Monday, September 14, 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...

Our Subway Baby by Peter Mercurio and illustrated by Leo Espinosa

This book could not be any sweeter. It's the true story of how a family was brought together because of a subway and love. Very poignant. Thanks to the publisher for a review copy.

The Invisible Alphabet by Joshua David Stein and illustrated by Ron Barrett

The words connected to each letter, in this very interesting alphabet book, are all things that are invisible to the eye. The illustrations depicting each invisible thing are clever and often amusing. Thanks to Penguin for providing my book review group, #BookExcursion, with a review copy.

Before the Ever After by Jacqueline Woodson

ZJ is trying to understand the changes that are happening in his life - not only has his father stopped playing professional football, but he is also forgetting things and experiencing mood swings and terrible headaches. This is a heart-breaking book about the impact of brain trauma and how a family copes with the devastating effects of this. Told in verse, it's a beautifully written story.

Twins by Varian Johnson and illustrated by Shannon Wright

Sisters, Maureen and Francine, are navigating the challenges of sixth grade and growing up as identical twins. School and home life becomes even more complicated when they both decide to run for class president. Students who enjoy graphic novels that explore friendship and the ups and downs of being a kid will want to read this one. The book publishes in October, but it's currently available through Scholastic Book Clubs. 

A Grown-Up Reading Recommendation

Good Morning, Monster: A Therapist Shares Five Heroic Stories of Emotional Recovery by Catherine Gildiner

A psychologist shares the stories of five of her patients, all facing challenges due to previous trauma in their lives. The stories are heart-wrenching, but also compelling as they show the resiliency of the human spirit. There is also insight into the therapeutic process and the ways in which healing can happen. Hard to read, at times, but moving. Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley, I read an advanced digital copy of the book. The book publishes in the U.S. next week. 


  1. Except for Good Morning, Monster, I have the others on my list, just haven't got them to read yet, Lisa. Your reviews make them very enticing! Thank you!

  2. Twins is in my pile, looking forward to reading it.
    I read Before the Ever After on my blogging break, so well written. And People magazine had an article in this past issue about CTE.
    I thought The Invisible Alphabet was so clever! I'm featuring it in this Thursday's post.

  3. I loved Our Subway Baby. Such a moving story knowing it was based on a true story.

  4. Nice list here! I’m adding to my TBR. Subway Baby looks intriguing. Oh, well, they ALL look good! Thanks for sharing!

  5. I completely agree on what you shared about Before the Ever After. Wow was that moving! And I'm adding The Invisible Alphabet to my list right now -- first I've heard of it! Thanks for the share, Lisa!

  6. I just read about Before the Ever After on Shaye Miller's blog, and it sounds gorgeous—I'll have to read it! Our Subway Baby sounds wonderful as well! Thanks for the great post!

  7. I can't wait to get a copy of The Invisible Alphabet to add to my collection of alphabet books! There has been lots about Before the Ever After today and I am green with envy for everyone who has managed to read it. Twins has been added to my list. Thanks for sharing this week.

  8. Woodson writes great verse books -- and I'm someone is is leery of teh genre. Thanks for all the reviews.