Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Shooting the Moon written by Frances O'Roark Dowell

I don't think I have read a book about the Vietnam War ever. I have read a couple dealing with the Iraq War, written by Phil Kiver and a biography by a young guy enlisting in the National Guard but ending up in a engineer company transporting stuff from base to base. The title is Ghosts of War written by Ryan Smithson. Everyone makes decisions based on what they feel is right.

This book Shooting the Moon has a young guy enlisting in the Army before graduating from high school. He is the son of the Colonel in charge of Fort Hood in Texas. The Colonel tries to get the son to void his contract with the military. But true to him self the son TJ goes off to Vietnam. Being an avid amateur photographer TJ is constantly taking rolls of pictures, sending them home to be developed. His sister Jamie learns to develop the film but doesn't show the pictures to her Mom. Then one day the Colonel receives a call, its up to you to find out what happens to TJ and how Jamie keeps his photography alive. Does the title fit the story? Enjoy I did.

This book hits so close to home, it was painful to read the book at times. I remember playing war games as I grew up in the 60's and 70's. I remember gathering with family to send my cousins off to war. There were good times when they all came home safe and bad times when letters got scare.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

After Tupac and D Foster written by Jacqueline Woodson

This is another bookon the list for Virginia Readers Choice and 3 time Newbery Honor Author

I didnt think I would enjoy this book but I did. In this book the 3 girls, morn Tupac, when he first was shot, when he was in jail and by long distance when Tupac is killed. D Foster enters into Neeka's and her best friend world. But life changes for Neeka and her best friend after Tupac and D Foster. How doese the title fit the book? Even I feel a loss now that D has her mother in her life once again.

Enjoy the book, I did.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

T 4 written by Ann Clare LeZotte

T4 is another book in the Virginia Readers Choice list for 2010- 2011.

I was drawn to this book because I had a student point out to me the the title in a quick glance looked like a swastika. I was also drawn to this book because the book is written in free verse. Free verse is easily read because the story is told in poetry form. I will be recommending this book the the 8th grade teachers who have the students read Diary of Anne Frank. That is a good story to read to get the feeling of being in Nazi Germany. T4 gives another glimpse of Nazi Germany. This story has the doctors taking people with disabilities placing them in hospitals with the promise they will be safe only to have these people murdered. If you have only read the Diary of Anne Frank, please take the time to read T4. It is a quick read because of the style the book is written in, free verse. My eyes were opened by this story, I was sadden to think my youngest son may not have survived those doctors and hospitals because of his disability. It brings the Holocaust Museum to life.

Read T4 its another story of the atrocities that took place during WWII.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Little Audrey written by Ruth White

This is a Virginia Readers Choice book for 2010-2011

I gave my book club members a chance to read a few of the new books for next school year. I wanted to get their opinions before I had a chance to read them. Today I read Little Audrey, I had too one of my students have been weekly me if I read the book, so when Monday comes I can tell her I read the book.

I used to live in southwest Virginia for approximately 5 years. I taught in Wise County, I tried to locate Jewell Valley but I wasn't able to locate this area on the internet. This story is told by the oldest sister, Audrey.This story just gives a short glimpse into Audrey's life, living in a company camp, shopping at the company store, not having enough to eat and a Mom not always 'there' and a Dad that drank. This kind of life wasn't much different for families working the mines just a few years ago. This story brings back memories of life in Wise County. A good story, true to life in a coal company camp.

Curse of the Bane written by Joseph Delaney

This is Book 2 of The Last Apprentice

This is the second bank in the series. The Spook's brother has died. Gregory and Tom need to travel to Priestown for the funeral. Gregory needs to finally get rid of the Bane but their plan gets side tracked do to the Quisitor. Alice the girl with pointy shoes gets in the way. How does Gregory and Tom finaly destory the Bane? Alice is a witch does she get put into a pit?

Read this book to the find the answers. Enjoy the book, the 3rd book in the series is next, Night of the Soul Stealer.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Sparks written by Graham McNamee

This book brought tears to me and my heart ached. I somehow understood better what it was like to be in a Special Class (needs), myon was placed in a special education class, he never spoke about anyone harassing him or as others say teasing! This book opened my eyes and I know I have a better understanding about his frustrations in life.

Last year Todd was the smartest kid in Special Needs; this year, he was promoted to the regular fifth-grade class, where they call him “Retardo” and “Braindead.” He’s really trying to keep up, but he’s in danger of being sent back to Needs. Then a history project about the pygmy More...Ota Benga inspires Todd to use his secret strength–imagination.

Being promoted also meant Todd had to leave his pals behind in Special Needs, even his best friend, Eva. Why can’t Eva understand that they can’t be friends anymore? Why can’t he stop missing her? What’s the right answer to that?

Saturday, June 5, 2010

The Sea of Monsters written by Rick Riordan

Book 2 in the Percy Jackson series

Percy is in the 7th grade it has been a quiet year no monsters around. A dodge ball game changes all that Percy's classmates turn into cannibal giants. Annabeth arrives bearing bad news the magical borders surrounding Camp Half Blood have been poisoned and unless a cure is found the only safe haven for demigods will be destroyed. Why doesn't Annabeth trust the Cyclops? What does Percy and Annabeth need to get to have Camp Half Blood? What does Clarisse need to prove?

Mister Monday written by Garth Nix

Arthur is given the minute key and he is the heir to 'the will'. Before he entersinto a mysterious house his world has come down with a sleeping virus. Inside the house Arthur unravels the secrets of the key and discover his true fate. Does Athur find a cure for the sleeping virus? What role does he have to play in the second realm? This book is the first of the 7 days of the week.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Matilda Bone written by Karen Cushman

Matilda is left in Blood and Bone Alley, where she has come to assist Red Peg the Bonesetter. Matilda is alone in her belief that prayer and study are the only worthy pursuits. Poor Matilda has had a shelter life living at the manor where she was instructed by Father Leufredus, she knows little if anything how to help Peg.

Matilda's story is fascinating as she learns and lives in Blood and bone Alley, I liked the Matilda's story, a good read.

Does Father Leufredus ever come back for Matilda? Does Matilda adjust to her new life?

The Coven written by Cate Tiernan

This is Book 2 of Sweep

Morgan finds out she is adopted but who were her birth parents? How did Morgan learn this, is she a blood witch? How strong of a witch is Morgan? Why does Selene Belltower have a book of shadows written by her birth mother? What does Cal know?

The Last Apprentice written by Joseph Delaney

This is Book 1 of the Last Apprentice Series; Revenge of the Witch

I enjoyed this book, the book moves quickly without being to descriptive. Tom is in training to be a Spook. But just what is a Spook? What has this to do with being the 7th son of a 7th son? What had Tom learned about witches that might have him worried when he takes Alice to her aunt's house?

Now to get the second book of the series to read.