I didn’t know if spring break would ever arrive, but it’s finally here! Keith and I talked about going to Chicago for a few days, but because of the weather being a tad sketchy lately we decided to stay home. I love taking trips with my husband, but I also love being at home with him while relaxing and reading. Spring break officially starts tomorrow, but I’ve been organizing and starting my #bookaday goals this weekend. I will admit, however, that I was pretty darn lazy yesterday (I slept for most of the day) and didn’t get much reading done. The laziness has continued today, but I’m determined to finish a book! I think I have my list pretty much narrowed down, even if it’s a lofty list.
A majority of the reading I’m doing this week is work-related. When I say work-related, though, I’m referring to Y.A. titles I need to read for work, which is quite happy-making! My freshmen are in the middle of reading Romeo & Juliet, but this year we’re including a group of Y.A. titles to read with To Kill a Mockingbird that fit with some of the themes and issues (prejudice, maturity, loss of innocence, etc.). Most of them I’ve already read, but there are some titles that others in my department have read and I have not, or titles my friends on Twitter recommended when we were deciding on this list that I still need to read.
I’m also working on narrowing down ideas and titles for my Y.A. Lit II class that I’m teaching next year. My goal for the class is that we’ll still read three novels as a class, but this time the novels will be genre-focused and the students will read an additional title that fits that genre. I’ll be pretty flexible when it comes to which title they pick as their additional title, but I’d also like to have some new titles that the school can purchase extra copies of for my students. I know for sure that we’re reading dystopian and fantasy, but I haven’t decided which genre to read for the third genre. Historical fiction really isn’t very popular, but paranormal fantasy is, so I was thinking about a title that mixes both of them. Then I could allow students to choose either another like that or either a paranormal fantasy or a historical fiction title as their additional choice. I was also thinking about verse novels even though I don’t consider those a genre. I know sci-fi is a good choice, but I already have a hard enough time reading those that I don’t know if I really want to teach one. I feel like a bad teacher saying that. :/
Anyway, the real reason behind this post, the books!
Timeless by Alexandra Monir (Goodreads)–The publicist sent this to me, so I’m reading it now and enjoying it so far. I think there might be a giveaway in the near future as well!
Bittersweet by Sarah Ockler (Goodreads)–My girls in book club chose this as our next title, and we’re meeting to discuss this after school on the Tuesday we get back from break. I need to read it ASAP! I started it a while ago and it’s pretty good, as I expected, so I’m looking forward to finishing it.
Out of the Pocket by Bill Konigsberg (Goodreads)–Homosexuality isn’t an issue in To Kill a Mockingbird, but the prejudice involved compares with the prejudice in TKAM. We also wanted to include some LGBT novels because it relates to some of our students and it’s often ignored or misunderstood. There’s a good chance there will be upset parents, but we’re preparing ourselves for that.
Marcelo in the Real World by Franciso X. Stork (Goodreads)–This is another title we’re using with our TKAM unit. I think the students should read this book because we have some many autistic students in our building, and the summary makes me think of Boo. I could be wrong, and that might be a stretch, but it still has many of the issues that TKAM does.
Starters by Lissa Price (Goodreads)–I’m thinking about this for my dystopian unit in Y.A. II. I’ve heard great things about it, so I’m excited to try it. I hope it’s as good as everyone says it is!
The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson (Goodreads)–I have this at school right now, so I bought a copy for my Kindle. Ever since I challenged myself to read more fantasy, I’ve found that I really enjoy it. I’ve read mostly good reviews for this debut. One of my freshmen read it and asked about the second book as soon as she returned it because she enjoyed it so much. I hope it’s a winner because I’m considering this for the Y.A. II class. I’m trying to choose a novel that’s newer for this genre study because I have so many avid fantasy readers, and it’s difficult to find a book that none of them have read. Or at least most of them haven’t read.
This is a pretty ambitious list considering I still have a number of plans this week which involve travel, so I don’t know if I’ll actually read all of these in a day each, but I’m going to try! I challenged my students to try #bookaday, even if it meant reading 20 pages, one book, or five books. I hope they update me in the comments of this post, or at least have some exciting stories to tell me when we return from break. Are any of you on spring break and setting up a reading challenge? Have you already had spring break? I know not all of my readers get a spring break, so maybe you’ve read some of these books. I’d love to hear from you!