My classroom is not a quiet, orderly place.
Students are constantly moving, thinking, talking, reading and writing.
I do my best to help my students find success.

June 25, 2013

Summer Reading... so far

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I have been working through a few good books this summer, between cleaning out my daughter's room, washing lots of dishes (now I know why we like to eat out!) and purging the basement.  Here's a few I've enjoyed:

 (book cover photos from


My sister-in-law shared Summerland with me.  She devours adult fiction and passes them to me (we love Janet Evanovich's quick reads).  I liked this book as it wove together the small town of Nantucket, MA as three families deal with a teen car accident.  The writing floats between the past and present, and reveals so much about the characters.

Beautiful Creatures (Caster Chronicles, #1)Beautiful Darkness (Caster Chronicles, #2) The Caster Chronicles series by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl caught my eye when the Beautiful Creatures movie trailer came out.  They tend to be a bit long, but the characters and the South Carolina town they inhabit are fun to read about.  The magical categories and boy/girl drama between Lena and Ethan keep me reading this series.  The next book in the series is Beautiful Redemption.  I may save it for winter reading.

 Butter is a morbidly obese high schooler who plays a mean saxophone and secretly pines for a girl in his class.  He's bullied by two guys, especially, and decides he should just eat himself to death.  Butter has some great mentors, but you can feel his desperation.  (Psst - it does have a happy ending, don't worry!)

The Book of Broken Hearts

The Book of Broken Hearts is my second read by Sarah Ockler.  I immensely enjoyed reading about Jude and her family (three intense sisters, hardworking mom, dad with early-onset Alzheimer's).  These characters are so real and dealing with such a raw, terrible disease.  There's great sparks and chemistry between Jude and Emilio.  He's a motorcycle repair kid from a family of heartbreakers who Jude is supposed to avoid.  Be prepared for heartache and tears in this story.  I couldn't put it down.

Liar and Spy

Finally, I need to go back and reread Liar and Spy by Rebecca Stead.  This is my fave middle grade read this summer.  Georges, Mom and Dad downsize to an apartment building in New York.  Georges meets Safer and Candy, two homeschooled kids, who introduce him to the art of spying.  Georges deals with separation from his mom and a few bullies at school.  The ending makes you realize how much you missed while you read this book!  I didn't figure out the clues the author left, so I'm determined to reread and find them.  This would be a great read for those middle graders who crave a little mystery.

Happy summer reading!  I recommend setting up a account and searching #bookaday on Twitter to find your next great read!


  1. Thanks for the great shares Chris . . . I will be looking for some great reads on the long plane ride to Greece later in July. ;-)

  2. WOW get the Kindle link going. Thank you for the suggestions.

  3. Thanks for the list of "good reads". I've read Hilderbrand before, but not this particular book. I'll have to check it out.

  4. Chris,
    Looks like you are keeping busy reading. Summerland looks like a good read. I'm going to add it to my Shelfari shelf (which is growing like crazy this summer).

    So I'm wondering...since you're experience can you come work on my basement? LOL. I really need to get it cleaned!


  5. You have been busy! Some good reads too . . . even on vacation, I've been neglecting reading (a book that is) and busy reading PD and online. Must. Find. A. Book. To. Read. Next. Thanks for the push! :)