Saturday, October 15, 2016

Sunday Post #16

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."

Reading This Week:

I should just accept that this is a bi-weekly feature at best.  As such, this is an update of what I've read in October, since my September check-in.  

I've read nine books in that time, give or take.

  • The Third Twin by CJ Omolulu.  3/5 stars for this YA thriller that didn't quite live up to its potential, which is usually true of YA thrillers
  • Hidden: A Child's Story of the Holocaust by 
  • One Plus One by Jojo Moyes. 4/5 stars for a delightful audio book.  A really terrific blend of lovable characters, ridiculous situations, and genuine emotion.  Plus a certain Bernie Sanders vibe that I was really digging.
  • Humans of New York: Stories by Brandon Stanton.  I feel like a cheater counting this, given that I read it in a New York minute (get it?).  It's fascinating, yet I couldn't help noticing that Stanton's humans all seem to be either a) colorful eccentrics, b) fabulously wealthy, or c) heart-breakingly berift.  Then again, when I find myself saying, "Oooh, people like me aren't well-represented!" it's possibly not a bad thing, right, given that people like me tend to hog representation.  4/5 stars
  • A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.  3/5 stars for my first ever novel-length original Sherlock.  I read it via the Serial Reader app, a bit at a time, and BOY was I confused when the action inexplicably switched to the Mormon migration.  
  • Ex Machina, volumes 1-3 by Brian K. Vaughan.  3.5/5 stars for another terrific sci fi comic series from Vaughan, who's the only comics writer I read.  Set in an alternate reality where a human-turned-superhero (like Spiderman) managed to keep the second tower safe on 9/11. 

  • Last Seen Leaving by Caleb Roehrig.  4/5 stars for this surprisingly thrilling YA thriller.  Remember my comment about those?  Roehrig avoids that sense of "this might have been good if the author let loose for an adult audience," in part by pushing some boundaries, and in part by terrific characterization and narrative voice.  I still need to write a post about the author panel I saw him on last week, but he did say that as a mystery lover, he was always frustrated  that gay people either didn't exist, or were the victims, so he wanted to write a book where "someone like me was the hero."  He sure succeeds here!
  • Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson. 4.5/5 stars and one of those "Why did I wait so long to read this?" experiences.  I loved the story, and the intense nostalgia I realized I have for pioneer stories inspired me to write one of my rare, rambling reviews.  I started listening to this on audio but finished the majority of it with a hard copy, because I was too into it to wait.  
  • The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly by Stephanie Oakes.  4/5 stars for this book that has some really disturbing parts balanced with some beautiful stuff.  It definitely reads like a debut to me, but I'm looking forward to seeing what Oakes develops into.  
I still have The Jungle Book on Serial Reader, am reading Orbiting Jupiter to my classes as part of Global Read-Aloud, and am working my way through The View from the Cheap Seats an essay or two at a time.

In my great weakness, I bought a book for each of my kids as well as my own copy of Orbiting Jupiter, and Notice and Note, a reading teacher book the library demanded back before I'd gotten further than two chapters of note-taking into it.  Plus library books and books bought for my classroom, of course.  I have to get better about reading from my classroom library; I got all those awesome new books and can't do them justice in terms of pushing them on kids until I've read them too!

Blogging this week:

I've only written seven posts since I last summarized.  I'm still working out the timing for blog writing this year.  In my defense, I've also been focusing on visiting other blogs a bit more.  I think I started slacking on that as the school year was getting started, and I noticed a complete drop-off in comments on my blog.  If it weren't for Nicole and AJ, I'd suspect I'm talking to myself.  

I've also been messing around with blog set-up and graphics a little bit.  Nothing drastic, just trying to get a better handle on things.  

Life this week:

The first thing that pops into mind is that Monday morning, another teacher stuck her head into my classroom and said, "Don't send anyone out of the room right now--we're having a leak out in the hall."  I didn't think too much of it, other than to wonder if that was code for someone wetting their pants.  About five minutes later my principal stuck his head in and said, "Sorry, but we have to evacuate this hall to the library right now."  As we started towards the door, kids started squawking, "There's water! It's coming in!"  Long story somewhat short, a pipe had bust, a drain was clogged, and our entire hallways (8 rooms) had water flowing in.  Not deep at all, since it was over such a large area, so nothing was damaged except the carpets by the doorways at either end of the hall, which now REEK like a wet dog that rolled in something nasty.  And I got to teach in the library all day, which was...challenging.  But not terrible.  

Otherwise, I had an evening out with a friend, went to two different trainings for work (both of which were better than I'd expected), and drank ever more coffee to deal with the gloominess of autumn.  Oh, and started watching Miss Fisher's Mysteries, which are gloriously fun.  


  1. I love Minnow Bly. It’s about religious craziness, so of course I’d love it. I was slightly less thrilled with Walk on Earth a Stranger. I wanted more magic. Sorry about having to teach in the library. When I was in high school, a pipe froze and burst, and they just made us walk on the squishy carpet. I guess they fixed the pipe before school started, but it was really wet in the hallways.

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

  2. Wow pipe burst huh? Glad it wasn't TOO bad. Although I imagine teaching in the library would be tough, given the different surroundings.

    One Plus One looks good!

    I watched the first Miss Fisher's on a blogger recommendation and thought it was quite good. I'll probably watch more at some point, I have so many shows going now. Sigh.

  3. I've only read one JoJo Moyes book, (Me Before You) but One Plus One has always been on my radar.


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