June 29, 2015

I Need Some Suggestions for Following!!

Hey everyone I need some help from you.  

For my media specialist class I need to follow some media/library related blogs, Twitter accounts or hashtags, etc.  

Do you have any suggestions????????


June 26, 2015

Cover Crush: Great Ball of Light

I'm kinda in love with this cover.  

I saw it at Barnes and Noble and had to snap a picture of it!

It's just so simple yet filled with details!
I just want to explore the cover because I know I'll see things I've missed.
Then I want to read the book because I want to know how all the things on the cover fit into the story.

About the Book
When twin brother and sister Fenton and Fiona find a ball of light in their backyard, things get weird. Especially when Fenton figures out it can bring things back to life. Everything from bugs, to trees, to their old dog Scruffy, to - well - people. Namely, their grandfather. Because they really do miss him, and more than that, their father and their grandfather have unsettled business to take care of. But be warned: bringing back things from the dead gets a little more complicated when they stick around.

This Book Looks Interesting: The Library at Mount Char

I'm sure I'm the last to hear about this book, but I just saw an ad for it in Shelf Awareness.  It looks very interesting!

Do you think it's adult or YA???

Have you read it?  Read any reviews?

Neil Gaiman meets Joe Hill in this astonishingly original, terrifying, and darkly funny contemporary fantasy. 

Carolyn's not so different from the other human beings around her. She's sure of it. She likes guacamole and cigarettes and steak. She knows how to use a phone. She even remembers what clothes are for. 

After all, she was a normal American herself, once. 

That was a long time ago, of course--before the time she calls "adoption day," when she and a dozen other children found themselves being raised by a man they learned to call Father.

Father could do strange things. He could call light from darkness. Sometimes he raised the dead. And when he was disobeyed, the consequences were terrible. 

In the years since Father took her in, Carolyn hasn't gotten out much. Instead, she and her adopted siblings have been raised according to Father's ancient Pelapi customs. They've studied the books in his library and learned some of the secrets behind his equally ancient power. 

Sometimes, they've wondered if their cruel tutor might secretly be God. 

Now, Father is missing. And if God truly is dead, the only thing that matters is who will inherit his library--and with it, power over all of creation. 

As Carolyn gathers the tools she needs for the battle to come, fierce competitors for this prize align against her. 

But Carolyn can win. She's sure of it. What she doesn't realize is that her victory may come at an unacceptable price--because in becoming a God, she's forgotten a great deal about being human.

June 23, 2015

A Western?? - Vengeance Road

I grew up in cowboy country.  My school mascot was a cowboy.  My dad was a cowboy.  I participated in branding and watched rodeos.  

My dad got me reading Louis L'amour books.

So when I saw that Vengeance Road paid homage to the classic western I was very interested.  
I haven't read it yet, but I thought I'd share it.

About the Book
When Kate Thompson’s father is killed by the notorious Rose Riders for a mysterious journal that reveals the secret location of a gold mine, the eighteen-year-old disguises herself as a boy and takes to the gritty plains looking for answers and justice. What she finds are devious strangers, dust storms, and a pair of brothers who refuse to quit riding in her shadow. But as Kate gets closer to the secrets about her family, she gets closer to the truth about herself and must decide if there's room for love in a heart so full of hate.      In the spirit of True Grit, the cutthroat days of the Wild West come to life for a new generation. 

The Book Trailer

I'm very interested in this one.  It looks great AND it reminds me of growing up!

June 22, 2015

Book Review: Nest by Esther Ehrlich

Title: Nest
Author: Esther Ehrlich
Copy Obtained: Borrowed from friend

A heartfelt and unforgettable middle-grade novel about an irresistible girl and her family, tragic change, and the healing power of love and friendship. In 1972 home is a cozy nest on Cape Cod for eleven-year-old Naomi “Chirp” Orenstein, her older sister, Rachel; her psychiatrist father; and her dancer mother. But then Chirp’s mom develops symptoms of a serious disease, and everything changes.

Chirp finds comfort in watching her beloved wild birds. She also finds a true friend in Joey, the mysterious boy who lives across the street. Together they create their own private world and come up with the perfect plan: Escape. Adventure. Discovery.

I'm going to be honest - I'm torn about how to review this book and what to say.  It's not that I didn't like it - I did! But I'm torn about how and when I would recommend it to students.  It covers some very tough issues (I won't share them to avoid spoilers).  These issues (on in particular) would be very difficult for some students to handle.  Because of that I would not hand this book to every child.  Some just wouldn't be ready for it.  I think the topics it covers are very important, and kids need to know about them and see how people deal with them. It is extremely important! But I know that some of my younger students wouldn't be ready for it.

As an adult I felt for every singe character in this book.  Chirp is so sweet and kind and trying to do her best.  To watch her struggle through all this was difficult.  What kids could gain from reading her story is an understanding of people who are going through something difficult.  They would walk away with a broader view of the world.  I also felt for Chirp's sister Rachel.  At times I wanted to shake her, but I understood why she was acting as she was. Even though she's not the main character, I think readers can learn a lot from her part of the story as well.  Lastly I felt for their father.  As an adult I could connect with him the most.  I think much of his story would be lost on younger people reading the book, but adults deciding to read it would relate to him.

About Joey.  Loved him! I wanted to bundle him up and bring him home with me.  But again his story is something younger kids might struggle with.  There isn't really any strong clear details about his home life when he goes in the house and closes the door, but it's clear what he's dealing with - an heartbreaking.

Few other things - I liked the Jewish aspects of the novel.  My husband is Jewish, so it was nice to see the Jewish faith portrayed so simply and almost matter-of-fact.  I think it would be great for all kids to see that because it would give them some knowledge they might not have.

So in ending - great book that gives a lot to the reader, but I will be careful what readers I recommend it to.

June 18, 2015

Look What I Have to Read for My Class!!

I don't think I've shared with everyone that I'm back in school.

I've been an English teacher for 20 years, and right now I'm a "teacher on special assignment" as an instructional coach.  Although this job is a ton of work I thought it might be the right time to head back to school!

I have to decided to finally get my school media specialist license!

This is something I've wanted to do for awhile, and with a push and support from my husband I am!

I just finished my first class and now I move into one I' really excited about.  

It's titled:

Reading, Listening, Viewing Guidance & Selection of Resources for Children

It has a HUGE reading list, so I thought I'd share.  Here's what I'll be reading

We chose two

The Nonfiction Reading
Very excited about these!

Easy Readers?
I think that's what these will be.  This type will be new to me!

Early or Beginning Chapter Books? 

Middle Grade

Graphic Novels
This look fun!!


Picture Books
Most are award winners that were assigned

Lots of reading, but I'm looking forward to all of it!

Have you read any of them??

June 15, 2015

The Book That Stopped Me in My Tracks at Barnes and Noble!

My daughter and I went to Barnes and Noble the other day.  Scary place for both of us to go together!

I was walking down one of the YA aisles, and the cover of this book literally stopped me in my tracks!

First I LOVE the cover.  I just love the scroll work with the vines and flowers.
And then that title! That's what stopped me.  It totally grabbed me and made me laugh.

About the book:

You can’t block the dead. 
Annabel Craven hopes she’ll fit in—maybe even be popular—at the Academy. She’s worried she’ll stay friendless and phoneless (it’s true). But when she finds a mysterious phone in the woods near the cemetery, one of her problems is solved . . . and another one is just beginning. 

Someone won’t stop texting her. And that someone seems . . . dead. How is Annabel supposed to make friends when her phone keeps blowing up with messages from the afterlife? And what will happen if she doesn’t text back?

“Scary—but not too scary.”--SLJ

“Good, ghostly fun.”—Kirkus Reviews 

June 11, 2015

Why Haven't I Read This? - Perry's Killer by Joe Schreiber

A long while back I read the book Au Revoir, Crazy European Chick. I really enjoyed it. 
 You can read my review of it HERE.

Well - there is a sequel and it has been out since 2012!
Why haven't I read it yet?????

I guess I need to get on it.

When Perry ends up in Venice on a European tour with his band Inchworm, he can’t resist a visit to Harry’s Bar, where Gobi told him she’d meet him someday. The last time he saw Gobi, five people were assassinated one crazy night in New York City. Well . . . Gobi shows up, and once again Perry is roped into a wild, nonstop thrill ride with a body count. Double crossings, kidnappings, CIA agents, arms dealers, boat chases in Venetian canals, and a shootout in the middle of a Santa Claus convention ensue. 

June 8, 2015

Snap Shot Reading: Nest

To keep blogging simple I like to share what I'm reading through a snapshot.

Today's Snap Shot:

Nest by Esther Ehrlich

For fans of Jennifer Holm (Penny from Heaven, Turtle in Paradise), a heartfelt and unforgettable middle-grade novel about an irresistible girl and her family, tragic change, and the healing power of love and friendship. In 1972 home is a cozy nest on Cape Cod for eleven-year-old Naomi “Chirp” Orenstein, her older sister, Rachel; her psychiatrist father; and her dancer mother. But then Chirp’s mom develops symptoms of a serious disease, and everything changes.
   Chirp finds comfort in watching her beloved wild birds. She also finds a true friend in Joey, the mysterious boy who lives across the street. Together they create their own private world and come up with the perfect plan: Escape. Adventure. Discovery.

June 5, 2015

Cover Crush: First & Then by Emma Mills

I love book covers! Really love them.  So much I almost develop a crush on them.  

Today I'm crushing on:

It's just so colorful and simple.  I'm drawn to all the colors in the raindrops, but then my eye goes directly to the title.  
I just love it! 

Devon Tennyson wouldn't change a thing. She's happy watching Friday night games from the bleachers, silently crushing on best friend Cas, and blissfully ignoring the future after high school. But the universe has other plans. It delivers Devon's cousin Foster, an unrepentant social outlier with a surprising talent for football, and the obnoxiously superior and maddeningly attractive star running back, Ezra, right where she doesn't want them first into her P.E. class and then into every other aspect of her life.

June 3, 2015

Nightborn: Thrones & Bones #2 GIVEAWAY

Today I'm excited to share yet another book and giveaway with you!
The book is Nightborn - second in the Thrones & Bones series!

Twelve-year-old Desstra is in training to join the Underhand, the elite agents of the dark elves. But her graduation is jeopardized by the betrayal of a teammate. Things go from bad to worse when she is sent on a secret mission, under the supervision of this same rival.

Karn is trading in the city of Bense when he is snatched into the air by a wyvern, who carries him to the home of the dragon Orm. The great dragon tells Karn he believes a second Horn of Osius exists, hidden across the continent in the city of Castlebriar, and that Thianna went searching for the horn and is now missing. With only a dragon’s blessing to aid them and a mysterious riddle to guide them, Karn and Thianna must race the dark elves to a prize that could alter the fate of nations.

Meet Karn. He is destined to take over the family farm in Norrøngard. His only problem? He’d rather be playing the board game Thrones and Bones.

Enter Thianna. Half human, half frost giantess. She’s too tall to blend in with other humans but too short to be taken seriously as a giant.

When family intrigues force Karn and Thianna to flee into the wilderness, they have to keep their sense of humor and their wits about them. But survival can be challenging when you’re being chased by a 1,500-year-old dragon, Helltoppr the undead warrior and his undead minions, an evil uncle, wyverns, and an assortment of trolls and giants.


LOU ANDERS’s research on Norse mythology while writing book one in the Thrones and Bones series, FROSTBORN, turned into a love affair with Viking culture and a first visit to Norway. Anders is the recipient of a Hugo Award for editing and a Chesley Award for art direction. He has published over 500 articles and stories on science fiction and fantasy television and literature. A prolific speaker, Anders regularly attends writing conventions around the country. He and his family reside in Birmingham, Alabama. 

You can visit Anders online at louanders.com and ThronesandBones.com, on Facebook, and on Twitter at @ThronesandBones. 

I think the book (and series) sounds fantastic! 
Definitely something my middle students would love!


1 Finished Copy of Frostborn (book 1)
1 Galley of Nightborn
1 Set of trading cards!

US only
Must be at least 13

a Rafflecopter giveaway

June 2, 2015

Circus Mirandus Release Day Blitz +GIVEAWAY

I am so excited about today’s release of CIRCUS MIRANDUS by the fabulous Cassie Beasley! Thank you for stopping by for the Blogger Blitz that I and so many other wonderful blogs are participating in. Thanks so much to Word Spelunking for organizing this! 

I just got this book in the mail, and I think it sounds fantastic!!! Super fun and perfect for middle school students.  

Cassie has sent along a very special letter sharing her feelings about seeing her book get published and all of the amazing support she has received so far.

More details about the book are below, as well as a Rafflecopter giveaway for a bunch of swag items, courtesy of Penguin Young Readers! 
Enter for a chance to win at the bottom of this post.

Author: Cassie Beasley
Publisher: Dial
Release Date: June 2nd 2015

Micah Tuttle believes in magic, even though his awful Great-Aunt Gertrudis doesn’t approve. Micah believes in the stories his dying Grandpa Ephraim tells him of the magical Circus Mirandus: the invisible tiger guarding the gates, the beautiful flying birdwoman, and the magician more powerful than any other—the Man Who Bends Light. Finally, Grandpa Ephraim offers proof. The Circus is real—and the Lightbender owes Ephraim a miracle. With his friend Jenny Mendoza in tow, Micah sets out to find the Circus and the man he believes will save his grandfather. The only problem is, the Lightbender doesn't want to keep his promise. And now it's up to Micah to get the miracle he came for. Readers will fall in love with CIRCUS MIRANDUS, which celebrates the power of seeing magic in the world.

About Cassie Beasley:
CASSIE BEASLEY is from rural Georgia, where, when she's not writing, she helps out on the family pecan farm. She earned her MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults at the Vermont College of Fine Arts. CIRCUS MIRANDUS is her first novel.

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8016035.Cassie_Beasley

Cassie wrote a letter for you the reader!

Dear Readers,

Ages ago I hung a poster in my room with the words “The Circus Opens Summer 2015” in bold letters across the top. At the time, it seemed that Summer 2015 would never come. Now, miraculously, June 2 is here, and Circus Mirandus is springing up in bookshops all over the country.

In the story, those called to Circus Mirandus feel a change in the wind. They hear music on the air, pipes and drums leading them toward magic and hope and heart’s desires. Eventually they find themselves before the gates, standing, as I am now, on the threshold of somewhere both wonderful and unknowable.

As people read the pages into which I’ve poured so much time and self, I wonder what they’ll think of the world I’ve created. I wonder if they will love it as much as I do. It’s an exciting moment, stepping through these gates into a place I’ve imagined but never seen.

Thank you so much for making this journey with me. Thank you for supporting the book. Thank you, most of all, for believing.

Cassie Beasley

Giveaway information:
There will be 5 winners, and the Giveaway will run from June 2nd until June 16th. Winners will receive:

Signed hardcover of CIRCUS MIRANDUS
Audio sampler
Animal crackers
Bookmarks (pack of 10)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

June 1, 2015

What to Read Next???

I'm looking at three different books to read next, and I need your help!

Which book should I read next????

Which book should I read next?

Breathe, Annie Breathe
Kiss of Deception
All the Bright Places
Poll Maker