It's Monday! What Are You Reading?! 3-27-17

Thanks to our dynamic hosts: Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kelle at Unleashing Readers. Head to either blog to find reviews as well as dozens of links to other blogs filled with reviews and recommendations!

I love March because A. My birthday, and B. Because it's supposed to turn lamb-like by the time it winds up. Well, I did have a birthday this month, but my the month is remaining a bit too lion-like. Come on spring, just come on!
To cheer myself up I'm sharing some books with you!

Books I Read this Week:

Princess Cora and the Crocodile by Laura Amy Schiltz
Illustrated by Brian Floca
Candlewick Press, 2017
74 pages
Recommended for grades 1-4

Princess Cora has it bad. Cora's days are tightly scheduled with bathing (Nanny's thrice-a-day demand), reading (dull books chosen by her mother), and by incessant workouts run by her father (mainly involving a jump rope).  When Cora wishes for a dog to become her companion, she is granted a pet that is very much not an adorable yellow puppy. 
But maybe this crocodile could turn out to be ok. He volunteers to dress up like Cora to fool (and set straight) her nanny and parents. Of course this plan is doomed. But while it is unfurling, Cora is outside experiencing a day of her own making.
Delightful illustrations bring this thoughtful and silly story to life.

Shackles from the Deep: Tracing the Past of a Sunken Slave Ship, a Bitter Past, and a Rich Legacy by Michael H. Cottman
National Geographic, 2017
127 pages
Recommended for grades 4+

Get your hands on this book. Read it, and then tell other people about it.
Even though I felt a bit like an intruder at times, reading something that was at times so sacred and personal, I'm glad to have intruded. My mind was stimulated with images and thoughts throughout the reading of this book. The Henrietta Marie was a slave ship that now rests below the ocean, and has been viewed and researched by black scuba divers. The impact of this is deep. 

At one point early in the book the author explains how small insignificant glass beads were used to trade for human lives. When I read this passage near the end of the book it stuck with me:
"...I ran my hands through the grains of sand and plucked tiny blue, yellow, and purple beads from the ocean floor."

Star Scouts by Mike Lawrence
First Second, 2017
Science Fiction/Graphic Novel
187 pages
Recommended for grades 3-6

When Avani is accidentally transported to space by an alien named Mabel, she is in for an eye opening adventure!
Avani doesn't fit in with the girls in her new school, and the Flower Scouts are not her kind of girls. Too much talk about boys and make-up, and no one interested in rodeos or barrel racing (except the girl she overlooks, but more on her in the next book I assume).
Avani becomes friends with some Star Scouts, works hard at earning badges, and proves her strength of character.
Also, fits the bill for diverse books!

I'm Currently Reading:

I'm Currently Reading Aloud to my 4th Graders:

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. I can think of a few readers who will probably enjoy Princess Cora. Shackles sounds fascinating. The Girl in the Ghost Machine is in a stack of ARC's I got at a conference so hopefully I'll get to it soon.

  2. Crafty Cat looks oddly appealing! I know my students adore Out of My Mind.

  3. I'm looking forward to reading Princess Cora and the Crocodile and Star Scouts. I found Shackles from the Deep fascinating and oddly, I can't remember if I read Out of My Mind (I'll have to pull it out and refresh my memory)

  4. I just bought Princess Cora for my class but I am going to read it first! Love Floca's illustrations. I am going to look for Shackles from the Deep. Thank you for this recommendation!

  5. Shackles from the Deep sounds deeply moving, I just adore National Geographic and their commitment to making informational texts accessible and engaging for young readers, helping kids develop a passion for science and history.

  6. I love Out of My Mind. Cora and the Crocodile sounds like fun too!

  7. Gotta get my hands on Cora and the Crocodile. I love these kinds of books that shake up what it means to be a specific gender. Shackles from the Deep looks like an important, profound read.

  8. Been hearing so much love about Out Of My Mind - I should get to it - as it seems perfect for our current reading theme.


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