Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Reading Round-Up: July, August and September

Whew!! How did these 3 months fly by? Have you been wondering when I would talk about books again? Well, here it is. Finally.

Here are the books I have read since my last round-up:

1. Recovering Charles - Jason F. Wright
2. Maybe (Maybe Not) - Robert Fulghum
3. You will Dream New Dreams - Kim Schive
4. The Uncommon Reader - Alan Bennett
5. Into the Wild - Sarah Beth Durst
6. Across the River and Into the Trees - Earnest Hemingway
7. Spilling Clarence (reread) - Anne Ursu
8. Refuge - Terry Tempest Williams
9. The Year my Son and I were Born - Kathryn Lynard Soper
10. The Parents Guide to Speech and Language Problems - Debbie Feit
11. The Scarlet Pimpernel - Emmaska Orczy
12. Inkdeath - Cornelia Funke
13. The Story of Edgar Sawtelle - David Wroblewski
14. To the Lighthouse - Virginia Woolf
15. Circle of Friends - Maeve Binchy
16. Mississippi Trial, 1955 - Chris Crowe
17. The Complete IEP Guide - Lawrence Siegel
18. A Northern Light - Jennifer Donnelly
19. Follow the River - James Alexander Thom
20. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest - Ken Kesey
21. The Little Guide to Your Well-Read Life - Steve Leveen
22. The Martian Child - David Gerrold
23. Inkspell - Cornelia Funke
24. Uncle Tom's Cabin - Harriet Beecher Stowe

And some superlatives:

Best book made into a movie - The Martian Child

Best book about reading - The Little Guide to Your Well-Read Life :)

Biggest heart-wrenching adventure - Follow the River

my favorite classic - The Scarlet Pimpernel

Best books for parents of children with special needs:
Really, I have to highly recommend all 3 of these. The Complete IEP Guide is an ESSENTIAL handbook for the IEP process. The Year my Son and I Were Born is the first-hand account of an mom's first year with a child with Down's Syndrome. It was incredibly moving.
And then You Will Dream New Dreams is an anthology of essays written by parents in various stages of raising a child with special needs. These essays articulated so beautifully the full range of emotions this process and journey entails. For me, it was something I really needed to read right now.

The book furthest removed from my usual reading: Refuge (a lot about birds and ecology - interesting, but not really in the subjects dearest to my heart).

Best Youth Fantasy - Into the Wild
I was very impressed with this book! It was so fun.

Best by one of my favorite authors - Maybe (Maybe Not)

And my highest recommendations for general good reading:
Circle of Friends
The Story of Edgar Sawtelle
and the Inkheart books

We also discussed Spilling Clarence for book club this month. I thought we had an interesting discussion about the fickle nature of memories. How tainted our views of history can be (personally and as a society) because it all depends on how we remember them. Why some things are remembered and why others forgotten. And how our memories remembered and forgotten shape who we are and keep us sane. I just found it all fascinating. Although I admit I am endlessly fascinated by brain science in the first place, so I can understand why not everyone would find it as interesting as I did. But I do think it was a good book for discussion.

Have you read anything good lately? Have you read any of these?
Any of these sound good to you?


bonitinha said...

I'm so glad you liked Circle of Friends! I love reading your lists of books... you have such varied interests and read such a wide range of literature. I'm very impressed. I'll have to add Into the Wild to my "to read" list because if it's YA Fantasy, you know I'm all over it! Maybe I should branch out a little more too. :)

Anonymous said...

but Refuge was good, no?

there was more to it than just birds and ecology, but that brought it all together. know your lake/habitat, people!


Kristen said...

yes, Refuge was good and very interesting. I really learned a lot. But I found myself looking forward more to her discussions of the cancer in her family than all about the birds. Sorry. :)

And I know I haven't done justice to these books as far as a review is concerned. I really just can't review them all individually!!

Mr. Sessions said...

Wanted to chirp in on good books. I just finished the first Lightning Thief book and loved it. It was a hip sassy read where action, history, and humor are all put together in a pleasing way. It is being made into a movie coming out in a few months. I don't know what grade your oldest ( notice I didn't use real names) is in but 5th 6th is perfect. I loved Three Cups of Tea last year and just bought a young readers edition for my classroom. Superb book if you are looking. Great list Kristen!!

Kristen said...

Thanks for the recommendations. I've been hearing about The Lightning Thief lately and will recommend it to Abigail next after she finishes the Inkheart series (she's in 5th grade).
And I am going to go put Three Cups of Tea on hold at the library right now! :)

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