Well, I've had two busy weeks and the next one doesn't look to be any less so. I've been working a couple of days a week and then looking after a two year old part of the time for the rest of the week. Whoosh is that exhausting!
I hosted Poetry Friday for the first time and was very nervous. I wrote about one of my favourite local children's poets, Robert Heidbreder. I repeated some of the information about his work here. If you read that post, just skip over them here.
Clicking on the title of the book will take you to the Goodreads page of the book.
RECENT BLOG POSTS
Poetry Friday September 27, 2019
Poetry Friday October 4, 2019
This is one of my go to books when I am substitute teaching in primary grades. I've never had a group of students who didn't love it.
Told in rhyming, rollicking poetry full of onomatopoeia, it shares the shenanigans of dinosaurs late at night in a special spot near Drumheller Alberta. The typography dances and sings all over the page in unison with Bill Slavin's and Esperanca Melo's raucous artwork! Every student I've introduced this too has loved to shout out the chorus of, BOOMITY-BOOM RATTELY-CLACK THUMPITY-THUMP WACKETY-WACK.
I really need to get my own copy just in case I am ever in a library that doesn't have one.
Between the art by Qin Leng and Bob's glorious poetry, this book is a jewel. I adore the rhythm, the rhyming, and the repeating refrain. The poem builds up to a crescendo and then eases back to calm.
This book gave me shivers! It tells the story of four girls from diverse backgrounds who are best of friends. As they grow older, no matter what happens, they continue to hold each other up
Ok, I finished this and said to myself, what the heck?! I read it a couple of times and loved it more each time. The art is brilliant! Seb lives in his far north community where the sun disappears in the winter. Tired of the dark, Seb and his walrus friend set out in a rowboat to bring some sun back home.
These days with Greta Thunberg inspiring the planet to do better, Seb’s story of accomplishing the impossible feels just right.
Oh this book is so beautiful! Both the words and images are breathtaking! There are layers of meaning in it. I would love to use this book as mentor text!
Hugo and his new friend, Nogg, head off to Boone's birthday party. The few cultural misunderstandings are hilarious. Boone is crowned king for the day and commands his Sasquatch friends to return to Nogg's cavern. Nogg and his community were forced to leave it because it was haunted. Together they find out what was causing the strange occurrences. I enjoyed this sequel, but not as much as the earlier books. For starters, it didn't leave me salivating for Sasquatch treats.
Thomas King‘s rendition of these classic tales contains his trademark humour with modern touches. He makes them more appealing and relevant for today’s readers. I read the first one, Coyote Sings to the Moon, to a group of Grades three and four students. They were silently enthralled as I read it aloud and laughed in all the right places. They wanted me to read another, but we had run out of time. I read the second, Coyotes New Suit, to myself and while it was good, I think the first one was best.
This book snuck up on me. I went in not expecting much and was gobsmacked by how profound it is. I love these characters!
I loved this take on Dickens’ Christmas Carol. Set in Harlem, the charming Vanderbeeker family are being evicted from their brownstone and have to be out by December 31st. Their only hope is to win over “the Beaderman” their landlord, who lives two floors above them.
How can you not love the cover of this book? Believe it or not, the inside is even better. I’m stumped trying to come up with words to describe this novel. It blends science-fiction and indigenous mythology into a riveting mystery. The characters, all of them, including the supernatural, are convincing. The dialogue is brilliant. It’s full of heartbreak and humour.
Cole Harper returns to his hometown of Wounded Sky after being away for ten years. Shortly after he arrives, people are being murdered and a deadly virus starts killing people off. It’s up to Cole and his remaining friends to figure out what’s going on.
I can hardly wait to get to the next in the series.
This is an historical novel based on true events. It’s the story of two Jewish sisters involved in the Toronto garment strike of 1931 that lasted two months. Strikers walked the picket line during worst snowfall in 55 years.
During an altercation with strike breakers, Rose is arrested and sent to jail where she is traumatized by the abuse she experiences.
On May Day, when the strike is finally over, Emma Goldman, famous labour organizer who fought for the rights of women garment makers, speaks to the crowd. Both the girls are inspired by her.
The integration of historical photographs provide context for modern readers.
The back matter contains author notes where Dublin explains that while the strike might not have ended up making a difference in working conditions for people like Sophie and Rose, the union learned much from the experience and was able to use this knowledge to make difference later on.
It also includes short biographies of many real people mentioned in the novel.
I appreciate the historical introduction that puts the story in context. While the specifics might change, it’s a story of injustice and fear of difference retold across time.
I've never read anything by Marsha Skrypuch that wasn't riveting. She writes such authentic characters that it's a shock to finish a book and realize they are not real.
This novel is based on the true story of a Ukrainian mother and her two daughters, and their experiences during WW2. At first their community celebrated the retreat of the Russians and welcomed the arrival of the Germans. But then bit by bit, things changed and got worse and worse. I appreciate how this story of resistance and heroism introduced me to aspects of war I didn't know about. Skrypuch's attention to the details of ordinary life make it real. I especially appreciate that this is a story of how ordinary women not only survive, but become extraordinary in these kinds of circumstances.
The back matter contains information about the real Keteryna Sikorska and her daughter Krystia.
I am addicted to this series! What a brilliant character! As a general rule, I’m not a huge science fiction fan, but I’m devouring the Murderbot Diaries. This is the third in the series. Murderbot is a lethal AI with faulty programming that allows it to think for itself. It dreads the f words like friends and feelings. The books are sweetly funny in spite of being thrillers chock full of violence and mayhem. If you aren't a fan, you must go and read the first in the series. Odds are you'll be joining the rest of us addicts.
Anything by Robert Heidbreder fills your body with rhythm and makes you want to dance. This poetry memoir tells us of his summer holidays with his grandparents on their farm. It's full of magic - the kind that can only be experienced by children in a place full of wonderful animals and doting adults. There is Rexter, the talking rooster; Seed-Sack, the mule who thinks he's a horse; Ginger Tea, the dog, and Tuftin, the cat. Some of Robert's descriptions, like this one here, "inside is a bundle of purrs" made me want to swoon. Rooster Summer is a book that will make you nostalgic for a time and summer the likes of which you might never have experienced.
Madeline Kloepper's vintage style art is the perfect accompaniment to the poems in the book.
If I was still in charge of a library, I would grab up a copy of this book in a heartbeat. Maybe even two. It educates readers about many aspects and species of bats. It highlights young bat activists who work in many different ways to ensure the survival of bats. I like the layout of the pages, with plenty of captioned photographs, large titles and headings, maps, and inserts with bat facts. The back matter includes a page of information for how to help bats and another on organizations that help them. It also has a glossary and index.
I'm enjoying The Creativity Project by Colby Sharp when I am work. I'm also reading The Dinner Party by Judy Chicago and have just started After Life; Ways We Think About Death by Merrie-Ellen Wilcox. I also have Last of the Name by Rosanne Parry on the go. I'm listening to
This time I really do plan to get my Netgalley titles under control! I'm hoping to read The Very Very Far North by Dan Bar-el, What the Eagle Sees by Eldon Yellowhorn. Maybe I'll even have time to get to all the picture books!
PROGRESS ON MY READING GOALS
#MustReadNFIn2018 11/12 - one in progress
25 Books by Canadian Indigenous Authors 21/25
25 books by Canadian Authors 66/25
Big Book Reading Challenge 10/4
Goodreads Reading Challenge 314/333