Monday, April 8, 2013

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? 4/8

It's Monday! What are you reading? --From Picture Books to YA--is a weekly meme hosted by Jen and Kellee at Teach Mentor Texts.  Head over to their blog for links to many great blogs and a plethora of good book suggestions.

This was a fabulous reading week because I was on Spring Break and had a cold.  The cold made me not want to leave the couch so a lot of reading transpired.  

Books I Finished This Week:

I really enjoyed Throne of Glass by Sarah Maas.  The characters were well-developed and I found myself really rooting for certain things to happen.  I love that this is a fantasy novel which reads somewhat like historical fiction.  The characters were believable and there was a sense that this kind of magic really could exist in the world.  I also really loved the mystery involved with the story.  It is one that I highly recommend for grades 6 and up.

For some reason it took me a while to pick this one up from my shelf.  I think the blurb on the back did a good job but for some reason it didn't really sell me on the book.  I am so glad I decided to pick up Penny From Heaven by Jennifer Holm.  I was hooked in the first few pages and loved the voice of Penny throughout the book.  What really kept me reading was the mystery behind her father's death.  Why wouldn't anyone talk about it?  It really intrigued me, along with the descriptions of the contrast between her mother's family and her father's Italian family.  When I finally did find out the mystery, I was in awe of this author's way of telling a very important historical story.  This is a book that talks about an important part of our history during WWII and does so in a subtle way by describing the effects on the family years later.  Masterful storytelling and beautiful writing made this book one that I read in one sitting.  I highly recommend it for grades 4 and up.

I finally finished listening to the audiobook of The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern.  I am so glad I decided to listen to this one, even though it was really long.  The narrator has such a magical voice and it made me enjoy the magical story that much more.  This is not the type of book that I usually would pick up when it comes to adult books.  However, I found the story fascinating and the writing beautiful.  I loved the descriptions that were sprinkled throughout written in second person and describing what you experience at the circus.  There was just enough mystery and romance to delight in and I thoroughly enjoyed this book.  I would highly recommend this book to teens and adults alike.

Hold Fast by Blue Balliet is full of amazing language and word play.  It is a tribute to Langston Hughes as much as an adventure and a mystery. When Early's father disappears, the police believe that he just ran out on his family.  But Early and her mother and brother know that is not what happened.  They work to try to figure out what is going on, and through the circumstances they end up in a homeless shelter.  Balliet weaves a portrait of life in the shelter into this mystery and makes this an important book for all kids to read.  I recommend this one for grades 4 and up.

This is a fascinating book that would be good for talking point of view with teens.  The narrator is a boy with Cerebral Palsy that is unable to communicate.  His father has started to hint that he may believe that "putting him out of his misery" is the right thing to do.  I have to say, it was hard for me to read this.  I think this is probably closer to the truth than the conclusion that all people in this state are just "vegetables" or incapable of thinking about things in an age-appropriate way.  I read this one for the NerdPrintz challenge and would recommend it to teens and adults.  See more of my thoughts about this one here.

I enjoyed Tithe by Holly Black more than I thought I would.  I wasn't sure I would enjoy the story about fairies.  However, this was a really good mystery and adventure.   I would recommend it especially to fans of fantasy.  It was a quick read and fun.

The Boyfriend List by E.Lockhart was a very fun read.  It was a nice girly book and I really enjoyed the voice of the protagonist.  I thought the use of footnotes throughout the book was a fun style detail.  I would definitely recommend this one to teens, especially girls.

I really enjoyed reading Ready Player One by Ernest Cline.  It was fun to read through all the 80's references and I thought the premise was really clever. In this book, the real world is pretty ridiculously awful which is why almost everyone escapes into the OASIS, a virtual reality world.  Then, the creator of the OASIS dies and a video announces a hunt for the secret keys that he has left somewhere in the virtual worlds.  The person who finds these things will inherit his fortune and the company. The book sucked me in from page one and I was riveted throughout the action.  I highly recommend this one.

Graphic Novels:

I enjoyed all three of the graphic novels I read this week. I will be looking for copies to add to my classroom library.  I am really interested in finding and reading the rest of the Olympians series.  I learned a thing or two about Athena from this one.  

Books I am Currently Reading:

I am reading Airborn by Kenneth Oppel.  I love it so far.  This one is for the Steampunk'd challenge and the NerdPrintz challenge.  I also have started listening to Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor.  I enjoyed Daughter of Smoke and Bone so much on audio and I am loving this one so far also. This narrator does such a great job.  

What's Next:  
I don't know what I will decide to pick up next.  I have a pile of books from the library and many shelves of great reads at home as well as multiple books to read on my Kindle.  I would like to get to Code Name Verity sometime soon as well as The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, but I will see what this week brings.  

What are you reading?  Have a great reading week!

1 comment:

  1. Okay, Penny from Heaven and Hold Fast are on my vacation reading list. Thanks for putting them on my radar. I can't believe how much you read last week! Holy Moly!