#IMWAYR – June 6, 2016

It’s Monday, What Are You Reading? is hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date, and adapted by Kellee at Unleashing Readers and Jen at Teach Mentor Texts with a children’s/YA focus. The Sunday Post is hosted by The Caffeinated Book Reviewer. These weekly roundups are a great way to discover new blogs and bloggers, share recommended (or not so recommended….) titles, and add to your ever-growing to-read list.


The Wheels on the Tuk Tuk

It’s no secret that I love singable picture books, so I’m always on the lookout for new stories to add to my collection and use in my story times. This lively picture books puts a fun new spin on the classic children’s song The Wheels on the Bus by placing it in a colourful, bustling Indian setting. The text is rousing and bouncing, though perhaps a little long for my story times. Still, it’s easy enough to skip a page or two to shorten the text without losing any of the fun. Definitely worth taking a look at, especially for the joyous illustrations – check out the impressive size of the moo-moo cow!


Baa-Baa Smart Sheep

This dryly funny little picture book features a clever sheep who relieves its boredom by playing mind games with a slightly dim-witted turkey. The dialogue is sharp and witty, and the exchanges between the two characters would make for an effective elementary school read-aloud, but ewwwww….. just …..ewwwww…..this is certainly not a title for those with an aversion to potty humour or bodily functions, I’ll just leave it at that!


Hoot Owl: Master of Disguise

“I am Hoot Owl!

I am very, very hungry.

And here I come!

The shadowy night stretches away forever, as black as burnt toast.”

A charming protagonist with unshakeable optimism and endless persistence, wonderfully striking illustrations with bold lines and an eye-catching palette, and a perfect amount of repetition make this a fantastic picture book for young readers. Sweet, silly, endearing, and lots of fun.


Two is Enough

Families come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, and this rhyming picture book is dedicated to families of two – whether it’s a parent and a child, or a grandparent and a grandchild, these small families have just as much love in them as a family of any other size. Cheerful illustrations and a gentle, reassuring text celebrate the loving everyday experiences of families of two.

Where Things Come Back

I’ll be honest, I don’t read a lot of young adult fiction. It wasn’t my jam when I was a young adult, and it’s just not my jam now. Being a teenager wasn’t the best or easiest time in my life, so I’m not really in any hurry to relive it! But every once in a while I come across a young adult novel that knocks my socks right off, and makes me rethink my assumptions about what teen fiction is capable of. Where Things Come Back is one of those novels. Don’t get me wrong, it definitely has elements of a coming-of-age, where-do-I-fit-in story line. But in John Corey Whaley’s hands, these potentially tired tropes become something much more. There are two major story lines that run along side each other before finally intersecting in a dramatic and surreal conclusion – one features teenager Cullen, whose younger brother has suddenly disappeared, while the other follows a young missionary and his shattering crisis of faith.  This is a strange, complex, weird and wonderful novel that challenges any preconceived notions you might have about teen fiction, and argues that fiction written for and about young people can be as thought-provoking, meaningful, and nuanced as any adult novel.