Friday, January 31, 2014

What I’ve Read this Month- the January 2014 Edition

As a middle grade/intermediate school librarian, I am constantly reading. I spotted this post over on Stephanie Howell’s blog and it caused me to think about what I read. 

Before I became a librarian I read a lot of adult fiction, but these days I tend to read more of what my student’s (5th and 6th graders) are reading. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE middle grade books, but as I read Stephanie’s post I realized how much I miss adult books.  So this month I challenged myself to read at least one adult book.  Thanks Stephanie, I needed someone to get me back to the adult fiction world! I forgot how much I loved it!

In the past years I have kept track of what I am reading using the Good Reads website. This is a wonderful website that I find very user friendly and full of good reviews of books for all ages. I haven’t always been the best at keeping up with what I am reading, but with Good Reads help I have been making a better effort going into 2014.

This month I have read:



Flora & Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo (Just won the Newbery Award, Yay!)

The Cheshire Cheese Cat: A Dickens of a Tale  by Carmen Arga Deedy

39 Clues Series books #2-#9

2. One False Note by Gordon Korman
3. The Sword Thief by Peter Lerangis
4. Beyond the Grave by Jude Watson
5. The Black Circle by Patrick Carman
6. In Too Deep by Jude Watson
7. The Viper’s Nest by Peter Lerangis
8. The Emperor's Code by Gordon Korman
9. Storm Warning by Linda Sue Park

Bear Feels Sick by Karma Wilson

Henry and Mudge: The First Book by Cynthia Rylant

Dear Mrs. Larue by Mark Teague

I also started Touch & Go by Lisa Gardner & planned to finish it, but it just didn't happen.

What I’ve noticed this month about what I’ve read is that..

 1) Once I start a series it is very difficult for me to stop reading it or read anything else until I finish the whole series.  That’s why I get so frustrated when I finish a book in a series and realize the next one has not been published yet… MAKES. ME. CRAZY!!

2) I know I’m not reading enough with the boys. This month Ethan only read me three books, which is not enough for a second grader! Carter reads every night, but not usually to me. He reads every night as part of his reading requirements for his literacy class at school. I began the year having him read to me from his book, but that has dwindled since we are in the middle of basketball season, Jess is gone so much & I spend the majority of my evening cooking/cleaning and maintaining the chaos that is three little boys.

3) I have read a lot more this month than I have in a while. I’m not sure if it is because I am keeping up with it better & holding myself accountable, or if I am just enjoying reading a series… Who knows, but I am really enjoying it. I notice I am spending less time in front of the t.v. at night & more time in the bed reading myself to sleep. I am more rested and happier.  

4) My taste in adult fiction tends to be more of the James Patterson, Patricia Cornwell, Lisa Gardner, Michael Conelly variety, full of murders, mysteries, detectives, and lawyers.  I also tend to gravitate towards the books that are part of a series, usually with a main character  you see in all the books. Alex Cross… Kay Scarpetta… Harry Bosch… D.D. Warren.  Because of this fascination with characters I now have a long list of adult books I want to read or reread. I’m not usually a re-reader, but I know I’ve missed or forgotten some things about my favorite characters and I need to go back and make myself familiar with them again.

4) I need to actually review the books I’m reading using the Good Reads site, but I’m a little timid to do so. I know that sounds crazy, but as a librarian I feel like I should review a book using all kinds of good literary terms. In reality, I tend to go with my gut feeling about a book when I read it and that makes it harder for me to write a review. 

Thinking about books for February, these are on my current to read list:

Middle Grade:

The Rest of the 39 clues series
The Boy on the Wooden Box
Prisoner B-3087
The Real Boy
Breaking Stalin's Nose
Half Brother

I also want to read as many of the books on this list as I can before School Library Journal Battle of the Books begins. This is something I will share with my students and I want to have read as many as I can to promote and share them with the students.

D.D. Warren series by Lisa Gardner  

For My Own Boys:
To encourage their own interests in reading, to just listen to Carter read from his assigned book, to sit and let Jude just flip through his board books and attempt to read books to him from his book shelf, it he will sit and let me.  I did recently run across an email from Scholastic that has lists of books that are good for students depending on what grade they are in. I’ve marked the ones we have or have access to and Ethan and I are reading through some of them as well.

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