Welcome to the June 2018 edition of An Open Book, hosted both at My Scribbler’s Heart AND Catholicmom.com!
An Open Book is all about what my family is reading this month, from the adults down to the little kids. Share what you’re reading by linking up your blog post below. Simply write about what you’re reading. You can make it personal or, as I do, extend it to the whole family. Your post can be as simple as a few lines about the book or as in-depth as a 700-word review. That’s entirely up to you. You can even forego writing all together and record a video or simply post cover photos.
No blog? No problem. Please share what you’re reading in the comments.
Lately, I’ve gone from reading one book at a time to juggling an audiobook or two, a children’s book, and a couple of others simultaneously. It’s not my favorite way to read, but it’s getting the job done. There are two new books I’m eager to start next week!
The Solace of Water is the latest release by Elizabeth Byler Younts. I’m intrigued by the premise of this Christian women’s fiction story of friendship between an African-American preacher’s wife and a reclusive Amish woman set in Pennsylvania in 1956. Kristine Wilson of CBA Market Review says, “Byler Younts is a marvel with dialect and highly charged emotional scenes. Like a turbulent river, water is ever-present in this story of love, anger, and regeneration.”
I’m also itching to start the contemporary Christian romance Just Let Go by Courtney Walsh. The cover is just so lovely with those pretty flowers. And fitting, since Quinn is a flower shop owner paired with a haughty Olympic skier, Grady, as they renovate said flower shop.
The Vagabond Codes by J.D. Stone is a Young Adult thriller set in a dystopian America. I’m 3/4 of the way through the story of fourteen-year-old Ben and a small band of teens fighting for survival against artificial intelligence gone bad and roaming cannibals. In the early chapters especially, it struck me as part Falling Skies, part The Walking Dead, and part Battlestar Galactica. Lots of action, but as it progresses, more of Ben’s family history and personal conflict is revealed.
The last reading my oldest son did before finals started and baseball games littered the calendar is William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar. This is one of the few Shakespeare plays I haven’t yet read (which is crazy for a Classics major), so I was interested to learn that it’s less about Caesar and more about Brutus, who conspired to assassinate the first Roman emperor.
I’m not sure where I ran across The Courage of Sarah Noble by Alice Dagliesh, but I knew this was a book my fourth-grade daughter would like. It is a true story about a girl who traveled with her father to build a new home for their family in the wilderness in 1707. There, she cares for her father and befriends her Indian neighbors. The book is a Newbery Medal winner.
Another Newbery Medal winner has been in my daughter’s reading pile: Hatchet by Gary Paulsen. This is the first survival story she’s read and is the first book in the Brian’s Saga series. While traveling to visit his father, thirteen-year-old Brian’s plane goes down, leaving him alone in the Canadian wilderness with nothing but his clothes, a windbreaker, and the hatchet his mother gave him.
Finally, the fourth grade class has been reading Shiloh by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor (yet another Newbery Medal winner). My daughter tells me she likes the book, yet seems reluctant to do the required reading. Could be end-of-the-school-year burnout. Shiloh is the adorable beagle depicted on the cover, rescued from an abusive home by Marty. Marty tries to keep Shiloh a secret, but, as you might guess, the secret coming to light could have big consequences.
I spotted Blockhead: The Life of Fibonacci by Joseph D’Agnese in my Goodreads feed. My knowledge of the Fibonacci Sequence comes entirely from the TV show Touch, so I thought this might round out my knowledge a bit while entertaining my little kids. I love children’s books that introduce kids to big or complex subjects in age-appropriate ways. Blockhead depicts the medieval daydreamer Fibonacci as a misunderstood boy with a facility for numbers. Eventually, he connects those numbers to the patterns found in nature.
My youngest daughter brought home Move Over, Rover by Karen Beaumont from the school library. This book immediately reminded me of Jan Brett’s The Mitten, which I wrote about last month. Instead of animals cramming themselves into a mitten, in Move Over, Rover, they are squeezed into a dog house. Instead of being driven out by a sneeze, they are driven out by the addition of a skunk! This picture book is a cute and easy read.
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Copyright 2018 Carolyn Astfalk