Monday, August 13, 2018

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? 8/13/2018

I'm excited to be linking up with Kelly Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen Vincent of Teach Mentor Texts, It's Monday! What Are You Reading? 

 Picture Books  

We are still on a food reading kick and this one was cute though I don't think it's going to make our list of top 8 food books.  Why 8 you ask? I just like the way the photo collage looks so I am capping it at 8. Essentially, this book is all about the antics of a hot dog who is just trying not to be eaten.  Cute illustrations and not too many words per page so it held L..T.'s attention.   

Animal Strike at the Zoo. It's True!  is a book we have had forever, but we are on a reading kick with it.  My oldest C. Bear loved this book in his toddler years. L.T. read it once and put it back on the shelf, but recently we have gotten back into reading this very fun rhyming book.  

Lately we've been having some social issues (sharing, taking turns, being polite) and not with my youngest who seems to have mastered those skills.  I thought my 8 year old could benefit from a picture book that talked about social skills.  He never heard the phrase Do Unto Others so the book does a good job of explaining it in a funny way.  A new family of otters moves in next to a hare.  The hare seems upset to have new neighbors and a wise owl tells him to treat his neighbors as he would want to be treated.  This gets the hare thinking of how he would want someone to use their manners, be a good sport (PLEASE let that one sink in), cooperate etc.  There are funny little pictures to go with what he is thinking and it does a good job of teaching social skills without being so preachy. Both boys gave this book a thumbs up.  

Chapter Books

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When reading our King Arthur book last week we talked a bit about Merlin.  This led us to our next book which is the Usborne Stories of Wizards.  It is filled with short stories (maybe 6-10 pages in length) that also have illustrations to accompany the story.  It really is the perfect book for C. Bear to read.  

YA/Adult Books

I have had such a great week of reading books. It has been one book after another where I am excited to read them and just so invested in the story.  I love when that happens. 

I finished Where the Crawdads Sing and just loved it.  The book takes place in the marshland in North Carolina where Kya basically raises herself (with help from a few neighbors) as one by one her family leaves her.  The book jumps back and forth between Kya's childhood where she becomes known as The Marsh Girl and the present day where the police are trying to solve a murder that happened in the marsh and it's interesting to see how the stories intertwine.  I felt this book had a little bit of everything including survival, friendship, love and of a murder mystery who done it storyline.  

 So many people have read this and raved about it and so I couldn't wait to add this to my library holds.   It certainly lived up to the hype.  I lost myself in the story of Lucy, who was struck by lighting when she was 8 years old and became a math whiz.  She has been homeschooled the past couple of years, but her grandmother wants her to try out middle school.  It's an endearing story of a girl trying to navigate middle school while also trying to not let others know about her mathematical abilities which is hard to keep hidden.

 I am about 100 pages into this book and am really enjoying it.  The reviews on this have been hit or miss, but so far this is a winner for me.  And reading this has made me really curious to find out more about the real Atomic City where the book takes place. 

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Dragon Picture Book Part II

It's the summer of the dragon in our house.  You can see part one of our dragon picture book roundup here.  Here is the 2nd batch of dragon books we are loving. 

Waking Dragons

 The bright and colorful illustrations captured L.T.'s attention. I thought it was very clever in how they went through a typical morning of getting ready for school but had the dragons getting ready.  L.T. liked that it wasn't a long story maybe a sentence or two per page which helped keep his attention.  

No Dragons For Tea  

This is an excellent book about fire safety explained in a way that children will understand.  A young girl invites a dragon over for tea.  While drinking tea the dragon sneezes fires which causes a fire in the little girl's house.  The girls springs into action and gets her and the dragon to safety.  She also doesn't let the dragon go back in to get his teddy bear. 

Dragon Stew  

Five bored Vikings go looking for a dragon to make dragon stew.  They learn a valuable lesson that you do not want to mess with a dragon.  L.T.connected to the  Viking with the red beard (redheads unite) so I think that made him really love this book and so that's why we read it several times in one week. 

 Do NOT Bring Your Dragon To The Library

I loved the diverse characters in the book from people of all different ethnicities to a child in a wheelchair.  It also was a great rhyming story in all the things a library has to offer and how a dragon should NOT be brought to the library.

One Drowsy Dragon   

A very tired dragon wants to go to sleep, but is kept up by the other dragons who are causing all sorts of havoc.  L.T liked the colorful pictures and counting the dragons.  

Dragons Love Tacos I & II

If you ask L.T. his favorite book ever it's Dragons Love Tacos I &II.  He giggles when I read it and just stares at the pictures and really gets engrossed in the book and imagining if he had a dragon taco party. 

The Knight and the Dragon

I love Tomie DePaola's illustration style and that the pictures tell the story without me even needing to read the book to L.T.  The bigger message of this book is that by working together they can achieve something great. 

Not Your Typical Dragon

I really enjoyed this book about a dragon who couldn't breathe fire and how not being typical helped save his family. 

Monday, August 6, 2018

It's Monday. What Are You Reading? 8/6/18

I'm excited to be linking up with Kelly Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen Vincent of Teach Mentor Texts, It's Monday! What Are You Reading? 

Picture Books

Josh Funk does it again.  We just can't enough of Josh Funk books.  His stories always catch L.T's attention and the illustrations are great.

We are still on a food book kick. 

Everyone Loves Bacon was a huge hit.  Fun illustrations and well the title is true because at the end poor bacon gets gobbled up.   

Creepy Carrots wasn't such a hit.  L.T. was freaked out about carrots trying to scare a bunny into not eating them. I liked how the black, white and grey graphics with a hint of orange for the carrots really did set the tone for creepy, but can see how L.T. was freaked out. 

Chapter Books

C. Bear and I started reading The Muppets as King Arthur.  It's a graphic novel and pretty humorous (though most of the humor is going over C. Bear's head).  I would say this story is very loosely based on the King Arthur story with Kermit playing King Arthur and Rowlf playing Merlin.   

We plan on reading another more traditional version of King Arthur and comparing the two books. 

YA/Adult Lit

I read The Sapphire Widow and was drawn into the unique setting.  The book is set in Ceylon, which sounded like such a unique place to live with many different cultures living there.  This story has betrayal, love, and quite a bit of mystery as Louisa unravels her dead husband's secret life.  It was also a story about healing and family.  I stayed up way too late because I just needed to know what happened next.  The pace of this story was great with something happening to keep me intrigued in each chapter.   

I started reading Where The Crawdads Sing.   I am only a quarter of the way in, but it's really good. Like stay up late to keep reading good.   

I think next up on my list to read is The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl. I had this on my TBR list for awhile and my hold at the library just came in. Woo Hoo!

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Thunder Girls : Freya and the Magic Jewel

C Bear and I have been focused on all things Vikings and Norse Myths this summer.  I always knew about Thor and Loki, but there is so much more to Norse Mythology.  

Thunder Girls is a fiction book about Freya, a girl goddess from Vanheim who goes to live in Asgard (where Odin rules) to go to Asgard Academy.  There are familiar gods in the book like Thor, Loki, and Frey and we are introduced to some fictitious ones as well.  Freya is looking for her nanny named Gullveig, who went hunting for gold in Asgard and started a war between Asgard and Vanaheim.  And though that is her focus for going to Asgard there are also stories of friendship, budding romance and learning about her powers and skills.

It was a well researched story and really used Norse Mythology facts and tidbits throughout the book.  Our biggest struggle with the book was that C Bear found reading so many pages without some sort of illustration or picture kind of daunting.  So he became more reluctant to read it.

I think this has more to do with where we are in our reading journey (like chapter books with pictures and graphic novels )  than the actual book which I really enjoyed.  

Do you have any chapter book recommendations that have pictures to break up the chapters?

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