Category Archives: #amreading

#amreading Boldly

Book Report 30

Loser is an endearing story about a boy who’s … a little different. I picked up The Vanishing Game to fill a slot on my A-Z Reading Challenge and was intrigued to find that the Hardy Boys have been dragged into the modern era and equipped with cell phones and contemporary slang. Not too shabby, though this particular mystery had a slap-dash finish. Jungle of Bones is a survival story in which an angry boy behaves stupidly, then has to live long enough to learn from his mistakes. Lots in this about WWII in the Pacific and respecting our veterans.

Are you following me on GoodReads? >>

#amreading Culturally

Book Report 29

Here are three books that celebrate and explore culture and differences. In One Crazy Summer, three girls trade east coast for west coast in order to spend time with their mother. Set in the 70’s, there are many references to the Civil Rights movement. Yang the Youngest and His Terrible Ear is about a Chinese family that’s moved to America. Everyone’s a gifted musician except Yingtao, who’d really like to trade his violin for a baseball glove. And Save Me a Seat alternates perspectives between an American boy named Joe and Ravi, who’s recently arrived from India. Definitely one of my favorite books so far this year!

Are you following me on GoodReads? >>

#amreading Historically

Book Report 28

Sees Behind Trees was a surprise favorite for the year, the story of a Native American boy who’s limited by severe nearsightedness, yet can do things no other person in their tribe can accomplish. Homer Price is a childhood favorite that was fun to reread. I’d forgotten most details, but I definitely remembered that doughnut machine! And We the Children kicks off a serial tale (told in parts). Benjamin Pratt and the Keepers of the School is shaping up to be a contemporary quest & a historical mystery involving secret societies and sailing ships.

Are you following me on GoodReads? >>


#amreading Assortment

Book Report 27

This set makes it obvious that I’d been tackling the more challenging letters for an A-Z Reading Challenge. Zinnia and the Bees is mostly about family and friendships … and anger and isolation … and not giving up. Oh, and yarn-bombing! The Year of the Book is a slice-of-life story about Anna, who is ABC (American-born Chinese), shy, bookish, and a little embarrassed by her mother. The Queen’s Nose (set in England) is about a girl, her uncle, and a magical coin that grants wishes. All you have to do is rub … the queen’s nose.

Are you following me on GoodReads? >>

#amreading Daringly

Book Report 25

The Unknowns is a mystery with thriller tendencies and a misfit cast. I’ve never met a more mathematical read. I’ll confess to reading Viking It and Liking It because I needed a “V” book for my alphabet challenge. But the Time Warp Trio stories are a hoot. I’ve begun collecting this lower middle grade series. Masters of Disaster is full of zany plans that’ll make any mother cringe. Set in a bygone era. I love the charismatic ringleader’s tendency to speak in capitals.

Are you following me on GoodReads? >>

#MGCarousel – Summer Reading Bingo

Summer Reading! Time for a fresh sticky post for my August BINGO board, part of the Summer Reading Challenge for #MGCarousel at, where Elza and I blog about middle grade books.

CJ's Summer Bingo, August


Play along! Grab your August bingo board here >>

Can’t read those tiny book covers? I’ve listed the titles/authors. Continue reading #MGCarousel – Summer Reading Bingo

#amreading Variously

Book Report 24

Olive’s Ocean has a wistful, nostalgic ambiance. On the day before her family leaves for summer vacation, Martha is visited by the mother of a girl in her class who recently died. With Olive on her mind, Martha sees things a little differently. The Dagger Quick is a fast-past adventure of the swashbuckling variety. Vivid and thrilling. And Bliss is a family-centered story of the magical bakery variety. Recipes awry and heartwarming moments.

Are you following me on GoodReads? >>


#amreading Poetry

Book Report 23

Through a series of autobiographical poems, Jacqueline revisits her childhood in Brown Girl Dreaming. Yes, it’s a peek into the civil rights moment, but even more, a celebration of family and beginnings and cherished things and stories. Beautiful. The Poet’s Dog is a short story about two lost children who are led to safety by a dog. And Inside Out & Back Again is the story of a Vietnamese family who leaves behind their war-torn home in Saigon. Poetic snippets give us glimpses of the home Ha loses, the fear and uncertainty, the hunger and grief, the desperation and frustration … and everything else that comes with the total displacement that allowed her, her mother, and her three brothers to survive.

Are you following me on GoodReads? >>