Teen Book Con is coming up this spring! It will be at Alief Taylor High School on April 11, 2015! Check out the website by clicking HERE. The first book I read in preparation for this great visit was In Real Life by Cory Doctorow and Jen Wang. This is a great graphic novel of a young girl who makes a connection between the real world and the gaming world. It brought ideas and things to my mind that I would not have considered before reading. I definitely recommend this book!
Blue Willow Bookshop is a local favorite! You can find out more about their shop at their website: http://www.bluewillowbookshop.com/. They bring in great authors for the community and schools. We have the opportunity to see author Matt de la Pena on January 22, 2015 with some of our SBMS book lovers! We are very excited and thankful to have this amazing bookshop in our community. Also Blue Willow has a middle school girls book club: http://www.bluewillowbookshop.com/node/76505. Please visit their website, their store and thank them for pouring into the SBISD schools. They will also be a HUGE sponsor for Teen Book Con which will be help April 11, 2015.
Over the Christmas break, I started this book by Meg Medina. Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass won the Pura Belpre award for 2014. This award honors the first Latina librarian at the New York Public Library. I thoroughly enjoyed this book! Piddy is a young student who moves to a new school in New York and on her first day there she finds out that a girl named Yaqui Delgado wants to beat her up because of the way she walks in the hall. Being a middle school teacher for 14 years, I have seen many conflicts and sometimes fights that start with something as small as this. I can think of many students who would enjoy this book because they can relate to it from personal experience or have a friend who has gone through something similar. I give this book 5 out of 5 stars!
The other YA book I read over the break was Towering by Alex Flinn. This is a spin on Rapunzel - there's a bit of mystery, magic and adventure. I was surprised at the characters and plot, but I enjoyed it. My favorite Alex Flinn book is still Beastly!
The next book I have started is The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier. I have heard amazing things and have really enjoyed the first few chapters. I'll keep you posted on how this one goes!
The Iron Trial was at our Scholastic Book Fair in the fall and I was intrigued by the cover. I know that many people say "Don't Judge a Book By Its Cover" but honestly I do. This novel turned out to be an adventurous story that reminded me a lot of 3 spunky characters in Harry Potter. Callum, Tamara and Aaron are a trio thrown together to be trained by a mage for the war against the Evil One. Many twists and turns lead the characters through adventures, problems and challenges. If you liked Harry Potter or if you enjoy Sci-Fi/Fantasy, I would recommend this book.
Recently I have read two great books! One is by one of my favorite authors, Ally Condie. She wrote the Matched series. If you haven't read that, it is a must read! Atlantia is her newest novel and she once again created a whole new world of the Above and Below. The Above represents the Earth and the Below represents the Water. It is a beautiful story of faith, friendship, family and love. I highly recommend it.
After I finished Atlantia, I received a copy of El Deafo. CeCe Bell did an amazing job writing a graphic novel of a young girl going through her school years with hearing aids and a Phonic Ear with a "magic microphone." This novel would connect with any student or person who has ever felt different or out of place, so in my experience, that is pretty much everyone I know!
Jennifer Holm is a great author with a wide variety of talent. She can write historical fiction like Boston Jane, illustrate and write a graphic novel, Babymouse, and now write a realistic fiction with a twist of sci-fi called The Fourteenth Goldfish. Every book I have read of Ms. Holm's has been wonderful and I was not disappointed by this one!
Ellie's life is about to change in a way she cannot imagine! Her grandfather moves in with her and her mom, but only he doesn't look like her grandfather; instead he looks like a teenager! This story does a great job of weaving together tales of family and friends. I really enjoyed the scientific lessons woven throughout the book - it taught me things I did not know!
Earlier this fall, I tweeted Jennifer Mathieu to see if she would come and speak to our writing club. Well, yesterday SHE DID! It was so great. Our students had come up with great questions and we had an intimate group and were able to ask her all kinds of things. We were so excited to find out that she has a new book coming out this next summer called Devoted. Several of our girls and a mom had the chance to read The Truth About Alice (her first novel) and it was passed around quickly! I am so grateful to Jennifer for taking time out of her busy schedule to come visit us, bring us bookmarks, and answer all of our questions! You can find out more information about her at: http://www.jennifermathieu.com/.
Last weekend I made a stop at Half-Price Books in Rice Village and I found so many great treasures. They even had a clearance section with books for $1! I picked up Every Soul a Star by Wendy Mass and have really enjoyed reading it. It tells the story of three main characters and how their lives meet as they camp out together to watch the stars. It's a fun read because it alternates between different points of view. I would highly recommend it!
Our Fall Book Fair is here and boy, are we excited?! The theme is Sir Read a Lot so we made a castle, had our amazing theater teacher sew costumes and decided to have lots of fun! Today was our first day and we will be going strong until this Friday. I am very thankful for our book fair coordinator, the many parent volunteers, and our students! Check out more information and even order online at our Scholastic Book Fair Website!