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The Week in Review: 011.24.2017

November 24, 2017


Between the Covers

Finished last week:

ALL THE DIRTY PARTS by Daniel Handler is the very aptly named story of a high school senior named Cole.  He thinks about sex constantly and has figured out how to charm the girls into sleeping with him.  He and his friend Alec share details of their exploits and so much more.  Cole is happy playing the field and experimenting until Grisaille moves to town.  At 134 pages and a lot of dialogue, this was a very quick read but it was too crude and there wasn’t enough substance to it for me.  The writing was fine, though, and I suspect I’m not the target audience so you might consider it if it sounds interesting to you.  (Review copy provided by Bloomsbury.)

I can’t say enough good things about MALALA’S MAGIC PENCIL by Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai.  When she was young, Malala watched a television show about a boy with a magic pencil.  He could draw whatever he wanted with it and the drawing would come to life.  Malala longed for a magic pencil of her own.  As a young child in her native Pakistan she noticed poverty and injustice and decided she would use her magic pencil to help people.  She started writing about how she felt and, when her writing gained attention, she realized she just might have a magic pencil after all.  The back of this beautiful book contains a note from Malala and a short biography of her.  It’s the perfect book to introduce 4 to 8 year olds to Malala and gives parents, teachers, and caregivers an opportunity to start a dialogue on fighting injustice.  Kerascoët‘s gorgeous illustrations enhance this fabulous book.  Be sure to pick this book up for the young people in your life.  (Review copy provided by Hachette.)

I AM NOT YOUR PERFECT MEXICAN DAUGHTER by Erika L. Sánchez is the story of Julia, a high school student whose older sister Olga recently died in an accident.  Julia was born in the US to undocumented parents.  Her sister Olga was the perfect, dutiful daughter – she went to work and community college every day and was happy spending her evenings at home with her family.  Julia’s a good girl but she wants more from her life than that and she and her mother clash about it on a regular basis.  When Julia goes to a party one evening, an old friend of Olga’s lets it slip that there was more to Olga than her family knew.  Julia is determined to find out what her sister was hiding.  I thought this YA book was terrific!  I became attached to Julia very quickly and I think many teens will relate to her and her clashes with her family.  The story line was great and felt realistic and had enough tension to keep me wondering what would happen next.  I AM NOT YOUR PERFECT MEXICAN DAUGHTER was a finalist for The National Book Award for Young People’s Literature for good reason.  It has a lot of crossover appeal and would be great to share and discuss with the teens in your life.  The audio version is narrated by Kyla Garcia and I thought she did a wonderful job – she was Julia to me.  (Review copy provided by Penguin Random House.)

Currently reading:

On the Screen

I saw Monday night’s edition of Dancing with the Stars and, as always, enjoyed the freestyle dances.  My favorite was Lindsey and Mark’s.  I thought Drew was the right person to go home that night.  I missed Tuesday night’s show but was satisfied with the results.

Off the blog

  • This was a very busy week at the store so I didn’t have much spare time to do anything.
  • I did purchase a Christmas gift (the first of the year) and our Christmas tree is up but it’s not decorated yet.
  • Our Thanksgiving was quiet – just the two of us and Vance but Carl cooked us a wonderful meal and we had a nice time.
  • We walked at least three miles every day and I averaged just over 18,500 Fitbit steps a day.

What’s going on in your corner of the world?

24 Comments leave one →
  1. November 24, 2017 8:45 am

    I’m with you about the Handler book! I’ve heard lots good about the Sanchez book; I’m adding it to my library list!

  2. November 24, 2017 10:14 am

    My kids are both home for Thanksgiving and we’re passing around Gnomon, Artemis, and Turtles All the Way Down.

  3. Beth F permalink
    November 24, 2017 10:21 am

    I totally agree about I’m Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter.

  4. November 24, 2017 10:44 am

    I’ve been eyeing The Garden of Small Beginnings….and I’m glad you had a good holiday. Quiet ones are the best. I am very impressed with your walking! Enjoy the weekend.

  5. November 24, 2017 11:53 am

    The results of DWTS was inevitable. But as Jordan said, he had never done any ballroom dancing. I think that’s a fair statement to make. Either way, he was amazing.

  6. November 24, 2017 12:42 pm

    I must tell you how much I admire your steadfastness when it comes to your walking. I’m impressed with the numbers you share wth us each week. Thanks for telling us about I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter. I’m going to find that one. Have a restful weekend Kathy.

  7. November 24, 2017 1:01 pm

    I am currently reading Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter and enjoying it. I am pleased that Jordan won Dancing with the Stars since I know and like him, even though I didn’t watch the show. 🙂

  8. November 24, 2017 4:21 pm

    I’ve never watched DWTS and don’t know that it would interest me. I suppose I should give it a try sometime.

  9. November 24, 2017 5:44 pm

    I’m going to add Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter to my Audible list and get it when I get my next credit (I have a gift membership for a year, which is awesome!!). I think you’re the second person to rave about it.

    Glad you had a nice Thanksgiving. I’m never eating again. 😉

  10. November 24, 2017 6:04 pm

    Kathy, I also read a review of I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter in the NY Times Book Review recently and have been interested in reading or listening to it. It sounds like you had a very nice Thanksgiving with your family. I have not started my Christmas shopping yet.

  11. November 25, 2017 8:04 am

    Never heard of MALALA’S MAGIC PENCIL before, but now that I have I really want to read it.

  12. November 25, 2017 11:20 am

    I bought a jacket for me on Friday but no gifts for anyone else 🙂

  13. Patty permalink
    November 25, 2017 4:25 pm

    Yes…this must have been the year for quiet Thanksgivings! Your books were certainly varied this week! I bought a coat for me but it wasn’t even on sale!

  14. Lauren Becker permalink
    November 25, 2017 6:48 pm

    I’m working on Christmas gifts too. I’m usually way more ahead, but I’ve been slacking this year or something. LOL I didn’t really like All the Dirty Parts either.


  15. Literary Feline permalink
    November 25, 2017 8:28 pm

    I am looking forward to reading I AM NOT YOUR PERFECT MEXICAN DAUGHTER. And t MALALA’S MAGIC PENCIL sounds like a must have for our children’s library. We had a quiet Christmas too, just the three of us. Our Christmas tree isn’t up yet, although we started decorating. We will probably put the tree up tomorrow. We’ve got most of the indoor decorations up.

    I hope you have a great week, Kathy!

  16. November 25, 2017 11:53 pm

    You already got a Christmas tree up?!?! Crazy girl!! I am usually buying one last minute, haha! Great roundup of reads, btw! ❤ –

  17. Sarah's Book Shelves permalink
    November 26, 2017 9:09 am

    I’ve had my eye on I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican daughter!

  18. November 26, 2017 8:54 pm

    I picked up the Handler book, but didn’t finish it. Not sure I will. You are a dedicated walker and I applaud you! I try to walk every day, but it doesn’t always happen. Have a great week.

  19. November 26, 2017 10:12 pm

    I’m hoping the tree will go up this week. I’m missing a little of the Christmas spirit this year and I’m hoping decorating will help! I have purchased and wrapped half of the books for Gage’s advent tree so that’s something 🙂 Those last two books look great and I’m off to see if my library has them.

  20. November 26, 2017 10:56 pm

    I put Malala’s Magic Pencil on my list of books to buy for children in my holiday Book Report Gift Guide.

  21. bookingmama permalink
    November 27, 2017 10:06 am

    You had a good reading week! I admit I’m curious about ALL THE DIRTY PARTS… especially when it’s only 134 pages.

  22. November 29, 2017 9:14 am

    I’ll gladly pass on the first book but both the Malala book and the Mexican daughter one are novels I would read. I think the Malala book is inspiring for tweens.

  23. November 29, 2017 2:25 pm

    Oh, so glad to read you enjoyed I Am not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter! I’ve been eyeing this one, and it does sound good. I might give the audiobook a try since you enjoyed it!

  24. The Cue Card permalink
    November 29, 2017 6:19 pm

    Glad you had a nice Thanksgiving. I like the crossover appeal of the Erika Sanchez novel. It sounds like a great audio too. thanks for telling me about it.

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