This Week In Books #58

I am joining in with the lovely Lipsy from Lipsy’s Lost and Found’s feature which highlights our week in books. I shall be sharing what I’m reading now, then and next! I won’t be showcasing my new books as I do that on a Saturday. I’m really excited by this feature as I loved sharing my recent reads. My book reviews published on my blog are often WAY behind what I’m actually reading, so this is a good feature to keep you up to date!

Click on the book to get to Goodreads!

Awful Auntie Letters to the Lost Goodbye Days

NOWAwful AuntieDavid Walliams– I’m currently reading this book for the Kid-Lit Challenge with my sister, Beth! Our review will be out on Friday!

THENLetters To The LostBrigid Kemmerer– I absolutely adored this book. I’m pushing my review forward, so look out for it tomorrow, if you’re interested! It’s such a moving, thoughtful book.

NEXTGoodbye DaysJeff Zentner– I’ve heard so much hype around this book! I can’t wait to read it!

What are you reading this week? Feel free to let me know or leave a link to a similar post that you do!

Comparing ‘Fish Boy’ by Chloe Daykin

Fish Boy

How did I get it?:
I received it from Faber! Many thanks to them!

Synopsis:

Billy is a lonely boy. He’s obsessed with swimming in the sea, which is where he goes to wash his problems far, far away. Thanks to his mum’s mystery illness, his dad has been forced to work extra hours to make ends meet, so Billy locks himself away with David Attenborough films, and ponders the magic of nature. Meanwhile at school, bullies mercilessly seize on Billy’s ‘otherness’ and make his life as miserable as possible – but then new boy Patrick Green, with “fingers like steel, strength of a bear”, joins Billy’s class. And when a mackerel swims up to Billy’s face, blows bubbles into his Vista Clear Mask goggles and says: Fish Boy – Billy’s whole world changes.

 

Thoughts before you started reading Fish Boy?

CHRISSI: I was intrigued. I had heard great things about the book already and was curious to see if it would live up to my expectations!

LUNA: This sounds magical/lovely, can’t wait to read it.

What did you think of Billy?

CHRISSI: Billy stole my heart. I loved that he was different and wanted him to find happiness, no matter what obstacles were in his way.

LUNA: I liked Billy but I didn’t connect to him the way I hoped. He’s nice and I sympathised with the feelings he went through, the bullying at school and his concerns and anger about his mother.

Best bit?

CHRISSI: I really enjoyed how weird this book was. That might sound strange, but I honestly did. I liked that this book was a little odd and not like your average middle grade read. I also thought it was a unique way to write about the subject matter. (Don’t want to spoil!)

LUNA: The concept of the book. I agree with Chrissi in I enjoyed how weird this book was and I liked the flowing writing of the swimming sections, it was like reading movement.

Worst bit?

CHRISSI: I don’t think it has a worst bit as such. I personally didn’t keep turning the pages, so it didn’t grip me as much as I had anticipated. That’s a minor quibble though!

LUNA: As much as I enjoyed how different Fish Boy was I did not connect emotionally to the book. I don’t know why this was. It has the ingredients but because of that lack of connection I wasn’t invested in Billy, Patrick or Billy’s parents.

Favourite character/moment?

CHRISSI: Billy’s relationship with his parents warmed my heart. Billy had a good relationship with both of his parents and even though his Mum had a lot going on in her life, you could tell she still really cared for him!

LUNA: The Merz wall. The whole concept of the Merz wall and the scene in the book, I just loved it. It’s like the random pin boards I make of memories and ideas. If I had a garden I would want a Merz wall.

Was Fish Boy what you expected?

CHRISSI: It wasn’t what I expected but in a good way. It was weird and wonderful.

LUNA: For the writing yes and I knew it would be different. Personally though, I hoped for a stronger connection to the characters and sadly that didn’t happen.

Would you recommend it?

CHRISSI: Yes!

LUNA: I don’t know.

Top Ten Authors I’d LOVE To Meet

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the wonderful The Broke and The Bookish. This week’s list is all about authors. Authors we’d love to meet or can’t believe we’ve met. I’ve decided to go for author’s that I’d love to meet even if I would go a little fangirly on them.

Jojo Moyes-  Me Before You is one of my favourite books of all time. I’d be happy to be able to tell Jojo just how much I loved her books!

Jolene Perry- I have enjoyed Jolene’s books so much! They’re much deeper than you’d expect which is great.

Cecelia Ahern- I have loved Cecelia’s writing since P.S. I Love You. Her writing is just so magical.

Alison Rattle- I adore Alison Rattle. Her books are so evocative.

Emma Carroll- Another writer I adore. I nearly got to meet her last year but I was too nervous to say hi!

Giovanna Fletcher- I love Giovanna’s writing and she seems like a lovely, bubbly person.

David Walliams- My class adore David’s books. I’d love to tell them I met him!

Michael Rosen- I adore Michael Rosen. I saw him talking at a conference the other weekend, but didn’t have chance to meet him. Sad times.

Kate Karyus Quinn- It would be interesting to have a conversation with Kate to see what she’s like as a person as her books are WEIRD (but wonderful!)

Markus Zusak- I think he would also be fascinating to talk to!

Who have you met before? Have you met any of these authors? Feel free to leave a link to your post and I’ll stop by!

All The Forever Things

All the Forever Things

How did I get it?:
NetGalley- thanks to Albert Whitman & Company

Previously reviewed by the same author:

Synopsis:

“How many times have you saved me?” I ask Bree.

She grins. “Don’t you mean how many times have we saved each other?”

Nothing is forever. Gabe knows that more than most girls. After all, she lives in a funeral home (it’s the family business), and she gets that everything in the world dies eventually – people, rumors, fashion trends, the nickname “Graveyard Gabe.” But her best friend, Bree, has been a constant in her life; it’s always been the two of them together. Until Bree starts seeing a guy who stands for everything Gabe thought they were against. How could Bree change her mind and go for someone like Bryce Johnson?

Now Gabe doesn’t know who her friend is anymore. And the only person who seems to have time for her is Hartman, the new guy, who is somehow not weirded out by the funeral home stuff (well, a little). Still, Gabe doesn’t want to lose her mind over a guy the way Bree has, so she holds back.

But a very strange prom night (driving the family hearse instead of a limo) will change what Gabe knows about friendship, love, life, and everything that comes after – forever and otherwise.

Thought:

I have been a fan of Jolene Perry’s writing since I read The Summer I Found You, I recommend her books whenever I can. When I noticed that she had a new book coming out, I was very excited. I love reading her books because they’re often deeper than you might expect. This book is no exception! I wouldn’t say that this is my favourite book by Jolene, but it’s still a decent read which is well worth checking out!

All The Forever Things centres around Gabriella (Gabe) who lives in a funeral home as it’s the business her family are in. Gabe is a little strange, choosing to dress like Wednesday Addams after being teased about her life. Gabe thought she was happy enough alongside her good friend Bree. However, when Bree starts changing who she is when dating Gabe’s worst enemy, Gabe feels like she’s losing her best friend. Hartman, a new guy at school, comes into her life and isn’t weirded out by the funeral home business. Gabe holds back, not wanting to become one of those girls who changes herself. Gabe’s battle to keep her friend Bree takes a turn for the worse, when she drives Bree, her boyfriend and their group to prom…in a hearse…

I really liked the story line which I felt was quite unique. Gabe was certainly an interesting character. I have the feeling that you’re either going to love or hate her. She’s not the most likeable and can come across quite selfish and unaware of other’s problems. Bree is an interesting character too, I liked that she didn’t have it easy. Hartman was a good character, although I wish we had heard more from him. Hartman had a tragic past, and I feel that wasn’t as in depth as it could have been. I got past not liking some of the characters straight away, because I think that they all grew during the course of the story.

All The Forever Things is a decent YA contemporary read. It may not be my favourite book by Jolene Perry, but I think it’s worth picking up, especially if you’re a fan of the genre!

Would I recommend it?:
Yes- 3.5 stars

A unique YA read!

A Week In The Life Of A Primary School Teacher- The show is almost here!

Every Sunday (hopefully) I shall be posting a personal post about my life as a primary school teacher. I currently work at a primary school teaching Lower Key Stage 2. My training posts on this subject were really successful and so therapeutic for me, therefore I’ve decided to continue posting on the topic. I will not be naming any children, or the school where I work. If personal posts aren’t your thing then feel free to skip these posts. I won’t mind! Bookish goodness returns as normal Monday-Saturday!

It’s all go in these parts this week and for the coming two weeks as well. I am going to be crawling to the finish line. Just 10 more working days and then I’m off for two weeks! Yippee! I plan to read lots and not spend most of my holiday working…

We’re coming up to our year group’s school production which I’m equal parts excited/nervous for. I’m nervous for the children who have worked incredibly hard. I’m also excited for them to show their loved ones just how hard they’ve worked. There are a couple of children who  sing solos and it makes my heart almost burst with pride! ❤

I have to say, I’m looking forward to getting back to some sort of normal though. Our usual school routine has gone out of the window meaning their behaviour has been a little erratic! I would say roll on the next week but I’ve got 3 parent-teacher evenings! Argh!

Crawling to the finish line…

Blog Tour- Pilot Jane and The Runaway Plane

How did I get it?:
I received it from the publisher for the book tour!

Synopsis:

Join Pilot Jane, a fun and fearless airline captain, as she travels the world with her best friend Rose, a high-speed passenger jet. Together Jane and Rose have exciting adventures and form a perfect team, delivering their passengers safely to destinations as far afield as Alaska and Australia. But when disaster strikes and Rose falls ill, Jane is paired with ‘lean, mean flying machine’ Mighty Mitch. Can she still get the Queen to her party on time? Featuring a clever and courageous heroine, this action-packed rhyming story celebrates ‘Girl Power’ and shows what you can achieve if you work together. Fasten your seatbelt and get ready for take-off!

Thoughts:

I am a primary school teacher, so when I had the opportunity to read this book, I decided to test it on some guinea pigs. Well, some classes at school. I read it with two groups of children. Year 1s (5-6 year olds) and Year 3/4 (7-9 year olds). The book went down well with both classes. Here are some words from their mouths… (real names have been changed)

  • I liked it because it was adventurous. (Mandy, Age 7)

  • I like it because it’s got teamwork. (Natasha, Age 8)

  • I liked it because it had everything a story needs. I think it would be great for younger children. (Tim, Age 9)

  • I think the moral of the story is teamwork. (Hannah, Age 6)

  • I liked it because when the plane broke down, Jane had to  learn to work with a different plane that she didn’t really know.  (Harry, Age 7)

  • I like it because it was for boys and girls. I thought at the start it was just for girls but it changed into boys as well. (Tobias, Age 8)

  • I liked the book because Mitch and Jane had to work together. (Jason, Age 8)

  • I liked the girl and boy power! (Lauren, Age 5)

As for me, I think it’s such a cute book for young children. Both the infant and junior school children took the message from the book, which makes it highly successful in my eyes!

Fairy Tales- Two Brothers

Well, this was a strange one! It centres around two brothers who are both into different things. One brother is into science and has a thirst for knowledge. The other brother is into justice and truth. Both brothers have the Spirit of Human Genius to inspire them. The brothers grow up to be well celebrated scientists and politicians. Their names were Hans Christian and Anders. Okay…

If I’m honest, I didn’t really ‘get’ this one!

Next Fairy Tale- The Old Tombstone