Hosted by Shelia at Book Journey.
Well, this week I started and finished two books and am still working on the third.
Here's the thing. When I love a book I either savor it or devour it. (The timeline looks similar to when I don't like a book too...except it's called stalling or getting-it-over-with.) Anyway, I found two I devoured, and am still savoring Splendors and Glooms. Honestly, Splendors is such a good read-in-the-darkness-of-night book that I only read it in bed with dim lighting. I can't help it.
Want to know what I devoured? I am going to pretend you are smiling and nodding and saying softly, "yeah, yeah!"
Little Dog, Lost by Marion Dane Bauer
Atheneum Books, 2012
Recommend for grades 3-6
I loved reading this book! The style of Bauer's writing gets the reader straight to the emotions swirling through the characters' lives. Mark longs for a dog-having no father, siblings or cousins close enough to count. Buddy, the dog with
and a brown mask
and a sweet ruffle of fur on her bum
just beneath her black whip of a tail,"
has been given away to a woman (that knows nothing about dogs), after her boy had to move to the city. And Mr. Larue who lives alone in the big empty mansion-afraid to reach out to others and frightening most people with his reclusive ways. the story shifts between characters to keep things in constant motion. There are true feelings here that some kids will relate to, but the story doesn't feel dragged down by emotion. I think this is a wonderful book for 4th graders to read independently. I plan to read it aloud to my 3rd graders. I'm going to buy this one!
Liar & Spy by Rebecca Stead
Wendy Lamb Books, 2012
Recommend to grades 6-8
Realistic Fic. with a touch of mystery
Stead knows how to perfectly write from 7th grade Georges' perspective. The inner dialogue is right on. I loved the volleyball sequence where Georges is counting rotations until he is up for serve again, and dreading it, praying for the bell to end class before it reaches him. That was me in volleyball! I couldn't put this book down, there is so much packed in to this story. The way Georges' father brings things to Georges' mother while she is working at the hospital does set us up for more to be revealed at the end of the book, but not in any sort of way that diminishes the power at the end of this story. The relationships Georges' forms with some of the kids in his new building are well developed and make this story seem much deeper than its 192 pages might suggest. I was crying at the end, one line just got me, and I still can't figure out why. Can't share it now though, since some of you have yet to experience it! I am recommending this to 6+ as a read aloud. So many discussion points, in fact, more than you could ever get to without killing the flow of the book. Loved it more than When You Reach Me. And, when Georges finds the note under his pillow from Safer it felt like Stead was smiling a little...here we go again...? Nope :)
This is the book I have been hanging out with each night for a while now...I'm running out of chapters. Sigh.
I officially start the 2012-2013 school year tomorrow! Yay :)