January 15, 2014

A New Direction - Books I'm Thankful For

Hey all.  I've been struggling for a while with what to do with The O.W.L. 
I know I'm done with blogging full time, and with my students running Hooked on Books I know I can review books there any time I want.  But with that said, I'm having a hard time just giving up this site! I wish I could just be like some bloggers and walk away from it, but I can't.  

My thought right now is to use this site not for reviews but just to share books I'm thankful for.  
I'm working hard to focus on the positive in my life, and books are always a positive.  
So I thought maybe I'd post a few times a week books that I'm thankful for.  No reviews.  Just the book and summary and a few sentences why.  
After 18 years of teaching I feel I've seen enough books and readers come past me that I have plenty of books to be thankful for - whether because they got a non-reader reading or because they gave my class some good material for discussion or just simple because they added joy to my life while reading them.  

I'll start today!

The Outsiders
S.E. Hinton

I'm thankful for this book because I have loved it since I was 13 (when I first memorized Nothing Gold Can Stay), and because it continues to appeal to generation after generation of students.  We never stop feeling like we don't fit in and SE Hinton helps us see that differently.

According to Ponyboy, there are two kinds of people in the world: greasers and socs. A soc (short for "social") has money, can get away with just about anything, and has an attitude longer than a limousine. A greaser, on the other hand, always lives on the outside and needs to watch his back. Ponyboy is a greaser, and he's always been proud of it, even willing to rumble against a gang of socs for the sake of his fellow greasers--until one terrible night when his friend Johnny kills a soc. The murder gets under Ponyboy's skin, causing his bifurcated world to crumble and teaching him that pain feels the same whether a soc or a greaser.


  1. This is a GREAT idea! And a great first book. Awesome!!

  2. Nice choice. I also love this book and always had a great response when I taught it. There is a surprisingly good movie to go with it, which is always a bonus. The kids can watch the movie and the teacher can grade the essays!

  3. I think it's a great idea. That way you can spotlight some of the books you're reading now in a quick way. The days I'm sharing books without interviews, I'm just including a few sentences about why I liked the book too.

    And blogging here once or twice a week is fine. Many of us are finding the need to cut back on the blogging.