Friday, 21 October 2016
We found a hat by Jon Klassen (Hat Trilogy #3)
Two turtles find one hat – and it happens to look great on both of them.
I love this series. Book one and two are my go to buys when I need to buy a present book for yet another friend who has produced another small child because they are very easily enjoyed by both small child and by the adult forced to read said book in a near comatose state because of the sheer tiredness associated with being a new parent regardless of whether said parent is an enthusiastic reader or not. I loved this latest addition. The story is subtle and clever with a lot of the darker parts clear to the adult reading and not so obvious to the child. I love how subtle changes in the pictures, particularly the eyes, really change the tone of the scene. This particular installment did not go how I expected it to go at all and I really loved it. I'll be buying lots of copies this Christmas for all the small children on my christmas list.
Wednesday, 19 October 2016
We were on a break by Lindsey Kelk
Is it a break? Or is it a blip? 'You've just had a holiday,' I pointed out, trying not to yawn. 'Wasn't that enough of a break?' 'I don't mean that kind of break.' There's nothing worse than the last day of holiday. Oh wait, there is. When what should have been a proposal turns into a break, Liv and Adam find themselves on opposite sides of the life they had mapped out. Friends and family all think they're crazy; Liv throws herself into work - animals are so much simpler than humans - and Adam tries to get himself out of the hole he's dug. But as the short break becomes a chasm, can they find a way back to each other? Most importantly, do they want to?
I really enjoyed this book. I don't read huge amounts of adult books but I do like adult contemporary like this and am increasingly seeking them out.
I liked this because the story was sweet and funny and I really like how real the main characters were in it. I could really relate to Liv and everything she was going through as she muddled through trying to sort of a whole host of misunderstandings which lead to a rough patch in her relationship with Adam. The story is very British set in a little village and I loved that about it. I also loved that Liv was part of a couple where she was the more successful one.
This is my first encounter with a Lindsey Kelk novel and certainly won't be my last.
Monday, 17 October 2016
Coming to England by Floella Benjamin
Floella Benjamin reveals the hopes and fears, and the pain she experienced when leaving the Caribbean for an unfriendly new life in England. Her feelings are shared by any child who has had to adapt to a new life in a strange environment and culture.
This was an incredibly quick read for me but one I'm glad I took the time to pick up. It is the story of Floella Benjamin and her family who came to England about the same time as Windrush after the Second World War. It gives you detail of her life before and after her move and all the worries and troubles her family faced as a result of hostility and racsim faced when they moved. While this story is several years old I think in our current political climate of fear and mistrust of immigrants this is a story that needs to be shared.
Friday, 14 October 2016
Jinks and O'Hare Funfair Repair
Emily loves living on Funfair Moon - especially when she gets to help Jinks & O'Hare, the extraordinary repair team. But when chaos strikes during a crucial funfair inspection, Emily has to act fast. Can she deal with a violent fudgesplosion, a gravity inversion, and a marauding candyfloss creature? Or does this spell doom for Funfair Moon?
I love books by this duo. The stories are fun and always accompanied by a series of brilliant illustrations which add to the experience. This latest offering is no exception and I enjoyed Emily's story immensely. It made me chuckle and I'm looking forward to sharing with some young readers I know. I read it in one greedy gulp because it was so much fun.
Wednesday, 12 October 2016
Bison are banned and tigers are taboo. Say goodbye to the gnu, cheerio to the cheetah and poo poo to the panda. The world of Lesser Spotted Animals STARTS HERE! Discover the brilliant beasts you never knew you needed to know about - from the numbat to the zorilla and everything in between. Martin Brown's wonderfully funny and fact-tastic writing, teamed with his fabulous illustrations and tummy-tickling jokes, is a winning combination.
I really enjoyed this book. It isn't the sort of thing I usually review but I've just started teaching Geography to a reasonably bottom set Year 7 class and I thought this would be handy. It has nice double page spreads on different animals you've probably not heard of because they aren't so well known. The animals included are fascinating with lovely pictures and nice facts about them. It is definitely the sort of facts I could use introduce more unusual animals to my class when teaching about different habitats across the globe. The only thing I would change about it is that I would have liked a photograph of each animal too.
Monday, 10 October 2016
Holding up the Universe by Jennifer Niven
Everyone thinks they know Libby Strout, the girl once dubbed “America’s Fattest Teen.” But no one’s taken the time to look past her weight to get to know who she really is. Following her mom’s death, she’s been picking up the pieces in the privacy of her home, dealing with her heartbroken father and her own grief. Now, Libby’s ready: for high school, for new friends, for love, and for every possibility life has to offer. In that moment, I know the part I want to play here at MVB High. I want to be the girl who can do anything.
Everyone thinks they know Jack Masselin, too. Yes, he’s got swagger, but he’s also mastered the impossible art of giving people what they want, of fitting in. What no one knows is that Jack has a newly acquired secret: he can’t recognize faces. Even his own brothers are strangers to him. He’s the guy who can re-engineer and rebuild anything, but he can’t understand what’s going on with the inner workings of his brain. So he tells himself to play it cool: Be charming. Be hilarious. Don’t get too close to anyone.
Until he meets Libby. When the two get tangled up in a cruel high school game—which lands them in group counseling and community service—Libby and Jack are both pissed, and then surprised. Because the more time they spend together, the less alone they feel. Because sometimes when you meet someone, it changes the world, theirs and yours.
I liked Jennifer's first book but something about it didn't quite click for me and I didn't love it like everyone else is. Now I've read this book I finally get it. I get why people are obsessed with her work. I loved this book.
I loved the storylin completely and seeing Jack and Libby's relationship develop over the course of the book. It was wonderful seeing how they got to know each other and they changed each other and the other's perception of the world.
I loved Libby as a main character. She's a bigger girl who is treated in a really foul way purely because she doesn't conform to the stereotype of how you are supposed to look in high school. I loved particularly that actually on the grand scheme of things she's OK with herself and her own skin after taking control of her extreme weight. I love that she took control of that for herself because it's what she wanted.
Jack's story is also really interesting. I'd not heard of Prosopagnosia before she seeing how Jack deals with it was fascinating as you see how he copes with his condition on his own and then later with Libby's support.
A book I loved. Highly recommended.
Thursday, 6 October 2016
Kid Got Shot by Simon Mason (The Garvie Smith Mysteries #2)
Meet Garvie Smith. Reprobate, genius, waster, and sometime detective. Right in the middle of revision hell - until now. A boy from Marsh Academy has been shot, with no clear motive and no clues. Disgraced DI Singh is on the case, and he's determined to keep Garvie away. But Garvie knows he's the only one who has any idea where to look for the answers. Starting with his best friend's girlfriend. And it's going to take more than pointless revision or flunking his exams to stop him getting involved. Exams. What exams?
I really like the Garvie Smith Mysteries series. Garvie Smith is clever and incredibly bright as well as being a huge pain in the bum. If I taught him he'd be one of those kids that drove me completely around the bend. I really enjoyed this latest instalment in the series because it was thoughtful and kept me guessing throughout. A teen Sherlock Holmes for a modern generation.