Monday, October 26, 2015

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

These are memes started by Teach Mentor Texts and Book Journey, and I'm excited to participate, along with many other bloggers, in reviewing books I read the previous week.  I'll be reviewing picture books through adult books.
The Running Dream

This is one of those books in my classroom library that I hadn't read, but kids raved about and recommended. I finally got around to listening to it on audio. I can see now why they loved it so much. Jessica, a track star at her school, loses her leg in a bus accident and thinks she will never run again. When she returns to school, her teacher seats her next to Rosa, a girl in a wheelchair with cerebral palsy whom everyone seemed to ignore. Jessica realizes she's wicked smart in math and fun to be around. They pass notes back and forth, and Rosa tutors Jessica to help save her math grade. Eventually they become friends. The two of them make an unlikely running team, but they end up surprising and inspiring everyone. This is a great follow up to our 5th grade common read, OUT OF MY MIND.

The Seventh Most Important Thing
This book grabbed me at the first paragraph and never let go. I'm not quite sure what it was, but this story made me teary throughout the whole thing. Maybe it was Arthur's obvious pain, or the Junk Man's compassion, or that beautiful things can be made from ugly things, or that everything changes when you know someone's story, or that I love stories of redemption and spiritual thinking, or any number of qualities that make this book special. Whatever it was, it moved me. It reminded me of Nickel Bay Nick and Lost in the Sun.  I just started it as a read aloud with my sixth graders to complement our Social Responsibility and Leaving a Legacy theme topic this quarter.
The Hired Girl
The Seventh Wish


  1. I have The Seventh Most Important Thing in my pile of library books right now. I'd like to get to The Hired Girl soon, the author will be at NCTE!

  2. Love love love The Running Dream. I recommend it all the time. I'm eager to read Pearsall's book, I've heard some really great things about it.

  3. It's always so exciting when kids get excited about a book and want to recommend it or talk about it - you know you've found a winner! :)

  4. The Running Dream is fabulous. I am glad you enjoyed it! I sat next to a man on a plane who was reading it. He said to me, "This young adult literature field is really fascinating. This book is really good." He picked the right person to say this to. We spent the rest of the flight talking about books!

  5. The Seventh Most Important Thing and The Running Dream sound like books I must read. Thanks for letting us know about them!

  6. We are reading Th Hired Girl Too. Isn't wonderful that your students were able to recommend a book to you? Can't wait to read The Running Dream

  7. Will look for The Running Dream and The Seventh Most Important Thing, Holly. Thanks very much. I just reviewed The Hired Girl! Hope you enjoy it!

  8. The Hired Girl has been receiving quite a lot of love recently - I am definitely intrigued! :)