It’s Monday: What Are You Reading? April 16, 2012

Weekly, the folks at Teach Mentor Texts, Jen and Kellee, host the meme “It’s Monday! What are you reading? From Picture Books to YA” It’s a chance to recap what I’ve read in the last week and a peek at what I’ll be reading in the week ahead. Check out Jen and Kellee’s site to join in or see the links of other reader/bloggers to find out where their reading adventures have taken them. Click on the cover images for the synopsis of each book. For my kids, it was spring break so I had some bigger chunks of time to concentrate on chapter books, as you’ll see below.

My Reading Adventures from the past week . . .

Picture Books worth checking out:


All three of these would be great reads with preschoolers-first grade.


A picture book for older kids (and adults!):

A feast for the eyes, the illustrations are gorgeous. The text is told in an informal and narrative manner and covers the African American experience from the early slave days up to the recent election of Barack Obama. It was a perfect accompaniment to Crow, see below.


Middle Grade Chapter Books

2012 is off to a great start for new releases in middle grade fiction, and this is no exception! This is a terrific work of historical fiction set in 1898 Wilmington, North Carolina. We view this racially tense time through the eyes of Moses, the only child in a middle class black family, that includes his highly educated reporter father, his mother, who was born into slavery, and his wise Granny Boo who was a much abused house slave. The suspense of the story is gripping and makes for a great vehicle to learn about life in the Jim Crow era. The harsh realities of lynching and sexual violence, are referenced,  though not in detail, so I think sharing this book with some background context would be necessary. I’d recommend for 5th-9th grade. (Random House, 2012)


I finished this stack of Caldecott’s and will post on them later in the week.

Upcoming Reading Adventures:

Continuing these chapter books . . .

We’re on the slow train to finishing this as a whole family read-aloud, but we are enjoying every moment with this thought provoking book.


The “adult” book currently on the bedside table. So far, interesting set up and I’m looking forward to having more time with it this week.


And starting this book . . .

1928 Newbery Medal. A pigeon. I’m guessing this won’t be as fun as Mo Willems’ Pigeon.


Happy Reading!


12 comments on “It’s Monday: What Are You Reading? April 16, 2012

  1. You’re so right, 2012 is a great year for MG fiction! Crow is fantastic, such a powerful story and I learned so much from that book. Loved Heart and Soul too. One of the most beautifully illustrated books I have ever read.

  2. Heart and Soul and Crow each sound like must reads. I might follow your lead and try to read them together. I am also reading Wonder right now. It is just a book that everyone should read and learn from. As for Gayneck being like Mo Willems’ Pigeon. Ha.

  3. I was really happy for you and your reads until I scrolled down and saw Gay-Neck. 🙂 I am amazed by all the Nerdbery challengers. I’m waiting to jump in a few years down the road. Wonder and Nigh Circus are two of my current favorites. I loved the audio of Night Circus. It helped me get through it. I don’t think I would have picked it up otherwise because it would have freaked me out. I hope you enjoy it. I think the imagery in the writing is beautiful.

  4. Your comment on Gay-Neck and Mo Willems made me giggle. Isn’t Baby Bear Sees Blue a fantastic book? I loved the illustrations and the bold colors. Glad to see you’re still enjoying Wonder and not reading ahead 😉

  5. I too loved your comment about Gay-Neck and Willems. It made me smile too. I actually enjoyed it more that I thought I would. Wonder is so incredible I am getting ready to re-read it. Have fun.

  6. OOH you have several books here that I want to read!

  7. Lorna says:

    I totally agree that Heart and Soul is so beautiful! I’m sure it’s the use of oil paint, but everything is so luminescent.

  8. Lorna says:

    The reading of Heart and Soul and Crow at the same time was a coincidence, but I’m glad I did it that way. It was a nice pairing.

  9. Lorna says:

    I’ve heard that the Night Circus audio is great, though I wonder if I would have a hard time keeping track of the dates. At least with what I’ve read so far, I’m constantly going back to the chapter headings to confirm the dates, since there is a bit of bouncing around.

  10. Lorna says:

    Baby Bear is so cute! I’ve got my favorites from when my kids are little, but it’s nice to have newer books to give as gifts to friends and family for that age group.

  11. Lorna says:

    So far, Gay-Neck is very “Smoky”-like. Not horrible, but really way more than I ever needed to know about pigeons! 🙂

  12. Lorna says:

    Thanks for stopping by, Sheila! Have a great reading week!

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