December 31, 2009

Last Reading Challenge: 10 in 10 Chick Lit Challenge

Co-hosted by YA author Kay Cassidy and teen book blogger Jessica (, the 10 in ‘10 Teen Chick Lit Challenge is your chance to read some fabulous teen chick lit books with other chick lit fans. The challenge runs from January 1, 2010 through December 31, 2010. Here’s how to play:

1) Grab the official 10 in ‘10 Teen Chick Lit Challenge logo above and put it on your site with a link back to this page to let people know you’re playing.

2) Choose 10 teen chick lit books to read in 2010. Or select the ones you know you want to read and leave the rest of your list open to see what comes your way in 2010. (We’ll be talking about the great teen chick lit books we’ve read each month, so you may find some new ones that catch your eye!)

To get the full story go on the challenge click here to be taken to Kay Cassidy's post about it.  - HINT HINT, there will be prizes linked to this challenge :)

Why I'm doing this challenge
About a month ago one of my students asked for help looking for a new book to read.  She said she didn't want any of that "fake" stuff.  She wanted to story to be possible.  So basically no witches, werewolves, fairies, magic, vampires, shape shifters etc! I began looking through my classroom library and a huge realization hit me - my classroom library and my own reading severely lacked realistic "chick lit" fiction.  When I saw this challenge I knew it was the perfect way to get more of this type of book into my reading "diet". 

Here are the 10 books I plan to read but I can change if new books come up:

Cracked Up to Be by Courtney Summers
I'd Tell You I'd Love You but then I'd Have to Kill You by Ally Carter
Leaving Paradise by Simone Elkeles
Just Listen by Sarah Dessen
Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
The Sky Always Hears Me and the Hills Don't Mind by Kirstin Cronn-Mills
Sweethearts by Sara Zarr
Willow by Julia Hoban
When It Happens by Susane Colasansti
Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles

Thinking on Thursday Dec 31 - Top 10 Books Read This Year

My Top Ten Books of the Year

These are the top ten books I read this year. They aren’t books that came out this year – just books that I read. They aren't in any order.  For each book I’ll give a 1-2 sentence “capture” of my thoughts about it.  If I reviewed to spotlighted the book, I'll link to it.

1. When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead: The gasp I gave when everything clicked into place. Amazingly crafted.

2. Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer: Never again with I take for granted having running water. Stuck with me for weeks.

3. The Dead and the Gone by Susan Beth Pfeffer: Body shopping to survive in New York.

4. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins: As good as everyone said it was!

5. Midnighter Series by Scott Westerfeld: So he can write books just as good as, if not better than, the Uglies series.

6. Savvy by Ingred Law: Tattoos that talk and watching a young girl grow up – just lovely

7. Vladimir Tod Series: A vampire that isn’t perfect or drop dead gorgous. Finally one I can really cheer for!

8. Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech: I knew I’d cry for one event. The second one really got me!

9. The Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt: Shakespeare as seen through the eyes of a 12 year old – laughed and cried.

10. The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan: One thing after another - barely time to breath

December 30, 2009

Flashback Challenge!

First and update on the Holiday Break reading Challenge I'm participating in.  As of today I have fnished 5 books (the 5th being The Adoration of Jenna Fox)! My goal was five, so I've made my goal!!!

Now to more year-round challenges. I've already signed up to do the 2010 Debut Author Challenge run by The Story Siren, but there is one more I want to do for sure.  It's the Flashback Challenge at Book Lust.   Here's what the challenge is (from the Book Lust site)

The Flashback Challenge will run from January 1, 2010 - December 31, 2010. If you're super-excited and want to reread a book before that, feel free, and let me know. If many people do so, then I'll do a December challenge linky post and you can all link to it here. Otherwise, we can hold them over to January.

You can sign up for the following levels:
Bookworm - Up to three books
Scholar - Four to six books
Literati - Over six books

Within these levels, we have mini-challenges! These are:
1. Re-read a favorite book from your childhood
2. Re-read a book assigned to you in high school
3. Re-read a book you loved as an adult

Thus, if you sign up for the Bookworm level, you could ostensibly choose to read one book from each mini-challenge. Or you could choose to do none of the above (though, granted, not sure what you could have possibly read that does not fit into either childhood, high school or adulthood).

Also, would just like to make clear that this isn't specifically limited to books you loved reading previously and want to reread. It could also be a book you don't remember enjoying. Or just don't remember reading. It might be interesting to see how your perceptions may have changed.

Here is my plan:

I'm going for Bookworm: At least 3 books and filling each mini challenge category.
1. Re-read a favorite book from your childhood: The Cricket of Time Square

2. Re-read a book assigned to you in high school: Either Red Badge of Courage or The Jungle
3. Re-read a book you loved as an adult: Harry Potter bok 7 - I missed so much of this book because I read it about 5 weeks after my youngest was born, so I was trying to sqeeze it in during his sleeping!

New Year Read-a-Thon

I've been debating the New Year Read-A-Thon for awhile and at the last minute I've decided to participate! Here's the info from the Bookworming in the 21st Century site:

Now, what is the Read-a-thon all about? Promoting reading in the new year - 2010!

Starts: 5 pm on Thursday, December 31st
Ends: 10 pm on Sunday, January 3rd

You can read as little or as much as you want! Also, I'm planning on having a smaller event called Reading Into the New Year - where us bookworms can read as it turns midnight! I will be posting the sign up for that event next. Please partake in either or both!!!

With 3 kids, a husband and my sister all in the house with me getting time to read can be hard.  I didn't know if I could get any length of hours in for a read-a-thon. I finally decided to give it a shot! So here's my goal:

6 Hours! YIKES!!!!
I also plan to Read Into the New Year which means I'll be reading at midnight. 

December 29, 2009

Long Needed Awards Post!

Ok in the past month I have gotten several awards.  I have been very honored to receive these awards, but I stink big time at acknowledging them and passing them on.  So, finally I am doing just that! 

Up First:

One Lovely Blog Award

I got this from two people
Miss Remmers at Miss Remmers Review
Love her blog.  She shares the same mission as me - getting kids to read more!

Here are the rules of the "One Lovely Blog Award": Accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person who has granted the award, and his or her blog link. Pass the award to 10 other blogs that you’ve newly discovered. Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award.

Given to:

Next Award: The Circle of Friends Award

For this award I must mention 5 things I love:
1. Books (duh right)
2. Watching my 3 children play together
3. Snow Days - I'm a teacher :)
4. Talking to 7th graders
5. Dark chocolate with coffee

Then pass it on to 5 fellow bloggers:

Lastly: The Honest Scrap Award

I was awarded it from Lisa at A Life Bound by Books!

You have to list 10 honest things about yourself and then pass it on to 10 other honest bloggers.

My ten Things:
1. I've had breast cancer
2. I've had open heart surgery
3. I love my job teaching 7th graders - most days - some days I do think about what else I could do
4. I loved Twilight but I hate all the hype that followed.
5. I am hopelessly addicted to dark chocolate and Tootsie Rolls
6. I hate winter - hate it!
7. My heart speeds up when I enter a bookstore.
8. I love office/school supplies. I think it's one of the reasons I'm a teacher!
9.  If I could completely change careers I'd be a forensic pathologist.
10. I lose my keys all the time!

Passed on to:

Holiday Break Reading Challenge Activity #12

Here's what our challenge was for today:

Think back on all the books you've read dealing with animals. What are your favorites. You can choose one or more than one. It doesn't matter to me. BUT, please make these REAL animals. No werewolves or other fantastical creatures.

This was an easy one, because I talked about it in an earlier challenge.  That book would be:

Because of Winn Dixie by Kate DiCamillo

From Goodreads:

Because of Winn-Dixie, a big, ugly, happy dog, 10-year-old Opal learns 10 things about her long-gone mother from her preacher father. Because of Winn-Dixie, Opal makes new friends among the somewhat unusual residents of her new hometown, Naomi, Florida. Because of Winn-Dixie, Opal begins to find her place in the world and let go of some of the sadness left by her mother's abandonment seven years earlier.

With her newly adopted, goofy pooch at her side, Opal explores her bittersweet world and learns to listen to other people's lives. This warm and winning book hosts an unforgettable cast of characters, including a librarian who fought off a bear with a copy of War and Peace, an ex-con pet-store clerk who plays sweet music to his animal charges, and the neighborhood "witch," a nearly blind woman who sees with her heart.

This book is so quietly sweet.  I loved Opal.  The relastionship between her and her daddy (The Preacher she calls him) starts of more distant, but it's brought together by the sweetest dog ever - Winn Dixie.  I read this aloud to my students several times.  They loved it even though it wasn't an action packed plot - they saw things in it that I had missed.  If you haven't read this book you must.

Click here to see what other people in the challenge had to say!

Tween Tuesday Dec 29

Tween Tuesday was started over at Green Bean Teen Queen as away to hightlight awesome books for the 9-12 year old set. AKA Tweens.

This week I'm featuring:

Al Capone Does My Shirts and Al Capone Shines My Shoes by Gennifer Choldenko

From Goodreads:
Murderers, mob bosses, and convicts . . . these guys are not your average neighbors. Unless you live on Alcatraz. It’s 1935 and twelve-year-old Moose Flanagan and his family have just moved to the infamous island that’s home to criminals like notorious escapee Roy Gardner, Machine Gun Kelly, and of course, Al Capone. Now Moose has to try to fit in at his new school, avoid getting caught up in one of the warden’s daughter’s countless plots, and keep an eye on his sister Natalie, who’s not like other kids. All Moose wants to do is protect Natalie, live up to his parents’ expectations, and stay out of trouble. But on Alcatraz, trouble is never very far away.

I read the first one several years ago and LOVED it.  Moose is a great character, and you can competely relate to him and the struggle he has dealing with a sister with autism.  I also liked how it dealt with autism, but in a setting where little was known. 
I haven't read the sequel yet, but it is on my TBR list!

They love the idea of living on Alcatraz island while it was actually a prison.

They'll learn what it's like for kids to have a sibling with a disability and how to treat kids with disabilities.

December 28, 2009

Monday Reading Merriment Dec 28

This is a weekly meme inspired by one started by J. Kaye's Book Blog. Each week on Monday we tell what we read the previous week and what we plan to read in the upcoming week. I like to put a spin on it to also look at various other reading events happening this week.

This past week I finished:
Lockdown by Walter Dean Myers
The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
The Line by Teri Hall

Look for reviews soon!

I have started: The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson.  I've heard tons of great stuff about this book, so I'm excited to finally get it started.  I want to give a shout out to Karin for hosting and organizing the Holiday Break Reading Challenge. It's really pushed me to make sure I'm reading. 

New books coming out this week:

Tangled by Carolyn Mackler
Jena, Dakota, Skye, and Owen are all at Paradise—the resort in the Caribbean, that is—for different reasons, but in Paradise their lives become tangled together in ways none of them can predict. Over the course of four months, through four voices and four stories, what happened in Paradise will change them all.

In this extraordinary novel, the Printz Honor–winning author brings us her most accomplished work yet. Tangled is a story of the secrets we keep, the risks we take, and the things we do for love.

Sounds pretty good doesn't it!

Some good contests to enter:

Chloe Neill is giving away a Tiffany and Co necklace to celebrate the release of Firespell which is coming out January 5th.  Go here to enter.  Ends Dec 31st.

The Book Butterfly is giving away a book I'm sooooooo excited for This World We Live In by Susan Beth Pfeffer. Ends January 1.

The Bookologist is giving away three different boxes of books being released in 2010!  You must enter! End January 31st.

Don't forget my giveaways both ending Dec 31
The Dark Divine
Explorer X-Alpha

Review: The Dark Divine

Title: The Dark Divine
Author: Bree Despain
Publisher: Egmont USA

From Goodreads:
        Grace Divine, daughter of the local pastor, always knew something terrible happened the night Daniel Kalbi disappeared--the night she found her brother Jude collapsed on the porch, covered in his own blood--but she has no idea what a truly monstrous secret that night held.

       The memories her family has tried to bury resurface when Daniel returns, three years later, and enrolls in Grace and Jude's high school. Despite promising Jude she'll stay away, Grace cannot deny her attraction to Daniel's shocking artistic abilities, his way of getting her to look at the world from new angles, and the strange, hungry glint in his eyes.
       The closer Grace gets to Daniel, the more she jeopardizes her life, as her actions stir resentment in Jude and drive him to embrace the ancient evil Daniel unleashed that horrific night. Grace must discover the truth behind the boy's dark secret...and the cure that can save the ones she loves. But she may have to lay down the ultimate sacrifice to do it--her soul.

My Review:
Ok I may be the only one that didn't love, love, love, love this book.  I did NOT hate it at all.  I just didn't love it crazy like many others have.  Here's my rationale why I didn't love it.  Since August I have read Shiver, Hush Hush, Fallen and now The Dark Divine.  Honestly they were all starting to mush together in my mind.  There was even cross over in some of the names! When the story first started I felt like I had already read the plot a few other times.  Girl finds boy.  Boy is mean to girl.  She won't give up.  Big news shared. Boy and girl have a "connection" they can't fight. For the first half of the book I was disappointed.

WHY I DIDN'T HATE IT - just when I thought I knew how the whole book was going to go - it took some twists and turns I didn't expect!  What I had anticapated happening and was feeling blah about got flipped off its feets with a loud HA as if to say "you don't know anything"! And I didn't. The second half of the story reminded me that I cannot make assumptions about how a story is going to play out just because I've read similar books.  Thankfully Bree Dispain knew how to keep the plot alive and fresh.

Final thought:  In the end I did like the book.  I think if I hadn't read the other 3 books I would've liked it a lot more.  The slow start was very much made up for with a strong ending.

Best stick-with-you image: Daniel and Grace running. 
Best for ages: 13+

December 27, 2009

In My Mail Box or Shopping Bag (Dec 27)

Or in the case of this week - under my Christmas tree!!

This is a weekly meme inspired by Kristi at The Story Siren and Alea at Pop Culture Junkie. In it we share what books arrived at our house via mail, bookstore or library. I got several books this week. Here we go!

The Hollow by Jessica Verday (thanks Wonderous Reads!)

For Christmas
Willow by Julia Hoban
The Hate List by Jennifer Brown
Swoon by Nina Malkin
Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles
Leaving Paradise by Simone Elkeles
Cracked Up to Be by Courtney Summers

From author Rachel Vincent
After being to late in getting in on some left over ARCs she was giving away, she checked out my blog, saw that I was working to get kids to read and was so unbelievably kind to offer me both books! Be sure to check out her website to see what else she has written.

Owl of the Week:

I got this really cute owl wallet from my sister for Christmas :)

December 26, 2009

Holiday Break Reading Challenge UPDATE and Contest Link

Ok here's my update.  So far I've read:

The Dark Divine by Bree Dispain
Lockdown by Walter Dean Myers
The Line by Teri Hall

Just starting:

The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan

And I have to show you the weather, so you'll see how I'm "forced" to stay inside and read:
If you click the picture it'll get bigger so you can really see the snow!

We've had 10+ inches of snow!!
Oh and if you're stuck inside like me - take a minute to check out Firespell by Chloe Neill and enter her giveaway for a Tiffany and Co. necklace.

December 24, 2009

Holiday Break Reading Challenge Activity #7

Before I get to it I want to update what I've read so far.  Since I just started break yesterday I haven't read a lot yet but here they are:

The Dark Divine by Bree Dispain
Lockdown by Walter Dean Myers

Now the challenge

Best and Worst Book-to-Movie Adaptations

This Activity is completely and totally based on your opinion.
1 - You need to choose the BEST Book-to-Movie Adaptation you've seen and the WORST Book-to-Movie Adaptation you've seen.
2 - Post the pictures of the book cover next to the movie poster for each pair.
3 - Use Mr. Linky to link your post to the Holiday Break Reading Challenge Blog.

I actually had an easy time with this one! :)

Because of Winn Dixie

City of Ember

Thinking On Thursday

On Thursdays I'm going to take time to step back and just share my thoughts on things related to reading. Sometimes these may be my thoughts or thoughts I've gotten from my students. It depends on the Thursday. It depends on the topic. It depends on the week!  And this week all I'm thinking about is:

Wishing you a very merry Christmas!!!!!

And to say thank you for being a follower.  I'm amazed that I have over 130 people who are interested in what I have to say about books :)
Enjoy your holiday and I'll be back on the blog come Monday (maybe I'll do my IMM cuz I know I'm getting some books for Christmas.

December 23, 2009

Waiting (to read) on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event spotlighting upcoming releases we are highly anticipating. It is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. I like to put a twist on this idea and also look at what books I'm waiting to read but haven't gotten to yet.

So I'm at the start of my Holiday Break Reading Challenge.  You can see my post on what I'm doing for the challenge here.  The next book on my list is one I've been waiting to read.  That would be:

The Line by Teri Hall
Release date: March 2, 2010
From Goodreads:
An invisible, uncrossable physical barrier encloses the Unified States. The Line is the part of the border that lopped off part of the country, dooming the inhabitants to an unknown fate when the enemy used a banned weapon. It’s said that bizarre creatures and superhumans live on the other side, in Away. Nobody except tough old Ms. Moore would ever live next to the Line.

Nobody but Rachel and her mother, who went to live there after Rachel’s dad died in the last war. It’s a safe, quiet life. Until Rachel finds a mysterious recorded message that can only have come from Away. The voice is asking for help.
Who sent the message? Why is her mother so protective? And to what lengths is Rachel willing to go in order to do what she thinks is right?

I saw this one at least a month ago on another blogger's site and thought it sounded fantastic.  The cover really gets me as well.  The sparsity of it really draws me in.  I was lucky enough to be offered a copy by Teri herself! This will be my next read and I can't wait to get started!

December 22, 2009

Holiday Break Reading Challenge Activity #5

Here's the rules for today's challenge from the Holiday Break Reading Challenge website:

1 - Pick up the book you are currently reading.

2 - Since it is December 22nd, turn to page 22 in your book.
3 - Count down to the 22nd line on the page. (If there is a partial word on the line you can leave it off.)
4 - Post a picture of your book cover along with the 22nd line from the 22nd page on your blog.
5 - Use Mr. Linky to link your post to the Holiday Break Reading Challenge blog.

I'm currently reading Lockdown by Walter Dean Myers.  Here is my line:

                         "Willis if he could borrow $20. Willis said that...."

Not exciting of a line but that's what it was :)  Go here to see more.

December 21, 2009

What I'm Reading Monday Dec 21

This is a weekly meme hosted by J. Kaye's Book Blog. Each week on Monday we tell what we read the previous week and what we plan to read in the upcoming week. I also try to add in what new books are being released this week.  I like to put a twist on this an also look at what new books are coming out this week.

Last week I finished: The Dark Divine 
Look for my review on this one soon. 

This week I've started: Lockdown by Walter Dean Myers
I absolutely love Walter Dean Myers, and very excited that I got this book for review!

I also plan to read: The Line by Teri Hall, The Forest of Hand and Teeth by Carrie Ryan and Intertwined by Gena Showalter

New books this week

Stupid Cupid by Rhonda Stapleton D
Released Dec 22 by Simon Pulse
      Felicity's no ordinary teen matchmaker...she's a cupid!

Felicity Walker believes in true love. That's why she applies for a gig at the matchmaking company Cupid's Hollow. But when Felicity gets the job, she learns that she isn't just a matchmaker...she's a cupid! (There's more than one of them, you know.)

The Ever Breath by Julianna Baggott
Released Dec 22 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers
      In a world where locust fairies flutter and firebreathers burst from snowbanks, two children are having the adventure of their lives. Truman and his twin sister, Camille, have just met their grandmother . . . and she’s a little strange. She whispers a tale about something called the Ever Breath, an amber orb that maintains the balance between our world and a dreamy one of imagination—and evil.

December 20, 2009

Holiday Reading Challenge #3

The Rules for this challenge:

It's time to get your creative juices flowing. I've seen this challenge on several blogs during various read-a-thons. Here is a link to the one Bart's Bookshelf hosted.

Here is what I'm asking you to do:
1 - Choose 3 or 4 books from your bookshelf that, when put together, form a sentence.
2 - Take a picture of your books / sentence.
3 - Post you sentence and your picture on your blog.
4 - Use Mr. Linky to link to your post to the Holiday Break Reading Challenge Activity #3 post.
Don't spend too much time on this...BUT, make sure the sentence makes sense. Here is my example

I did two because on the first one it was hard to see the book Sweethearts.

Looking for Alaska
Blue Bloods

Beautiful Creatures
Looking for Alaska
Blue Bloods

Go here to see more!

The Dark Divine Give-Away!

I some how got a second copy of The Dark Divine.  I have no need for two, so I'm putting the second one up for grabs.  This is an ARC not a final copy.  To win I'll keep it easy.  I have enough holiday stress!  Just fill out the form.  I only need an email.  No extra entries!  US residents only.  Ends 11:59 EST Dec 31.  Happy New Year!

In My Mail Box or Shopping Bag Dec 20th

This is a weekly meme inspired by Kristi at The Story Siren and Alea at Pop Culture Junkie. In it we share what books arrived at our house via mail, bookstore or library. I got several books this week. Here we go!

I didn't get much at all this week, but with the holidays coming that works for me.  AND one of the books I got is a book I already won a copy of SO watch for a giveaway!

My two books this week were:
(sorry for the bad pic)

A second copy of The Dark Divine! I won a copy last week, got it, and then got this one from the publisher. This will go up as a give-away!!! Watch for the post today!

(I put a copy of the cover pic below)
From Goodreads:
Fourteen-year-old Trey Laporte is not a kid anymore. Not after the day he wakes up in agony—retina-splitting, vomit-inducing agony. His clothes are torn. His room is trashed.
Enter Lucien Charron, the mysterious, long-lost “uncle” with freakish fire-flecked eyes and skin that blisters in the sun. Suddenly, Trey finds himself living in a luxury penthouse at the heart of a strange and sinister empire built on the powers of the Netherworld—vampires, demons, sorcerers, and djinn.

And there is a girl—Alexa Charron—who is half vampire, half human, and insanely pretty, with powers all of her own. Trey is falling for her.
Trey is training night and day to control the newly discovered power lurking inside him. Now, demons are closing in on every side, and the most psychopathic bloodsucker to rock the Netherworld wants to destroy him. Above all, he must face one terrifying question:
Is he a boy . . . or is he a beast?

Owl of the Week
I got this really cute travel coffee cup at Caribou Coffee (my favorite!)

December 19, 2009

Secret Santa Gift!!!!!!

So I joined the The Secret Santa gift exchange organized by the amazing Kate at The Neverending Shelf.  I got my present a bit over a week ago, but business kept my from posting about it til now.  Here's what I got!

The book Crossroads by Chris Grabenstein
I had this book on my "need to read" list on Goodreads, so I was super super excited to get it! It sounds fantastic. I've read just a bit of it and can already tell it's gonna be hard to put down.
And then of course the adorable OWL bookmark! I have the notebook that matches it, so I was thrilled to get the bookmark as well!

And the gift giver was............

As you can see my Secret Santa was Lynne from Lynne's Little Corner of the World
Thank you Lynne!!!!!!!!!

December 18, 2009

Holiday Break Reading Activity #1!

Here's the activity:

1 – Go to “Fake Name Generator” or click
       The name that appears is your author name.
2 – Go to “Random Word Generator” or click
      The word listed under “Random Verb” is your title.
3 – Go to “FlickrCC” or click
      Type your title into the search box. The first photo that contains a person is your cover.
4 – Use Picnik or similar to put it all together. Be sure to crop and/or zoom in.
5 – Post it to your site. Along with a brief summary of the novel based on the cover you created.

Here's my entry:

Would it matter?
Could her life be changed by this one relationship?
Did she have the strength?
Maya had always believed she knew what to do, that she knew what to believe,
that she should follow the plan before her.
One meeting.  One sentence. One last chance.
Everything she knew was in doubt.
Doubt by first time novelest: Ann Willingham

So what do you think?  Would you be interested enough to pick it up off the bookstore shelf??? I had fun making it :)

Go to the official site for the challenge to see more!

I went back and made it more "book" shape.  Here's that version:

December 17, 2009

Thinking on Thursday

On Thursdays I'm going to take time to step back and just share my thoughts on things related to reading.  Sometimes these may be my thoughts or thoughts I've gotten from my students.  It depends on the Thursday.  It depends on the topic.  It depends on the week!

This Thursday I thought I'd give my thoughts on books that make great gifts. 

For the 9-13 Year Old Boys

The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod series by Heather Brewer.  I've said it before, and I'll say it again - this is an awesome series!
Anything by Mike Lupica - he writes great sports books that go beyond just sports.

For the 9-13 Year Old Girls
Dork Diaries by Rachel R. Russell.  This is the Diary of a Wimpy Kid for girls.  My 10 yr old daughter read it and loved it.  I've also had some 7th grade girls read it and enjoy it as well.
Savvy by Ingrid Law.  I read this one this summer and loved it.  The main character, Mib, grows up before your eyes.  Sweet, touching and at times funny.

For Teen Girls
The Uglies series by Scott Westerfeld.  An all time favorite that questions the idea of "perfect" beauty and conforming.  Every girl I've had that has read this series has loved it.

Life as We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer.  A great book that really sticks with you.  Just make sure the girl you give this to is ok with serious books.

For Teen Boys (very tough catigory!)
Fallen Angels by Walter Dean Myers.  A book about a boy fighting in Vietnam.  Amazing story.  Amazing characters.  Warning - there is a lot of swearing in it, so make sure this is ok with any boy you might give it to.

The Dead and the Gone by Susan Beth Pfeffer.  This is technically the second book in the series but they can be read in either order.  This book is better for the boys because the main character is a boy.  Again - make sure the boy you give this to is ok with a serious read.


When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead.  An amazing book that will make you almost gasp out loud.  Well crafted with strong characters.  See my review here.

The Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt.  You'll laugh.  You'll cry.  You'll be glad you read it.  Read my review here.

December 16, 2009

Waiting and Waiting and Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event spotlighting upcoming releases we are highly anticipating. It is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. I like to put a twist on this idea and also look at what books I'm waiting to read but haven't gotten to yet. 

I have two this week. 

1.  Captivate by Carrie Jones
I read Need a really long time ago - right when it first came out.  Of course the cover really drew me in.  Isn't it pretty? But I ended up buying it for several reasons. I thought the story sounded interesting.  Pixies = cool I thought :)  I also thought it would be another book to hook my students with especially with so many of them reading Twilight (I know, I know not every book should be compared to Twilight but..... I worked in this case)  The story turned out to be pretty good.  It had some weakness, but over-all a fun read.  At the time I had no clue there was a sequel coming, but I was happy to see one.  There were some questions in Need that needed answering. 

2.  Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
I've read so many great things about this book, so I can't WAIT to read it.  I have it sitting on my shelf, and it's so pretty.  It will be one of my next reads.  I know you're wondering why I don't just read it now.  I've got some books I need to read for reviews, so BC will have to wait.  Soon tho - very soon!

So what books are you waiting on this week???