It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #IMWAYR 6/8/20


It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?
Sharing Picture Books, Early Readers, Middle Grade Books, and Young Adult Books for All Ages!

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly blog hop co-hosted by Unleashing Readers and Teach Mentor Texts which focuses on sharing books marketed for children and young adults. It offers opportunities to share and recommend books with each other.

The original IMWAYR, with an adult literature focus, was started by Sheila at Book Journeys and is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

We encourage you to write your own post sharing what you’re reading, link up below, leave a comment, and support other IMWAYR bloggers by visiting and commenting on at least three of the other linked blogs.

Happy reading!


Tuesday: LyricPop: A New Picture Book Series from Akashic Books with Don’t Stop, song lyrics by Christine McVie, illustrations by Nusha Ashjaee; Good Vibrations, song lyrics by Mike Love and Brian Wilson, illustrations by Paul Hoppe; We’re Not Gonna Take It, song lyrics by Dee Snider, illustrations by Margaret McCartney;  African, song lyrics by Peter Tosh, illustrations by Rachel Moss

Thursday: Camp Candlewick

Sunday:  Author Guest Post: “Why Reread?” by Dorothy A. Winsor, Author of The Wysman

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



Sorry this is so long. We did a lot of reading this week, and I wanted to share it all!

  • The Grace Year by Kim Liggett: The Grace Year says a lot about womanhood, girl on girl bullying, and societal expectations of woman. Reminded me a lot of Wilder Girls in what it was saying about woman and societal sexism with a story in a dystopian world. I had some problems with the book, but I can see why it is on teen lists and why many people love it.
  • Not My Idea: A Book About Whiteness by Anastasia Higginbotham: Before I read this with Trent, I wanted to make sure it spoke what I wanted to share with him. And I think it does a very good job of introducing White privilege to kids and shows that educating kids is the way to move forward. I will be reading this with Trent.
  • Trent read to me this week
    • It’s Shoe Time by Bryan Collier: Sometimes your pair is who is least expected. And it is also okay to go out and have some fun without your pair. Oh, and don’t worry about norms. All of these are lessons told from the point of view of shoes. Pretty darn smart!
    • Do You Like My Bike? by Norm Feuti & (not pictured) Let’s Have a Sleepover by Norm Feuti: These acorn books from Scholastic are perfect for Trent’s age and practicing reading. The stories are fun and relatable. We also love that they are early graphic novels. And Trent really likes Harry.
    • What About Worms!? by Ryan T. Higgins: The newest in the Elephant and Piggie Like Reading series and by the author of the Bruce books–a winning combination.
  • Read with Trent
    • We Are Grateful: Otsaliheliga by Traci Sorrell: What a beautiful book. It highlights modern Cherokee life through a year and all that they are grateful. The illustrations remind me of artist Carmen Lomas Garza in the truth and narrative of the depiction of life and the story teaches and honors the Cherokee story.
    • Dragons Love Tacos 1 & 2 by Adam Rubin: We added the Hoopla extension to our Roku, and Trent found these movies. Love having book movies as an option on the tv.
    • I am Enough by Grace Byers: Such an empowering message as the young girl in the story celebrates herself and the enoughness of her. The lyrics were melodic with inclusive illustrations–a beautiful picture book.
    • Mac B. Kid Spy: Mac Undercover by Mac Barnett & Rosie Revere and the Racous Riveters by Andrea Beaty: Both of our book clubs finished their books this week. Trent says they both deserve 5 stars! Both of these authors are more known for their picture books, but I recommend their chapter books, too.
    • The Patchwork Bike by Maxine Beneba Clarke: This stunning book celebrates the intuitiveness, creativity, and engineering of kids and their ability to take the best out of their situation. And man, do I love the illustrations. Please make sure to read the author and illustrator notes because they truly tie the book together.
    • Three Billy Goats Gruff by Jerry Pinkney: Jerry Pinkney knows how to craft a book! He is a genius. The illustrations are as ridiculously good as you expect, and I loved the little bit of the twist he threw in to tie in a lesson that every kid can take away.
    • Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut by Derrick Barnes: I loved this book the first time I read it (um, brilliant writing and illustrations, am I right?!), and now I am so happy to share it with Trent. I loved showing him about this young Black boy’s journey at the barbershop and the importance of it in his neighborhood. The conversation following the reading was nice because although Trent found a lot of connections with his barbershop, he had some questions about some differences. And with this one, don’t miss the author’s note either.
    • Thank You, Omu! by Oge Moran: Oh, Omu! What a kind queen, just like her name means. This book celebrates community. I find it to be a modern day Giving Tree which shows how you support someone who gives to you.
    • You Matter by Christian Robinson: We watched Christian Robinson read this on PBS Kids, and he shared that he created this book because he wants every kid to know they matter, and he did. With scarce yet lyrical text and his signature illustrations, Christian Robinson shows that no matter what, you matter.
    • Jabari Jumps by Gaia Cornwall: This was probably Trent’s favorite picture book of the week. It is about courage to try something new but also the patience it may take and the fear you may find when doing something new. And the dad’s support is THE BEST!
    • Another by Christian Robinson: A wordless picture book where an alternate dimension shows that perspective changes everything. Once again Christian Robinson’s artwork shines!
    • Mae Among the Stars by Roda Ahmed: We’ve read Rocket Says Look Up (below) quite a few times, and Trent always has me look up Mae Jemison because Rocket mentions her, so when I found out about this picture book about her as a young child, I knew Trent was going to love it, and I was right. It shows that if you dream it and work hard, you can do it! One particular part made me so mad and led to some great conversation: Mae says at school she wants to be an astronaut, and her teacher redirects her and asks her if nurse may be better. Trent and I were so mad at this! But it also gave us a chance to talk. Why did the teacher say this? That answer is a hard and long one, but he and I talked about it.
    • Harriet Gets Carried Away by Jessie Sima: Trent loved this quirky adventure tale more than me, but I did love the characters!
    • The Dreamer by Il Sung Na: When pigs fly? The pig fails many times before succeeding but doesn’t give up and eventually the pig does fly!
    • Rocket Says Look Up by Nathan Bryon: A favorite favorite favorite book of Trent’s now. Rocket knows that presence is important and that the world around her and in space is beautiful. Others won’t listen and she almost lets defeat get to her, but her brother steps up and so does the universe.
    • Maybe Something Beautiful by F. Isabel Campoy: I didn’t know this was a true story!!! Read this book for the story and the illustrations but stay for the author’s note. Rafael López and his wife started the Urban Art Trail in San Diego with just the idea to add color to their neighborhood. And man, is it beautiful! (And I’ve been chastising myself for not reading this and knowing about it before going to San Diego!)
    • Carmela Full of Wishes by Matt de la Peña: Another Christian Robinson illustrated book! A coming of age picture book mixed with sadness yet hope and a sister/brother relationship that seemed very real.
    • Poppleton Has Fun by Cynthia Rylant: This series is quite fun; we only have 2 more in the series to finish.
    • Fry Bread by Kevin Noble Maillard: Wow. Wow. Wow. What a beautifully crafted book. The topic seems so simple at first but the way that Kevin Noble Maillard delves into Native American family, traditions, art, and history is brilliant. What crafting! And Juana Martinez-Neal brings the words to life with her illustrations.
  • Will be reviewing soon: The Blue Giant by Katie Cottle & What Did the Good Night Monster Do? by Ruth Austi

To learn more about any of these books, check out my 2020 Goodreads Challenge page  or my read bookshelf on Goodreads.


I think my kids and I are reading about 6-7 books a day. I am not as good at Kellee at keeping an ongoing list. Instead I am a bit more abstract, and I sit down on Sunday nights and think, “Which books do we remember? Which stick out that I want to share?” Not a great method, I know. Sometimes, I think, “Ahh! I didn’t share that book!” I need to be more like Kellee. Here are five books that stuck out to me. If you drop down below, I have some great books I started this week!

I Am Every Good Thing by Derrick Barnes and Gordon C. James lives up to the amazingness of Crown, their award-winning past book. I loved reading this one to my kids and highly recommend it. It is masterfully done, and I will be surprised if it doesn’t garner big awards this year!

Good Night Monster by Ruth Austin is a wonderful book set (with a plush) for helping kids who are afraid of monsters at night. Kellee and I review this set next week, and I am really looking forward to sharing about how much my children loved it next week. I heard about

Spotted Tail by David Heska Wanbli Weiden at the SLJ Day of Dialogue last week and had to get it. My sons loved learning about Spotted Tail. It offers a beautiful history and the illustrations are absolutely magnificent.

Cicada by Shaun Tan. If you know Shaun Tan, this book offers the complexity of all of his books. It is quite powerful, and thinking about it makes me shiver. Its message is quite extraordinary.

What About Worms? by Ryan T. Higgins and Mo Willems. Kellee mentioned this book above, and we just got it. My boys are genuinely obsessed with it. Whatever floor they are on, this book is on it. They think it is hysterical.



  • Reading: Not sure yet!
  • Listening: Tornado Brain by Cat Patrick
  • Reading with Trent: Not sure yet!


I am bouncing between three books in different parts in my house (a book for every room). All are amazingly good. I am sure you’ve heard of them, but I don’t think they can be shared enough. How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi. This is My America by Kim Johnson. Stamped by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi. I cannot wait to share more. In fact, I am going to head on upstairs to read more right now.


Tuesday: Black Live Matter: Anti-Racist Resources

Sunday: Student Voices: Top 20 Favorite Books by Aneesah F. and Jordan K., 8th Grade


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!

 Signature andRickiSig

4 thoughts on “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #IMWAYR 6/8/20”

  1. Kellee~ I’m always so impressed with your arsenal of picture books. WOW! I don’t know why I haven’t yet read Fry Bread, but I just put a request in for it — so hopefully before July. YAY! Thank you, again, for telling me about Tornado Brain!!

    Ricki~ I am so excited about What About Worms? I checked my three libraries and we don’t have it, yet. But from everything I’ve heard, we should just order a home copy of it. And I’m currently trying to decide on which Kendi book to start in June. We are so lucky to have the access to this arsenal of antiracism books.

    • Thank you for the kind words, Shaye! I have a wonderful library that I can dive into, and I probably spend too much money on PBs ;-D

  2. Wow Kellee, you and Trent read some fabulous books this weeK! (BTW, I love love love watching him do his martial arts routines)
    Ricki, I’m now interested in What About Worms? Will it be ok for three year olds?


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