Monday June 23rd, 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. You are guaranteed to find something new to add to your list.

My favourite picture books of the week:

Here I am written by Patti Kim and illustrated by Sonia Sanchez

The wow title of the week. Wordless, graphic style illustrations that are powerful and full of emotion. All about a young boy’s journey to a new country and a new life. Highlighting the myriad of emotions involved: confusion, fear, wonder, possibility . . .

Here I Am #IMWAYR There's a Book for That June 23rd 2014

The book trailer is wonderful.

Dream Dog written by Lou Berger and illustrated by David Catrow

I was attracted to this book by this gorgeous cover and of course recognized Catrow’s unique style from Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon. When Harry can’t have a dog, he imagines one. One that is big and blue and wonderfully playful. This new conjured up canine sticks with Harry for exactly as long as he needs him.

 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That June 23rd 2014

The Very Big Carrot by Satoe Tone

Simple story about the imaginative ideas of six little white rabbits about exactly what they might be able to do with a gigantic carrot. A few pages in I can see a bunch of listeners making very persuasive suggestions. It seems by the end, that these bunnies might have heard! Would be an ideal story time title for the younger set.

 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That June 23rd 2014

The Chickens Build a Wall by Jean-Francois Dumont

A rich story perfect for philosophical discussions about paranoia, acceptance and fear. When chickens discover an unknown hedgehog, they immediately assume he must signal trouble. Their worries and anxiety grow as does the wall they begin erecting. Interesting ending that I won’t reveal here.

 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That June 23rd 2014

The Salmon Twins by Caroll Simpson

Caroll Simpson writes and illustrates such engaging Aboriginal literature.There is a fantastic glossary in the back featuring all of the mythical creatures portrayed in the story. This title is set in a Pacific coastal village and focuses on the values of family, community and ingenuity.

 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That June 23rd 2014

When the Bees Fly Home written by Andrea Cheng and illustrated by Joline McFadden

A many layered story about a young boy and his family who raise bees. Jonathan feels like a disappointment to his stressed out father (a drought does not fare well for the bees) but is able to put his creative energy into making wax creatures. Helping his mom with candles that can be sold at the market turns out to bring many surprises. There are facts about bees woven into the pages through the illustrations but this is really a story of family dynamics. I loved the character of Jonathan – quiet, gentle, thoughtful and vulnerable.

 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That June 23rd 2014

Penguin on Vacation by Salina Yoon

Penguin is an adorable story time character and his adventures and spirit are hugely appealing to children who love these stories. My favourite is still Penguin and Pinecone but this title is also enjoyable.

 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That June 23rd 2014

I also finished two novels

The Ghosts of Tupelo Landing by Sheila Turnage

So first of all this is one wonderful story. Full of humour, mystery and southern charm. Second, Turnage writes so well. The kind of writer where you must stop and reread a sentence and think, “Well, well, well that was just brilliant.” Often. If you have read Three Times Lucky, you will love this title with many of the same characters. If you haven’t read either title – read them both! Middle grade perfection.

 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That June 23rd 2014

Jinx’s Magic by Sage Blackwood

I have been reading this title aloud to my children. If you know the story, you know that much of it is set in the Urwald – a magical forest where trees are not quite like the trees you might be used to. So . . . we took this book along on our forest walk today and found a small clearing to stop and read the final chapter. The story was already very good – this setting made it . . . well, magical. What I love about Blackwood’s Jinx stories is their humour, the unexpected and multi-layered magic and how the fantasy is so unique. For middle grade readers who love fantasy, both Jinx and Jinx’s Magic are ideal recommendations. Jinx is a character with total kid appeal. And as an adult, I must admit to rooting for him throughout! This book was on my #mustreadin2014 list!

 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That June 23rd 2014

Next up?

Our family read aloud will be The Boundless by Kenneth Oppel. For me? Cress by Marissa Meyer.

Reading Goal updates:

2014 Chapter Book Challenge: 44/100 novels complete

Goodeads Challenge: 299/650 books read

#MustReadin2014: 17/30 complete

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 73/65 complete