This week was the beginning of summer fun – just reading fiction. I read two books from NetGalleys that will be coming out later this summer and then took time to explore Judy Blume’s new book – In the Unlikely Event.
This book was pure Judy Blume. She builds a strong setting and overtime her characters become friends who you worry and wonder about. It is the phrase over time that is important to note. She has lots of characters who help us understand the events of 1950’s and the fear that ran peoples lives as three planes crashed on Elizabeth, New Jersey. It takes focus and reading well into the story to really feel connected to the everyone. Even with that I have to say it was great fun to return to Judy and her writing style.
I was able to get an early copy of Goodbye Strangers by Rebecca Stead. We get to know Bridge who has survived a skating accident and is always wondering why. Does she have a special purpose for her life? There is Emily who is learning about changing bodies and boys and the internet a bit to quickly. The last of the three is Tabitha who seems to sees through everybody’s games–or so she says. The three girls are best friends with one rule: No fighting.
But… these three are fighting hard to hold onto their friendship while moving in very directions. Stead does a wonderful job of sharing the difficult roads we travel in 7th grade and a peak into the struggles of high school with an un-named character.
This would be a great book for a middle school book club. There is so much for students to relate to and a lot to discuss – what it means to be a friend, what is internet bullying, and the larger topic of trust and care for each other. It you teach middle school I would watch for it in early August.
On my reading list: Middle grades, Young Adult and Adult – what a mix of books!
- The thing about jellyfish (will be released in September – I will review it next week)
- All the Bright Places (reading for my children’s books group – thoughts anyone???)
- Red by Jan de Kinder (paired with All the Bright Places – excited to look for connections)
- The Sign of the Cat (new – about half way through and loving it)
- Survival Strategies of the Almost Brave (new)
- We Never asked for Wings (due out in August)
- Dead Wake (for my adult book group)