Sunday, June 12, 2016

Monday Reading

Back from the beach!  I had a great time, and have read some, not as many as I thought I would. There's too much fun going on being with family.
              Every Monday, it's a pleasure to link up with a group that reviews books they want to share with others. If you visit, you'll be sure to find a book or more that you know you'll want to read! 

          Visit Jen at Teach MentorTexts and Kellee and Ricki at UnleashingReaders to see what they've been reading, along with everyone else who link up.   
Tweet #IMWAYR


        How can I describe this book and still allow you readers to enjoy every page as a wonderful surprise, often leaving one holding one's breath, often reading with tears of both joy and sadness? It touched me, and feels so right and good for so many considering the tragic event in Orlando.  
          "Times are simpler when no one hates you because of your name and it doesn't occur to you to be ashamed of it." And they are not simple for these three teens, living their senior year in high school together. Growing into who they want to be instead of who they've been in their lives is what it's all about. You will love Dill, Lydia and Travis, and celebrate the story told by Jeff Zentner. The beautiful writing supports new ideas, and will help students who need them. I hope so. "Nothing makes you feel more naked than someone identifying a desire you never knew you possessed." 

         A boy and a girl go hunting, for all things wild. In spare poetic text, Megan Lloyd takes them on a journey to find wild things that can be seen, smelled, felt in many kinds of places. Sometimes one needs to look for the tiniest things, and sometimes “wild” is right there, bigger than you.  Sometimes, according to the text “Wild creeps and crawls and slithers.” and those children appear to only give a glance, and walk quietly by. The illustrations illuminate the text with added beauty for readers.


This is an awesome graphic novel showing Masha, a young girl who needs an adventure, and applies to be the fearsome Baba Yaga’s assistant. With family issues, Masha takes on even more challenges for Baba Yaga, whose background story is included in this tale, too. The graphics by Emily Carroll show well the characters’ feelings and fearsome magic in this newly-combined story  by Marika McCoola.
             I’ve taken my own children and grandchildren on long trips, and also my students. The common words are always “Are we there yet?” In fun comic-like illustrations, Santat shows the crazy experiences of a long trip, especially when one has a great imagination.  Through desperation, time slows down so much that the book goes backwards, and in to strange places, like the time of princesses and pirates. It will be THE book to take along on your next road trip.
           It’s always interesting to hear anyone, children included, talk about their names, and young Thunder Boy Jr. is no different. He wants a different name, not the same one his father carries. I have had students interview their parents to find the stories of how they got their names, and they have had terrific stories through the years.  For those of us who don’t know individual  tribes’ naming traditions, I saw this as a story that happens among all kinds of children and enjoyed it a lot. But there has been some controversy shared that the naming ideas don’t follow true Native American naming rites. See this post for more explanation by Debbie Reese.

            Beautiful sponge-paint illustrations show a young boy adventuring with a colony of penguins, a  constellation of stars, and other newly-created groups  like “a smack of jellyfish”. The language play is as fun to read as the illustrations are to see. This will make a marvelous read aloud for talking about play, and for writing about it, too.

Just Starting: I've never read The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce, and it's always been on my list. I found a copy at the bookstore where I volunteer, and so here I go!

22 comments:

  1. Sounds like a great reading week, especially with the beach!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I didn't realize Baba Yaga's Assistant is a graphic novel. I'll have to check it out since graphic novels are such a hit with my students. Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a great book, maybe for fourth grade and up, Lisa. Thanks.

      Delete
  3. All gorgeous books, Linda! What a productive reading week. I really am intrigued by Baba Yaga's assistant. Are We There Yet is quite elusive for me - still not available here in Munich nor in Singapore. Hopefully by the time I go back home, it's there! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Both books are creatively different, Myra. You'll enjoy them. Thanks. I hope you are loving your month away!

      Delete
  4. I love the cover of Finding Wild! I am going to have to find a copy of Baba Yaga's Assistant! Every year I teach the students who come to from our annex until we get organization settled. I've always given them homework to find out as much as they can about their names. Then the next day, we share with each other what we have learned. Even though they all know each other, they learn something new, and I learn almost enough about them to remember their names.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Love what you do with names, Cheriee. Have them also interview their parents. It's fun to hear what they discover from that angle, too. Enjoy Finding Wild and this new Baba Yaga story.

      Delete
  5. Linda! Thanks for sharing The Serpent King with us. I'm always looking for a good YA book to read. There are several picture books here that I am interested in as well. Happy Reading!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're welcome, Kendra. I discovered The Serpent King from another blog friend, and it is a beautiful story.

      Delete
  6. So glad you had a terrific time. There's always time to read, but I'm glad you took time to relax and enjoy your family time. I have The Serpent King on my kindle, but for some reason have never gotten around to reading it. Lately I've been hearing some great things about it, so I need to get to it! Have a great week!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Do get to The Serpent King Jana. It's awesome! Thanks, hope your week is a good one, too!

      Delete
  7. Ah, so jealous, I'm dreaming of beach weather....I loved Are We There Yet?, Dan Santat's illustrations are just the best!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, the beach was heavenly, Jane. I hope you can have some time there soon. I agree about Santat's illustrations, and also so many others. Thanks!

      Delete
  8. I preordered The Serpent King but have yet to get to it. A lot of people are reading it right now so I pulled it out. Hope to get to it this summer.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope you enjoy it, Michele! After Mondays, I always have more on my lists!

      Delete
  9. Such beautiful books Linda - We can't wait to read Finding Wild. The illustrations looks amazing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a lovely book, and I was glad to find it at the library!

      Delete
  10. The Serpent King has been on my list! I am glad it touched you. I will need to find a copy of it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Enjoy it when you can, Ricki. Thanks!

      Delete
  11. Baba Yaga is such a fun graphic novel! I loved the different POV.
    I need to read Thunder Boy, Jr! I love Sherman and I know people I really respect love it.
    Finding Wild looks beautiful also; I look forward to reading it!

    Happy reading this week :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Kellee, have a great week, too.

      Delete

Having a conversation is a good thing!