Monday, December 2, 2019

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...

The Cool Bean by Jory John

This is the third book from Jory John and Pete Oswald, the creators of the Bad Seed and the Good Egg. Students have loved both previous books and I think they will enjoy this one, as well. There are lots of puns and bean-related humor. A book with the message that small acts of kindness are cool is a nice addition to the series. 

Emergency Kittens! by Jody Jensen Shaffer

Mimi, Twee-Twee, and Adorbs are the cutest superheroes ever. They save the day with their irresistible fluffiness and purring. Cat lovers will be delighted with this book. Thanks to the publisher, Random House Kids, for a review copy. The book publishes in January.

Freedom Soup by Tami Charles

A young girl is helping her Ti Gran make Freedom Soup in preparation for a family celebration to ring in the New Year. While they cook, Ti Gran shares the story of the soup and the Haitian Revolution. This book provides insight into history while celebrating the joy of a grandchild and grandparent spending time together and the spirit of the Haitian culture.

Roly Poly by Mem Fox

Roly is the only child in his polar bear family and is not happy at all when a brother appears. Roly tries his best to ignore Monty until the day his little brother really needs him. This is a sweet story of rivalry and love between siblings. The artwork, which consists of photographs of bears made with wire and wool, is interesting, too. 

Normal: One Kid's Extraordinary Journey by Magdalena and Nathaniel Newman

Nathaniel was born with craniofacial deformities and difficulties hearing, breathing, and eating due to Treacher Collins Syndrome. Alternating between his perspective and that of his mother, this memoir tells how the disorder has impacted his life and family. Nathaniel's positive outlook and his belief that he is just as normal as any other kid is inspirational. Thanks to Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, I received an advance reader's copy of this book at the National Council of Teachers of English Annual Convention.

When You Trap a Tiger by Tae Keller

Realistic fiction, with a touch of magic, this is a suspenseful and tender story of family and finding one's voice. When Lily and her family move in with her halmoni, she starts seeing a magical tiger. There is a connection between the tiger and the Korean folktales that Lily's grandmother has told her and Lily believes the tiger can make her grandmother better. Lily learns about her grandmother and what it means to be brave. Thanks to Random House for providing my book review group, #BookExcursion, with an advance reader's copy of the book. The book publishes in January.


  1. I have to have Emergency Kittens! I have When You Trap a Tiger and Freedom Soup in my stack. Look forward to reading them now...

  2. I'm looking forward to Freedom Soup, Lisa & thanks for sharing Normal & When You Trap A Tiger. Both sound good. I have a Korean niece & nephew & they will love hearing about that last one.

  3. Emergency Kittens looks like the kind of book my preschooler will adore! I'm also interested in reading Normal. Have a great reading week!

  4. Awesome picture books this week! I ordered The Cool Bean, Emergency Kittens, Freedom Soup, and Roly Poly from my library. Thanks for sharing and have a great week!

  5. I'm delighted to know about The Cool Bean as I've loved the previous two in the series. And this is the first I've heard about Normal: One Kid's Extraordinary Journey -- sounds really good and important. Thanks for sharing, Lisa!

  6. You have so many books on your list today that I now want to read. I'm especially interested in When You Trap a Tiger by Tae Keller. I nearly wept when I discovered my library doesn't have a copy of Roly Poly. I adore Mem Fox.

  7. A number of really excellent looking books that I have yet to read. I have been really looking forward to The Cool Bean for a while, and Emergency Kittens also looks like a must have for my family. Thanks for the great post!

  8. Freedom Soup caught my eye! Looks like a fun and delightful book. Thanks so much for sharing so many great reads this week. :)

  9. I've got a lot of your books in my pile! I picked up Normal at ALA this summer and haven't gotten around to it. Hopefully soon! And I picked up Tae's new one at NCTE. The Cool Bean arrived last week but didn't get to it yet. Hoping to get some more reading time in next week!