It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 3/14/16

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.

Last Week’s Books:

I read Dogs of War by Sheila Keenan because I wanted to feature a historical fiction graphic novel during our schools’ monthly Books and Bites. I thoroughly enjoyed the three tales contained within: of Boots, a medic dog during WWI; of Loki, a wily sled dog in Greenland during WWII; and of Sheeba, a scout dog in Vietnam. Each story emphasized not only the dog’s importance in our military efforts, but also the special relationship each dog had with it’s soldier. Exciting plot points and thrilling illustrations makes this a graphic novel sure to please middle grade readers.


I was very excited to read The Basic Eight by Daniel Handler, as I have read and loved other works by him (and Lemony Snicket). In some places, I have seen this book labeled “YA,” while in others “adult.” I would have to weigh in on the side of adult, as the characters are in high school, but the novel is really a satire of high school drama taken to the nth degree. It is a strange twist-up of a murder mystery, as the reader knows the killer right away, and then victim soon after, but it is the “why” and “how” that are revealed through the story. The characters are very over-done portraits of privileged and pretentious teens, who host dinner parties and experiment with absinthe. There was definitely a lot of dark humor in this book, which I loved. But it seemed overly-long at times, as the narrator, Flannery Culp, leads readers up to the crime day-by-day with her journal entries. I did not see the twist at the end coming, and when I went back to try to read sections and find clues, I wound up deciding I just didn’t want to read that much of the book again. And so I will say I liked this debut novel and can see how Handler developed his style and dark humor into his later works. This books counts for my Surprise Me! Challenge for February.


I have really been getting into audiobooks lately, and I thoroughly enjoyed Yes Please, a memoir written and read by Amy Poehler. Although her era of Saturday Night Live is one with which I am only passingly familiar, I’m a late-to-the-party fan of her TV show Parks and Recreation. In this book, Poehler not only recounts the comedy and acting jobs that got her where she is today, but she also shares thoughts and advice on things like parenting, divorce, and living in Chicago, NYC, and LA. I found myself doing a lot of laughing as I listened on my way to and from work, which is definitely a good thing. This book counts for my Read Harder Challenge 2016–listen to an audiobook that won an Audie Award).


Fables Vol. 3: Storybook Love is part of my continued quest to reread some early volumes and finish the others in this now-complete graphic novel series. I love the fairy-tale world that Willingham has created, and I love that I am devoting time to reading something just because I love it.

Currently Reading/Listening To:

On Deck: 


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