Another month, another list of books. I have really enjoyed doing these post, because I can go back and see what I read each month (and can make recommendations to others!).
The Blackthorn Key
The Blackthorn Key is on the DCF list of books, a Vermont award for children's literature. A classmate read it for an assignment and loved it, so I decided to give it a try.
It was really good! It's about an orphaned apothecary apprentice who gets caught up in a string of murders in London. The book is full of chemistry, codes, and mystery. Maybe not what most adults would want to read (unless they teach ELA), but I would definitely suggest it for middle schoolers!
The Mysterious St. Benedict Society
I needed to pick a book for class (and I could pick whatever book I wanted). I asked for suggestions on Facebook and got some amazing ones. And then I saw this in the library and caved. I had been wanting to read it for some time now, so I figured this was a good excuse!
The main character, Reynie, is an orphan (this is the month of orphaned main characters!) who joins up with three other exceptional kids under the care of Mr. Benedict. The kids are sent on a mission to figure out what is going on at the Institute.
This book was a really fun read. It reminded me a lot of A Series of Unfortunate Events, although not quite as clever. I think a child who enjoyed puzzles and clues would really enjoy reading this book. Here is my book companion I made for class (in case you decide to read the book).
Emily of New Moon
I am a HUGE Anne of Green Gables fan. Goodness, I even named my son after Gilbert Blythe! But for some reason, I have never read beyond the Anne series. Recently, I heard a guest on What Should I Read Next talk about the Emily of New Moon series.
I can't even begin to tell you how much I loved this series. It was like seeing an old friend again. I read these three on my kindle and I just could NOT stop reading.
Emily is a little like Anne. She's an orphan, living on PEI, and she loves to write. But she is different than Anne, still feisty, still a touch dramatic, but maybe more of a realist. I still think Anne-girl is my favorite, but Emily is now a close second.
The second book in the Emily series is a lot like Anne's second book. Emily goes to the high school in a neighboring town.
And the series finishes up with this book. I will say, I enjoy the Anne/Gilbert story a little more than what goes on in this book, but I did still love it.
Seriously, if you are an Anne fan and you haven't read these books, please do! You will thank me...
Boy in the Moon
This is another book for school. Ian Brown chronicles what it is like raising his son Walker, who has a severe disability. This book is raw and real and a really beautiful read (look at that alliteration!). It is non-fiction, but it reads like a narrative, so I enjoyed it. I loved this book.
Oh, this book! This book was my second favorite this month, after the Emily series, of course. It was written by the author of The Invention of Hugo Cabret.
What is amazing about this book is that the first half is only pictures, but somehow, you get a whole story out of the pictures. And then there is 200 pages of a story, which happens 90 years later. This book is so beautifully done, and the story is captivating. I literally didn't put this book down while I was reading it.
Rum and Razors
Another Murder She Wrote mystery to close out the month. Okay, so this book isn't going to win any awards, but it sure was a fun, light read.
So that's what November looked like. December will involve lots of traveling and family, so who knows how much reading I will get done!