Great Books Ricki Read in 2015


top ten tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. The feature was created because The Broke and Bookish are particularly fond of lists (as are we!). Each week a new Top Ten list topic is given and bloggers can participate.

 Today’s Topic: Great Books Ricki Read in 2015

This is always the most painful list I create each year. I want to highlight a few great books, but please know that these are not the only great books I read this year. I simply couldn’t limit the list to ten books, but I did manage to narrow the list to fifteen great texts that I highly recommend. If you don’t find any books on this list interesting, PLEASE message me, and I can email you fifteen more great ones. The books are in alphabetical order by the marketed age group, but all books cross over and can be read by all ages!

Children’s (See this post for other great children’s books that I read in 2014 and 2015):

1. Emmanuel’s Dream: The True Story of Emmanuel Ofosu Yeboah by Laurie Ann Thompson


I loved the message of this book, and I think kids will really love it, too. This is a great story that is quite inspirational.

2. Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast by Josh Funk

lady pancake and Sir

This is a clever, engaging book. Readers will be impressed by the excellent writing. There are many books on my son’s shelf that we read again and again, and this is one of them.

3. Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Peña

last stop on market street

Let me count the ways I love this book. The writing is stellar. My son and I simply adore this story and read it quite often.

4. What Do You Do with an Idea? by Kobi Yamada


After I read this book, I immediately bought it as a gift for several friends. It is quite cleverly crafted and brilliantly written and illustrated.

Upper Elementary/Middle Grade

5. Circus Mirandus by Cassie Beasley

circus mirandus

This magical book will stick with me forever. I can’t wait for my son to be old enough to understand more of it when I read it aloud. He’s two now, but we might do our first reading when he is four or five, and then again and again!

6. Enchanted Air: Two Cultures, Two Wings: A Memoir by Margarita Engle

Enchanted Air

Margarita Engle’s memoir captured my heart. It made me wish I was teaching middle school. I’d love to use this book in the classroom.

7. Out of My Mind by Sharon Draper

out of my mind

I know this book wasn’t published in 2015, but I read it this year. Wow. I understand the hype now! This is a book that teaches empathy.

8. Wonderstruck by Brian Selznick


This is another book that people love that wasn’t published this year. I read it in one sitting and could not put it down. I am in awe of Selznick’s talent.

Young Adult

9. Dreaming in Indian by Lisa Charleyboy and Mary Leatherdale

dreaming in indian

This nonfiction collection of native voices (both in writing and in artwork) is absolutely stunning.

10. I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

I'll Give You the Sun

I get a bit emotional when I think about this book—not necessarily because of plot points but because I felt so connected to the characters. I plan to use this book in my methods classes for years to come.

11. More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

More Happy Than Not

I still haven’t had the courage to blog about this book because I worry I won’t do it justice. I plan to use this text in a few NCTE presentations. This book is a teacher jackpot. There is so much to discuss!

12. Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys

salt to the sea

I’ve waited and waited to share about this book. It will be published in 2016, but I can’t help but include it here because I read it in 2015! I wrote my blog post months ago, and I am so eager to share the love of this text. It is one of those drop-everything-and-read-this-book kind of texts. 🙂

13. X by Ilyasah Shabazz and Kekla Magoon


YES. Based on Malcolm X’s early life (and co-written by his daughter), this book takes a very compelling look on this eminent man in history. I loved it.


14. Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

between the world and me

I plan to blog about this book soon. I can’t stop thinking about it! I read this text in short spurts because there was so much to think about. I couldn’t stop underlining (and I don’t typically underline)!

15. Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan

Mr. Penumbra's 24 Hour Bookstore

I loved, loved this audio book. My brother and sister-in-law were looking for a book for their trip back to Maine. They got home and realized they wouldn’t have much more driving time together. So they put the cell phone in the middle of the table, sat, and listened to the rest. This is a great book—one you won’t be able to put down.

What great books have you read and loved this year?


5 thoughts on “Great Books Ricki Read in 2015”

  1. Lovely list. I still (red face) need to read I’ll Give You the Sun & Mr. Penumbra, just starting Between The World And Me. I loved Salt To The Sea, too, sad that we have to wait and wait for another by Ruth Sepetys. What what I add: in picture books, my favorite is still Lenny and Lucy. Something about it just touched me. Thanks, Ricki!

  2. Wow, what a great reading year for you!! The only one I’ve read here is Wonderstruck (loved it, too!), so I added every single book on your list (except the picture books)to my overflowing TBR list (which is edging up to 700 now – yikes). What wonderful recommendations.

    Like you, I am dreading choosing my top books for this year – I just read SO many great ones!

    Hope 2016 is filled with just as many outstanding books for you!


    Book By Book


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