Monday, August 28, 2023

Recent Reads

Every Monday, I share books I have recently read. I also participate in It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?, a community of bloggers who link up to share what they are reading. To find out what other bloggers are reading, check out the host blogs, Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers, or follow on Twitter at #imwayr. 

Recent Reads...

Bruce and the Legend of Soggy Hollow by Ryan T. Higgins

Bruce continues to be one of my favorite book characters. Bruce doesn't have any holiday spirit, especially when it comes to Halloween, but his friends force him into participating in an enactment of a scary story. Bruce's role in the play is amusing and the legend is interesting with just a tiny bit of spookiness. Another humorous addition to the series.

Hopefully the Scarecrow by Michelle Houts and illustrated by Sara Palacios

Hopefully stands in the garden where he loves listening to the girl read him stories filled with adventure. One spring, the girl, mysteriously, is not there to place him on his perch or read to him. Although he is alone he remembers the girl's stories and this gives him courage and hope. This is a sweet story about friendship and the power of stories. 

Invisible Things by Andy J. Pizza and illustrated by Sophie Miller

This is an interesting and smart book about things that are invisible. It starts off by exploring senses and then mood and emotions. Definitely a book to spark conversation.

Pumpkin Day at the Zoo by Susan Meissner and illustrated by Pablo Pino

Visitors to the zoo bring pumpkins for the animals to enjoy. A variety of animals, from armadillos to wildebeests, delight in the special treat. The rhyming text includes fun vocabulary. This is an amusing fall-themed read. There is a note at the end explaining that some zoos accept pumpkin donations which is not something I knew about before.

That Flag by Tameka Fryer Brown and illustrated by Nikkolas Smith

Wow, this book is important and powerful. The author's note at the end explains that the book was written to help readers understand that the Confederate flag is a symbol of hate and racism and so much more than a way to express Southern pride. A must-read.

Yenebi's Drive to School by Sendy Santamaria

Yenebi and her sister wake up at four in the morning to go to school each day, as their drive involves crossing the border from Mexico into the United States. Based on the author's own experience, this lovely story explores the efforts and dedication that it takes for some children to get to school. 

See the Ghost: Three Stories about Things You Cannot See by David LaRochelle and illustrated by Mike Wohnoutka

Another book about invisible things. This one has three stories, each about something that can't be seen - a ghost, the wind, and an incredibly small fairy. Like the previous two books in this early reader series, kids will love it. 

Reggie: Kid Penguin by Jen de Oliveira

Reggie is a kid penguin who has adventures that human kids will be able to relate to. Each of the stories in this early reader graphic novel are amusing. Lots of kid appeal. 

Something Like Home by Andrea Beatriz Arango

Laura does not want to live with her aunt where social services brought her after her parents went to a rehab hospital. As she navigates her life with a new family and home, she finds a dog in need of rescue and believes that this will give her a chance to visit her parents. Written in verse, this book is touching and beautiful. It explores the meaning of family, friendship, and hope. Thanks to the publisher for an advance reader's copy. The book publishes in September.

Professional Read

7 Mighty Moves: Research-Backed, Classroom-Tested Strategies to Ensure K-to-3 Reading Success by Lindsay Kemeny

After having seen a few webinars presented by Lindsay Kemeny, a teacher with experience in the early elementary grades, I was excited for this new book she has written. It is a super practical book with many ideas for implementing research-based practices focused on seven areas of literacy instruction that will support students in building both their decoding and word recognition skills and comprehension of text. I will definitely recommend this to those who want to learn more about the research related to effective literacy practices and ways they can begin to implement those practices.


  1. I know about the new Bruce book but not any of the others, Lisa. Something like School sounds lovely, & That Flag feels very needed. Thanks!

  2. Looks like a great selection of books to start the school year with. Reggie’s the first graphic novel for early readers I’ve seen. I’ll have to add that to me TBR. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Can't wait to read See the Ghost. I really enjoy that series.

  4. Looks like some fun seasonal reading for you this week, Lisa! Are you a teacher? If so, I hope you have a good school year!

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