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review 2019-01-19 02:45
My cat kept interrupting this post
My Side of the Mountain - Jean Craighead George

I really needed a win after starting (and giving up on) 3 separate books so when I picked up My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George I felt pretty confident considering it was a Newberry Honor winner. The introduction made me laugh because it was all about the author's experience running away from home and coming back very shortly afterward. (I was gone such a short amount of time when I was a kid that my mom didn't even know that I'd left.) This book gave me strong Hatchet vibes from the outset. Our main character, Sam Gribley, doesn't so much as run away as inform his family that he is going to leave and live off the ancestral family land in the Catskills. Like most parents, they think he's bluffing and that he'll be back shortly...but he doesn't come back. He actually makes it to the Catskills and proceeds to become self-sufficient. He learns how to strike flint for fire, smoke out a tree to make a warm home, train a falcon to hunt wild game, sew a deerskin outfit, and develop varied (and tasty) recipes. This is a story of survival, independence, and the beauty of nature. It turned out to be exactly what I needed to get past the duds I'd recently picked. If you (or a reader in your life) enjoy fast paced adventure stories that are heavily descriptive (with intermittent pencil illustrations) My Side of the Mountain is for you. 8/10

 

What's Up Next: Warren the 13th and the All-Seeing Eye by Tania del Rio & Will Staehle

 

What I'm Currently Reading: The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova (reread) and The Library Book by Susan Orlean

Source: readingfortheheckofit.blogspot.com
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review 2019-01-18 02:33
Amal - audiobook
Amal Unbound - Aisha Saeed,Priya Ayyar

Audience: Middle Grade

Format: Audiobook

Library Copy

 

 

I watched from the window as the boys tumbled out of the brick schoolhouse across the field from us.

-first sentence

 

Amal loves school and her dream is to one day go to college and become a teacher. But one day, a chance encounter disrupts her life. She becomes an indentured servant to the family of her village’s corrupt landlord. Amal plans to work until she pays off her family’s debt, but when she finds out the truth, what will she do?

 

This story takes place in Pakistan and is meant for a middle-grade audience. Amal is a fantastic strong female character; she knows what she wants, she knows what is right, and she isn’t afraid to stand up for what she believes in.

 

I listened to the audio and the narrator, Priya Ayyar did a wonderful job. I’m counting this for “A” for the HA a-z challenge on Goodreads.

 

Recommended to grades 4-6.

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review 2019-01-13 17:41
I'm still glad I was an only child
Dear Sister - Alison McGhee,Joe Bluhm

Dear Sister by Alison McGhee (with illustrations by Joe Bluhm) was a happy accident. It happened to be returned while I was working at circulation and when I flipped through it I was intrigued enough to check it out for myself. The book is written in a series of letters and drawings from a boy who has just been saddled  blessed with a baby sister. His parents want him to write to her so they can put it in her baby book but he has his own ideas of what to write. From the start, his letters and drawings are quite hostile and he makes a point of saying that the 'wardens' have forced him into contributing. Their relationship is typical of an older sibling who has no interest in catering to an annoying, screaming infant/toddler/preschooler. Their age difference is about 8 years which explains a lot of the animosity. He always refers to her as 'sister' because the name he had picked out for her (and which wasn't used) was so good that he'd hate to slip up and call her that because then she'd be sad that it wasn't her name. This is one of those perfect little books that shock you when you realize they're not more in demand. It felt totally authentic and the illustrations were absolutely fantastic. They were a mix of childlike drawings which aged up with the character and a few realistic looking pencil drawings from a third person standpoint. The whole story is heartwarming and the ending was so sweet that I actually cried. What a great little book! 10/10

 

A/N: I discovered that Joe Bluhm illustrated one of my favorite William Joyce books The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore and now I'm on a mission to find more of his work. No wonder I liked the drawings in this so much! XD

 

Source: Amazon.com

 

                                  Source: Amazon.com

 

What's Up Next: I'm waiting on another volume of the Elfquest Archives so that I can hopefully do my reviews in one post. We shall see...

 

What I'm Currently Reading: The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova (reread)

Source: readingfortheheckofit.blogspot.com
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text 2019-01-11 01:21
Crazy Rich Asians
Crazy Rich Asians - Kevin Kwan

Pop Sugar 2019 Challenge prompts:

Book about a family

Book by an author from Asia 

Book by an author whose first and last name begin with the same letter

Book involving a wedding

 

I had high hopes for this book, but I just couldn't get into it. There were far too many names and titles thrown at me with every turn. I can't keep the people straight. And if I can't keep them straight, it's not possible to connect and feel anything for them.

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review 2019-01-09 18:32
The Hate U Give
The Hate U Give - Angie Thomas

I don't know how to feel about this book. It had a good message and the topic is super important. But there was something off-putting about Starr and her attitude. I have an attitude, too, but I don't go around bottling and exploding on others. If she would have just told her classmates what happened, a lot of drama could have been avoided. But she just bottled and overflowed. Not cool. I also feel like she had a touch of PTSD. 

 

Also, stop talking about Tumbler. Omg. 

 

A good book but I don't think it's as amazing as so many say it is. 

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