There is a review coming… soon

Wow, I feel like I haven’t written anything in ages! I didn’t get as much reading and reviewing done on the trip as I had planned for a couple reasons.

First of all, I spent a majority of the trip acting as the navigator, and with all the car problems we had I was needed a lot. Second of all, I don’t seem to enjoy reading in the car as much as I used to. Not sure if this was because of all the bumps and movement, or if it was just because I was in a different position than normal (I usually have the whole back seat to myself), but I barely read in the car. So most of my reading was done in the hotel rooms when I had a few moments of peace.

IMG_2500Finally, I came back from Florida with a cold. Who does that?!? Me, apparently. So while I’ve had a book finished and ready to be reviewed for a few days, my mind has been too murky to get anything done. (On the bright side, Florida was beautiful!!!)

Oh, and I also had to go through all of my photos and videos and make edits and post to Facebook and tag people and stuff. So I’ve been busy with that. Plus filling out job applications since I didn’t get the job from a couple weeks ago.

All that said, I’m finally starting to feel better, and all my other stuff is finally done, so I should be posting a review sometime tomorrow. I want to get through at least another library run of books (usually about 10) before school starts up again.

So yeah. Review tomorrow (I hope) on There’s a Boy in the Girl’s Bathroom. It was an interesting read, so if my brain is working I should have quite a bit to say about it.

 

Tuck Everlasting

TE cover

Written by: Natalie Babbitt

Published in 1975

Genre: Fantasy

Grade Level: 4-6

Summary: Winnie Foster lives a normal, boring life until one day she meets the Tucks, a family who can never die or grow old. After hearing their story and spending the night with them, Winnie forms a bond of friendship with the family. Trouble eventually comes along in the form of the man in the yellow suit, who wants to find the secret to the Tuck’s eternal life and sell it to the highest bidders.

Continue reading

My next few reviews…

You might notice that the next few reviews I do are going to be a bit shorter and less involved. During my last trip to the library I had planned to just drop off my books and leave, but there was a perfect parking space (and it’s usually impossible to find good parking) so I decided to go in and just grab a couple books. I ended up leaving with my usual ten.

Right now my goal is to get through the remaining six books before I leave for Deaf Conference on Thursday. I don’t want to take library books with me just in case something happens, and they are due the day after we get back.

So I have three days. Or I would, except all of tomorrow will be spent going to a job interview, and most of Wednesday will be spent packing and baking and running errands… so really I need to get through most of them today.

That said, please forgive me if the next few reviews are not up to my normal standards.

I’ve Created a Personal Blog!

I’ve decided to create a personal blog: The Whimsical Realm of Angela’s Mind. I want to keep this blog focused on book reviews, so from now on all of my thoughts, rants, and everything in between will be posted over there.

This blog will continue to be my main focus, and I will continue to post at least one or two reviews each week. I might post some updates and such on this blog, but posts such as “Books, Books, Books!!” and “Education is not really about grades…” will be posted on my personal blog from now on.

So what kinds of things will be posted on my personal blog? As I’ve already said, my thoughts and rants will be posted there. I will also probably have posts about travel (if I ever get a chance to go somewhere), craft projects, and photography. I’m not really sure where I’m going with it yet, but it should be fun.

If you’re interested in checking out my personal blog, head on over to The Whimsical Realm of Angela’s Mind, or check out my first post: “Taking the first step…

Birthday and Books

Well, today is my birthday, and also apparently a great day for books!!

First of all, there were a few garage sales around my neighborhood today, and I was lucky enough to find a bunch of children’s books! One of the garage sales was at the home of a retired teacher, so I also got a bunch of teaching stuff. I might have to go back tomorrow, as there was just so much to look through… I probably missed some stuff.

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I found a couple Louis Sachar books (including one of the Wayside School books that I was planning on looking for this summer), a set of Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle books (which I don’t think I’ve read before but I remember one of the classes I subbed for was reading), a couple Caldecott books, and some other stuff. So yeah… good finds today! I’m especially excited to have found some good chapter books, as I would rather take those on vacation than a pile of picture books. I’ve got a 19 hour (one-way) trip coming up this summer, so I need some books to read and review!

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So after walking around the neighborhood and buying books I come home to see that the book I’ve been waiting on for a couple weeks came in the mail! I ordered Math Curse from an independent seller on Amazon… I was a bit nervous about what condition it would be in (since I only paid $0.22 plus shipping) but it arrived and it’s perfect!! So excited to read it again! I first found this book a couple years ago during one of my internships when we had a “Math Day” in 4th grade (any and everything we did that day somehow related to math). I loved the book back then, and as I was setting up this blog I remembered it and looked it up on a whim. The price was great so I bought it… and now it’s here!!

So yeah, happy birthday to me! Yay for new books!!! Now I just need to find someplace to put them…

Books, Books, Books!!

So I went to the library tonight to get some more books to review and I had a little bit of time before church started to do some reading… and it got me thinking…
20130620-003016.jpg I love getting new books! Whether from the library, a book store, or online, a new story is always exciting to me. Working on this blog has really reminded me of just how much I love books. Most of the reading I’ve been doing over the last few years (with the notable exception of my college textbooks) has been online. From FanFiction to e-books almost all of what I’ve read (and I’ve read a lot) has been electronic text. Usually the only physical books I buy (other than textbooks) are ones that I plan to use in my classroom someday, or ones where there is something special about the physical book itself (like when I pre-ordered The Fault in Our Stars because all the pre-orders were signed by John Green).

It’s been really nice to get my hands onto physical books, to experience the differences between reading a book and reading on my computer screen. Not to say that there’s anything wrong with electronic text. I love reading on my Kindle and on my computer… but there’s a completely different experience when you have a real book in your hands. The next book I’ll be reviewing (The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales) is a prime example of this. Every part of that book, from the cover to the title page to the stories is part of an experience that you just can’t fully get from an e-book.

So what am I saying here? I don’t really know… Again, I’m not trying to criticize e-books. I love knowing that when I go on vacation all I need to bring is my Kindle and charger, rather than the one to two bags full of library books (which is what I used to do every year when the family would go on vacation). But sometimes you just need to go to the library… surround yourself with books… and take the time to appreciate the fact that you have a place to go and borrow books from.

So go to your local public library! Pick up a book and read it! Trust me, sometimes a good book is all you need to make the world seem a little brighter.

“Education is not really about grades…”

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“…education is not really about grades or getting a job; it’s primarily about becoming a more aware and engaged observer of the universe. If that ends with college, you’re rather wasting your one and only known chance at consciousness.”

-John Green (2013 Butler University Commencement Address)

I really love this quote. I am a nerdfighter (DFTBA!) so I love most things that come from John and Hank Green… but this quote is by far one of my favorites. I am a firm believer in the value of life-long learning, whether it comes about through college courses, reading, or life experiences. I hope that I never lose my excitement for learning, and that I can continue to improve myself in all areas throughout my lifetime.

That is one of the primary reasons I started this blog. I’m currently searching (and searching and searching) for a teaching job, and I want to keep myself informed and focused on my ultimate goal of becoming a teacher. By reading these books and keeping track of them, I am preparing myself to be a better teacher with a wide range of literature that I can call upon at a moment’s notice. With the limited amount of time teachers have in the school day, it has become really important to be able to combine subjects. This is most easily done by reading books that relate to content areas such as science and social studies.

Even if I wasn’t working towards becoming a teacher, I think I would still be reading a lot of books. I’ve always loved reading, and it is one of the easiest ways to obtain knowledge on a huge variety of subjects. Again, I strive to be a life-long learner, and I believe that through learning and reading we can truly become engaged and useful citizens of the universe we live in.

My First Review is Coming Soon….

Alright then! My first book review will be uploaded in the next day or so. I decided to start with something I’ve been using quite a bit lately: a book of funny poems for kids that I have been taking with me when I substitute. My review is already written up, I just need to go through and edit it, add some pictures, and do some formatting before I can post it.

I’m about to start reading one of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books, which will be my next review and will include a “guest review” from a kid. I’ve been meaning to read one (or more) of these books for a couple years now, so I’m glad I finally have some motivation to do it.

As of this moment, I’m hoping to have at least one review going up each week, with a guest review every couple weeks. This may change based on my schedule, but we’ll see how things go. The guest reviews will depend on what kids I am able to get to help me out… so we shall see.