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 was not expecting to love Something Real by Heather Demetrios as much as I did. In fact, when it came up as my April Surprise Me! book, I barely remembered adding it. Thank goodness for kismet, fate, etc. because this is one of the nest realistic fiction books I have read this year. It chronicles the life of high school senior Chloe Baker who is FINALLY living like a normal teenager since her family’s reality show Baker’s Dozen was canceled four years ago. Chloe, who was then called Bonnie, and her twelve siblings and parents lied liek on-screen until the parents’ divorce and Bonnie’s “incident” resulted in the show’s cancellation. Imagine Chloe’s horror, when she arrives home from school early one day to see camera crews and producers swarming everywhere, as her mom has decided to restart the show with her new husband. All the normalcy Chloe has relished is about to come to an end, which could spell disaster for her friendships and budding romance with Patrick. Oh, how I loved the richness of Chloe’s character and her response to her struggles. Her relationship with her brother Benny, also a senior, was complex and interesting and important to her sanity. I loved to hate not only the producer, Chuck, but also Chloe’s mom (most of the time). I think that teens will find this look behind the scenes of a reality TV show an eye-opening one, and it might change the minds of those who have been dreaming of that kind of fame. This counts for my Surprise Me! Challenge 2016.
Serafina and the Black Cloak by Robert Beatty is a wonderfully fresh and creepy middle grade novel with great characters and atmosphere. Serafins has always been different from other children, and not only because she secretly lives in the basement of the Biltmore with her pa. I listened to the audiobook and at the very beginning I kept getting the sense that all of Beatty’s descriptions of Serafina reminded me of a cat–and that makes perfect sense later in the book. Two important things happen at the beginning of this book to change Serafina’s life forever: she makes her first friend, Braeden, nephew of the Vanderbilts; and she sees a man in a black cloak envelope a young girl and make her disappear. Soon, other children go missing as well, and Serafina is determined to figure out the identity of the man and put an end to his attacks. Serafina gets herself into some pretty harrowing confrontations, and the man and the cloak itself are quite evil forces to be reckoned with. And while I guessed much of the ending, it was still fascinating to see how it all played out.This will be an exciting read for my junior high students. This book counts for my Horror Challenge 2016.
Currently Reading/Listening To:
Ghost Road Blues audio became available from library again. Hoping I can finish it before my loan period runs out again.