Sunday, April 27, 2014

Monday, More from my Book Buddy

        Thanks to Jen at Teach.Mentor.Texts and Ricki and Kellee at Unleashing Readers for hosting our Monday Reading community. I discover so many wonderful books here.

         I’ve completed only a few picture books this week, and have nearly finished A Snicker of Magic by Natalie Lloyd and The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman (with a group).  Both good, both different, but have more commonalities than I originally thought. I highly recommend both.



Fossil – written and illustrated by Bill Thompson (also authoring Chalk)

           I should have read this a while ago, but never got to it. Thank goodness my book buddy brought it to me. A young boy, about middle school age, discovers a interesting rock on the beach, but stumbles and when the rock falls, it splits open, revealing “a fossil”. The boy looks up, and there is the fern-like plant, growing near the water. The adventure begins there, as the boy discovers more, and unfortunately “more” come to life. This is a wordless picture book that ignites the imagination. Seeing what is discovered, and then realizing it may appear is exciting. I’m sure a spread of ages will enjoy this.

And this too loaned by my friend: Old Bob’s Brown Bear - written and illustrated by Niki Daly
            I love circle stories, ones that begin with one premise, and circle round again after a detour. An old man says he’s never had a teddy bear to love, and is given one for his birthday. His granddaughter Emma can tell he really doesn’t know how to love a bear, and since she’s young, she nearly throws a tantrum so she can take the bear home. Each visit is the same until finally Emma gets to take the bear on a little vacation. The story shows the love that “can” be given if one only knows how. You’ll need to find the book to get the rest of the story.


Baba’s Gift – written by Beverley & Maya Naidoo and illustrated by Karin Littlewood

            This is a sweet story about a couple of kids who are so excited they get to go with their Gogo (I discovered it means grandmother or elderly woman) to the sea. In this culture, that means the Indian Ocean. The authors are from South Africa and are mother and daughter. Their Baba (father) has carved and created a sailboat for them to take along since he has to work and cannot go. The joy of playing in the sea is beautifully shown in the story, and the need for some prediction will occur as the children concentrate so much on their sand play that they don’t notice the tide is coming in. When readying to go home, they discover the boat has disappeared. There is a happy ending, also because of the sea. I enjoyed that children can learn how different children go on a day trip, and what foods they take on a picnic. It’s fun.

              Poetry
The Doubtful Guest - written and illustrated by Edward Gorey
            I don’t know how many of you like Edward Gorey, but my daughter and I loved reading his work when she was growing up. This book has the strange and wry sense of humor of Gorey. I’ve used it with my poetry students (older middle school) to show them another side to poetry, creating an imaginative, but interesting, story.  This is about a strange bird-like creature who arrives uninvited one day and does unexpected things. It’s rather hard to describe. I hope you’ll find the book and enjoy it.


Next: I still need to read Miss Emily by Burleigh Muten.  And I’m going to read some NetGalley books for a while. I’ve been ignoring them too long. Finally, I have The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin and hope to start it. It sounds good.

28 comments:

  1. I just posted on someone else's blog how I wanted to cancel certain obligations so I can finish reading The Storied Life. Hope you enjoy it.

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    1. I've had it for over a week now & can't wait any longer Earl. I think I will enjoy it. Now I'm even more excited!

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  2. Ooo... Fossil sounds delightful! I tend to avoid requesting much on NetGalley because if a book isn't in a "pile" I lose track of it.

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    1. I understand about NetGalley-finally had to sit and make a list! Yes, Fossil is gorgeous, so much without words!

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  3. Fossil is the only one on here I've read. Adding to my to read list now. Thanks!

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    1. You're welcome, Katherine. Hope you find a few that you enjoy.

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  4. Fossil is the one that caught my eye also. What an appealing book cover. I haven't been on Net Galley in a long time either. I would like to but reading online really strains my eye.

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    1. There's just a lot to read online and elsewhere. Hope you like Fossil!

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  5. I recently went to an event at a local with Philip and Erin Stead where they talked about their favorite obscure picture books. One of the books they picked was THE OBJECT LESSON by Edward Gorey and it was so strange. It made no sense whatsoever.

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    1. Gorey's book are rather obtuse, some do make a strange kind of sense, but others... I've read some that believe this is a metaphor for having a baby. Fun to hear your story, Beth.

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  6. Hope you're still enjoying Snicker! Can't wait to see your review! I think Fossil is great - lots of good conversation with that one!

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    1. Yes, I hated to put down Snicker yesterday, but needed to do the reading for the book group too. I'll probably race through it tonight and tomorrow!

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  7. I have Snicker to read, just haven't gotten to it yet. Baba's Gift really looks like my kind of book. I will be sure to look for it in the library. Thanks for sharing your books with us.

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    1. You're welcome, Alex. Hope you find Baba's gift and like it for your class. Snicker is good, but there are others out there to be read too. Hard to choose sometimes.

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  8. The Gorey book is now at the top of my list,Linda - I do love his work!

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    1. Oh, hope you find it, Tara. It's certainly interesting!

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  9. I must get Fossil for my classroom. Students love exploring and "telling" wordless books during buddy reading. I just ordered Snicker so that both my daughter and I can read it. Curious about what your comments will be.

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    1. Your students will love Fossil, I imagine. I'll let everyone know about Snicker-so far, it's fine. Reading The Graveyard Book with a group is possibly coloring my opinion. I'm trying not to let it!

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  10. I've always liked Gorey's work, but I haven't read this one--will need to put it on my TBR.
    Happy reading this week! :)

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    1. Thanks Kellee, hope you can find it and enjoy the quirkiness of Gorey all over again!

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  11. The Doubtful Guest looks simply delightful. I love books with wry humor. Thank you for sharing--I will add it to my list of books to search for in the library! Have a great week!

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    1. Hope you are able to find it, Ricki, and enjoy it. It's especially funny to compare that 'doubtful' guest to having a new baby, so apt for you and Kellee.

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  12. I have seen Fossil, but have not picked it up...now I will! Baba's Gift also looks like a book that I will want to find. Thanks, Linda!

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    1. Yes, I think you will enjoy them both, Melanie.Thanks!

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  13. I've read several very positive blog reviews of Gabrielle Zevin's new book--it's definitely on my list now. I love Bill Thomson's work but haven't seen Fossil yet. Many of my students in Children's Lit don't see the purpose or interest of wordless picture books, so I know next semester when I teach the course, I need to do a better job presenting them. Graveyard Book is on the syllabus for Children's Lit this semester--several students have said it is their favorite book this semester.

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    1. There is so much to do with wordless books. A colleague collects them, & last year each student in a class took one, and wrote words for the story. It was a wonderful project for teaching the writing process. These were 3rd and 4th graders. I am loving The Graveyard Book-so much there to love, and to teach from. Thanks, Elisabeth!

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  14. Hi there Linda, as you know I am a huge Gorey fan so The Doubtful Guest is a familiar title, one that I enjoy. The picturebook titles you have here seem like great additions to my multicultural children's lit text-set, I shall be on the lookout for them. Fossil looks wonderful, I loved CHALK, so I should definitely try to find this one. Thanks for sharing all these, dearest Linda!

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    1. I love hearing that you love Gorey, too, Myra. I do now remember that you reviewed a few of his. Hope you especially love Baba's Gift-it was special!

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Having a conversation is a good thing!