#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.
I am finally feeling like I have won the battle with the sinus infection that's been plaguing me for a month. I'm thankful for the miracles of modern medicine and a decent health care system. As soon as I catch up on all the housework I've abandoned over the past month, I'll feel like my life is back to as normal as it ever gets around here.
As you might be aware, I am the grandmother of two brilliant, adorable nine month old grandchildren. We share a house with one of them, so I get to spend a lot of time with my granddaughter Ada. Ada is half Korean, so I have been thinking about books for her as she grows up. This week I checked out a couple of picture books to consider before purchasing them. Both of them were about food, and both have recipes at the end!
Peek-a-Who? by Nina Laden
Any book or activity where peek a boo is part of the action, is exciting for Ada. This one has a hole that shows part of something, with the beginning phrase, Peek-a.. Then when you turn the page, you see the object and a word that rhymes with boo. The owl page shows who. The cow shows moo... At the ending it says you! and includes a mirror. This one is a hit.
Jane Foster's Colors by Jane Foster
This one has no real gimmicks, but both of the babies enjoyed it. It is amazing how differently they show this. Everett just gazes intently at the images and enjoys turning the pages. Ada grabs at the images and wants absolute control over the page turning. Each page highlights a specific colour with animals and things that are connected to it. It is beautiful.
No Kimchi for Me! by Aram Kim
I predict a Korean feast in our future. It will include kimchi pancakes!
I like Aran Kim’s charming illustrations showing the characters as cats. I’m impressed at how human they all manage to look. I like that the grandmother (halmoni) helps the young girl to expand her culinary experiences.
Bee-Bim Bop! by Linda Sue Park
Nice rhythmic poetry tells the story of a family preparing a young girl's favourite meal, Bee-bim Bop. Ho Baek Lee’s illustrations capture her excitement delightfully. We all see our Ada growing up to be just this little girl here.
NON FICTION PICTURE BOOKS
Bees: A Honeyed History by Piotr Socha
I appreciate the combination of scientific, cultural, and archaeological information in this oversized book about bees. The artwork is gorgeous! I had a rudimentary knowledge about some aspects of bees. Those aspects are now much deeper, plus I know a whole lot more about bees than I knew was possible.
When I finished it, I felt ready for part one of a workshop on backyard beekeeping Sunday morning. This didn't exactly prove to be the case. I stopped off at the library on my way home to pick up an adult title on beekeeping. I hope to become less terrified of killing off any bees I should eventually decide to keep.
Best in Snow by April Pulley Sayre
As thankful as I am that winter is over, these stunning photographs and lyrical poetry make me yearn for one more snowfall. (I concede that living where we do, this is an easy claim to make since it is highly unlikely to happen)
I don’t know enough about how photography style works to figure out how I managed to make the connection, but I opened this book and at the second page wondered if this was the same author as the Raindrops Roll book. I checked the cover and sure enough it is!
MIDDLE GRADE NOVELS
Book Scavenger by Jennifer Chambliss Bertman & Sarah Watts (Illustrator)
Finished at last! I wish I hadn’t read this book in fits and starts. When I finally gave up on trying to read it like that, and allowed myself to fall into it, I couldn’t stop reading. I like the characters and their relationships with one another. I love all the literary references. I wish there really was a book scavenger game.
Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus by Dusti Bowling
Aven Green and her friends Connor and Zion are characters who are easy to admire and root for. I love that while each of them has their own challenge, it's their individual humanity that shines through.
ADULT AND YA
Shadowshaper by Daniel José Older & Anika Noni Rose (Narrator)
I'm not a big fan of fantasy, but I was hooked nearly from the get go with this book. It's like a parallel world where the everyday sexism, racism, gentrification, police violence and homophobia are carried over into a world where fantastical spiritual realms coexist and are visible and manipulated by a select few. I loved Sierra Santiago and her friends and am looking forward to reading more about them.
Thud! by Terry Pratchett & Stephen Briggs (Narrator)
This wasn't one of my favourite Terry Pratchett books although it's full of endearing moments and resonates with his satirical humour. All of his work opens a mirror so we see ourselves more clearly. Also, just as a note, not being a favourite has nothing to do with lack of quality. It's just that I adore all his witch novels!
In this one, Duke Samuel Vimes, Commander of the Ankh-Morpork City Watch, has to deal with racism between trolls and dwarfs, and vampires and werewolves, both on and off the police force. When an important dwarf appears to be murdered by a troll, Vimes has to solve the case before war breaks out. He also has to be home to read to his young son at 6:00 PM precisely, each and every day.
I'm savouring This Accident of Being Lost: Songs and Stories by Leanne Betasamosake Simpson because honestly, her writing just blows my mind! It's both a window into another way of knowing the world, and inspires me to try and find words to write about my own. It is due back at the library on Wednesday and since I'm only half way through it, I doubt I will be finished. It's a book I know I will purchase, but still want to finish first! I'm listening to Almost Home by Joan Bauer. I've started reading, with my eyes, Ellie, Engineer by Jackson Pearce. I've also begun reading The Bee Book, a DK title by numerous authors to learn more about beekeeping before the final workshop next Sunday.
I plan to start Thousand Star Hotel by Bao Phi when I'm finished This Accident of Being Lost. I'll listen to whatever comes available next. I picked up We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and didn't realize it was such a tiny book so that won't take long. I'm hoping to start Oil's Deep State: How the petroleum industry undermines democracy and stops action on global warming - in Alberta and Ottaway by Kevin Taft, but doubt I will get to it next week. In theory both of these are books for our next book club meeting.
PROGRESS ON MY READING GOALS
25 Books by Canadian Indigenous Authors 4/25 1 in process
Goodreads Reading Challenge 96/333