Sunday, May 19, 2013

Special Week of Reading

It's Monday! What are you Reading? is hosted by Jen and Kellee at TEACH.MENTOR.TEXTSHead over to find plenty to choose from!  And, also visit Sheila at BOOK JOURNEYS that offers more reviews of all kinds of books, adult and children.  Your lists will increase with these good reviews!

Don’t forget to tweet at #IMWAYR

I won’t be able to respond today as I’m off with a class on their overnight trip camping in the Carbondale, Colorado area.  We’ll be at Sustainable Settings, a terrific farm to learn about sustainable farming, living well and responsibly on the earth!  If you click on the link, you'll see Mt. Sopris, my view as I peek out of my tent each morning!

Last Thursday I reviewed Song of the Water Boatman: & Other Pond Poems by Joyce Sidman and illustrated by Beckie Prange

My good friend again found a couple of books for me, both good, both fun enough to look for!

Bear Despair – written and illustrated by Gaetan Doremus, originally published in France, translated last year for the U.S.  It is part of a Story Without Words series by Enchanted Lion Books.

       This wordless picture book tells a funny tale, just not funny for the bear, whose teddy bear was first stolen by a wolf, and on we go following along as the bear tries his best to retrieve his dear teddy.  What happens in the book is predictable, which is one good reason for finding this book-studying it for what writers do to tell a good story.  It’s great!

Have You Seen My New Blue Socks? – written by Eve Bunting, illustrated by Sergio Ruzzler
                  This book will delight the younger readers and demands to be read aloud.  It reads like “Fox In Socks” and “Green Eggs and Ham” and there is a fun surprise at the end!  The illustrations are simple watercolor and help to tell the story in the expressions of the animals.  It’s quite a fun book, just like the others!

Another book I discovered in a book collection purchased by my school is a poetry anthology.  Animal Poems for Children was put together by DeWitt Conyers and illustrated by Ann Schweninger.  It is part of the Golden book collection.
        There are some treasures in this collection that are terrific.  There are 22 poems, including “Mrs. Peck-Pigeon” by Eleanor Farjeon, “Small” by Langston Hughes (about a snail) and “The Turtle” by Jack Prelutsky.  And there are a few familiar ones that are anonymous, plus that Old English Song, “What Will Robin Do?”  “The north wind doth blow,/And we shall have snow,/And what will the robin do then,/Poor thing?”  The illustrations are soft, seeming to be watercolor and will be appealing to young children.

An Undone Fairy Tale – by Ian Lendler, illustrated by Whitney Martin
             Certainly this is something like Rumpelstiltskin, but it’s more than that because in the first pages one learns that a poor princess is kept locked up because she makes great pies, and her father is greedy.  Seemingly every attempt at rescue by a hero is thwarted, but finally some relief arrives for the poor girl.  The book also surprises if you read too, too fast!  I can’t tell more because it would spoil the surprises.  You must find and read, then share.  It’s that fun, funny and surprising!

Bluebird – created by Bob Staake
             I’ve read so many good reviews about this, and I guess many of you have too.  It’s hard to get through this book without tears, and the end is a bit of a surprise.  I hope you’ll love this sweet story of a lonely boy and a bluebird of happiness that brings smiles to the boy’s face.  There is more, but I don’t want to spoil it.  It’s a story to know.

Snow Rabbit, Spring Rabbit A Book of Changing Seasons– written and illustrated by Il Sung Na
            This is the usual story of what animals do when autumn arrives, getting ready for winter, and then what happens for the arrival of spring.  There are few words, but the illustrations stop you, wanting to savor each detail of Na’s gorgeous collages.  I don’t know which page is better, the turtles swimming to warmer water or the squirrels gathering food for winter.  The rabbit “main” character visits the pages as if it’s watching what each animal does to prepare.  And this same beautiful rabbit at the end caps the story, definitely ready for spring. 

NEXT:  I’m nearly finished with The Pull of Gravity by Gae Polisner.  I just had too much to do to finish it, but it is the best story, so real about young teens.  I cannot wait to share with our middle school students!
     On my trip:  I value this book very much, and hope you all can get a copy.  It is full of wonderful readings about taking care of our Earth.  Earth Speaks : A Powerful Tribute To Our Home In Space - 83 edition
     And, I always take a journaling book along by Dan Price.  This time it will be How To Make A Journal of Your Life.  If you don’t know these books, you should check them out-great ideas for journaling and sketching!


  1. I started a comment and then got side-tracked by looking at journals! Your field trip sounds wonderful.

  2. Hope you have a wonderful trip this week. Can't wait to hear about it. Thanks, as always, for these book reviews. I'm considering taking the challenge to read a book a day this summer. I have a stack already waiting.

    1. Yes, those stacks grow, & grow, don't they? I think I have some different plans that mean I can't do book-a-day, although with the picture books included, I guess I could manage. I'm thinking about it too! Thanks, Margaret!

  3. Lovely selections, Linda. Ans what a fabulous field trip to be on - the photographs were stunning. I will have to hunt for the journaling book - I need to up my game in that regard, with summer around the corner.

  4. Enjoy finishing The Pull of Gravity, I loved it! :)

  5. Thank you for all the titles. Bluebird is one I must read because I've heard so many good things about it. I am not familiar with the Price journaling books, but it sounds like something right up my alley, so I'll be heading over to Amazon to check them out. (And here I've gone 3 days without ordering anything. I think I might cave in).

  6. Bluebird is going on my NTB (need to buy) list. I also love putting wordless books into the hands of our kindergarten teachers. Thank you, Linda. As always, you give me books to look forward to!

  7. Enjoy this trip! And the great outdoors! I loved sharing Bear Despair with my students. They thought it was absolutely hilarious. And many took it off to "read" and share again in small groups.

  8. Your field trip sounds amazing! Hope you guys have a great time learning!

  9. Hi there dearest Linda. I hope you had fun during your field trip! You need all your energy being with such young kids filled with life! Must be really exciting (and tiring too). I read (and reviewed) Song of the Water Boatmen when we had our Poetry special sometime in 2011 I think. What an absolutely beautiful book. I am not very familiar with the other picture books you have here, so I would be sure to check them out. :) The journaling book sounds awesome.

  10. Thanks for all the comments everyone! I am back, had a marvelous trip-farming and swimming in a hot spring pool & zip lining! Now the nice weekend, then back to work!


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