Harriet Spies by Elana K Arnold Blog Tour

I'm so excited to be part of the Blog Tour for the second book in the Harriet series by Elana K. Arnold. Having rich, relatively easy to read books for elementary school readers is so important! I work with strong readers, and this book would be appropriate and accessible for strong early elementary readers. It would be equally enjoyable for older elementary students, too! 
(from the publisher)

There are a few more things you should know about Harriet Wermer: 
* She always tells the truth.
* She’s loving spending her summer on Marble Island, where she is an A+ mystery-solver.
* Okay, maybe she doesn’t always tell the truth.
* Actually...she has a tendency to lie quite a bit.

Which is why, when one of the guests at her grandmother’s bed-and- breakfast finds that their treasured pair of binoculars has gone missing, no one believes Harriet when she said she had nothing to do with it.

But this is one time Harriet isn’t lying—and she knows that if she can find the binoculars and figure out who really took them, she can prove it.

With her cat, Matzo Ball, her grandmother’s basset hound, Moneypenny, and Harriet’s new friend, Clarence, helping her out, Harriet knows she can crack the case. But when the culprit isn’t who Harriet expects, it’s up to her to decide how important the truth really is.

JUST HARRIET and HARRIET SPIES are published by Walden Pond Press, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.

My Thoughts

Harriet doesn't always make great choices. That reminds me of pretty much every child I've ever met, taught, or parented. She is so relatable. Kids will love her explanations of why she lies and learn along with her about the consequences when those around her feel they can't believe her anymore. They'll also feel a deep connection with her impulsivity, which is frequently the reason for her spontaneous lies. 

Harriet also learns great lessons about friendship and making amends when you misstep. This has been a HUGE theme with the kids in my own professional life over the last two school years. Reading Harriet Spies with elementary school students would be a wonderful way to open up conversations about conflict resolution, the idea of how the impact of our actions is just as important as our intentions, and learning how to stand up for yourself in a socially appropriate way. 

Overall, I highly recommend both books in this series for a read aloud, for small group conversations, and for motivating readers who are looking for a funny story with an endearingly energetic and stubborn main character.

Fun connections with this text:

* Ornithology is a big element in Harriet's life on Marble Island. Pair the Harriet books with some nonfiction books about birds -- Check out this post from the New York Public Library for ideas.

* Making dollhouse miniatures. Grab some materials and let your little reader create miniatures for a dollhouse. They can build with recyclables, balsa wood, or any spare items you have around the house or classroom. If you need inspiration, this site has a lot of ideas and tutorials. 

* Magnifying glass time! Harriet acquires a magnifying glass and is thrilled with the small discoveries she makes about the tiny things around her. Set up a station with lots of items to explore with a few magnifying glasses and let your readers make their own discoveries. 

* Olallieberry Jam. I'm going to admit - I thought this was a made up word. When I took a minute to do a littler research, though, I learned that it is a hybrid that is part blackberry and part raspberry. I even bought my own little container of olallieberry jam to try. 

(I love trying or making foods referenced in books I've read! Check out a joint post I wrote on Nerdybookclub about this topic)

Want some ideas to help you teach this text? Check out the Discussion Guide here. 

Elana K. Arnold is the award-winning author of many books for children and teens, including Just Harriet, Harriet Spies, The House that Wasn’t There, the Printz Honor winner Damsel, the National Book Award finalist What Girls are Made Of, and the Global Read Aloud selection A Boy Called Bat. She is a member of the faculty at Hamline University’s MFA in writing for children and young adults program, and lives
in Huntington Beach, CA, with her husband, two children, and a menagerie of animals. You can find her online at www.elanakarnold.com

Dung (pronounced Dzung) Ho was born and raised in Hue citadel, Vietnam, where she studied graphic design at the Arts University. She is the New York Times–bestselling illustrator of many books for children, including Joanna Ho’s Eyes That Kiss in the Corners and Laura Ruby’s Me and Ms. Too. She finds inspiration in nature: the beauty of plants, flowers, and leaves. She also loves to draw interesting characters with unique personalities. She now lives in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. When she’s not drawing, she loves spending time cooking (eating), watching movies,
and tending her plants. Visit her at www.behance.net/hanhdung
or follow her on Instagram @dunghanhho.

Read my post about the first book in this series -- Just Harriet

I was given early access to a digital version of the book. 


  1. 📚 Exciting news! The "Harriet Spies" blog tour by Elana K Arnold is a captivating journey that takes readers on an unforgettable adventure. 🕵️‍♀️🔍 From the imaginative mind of the author, the story of Harriet unfolds in a way that keeps you hooked from start to finish. 📖🌟 Arnold's ability to craft compelling characters and intricate plots shines through once again. If you're a fan of mystery, friendship, and the thrill of discovery, this is a blog tour you won't want to miss. Join the tour and immerse yourself in the world of Harriet - you're in for a literary treat! 🎉📌 #HarrietSpiesBlogTour #ElanaKArnold #MysteryAndAdventure


  2. rnold's ability to craft compelling characters and intricate plots shines through once again.


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