Monday, May 27, 2013

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? 5/27/13

Check out all the links at Teach Mentor Texts today!  The sun is finally out after a soaking week of rain.  Hooray!

Picture Books

I picked up Ted Kooser's House Held Up By Trees because of Jon Klassen's illustrations.  The origin of this story is interesting.  Ted Kooser actually saw a house that looked something like this, then developed the story to go along.  The writing is beautiful, though there is not much of a story.  I expect that it will go right over the heads of my first graders, but it will be interesting to see what they have to say about how Klassen's illustrations compare to his other work. 

I loved this book.  Fans of Jackie French's Diary of a Wombat books and Doreen Cronin's Diary of a Worm, Spider, and Fly will appreciate this one.  Tim Bowers' illustrations are fantastic.  I love how the eyes of the fish are so expressive.  I expect my kiddos are going to be big fans of this one.
The Great Fuzz Frenzy was another new-to-me title that was highly recommended by a colleague.  I was teaching alliteration and it fit in quite well, but as I read through, I realized what a great mentor text it was for so many things.  If you haven't read it, it's the story of what happens when strange fuzzy object (a tennis ball) falls into a prairie dog burrow.  I'm thinking it would make an awesome reader's theater script--that might be a project for this summer.  I ended up buying my own copy for my classroom. 

Middle Grade


Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy by Gary Schmidt was recommended to me on Twitter.  I got into a bit of a Maine kick after I read Navigating Early, so this was naturally on the list.  I have to say, I was a little disappointed.  I always feel funny when I don't like a book that so many other people really like.  I had a hard time getting into it.  I appreciated the story, especially since it was based on real events, but I don't think I was ever really invested in the characters. 




I had seen this title on a lot of lists and knew almost nothing about it except the title when I started reading.  This is a memoir, written by Will Schwalbe about the unofficial book club formed between him and his mother during her cancer treatments.  This was a tribute to reading and how books can bring people together, and I have to say that it added a few titles to my TBR pile as well.  It was interesting to read this one and The Fault In Our Stars at the same time.  There were two very different perspectives on a similar situation.  I would recommend this one.

Currently Reading

I'm currently still listening to Matched on audiobook, although it is rapidly coming to an end.  I'm thinking about taking the long way to and from work tomorrow.  I just started Touch Blue by Cynthia Lord (yes, another Maine title!) and I'm really enjoying it so far.


  1. Great titles here Kate! The Great Fuzz Frenzy and Memoirs of a Goldfish are such fun books to read aloud. Glad to hear you're loving Touch Blue. It's one of my favorite Maine stories.

    Happy Reading!

  2. Great books this week! I especially loved Memoirs of a Goldfish - especially since the author is a local newscaster here in Detroit.

  3. Great Fuzz Frenzy looks fun! I'm always looking for good books to make into reader's theater :)

  4. I very much enjoyed The End of Your Life Book Club. It's so weird when one reads books with the same topic unintentionally at the same time.