All in Dr.Bookworm Book Rec

Drawn Together

My Lola was one of my kindred spirits. I think she understood me in a different way than my mom does.

So you can imagine that when I heard that Dan Santat was illustrating a picture book about a boy’s relationship with his grandfather, I leaped at the chance to read it. I mean, it’s Dan Santat, right?

First Pages: Crimes of Grindewald

“Scene 1: EXT NEW YORK, AMERICAN MINISTRY OF MAGIC—1927—NIGHT

AERIAL of New York and MACUSA building.]

Scene 2: INT MACUSA BASEMENT, BARE, BLACK-WALLED ROOM, NIGHT

The long-haired, bearded GRINDEWALD sits motionless, partially fixed to a chair. The air shimmers, charged with spells.

ABERNATHY peers in at GRINDEWALD from the corridor.

A baby chupacabra—part lizard, part homunculus, a blood-sucking creature of the Americas—is chained to GRINDEWALD’S chair. “

~ The Crimes of Grindewald by J.K. Rowling

First Pages: Awkward

“Okay, so when you’ve just moved to a new town and are still a total outsider…

this…

…is not the best way to start life at your new school.

Hi! Penelope here. Peppi for short. It’s my first day at Berrybrook Middle School, and I just ripped over my own feet and dropped everything.”

~ Awkward by Svetlana Chmakova

Roof Octopus

What I love about Roof Octopus is the quirkiness of the storyline and the whimsical, magical, and colorful illustrations that match the story perfectly. Basically a little girl wakes up to find an octopus on her rooftop.  And while the adults aren't so quick to accept someone new and foreign to their neighborhood, Nora is wholeheartedly all in.

I Have Lost My Way

I read I Have Lost My Way by Gayle Forman completely backwards.  Or completely out of order, at least.  Have you ever done that?  Skipped ahead to get to the crux of the matter?  Or because there's a scene you want to spoil for yourself?

I skipped around and then read the last third and then went back to the parts I skipped.

Hello Universe Read-along Part 1

We've heard the phrase WE NEED DIVERSE BOOKS over and over again.  And it's true.  No matter how many times you hear it, or if you're sick of hearing the same things in conferences.  When I was growing up, I NEVER saw myself in the books I read.  Ever.

I was so excited that Erin Entrada Kelly won the Newbery that I did this read-along a little differently: I distributed ten copies of Hello, Universe to my fellow bibliophiles and colleagues who love to read.

Escargot

I have this huge affinity for snails that started when I was little.  There's a great video of my cousins, sisters, and me playing in the backyard with snails.  I think theoretically we are rescuing and clearing the garden from them.  I also remember putting them in jars and watching them kiss. 

The Crossover

The Crossover centers around Josh and his twin, Jordan AKA JB, who are two middle schoolers who play basketball, just like their dad.  The family dynamics are spelled out easily, and the interaction between (mainly) the three of them is heartfelt and wonderful.  At its heart, this novel is about a family.  But, yes, it's about basketball too, and relationships, and coming of age.

Kat Writes a Song

In Kat Writes a Song by Greg Foley, Kat works hard to create a song, and then she second-guesses herself.  We've all been there. Thinking we're creating something fantastic, especially as a writer, and then we start to let the doubts creep in.  What I admire about Foley's story is that he shows Kat persevering through the creative process, and then sharing her joy.

Seb and the Sun

In Seb and the Sun, we follow Seb and Walrus through their very specific coastal town and community.  And as we follow this close-knit community, Seb realizes that something is missing and he knows exactly how to go find it.  Gigot contrasts the brightness and darkness in her illustrations, creating a beautiful reflection of each other.

Different Like Coco

It may be news to you but I've always been a bit obsessed with fashion designers.  I learned to sew when I was a kid and I loved to fiddle with my clothes or make them my own when I was a teen.  Just little things here and there.  And while I still love to make things, I don't have a talent for pattern making.

Niko Draws a Feeling

Niko Draws a Feeling by Bob Raczka is about learning to look at the world with different eyes, or at least accepting that others may see the world in different ways than you do.  I parallel Niko with some of my patients who express themselves differently—maybe they have autism, maybe they have a different artist's eye than I do, maybe they don't speak yet (or at all). But they may have specific ways of communicating with others.

Ordinary, Extraordinary Jane Austen

One book I came across was Ordinary, Extraordinary Jane Austen written by Deborah Hopkinson and illustrated by Qin Leng.  It's no secret that I'm an Austenite.  I even endured that film about her with Anne Hathaway (Becoming Jane).  And I took a course on Austen as a grad student that was purely for the delight of discussing all of her works. 

So I've always known that Jane Austen was extraordinary.

Love is Love is Love is Love

I thought Love was a beautiful and inclusive ode to the many ways that we see love in our every day.  What I loved most was how tactile everything felt in the story.  De La Pena spun his words so I could see every image in my mind--besides what was on the page--and what's more I could feel the scent in the air, hear the music notes being played.