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drmaryannbell

Ma Bell's Books and stuff

Currently reading

Challenger Deep
Neal Shusterman
The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B
Teresa Toten
Bone Gap
Laura Ruby
Finding the Worm (Twerp Sequel)
Mark Goldblatt
Dash
Kirby Larson
Small Victories: Spotting Improbable Moments of Grace
Anne Lamott
Killer Instinct
Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption
Laura Hillenbrand
The Night Journal
Elizabeth Crook
Dead End in Norvelt
Jack Gantos

Great YA book for reluctant readers

When I Was the Greatest -  Michael Frost (Photographer), Jason Reynolds

This book makes me wish I had a classroom full of 7th graders with plenty of rowdy boys. I'd have them spotting and then spouting similes in one class period. Forget CCSS and stupid crappy reading passages. This is a fast-moving story with plenty of action and suspense. The 15 year old narrator tells his story in lingo that sounds authentic and does have those similes I mentioned, but in realistic kidspeak. What I really like is that the family in the story lives in tough Brooklyn Bed Stuy and manages to have a close and caring home with a few tough passages, just like everybody else. It does a bit to make suburban kids understand that urban dwellers are not all gangsta types and that lots of folks in tough neighborhoods are just trying to work hard and make the best of their lives possible. The kids are all likeable and decent, and the parents are doing their best, even if the dad has a few rough edges. I would target 7th graders and up, from urban settings and beyond. So what's the deal with the knitted gun cover on the jacket? Read to find out. I ain't telling. And I think I have another author to follow in Jayson Reynolds.