Monday, January 6, 2014

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? 1/6/14

I am excited to be a part of the conversation at #IMWAYR! Thank you to SheilaJen and Kellee
 for inspiring and hosting this meme.

Happy New Year to all!  I am hoping that this year brings many amazing literary adventures to you all.

My final week of reading in 2013 included one of my favorite adult reads of the year.  The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd tells the story of Sarah Grimke and the slave that she is given on her eleventh birthday, Hetty "Handful" Grimke.  Very loosely based on the real life abolitionist and suffragist Sarah Grimke, Monk Kidd tells this story in alternating voices, so readers come to know both Sarah and Handful intimately.  This was a book that I didn't want to end simply because I was so emotionally invested in the lives of the characters.

The Ability by M.M. Vaughan is a fun fantasy for middle grade readers. When Chris Lane turns twelve, he is admitted to a special school that develops kids’ mind-reading (and bending) abilities. He and his five classmates must harness their unique powers to save the prime minister, who is under threat from an evil mind master. This is fast paced with sympathetic characters (with the exception of Chris’ mom who is dysfunctional almost beyond belief) and an ending that promises a sequel. The amazing cover is the frosting on the cake!

In 33 Minutes by Todd Hasak-Lowy, middle schooler Sam Lewis dreads the moment when recess arrives because that is when his former best friend has promised he will kick Sam’s butt. It’s somewhat unusual to get a friendship break up story from a boy’s perspective and this portrayal of middle school is spot on. There were times when I really didn’t like the characters in this book, but I think that was the point - thirteen year old boys (and girls) can be dreadful.

H.M Castor's VIII is a psychological study of Henry the 8th, starting when he was a young boy and the “second son” deemed worthless by his father the king. I love history and this behind the scenes look at one of England’s most ruthless leaders was a pretty fascinating read for me.  Castor gets at the heart of what made Henry the 8th who he was and although one still can't quite sympathize with him, his rash and ruthless decisions make some sort of sense in Castor's telling.  This is a great read for YA and adult fans of history.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Laura-busy, busy, busy getting ready for the 11th! The cover for The Ability is awesome, you're so right. There is just something about a good book having a good cover to go along with it! I love the character Chris, he has so much heart. Haven't read the others yet.
    P.S. did you mean to link up on Teach Mentor Texts? I don't think I saw your page there, of course I could have just missed it since there are so many today! See you soon!