Now if you don’t live in Massachusetts the Boston Marathon might not be a big deal to you. In fact, it’s not really a big deal to me either. I get the day off work because barely anyone can make it to work with all the road closures. I’ve never gone to watch it before, but yesterday I just happened to catch it right when the winners were crossing the finish line. And let me tell you, an American woman won for the first time since 1985. Isn’t that amazing?? There were so many books coming out the past few months for kids about women runners in the marathon so I thought I’d share some of those now.
You Should Meet : Roberta Gibb (a ready-to-read level 3 title). There are so many other great You Should Meet titles also, so check those out if you like this one. Roberta, or Bobbi, Gibb was the first woman to ever run the Boston Marathon. There’s also two picture book titles that came out the same month about her as well. Girl Running and The Girl Who Ran.
There’s also this one. Admittedly, not about a woman.
Dream Big is the story of Dave McGillivray, the Boston Marathon race director. This is his story about becoming an athlete when you are small and everyone around you is big.
Honestly. Harry Potter has been out for 20 years? How is this possible? I love these books. People always say, oh well you probably love them because you read them when you were a kid. Which is true, sort of. I was in my mid teens actually. I started reading them when the first movie came out, which was about the time the fourth book was released (2001 ish). And the fourth book is my favorite, by the way. Anyway, Brian Selznick, of Hugo Cabret, Wonderstruck and the Marvels was asked to illustrate the 20th anniversary covers. He’s known for his black and white pencil drawings so I wasn’t super surprised by how they look. They are typical Selznick. But also beautiful. When you lay them all out the make a mural type illustration. Which is cool.
But I also like the paperback copies that when put together make a picture of Hogwarts on the spines. Since this is usually how they’ll be displayed (spine out) on a shelf I find that to be more practical than the way Selznick did it which is an image that’s put together when the covers facing up. But hey, it’s still cool.
Related post. Harry Potter is scary. Some kids aren’t ready. Don’t force them if you think they’re too young. They have all their lives to read them.
Do you have a favorite book from childhood? Have you read it as an adult? Was it just as good?
I don’t know if this was my favorite book but it was so meaningful to me. I talked about it two years ago when I posted about why you should read aloud to kids at any and all ages. My dad read Johnny Tremain to me when I was little. I’m pretty sure I didn’t have a sibling at the time which means I was under 8 years old. I re-read it in college some time and then wrote about the experience for my grad school essay but haven’t since then. I meant to read it last year for a reading challenge prompt (a book you loved as a child) but I never got around to it. I should definitely pick it up again to see if it’s just as enthralling. Some part of me thinks it won’t be and that it was the experience of being read to that I enjoyed the most.
Do you have a favorite book from childhood?
These questions came from the Lit Chat deck of cards.
Here are some newly released children’s books that I have loved. I suppose you could consider it a holiday guide.
Rulers of the Playground by Joseph Kuefler is essentially a book about being bossy. One morning Jonah decides he wants to be King of the Playground. But Lennox does not agree. She’s going to be Queen. And back and forth it goes. I loved the pictures, cartoon 1950s looking.
Stay : a girl, a dog, and a bucket list by Kate Klise. You may know the Klise’s from their Old Cemetery Road series. At first glance I thought this book was going to be about a dog that dies, which are books I do not read. But it’s not. And although the dog does not die it is about him getting older and it was still very emotional. Good as a conversation piece for pets you may have gotten as a couple before you became a family who are getting older as your real human kids are growing.
Littles : and how they grow by Kelly DiPucchio. This book is adorable. I have a go-to book for baby showers (Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes by Mem Fox) but this one might become my back up. It would also be good as a book to purchase for siblings who are getting a new brother or sister since it talks a lot about what babies do. Love the illustrations and the diversity.
The Map of Good Memories by Fran Nuño. I remember reading this book and thinking it was wonderful and then I read even more about it and now think it’s amazing! This book is about Zoe who, due to war, flees the city she lived in her whole life for a new place. The night before her family leaves she illustrates a map with all of her favorite places so she can remember them. The thing that made this book amazing is that it’s made from stone paper. This means the pages use no trees, no water and no bleach. How can this be?! I have no idea, but it’s awesome. It also comes in Spanish and Arabic.
The Story Orchestra : The Nutcracker by Jessica Courtney-Tickle. This is just the best. They had a lot of these books when I was a kid. You turn the page and push a button and an animal sound comes out or a vehicle sound. This book has the sounds of the Nutcracker. I love the Nutcracker. The Story Orchestra seems to be a series and so far there is one other, The Four Seasons. So if you like classical music these might be good gifts.
I posted the previous Wrinkle in Time trailer here and then my review of the book (which I just read a few months ago). Check out the new trailer!
I read some graphic novels for kids recently and loved them!
Pashmina by Nidhi Chanani. I kept seeing this gorgeous cover at bookstores so I was very pleased to pick it up at the library. Pri and her mother live in California. Pri finds a pashmina in a secret trunk in her house that when worn takes you to see you desire. When Pri wears it, it takes her to India. Pri wants to know more about her father, who she thinks is in India but her mother refuses to talk about him or why she came to America. By mysterious circumstances her aunt calls and requests Pri come to India, and her mother relents. This story is about learning about yourself and what you want and even learning answers to questions you may have wish you never asked.
Swing it, Sunny! by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm. This is the second book about Sunny. The first is Sunny Side Up, where she is sent to her grandfather’s 55+ community for the summer. She’s not sure why she’s spending her summer there but she finds out that it’s because her brother Dale is acting out and he needs attention from her parents. In this second book Dale is sent away to what looks to be a military school. Sunny and her family have to change their dynamic now that one of the siblings is missing. These books are real life! I did just notice that on the Sunny Side Up cover she is in the same position as this cover but on a pool float and now she’s in a fall scene. Perhaps there will be winter and spring covers coming soon.
Jane by Aline McKenna is probably technically for young adults. It is a retelling of Jane Eyre through graphic novel and during current day rather than the 1800s. Now, I love Jane Eyre. I read The Flight of Gemma Hardy last year which is also (supposedly) a retelling of Jane Eyre. I did not enjoy it so I was a bit wary when picking this one up. However, this one was good! I loved the art, Jane in this book is an artist. I also liked the way they transferred the mother character. You can’t really claim insanity when locking someone up in an attic in 2017 so I think they did a good switch with that. I liked the relationship with Rochester. The only thing I didn’t like is the brother-in-law angle. It was a bit much. You’ll know what I mean if you read it.