Monday, June 1, 2015

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki at Unleashing Readers cohost It's Monday! What Are You Reading?  Be sure and stop by to participate or see what others are reading and recommending this week.

What I Read This Week

The Missing Pieces of Me by Jean Van Leeuwen

Weezie is a ten year old who just cannot please her momma.  No matter what she does, it is not right or it is not good enough.  Her momma has kept the identity of Weezie's father from her, and Weezie thinks that if she could just find him, things would be better.  Or would it?

I can see middle grade readers connecting with Weezie through her sense of adventure, her desire to be loved, and her need to find all of the pieces which make up who she really is.

Honey by Sarah Weeks

Secrets are a terrible thing to live with, especially when you live in a small town and everyone knows the secret but you.  Melody's life has always been just her and her dad, and it has been a good life.  One day she hears her dad on the phone call someone "Honey," and it appears that everyone in town knows about Honey - except Melody.  Melody becomes determined to find out just who Honey is and in the end, finds a sweet surprise.  

This was the first novel I had read by Sarah Weeks, and I see why she is so well-liked.  With only 160 pages, I can see this being one of those books I book talk in the beginning of the year to jumpstart my students' reading.

How to Speak Dolphin by Ginny Rorby

This book was my favorite of the week.  The author has woven autism and animal rights into a beautiful story which I think many of my students will enjoy.  

Lily is the main caretaker of her little brother, Adam, who has autism.  Because of this, she has few friends and little time for herself.  To try and find Adam the help he needs, their dad enrolls Adam in a dolphin-assisted therapy program.  While Adam participates in the program, Lily begins to see the downfall of keeping dolphins in captivity and eventually becomes pulled between finding help for her brother and giving Nori, the dolphin, her freedom.

If You're Reading This by Trent Reedy

As I was reading this book, I could hear the country songs The Boys of Fall and If You're Reading This being played at the same time.  Mike is a high school student who wants to play football (against his mother's wishes) while coming to grips with the death of his father who was a soldier in Afghanistan,  Through a series of letters and videos, Mike's dad gives him "life" missions and helps him understand that his own dreams are important.  I really want to recommend this to my 6th graders, but I feel it is more for grades 8-10.  

On My Reading Radar

Happy Reading!


  1. Great collection of books. I think that you would like Rain Reign, and it would be great to pair it with How to Speak Dolphin. Have a great week.

  2. I just added How to Speak Dolphin and If You're Reading This to my next book order for my Middle School/High School Media Center. Thanks for sharing. BTW I agree with Melanie that Rain Reign is another great story. Come see my week here. Happy reading!

  3. If You're Reading This does get checked out m ore by my 8th graders. I hadn't seen the Missing Pieces of Me. Have to take a look. Lots of good books.

  4. I haven't read anything by Sarah Weeks--think I'll start with Honey.

  5. I'm glad Sarah Weeks has made it on your radar! So B It is one of those books that regularly gets recommended by one student to another. Revolution was one of my favourite books last year. I just adore Deborah Wiles anyway though! The Missing Pieces of Me sounds like a heart breaker.

  6. These all sounds like lovely middle grade book, Leigh Anne. I will certainly put them on my list. I have Jack on my stack, too, can't wait. I loved Rump!

  7. Jack is such a fun book. We are skyping with Liesl in 2 days. I'm rereading Rump right now in preparation.
    Revolution is soon for me too :) :) :)
    I read Pie by Sarah Weeks and really liked it. I have Honey, but not sure when I'll get to it.
    Looking forward to my #bookaday!