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The War that Saved My Life (The War That Saved My Life #1)
4.42
it was amazing
Call me dumpling, if this isn't a Newbery contender for 2016. The historical details, character development, tight plot, and rich layered themes make ...more
May 06, 2015
May 05, 2015
 
The School for Good and Evil (The School for Good and Evil, #1)
4.00
it was ok
"Now I see why you two are friends," the prince says to the main characters Sophie and Agatha.

But... wait! I want to raise my hand and ask, "Tell me w
...more
Jul 18, 2013
Jul 18, 2013
 
Mistakes Were Made (Timmy Failure, #1)
3.85
really liked it
In English classes, teachers often have lessons where students examine the reliability of a character's voice. Some tell the truth and some don't. Huc ...more
Nov 17, 2013
Nov 16, 2013
 
The Boy on the Wooden Box
4.34
it was amazing
Finding excellent introductory books on the Holocaust for young readers is not as easy as it sounds even with the plethora of choices. More often than ...more
May 30, 2014
May 30, 2014
 
Paperboy
3.94
it was amazing
Writing for me is like stuttering for Victor. Most of the time I feel lonely and isolated and I'm trying every trick I can to spit out the right words ...more
Jul 31, 2013
Jul 31, 2013
 
Who Could That Be at This Hour? (All the Wrong Questions, #1)
3.83
really liked it
You getting this all right, son, or am I goin' too fast for ya? Oops. Wrong character. That's hard-boiled detective Sam Spade. Thirteen-year-old Lemon ...more
Dec 20, 2012
Dec 19, 2012
 
The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom (The League of Princes, #1)
4.04
really liked it
Looney Tunes meets the League of Princes Charming (and that isn't a typo). This book reminded me of the cartoons I grew up with the slapstick characte ...more
Dec 28, 2012
Dec 26, 2012
 
Killing Floor (Jack Reacher, #1)
4.04
really liked it
I used to peel through adult hard-boiled detective stories like oranges before entering the children's lit world. Now my hard-boiled detectives come i ...more
Sep 03, 2012
Sep 02, 2012
 
Reality is Broken: Why Games Make us Better and How They Can Change the World
3.81
it was amazing
I"m not a gamer, but I am a player of games from sports to board games to game-format lessons for students. Games are fun. Games are motivating. Games ...more
Jan 06, 2015
Jan 05, 2015
 
Tuesdays at the Castle (Castle Glower, #1)
4.08
really liked it
When I was 10 my dad had me help him sheetrock the basement ceiling. He piled three phone books on the tallest chair in the house, told me to scramble ...more
Sep 09, 2012
Sep 08, 2012
 
Raymie Nightingale
3.92
it was amazing
This is my first pick of a Newbery contender book for 2017. Kate DiCamillo's crafting of stories is brilliant and this one will not disappoint fans. H ...more
May 19, 2016
May 18, 2016
 
Fish in a Tree
4.28
really liked it
I read oodles of books. Always have. Always will. Sure wish these blogs were around when I was growing up in the age of typewriters. My reading experi ...more
Apr 30, 2015
Apr 29, 2015
 
A Tangle of Knots
3.95
really liked it
I have a Talent for burning food into unrecognizable rock-like chunks that Ker-plunk when tossed into the garbage can. The people of Poughkeepsie eith ...more
Jun 06, 2013
Jun 06, 2013
 
Dare to Disappoint: Growing Up in Turkey
4.14
it was amazing
This graphic novel is well done, but I'll have to send it up to the middle school library as it is too young adult for elementary students. Ozge Saman ...more
May 30, 2016
May 29, 2016
 
Jim the Boy
3.81
really liked it
I'm a fraud. I write children's book reviews and I'm an adult. In an ideal world children would write books for children, as well as, review those boo ...more
Mar 24, 2013
Mar 24, 2013
 
Doll Bones
3.70
it was amazing
My best friend, Ginny, and I would sneak into the storm sewer system that emptied into the nature center bordering our adjacent backyards, huddle arou ...more
Jun 12, 2013
Jun 12, 2013
 
The Kitchen House
4.17
liked it
Lavinia tells most of this story and she is a meek, gentle soul. On her way from Ireland, Lavinia is orphaned on a ship and the Captain takes her to h ...more
Jun 10, 2012
Jun 10, 2012
 
The Skull Mantra (Inspector Shan, #1)
4.00
it was amazing
What a mystery masterpiece! I would recommend keeping notes on the different Tibetan sects such as ragyapa's, purbas, and so on; plus, the complex Tib ...more
Mar 31, 2013
Mar 31, 2013
 
The Vengekeep Prophecies
3.98
it was amazing
Generations of klutzes run in my family. Grandma is infamous for throwing chicken grease into the furnace and causing an explosion that fried off her ...more
Dec 02, 2012
Nov 30, 2012
 
One Came Home
3.83
it was amazing
You can smell and taste Timberlake's sentences like beef bourguignon drenched in a saporous burgundy wine sauce. That's a mouthful, no? I've never use ...more
May 05, 2013
May 04, 2013
 
Black Flags: The Rise of ISIS
4.35
it was amazing
My extended essay students are writing papers on terrorism and I know little on the subject. This book gives excellent background knowledge on the ris ...more
Dec 13, 2016
Dec 13, 2016
 
Titanic: Voices From the Disaster
4.02
it was amazing
I grew up in the Land of 10,000 Frozen Lakes. In Minnesota, it oozes cold. I thought I KNEW cold. But I found out I didn't when I decided to jump off ...more
Sep 30, 2012
Sep 30, 2012
 
The Wright Brothers
4.16
it was amazing
On a date with my husband 33 years ago we went cross country skiing at a challenging and hilly course. He had skied the Birkebeiner in Wisconsin and w ...more
Jul 31, 2016
Jul 30, 2016
 
Marty McGuire  (Marty McGuire #1)
4.02
it was amazing
Ask any 3rd grade teacher. Ask any librarian. Ask any publisher. There are not enough books for readers who are just starting to read longer chapter b ...more
Mar 03, 2012
Mar 03, 2012
 
Laughing at My Nightmare
4.04
it was ok
Twenty-one year old Shane Burcaw's acerbic, raunchy, cussing look at life from a person with a debilitating disease, is written to teenagers with an a ...more
Jun 02, 2015
Jun 01, 2015
 
Destiny, Rewritten
3.82
really liked it
Historically, the romance novel has had a bad rap. I've seen a few English teachers use the genre for target practice; a bullseye of their derision. M ...more
Jul 24, 2013
Jul 24, 2013
 
Goblin Secrets (Zombay, #1)
3.54
really liked it
I struggled with this National Book Award winner. Not because it lacks originality. The creepy steampunk setting with gear-transformed people, witches ...more
Dec 06, 2012
Dec 05, 2012
 
The Sellout
3.80
it was amazing
A dense, award-winning book that relentlessly satires cultural identity, politics, philosophy, pop culture, etc. Paul Beatty goes all-out in a rapid-f ...more
Nov 22, 2016
Nov 22, 2016
 
Starry River of the Sky
4.08
it was amazing
Taiwanese workers have been fixing the leaking hot water pipes in our apartment. Custom is to not wear shoes inside apartments, but I cringe thinking ...more
Nov 05, 2012
Nov 03, 2012
 
Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race
3.93
really liked it
A well-documented book with great information, but the author's tendency to break up stories with subplots was clunky at times and slowed the pacing. ...more
Apr 19, 2017
Apr 19, 2017
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