Books read in July 2015

Not a ton of winners this month.  Just read the Boys on the Boat and call it good.

Middle Reader-eh
YA–Boys Don’t Knit
Grownup–The Boys on the Boat

enormous SMALLNESS
Kris DiGiacomo/(Illusrator)
Read for Librarian Book Group
As I associate Mr. e.e. cummings with very sexy poems, I was interested to read a children’s book about his life.  There was some amusing glossing over of things, and overall I found this to be a good intro.

Middle Reader
Winona’s Pony Cart
Maude Hart Lovelace
The last in my tour through the Betsy-Tacy World and one that I should have read early on, but did not because the numbering system is incorrect. (Continued grumblings.)  Winona’s birthday is coming up and she really, really wants a pony.  Will she get one?  Even though both her parents say she won’t?  Lots of good examples of trying to fit into feminine norms, even if you are a messy kid.

The Game of Love and Death
Martha Brockenbrough
Read for Librarian Book Group
Many of the members of the book group were bowled away by this book, especially the writing.  I found the story to be serviceable and interesting and that it did not grab me, perhaps because Love and Death were manipulating our lovers.  (Thanks to Deborah for bringing up that point.)

Cuckoo Song
Frances Hardinger
Read for Librarian Book Group
The creepy cover extends to the creepy book.  But it’s a good creepy, with well-rounded characters and an interesting mystery/conundrum.

Delicate Monsters
Stephanie Kuehn
Read for Librarian Book Group
I’m not sure just what Kuehn was trying to do with this (thankfully short) novel.  Show us that evil people have good sides?  Examine degrees of ill-will?  Flesh out teenagers who do bad things?  I was not charmed by the author’s previous work Charm & Strange, so it may be that she and I are not compatible.  Regardless, I look forward to the discussion.

The Lunch Witch
Deb Lucke
Read for Librarian Book Group
Graphic novel about a witch who finds employment as a lunch lady and finds herself changing her evil ways.  Amusing and breezy, great for upper elementary/early middle school.

Boys Don’t Knit
T.S. Easton
Read for Librarian Book Group
Uniformly funny throughout, this was a very fun tale of a boy who tries his best to manage his amazing new talent of knitting with the fact that he’s 16, technically a juvenile delinquent, his friends don’t always have the best ideas and his parents always speak in double entendres.

The Boys on the Boat
Daniel James Brown
Read for Kenton Library Book Group
I did my traditional moan and groan about World War II books, as that subject is a topic I’ve grown weary of.  But this book captivated me.  (And truthfully, most of the WWII books I read end up being very good.)  This book is a little bit about the 1936 Berlin Olympics, but really it’s about Washington State during the Depression.  Now that’s a topic I’m interested in.  The author happens across a perfect main character, Joe Rantz, whose family life does not provide the stability one would prefer.  Brown latches us in for Joe’s ride and manages to mine fabulous details that he scatters hither and yon for your reading pleasure.  Even those not at all interested in rowing or crew will be swept away as the boys from the University of Washington claw their way to the top, through the Depression, past the elite East Coast rowing clubs, and all the way to Berlin to frustrate the Fuhrer.  That we know the outcome at the beginning and still manage to be swept away during the race for the gold medal is a testament to Mr. Brown’s skill.  Very well done and recommended.





4 thoughts on “Books read in July 2015”

  1. Ahh, it’s non-fiction. It sounds interesting, and it’s far more uplifting than the current section I’m working my way through on my reading list.

    1. I loved it so much. I kept saying to Matt “you MUST read this book!” because he rowed crew in college. He was not moved to read it though.

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