Thursday, April 15, 2010

What I've Been Reading

No time today for a lengthy post, but I didn't want the week to go by without a post. In no particular order, here's a look at my recent reads.


A *lovely* gem of a book. Don't know why I resisted reading this for so long. A story about cats with wings sounds weird, but it's a delightful story. This is the first in the series.

To Come and Go Like Magic (new book)

This is an excellent coming-of-age novel set in Appalachian Kentucky during the 1970s. Not quite YA, but in the older age range of our children's collection. Katie Pickard Fawcett is a northern Virginia author!

The Linden Tree

A quiet, sweet, and affecting story about moving on after a loss. The storyline with Katy Sue's aunt threw me for a loop, but that was probably not very uncommon back then.

After Ever After (new YA)

I'm a superfan of Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie, so I was really excited when I learned about this sequel. Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie looks at the effect of cancer on the (older) sibling, Stephen. After Ever After, on the other hand, is told from Jeff's point of view. Jeff is now in the eighth grade; the cancer treatments have left him with learning disabilities and some physical disabilities. Books about children and teens going through cancer treatments are nothing new; After Ever After is unique in that it, to paraphrase Jeff, tells what happens when the spaghetti dinner and car wash fundraisers are over. It's a remarkable, heartfelt, heartbreaking, and amazing read. I read it in one night.

Borrowed Names: Poems About Laura Ingalls Wilder, Madam C.J. Walker, Marie Curie, And Their Daughters (new YA)

Laura Ingalls Wilder, Madam C.J. Walker, and Marie Curie were all born in the same year. These extraordinary women had daughters who struggled to create their own identities separate from their mothers' extraordinary lives. I really enjoyed this one.

Won't Know Till I Get There

This is an older Walter Dean Myers story; although some minor details mark it as an early 80s book, it remains a great look at the changes a foster child can make to another child's life.

Gentle's Holler

Loved this book. It's an endearing and engrossing story about a North Carolinian family during the 1960s; not much action, but a very character-rich story.


Confession: I'd never read this until now. I think you really need to encounter this as a read-aloud; by the time you're old enough to read it, it seems too baby-ish. Winnie-the-Pooh is humorous and silly, somewhat twee, but a fun read.

A Faraway Island

A Faraway Island won the Batchelder Award last year (for the most distinguished translated children's book). First in a series hugely popular in its native Sweden, this is an intriguing story of two Jewish-German girls living in Sweden during World War II.

The Devil's Paintbox

This is a powerful and occasionally devastating story set during the western expansion of the 1860s. Dark and graphic at times (but not overly so), this is a memorable read.


I read this for my 10-10-10 reading challenge (scary book). I'm not sure if I would call it scary, but it's definitely an exciting read. I'm not much into the whole vampire craze, but I thought this was pretty cool (it also has a bit of humor, which helped).

I keep my online reading diary at Goodreads; this includes books I don't review on this blog. You can check it out here.

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