Children's Literacy and Reading News Roundup: Mid-August
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Growing Bookworms Newsletter: August 15

JRBPlogo-smallToday I will be sending out the new issue of the Growing Bookworms email newsletter. (If you would like to subscribe, you can find a sign-up form here.) The Growing Bookworms newsletter contains content from my blog focused on children's and young adult books and raising readers. There are 1651 subscribers (a big jump from last time - welcome to all of my new subscribers!). Currently I am sending the newsletter out once every three weeks.

Newsletter Update: In this issue I have five book reviews (one picture book, three middle grade, and one YA), one children's literacy roundup, and two posts wrapping up links that I shared on Twitter. I also published the following posts, which I have not included in the newsletter:

Reading Update: In the past 3+ weeks, I finished four middle grade, four young adult, and three adult titles (one of them more of a short story). It helped that I had a cross-country plane trip with connections (though the presence of my two-year-old certainly cut into my airplane reading time).

  • Maryrose Wood: The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: Book 1: The Mysterious Howling. Balzer + Bray. Middle grade. Completed July 25, 2012, on MP3. My review.
  • Emily Winfield Martin: Oddfellow's Orphanage. Random House. Early middle grade. Completed August 1, 2012. My review.
  • Dan Poblocki: The Ghost of Graylock. Scholastic. Middle grade / middle school. Completed August 3, 2012. My review.
  • Maryrose Wood: The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: Book 2: The Hidden Gallery. Balzer + Bray. Middle grade. Completed August 14, 2012, on MP3. A worthy sequel to Book 1, but not different enough to inspire me to write a second review. I look forward to listening to Book 3 (and beyond). These are excellent audiobooks. 
  • Robin Wasserman: The Book of Blood and Shadow. Knopf Books for Young Readers. Young adult. Completed July 30, 2012. My review.
  • Tim Wynne-Jones: Blink and Caution. Candlewick Press. Young adult. Completed August 6, 2012, on Kindle from library. I enjoyed this one. It's nice to read a dual-narrator book in which the voices are so distinct from one another. 
  • Beth Kephart: Nothing but Ghosts. HarperTeen. Young adult. Completed August 12, 2012, on Kindle from library. In this book, a teenage girl and her father work through some of their grief over the death of the girl's mother by solving a mystery. As a mother of a daughter, I found Nothing but Ghosts quite moving, though the mystery itself was rather tame. Kephart's writing is lyrical and thoughtful. 
  • Emmy Laybourne: Monument 14. Feiwel & Friends. Young adult. Completed August 12, 2012, on Kindle (purchased). I will probably review this one, once I get caught back up from vacation. A fast-paced post-apocalyptic survival story with an intriguing setting and strong characterization, though a bit more of a focus on teenage sexual relationships than I would have personally preferred.
  • Craig Johnson: As the Crow Flies: A Walt Longmire novel. Viking. Adult. Completed July 23, 2012. This is the latest Longmire novel, on par with the high quality of the rest of the series. 
  • Lee Child: Second Son (Kindle Single). Delacorte Press. Adult. Completed August 4, 2012, on Kindle from library. A Kindle short that goes back in time to a pivotal moment in Reacher's adolescence. 
  • Jenn McKinlay: Due or Die: A Library Lovers Mystery. Berkley Prime Crime. Adult. Completed August 12, 2012. The second book in this cozy series about a small town library director who solves crimes. 

I also continued to read picture books and board books aloud to Baby Bookworm. We're currently at 2244 books read aloud for 2012 (including repeats). Current favorites include An Apple Pie for Dinner by Susan VanHecke, Bailey at the Museum by Harry Bliss, Skippyjon Jones by Judy Schachner, and The Best Nest by P.D. Eastman. Our vacation cut into our reading pace a bit. Not that we weren't reading, but we were reading the same 10 books over and over again, and it didn't seem worth tracking them. How do you bookworm-growing parents manage trips? There's only so much space for books (especially hardcovers), but re-reading the same ones gets rather tiresome... 

I'm currently listening to Murder on Fifth Avenue, a Gaslight Mystery by Victoria Thompson and reading False Memory by Dan Krokos. I'm taking a break from the Kindle this week, but I found it invaluable during my trip. Except for during takeoff and landing on flights, all of my vacation reading was done on the Kindle. This was especially helpful because suitcase space was at a premium. 

How about you? What have you and your kids been reading and enjoying? Thanks for reading the newsletter, and for growing bookworms.

© 2012 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved.