Monday, January 6, 2020

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...

In a Jar by Deborah Marcero

Llewellyn collects things in jars and when he meets Evelyn they collect moments and wonders of the world together. When Evelyn moves away, they find a way to continue to share their experiences with each other and remain friends even from afar. This is a gorgeous celebration of the magic of friendship that offers a reminder to cherish the beauty and wonder that exists all around us. The illustrations are interesting and lovely. I especially loved the two-page spread of the jar-filled walls of Llewellyn's house which I think will intrigue kids and ignite their imaginations. 

The Paper Kingdom by Helena Ku Rhee

Daniel's babysitter cancels and his parents, who work as night janitors, take him to work with them. Sleepy Daniel would rather be at home, so his parents entertain him by making believe the office they are cleaning is a Paper Kingdom with a king, queen, and dragons. This is a heartwarming story about family inspired by the author's own experiences going to work with her parents. Thanks to Random House for providing my book review group, #BookExcursion, with a review copy. The book publishes in February.

The Deep & Dark Blue by Niki Smith

Twins, Hawke and Grayson, flee to find safety when their lives are threatened after a cousin seizes power of their noble house. Disguised as Hannah and Grayce, they find refuge as part of the Communion of Blue, an order of woman who spin the threads of the world. Grayce begins to realize that she is most comfortable living as a girl. While her desire to remain a part of the Communion of Blue is strong, Hawke also needs her to help regain control of their family's home. There is magic and action in this graphic novel, as well as an important story line about identity and being true to yourself.

The Wonder of Wildflowers by Anna Staniszewski

Mira has moved, with her family, from Poland to a country where everyone uses magic. Mira struggles to fit in, as her family is not permitted to use magic the same way as those who have already been living there. Although based in fantasy, this book explores important and relevant topics such as immigration and fitting in. It's a story of community, friendship, and identity. Thanks to the author for sending my book review group, #BookExcursion, an advance reader's copy. The book publishes in February.


  1. Oh, Lisa, each one of these is a new title to me & each one sounds great. In A Jar sounds so interesting! Thanks for sharing & Happy New Year!

  2. I keep hearing good things about In a Jar. I hope to read it soon, I put it on hold at the library so hopefully I'll get it as soon as it publishes!

  3. I've added In a Jar to my want to read list. Hopefully my library will bring it in. The Wonder of Wildflowers sounds like an important read.

  4. Wonder of Wildflowers sounds really interesting -- those all look like good reads.

  5. Ah ha! In a Jar is completely new to me. I'm adding this one to my list. Thanks for sharing, Lisa!

  6. The Wonder of Wildflowers is on my #mustreadin2020 list so looking forward to reading.