Monday, April 2, 2018

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?


It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a community of bloggers who link up to share what they are reading.  For more information and to find out what other bloggers are reading check out the host blogs: Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers.

What I've Been Reading...


New Shoes by Sara Varon

Written in a graphic novel format, this is a charming and funny story about a donkey in a South American jungle on a mission to find tiger grass so he can make shoes for his favorite singer, Miss Manatee. There is also information about the plants and animals of the jungle included throughout the book. The illustrations are bright and colorful and amusing. The author included photographs of Guyana that she used for inspiration at the end of the book. This is a fun book, but it also has a message about doing the right thing and will help readers understand another part of the world.

Cody and the Heart of a Champion by Tricia Springstubb

Cody is dealing with a lot of changes in her life. Her friend Pearl has joined the soccer team. Her brother Wyatt is spending more time with his girlfriend. Spencer is making a museum under his porch and Cody doesn't know why. As in the previous books in the series, Cody navigates the ups and downs of childhood and learns life lessons. This series is realistic, relatable, and interesting and it has been popular with some of my students. Thanks to Candlewick Press for sending my book review group, #BookExcursion, an advance reader's copy of the book.

Polly Diamond and the Magic Book by Alice Kuipers

Whatever Polly writes in her new turquoise leather notebook comes true. She becomes invisible, turns her little sister into a banana, and makes her house into one that is much bigger. Polly learns that what she writes is not always exactly what she wants. As a teacher, I loved Polly's character because of her imagination and love of words and writing. This is a transitional chapter book for readers who like magic, imagination, and a little bit of silliness. I received an advance reader's copy of this book, thanks to the publisher, at the National Council of Teachers of English Annual Convention. The book publishes in May.

Until Tomorrow, Mr. Marsworth by Sheila O'Connor

In this thought-provoking story told entirely in letters, eleven-year old Reenie Kelly is determined to save her brother from the Vietnam War draft. This is also a story of unlikely friendship as Reenie writes letters to a recluse who lives on her paper route. This book gives insight into the conflict occurring during the time period while also telling a story about family. I received an advance reader's copy of this book, thanks to the publisher, at the National Council of Teachers of English Annual Convention.

18 comments:

  1. I'm really looking forward to Until Tomorow. Cody does well with my 6th graders, but Polly Diamond seemed a little young. Looks like you've gotten lots of reading done!

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    1. Cody is one my upper elementary readers will read, but, I agree, that Polly most likely will appeal to younger readers.

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  2. Polly Diamond & Until Tomorrow sound like great, but different, stories. Do you know Same Sun Here? Also in letters! Thanks, Lisa!

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    1. I don't know that one. I'll have to check it out. Thanks!

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  3. I have Until Tomorrow, Mr. Marsworth on my TBR list. I've heard some debate over the comparison to The Wednesday Wars, so maybe I'll have to read those back-to-back. :) In any case, I love historical fiction so I'm excited to get my hands on it ASAP. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. I have never read The Wednesday Wars. I love historical fiction, too, and I found it interesting to read about a time period that I haven't read too much about.

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  4. I loved Until Tomorrow Mr. Marsworth, and the Cody book too!

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  5. New Shoes still isn't available at my library, I was hoping it would be! Is it one I want to purchase?

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    1. It's one I'm going to purchase. I like the format and it will be good for those readers who are interested in reading graphic novels but can't yet read some of the ones more appropriate for upper elementary.

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  6. I haven't read any of Tricia Springstubb's Cody books, but I did enjoy Every Single Second. Have you read it.
    After reading in the comments that Until Tomorrow, Mr. Marsworth compares to The Wednesday Wars, I'm definitely looking for it!

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    1. I have not read Every Single Thing. I'll have to check that one out.

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  7. I just got New Shoes! I am really excited to read it! The size is really intriguing to me. Your review makes me excited to read it!

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    1. I like that it's divided into chapters, but each short so it will be accessible for some of my readers who aren't quite ready for the more advanced graphic novels.

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  8. Until Tomorrow looks really great, and loved your descriptions. Will be on the lookout for it.

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    1. It was interesting to read about the time period that I don't read too much about.

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  9. Polly Diamond is very popular with my students (Grade 3) - I have been sharing the ARC.

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  10. I really enjoyed Sweater Weather and Other Stories by Sara Varon, so I’m definitely looking forward to checking out New Shoes!

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