It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 7/29/2019 #imwayr

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Kellee Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen Vincent of Teach Mentor Texts decided to give Kathryn’s (at Book Date) “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?” meme a kidlit focus, reviewing books in children’s literature (picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels, or anything in the world of kidlit). If you enjoy this type of reading, join us every Monday to share what you’ve been reading!

This week has been filled with more hard labor (particularly on landscaping, packing/moving boxes, and painting) and we’re getting closer to having our house on the market. I’ve barely had a moment to myself all week, but thanks to Overdrive’s extensive library of audiobooks I was still able to finish over 1400 pages of reading. ALSO, last week was the first time I didn’t sit down early in the week to read and comment on the entire group’s #imwayr posts. I finally made all the rounds, but YIKES, I’m really off my game this summer. Things are looking better and better around here though, so brighter days are ahead. I’m sure!

It was fun to have such reading variety this week. Hopefully you’ll find something that sparks your interest!


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Sweeping Up the Heart
Kevin Henkes
March 19, 2019
Greenwillow Books

Amelia Albright is a 7th grader who is very disappointed that her father, the Professor, doesn’t want to travel or do anything fun for Spring Break. So instead, she spends the bulk of the week at the art studio where she meets her teacher’s nephew, Casey. Threaded with melancholy, this story normalizes the struggles many youngsters face today, like strained child-parental relationships and the pain and complications of divorce. While it didn’t have a tidy, all-things-are-perfect ending, there were beautiful moments and heart-felt conversations. Amelia expected the most boring and non-eventful summer, but she ends up learning and growing in surprising ways. ❤

You can add it to your Goodreads list HERE.
If you do not have a local bookstore, you may purchase it through IndieBound HERE.
You may also choose to purchase it through Amazon HERE.


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A Monster Like Me
Wendy S. Swore
March 5, 2019
Shadow Mountain

Sophie has a blood tumor that covers nearly half her face. She wasn’t born with it, so she believes she was cursed at some point during her early childhood, turning her into a monster. She carries around her Big Book of Monsters in an effort to learn how to become a human again — especially before her mother realizes what her daughter really is. While the synopsis may seem silly and highly imaginative, at crucial points this story was quite philosophical for a middle grade book. There were chapters from her Big Book of Monsters interspersed between the regular story that share important information about different types of monsters and how to treat/handle them, including the importance of offering forgiveness, having gratitude, etc. Pay special attention to those brief sections!

You can add it to your Goodreads list HERE.
If you do not have a local bookstore, you may purchase it through IndieBound HERE.
You may also choose to purchase it through Amazon HERE.


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No Place Like Here
Christina June
May 21, 2019
Blink

I’ll be totally honest about this one — I picked it up only because of the cover. I’m a sucker for how cover art makes me feel. I don’t think I knew anything about this story before I began reading it, so it was all a surprise. Ashlyn Zanotti is in between a rock and a hard place. Her father is going to prison for tax evasion and her mother is going to rehab for severe depression. So Ashlyn is sent off to stay with her cousin for the summer, working at a retreat center with no access to her cell phone. She’s without her best friend and is REALLY hoping she doesn’t have to return to her boarding school in the fall.

While this book had many of the typical coming-of-age experiences, including a little romance, what I really liked was the fact that it dealt with child/parent relationships, including miscommunication, and the fact that our internal voice inevitably comes directly from the adults who speak to us (and about us) the most. Unfortunately, one of the voices Ashlyn constantly hears is pretty critical of all her choices and judgmental of others she encounters. Will she be able to overcome the humiliation of her father’s actions and her mother’s rehab? More importantly, will she find the courage to speak up for herself and the things that she wants in life?

You can add it to your Goodreads list HERE.
If you do not have a local bookstore, you may purchase it through IndieBound HERE.
You may also choose to purchase it through Amazon HERE.


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The Haunted
Danielle Vega
June 4, 2019
Razorbill

My thanks to Razorbill/Penguin Random House for the Goodreads giveaway that landed this book in my mailbox! This was a fun pleasure-read, this week. I didn’t have huge expectations since I’m not hugely into paranormal, but once I started I found it it very enticing — especially right before bed (which was probably a bad idea prior to dreaming – EEEK!). The main character, Hendricks, had a bad experience with her ex-boyfriend. This is why her family moved her from Philadelphia to a small community in New York. Her parents like to flip houses for a living, but little did they know that the house they purchased, Steel House, is haunted. People were murdered in this house and now their ghosts want revenge. This is a super-fast read! Vega made it difficult to put down as there were more answers to uncover around every corner.

You can add it to your Goodreads list HERE.
If you do not have a local bookstore, you may purchase it through IndieBound HERE.
You may also choose to purchase it through Amazon HERE.


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What We Buried
Kate A. Boorman
February 26, 2019
Henry Holt & Company

What just happened? That’s precisely what I thought when I finished this one. When I reached the end, I started back near the beginning to review and make sure I didn’t miss something important. However, after a while I got on Goodreads and read that many others were just as uncertain, so that’s a relief. What we know is that Liv and Jory Brewer are siblings who have experienced very different lives under the same roof. Liv grew up competing in many beauty pageants while Jory had facial paralysis and struggled to even speak clearly. Both have faced parental abuse in different ways, but neither can remember some important details of their childhood AND their last few days. The majority of this book takes place in conversations and memories while the two siblings are on a long car ride. If you decide to read this one, we really should compare notes to see if we agree on what really happened!

You can add it to your Goodreads list HERE.
If you do not have a local bookstore, you may purchase it through IndieBound HERE.
You may also choose to purchase it through Amazon HERE.


To Be Read:

I’m finally writing my review of The Friendship Lie later this week and I hope to start You’d Be Mine by Erin Hahn. And somewhere, SOME way, I hope to squeeze in another book from my #MustReadin2019 list — just not sure what, yet. 🙂

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Reading Challenge Updates: 

Goodreads Challenge 2019 – 178/200
#MustReadin2019 – 22/42


20 thoughts on “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 7/29/2019 #imwayr

  1. No Place Like Here sounds interesting, I enjoyed your comment about the inner voice. I also appreciated what you said about cover art, and I have to admit that Sweeping Up the Heart’s cover does not do it for me, and I think that is why I haven’t sought out that one. Your description likely does it more justice. Thanks for all the shares.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I actually felt the same way about the cover of Sweeping Up the Heart. After reading it, I understand what it is, but it doesn’t look enticing. There are some books, however, that can lure me just by the cover. Thanks for visiting, Aaron!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Your post here was worth the read for this phrase: “our internal voice inevitably comes directly from the adults who speak to us.”
    I love audiobooks when I am working. Isn’t it amazing both how much reading and work you get accomplished!
    I want to read Sweeping Up the Heart, but I am already overwhelmed by how many books I have.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That phrase really makes me aware of how I speak to my children. I want them to believe in themselves and trust their abilities! It really is amazing how much work I can get done while listening. This is how I survived scraping, sanding, priming, and painting our garage in the mega-hot sun. I was able to tune out much of my discomfort by escaping into another world. And I hear you on book overwhelm. I sadly turned in another two books this week, knowing I just couldn’t get to them this summer. I guess it happens to us all… Thanks for dropping by, Cheriee!

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  3. I’m very excited to see the new Kevin Henkes book. I will be interested in seeing what you think about it.

    It sounds like you have been uncommonly busy. Everyone understands if you don’t visit as much during times like this.

    Have a lovely week!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Deb. We’ve lived in this home for over 13 years and it’s the only home our 5 children have ever known. So decluttering and repairing and staging has been so much work. But there’s also the emotional component that I’m battling. Just have to keep pressing on. Thank you for swinging by!

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  4. Considering Sweeping Up The Heart, A Monster Like Me & others, it makes me sad that so many children face such challenges. I enjoyed Sweeping Up the Heart, will put the others on my list, Shaye! I know you’re working so hard on your house, but perhaps you’re now on the downward swing, to be done? Best wishes this week!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I completely agree on your challenges comment, Linda. It’s so sad to learn of this, but I’m grateful they now have books to find themselves in. I hope, hope, HOPE we are on the downward swing. The outdoor work has been strenuous, but once I finish just a few more smaller yard jobs, we will be focusing on the inside of the home — paint touch-ups, replacing broken trim, repairing any floor damage, fixing non-working items, etc. I have a 4-paged list of things to do, so we definitely have our work cut out for us. I can’t believe I thought we might have our home ready to view by the 2nd week of July. Now I’m just hoping for August 10th! If we can’t get it on the market this summer then we’ll push forward to next summer, knowing most of the hard work is done. YAY!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. The Friendship Lie is great for readers who enjoy middle grade relationship drama. The backdrop of a recycling project, makes it a fresh book for kids today. Hope you enjoy it, too. You’ve got several middle grade reads that I haven’t gotten too, yet. Thanks for sharing and have a great week!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We keep thinking we’ll be done this week. Or this week. Or next week. There’s just so much we keep uncovering. So if we can’t get it on the market by August, we’ll just have to hope for the best in the fall/winter. But homes don’t sell that well while it’s snowing. Boo! Thanks for swinging by, Lisa, and I hope it goes well for you, too!

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    1. Oh I hope you enjoy Sweeping Up the Heart. The cover isn’t that beautiful, but the story was pretty special. And thanks so much for your comments on my header. I was just wondering a couple weeks ago if it’s time for me to update it with new books. Thanks for visiting, Alex!

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  6. The last time I had to sell a house we got an offer from a developer who wanted to tear the place down and build a McMansion. So ZERO prep for viewing. I may never move again because that sure won’t happen again..

    Lots of memories in 13 years — good luck packing everything up and best wishes for your family. Thanks for the reviews — I always think I get a good sense of what the book is about. And usually you make me want to read the book!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh my goodness, that would be insane to get an offer from a developer. But I have to admit it would also kinda break my heart. We have loved this home and some of my children were even born right in this house (my last three children were home birthed). Hopefully we’ll be ready to move forward by mid-month. I’m praying that the right buyer has been waiting for a home like this and will be ready to jump on it as soon as they see it. And thank you so much for your sweet comments about my reviews. I love this community and how much I learn every week. ❤️

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