It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 9/21/15

Although I have been warned that the first year teaching is a challenge, I truly had no idea what I was getting myself into until I actually stepped foot in the classroom. Unfortunately, the challenges of my first year teaching have zapped my energy. As a result, my blog has suffered. I just don’t have the time or energy I used to have to write and reflect on my blog.

However, my goal for this year teaching is not to quit blogging. Blogging and teaching go hand-in-hand and I can’t quit one and not the other. I have reasoned with myself and settled on making extra effort to write one blog each week. Although there are wonderful weekly blog memes out there (Slice of Life, Celebrate, Poetry Friday), my favorite blog meme is It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?. In this online community, my reading life is reenergized weekly by the awesome posts from fellow teachers, librarians, and readers. I can take my energy from this community and help strengthen my classroom reading community. If I’m not excited about books, how can I expect my students to be?


Thanks to Unleashing Readers and Teach Mentor Texts for hosting the kidlit version and allowing people like me to fall in love with reading each week.

Here’s what I’ve been reading:

Chiggers by Hope Larson


This title is a recommendation from my seventh grade girls who love graphic novels. It’s an old-fashioned summer camp story with a twist. One camper arrives late and claims to have been struck by lightning. While no one believes her crazy stories, Abby gets to know the new camper and starts to believe there’s some truth to her stories.

While I enjoyed the story, I didn’t love it. I couldn’t keep the characters straight! It was just like David Copperfield (*flashback to Classic American and English Novels in college*). Abby looked a lot like her other friends which created confusion for me. The black-and-white images didn’t have the clarity for me to easily identify who was who, unlike most colored graphic novels. I also found the plotline weak and fairly dull. Moreover, I think there are better options for titles as this title has little to do with the actual story.

Our Hero (Babymouse #2) by Jennifer L. Holm


Oh, Babymouse. I have been hearing so much about these graphic novels that I had to see what the buzz was about. Unfortunately, I still don’t see what the buzz is about. Yes, Babymouse is charming, but I found the novel to lack depth. The brevity of this book prevented a lot from actually happening in way of character development and plot. It leans more toward comic rather than novel. Although I’m disappointed, I haven’t given up! There are a lot more Babymouse books to choose from.

The Sculptor by Scott McCloud


Would you give your life to be great at something? When David’s art and career take a downfall, he decides to make a deal with death and give his life for art. Suddenly, he finds himself counting down the days until his death BUT he is able to manipulate all materials with his hands. He is an artist…but why is he not becoming the renowned artist he had hoped to become?

Two years ago I read Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics, an informational graphic novel about comics. While I wasn’t overly thrilled with it, I loved his fictional graphic novel, The Sculptor. This book is a beautiful adult graphic novel that is worth your time.