Growing Bookworms Newsletter: February 3: Celebrating Words, Authors + Characters Who Kiss
February 03, 2020
Today, I will be sending out a 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 growing joyful learners, especially bookworms. The newsletter is sent out about once a month, depending on how frequently I'm able to post on my blog.
Newsletter Update: Happy February, readers! In this issue I have posts about two of my daughter's bookworm moments (shrieking with joy because two characters kiss and singing happy birthday to authors). I also have a post about her newest literacy milestone: celebrating big words. Despite my previously announced quest for "LESS", I have continued to share links regarding literacy, schools, and the joy of reading each week. I've included the most recent roundup of those links here. The others can be found on my blog.
Reading Update: Since my last update, I read two middle grade, two young adult, and two adult titles (both nonfiction). I read/listened to:
- Janet Tashjian: My Life As A Gamer. Square Fish. Middle Grade Fiction. Completed January 9, 2020. Read aloud to my daughter from library copy.
- Janet Tashjian: My Life As A Ninja. Square Fish. Middle Grade Fiction. Completed January 22, 2020. Read aloud to my daughter from library copy.
- Elizabeth Eulberg: Past Perfect Life. Bloomsbury YA. Young Adult Fiction. Completed January 7, 2020, personal copy. I enjoyed this YA suspense drama (about a girl who finds out that she isn't who she thinks she is) very much. The ending was more satisfying than I had expected, and the characters are quite nuanced.
- David Yoon: Frankly in Love. G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers. Young Adult Fiction. Completed January 16, 2020, on MP3. I liked this one, but found that it dragged on a little bit as an audiobook. This may have been because the events of the premise that I had heard about unfold relatively early in the book, and then it changes into something else.
- BJ Fogg: Tiny Habits: The Small Changes that Change Everything. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Adult Nonfiction. Completed January 22, 2020, on Kindle. This is my new favorite book about habits and behavior (a genre I am admittedly addicted to). I have made a couple of what I think will be lasting changes for myself and my daughter using Fogg's methods, and highly recommend the book.
- Tom DeMarco + Tim Lister: Peopleware: Productive Projects and Teams. Addison-Wesley. Adult Nonfiction. Completed January 25, 2020, personal copy. I read this book for work. It's about how tech company managers should put more emphasis into issues related to people (vs. technical issues).
Although I had a goal at the start of the year to do more reading, that has, sadly, not panned out so far. One reason is that I'm having an audiobook slump, and listening to more podcasts as a result. Another is that I've been extremely busy with my (non-book-related) work. The nonfiction titles highlighted above also took me extra time because I'm trying something new when I read nonfiction. I'm keeping a pile of index cards handy, and writing notes on them when I come across something I want to remember (or act upon). This slows my pace, of course, but I'm hoping it helps me to absorb more.
I'm reading How To Have Impossible Conversations by Peter Boghossian and James Lindsay and Killing November by Adriana Mather for myself. I've just started listening to Tularosa (Kevin Kerney, No. 1) by Michael McGarrity. I'm hoping that this one will break my audiobook slump. I'm reading My Life As A You Youtuber (My Life Series, Book 7) by Janet Tashjian and Jake Tashjian aloud to my daughter. We continue to enjoy the My Life books, and will be sad when we are fully caught up (soon). We have already pre-ordered Book 9, due out in April.
On her own, my daughter continues to re-read her favorite graphic and notebook novels constantly, but hasn't added any new favorites recently. She is also still tackling, in small doses, The Wild Queen: The Days and Nights of Mary Queen of Scots, from Carolyn Meyer's Young Royals series. She mentions it from time to time, but I'm not expecting her to finish it any time soon. I also picked up Gabby Garcia's Ultimate Playbook for her, after Ms. Yingling reviewed the third book in this series. It hasn't completely grabbed her yet, but I think it will. She also brought home Luv Ya Bunches: Book One, by Lauren Myracle from the school library, and picked out Rocky Road by Rose Kent from my overflowing stacks. She's dipping in and out of all of these books, but I'm waiting to see which, if any, really grabs her.
She has refined her graphic novel preferences a bit recently. She told me that other day that she likes graphic novels, but doesn't like comics (e.g. some of the Big Nate books, which are collections of standalone comic strips). This made sense to me - I always like to really immerse myself in a storyline, and rarely find short stories satisfying. I think it's a similar instinct for a more involved story.
She was pleased to see a graphic novel win the Newbery Award this year, though Jerry Craft's New Kid isn't one of the books that she adores or re-reads. I think the recognition of graphic novels across the ALA Awards is a good sign that publishers will continue to focus on graphic novels, which is good news for us.
Wishing you all a happy, healthy, and book-filled February. Thanks for reading, and for growing bookworms!
© 2020 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage.