Monday, June 3, 2013

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? 6/3/13

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA!

These memes were started by Teach Mentor Texts and Book Journeys, to inspire readers to share books they have read and will be reading. I have found many of my current reads by following bloggers participating in It’s Monday! What are you reading? Be sure to check out their sites for more information on what they are reading, and learn how to participate.

Last Week’s Favorites:

Doll Bones
Title: Doll Bones
Author: Holly Black
Review:  I loved this book!  Growing up, I used to watch Are You Afraid of the Dark?, on Friday nights, with my dad.  This would have been the perfect story for my dad to read to me, when I was a child, seeing as my grandma also had a creepy China doll, she lived minutes away from East Liverpool (the setting in the story) and my parents collected Lotus Ware pottery (the pottery that was part of the inspiration for the story).  I was on the edge of my seat, in anticipation and fear, throughout the entire book. 

Look Up!: Bird-Watching in Your Own Backyard

Title: Look Up! Bird-Watching in Your Own Backyard
Author: Annette LeBlanc Cate
Review:  Non-fiction told through a graphic novel/paragraph format.  The author encourages readers to stop, take notice and illustrate birds around them.  She teaches readers how to notice bird flight, color, shape, habits and songs.  Throughout the book humor is imbedded through the discussion between the noticer and the birds.  Readers also learn about bird habitats, migration and classification.  Great books for readers who are wanting to learn more about birds or for those beginner bird watchers.
More Bears!
Title: More Bears!
Author: Kenn Nesbitt
Illustrator: Troy Cummings
Review:  A very silly story about an author who is writing a story with NO bears.  However, children continue to beg him to add more and more bears to his story.  These bears come from near and far, all with very silly characteristics and names.  Finally, the author reaches his breaking point, and changes his mind about his decision to add bears.  This would be a great picture book to pair along with No Bears by Meg McKinlay.  Here's a final review from my five year old, "mommy, can we PLEASE read this book EVERYDAY!!!!" 

A Pig Parade Is a Terrible Idea

Title: A Pig Parade Is a Terrible Idea
Author: Michael Ian Black
Illustrator: Kevin Hawkes
Review:  Hilarious, vivid book about why a pig parade is a terrible idea!  Fantastic illustrations that made my children giggle with fits of laughter.  Descriptive language that will draw the reader in and make them realize why a pig parade is a terrible idea! 
Doug Unplugged

Title: Doug Unplugged
Author/Illustrator: Dan Yaccarino
Review:  Doug is a robot who is plugged in every morning, so that he can learn and download information.  One day Doug decides to unplug and view the world himself.  My first thought reading this book was a parallel connection to standardized testing.  Standardized tests require students to know the “plugged in” facts.  However, teachers want students to be able to unplug from the facts and learn about the world around them; something that is impossible to teach using just facts.  I definitely enjoyed this book, and can’t wait to read it to students to inspire them for their next inquiry day!
Eleanor and Park

Title: Eleanor and Park
Author: Rainbow Rowell
Review:  Words can't even describe how much I loved this book.  I described it to one of my good friends as "Romeo and Juliet" meets "1986" meets "A Child Called It".  First love, bullying, abuse, honesty and sacrifice are all words I would use to describe this beautifully written story.  

If You Want to See a Whale

Title: if you want to see a whale
Author: Julie Fogliano
Ilustrator: Erin E. Stead
Review: If you want to see a whale you will need much patience and imagination, in this beautifully illustrated story.  A boy and his dog search near and far to see a whale.  In the end, readers find the whale was there the entire time, they just weren't looking in the right direction.
Lucky Ducklings
Title:  A True Rescue Story:  Lucky Ducklings
Author:  Eva Moore
Illustrator:  Nancy Carpenter
Review: A true story about a protective mama duck who takes her babies for a walk.  However, the ducklings all fall in sewer drain and must be rescued.  The story could end here, but it doesn't!  Learn about a community that comes together to rescue these adorable little ducklings.

Title:  Out of My Mind
Author:  Sharon Creech  
Review:  I have had students ask me, at least once a week, if I've read this book yet.  After reading it, I'm so sad that I just now had a chance to meet Melody, an eleven year old with Cerebral Palsy. Melody is brilliant, and has the words to prove it, but the trouble is, she's unable to speak. She has attended public school through 4th grade, never having been included in a general education class.  Her 5th grade teacher makes a push for inclusion, which is where Melody finally has her time to shine!  However, not all the teachers or students are comfortable with Melody's abilities.  Listening to Melody tell of her struggles and triumphs, within her own mind, gave me goosebumps!  It's students like Melody that inspired me to become an Intervention Specialist and who still inspire me to make sure all students are provided the education they deserve.  Inclusion is a belief, not a place. Melody did a great job instilling this belief into many of her teachers and peers. 

Reading Plans for this Week:
Elephant Run
Title:  Elephant Run
Author:  Roland Smith
Nobody's Princess (Nobody's Princess, #1)
Title:  Nobody's Princess
Author:  Esther M. Friesner
A Long Way Away
Title:  A Long Way Away
Author/Illustrator:  Frank Viva
That Is Not a Good Idea!
Title:  That Is NOT a Good Idea!
Author/Illustrator:  Mo Willems
Exclamation Mark
Title:  Exclamation Mark
Author:  Amy Krouse Rosenthal
Ilustrator:  Tom Lichtenheld
Make Way for Ducklings
Title:  Make Way for Ducklings
Author/Illustrator:  Robert McCloskey

 Henry and the Cannons: An Extraordinary True Story of the American Revolution

Title:  Henry and the Cannons :  An Extraordinary True Story of the American Revolution
Author:  Don Brown 

Title:  Notice and Note:  Strategies for Close Reading
Authors:  Kylene Beers and Robert Probst
**Special Note: Join a three part Twitter chat, discussing Notice and Note, on June 6, 13 and 20 at 8pm #NNNchat.  I also linked the picture of the book to the Facebook group, related to the chat.

Take Me Out to the Yakyu 

Title:  Take Me Out to the Yakyu
Author:  Aaron Meshon

  Forest Has a Song: Poems

Title:  Forest Has a Song
Poet:  Amy Ludwig Vanderwater
Illustrator:  Robbin Gourley


  1. Loved Nobody's Princess and the sequel! Now that I know that Doll Bones is set in East Liverpool, I have to read it! My own children think dolls are super creepy, so I'll keep this away from them!

  2. Dang, so many good books I don't know where to start! Doll Bones is the MG novel I'm most looking forward to reading, I think. I LOVED Pig Parade so much. I thought it was adorable. And I thought the old-fashioned illustrations in Lucky Duckling were awesome. I am reading Eleanor & Park right now and you are so right, it's fabulous. I laughed out loud at the new Mo Willems book. I hope you enjoy it too!

  3. I loved Doll Bones too, I wrote about it this week as well. You have a lot of personal connections to that story! And, I have to say, High Five to watching Are You Afraid of the Dark as a kid! My sister and I watched it after Ren and Stimpy. I would sit through Ren and Stimpy with her so she would watch Are You Afraid of the Dark with me because, well, because I WAS afraid of the dark! ;)

  4. Wow! What a great post!
    Doll Bones is a book everyone is raving about. I actually have it right next to be to get to soon :)
    I loved Look-Up! Reminded me of watching birds with my dad.
    As for the rest- I have not read them. Thank you so much for sharing :)
    [And YES! to Nickelodeon as a kid!]

    Happy reading this week! :)

    1. Just realized as I was exiting that I told a fib! I've read Out of my Mind and I adore it! I was so upset when it was not awarded anything!
      Also, Forest has a Song is brilliant- enjoy :)