Monday, March 6, 2017

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

For Pleasure:

I branched out this time with Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance.  My husband read it and told me about it. Then I was listening to "The Librarian Is In" podcast and one of the casters, Frank, talked about it too. Since two people had mentioned this book I thought I had to read it.

It's not my normal read.  I don't normally read memoirs but what attracted me to this book was that some one poor came out of poverty.  Over 90% of my students are on free and reduced lunch.  Many of them come from a line of poverty.  I was interested to read about poverty from some one who grew up in poverty.

This book did not disappoint.  Though my students are definitely not hillbillies their culture and/or class makes them very similar.  Their codes "never insult family", "hit them before they hit you", etc are similar.  Vance had a revolving door of male figures in his life, so do a lot of my students.

This book touched close to home for me and I'm thankful I read it!

For School:

My Junior Library Guild subscription came in this week and I'm reading my way through the box.

Billions of Bricks by Kurt Cyrus is a peppy rhyming book.  It does have counting in it but counting isn't the focus.  I think anyone would like this book but I think boys would be drawn to it for it's focus on construction.

Nightlights by Lorena Alvarez is a creepy graphic novel.  Sandy goes to Catholic school where the nuns are mean.  They don't appreciate her drawings and think they're a waste of time.  A new girl appears and becomes fast friends with Sandy, except that the new girl is a little... weird.

Look Up! by Jung Jin-Ho Y'all!  I love this book!  The drawings are drawn from the perspective of someone looking down at people.  At first I though a person was a spaceship until my eye adjusted and I realized I was looking a hair, a roundish body and two feet.  In the end the people on the ground lay down and look up at the person looking down at them.  So cute!

One Proud Penny by Randy Siegel is a nonfiction book about the life of a penny.  It starts in Philadelphia and goes everywhere including a washing machine and under a stamp machine.

Trudy's Big Swim: How Gertrude Ederle Swam the English Channel and Took the World by Storm by Sue Macy is a biography about how Trudy swam the English channel and broke the world record. It's major girl power!


  1. I'm reading "The Miracle of St. Anthony: A Season with Coach Bob Hurley and Basketball's Most Improbable Dynasty". I'd picked this up off the used book shelf at the library, paid my $4.00, and really have enjoyed it so far. The coach in me loves books like this because I can see the relationship between a good coach and a good teacher! :)

    Thanks for sharing your titles with us!

  2. I am always looking for book recommendations, and you've provided titles that I am going to have to check out. Thank you:)

  3. The book box sounds really interesting. I've been wondering about Hillbilly Elegy, and now that you have framed it in connection to our students, even if they're not "hillbillies," I'm definitely going to give it a try.

  4. Thanks for all of the book recommendations. The Hillbilly Elegy sounds interesting, but I'm like you and tend to avoid the memoires. I will add it to my "To read" list on Goodreads.

    Right now I am reading, "A Man Called Ove" which is about a grumpy old man who has had a hard life, but is also a hero at heart. It has brought me tears and laughter and I highly recommend it!

    -Amanda at

  5. I've never heard of any of these books! Excited to branch out, thank you!

  6. Hillbilly Elegy is certainly on my list, and as for the picture books, I loved Look Up! & have Brick by Brick & the one about Gertrude Ederle on my list, too. Great list!

  7. awesome! Hillbilly Elegy is on my wishlist.