The Styling Librarian

In my opinion, books are the best accessory.

Styling Librarian: What are you reading? 7/9/12

Thanks to: TeachMentorTexts for the inspiration! Thanks to Jen and Kellee for the meme!  I do so love keeping track of my reading and sharing with others each week. Personally, having this blog vs. just having a written book journal (which I still keep) and logging thoughts on Goodreads is a tremendously rewarding outlet. I am enriched connecting with other amazing bloggers and book reviewers in addition to connecting with other teacher librarians, fabulous educators, and readers from around the world!

Beep and Bah by James Burks – Really loved reading this hilarious picture book. My son loved the silliness, adventure, and simple dialogue- he read most aloud to me with robot voice. What fun. Thank you to Jen Vincent for the recommendation!! Summary from Goodreads: Beep is a robot who hungers for adventure. Bah is a goat that wants to stay out of trouble. When Bah discovers a single sock, Beep knows there’s only one thing to do: find its match! Together, Beep and Bah begin a journey that takes them over winding hills and deep into the ocean.


Alpha Oops! The Day Z Went First by Alethea Kontis, illustrated by Bob Kolar – What a fun alphabet book. Laughed all the way through the book. Goodreads Summary: Z is tired of always having to be last when the alphabet family lines up. He is demanding fair and equal treatment! The letters (more or less) agree to go backwards, but it’s not long before P has some ideas of his own. And so does H, for that matter. In fact, it seems as if almost every letter has a different opinion about how the alphabet should be arranged. It’s chaos! It’s pandemonium! And it’s definitely not as easy as A-B-C! Filled with visually humorous details, Bob Kolar’s colorful illustrations are the perfect foil for Alethea Kontis’s snappy story about the comic confusion that comes when the letters of the alphabet, like a class of unruly children, step out of order and show that each one has a mind of its own.

Bashi, Elephant Baby by Theresa Radcliffe, illustrated by John Butler – My son and I really didn’t expect the adventure and survival of the first day of an elephant baby’s life. Really cute and special. Goodreads Summary: Can Bashi find safety in time? As the sun rises over the African plain, a mother elephant and her newborn calf, Bashi, follow their herd down to the watering hole. But they are not alone, for the water has drawn some lionesses to the edge to drink and they are looking hungrily at Bashi. John Butler’s carefully researched, stunning illustrations bring to life this dramatic story of survival in Africa. “Another eye-catching presentation from the creators of Shadow the Deer…This title will attract youngsters wishing to experience the adventures of creatures in the wild”. (School Library Journal for The Snow Leopard)

One for the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt – Beautiful, fabulous, touching, fantastic realistic fiction book that I adored reading, every minute of it, even when it made me weep over decisions Carley had to make. It is a little upsetting with the main character who is abused and in a foster home she is scared to accept is a safe place. I highly recommend for students- mature 3rd and up through 8th grade.  Goodreads Summary: Carley uses humor and street smarts to keep her emotional walls high and thick. But the day she becomes a foster child, and moves in with the Murphys, she’s blindsided. This loving, bustling family shows Carley the stable family life she never thought existed, and she feels like an alien in their cookie-cutter-perfect household. Despite her resistance, the Murphys eventually show her what it feels like to belong–until her mother wants her back and Carley has to decide where and how to live. She’s not really a Murphy, but the gifts they’ve given her have opened up a new future.

Planet TAD by Tim Carvell – What a fantastic, hilarious, well written/organized book. Following the life of a middle school boy was a riot through Tim Carvell’s eyes. I loved that I could pick a journal entry and read it aloud to my husband we we could both laugh… I also loved how the storyline flowed with the character’s innovative job opportunities, fascinating and hilarious reflections on things from werewolves to St. Patrick’s Day and treasured every minute I flew through reading this most excellent book. I highly recommend to anyone who wants to laugh loads and I think it will be welcomed by any reader from 4th grade up. I’d especially recommend for those students who love Diary of a Wimpy Kid who don’t know what to read next. Goodreads Summary: Tad has an agenda: Survive seventh grade. He also wants to: grow a mustache, get girls to notice him, and do a kickflip on his skateboard. . . .  But those are not the main reasons he started a blog. Tad just has a lot of important thoughts he wants to share with the world, like: Here is the first thing I have learned about having a dog in your house: Don’t feed them nachos. Not ever.

War Horse by Michael Morpurgo – So I finally read this brilliant historical fiction book from the voice of Joey- a farm horse. I clung to the story through all the terrible twists and turns of World War I. Highly recommended read. Maybe I’ll give in and watch the movie now. Enjoyed some of the performances I watched on video for War Horse theatrical performance. Goodreads Summary: In 1914, Joey, a beautiful bay-red foal with a distinctive cross on his nose, is sold to the army and thrust into the midst of the war on the Western Front. With his officer, he charges toward the enemy, witnessing the horror of the battles in France. But even in the desolation of the trenches, Joey’s courage touches the soldiers around him and he is able to find warmth and hope. But his heart aches for Albert, the farmer’s son he left behind. Will he ever see his true master again?

Fig Pudding by Ralph Fletcher – I adored reading this realistic fiction book… every chapter was a treasure where you grew to know each character, love the family, and laugh and cry along with them through a year’s time. Such a fabulous storytelling treasure of a book. Highly recommended, grade 4 and up. Goodreads Summary: Eleven-year-old Cliff Abernathy shares his family’s trials and tribulations.

The Tiger’s Apprentice, Book One by Laurence Yep – I read this book for Hong Kong Battle of the Books and was enchanted with a story that felt quite familiar and entertaining. It has a pretty fantastical adventure with animals and other magical creatures that can shape shift and blend in with humans and a fight to save the world. I’m eager to have time to continue reading the trilogy. Goodreads Summary: From the two-time Newbery Honor author comes the first book in his new action-packed fantasy series, now in paperback, in which the life of Tom Lee changes when he meets a talking tiger named Mr. Wu.

The Prince Who Fell From the Sky by John Claude Bemis – I cannot figure out why this book was in my radar and on my TBR pile beyond that it was a new release/post-apocolyptic setting… I found the setting fascinating and the animal perspective interesting as well. Loved the fierce love and steadfast caring that Casseomae had for the human cub. BUT I found myself slowed down, confused, and thrown by the same thing I found interesting- the setting. I could not picture the character’s movements and I became confused with words thrown in at times without definition. Maybe I wasn’t in the right mood for this book. I was quite pleased with the conclusion. Goodreads Summary:

Want more book ideas and reviews? – Yes, I’m quite brief, but a prolific reader!  Please visit me at Goodreads:

http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/1941055-the-styling-librarian

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25 comments on “Styling Librarian: What are you reading? 7/9/12

  1. Linda Baie
    July 9, 2012

    Thanks for telling about all, especially those first ones. One For The Murphys is next for me, & I’d really like to find a copy of Fig Pudding. I’ve heard from others that it’s good. And I also have The Prince Who Fell From The Sky-sounds great, must read!

  2. I really need to go find One for the Murphys. Everyone seems to really like that book. I also am very intrigued by Planet Tad. I will be seeking it out. The series by Laurence Yep sounds great also.

    • The Styling Librarian
      July 9, 2012

      One for the Murphys was fantastic, beautiful, did make me cry though. I recommend Planet Tad, fantastic… I feel like I’ve neglected Laurence Yep’s work after reading that 1st book… 🙂

  3. Ms. Yingling
    July 9, 2012

    Ooh! I have One for the Murphys in my TBR pile from the library, and it sounds like one that my daughter might like as well. Something to look forward to!

    • The Styling Librarian
      July 9, 2012

      Worth enjoying, made me cry though, quite a bit. Thinking back on one poignant moment still makes me tear up…

  4. Katya
    July 9, 2012

    I was lucky enough to sit with Linda at the NESCBWI conference and she let me read the first chapter of One for the Murphys. It made such a strong impression that I immediately put it on my TBR pile. I can’t wait to get to it.

    The Tiger’s Apprentice looks really interesting…

    • The Styling Librarian
      July 9, 2012

      So very lucky, beautiful to read Linda’s webpage after reading One for the Murphys, so inspiring and supportive of other writers as well!

  5. Hannahlily
    July 9, 2012

    Such a lot of good sounding books! I’ve read War Horse and was really astounded by how good it is. Hadn’t even heard of it before the movie. I can’t wait to read One for the Murphys. I’ve heard it’s excellent but makes you cry.

  6. Lorna
    July 9, 2012

    Your picture books look like great fun. What’s your recommendation on age range for War Horse? It’s been on my TBR for a while. One For the Murphys should be in any time now at the library . . . getting my hanky ready for that one!

    • The Styling Librarian
      July 9, 2012

      I’d say War Horse would be perfect for 4th and up. Excellent war story that I found quite approachable (and also fits animal fiction…) Yes, I went through a few tissues with One for the Murphys… 🙂

  7. Tara
    July 9, 2012

    One for the Murphy’s and Fig Puddings – middle school classics! Tiger’s Apprentice is on my TBR list – but your blurb makes me want to read it soon.

    • The Styling Librarian
      July 9, 2012

      Thanks, I agree, classics w/One for the Murphy’s and Fig Pudding also would work with 4th and up… for most kids… I was quite pleased with Tiger’s Apprentice, connected me back to Jeff Stone’s 5 Ancestors series, I LOVED that series…

  8. Ms. O
    July 9, 2012

    I have used Alpha Oops as an introduction to ABC order in the library and why it’s important for finding fiction books. Kiddos like it. The Halloween-themed one is fun, too. I watched the movie War Horse already … oops. Should have read the book first! I did enjoy it, though.

    • The Styling Librarian
      July 9, 2012

      How fantastic to use Alpha Oops as ABC introduction, terrific humor one. I held myself back for a long time with War Horse movie, tempting… Sometimes it doesn’t hurt to see the movie first though! 🙂

  9. Kathryn
    July 9, 2012

    I have heard of One for the Murphy’s a number of times, I must chase it up. I read War Horse earlier in the year and loved it too. I thought the movie lacked the voice of Joey and the relationship between the two horses was not to the forefront as in the book. I had to close my eyes for some of the war scenes, but then I am not a war movie fan, never have been since I saw a movie as a kid and an Indian was shot!
    Kathryn

    • The Styling Librarian
      July 9, 2012

      Good to hear your thoughts on the movie, I’m quite curious about it. Especially since I loved Joey’s voice/point of view. I’ve been disappointed with other book-movie interpretations for that reason before…

  10. Happy dance for Beep and Bah! Love them! Such a great story. Socks are seriously the bane of my existence as a mother so I soooo!o related with the story. I’m reviewing Gabby and Gator also by James Burks tomorrow…another favorite!!! A longer story but also graphic novel style. Planet Tad looks like fun! I loved Fig Pudding, read it after Colby recommended it. He reads it every year with his class. 🙂 Happy reading@

    • The Styling Librarian
      July 10, 2012

      Very cool about Gabby and Gator- shall watch for your review! Yes, Planet Tad was quite fun. I read Fig Pudding because of Colby’s mention of it as well. 🙂

  11. I’ve heard lots of good things about Fig Pudding. Need to get on reading that one!

    AlphaOops! looks adorable! I definitely need to check that one out at the library!

    • The Styling Librarian
      July 10, 2012

      AlphaOops was quite cute, I find it AMAZING how many alphabet books there are… At my former library, we pulled over 70 specific alphabet books a year with over 25 that were my “favorites”… 🙂

  12. novalibrarymom
    July 10, 2012

    One for the Murphys is actually in my bag for vacation this week. Hopefully I’ll actually get the time to pull it out. And I’m adding Alphabet Oops to my TBR pile for myself and Preschooler. Thanks! 🙂

    • The Styling Librarian
      July 11, 2012

      Enjoy vacation time with the book, that’s how I enjoyed it. Didn’t expect to be sobbing as much as I did though! 🙂

  13. Pingback: Styling Librarian: Newbery Book Club- Adult Edition Part 1 « The Styling Librarian

  14. Pingback: Styling Librarian: Technology Resources shared August 2012 « The Styling Librarian

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