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Showing posts from July, 2017

'17-'18 School Books

Hello Again!

I took some unexpected time off from blogging when my kids were at camp and we were on a family vacation. I truly meant to get some posts scheduled, but it just never happened. Anyway. I am back and school is about to begin again in the Painter house. Every year I like to feature the books I'm requiring my kids to read and discuss with me. (They also get plenty of choice books in between these to just read and enjoy.)

With Bit (8th Grade) I'm doing a genre study over the next two years where we will look at classic examples and tropes in several different genres. These will be supplemented by current titles she gets to choose herself.  What we are tackling this year:



Poisoned Apples is part of a larger unit we're doing on Fairy Tales with a focus on feminism. (I have my fingers crossed she will want to read Bone Gap for her novel for this. I want to talk about it with her so much!!!!) And yes, my son will also get this when he's in 8th grade


We are also goi…

Future Favorite Friday (4)

This is a feature I am starting to highlight upcoming books I'm particularly excited about. If you would like to join me, you are welcome. Please just link back to this post in your own. I've included a Mr. Linky at the bottom. Right now I'm only going to do it the 2nd Friday of the month, but I'm open to doing it more often if there is enough interest.
I don't think I need to explain my excitement for this first one. Look at that cover. LOOK AT THAT GIRL ON THE COVER. And if that doesn't convince you, read the synopsis. You should be convinced now. 

MEET KIRANMALA: INTERDIMENSIONAL DEMONSLAYER

(But she doesn’t know it yet.)

On the morning of her twelfth birthday, Kiranmala is just a regular sixth grader living in Parsippany, New Jersey… until her parents mysteriously vanish later that day and a rakkhosh demon slams through her kitchen, determined to eat her alive. Turns out there might be some truth to her parents’ fantastical stories—like how Kiranmala is a rea…

Family Game Night and Other Catastrophes

When I added Family Game Night and Other Catastrophes by Mary E. Lambert to the TBR, I did so because it looked like fun. Then I started reading it and realized it was far more serious than that. I almost set it aside for the moment because I wasn't really in the mood for serious, but Anabelle's voice compelled me and kept me going, and I'm so glad it did because this is a truly good book.

Annabelle's mother is a hoarder. The family never uses that word, but they live the reality and it's getting worse every day. When a pile of newspapers falls on Annabelle's sister Leslie at breakfast, she confesses to Annabelle that she keeps a file of newspaper clippings about dead bodies found under piles of junk. Their father finds the file and leaves for a school trip after a furious fight with an ultimatum: clean the house out or he's filing for divorce and taking the kids. Leslie, feeling as though it will be her fault if their family breaks up, does the one thing no…

An Uninterrupted View of the Sky

You know how when you read a book that opens your eyes to something you  never knew about, it can come to mean the world to you almost instantly? When it rips your heart open and makes you love the characters, it has even more impact. This is exactly what An Uninterrupted View of the Skyby Melanie Crowder is for me.

Francisco is a busy teenager in 1999 Bolivia. He is balancing school with his friends and plans for his future. Plans that do not involve University no matter how many lectures his father gives. And the fights he gets in regularly? What is he supposed do when his darker skin and indigenous heritage cause him to be a constant target for many. All Fransisco's plans for his future and his carefree present are torn from his grasp when his father is arrested and placed in prison under a drug law that allows Bolivian police to circumvent his constitutional rights. Though innocent, the family can not afford a lawyer. Now Fransisco and his sister, Pilar, are forced to live in t…

Shorter Musings (YA)

Shorter musings on some recent YA reads.

Huntedby Meagan Spooner
Meagan Spooner is definitely a talented wordsmith, but this just wasn't a right fit for me. I love "Beauty and the Beast". It is my favorite fairy tale. But what I get from the tale and what Spooner gets from it are clearly very different. The entire time I felt like I was reading about the two most selfish beings that ever breathed air, which made me less than hopeful that things would work out for them in the future. I love "Beauty and the Beast" because of the hope, redemption, and love. I just couldn't find any of that here. Spooner has an excellent writing talent, that is evident in how she constructed the story and managed to keep me reading to the end despite my growing misgivings over where it was all headed.

I Believe in a Thing Called Loveby Maureen Goo
This is pretty adorable. I don't know anything about K-dramas, but I know a lot of teens who do and will be so excited this book ex…