I don't cry at books. It's happened only a couple of times. I'm much more likely to cry at television or movies, mostly because of the added manipulatI don't cry at books. It's happened only a couple of times. I'm much more likely to cry at television or movies, mostly because of the added manipulation of the music and cinematography. For a book to elicit such a reaction, it has to be darn powerful.
From the goodreads summary:
"Twelve-year-old Marlee doesn't have many friends until she meets Liz, the new girl at school. Liz is bold and brave, and always knows the right thing to say, especially to Sally, the resident mean girl. Liz even helps Marlee overcome her greatest fear - speaking, which Marlee never does outside her family.
But then Liz is gone, replaced by the rumor that she was a Negro girl passing as white. But Marlee decides that doesn't matter. Liz is her best friend. And to stay friends, Marlee and Liz are willing to take on integration and the dangers their friendship could bring to both their families."
This is a book, above all, about ethical courage, a topic that is near and dear to my heart. It is a book about speaking up for what you believe in and what is right. It is a book about taking risks, being true to one's self, and finding one's place in the world.
I loved that the author, Kristin Levine, was brave enough to use accurate language in this historical novel. I've called out other authors for dropping the ball on this issue, and I appreciate that Kristin used the accurate terms and epithets, not because I like those terms, but because using them is important to the story, and the cumulative effect of those terms and this narrative is what, ultimately, had me crying at various points in the story.
This story isn't only important when studying history, but in this time of "binders full of women", it also serves as a springboard to talk about who is qualified or entitled to do what, and why. Marlee is a whiz at math, and wants to grow up to build rockets (which reminded me of the most excellent play ...more
Fans of Grumpy Bird will love the Tankard illustrations in this new picture book, which easily pairs with classics such as Head to Toe, I Went WalkingFans of Grumpy Bird will love the Tankard illustrations in this new picture book, which easily pairs with classics such as Head to Toe, I Went Walking, Brown Bear Brown Bear, or Walking in the Jungle. The bold illustrations and clear, dynamic text make this book perfect for storytime. ...more
I recently pulled this book back out and read it aloud during a stuffed animal sleepover program, for no real reason other than I wanted to and its quI recently pulled this book back out and read it aloud during a stuffed animal sleepover program, for no real reason other than I wanted to and its quiet, slyly funny tone seemed to fit the tenor of the program. I usually gravitate towards louder, brasher, more animated read alouds for story time, but I really enjoyed the challenge of getting the kids engaged in this quieter story. It wasn't difficult at all, except for the one child who kept screaming "It's DEAD!" any time he saw Beegu sleeping.
This gently humorous tale of an alien who has crash landed on earth and is looking for friendship is a great addition to any evening storytime, or in a friendship storytime as well. ...more
This book was fascinating, illuminating, and really gave me insight into how my own creativity happens. I read it in tandem with Quiet, and as pair, tThis book was fascinating, illuminating, and really gave me insight into how my own creativity happens. I read it in tandem with Quiet, and as pair, the books work very well together--if you happen to be a creative introvert. ...more
I don't summarize worth a dang, so if you need a summary, find it here. First up, this cover--this cover, people! On the whole, I think that these dayI don't summarize worth a dang, so if you need a summary, find it here. First up, this cover--this cover, people! On the whole, I think that these days middle grade and chapter books get the better covers--illustrations, significant objects, great color schemes--while YA has become a wasteland of severed heads, torsos, and wickedly photo-shopped faces. But Woolston's Morris Award Winning novel avoids that sad fate, and has a cover--and back cover--design that give the reader a huge, satisfying clue about what is in store when they begin reading, which is the whole purpose of having a book cover in the first place.
I've had this book since I picked it up at ALA following the YA Author Coffee Klatch. Blythe was one of the authors that came to my table and talking with her was really a joy. She was thoughtful, modest, excited, and a steadfast lover of libraries, librarians, and storytelling. In our packet was a note that we could get a free signed copy of her book at the Carolrhoda Lab booth, so following the breakfast I made that my first stop.
I read most of this book while at ALA, mostly before I went to sleep at night, and then finished it on the train ride back home to Chicago. As the cover promised, this book is visceral yet clinical, detached and engaging, tugging equally at your mind and your heart.
I love this book, you guys. I love it because it both filled and created a whole in my heart. I love it because Loa is me, and I am Loa, and Loa is a direct descendant of Meg Murray (sex drive and all--do you realize how many kids Meg Murray O'Keefe ended up having? A LOT And can you blame her, being married to Calvin?? NO, you CAN'T, so don't even TRY). I love it because it has a family that is lower/middle/working class, a family that makes hard decisions and yet can still get excited about finally living at an address where you can get pizza delivered.
For fans of: Madeline L'Engle's Time novels, the ballroom sequence in Labyrinth, Blankets by Craig Thompson, Trespasser's William, walking fast on a cold day so your nose runs and your eyes sting, handwritten letters, agape love, and
Blue Plate Special by Michelle D. Kwasney. ...more
This is storytime GOLD. The story is sly, witty, a bit dark--it reminded me a bit of a gentler Edward Gorey. Perfect for tandem reading if you have aThis is storytime GOLD. The story is sly, witty, a bit dark--it reminded me a bit of a gentler Edward Gorey. Perfect for tandem reading if you have a storytime partner. ...more