Monday, June 29, 2015

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? 6/29

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? --From Picture Books to YA is a weekly meme started by Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee at Unleashing Readers. This is a chance for bloggers to recap their week of reading and share their plans for the next reading adventures they will take. Visit the host blogs for a list of great blogs participating in this meme and a whole bunch of titles to add to your to-read lists.

Books I Finished This Week:

In the Unlikely Event by Judy Blume tells the story of a small town that is rocked by tragedy. The novel is based on true events that happened in Judy Blume's hometown when she was younger. I really liked the narrative voice in this book and was fascinated by a story of ridiculous circumstances. The story is about a series of plane crashes that occur in the town, which is located near Newark airport. I live a couple miles from the airport in Milwaukee and one of my biggest nightmares is that something like this would occur near me. Maybe that is why I found this book so gripping. Most likely it is because Judy Blume is a master storyteller. I highly recommend this one for adult readers. 

Drowning is Inevitable by Shalanda Stanley will be coming out in September. I received this copy from NetGalley. This book is outstanding. The story was intriguing and pulled me in right from the start. When Olivia was just a newborn, her mother walked into the river and never returned. She has spent her whole life trying to understand her mother's decision.  Her best friend, Jamie, lives in a war zone with a drunk father who beats his mother. The two of them rely on each other to stay sane in a crazy world. Then, one night, a fight with Jamie's father ends badly and the two of them call on their friends Max and Maggie for help. The four teens end up on the run as fugitives from the law. I would recommend this title for mature teens and adults. 

The World According to Humphrey by Betty G. Birney is told from the class hamster's point of view. As the story unfolds, Humphrey is able to help a bunch of the students in the class and even the teacher. I love the way each chapter ends with a fact about hamsters. It is a really cute book and I am looking forward to reading the rest of the series. I would absolutely recommend this one to grades 3 and up. 

What Was The March on Washington is another in this series that I read. I really like the way the series brings these big concepts down to understandable language and information for younger students. 

I finished listening to The Ring and The Crown by Melissa DeLaCruz. I think this audiobook is really well done. The narrator did a great job and made the story more interesting for me. I will definitely seek out the next book in this series. I would recommend this one to grades 8 and up. 

I read Pure Genius almost in one sitting. A lot of the book wasn't what I thought it would be. The first few chapters definitely gave me some great ideas for Genius Hour and it was nice to read about examples at elementary, middle, and high school levels. The rest of the book had a good message about social media and teaching ourselves and students to use it in a positive way. This is a quick read and would be a good one for any teacher who is interested in creating an innovation time or genius hour in their classroom. 

Books I am Currently Reading:

I am reading Reawakened by Colleen Houck. I loved her Tiger's Curse books, so I was excited to stumble across this one on NetGalley. I also started A God in Ruins by Kate Atkinson. 

What's Next? 
I have a LOT of professional reading that I want to do. I will definitely be diving into some of that this week. I will also continue to plug away at the books from my classroom library. On Friday, I am flying out to California to visit my sister and my nieces. I hope to do a bunch of picture book reading while I am out there.  

What are you reading this week? I would love to hear from you in the comments!


  1. Such a nice variety of books. I have Reawakened on my review stack too. Hopefully, I'll get to it this week. Come see my week here. Happy reading!

  2. Interested to see what you think of Reawakened. A little too much of a bodice ripper for me! The day after I read the new Blume book there was a crop duster going over our neighborhood to spray for gypsy moths, and I woke my daughter up and made her come downstairs! I never get freaked out by things like that-- I blame the book!

  3. Thanks for reminding me about Judy Blume's new book, plus Drowning Is Inevitable sounds interesting too, though a little dark. I'll also keep The Ring and The Drown on the list, Andrea. I'm hoping to get a lot of reading done this month after all the traveling! Have a good week!

  4. Ack! I thought I had "In the Unlikely Event" on my library request list, but I just double-checked and I do not. 483rd in line, here I come!

    My third graders LOVE the Humphrey series.

    Our library doesn't have Pure Genius, but I may look for it on Amazon. After my first year of doing Passion Projects, I am always on the look out for helpful resources, thanks!

  5. Thanks for the review of Pure Genius. I've been looking for something on this topic to add to my library for my pre-service teachers in Methods, and this looks like a readable PD book. I have a feeling I'll want to incorporate some of its ideas into my courses too.

  6. I'm waiting for A God In Ruins. I'm hoping to get to it as an audiobook. The Humphrey series is very popular in our library. Drowning is Inevitable sounds like an intense book that I'm not sure I'm ready for.

  7. You're the second person to recommend Blume's new one so it looks like I have some good reading ahead :)

  8. I, too, have a lot of professional reading I want to do. It is so hard to balance all the reading!!!
    Blume's newest sounds like a need-to-read. You are the first review I've read, and I was not surprised to see that it was good :)

    Happy reading this week!!

  9. Hi Andrea, I am teaching teachers who are taking their masters in high ability studies/gifted education, so I am especially interested in books that deal with genius/ eminence/ talent development - which is why the Pure Genius book caught my eye. Will look into that one.