Monday, August 9, 2021

Monday Reading - Lots of Great Reading

 Visit Kellee and Ricki at UnleashingReaders and 

Jen at Teach Mentor Texts to see what they and others have been reading! Your TBR lists will grow! Happy Reading! 
      The #PB10for10 is tomorrow, hosted by Cathy Mere & Mandy Robek! Try to make it if you can! Go to this post from Cathy for all the info!

           I'm happy to write that Katherine Applegate's stories are always terrific and I loved this new one. It was a gift to have the advanced copy from Net Galley! 
           Dear Willowdeen, about to turn eleven, has had tragedy in her life; wildfires took her home, parents, and brother. Luckily she was taken in and nursed back to health by two women in the small town where they live, Perchance. She is a lover of nature and wanders the woods, especially the blue willow trees, for glimpses of the most unlovable creatures there, the screechers. Loud with note-worthy scents, they have had bounties put on them, something Willowdeen hates and eventually fights. A surprise meeting with a young boy named Connor who creates a gift for Willowdeen's birthday becomes the magic she uses to figure out why no Hummingbears have returned to Perchance. Those special creatures are an annual fair's tourist draw for people's livelihood for the rest of the year. The town's fires and drought, the possibility of no fair creates a problem for all to solve, yet this "youngster's" voice, so little heard before, speaks up to help. She struggles to find answers, something to admire for that quest. Learning about friendship and love also adds to Willowdeen's journey in poignant scenes. For those who love the earth and need to continue learning about it in order to better keep it safe, this is a book that will inspire all to pay attention. 

         Ah, the expressions delight, and there's little more challenging (or humorous) than working on a new (and forced) relationship! In few words, like "Cat Dog" then Cat Dog Dog" and other surprises, Nelly Buchet and Andrea Zuill offer a story of a blended family. You'll see some expected scenes and enjoy some big surprises! 

        Inspired from her story on This American Life, a debut picture book by Lydia M. Sigwarth tells of a librarian who helped make what seemed like a home for her during a challenging period in her life when her family lived in various family members' homes as they were homeless themselves. Romina Galotta's illustrations show the reality of being crowded in a basement or not being able to touch anything because it was NOT your own home, along with the pure joy of spreading out at the library and learning about more stories. Sigwarth is now a librarian and re-united with her special librarian, writing this book to her! I remember the bookmobile librarian coming often to the small town where I grew up and bringing books just for me, ones she thought I would love. It's a special memory as this book shows another.

              James Yang's mixed-media illustrations and story imagine what it might be like in Isamu Noguchi's life. In his author's note, Yang writes that "Isamu was a famous Japanese American artist who made sculptures of paper, wood, and stone, as well as creating landscape design." In this story, we follow Isamu through the noisy market with his mother, then on to various places in nature while he questions and imagines. For example, as the cover shows, Isamu listens to the stone to ask "What is it saying?" I imagine the fun it would be to take this book and read it aloud in nature somewhere. What would children connect to? What might they imagine and ask?

        Kathryn Erskine's few small poems with Alexandra Boiger's gorgeous illustrations of children, "All of Us" shows that together, apart, me or you, again "all of us" live here: "Some build things up,/some create art./Some help the earth,/some heal the heart." You must see and read it to love it! It's a special book!

What's next? It's time to read a book (or two) from my #MustReadin2021 list! An update time is coming at the end of the month with Cheriee!


  1. I have a digital copy of Willodeen from NetGalley, too, and I have to get to reading it. I also need to work on my #PB10for10 post today, too!

  2. I also have Willodeen - so much to read!!! I just ordered All of Us - I missed that one. Thank you and see you tomorrow for #PB10for10

  3. These sound so good! When my kids were young, I loved reading biography picture books with them, especially if they were about artists or inventors. A Boy Named Isamo sounds like one I'd love and how fitting that it's about a Japanese artist with the games just finishing.
    The other books sound delightful too!

  4. What wonderful books! I love the Katherine Applegate books I've read too, and Willodeen sounds wonderful—the emphasis on nature seems like it pairs nicely with one of her other books, Wishtree. (And maybe with The One and Only Ivan as well—maybe nature is just a theme in all her books!) Dear Librarian sounds wonderful, and I love that you have your own memories of a bookmobile! A Boy Named Isamu and All of Us sound great as well. Thanks so much for the wonderful post, as always!

  5. OK, I'm sure I'm biased, but I need to get a copy of DEAR LIBRARIAN. I also have many wonderful librarians to thank for my love of books and writing. <3

  6. Thank you, everyone! I was busy yesterday reading posts & creating my #PB10for10 post today. I'm glad you may have found a new wonderful book for you to read!

  7. It sounds like you had a fabulous reading week Linda. I will be on the lookout for Willowdeen. One of the branches has Dear Librarian so of course I will be reading it. Have a wonderful week!


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