The Styling Librarian

In my opinion, books are the best accessory.

Styling Librarian: What are you reading? 8/6/12

Thanks to: TeachMentorTexts for the inspiration! Thanks to Jen and Kellee for the meme!  I enjoy keeping track of my reading and sharing with others each week. You know when you’re reading a book and realize you want to slow down, enjoy processing the book, take notes, and completely focus on just that book? That’s what happened this week while I read The Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller. I enjoyed every minute of the read but had a difficult time picking up any other book during the read.

The Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller – I adored reading this book. I’m looking forward to rereading various portions in the coming months. I loved reading everything that’s been running through my head for the past 15 years of teaching about testing, reading, busy-work, and integrating curriculum with children’s literature. Summary from Goodreads: Donalyn Miller says she has yet to meet a child she couldn’t turn into a reader. No matter how far behind Miller’s students might be when they reach her 6th grade classroom, they end up reading an average of 40 to 50 books a year. Miller’s unconventional approach dispenses with drills and worksheets that make reading a chore. Instead, she helps students navigate the world of literature and gives them time to read books they pick out themselves. Her love of books and teaching is both infectious and inspiring. The book includes a dynamite list of recommended “kid lit” that helps parents and teachers find the books that students really like to read.

I also read Jake and Lily by Jerry Spinelli – Jerry Spinelli is the ultimate of show-don’t-tell as a writer. So brilliant. This story had quirky twins that you follow through their alternating voices smoothly for around a few months. The twins develop their independence from one another in reflective, beautiful ways. I love how they grow to understand one another better.

Goodreads Review: Jake and Lily are twins. Even though they seem pretty different—Jake is the calm one and Lily has a temper; Lily is obsessed with trains and Jake collects cool rocks—they feel exactly the same, almost like two halves of one person. When one of them gets hurt, the other can feel it. They can communicate without words. And mysteriously, every year on their birthday, they sleepwalk to a train station in the middle of the night.

But the year they turn eleven, everything changes. Their parents announce it’s time for separate bedrooms, and Jake starts hanging out with a pack of boys on the block. Lily is devastated—not to mention really, really mad. And as she struggles to make friends and get a life apart from her twin, Jake finds himself dealing with a neighborhood bully and has to decide what kind of person he really is.

Beloved author Jerry Spinelli has written another perfectly on-target, humorous, and brilliant story about the struggles of growing up and discovering who you are.

This is a story about me, Lily.
And me, Jake.
We’re twins and we’re exactly alike.
Not exactly!
Whatever. This is a book we wrote about the summer we turned eleven and Jake ditched me.
Please. I just started hanging out with some guys in the neighborhood.
Right. So anyway, this is a book about
goobers and supergoobers
true friends

things getting built and wrecked and rebuilt
and about figuring out who we are.
We wrote this together
(sort of)
so you’ll get to see both sides of our story.
But you’ll probably agree with my side.
You always have to have the last word, don’t you?


Meet the Meerkat and Hello, Baby Beluga by Darren Lunde, illustrated by Patricia J. Wynne – My son adores this author/illustrator team with their predictable connected text and interesting facts as well. I’m so thankful for the Reading Rainbow app which is introducing my son and I to so many entertaining picture books!

I’m in the middle of Cold Cereal by Adam Rex. I’m enjoying the quirkiness and illustrations in the book. Trying my best to keep up with the story when I have to put it down and the pick it up later… hard to remember where I was at sometimes.

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

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9 comments on “Styling Librarian: What are you reading? 8/6/12

  1. I love the little picture book Meet the Meerkat. Such interesting creatures. I need to read Jake and Lily and then pass it on to my own boy/girl twins about to turn ten!

    • The Styling Librarian
      August 7, 2012

      Oh, what a perfect book to pass to twins- each would take away their own favorite portions…

  2. Beth Shaum
    August 7, 2012

    Lots of great books this week!

    Cold Cereal was interesting but definitely not my favorite Adam Rex book. That is reserved for The True Meaning of Smekday.

    • The Styling Librarian
      August 7, 2012

      I do adore The True Meaning of Smekday, this one is quite quirky! 🙂 (Still plugging my way through it, with pleasure.)

  3. Kellee Moye (@kelleemoye)
    August 7, 2012

    Adam Rex is always so quirky- I love it.
    Isn’t The Book Whisperer brilliant? I try to emulate the philosophy every day.
    I’m looking forward to Jake and Lily- I love Spinelli.

    Happy reading this week! 🙂

    • The Styling Librarian
      August 7, 2012

      Absolutely brilliant book! I agree, what a philosophy to enjoy as a daily inspiration. Personally, I am a bit hit and miss with Jerry Spinelli’s books. Loved almost all.

  4. novalibrarymom
    August 9, 2012

    I have Jake and Lilly sitting on my nightstand right now. It was one of the 5 middle grades novels I had on hold at the library…that all came in at the same time 😛 Lots of reading to do!

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

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