Saturday, May 14, 2016

Sunday Post #2

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly @ Caffeinated Book Reviewer.  It's "a chance to share news, a post to recap the past week, showcase books and things we have received and share news about what is coming up for the week on our blog."

Well, here I am with my second every Sunday post.  Yay!  I have a lot to share this week.

Reading This Week:

I only read four books this week.   I have good reasons for that, which we'll cover later.  I did finish reading April Henry's Girl Stolen to two classes.  The last few chapter are INTENSE, and my noisy 8th grade class was absolutely hollering in shock and outrage during a few of the final scenes.  I don't think this is too spoilery, since this is a YA thriller we're talking about here, but the protagonist DOES manage to fight off the bad guy and when she did so, there was this explosion of emotion in my room, and one girl's chair broke.  Crazy.  It was the rowdiest read-aloud in the history of reading aloud.  

But as for my own reading--I picked up the graphic novel of Walter Dean Myer's Monster and read it at the library.  I've recommended the book to students before, but I didn't really like it that much myself.  It is written as a screenplay, and I just struggled to get invested.  The graphic novel was terrific, though, and I must add it to my classroom library ASAP.  It has really subtle things to say about race and class and perception and guilt, and for kids who aren't quite ready to dive that deep, it also has a compelling storyline with lots of action.  

I read Six of Crows too, which is nearly 500 pages long, so should really count for two books, right?  I am such a sucker for Leigh Bardugo's covers.  In the case of Shadow and Bone, I wound up mildly disappointed in the actual story, so I never read the sequels.  But I adored Six of Crows.  Loved it.  Gobbled it up and am dying that there's a five month wait for the next one in the series.  I feel a little bit like I do about Maggie Stiefvater--can't see what all the fuss is about some of her books, but the one I did like, I LOVED.  I hope to write a review soon.

When we were at Powell's the other night, I saw that Sherman Alexie's first picture book had just come out, so I had to get it right then and there, screw the cost.  Thunder Boy Jr., beautifully illustrated by Yuyi Morales, is at once specifically Native American and open-heartedly full of any child's dreams and fears.  I love the new names he comes up with for himself, and the reasons behind them, and I love his father's solution, and the son's delight that his father recognized his trouble.

Friday night I settled in and read Shine, by Lauren Myracle.  I didn't really know what to expect (although the sticker on the front informing me that a percent of the book's profits were being donated to the Matthew Shepard Foundation was a pretty big clue), and it took me a little bit to get into it, but I ended up really liking it.  I shared some more of my thoughts on Goodreads.  

Two out of four books read this week were by authors of color, so I'm still doing well on my 50% goal for this month.  

Blogging this week:

I didn't read as much this week, but I did start blogging more regularly again.  I think the daily blogging challenge in March kind of wore me out on blogging for April, and the insane amount of reading I did in April kind of wore me out in general.  I feel like I'm more back in balance with reading and blogging now.  

Besides my inaugural Sunday Post, I wrote a discussion post about how I'd noticed that even though I was trying to intentionally read authors of color, I still didn't feel I was reading about characters of color.  I participated in this week's Top Ten Tuesday with a post about non-book related blogs I read or have read, and I had to share all about my terrific field trip to see April Henry speak.  I also got several ideas this week for blog posts to write.  I'm a "pantser," so just having the title jotted down on a draft makes me feel like I'm planning ahead.  I know I'll be able to post several times next week too.

Life this week:

Hoo boy!  There was a lot of life this week.  Monday night my daughter's choir did a fundraising event at Burgerville, so we all convened there.  Tuesday night was the field trip, so I didn't see my own children all day--they were asleep when I left and when I got home.  Wednesday was the quietest day, other than the shrieking as I wrapped up that read-aloud.  Thursday we walked up to my daughter's school for their annual art show/international evening, and then today was the carnival at my son's school.  We RAKED IN BIG TIME there.  In bingo, we won a Nike shirt for the girl and some Nike shorts for the boy.  I only mention the brand to say that these were pretty fancy bingo prizes!  Then, get this, I won the raffle for a $100 WinCo card.  (WinCo is a large, no-frills grocery store, and where we usually shop, so this is awesome.)  This family had a busy week.  We celebrated with Blizzards on the way home.  The weather has been HOT--around 90 today--and it just felt like summer.  And on Saturday, I somehow got sweet-talked into hosting two simultaneous park playdates, then letting my son's buddy come over for the night.  There's nothing like having a new kid spend the night at your home to illuminate all the ways in which your family is weird.  At least if you're the kind of person who tends to worry that ten year olds are secretly judging your housekeeping and supervision levels.  

Add into that mix--Monday afternoon I found out that a job I've been interested in had just opened up, but was closing on Wednesday.  I can't say much now, other than that I got the application in with an hour to spare, and landed an interview, scheduled for next week.  But it involves books and technology, so you KNOW I'm super excited.  It would mean leaving the district I've worked in for eight years, and walking away from my favorite teaching assignment to date, so it's a big decision--and it's an even bigger IF I get the job.

I'm going to be crazy distracted until I figure out what to present at my interview and until it's over and done.  We'll see what else I get done this week.  Hope you all have a good one!


  1. I love to hear that your class got into the reading so much. And the poor girl whose chair broke- wow they must have been into it. :) Blizzards are a great way to cool off when it's hot! Love DQ.

    Best of luck with the interview, and hope you have a great week.

  2. One girl's chair broke, hahaha, I'm dying. I love it. I love that they were so into it.

    And *only* four books?! That's more than I usually read each week!

    Congrats on the raffle win and good luck with the interview :-)

  3. It sounds like a busy week... I actually only get through 3 books most week - which I find better for reviewing as I don't get behind. Occasionally I get through four.

    Good luck with the job application.

  4. I was a weird kid in school and loved the read-alongs. Sounds like you picked a good one for your class too :) I haven't read Leigh Bardugo but I want too. I've heard so many great things about her books. Good luck on your interview!

    Here's my Sunday Post.

  5. Good luck with the job! It’s cool that your class gets so invested in the books that you read.

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

  6. Best of luck with the interview! I do believe thing work out the way they are meant to for whatever reason they are meant to work out that way for. Can't wait to hear!


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