Great Middle Grade Reads discussion

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ARCHIVES > The Best Book I read in FEBRUARY was

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message 1: by Jemima (new)

Jemima Pett | 1282 comments Mod
Let us know about the best MG books you read in February 2016!


message 2: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl (cherylllr) I loved the concise sijo (aka shijo) in Tap Dancing on the Roof: Sijo. Kind of like haiku, but from Korea. A short, heavily & skillfully illustrated, modern, and happy collection especially for the younger end of the MG range.

I also caught up on some older books, trying to read the rest of the oeuvre of Zilpha Keatley Snyder. Of the ones I could find, my favorite was A Fabulous Creature, which is probably technically YA but, as we know, avid readers tend to read up.


message 3: by Alexander (last edited Mar 01, 2016 12:44PM) (new)

Alexander | 2 comments The Crystal of Yggdrasil is the best book I read in February. It is MG fast paced, adventurous and often humorous. An amazing adventure in a distant world where Norse Gods are alive.

I also liked The Wolf Wilder a beautiful story of friendship and love for the wolves.


message 4: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca Douglass (rdouglass) | 1668 comments Mod
As usual, when I tune in to this thread, I can't remember what I read during the month. I'll come back to this :)


message 5: by Lea Ann (new)

Lea Ann (buntingla) Hard to say. In February I finished reading Wonder and The Julian Chapter and I read Orbiting Jupiter, a book that will stay with me for a while.


message 6: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl (cherylllr) Lea, just to make sure I'm reading the blurb right, Joseph is 14, and has already fathered a child, and been to prison?


message 7: by Lori (new)

Lori (loriadversario) | 33 comments The best I read was The Stolen Chapters, the 2nd installment in the Story Thieves series. My 9 year old loves this series and I do too. It almost has the feeling of A Wrinkle in Time. At the heart it is about a girl searching for her father through time and space, except that time/space=books.


message 8: by Bella (new)

Bella | 14 comments I think that George by Alex Gino was the best book I read- an important book about a transgender girl, but also cute and charming. I also thought these books were good: The Lions of Little Rock bt Kristin Levine, Crow by Barbara Wright, and Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson.


message 9: by Ann (new)

Ann | 1 comments The best I read was Pax by Sara Pennypacker. It is sure to be another great animal classic. I also thought Some Kind of Courage was a good read.


message 10: by Lea Ann (new)

Lea Ann (buntingla) Cheryl wrote: "Lea, just to make sure I'm reading the blurb right, Joseph is 14, and has already fathered a child, and been to prison?"

Yes. That is correct. Sent to a juvenile facility for a short stint and has a baby that he's trying to find.


message 11: by Lea Ann (new)

Lea Ann (buntingla) Ann wrote: "The best I read was Pax by Sara Pennypacker. It is sure to be another great animal classic. I also thought Some Kind of Courage was a good read."

OOH, I want to read Pax! I heard about it recently at a conference and it caught my attention plus I loved the cover art. lol


message 12: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl (cherylllr) Pax, it turns out, is by the author of one of my favorite series: Sara Pennypacker also wrote Clementine. So I'll be looking for that.

And the other link is Some Kind of Courage. Intriguing title.


message 13: by Bella (new)

Bella | 14 comments Lea wrote: "Cheryl wrote: "Lea, just to make sure I'm reading the blurb right, Joseph is 14, and has already fathered a child, and been to prison?"

Yes. That is correct. Sent to a juvenile facility for a shor..."


I added Orbiting Jupiter to my TBR. I suppose, at some point, some people will try to ban this book. At first, I was taken aback by the "father at 14" thing, but when I thought back to my time as a middle school teacher, I remember that we had pregnant 6-8th graders. So...(the really repellent thing is that a lot of the fathers were older. Old enough to constitute statutory rape.)


message 14: by Lea Ann (new)

Lea Ann (buntingla) I added Orbiting Jupiter to my TBR. I suppose, at some point, some people will try to ban this book.

This story is so beautifully written, you really will feel compassion for this character. Besides, it is a reality. I teach in a K-8 school, and we've had pregnant 7th graders before (13 years old).


message 15: by Bella (new)

Bella | 14 comments Lea wrote: "I added Orbiting Jupiter to my TBR. I suppose, at some point, some people will try to ban this book.

This story is so beautifully written, you really will feel compassion for this character. Besi..."


How does your school handle books with potentially objectionable content? Our did it with different "levels" of library cards. Unrestricted- the student could borrow anything. Parental notification- anything marked mature or whatever meant the librarian called the parent for an okay on the book. And a restricted which only allowed students to borrow books without a content warning.


message 16: by Lea Ann (new)

Lea Ann (buntingla) How does your school handle books with potentially objectionable content? Our did it with different "levels" of library cards.."

I work in a K-8 school with roughly 400 students. We have a part-time librarian and a full time library aide who is really good at her job and gets to know the kids and families pretty well. We do have a small shelf for YA stuff, and younger kids are not allowed to check those out. All others are shelved, and our aide just monitors what is being checked out.

We have encountered a problem with low level AR stickers on books with mature themes. When I read something like that, I always tell our aide so she can make note of it. So far we haven't had any issues.


message 17: by Julie (new)

Julie | 20 comments The best book I read in February wasOut of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper. It is about a girl with cerebral palsy who is 11 years old and has never been able to talk because of her disability. Her mind is quite sharp, but no one knows it. Read this story to learn more about the kids some people just write off - perfect for Disability Awareness Month!


message 18: by Kate (last edited Apr 03, 2016 01:14PM) (new)

Kate (mjett5578) Yellowfang's Secret. I loved this super edition of Warriors.


message 19: by Brenda (new)

Brenda (brlemon) | 27 comments I am a school librarian and it is challenging at the MS level to find books that appeal to 8th grade students that may contain object able content not suited for 6th grade students. We do not limit the books students read or mark them in any way. But I do encourage the students to read whatever book they want - whether it comes from my library, the public library, or their home. In addition, our 8th grade English teacher has a very current classroom library that has some of the titles for 8th graders that I just felt uncomfortable having in the library and letting 6th graders read. This seems to be a winning solution at our school.


message 20: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca Douglass (rdouglass) | 1668 comments Mod
That's a good approach, Brenda. I personally have always favored letting my kids read whatever they want, but some parents want more constraints.


message 21: by Brenda (new)

Brenda (brlemon) | 27 comments It is interesting in what students will read from outside of the school library. There have been some titles that I see 6th graders reading that I personally would not allow but hey......it's not from my library and at least they are reading!

My policy has also opened up an "undercover trade" in books so to speak at both the MS and the HS making them seem more dangerous (and appealing). For example, earlier this year, I watched a high school sophomore sneakily hand his friend the next installment of the series Game of Thrones. His friend was so excited to get the book. It looked like a drug deal going down but with books and I just shook my head and laughed. Yes, I can't justify putting the books in my HS library in my very conservative area but they do have AR test and if the kid is reading.....let them read!


message 22: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca Douglass (rdouglass) | 1668 comments Mod
LOL! My boys first stumbled on Game of Thrones when they were maybe 8th and 10th grade, maybe 7th & 9th? and decided for themselves that they weren't ready. A couple years later, though, all bets were off :) We did have a conversation about some of the violence against women.

Nothing like banning a book to make it desirable. I keep looking for someone to ban my books :D It'd do my sales a world of good!


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