It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 2/23/15

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a meme started by Book Journey. The folks over at Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers have given it a children’s/YA spin. I thought it would be a fun way to recap last week’s reading and give a sneak peek of my TBR pile.

Reading Slump = OVER! In fact, it seems as if by naming my slump I made it crawl away and disappear. Funny how that works out sometimes.

Last Week’s Books:

I finished the audiobook of Max Brooks’ World War Z this week. I knew about its format, and I knew that it would be quite different from the movie because I saw Max Brooks speak a couple of years ago. I highly recommend listening to this book. It is a full-cast production performed by some big-name actors, and the individual voices really help to “sell” that it is a chronicle of many different peoples’ experiences before, during, and after the zombie apocalypse. In fact, I can see listening to it again in the future. Note: This book counts for my Read Harder Challenge (audiobook)


I picked up The Warrior’s Heart: Becoming a Man of Compassion and Courage by Eric Greitens at my friend’s Scholastic Book Fair preview. I was asked to read it by some ELA teachers in order to recommend it (or not) for use in literature circles. For more information, you can read my post about it.


I listened to another excellent audiobook on my way back and forth from jury duty. Angela Johnson’s The First Part Last won both the Printz and the Coretta Scott King Author Award in 2004. Told in a then-and-now format, teenager Bobby recounts the story of his girlfriend Nia’s pregnancy and the experience of becoming a teenage father. This story is raw and honest and at the same time sympathetic and poetic. The narrator Khalipa Oldjohn does a stellar job in helping to make Bobby’s character come to life. Note: This book counts for my Award-Winning Book Challenge.


Neil Gaiman’s newest work Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances was released earlier this month. Most of the works inside have been previously published, but quite a few were new to me. Although I love his longer works I definitely enjoy his shorter ones, too, as he is able to go in so many different directions and whisk the reader away with him. Among my favorites were  the Doctor Who story, “Nothing O’Clock,” which I could definitely see as an episode; “Black Dog,” which was written especially for this collection; and “Feminine Endings,” which has a number of connections to his wife Amanda Palmer. Note: This book counts for my Read Harder Challenge (book of short stories)


I also read Gaiman’s The Sleeper and the Spindle because it was included in the anthology, but I had the illustrated book which I had not yet read so I decided to go that route. The tale is a mash-up of the Snow White and Sleeping Beauty fairy tales, and Chris Riddell’s exquisite illustrations make it a beautiful and memorable book.

Currently Reading/Listening To:

I guess I’ve been in the mood for a few adult reads lately, but I’m going to get back in the swing of MG/YA soon because I just bought . . .

On Deck:

When I bought Gracefully Grayson at Barnes and Noble I ran into one of my students who was thrilled I was buying it. He wants “first dibs” when it is added to the library 🙂

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12 thoughts on “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 2/23/15

  1. Love the story of running into a student at the bookstore and wanting first dibs! So glad your reading slump is over. I rarely get into a slump but occasionally I do especially after I finish a book I really, really love. Nothing feels quite right to read after that. The First Part Last is one of my favorite YA novels–so tender and heartfelt and important.

  2. Congratulations on kicking that slumps butt! Did you listen to/read Heaven, the book before The First Part Last? Will it matter if you haven’t? World War Z is just such an amazing audiobook! I think I’ve listened to it twice. After reading your review of The Warrior’s Heart, I think it sounds very intriguing. Fish In a Tree and Grayson are on my list of books to read.

    1. I think The First Part Last stands alone just fine. But now I really want to read or listen to Heaven to see what comes before. My guess is that it is the story of the older brother.

  3. My husband gave me a copy of Hansel and Gretel and The Sleeper and the Spindle for Valentine’s. Can’t wait to read both of them. I’m looking forward to reading Trigger Warning as well! 🙂

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