Monday April 4th, 2016

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

Each week I share a reading photo of the week This is taken during Reading Workshop. It kind of speaks for itself don’t you think? These two on the bench organized themselves into a little reading partnership, “Let’s each read a page.” I also love the message on the board that a child wrote. It captured the feel in the room – happy readers everywhere.

Monday April 4th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Our #classroombookaday titles this week were especially lovely.

Monday April 4th, 2016 There's a Book for That

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. It’s the best way to discover what to read next.

IMWAYR 2015

On the blog:

I finished up my Slice of Writing challenge for the month of March. 31 days of published writing on the blog! Phew.

Night Before Thinking Musing about back to work after a break

Inspired by student poetry writing and When Green Becomes Tomatoes Poems for All Seasons (listed below) I wrote my own poem about writing spring poems  today we picked spring

Words A Slice of Life post about being grateful that words find me

My first post with the meme Diverse Children’s Books featuring the book: My Two Blankets (pictured below)

Books I enjoyed:

This week it was alll about the picture books!

Where’s the Elephant? by Barroux

Sometimes on this blog I insist that a book must be purchased so it can be shared again and again. Well, okay, sometimes seems like a rare occurrence. I just might do it often. But, take my word for it, I won’t steer you wrong! This book is one of those books. It is beyond a search and find which it seems to be just a few pages in. Not at all. It is a statement about development encroaching on habitat. Of what this means to our world and the animals in it. Powerful. So, powerful. The perfect book to introduce environmental studies. To begin conversations. To worry about. And maybe to inspire change.

Wheres-the-Elephant Monday April 4th, 2016 There's a Book for That

When Green Becomes Tomatoes Poems for All Seasons by Julie Fogliano and illustrated by Julie Morstad

This book of poetry is kind of pure perfection. Julie Morstad’s illustrations. Julie Fogliano‘s beautiful images. I can’t pick a favourite poem. But I have many a favourite line.

When Green Becomes Tomatoes Monday April 4th, 2016 There's a Book for That

A Hungry Lion or a dwindling assortment of animals by Lucy Ruth Cummins

This book is very funny. It requires that wonderful page flipping back and forth phenomenon – “Did that really happen?” I don’t want to give anything away but will say the surprises delighted me. Can’t wait to read this to a group of children.

a-hungry-lion-or-a-dwindling-assortment-of-animals Monday April 4th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Before I Leave by Jessixa Bagley

Such a sweet (but not at all over the top) story of what it is to move away and leave a friend. Bagley tackles emotions so beautifully.

Before I Leave Monday April 4th, 2016 There's a Book for That

My Two Blankets written by Irena Kobald and illustrated by Freya Blackwood

I wrote about this book in this post. Themes of immigration, new friendships, learning a language, adjusting to a new culture and new place.

My Two Blankets Monday April 4th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Always Remember by Cece Meng and illustrated by Jago

This is a story of loss, of what it is to lose a loved one and remember. Full of hope and emotion and the illustrations are STUNNING.

Always Remember Monday April 4th, 2016 There's a Book for That

My Heart Fills with Happiness written by Monique Gray Smith and illustrated by Julie Flett

I bought this for our board book collection.  A book about finding joy! Illustrations by Flett are beautiful. I love that this title features Indigenous children and families. This book is perfect for my classroom.

My Heart fills with happiness Monday April 4th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Snappsy the Alligator Did Not Ask to Be in This Book! written by Julie Falatko and illustrated by Tim Miller

Oh so very clever! The under-enthused and annoyed main character, the irritating narrator, the dynamic between the two of them. What an amusing little book!

Snappsy the Alligator Monday April 4th, 2016 There's a Book for That

The Fun Book of Scary Stuff written by Emily Jenkins and illustrated by Hyewon Yum

This book! A little guy talks about his fears with a dog and the conversations are SO hilarious. I couldn’t leave the book store without this one.

The Fun Book of Scary Stuff Monday April 4th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Thelma the Unicorn by Aaron Blabey

Thelma is a pony with unicorn aspirations. When a unicorn transformation happens to her (this is a great scene) life seems grand. But is fame and attention really a wonderful thing?

Thelma the Unicorn Monday April 4th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Reading Progress updates:

2016 Chapter Book Challenge: 14/75 complete

Goodreads Challenge: 97/400 books read

#MustReadin2016: 12/30 complete

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 15/100 titles

Diverse Books in 2016: 12/50 books read

Up next? I continue with Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys Our family read aloud is Pax by Sara Pennypacker

Diverse Children’s Books: My Two Blankets

I teach in a small school located in the downtown east side of Vancouver. It is a multicultural school with many different languages and cultures represented. My students are thrilled when a new student arrives at our school. They are excited to welcome a new friend and enthused about learning something new from someone new. As the teacher in the room, I am aware of how rich the learning is when a child from another country arrives. When this child has limited or no English skills, the learning is almost the most rich. It is then that we must be the most gracious, the most open, the most creative. Everything becomes about communication and connection.

This beautiful book – My Two Blankets written by Irena Kobald and illustrated by Freya Blackwood (published in Australia in 2014 by Little Hare Books and in North America in 2015 by HMH books for Young Readers) – portrays the reality of moving to a new country from the perspective of a young girl brand new to a place of strange words and new experiences.

Diverse Children's Books: My Two Blankets There's a Book for That

Cartwheel comes to a new country with her Auntie. They have come to be safe but everything is different. She doesn’t understand the strange words spoken or many of the things she observes. She wraps herself in a metaphorical blanket of home, of comfort, of known. When a little girl reaches out in friendship, Cartwheel is drawn to her smile and her persistent offerings of language and friendship. Soon the new strange language sounds softer and full of possibility.

In the story, where Cartwheel has moved from and where she arrives is never clarified. This could be the story of any child moving to a new place to escape war or conflict. It becomes a story for all of us.

I love the illustrations of Freya Blackwood – the loose lines, the strong imagery, her use of colour. Author Irena Kobald was inspired to write this book because of a friendship between her own daughter and a Sudanese child. Both author and illustrator live in Australia.

This would be a fantastic read aloud in primary/early intermediate classrooms.

Diverse Children’s Books is a brand new book-sharing meme designed to promote the reading and writing of children’s books that feature diverse characters. This community embraces all kinds of diversity including (and certainly not limited to) diverse, inclusive, multicultural, and global books for children of all backgrounds.

DiverseKidLit

We encourage everyone who shares to support this blogging community by visiting and leaving comments for at least three others. Please also consider following the hosts on at least one of their social media outlets. Spread the word using #diversekidlit and/or adding our button to your site and your diverse posts.

Interested in joining as a host or an occasional co-host? Contact Katie at 1logonaut (gmail).

We hope this community will grow into a great resource for parents, teachers, librarians, publishers, and authors! Our next linkup will be Saturday, April 16th.

Hosted By:
Katie @ The Logonauts

Mia @ Pragmatic Mom
Blog / Twitter / Facebook / Pinterest / Instagram

Crystal @ Reading Through Life and co-blogger @ Rich in Color
Blog / Twitter / Google+

(Never participated in a linkup before? Please click here for a more detailed step-by-step.)

If you want to share a favourite or recently read diverse title, please leave a comment with the link (current link up technical difficulties) and then head over to Katie’s blog to share your link on the link up. Happy reading!

 

Monday January 11th, 2016

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

Each week I share a reading photo of the week. This week, it was all about #MockCaldecott joy! Here are our winners! 3 honor ttiles and the medal went to The Bear Ate Your Sandwich!

Monday January 11th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Our #classroombookaday titles were gorgeous this week – all about the forest and animals in the woods Next week we will be reading a number of nonfiction titles about animals in winter. These books helped build our background knowledge and vocabulary.

Monday January 11th, 2016 There's a Book for That

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. It’s the best way to discover what to read next.

IMWAYR 2015

On the blog:

Ready for a year of reading? I am with my Must Read novels of 2016

Would you like to make a list and join the community? Link up here: #MustReadin2016 So far there are 24 lists!

For my first Nonfiction Picture Book post of 2016, I shared some #MockSibert predictions

My Celebration post was all about our #MockCaldecott 2016 results

Books I enjoyed:

I am reading for the Cybils (nonfiction titles) and readjusting to being back at work (Anyone else finding this exhausting?) but I did manage to read some lovely books I would like to share.

Who’s that Knocking at My Door? by Reinhard Michl and Tilde Michels (1993)

A colleague lent this to me as she said it reminded her of Out of the Woods by Rebecca Bond – another interesting animal encounter with animals that typically aren’t near each other. This is a rhyming book and a work of fiction but if you can get your hands on it, it pairs wonderfully with Out of the Woods.

 Who's That knocking Monday January 11th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Beautiful Birds by Jean Roussen and E. Walker 

A stunning, poetic ABC book by Flying Eye Books – a publisher I adore more and more. This title is simply stunning.  A perfect gift for bird lovers.

Beautiful Birds Monday January 11th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Separate is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez & Her Family’s Fight for Desegregation by Duncan Tonatiuh

I finally got my hands on a copy of this title and shared it with my family over dinner one evening. We talked for a long time about just the cover which I think is so striking. Such an important story about a family’s fight for their children’s equal education.

Separate is Never Equal Monday January 11th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Tad and Dad by David Ezra Stein

A cheerful little title of parent/child attachment.

Tad and Dad Monday January 11th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Her Mother’s Face by Roddy Doyle with illustrations by Freya Blackwood

Blackwood’s illustrations are the perfect complement to this story of trying to remember details of a mother who has passed away. Honest, real and important. Tells the story of a little girl who experiences sadness and grief as she grows from a child to an adult. While sad, it also offers hope and promise of healing.

Her Mother's Face by Roddy Doyle with illustrations by Freya Blackwood Monday January 11th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Once Upon an Alphabet: Short Stories for All the Letters by Oliver Jeffers

Really? Really, how great is this?! An absolutely unique and amazing alphabet story book.

Once Upon an Alphabet Monday January 11th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Sunny Side Up by Jennifer L Holm and Matthew Holm

I listened to all of the podcasts about this (The Yarn) over the summer and was eagerly anticipating finally reading this graphic novel. It did not disappoint. This book captures not just a time period that is meaningful to me but many things that I feel are brave in a novel (graphic or otherwise): intergenerational relationships, tough family dynamics, strong emotions, life that isn’t all pretty (in this case substance abuse issues).

Sunny Side Up by Jennifer Holm Monday January 11th, 2016 There's a Book for That

2016 Chapter Book Challenge: 2/75 complete

Goodreads Challenge: 12/400 books read

#MustReadin2016: 2/30 complete

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 2/100 titles

Diverse Books in 2015: 3/50 books read

Next up? I continue reading More Happy than Not by Adam Silvera (so captivating) and am reading A Night Divided by Jennifer Nielsen aloud to my family. We are all addicted!

 

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

It’s time for Top Ten Tuesday, a meme created by The Broke and Bookish.

TTT

This week’s topic? Top Ten Auto-buy Authors But I kind of switched it up . . .

I approached this theme with some flexibility.  First, I only included picture books. Second, my list is all about illustrators, not authors (although some both illustrate and write their books). And top ten? Nope. I have twenty. But I split it into two lists of ten in order to kind of follow the rules. 🙂 10 + 10 = 20

My top ten lists this week are all about my auto-buy illustrators. These artists help make picture books that are irresistible.

I read a lot, a lot, a lot of picture books. Narrowing these lists down was a challenge!

When it became apparent that I couldn’t limit my list to just ten, I decided to make a list of female illustrators and a list of male illustrators. Both make the best books ever! I am so excited to honour them here. For each illustrator, I have included my favourite (or one of my favourite) books that they have illustrated.

My ten auto-buy female illustrators listed in alphabetical order:

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Freya Blackwood illustrated Harry and Hopper I love the scratchy, loose lines and the mood Blackwood creates through shading and colour.

harry and hopper Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Lauren Castillo wrote and illustrated Melvin and the Boy I love Nana and her wonderful cape and thought it was wonderfully Caldecott worthy, but I have such a soft spot for this sweet little book.

Melvin and the Boy Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Marla Frazee illustrated All the World It is so absolutely calming and charming and full of all the world’s memories.

All-the-World Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Emily Hughes wrote and illustrated Wild which I am more than a little wild about

Wild Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Suzy Lee created the wordless treasure Wave I am quite sure these waves are moving across the pages here.

 Wave Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Qin Leng illustrated Hana Hashimoto, Sixth Violin – there is one page oh so very full of green that I fell in love with.

 Hana Hashimoto Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Yuyi Morales wrote and illustrated Niño Wrestles the World I already loved this title but then I heard Yuyi read it aloud and I was even more smitten. Such joyous energy and escapades in this book!

Nino Wrestles the World Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Julie Morstad’s illustrations in This is Sadie are swoon worthy. Seriously, this cover!

This is Sadie Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

LeUyen Phan absolutely blew me away with The Boy Who Loved Math

 The Boy Who Loved Math Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Erin E. Stead illustrated the stunning  If You Want to See a Whale If you follow this blog you know I have a serious thing for whales. The one in this book? I find it particularly captivating.

If you want to see a whale Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

My ten auto-buy male illustrators listed in alphabetical order

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Jonathan Bean illustrated Bad Bye, Good Bye which I found wonderfully delightful. Look at the expressions conveyed just on the cover.

Bad Bye, Good Bye Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Peter Brown won me over with his book The Curious Garden that he wrote and illustrated. Doesn’t it make you want to go plant a seed or two or twelve in some unexpected places?

Curious Garden Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Oliver Jeffers just keeps making more books. Picking a favourite is challeging. I’m going with The Heart and the Bottle which will tug at your heart.

heart in the bottle Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Jon Klassen is the Caldecott King but it is his illustrations in House Held up by Trees that I find the most incredible.

househeldupbytrees Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

E.B. Lewis has done so many titles that are powerful but his illustrations in My Best Friend might be my favourite.

 My Best Friend Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Patrick McDonnell’s illustrations are so whimsical and full of teeny tiny characters that are very large. South is gentle and lovely.

south Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Christopher Silas Neal’s books with Kate Messner are stunning but it is illustrations in Lifetime: The Amazing Numbers in Animals’ Lives that I want to celebrate here.

 Lifetime Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Mark Pett won a special award in my room for The Girl and the Bicycle during our Mock Caldecott process He sent a very special gift for his number one fan (see below).

The Girl and the Bicycle Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

John Rocco does many wonderful titles. He wrote and illustrated Blackout which is likely my favourite. The blues. The blacks. Wow. Wow. Wow.

 Blackout Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

David Small does the most delicate, detailed drawings for historical fiction titles. I couldn’t choose my favourite. So instead I picked One Cool Friend which I also love.

 One cool Friend Top Ten Tuesday: Ten plus ten equals twenty auto-buy Illustrators

Who are your auto-buy illustrators? 

Could you choose ten? Or stop at twenty? It’s difficult!

Monday July 27th, 2015

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

I have been sharing a reading photo of the week each week. Now that it is summer, I am not surrounded every day with little readers so . . . I am choosing moments from the year not previously shared. I love this photo of these three girls so engaged writing about their Mock Caldecott choices.

From the classroom 2014/2015 archives:

Monday July 27th, 2015 There's a Book for That

I also have to share this group of books. My daughter is a reading buddy this summer, working with an eight year old girl. She came into my classroom library and selected some books to read with her buddy. Great taste don’t you think?

Monday July 27th, 2015 There's a Book for That

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. It’s the best way to discover what to read next.

imwayr

On the blog this week:

Top Ten Titles that Celebrate Diversity for Top Ten Tuesday

For Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday: Water Connects us All: titles on a water theme.

Celebration: Talking Classroom Libraries

Sunday Reflections: Ten Things I will do again this school year 

Books I read and loved:

Dory and the Real True Friend by Abby Hanlon

I am completely enamoured with Dory. I kind of want her to come to life so that I can teach her. I love her spunk, her wild imagination and her observations about the world. This title is just as much fun as the first Dory book. Both titles will be in my classroom library this fall.

Dory and the Real True Friend Monday July 27th, 2015 There's a Book for That

Squishy McFluff Meets Mad Nana Dot written by Pip Jones and illustrated by Ella Okstad

I don’t always like rhyming text but Pip Jones makes it work in these Squichy McFluff titles about little Ava and her “invisible” cat. Nana Dot gets a pretty smashing hairstyle in this title!

Squishy McFluff Meets Mad Nana Dot Monday July 27th, 2015 There's a Book for That

George in the Dark by Madeline Valentine

So many children are so very afraid of the dark. This title captures how this fear plays itself out in the dark, trying to go to sleep time.

George in the Dark Monday July 27th, 2015 There's a Book for That

Banjo and Ruby Red written by Libby Gleeson and illustrated by Freya Blackwood

I love this story telling team from Australia. This is a tender story of friendship and compassion between farmyard animals.

 Banjo and Ruby Red Monday July 27th, 2015 There's a Book for That

Phoebe and her Unicorn by Dana Simpson

A Heavenly Nostrils Chronicle. Seriously? That should tell you everything about how wonderfully off the wall this graphic novel happens to be. Clever, witty and many shades of absurd. Love it!

Phoebe and her Unicorn Monday July 27th, 2015 There's a Book for That

A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park

Completely engaging, I read this before getting out of bed Sunday morning. Two stories interweave in these pages. Salva’s story of walking from war, from family and from all that he knows and finally coming to America. And Nya’s daily walk for water, a tedious and exhausting walk that she and her family depend on.

ALongWalkToWater Monday July 27th, 2015 There's a Book for That

Updates on my 2015 Reading Goals:

2015 Chapter Book Challenge: 40/80 complete

Goodreads Challenge: 263/415 books read

#MustReadin2015: 15/24 complete

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 52/100 titles

Diverse Books in 2015: 28/50 books read

Up next? I am still reading Black Dove  White Raven by Elizabeth Wein as I was reading multiple novels at the same time. It is absolutely an incredible read. I find myself putting it down for a few days and reading something else just to let it all sink in. This is my book stack for my time away. Always, I bring more books than I will have time to read because you just never know . . .

Monday July 27th, 2015 There's a Book for That

Happy Reading everyone! See you in two weeks 

Monday January 26th, 2015

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

I have been sharing a reading photo of the week each week. This week with all of the buzz of #MockCaldecott, I had many to choose from. But this photo of these two boys quietly reading is my favourite. It captures what happens when there are a few free moments in our class – students grab books and read. Choices and habits that are simple, sure, solid. Love.

For a peek at some related #booklove attached to our  #MockCaldecott, head over to my classroom blog and read about our guessing of title #3 in Aaron Becker‘s trilogy: Journey, Quest , . . . .? 

Monday January 26th, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

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. It’s the best way to discover what to read next.

imwayr

Favourites of the week:

A Perfectly Messed Up Story by Patrick McDonnell

There are many things I adore about this little title. The value it places on books. It’s philosophical musings. The coffee rings. The wit. Lovely, lovely, lovely!

A Perfectly Messed up Story Monday January 26th, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Stormy Night by Salina Yoon

Sweet through and through. A stormy night and a brave little bear (with the help of his family) handles the noises of a storm.

Stormy Night Monday January 26th, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Jonathan & Martha by Petr Horácek 

Playful and fun with lift up parts, cut outs and worms that battle into a tied up companionship, this books has huge potential for our buddy reading collection.

Jonathan & Martha Monday January 26th, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Elizabeth, Queen of the Seas written by Lynn Cox and illustrated by Brian Floca 

What a story! An elephant seal that felt at home in a river in Christchurch New Zealand. When the well meaning townspeople bring her out to the ocean where they assume she will be safer and more content, she manages to return time after time.

Elizabeth-Queen-of-the-Seas- Monday January 26th, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Maudie and Bear written by Jan Ormerod and illustrated by Freya Blackwood

Anything Freya Blackwood and I am a little in love. Interesting reactions to this title. Our little Maudie is full of spunk, personality and . . . .but bear is calm, solid and consistent. Full of patience and love. Would be interesting to talk with children about what they think about the interactions. I think Maudie actually represents many little ones who are quite focussed on self.

Maudie and Bear Monday January 26th, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

I also finished (book #4 from my #MustReadin2015 list) The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson

Lots of love. Lots of pain. Grief and mourning muddled up with falling in love and living. Some stop you in your tracks images and lines. Wow.

The Sky is Everywhere Monday January 26th, 2015 #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Up next? I finished reading Twerp by Mark Goldblatt to my children as our family read aloud. I highly recommend this title if you haven’t read it. It would make an ideal middle school read aloud (Grade 6 and up I think) Tonight we started reading The Shadowhand Covenant (Book Two of the Vengekeep Prophecies) by Brian Farrey

I am reading The Crossover by Kwame Alexander

Updates on my 2015 Reading Goals:

2015 Chapter Book Challenge: 5/80 complete

Goodreads Challenge: 32/415 books read

#MustReadin2015: 4/24 complete

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 5/100 titles

Diverse Books in 2015: 2/50 books read

 

Monday October 14th, 2013

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 reads! The #IMWAYR crowd always has so many fantastic titles to share.

IMWAYR

 

I read quite a variety of picture books this week. My favourites:

Niño Wrestles the World by Yuyi Morales

Before reading this action packed colourful picture book, I had never heard of lucha libre – the theatrical professional wrestling popular in Mexico and other Spanish speaking countries. I was very pleased that Niño with his little white boxers and red face mask was the first hero of the lucha libre world for me. The fact that he outsmarts his opponents with moves like the Tickle Tackle and the Popsicle Slick make him even more endearing. I can see this being a favourite book of many a preschooler with some wild and crazy energy. What fun!

Nino Wrestles the World #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Ganesha’s Sweet Tooth by Sanjay Patel and Emily Haynes 

The illustrations in this story made it quite special. It is a wonderful introduction to Hindu literature and mythology through a quite creative adaptation of how the poet Vyasa convinces Ganesha to scribe the epic poem, the Mahabharata. This story involves delicious sweets and a super jumbo jawbreaker. Part silly, part spectacular, this is a fun visual adventure.

Ganesha's Sweet Tooth  #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Look, a Book! written by Libby Gleeson and illustrated by Freya Blackwood

The text of this title is simple – the premise simply – wow, look where a book might take you – on adventures and rides through imaginative landscapes. I am such a fan of illustrator Freya Blackwood and again, found her illustrations simply magic.

Look, a Book!  #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

The Cat with Seven Names written by Tony Johnston and illustrated by Christine Davenier

If you have ever had a pet that liked to share himself/herself with others very generously (and often motivated by food treats if truth be told) then this is a book to connect to. In this story, a cat wanders in and out of many different lives in a neighbourhood, eventually connecting the individuals into a community and being reunited with his owner who explains that this friendly feline will likely visit again. With themes of solitude and loneliness, this story has a happy feel good ending.

The Cat with the Seven Names  #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Can I keep him? by Steven Kellogg

First published in 1971 – loved the older style drawings by Kellogg. A little boy tries to convince his mother that numerous animals would make the ideal pet. Finally he finds the perfect companion to keep him occupied as Mom is busy with her daily tasks. The fantasy element made this story lots of fun as a read aloud.

Can I keep him?  #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

One Boy by Laura Vaccaro Seeger

Really? Really! Really, Seeger is just too clever. Her books never fail to delight, engage and entertain. Such a wonderful book to share with my class. They were all completely engrossed guessing what would happen as we flipped the page – what word would the cutout reveal? What image? Amazing!

One Boy  #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

Carnivores written by Aaron Reynolds and illustrated by Dan Santat

Oh so, so good. And it scored high on the giggle meter when I read it to my children. Such a clever premise – attempting to have us see these carnivores as well meaning with lots of self control. When true natures win out, Reynolds and Santat have us smiling a little guiltily as we root for these carnivorous characters who just can’t help themselves . . .

Carnivores  #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

I finished The Boy on the Wooden Box a memoir by Leon Leyson

An emotional read. Every story of the war speaks to our humanity – the cruelty and kindness of people, the devastation and hope in such horrific times. This is the story of Leon Leyson, one of the youngest members of Schindler’s list. It is the story of his childhood taken by war, his family and their love, of his time during Nazi occupation in the WWII and of his chance to actually have hope of a future. Highly recommended.

The Boy on the Wooden Box  #IMWAYR There's a Book for That

What’s up next? I just started reading The Thing about Luck by Cynthia Kadohata. Next on the list is Crazy by Han Nolan.

What are you reading this week?