessary steps on a journey towards healing and acceptance. Unforgettable. And whoa, can we say Jim Kay? These drawings are spellbinding.
The Killing Woods by Lucy Christopher
I really liked Stolen by this author. This title just didn’t pull me in in the same kind of way. It was okay but . . not great. An easy book to put down and some parts of the story just irritated me. Like the terrible grammar Damon used – but not consistently. I was expecting more . . .
Picture books I enjoyed:
Grandfather Gandhi written by Arun Gandhi and Bethany Hegedus and illustrated by Evan Turk
Wow. Wow. Wow. These illustrations are simply incredible! I read the story once and then just picture walked my way through it multiple times again. Gorgeous. Also important messages about inner peace and resolve. Big shoes to fill when Gandhi is your grandfather. But bigger lessons to learn. My only complaint – I wish more of Gandhi’s story was shared in the back of the book. Midway through reading this title to my own children, we stopped so I could give them more background info via the internet. I would need to develop background knowledge with my students for them to fully get everything from this story.
Hansel and Gretel by Rachel Isadora
No surprises with the story line here – it’s the usual Hansel and Gretel story. But, the illustrations – wow! Set in the forest of Africa, this version is bright, colourful and features native animals and foliage. Gorgeous.
The Fort that Jack Built written by Boni Ashburn and illustrated by Brett Helquist
Jack has built a fantastic fort. Piece by piece, his family reclaims portions of it and it slowly disappears. Rhyming. Repetition. Delightful for buddy choral reading.
A featured read aloud:
Ape written by Martin Jenkins and illustrated by Vicky White
After finishing The One and Only Ivan, I knew I had to share this title with my students
Ape is a visually stunning book! A book to pore over again and again marvelling at the details – both visual and written. Vicky White’s close up portraits and lifelike illustrations fascinated us while Martin Jenkins’ text provided so much new information it was difficult to turn a page without endless questions and observations. We used this title to prompt “turn and talk” sessions and to do some summary writing responses.
The students had some great questions like:
- How many hours in a day do baby bonobos stay attached to their mothers in a hug?
- Just how viscous can chimp fights be?
- How long does it take gorillas to build their nest each night?
- Doesn’t the smell of durian fruit start to make orangutans ill?
- Would any of these apes get along with other apes (like bonobos and gorillas?)
- Which ape is most like us?
Up next?I have just started The Ghosts of Tupelo Landing by Sheila Turnage
Reading Goal updates:
2014 Chapter Book Challenge: 42/100 novels complete
Goodeads Challenge: 281/650 books read
#MustReadin2014: 16/30 complete
Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 69/65 complete