It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #IMWAYR 7/23/18


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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA!

It’s Monday! What are you Reading? is a meme started by Sheila at Book Journeys and now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date. It is a great way to recap what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and to plan out your reading and reviews for the upcoming week. It’s also a great chance to see what others are reading right now…you just might discover the next “must-read” book!

Kellee and Jen, of Teach Mentor Texts, decided to give It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels, anything in the world of kidlit – join us! We love this meme and think you will, too.

We encourage everyone who participates to support the blogging community by visiting at least three of the other book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.



Tuesday: Student Voices: Top Ten Author Lists by Two of Kellee’s 2017-18 Middle School Students

Wednesday: Joining Book By Book’s Big Book Summer Challenge

Thursday: Hedgehog Needs a Hug by Jen Betton

Friday: Running on the Roof of the World by Jess Butterworth

**Click on any picture/link to view the post**



I am trying to get as much reading done as possible before school officially starts on August 6th because I know that the first month or so of school means very little reading, so I have read whenever I had a chance (and being on vacation really helped!).

  • Laurie Halse Anderson’s Vet Volunteer series is becoming a favorite! I love learning about the different animals and also getting to know each character.
  • The Epic Fail of Arturo Zamora is my summer book club choice. The book club starts today and lasts through Thursday, and we will be doing a lot of reading and some fun activities as well as virtually visiting with the author on Thursday.
  • One of my promises to my students is that I would read more Rick Riordan books. I read and loved the Percy Jackson and Red Pyramid series, so Heroes of Olympus was next. First I had to reread The Lost Hero then I could move onto the ones I hadn’t read yet.
  • Amina’s Voice is a special middle grade novel about finding your voice in the midst of hate.

  • Amal Unbound reminded me so much of Sold, and I am so happy a middle grade story like this exists. Told in conjunction with other books that share stories stories that give windows into people that may be different than us, our world is going to be such a better place!
  • I’ll be reviewing Milla Takes Charge this week!
  • Ghost Boys is another book that I think will help change this world. We must honor the Ghost Boys out there and tell this story! I may just make this the first read aloud this year!
  • I am so excited to present with David Levithan at a roundtable on complexity at NCTE about his Newest Every Day novel, so I went back to reread the first book in preparation of the rest of the series. In this reread, I found myself even more fascinated by A’s story, and I cannot wait to read the rest of the series.

  • I plan on reading the whole Every Day series, so when I saw there was a prequel short e-book for Every Day, I knew I had to read it when I was done with Every Day. I look forward to book #2 and #3 and see where A’s story goes!
  • Joseph Bruchac is on my #mustreadin2018 list, and I was so happy to see that my library had this short story available in Hoopla! I love Bruchac’s story of finding strength and overcoming bullying.

  • Twig by Aura Parker: First, make sure to check out the end pages–so great! This story is about Heidi who no one notices at first, but with the help of a teacher she learns how to be seen. Interesting to be paired with community building and an insect unit.
  • Between the Lines: How Ernie Barnes Went from the Football Field to the Art Gallery by Sandra Neil Wallace: While in Washington D.C. visiting the Museum of American Art, I saw this book and picked it up right away because I love the artist and the author. The story did not disappoint! What a fascinating look at Ernie Barnes and how he made an impact on art.
  • Henri’s Scissors by Jeanette Winter:
  • We’re reviewing The Day You Begin by Jacqueline Woodson this week. Make sure to stop by to learn more about this amazing book!

  • Twinkle Twinkle Little Star: I Know Exactly What You Are by Julia Kregenow, PhD: Written to the tune of the Twinkle, Twinkle nursery rhyme, this version builds so much astronomy knowledge along the way and is still so much fun to sing 🙂
    “Fusing atoms in your core:
    hydrogen, helium, carbon, and more.
    With such power you shine far,
    twinkle, twinkle, little star.”
    I know my future astronaut is going to LOVE this book! A wonderful way of combining the familiar with the fascinating!
  • One Snowy Day by Diana Murray: A cute counting book that focuses on snow day activities. For my preschooler who is obsessed with seeing snow and always loves counting books, I am sure he is going to love this one!
  • Little Whale by Jo Weaver: I loved the combination of a feel-good message about family & mothers mixed with the nonfiction aspect of whale migration. Oh, and the illustrations are BEAUTIFUL!!!! (Make sure to notice the tone in the final spread!)
  • I Walk with Vanessa: A Story about a Simple Act of Kindness by Kerascoët: Ricki knew I was going to like this book so much that she read it to me over Google Hangouts, and within minutes of her doing so, I had ordered it. It is going to be paired with Each Kindness on my first day.

  • Hedgehog Needs a Hug by Jen Betton: Ricki also read this to me because I haven’t been able to get it yet, and it is so wonderful! A great story mixing acceptance and animal defenses.
  • Never Satisfied: The Story of the Stonecutter by Dave Horowitz: A fun retelling of a well-known traditional story about how we are all more important than we realize.
  • Chester Nez and the Unbreakable Code: A Navajo Code Talker’s Code by Joseph Bruchac: Navajo Code Talkers should be part of common knowledge. They are heroes. And this picture book biography of Chester Nez is a wonderful introduction or enrichment of this knowledge.


I reread #NotYourPrincess: Voices of Native American Women (Edited by Lisa Charleyboy and Mary Beth Leatherdale). This collection really speaks to me, and I’ve decided to use pieces of it in my class next semester.

I also read Never Satisfied: The Story of the Stonecutter by Dave Horowitz. I laughed when I saw that Kellee read it. This happens to us quite often. I agree that it was a fun retelling.

As Kellee shared above, we had a bit of a love-fest. We read books to each other over Google Hangouts. I said, “Do you have Dreamers? I really want to read that book.” Conveniently, she did! It was everything I’d hoped for and more. 🙂

Kellee said, “Have you read What Can a Citizen Do?” I said no. She said, “I am reading it to you aloud. Hang on.” This is a great book. I don’t think there is too young of an age to teach citizenship, and this book is a wonderful resource for teachers. It’s very teachable.




  • I am currently listening to What Girls Are Made Of by Elana K. Arnold. I am more than half way through, and wow–this is like Forever for a new generation.
  • I am also currently reading The Son of Neptune. For some reason Heroes of Olympus, even though it is a great adventure, just goes slower for me than the Olympian series.
  • Trent and I are reading Peter and Ernest: A Tale of Two Sloths by Graham Annable together. I love that he is just laughing and laughing at this book.

I also have this awesome pile of graphic novels waiting for me!


My son and I are on a quest to read every book available by Sara Varon. We’ve read Odd DuckRobot Dreams, and New Shoes. If you haven’t checked out these graphic novels, they are absolutely fantastic. We reserved this one in the library and made a special trip to pick it up.

I am still reading There There by Tommy Orange. The book is very heavy, so I have been taking it a piece at a time.


Tuesday: Student Voices: Book Wishes by Ten of Kellee’s 2017-18 Middle School Students

Wednesday: The Day You Begin by Jacqueline Woodson

Thursday: Our Solar System by Arthur John L’Hommedieu

Friday: Daring Dreamers Club #1: Milla Takes Charge by Erin Soderberg


Link up below and go check out what everyone else is reading. Please support other bloggers by viewing and commenting on at least 3 other blogs. If you tweet about your Monday post, tag the tweet with #IMWAYR!

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20 thoughts on “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #IMWAYR 7/23/18”

  1. That’s awesome you’re presenting with David Levithan, Kellee! I’m super excited about that session. I guess to lead Andrew Smith’s roundtable which I am over the moon about.

    I haven’t read Amal Unbound yet but I know I need to based on all the rave reviews it’s getting.

  2. Thanks for more titles! I shared Amal Unbound today, a wonderful, but heartbreaking story. And I loved Peter & Ernest,just back from Costa Rica, but no sloths where we were, sad to say. Lots of monkeys, though! Happy Reading!

  3. I am looking forward to reading Amina’s Voice, I Walk with Vanessa, and Dreamers. I’m hearing such good things about There There — but it sounds like I need to make sure I’m in the right frame of mind before I begin reading! Also wanted to thank you, again, for What Do They Do With All That Poo. It arrived this week and I was excited to get to discuss it in today’s #imwayr post. Kids are going to LOVE this book! Have a great week, you two!

  4. I still have Amal Unbound in my TBR stack. Need to move it up ASAP. I can’t wait for The Day You Begin. Already pre-ordered and it is a strong contender for the first day read aloud for #classroombookaday. Have a great week!

  5. A bit late with comments this week (and you guys are one of the first!).

    Wow, Kellee, that’s a LOT of books – good for you! Can’t believe school starts again so soon – that’s a really short summer break. You are going to be presenting with David Levithan??? Wow! That’s amazing. And there are sequels to Every Day? I had no idea! I haven’t actually read the book yet, but I watched the movie, which was just OK but I could see the potential for the story and now want to read the book even more….and now the sequels, too!

    I;m jealous of your stack of graphic novels – I am missing them! I have been trying for months to get hold of Gina at First Second because I didn’t get their catalogs this year – but no response. I even tried contacting First Second thru Twitter – nothing. I need my GN fix!

    Ricki, I’ve been wanting to read There There – it was just chosen as the selection for a major read-along or public book club – sorry, can’t remember which group chose it! Hope you enjoy it.

    I LOVE that you two read aloud to each other long-distance – awesome!!


    2018 Big Book Summer Challenge

    • Thanks, Sue! I love having time to fit in that many books!
      Every Day is a wonderful book; I haven’t seen the movie yet, but I look forward to. I am going to wait until I’m done with the series though.

      And just FYI: Gina doesn’t work at first,second anymore, so that may be why.

      • Ah, maybe that’s the problem. She is still listed everywhere as their PR contact. Do you know who took her place? I would love an e-mail address – this is driving me crazy, as I rely on them every year for a nice juicy stack of GNs!


        (if you don’t mind, please e-mail me the name/address at jacksonde at – I might forget to check back here – thanks!)

  6. I’ve just started The Epic Fail of Arturo Zamora.
    Amina’s Voice, the Ghost Boys and #NotYourPrincess: Voices of Native American Women are all books I read and loved.
    I Walk with Vanessa is waiting for me to pick up at the library.
    Happy reading to both of you this week.


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