#IMWAYR time again, when readers share what they have been reading and find out what others have been up to in the past week. Kathryn hosts the adult version of this meme at Book Date. Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki at Unleashing Readers host the kidlit rendition. Whatever you are looking forward to in your next great read, these are fabulous places to start your search.
The waiting is over.
Our granddaughter, Ada Jimin, was born Wednesday morning at 1:30, and our grandson, (name to be determined), arrived late Saturday evening. They are both healthy and beautiful!
We Sang You Home by Richard Van Camp & Julie Flett (Illustrations)
I've posted about this book before, but want to highlight it again, since I purchased copies for the new babies and their parents. Julie Flett's illustrations are gorgeous while Van Camp's text speaks to the special magic that a new baby brings. It has a special poignancy now that we are all in the process of welcoming new babies into our family and experiencing how profoundly terrifying and life affirming it is.
The Tiny Tale of Little Pea by Davide Cali & Sébastien Mourrain (Illustrations) (Netgalley)
This title, to be published in September, is a delightful retelling of the Tom Thumb tale except with a unique twist at the end. Sébastien Mourrain's illustrations are charming in shades of green.
Little Pea's parents ensure that he has a wonderful childhood. He turns out to be a precocious child who enjoys the same kinds of activities other children his age enjoy like climbing & wrestling, but Little Pea also taught himself to swim and engages in tightrope walking.
This might be my favourite image...
It isn't until Little Pea starts school that he realizes how different he is, and how his size limits his ability to participate in the activities of his peers.
At the end we learn that Little Pea may be small, but when he grows up he can still live a rich life and contribute to the world in a surprising way.
While my son and his partner were sleeping, I held my granddaughter in my arms and read at least parts of these two graphic novels out loud to her. I stopped when it came to the scary parts. (I also tried reading Bill Bryson's At Home, but there are too many words to read out loud.) When people passed through the lounge they either smiled or looked askance. I told the latter, "We're raising a reader."
Good-bye Marianne: A Story of Growing Up in Nazi Germany by Irene N. Watts & Kathryn E. Shoemaker (illustrations)
In 1938 Germany, after Kristallnacht, Marianne is forced to leave school because she is Jewish. Terrible things are happening. She sees death and destruction all around her. She misses her father who has gone underground to hide from the Nazi's. Her mother manages to arrange for Marianne to leave Germany on one of the Kindertransports to England. The story ends unfinished, but is picked up and completed in Seeking Refuge, the sequel that I read earlier this year.
Shoemaker's black and white illustrations hint at the evils Marianne experienced, without revealing the true depths of horror, thus making it appropriate for intermediate aged students. If I can carve out the time, I'm going to now read the print based version of this story.
Lola by J. Torres & Elbert Or (Illustrator)
I am so thankful to Earl Dizon, at The Chronicles Of A Children's Book Writer, for introducing me to this book at his blog. In this novel a young boy travels to the Philippines for his grandmother's funeral. His Lola had supernatural powers that terrified him. (Lola is the tagalog word for grandmother) On this journey he has to come to terms with his own ability to see beyond ordinary reality.
I appreciated that while this is a great story, it also teaches us some tagalog terms and introduces us to Filipino culture. I adore how Elbert Or's illustrations capture a balance between sweetness and suspense. It's a little bit creepy, and that ending is a shocker. I can think of at least a half a dozen readers who I know will love this.
Lost in the Sun by Lisa Graff & Ramon de Ocampo (Narrator)
This is my favourite Lisa Graff novel so far. I am absolutely infatuated with these characters. They are complex, authentic beings who are dealing with traumatic events. In a freak accident when he was in grade five, Trent accidently killed one of his friends with a hockey puck. He is in middle school now and still having a lot of difficulty dealing with this. He seems has developed an aversion to sports and alienated his previous friends. His new friend, Fallon Little, has her own issues to deal with. I was delighted to see that most of the adults around them are sensitive and helpful. His father isn't exactly role model material, but does his best. His mother is a rock. Ms. Emerson, the"wrinkled old crone," reminded me of my favourite high school teacher.
It All Comes Down to This by Karen English (Netgalley)
I'm working on a full review for this. Right now, here is what you need to know.
This is one of those books that transforms the way you see the world.
Make sure you get a copy when it is published on July 11th.
Home Sweet Motel by Chris Grabenstein & Bryan Kennedy (Narrator)
The beginning didn't work for me, and at first I wasn't sure if I would finish this. I persisted because many of you have spoken highly of it. It snuck up on me and before I knew it, I was hooked and couldn't stop listening. P.T. Wilkie and his family are in trouble. They have a $100,000 loan coming due in one month or they will lose Wonderland Motel, their home for generations. I appreciated the entire collection of characters, especially the old grandfather. I love that P.T. can be goofy, but also serious about saving the motel. His new friend, Gloria, has the business acumen to support his storytelling talent. Together, the two of them come up with some impressive money making schemes. The book is loaded with plenty of humor, crazy antics, and enough action to keep young readers fully entertained.
I'm reading Bill Bryson's At Home: A Short History of Private Life, and Jack Cheng's See You in the Cosmos. I'm listening to Cavern of Secrets by Linda Sue Park.
I have a lot of library books to get to.
PROGRESS ON MY READING GOALS
50 Books by Canadian Indigenous Authors 13/50
Chocolate Lily (CL) 51/51
Goodreads Reading Challenge 196/333