It's Monday - August 31st

Well, well, well.... I did a pretty lousy job of blogging this summer, didn't I? On the plus side, I *DID* read over the summer.

If you want to read more blogs - and end up with an even BIGGER TBR list.... go to and to read other posts.

I'm just going to toss a few collages onto the blog, and then I'll describe some of my favorites...

Well, this collage had some real winners! I'm not sure I can pick just a few...

Crenshaw - You WANT this book by Katherine Applegate; trust me.

I loved learning more about comics with Understanding Comics and Adventures in Graphica.

Speaking of comics - Nimona (YA) and The Underground Abductor were amazing.

X: A Novel made me want to learn even more about Malcolm X.

ECHO was beautiful. I loved how we got multiple perspectives on World War 2 and how the stories wove together.

Calpurnia Tate was fabulous! I think I liked book 2 even more than the first one (and I did love the first!) (ARC from publisher)

The Martian will be out as a movie soon. While it was definitely heavy on the science, there was a ton of humor that kept the story fun. This is an adult novel, but kids who love science and scifi from upper middle school will enjoy it.

Ashfall was great! I know a lot of people kept telling me to read it, but I ended up picking it up for my son to read. I read the first one, but he blasted through the whole series in a week.

***** My favorite of this lot, though?? FALLOUT by Gwenda Bond. This book was awesome! (I plan to do a full review). It's a look at Lois Lane as a high school student. It's adventurous, up-to-date, and had plenty of little "winks and nods" for those who like Superman tales.... but no prior knowledge of his story is really needed. Best of all, in my mind, is the fact that it's a YA that I can definitely allow upper elementary to read. (No major violence and really only mild crushes on the romance front).

Another excellent set of books. I listened to Beautiful Creatures - well narrated.

I loved Secrets of Selkie Bay (only a little biased due to the name connection...). It had an ambiguous ending that definitely appealed to me. (ARC from publisher)

School for Sidekicks rocked. Lots of twists and turns. I definitely need to make a book display of books that have superhero tie ins! (ARC from publisher)

Life in Outer Space was not what I was expecting - I grabbed it due to the scifi connection in the title. Instead, it was an excellent realistic fiction novel about geeks.... not that I know any of those.

Cleopatra in Space is a fabulous MG graphic novel series. This one had quite a cliffhanger ending, and I can't wait for book 3. I had to wait to read this one until the summer, because it was NEVER on my shelf at school!

Still with me? I can't blame you if you bailed already (this is a lot of books!) I promise to update more regularly this school year.

In this batch, there's some serious variety:

Wishful Drinking had some interesting spots. Overall, I'm not a huge memoir fan - but I couldn't resist hearing about Carrie Fisher's life.

Beyond Magenta was eye opening. I've heard critique from the trans* community about some aspects of this book, but as someone with almost no current knowledge I learned a lot.

Courage Has No Color was an audiobook from YASync this summer, but I've had it on my shelf and radar for a while. It was excellent as well.

Picture Books:
Red - FABULOUS way to introduce how painful labels can be (while many have said this fits with books like George and the transgender experience, it doesn't have to).

Interstellar Cinderella - If you know me, you know this hits all my buttons. This Cinderella is a mechanic and (spoiler alert) doesn't end up married to the prince. Bonus - the illustrations are AWESOME and the prince has dark skin.

How to Read a Story  - This is adorable. I love the illustrations and how the story celebrates creative reading of books. I bought this over the summer and will be gifting it to some little ones in my life.

Let me know in the comments if you want my thoughts on any of the others from my collages... I think this post is already long enough! I'll be doing a Must Read in 2015 update soon as well :)


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