Sunday, March 11, 2018

It's Monday - Book Sharing

             Thanks to Ricki and Kellee at Unleashing Readers and Jen at Teach Mentor Texts for hosting this meme. Your TBR lists will grow longer, but you will find books to love and to share. 

               Here are a few books I read and enjoyed this week!


I had to do some research as I read this book because the story is based on Indian folktales, and that is a good thing! There also is a terrific afterward by the author that explains quite a bit. Kids reading this will learn about another culture's stories and find more scary adventures that include escapes from other kinds of monsters. Ugh, and these monsters have sticky, sticky snot! The heroine, Kiranmala, has a big surprise on her twelfth birthday and it isn't cake and ice cream. Her parents mysteriously disappear, two young (and handsome) princes show up to help save her from that other 'thing' that shows up, ready to eat her, a rakkhosh. These rakkhosh are not the only ones to worry about when Kiranmala beats off this one (with the help of a prince). There are snakes, a demon island, and the one she never thought she wanted to see, The Serpent Prince.  Kiranmala learns that she is a real Indian princess, something she has resisted learning from her parents. She is smart and sassy, and no matter how alarmed, she acts to save herself, and others too. It's a story that's number one in the series, has a satisfying end, just makes you want that next book now!

          Thanks to Candlewick for the next two books, fun for younger readers. 
        It would be difficult not to love a story by Eve Bunting, and Will Hillenbrand adds to this story of a poor duck who can't swim with a lovely watercolored natural setting. In verse, we hear of this duck who laments: "I cannot swim, and that is bad./A landlocked duck is very sad." To me, the best thing shown is that he seeks advice from a frog and a wise owl. It helps! He decides to find a puddle: "I'll find a puddle. It will be . . ./the perfect practice place for me." A happy ending after he gains some courage will make a good topic for conversation. How does one find courage, and how to feel confident with that advice? When is it okay to wait a while to try a scary thing? Young children will like the story and applaud for this young duck!



         Now, I have read my first “Stink” book, this time Stink: Hamlet and Cheese. Stink is going to need to stay home with older sister Judy, so enticed by sword play and magic spells from witches, he signs up instead for Shakespeare Camp with his friend Sophie of the Elves. There are lots of fun things during these days like learning the best ways to hurl insults via Shakespeare: “Thou art more loathsome than a toad.” or “Fie on thee.” and sword-fighting with pool noodles, a beginning way to learn. Unfortunately, Stink also has to contend with Riley Rottenberger (great name) who just want to kiss him (or so he thinks). It turns out to be a fun week with some silliness and seriousness, a big surprise for Stink, too. The only thing I missed with the ARC was that Peter H. Reynolds' wonderful illustrations were not included this time. I’m sure they make the story even better.
             Kids at storytime finally get the story they want from the new liBEARian, a scary story! What turns out to be an “escape” tale is clever and imaginative, filled with people and animals quite recognizable with Alex Willmore’s wonderful illustrations. The kids rule the library show this time and it’s loads of fun to hear about it!
          This book tells the tale of Rodney, a boy who loves to be outside, is most of the time thinking of the pill bug he sees crawling across a windowsill, or the birds flying outside the classroom window, not thinking of what the teacher is saying. The book is published by an organization started by the author, Carmen Bogan, a multi-cultural children’s book publisher. This time, it’s partnering with Yosemite Conservancy. Rodney thinks the class is going to a small corner park, with not much more than a patch of yellow grass and some trash cans. He is surprised that the bus goes right by that park and on and on. They’re going to a marvelous outdoor park (must be Yosemite!). Floyd Cooper’s illustrations show the beauty of this park and Rodney’s joy, where he “was bigger” (examining an ant hill), “was smaller” (looking up at a very old and tall tree), “was louder” (shouting into the mountains), and “was quieter” (looking at a bird nest with three eggs). There is an author’s note with advice about going to a big park, probably a state or national park, and having a wonderful time, just like Rodney! Nature is a powerful thing for all people, maybe especially children.
       Except for the first chapter book, I seem to have read many of these books that are perfect fits for younger readers. This is a second rhyming story, from morning to night, this little girl, her dad, and her dog and cat spend the day starting four floors up. They go down four floors, out into the city and to the park, returning quickly because it starts to rain. Each page of rhymes highlights color words, as in "Hello, green park, bright blue sky, swing, swing, swinging way up high!" It ends with counting "pink cloud sheep". Carolyn Stutson passed away in 2015. You may remember her wonderful Blue Corn Soup? If not, get it. It's wonderful, too. 
A New Poetry Book Just Right for The Classroom!


        Ellen Shi’s illustrations make the poets’ voices shine with happiness in this poetry collection by Lee Bennett Hopkins. The school, in Rebecca Kai Dotlich’s voice, says “I am waiting--come on in!” and the other adults who also wait are inside, welcoming, giving an experience for children that makes good memories. Starting with Matt Forrest Esenwine’s friendly bus driver with a “good morning smile” to the teacher who, in Joan Bransfield Graham’s sweet words, “spark imagination--so the students “feel I, too, can fly” it’s a happy celebration of school. Other words to celebrate: “The Lunch Lady” who “says: “Here you go, Honey. . .handing each of us a full plate.” by Robyn Hood Black, “Art Teacher” who helps kids explore and “In her room/I am an artist.”, where Irene Latham writes about a “Music Teacher”: “She walks in music, like morning rain”, Renee La Tulippe shows off the “Theater Teacher” with “With him we are anything/we want to be”, and Amy Ludwig Vanderwater shows the kindness from a “Nurse”: “heals our hurts/big and small.” Children count on the friends who are already grown to keep the days delightful places to learn.

What's Next: Still reading another arc from Candlewick, a verse novel about the beginnings of the Revolutionary War, Siege, by Roxane Orgill And I hope to read a book from my #MustReadIn2018 list, also starting The Lilac Girls!

26 comments:

  1. The Serpent's Secret is amazing! Loved the blend of humor and adventure. The poetry book sounds great. I have yet to read a Stink book! Have a great week!

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    1. Glad to hear you enjoyed The Serpent's Secret, too, Lisa. I hope kids will love it, too! Thanks! Hope you have a great week, too!

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  2. These books all have great messages. I loved that Stink presented Shakespeare in a fun, organic way, and Where's Rodney encouraged appreciation of parks. And any collection curated by Lee Bennett Hopkins is worth the read! Thanks, Linda!

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    1. You're welcome. Enjoy each one you find, Susan.

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  3. Everytime I read about The Serpent's Secret, I want to read it more. I am a Duck looks so charming. I wonder if my little ones are ready for it yet. Where's Rodney takes me back to all those lovely books about children living in the outdoors, and all those readers who loved them. It makes me want to reread some of them like Owls in the Family and another title that I can't remember the name of. (This is driving me crazy)

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    1. I wonder if you mean another Farley Mowat book? I did love each one of his books! I Am A Duck is probably a little old for your grandchildren, but soon! Enjoy The Serpent's Secret when you can! Thanks, Cheriee!

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  4. I always go straight from your post to the library web site. This week I'm requesting School People, The New LiBEARian, and Where's Rodney?

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    1. I think we each add to our lists, Ramona. Enjoy!

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  5. These look like some great books, this week! I am very much looking forward to The Serpent's Secret as I keep seeing great reviews popping up on everyone's #imwayr posts. My TBR library pile now has me scheduled almost into May, so I'm going to have to wait a few more weeks. Stink sounds super cute -- I bet my preteen kiddo will love that one.

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    1. Yes, the Stink book will be good for pre-teens. Enjoy The Serpent's Secret when you can! Thanks!

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  6. I've got School People to read in my stack this week! Hoping to share some poetry books this Friday.
    I loved Serpent's Secret. I've already had 2 boys read it and they loved it. So witty :)

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    1. I'm happy to hear about the students reading The Serpent's Secret. I imagine they loved Kiran's voice in the story, too. Thanks Michele. Enjoy School People!

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  7. Each of these books are new to me, so I’m looking forward to hunting them down and reading them! Have an awesome week!

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  8. I love the cover for The Serpent's Secret. I'm a big, big fan of mythology - especially Greek (loved the Percy Jackson series).

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    1. This is a whole new look at mythology from India, Stefanie. I enjoyed it very much.

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  9. I was so lucky to meet the author of Serpent's Secret at NCTE, and she read the first chapter--I can't wait to read it!

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    1. Oh wow, how wonderful that you got to meet her, Kellee. I hope you enjoy this book as much as I did! Happy Reading to you, too!

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  10. The Serpent's Secret has been selling well at our store. I may not need to read it if that's the case.

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    1. Because you don't need to "sell" it? Hmm!

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  11. LiBEARian. Gosh. Why can't I be this clever? I love this idea!

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    1. It's a cute story, Ricki, just right for the younger ones!

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  12. Love the look of this book of school poetry!

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  13. School People sounds very much like our Poetry Friday community! Well done! Awesome! :)

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  14. Thanks, Carrie & Myra. School People is one that will be great to share with students, perhaps have them write their own poems about the people in their school worlds!

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