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Monday, June 27, 2022

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...


Bug on a Rug by Sophia Gholz and illustrated by Susan Batori

This is a really fun rhyming book about a bug, a pug, and a slug with a message about friendship and getting along. There is some clever word play that adds to the fun. It will make an entertaining read aloud.

Honeybee Rescue: A Backyard Drama by Loree Griffin Burns and photographs by Ellen Harasimowicz

This nonfiction picture book will make a great addition to a collection of books about bees. It's a fascinating and informative story about how a swarm of honeybees was moved to a safer location. In addition to the story of the rescue, the author has interspersed additional facts related to bee removal. The backmatter of the book which includes an interview with the bee rescuer, a glossary, and an author's note give further insight. 

Mommy's Hometown by Hope Lin and illustrated by Jaime Kim

A boy has heard all about his mother's hometown in Korea, but when they go to visit the village has been replaced by a city. In spite of the differences, the boy and his mom make connections between the past and the present. This is a sweet story about home, family, and creating memories.  

Miss Quinces by Kat Fajardo

Sue wants to join her friends at her a sleepover camp at the end of the summer, but her mother will not allow her to go. While on a month-long trip to visit family in Honduras, Sue's mother plans a surprise quincea├▒era for her, in spite of the fact that Sue has already made it clear that she doesn't want one. This is a sweet story about a teenager struggling to fit in and manage the expectations of those around her. The relationship between Sue and her abuelita is endearing. Readers of graphic novels about growing up will enjoy this one. Thanks to the publisher for a review copy.

Monday, June 20, 2022

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 Queen of Kindergarten by Derrick Barnes and illustrated by Vanessa Brantley-Newton

MJ's mom gives her a tiara for her first day of kindergarten and tells her what she needs to do to be Queen of Kindergarten. With confidence and joy, MJ fulfills her role as queen and has a perfect first day. This is a lovely follow-up to The King of Kindergarten.

The Juneteenth Story: Celebrating the End of Slavery in the United States by Alliah L. Agostini and illustrated by Sawyer Cloud

An informative picture book about the history of Juneteenth. It's on the longer side for a picture book, but the author has done a great job providing details about the holiday.

Valentina Salazar is Not a Monster by Zoraida C├│rdova

This is a fun and action-packed fantasy about magical creatures and family. Valentina is missing her old life before her father died when her family used to be monster protectors. When she convinces her siblings to help her find the egg of a mythical creature what starts off as the worst summer becomes the greatest. Thanks to the publisher for providing my book review group, #BookExucursion, with a review copy. The book publishes this month. 

Adult Reading Recommendation


The Nurse's Secret by Amanda Skenandore

This is historical fiction with a mystery and a bit of romance. It's set in the 1880's in New York and is based on the story of the first nursing school in the United States.

Monday, June 13, 2022

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...


A Day for Sandcastles by JonArno Lawson and illustrated by Qin Leng

Three siblings spend the day at the beach making a sandcastle. They show perseverance and resilience each time their sandcastle gets demolished and they set out to rebuild. The illustrations in this wordless picture book are detailed and capture the delight of a beach day. 

Luli and the Language of Tea by Andrea Wang and illustrated by Hyewon Yum

Luli and the others in her class don't speak English and all play by themselves. When Luli brings tea to class one day, the children find a common connection in spite of their language differences. This is an incredibly sweet story. The author has included information about tea drinking in each of the countries represented in the book. 

Piglet Comes Home by Melissa Shapiro and illustrated by Ellie Snowdon

Based on a true story, a tiny, pink dog who is both deaf and blind finds a forever home. The six other dogs who live with Piglet help him feel warm and safe and he helps them when they find themselves in a scary situation. More information about the real-life Piglet and how his story helps to encourage kindness, empathy, and resilience can be found at the Piglet Mindset website.

The World Belonged to Us by Jacqueline Woodson and illustrated by Leo Espinosa

On a city block in Brooklyn, kids spend the summer having fun, enjoying their freedom, and believing anything is possible. Although I grew up in a small town rather than a city, this book reminded me of my childhood when my siblings and neighborhood friends pretty much spent the entire summer outside. This book is full of summer joy.

Monday, June 6, 2022

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...


Kesar and the Lullaby Birds by Aditi Oza and illustrated by Debasmita Dasgupta

Kesar's sister will not fall asleep at night in spite of her family's efforts to get her to do so. When Kesar's ba visits, she shares a story that gives Kesar an idea to help her sister sleep. Set in the Rann of Kutch, this book gives insight into Indian culture. The author's note at the end provides more information about the setting and the folk art and craft that inspired the story. This is a sweet story about sisters with beautiful illustrations. Thanks to the publisher, Yali Books, for providing my book review group, #BookExcursion, with a review copy.

Poopsie by Hannah E. Harrison

Poopsie is an indoor cat who spends her time sleeping, eating, and looking fluffy until the narrator of the book urges her to go outside and have an adventure. The narrator guides Poopsie out of her yard and right into a jungle filled with danger including crocodiles, snakes, and tigers. Even in the face of fear, Poopsie shows the narrator how daring and adventurous she really is. This is a clever and humorous story.

The Do-Over by Jennifer Torres

Twins, Raquel and Lucinda, live with their mother, but when the pandemic begins they all go to stay with their father. Even though their father has a new girlfriend who is also living with him, the sisters want their parents to have a do-over and get back together. This is a heartwarming story about sisters and blended families. Thanks to the publisher for providing my book review group with an advanced reader's copy. 

Adult Reading Recommendation


The Lies I Tell by Julie Clark

Similar to the author's previous book, The Last Flight, this is one I couldn't put down. The book alternates between the perspective of two women, one a con artist, and both having been betrayed by others. It's a story of lies, deceit, and revenge that kept me wanting to know how everything tied together. An interesting tidbit about the author is that she is a fifth grade teacher (in this interview with Maria Shriver, she talks about the challenges of being a teacher right now). I am amazed that she can find the time and energy to teach and write novels!