What I read:
I try to keep a book going on my Kindle so I have something to read when I dry my hair or for that odd moment when I have a few moments to read and all I have is my iphone and Kindle app. I mostly purchase nonfiction books for my Kindle when they’re free or cheap, and The More of Less by Joshua Becker is one such title from a few months back. While I’m not ready to embark on a true minimalist journey, I am inspired by Becker and others to really consider the time investment that owning too much stuff requires. I’m still mulling this one over. I think it could be life-changing under the right circumstances. Highly Recommended. (Check out Joshua Becker’s blog to see if his book might be of interest to you.)
I read quite a few fiction titles, all juvenile or young adult:
- Orbiting Jupiter by Gary D. Schmidt — OH. MY. There’s a reason why he’s my favorite juvenile/young adult author, and this book illustrates why. Read it, and while you’re at it, check out this fantastic podcast interview that Center for Lit conducted with him.
- The Crossover by Kwame Alexander–Novels-in-verse are my thing, but basketball (or any sport) isn’t. I didn’t love this one, but I did appreciate the poetry.
- El Deafo by Cece Bell–My first graphic novel but not my last.
- Full of Beans by Jennifer L. Holm–I enjoyed this prequel to Turtle in Paradise , and so did Louise, whom I handed it off to.
I really hoped to have a few loooooong-standing read-alouds finished before I wrote our bimonthly report, but we’re still a few chapters shy of the end of a couple. Even without them, though, we’ve read a lot over the past few months.
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle is a book I’ve read twice this year–three times if you count skimming it in order to lead our bookclub at co-op. Yes, really. I first read this year it for my Newbery Through the Decades Challenge. Then I read it aloud to my girls as a part of our lessons (complete with copywork and dictation) and in preparation for the bookclub. This is how we spent much of our October. I’m pretty sure that this one will make their top picks list for 2016, and it inspired Louise to go on to read the entire series.
Is it possible to read A Wrinkle in Time without following it up with When You Reach Me? Yes–people did it for around five decades. However, now that we have this fabulous “inspired by” novel, why would you? My girls and I read this one immediately on the heels of Wrinkle and LOVED it. This was the second time I’d read it this year, and the third time altogether. Because it’s such a rollercoaster of a ride, it only gets better with anticipation and a wee bit of insight. Read it. You won’t regret it.
This year is our inaugural year of studying Shakespeare together. I’m mostly following Mystie’s plan for studying Shakespeare with upper-elementary and middle school students, with a little bit of Ken Ludwig thrown in for inspiration. I chose The Comedy of Errors because we had the chance to see a musical adaptation of it in Nashville in September, and it was a good choice. We actually used an Archangel audio of it for the first several acts, but the used CDs I purchased were scratched and wouldn’t work toward the end. Thus, we ended up just reading it aloud (Shakespeare with a southern accent, y’all). Both girls really enjoyed it, and I don’t think it will be hard to jump back into a new play in January. That’s a read-aloud win!
We also read Anne’s House of Dreams by L.M. Montgomery. I shared my thoughts about that here.
I can’t say much about these read-alouds because Steady Eddie did most of the reading. I’d read an odd chapter here or there when he was out of town, etc., but I mostly turned it over to him. All of these were big hits with the boys.
They also re-read School for Cats by Esther Averill.
What have you been reading lately? Any winners? I’d love to hear about it!