Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Nonfiction Wednesday

  Join Alyson and others at Kid Lit Frenzy for a nonfiction picture book bonanza each week!
The Case for Loving: The Fight for Interracial Marriage
The Case for Loving by Selina Alko, illustrated by Selina Alko and Sean Qualls
I didn't realize before I read this book that the title is a play on words. Before 1967 interracial marriage was illegal in Virginia and sixteen other states, so when Richard(white)and Mildred Loving (African American and Cherokee) returned to their home state of Virginia after marrying in Washington, D.C., they were dramatically arrested in the middle of the night and locked up in jail. They were told they must return to Washington, D.C. if they wanted to remain married, so they did and had three children there. However, they missed home and family, so they decided to fight the law. They won! Interesting Author's Note: a husband and wife team, also an interracial couple, wrote and illustrated the book together. I loved the art - paint and collage. Selina Alko says, when explaining their different styles, "Just like a marriage is the joining of two people, the illustrations for this book could not be achieved individually, but only by Sean and me working together."
Bigfoot is Missing!
I wish I had discovered this book during the school year. One of my 6th grade students was interested in cryptozoology and even wrote a blog series on it! He would have enjoyed this book and probably could have added more information on each creature. We also have a teacher who leads an after school Big Foot Club. He'll need this book! I thought it was a little difficult to read because of the various genres/formats, but I was excited to read that the illustrators were the graphic designers on the Harry Potter films and created all the graphic props, such as the Daily Prophet and the Marauder's Map in the film series. How cool is that?!  
How to Read a Story
How to Read a Story by Kate Messner, illustrated by Mark Siegel
Such a cute book about the steps to reading a story successfully. Endearing illustrations and instructions such as "When the characters talk, whatever's being said...say it in a voice to match who's talking." This is the perfect companion to the beginning-of-the-year mini-lesson on reading strategies and finding the just-right book. I'd also use it as a mentor text for writing creative instructions/directions/how-to texts.


  1. I love every single one of these books, Holly.

  2. There is a very old novel that I loved titled Five Smooth Stones about the heartbreak of interracial relationships. It is so sad that laws like this are still being contested. I'm glad to see the picture book, still haven't read it, or Bigfoot Is Missing which sounds fun & informative. How To Read A Story is wonderful I agree, hope lots of teachers pick it up for the first weeks of school! Thanks, Holly!

  3. Thanks for telling us about The Case for Loving and Bigfoot is Missing - They are both going on our TBR list.

  4. I have not heard of Bigfoot is Missing, looks good!
    I loved The Case for Loving. It's such a timely topic and it was so well written and illustrated. I love that the author/illustrator team is husband/wife - I think it helped feed the passion for this project!