#Bookexcursion, It's Monday! What Are You Reading?, Middle Grade Literature, Picture Books, Poetry

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 3/23/20


Beagles and Books is excited to share our latest reads in It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #IMWAYR is a community of bloggers who link up to share what they are reading. Kellee Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen Vincent of Teach Mentor Texts decided to give it a #kidlit focus and encourage everyone who participates to visit at least 3 of the other #kidlit book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.

Today marks the second week of schools being closed in Maryland.  I thought I would actually get more reading  and reviewing done but I must admit it has been harder to sit down and concentrate than I thought.  Besides long walks with Bella, I have spent time checking in with family and friends, cleaning, and decluttering.  In an effort to support parents and other educators, I write a blog post compiling a list of free digital guided reading resources.  I also helped my school community connect by creating a Facebook page and YouTube channel.  Here’s hoping this week I have better focus to read and review.  I am a glass half full person so I am looking for the silver lining in all of this, which to be thankful for the gift of time in a comfortable home with electricity, water, food, my husband, books, and of course, my sweet girl Bella.  Wishing everyone well!

Our Recent Reads:

Write! Write! Write! by Amy Ludwig Vanderwater Illustrated by Ryan O’Rourke


In my very first #IMWAYR blog post, I reviewed Read! Read! Read!, Amy Ludwig Vanderwater’s inspiring collection of poetry celebrating reading.  Imagine my excitement when I discovered she has written a companion book dedicated to writing.  Her first poem titled “Our Alphabet” is a perfect beginning reminding young writers that “words are always different but the letters are the same.”  Subsequent poems focuses on stages of the writing process (“Ideas (Like Peaches”), genres of writing (“Opinion”) as well as the joys (“Anything Can Grow”) and pitfalls (“Same Feeling”) of writing.   As a teacher, not only can Write! Write! Write! be a mentor text for poetry, specific poems can also be a way to introduce types of writing such as a small moment narrative (“My Story”).  O’Rourke’s gorgeous and inclusive artwork complements Vanderwater’s lively text which encourages budding writers to persevere.  Can’t wait to share this motivating treasury of poems with students and teachers.  Thanks to the author Amy Ludwig Vanderwater for sharing an F & G with Beagles and Books.  Write! Write! Write! recently published last week on March 17, 2020.


Green on Green by Diana White Illustrated by Felicita Salas

Green on Green is a serene and charming story about a family’s journey through the seasons in their coastal community.  While the color green is a thread throughout the entire book, other colors are emphasized in each season.  The story begins in spring with the young boy picking yellow flowers, drinking lemonade, and splashing in stomping in puddles in his yellow rain boots. Each subsequent season is introduced on a wordless two page spread.  In summer, blue is the prominent color. The boy and his family are enjoying the beach, the sea, and picnics in the field.   Fall is depicted in brown and orange with leaves changing, pumpkins growing, and a Thanksgiving meal shared. Not only does winter bring snow but also the arrival of a baby for the family.  On the last page spread, spring has returned bringing the story back full circle.

White’s text is succinct and symphonic and coupled with Sala’s tender and vivid illustrations evoke a sense of peace and warmth. Green on Green is a celebration of family, seasons, change, and community which makes it a wonderful read aloud for children.  Thanks to Barbara Fisch of Blue Slip Media and the publisher Beach Lane Books/Simon and Schuster for sharing a copy with Beagles and Books.  Green on Green celebrated its book birthday on March 17, 2020.

Bella’s Dog Pick of the Week

Wanting to spread the dog love, Beagles and Books has a weekly feature of highlighting a literary selection with a canine main character.


Blue Daisy by Helen Frost Illustrated by Rob Shepperson 

Friends and next door neighbors, Sam and Katie see a stray dog in the neighborhood.  Dirty and skinny, they are desperate to befriend it.  But when the dog returns to Sam’s backyard, Sam and Katie make a impulsive decision which they later deeply regret. Ironically, their mistake has some positive consequences for now people in their neighborhood begin treating the dog with more kindness. In addition, Sam and Katie learn that the Tracy twins aren’t as mean as they once thought.

Stories about stray or shelter dogs always tug at my heart. Blue Daisy is a uniquely structured novel because it is told in both poetry and prose by Sam and Katie respectively.  Even the font is different for each account.  Written in under 80 pages with detailed full page black and white illustrations every few pages,  Blue Daisy is a heartwarming story with themes of friendship, contrition, forgiveness, and trust.  It is a text that would definitely prompt great discussion for students.  And the author also includes recipes which is a nice bonus.  Thanks to the publisher Holiday House for sharing an ARC at the 2019 NCTE convention. Blue Daisy recently published last week on March 17, 2020.



Bella & I thank you for visiting Beagles and Books. Happy Reading!

9 thoughts on “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 3/23/20”

  1. I also thought I’d be getting more reading done. My concentration is not so great now. I’ve read a lot of picture books last week, but with the library closed I’ll run out of those soon! I am looking forward to reading Write! Write Write! and using it with students. I think it’s one of those books that I can just go ahead and buy – no preview necessary! Hopefully #BookExcursion can meet up virtually in the coming days!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It was tough to concentrate so I focused more on cleaning and decluttering. I am hoping this week I will be more focused to just sit and read. I think part of me also feels a little guilty. Wishing you well and I definitely am looking forward to meeting #bookexcursion friends virtually this week. Stay safe and well Lisa!


  2. First, I love your beagles. They are adorable! Second, it’s okay that you haven’t been able to read and review much during this time. It’s definitely a difficult time and just make sure you are counting your blessings and make sure you have that me time every now and then too! I appreciate you and your blog. I just started my first blog yesterday and am eager to share some love and positivity during this time.


    1. Thanks for the kind words Sierra and congrats on starting your blog. Please share the link when it is available to read. The kid lit blogging community is so supportive which I appreciate especially now more than ever.


  3. It is hard to concentrate. By the time you check in with elderly family and friends on the phone, listen to the daily briefings, get some exercise, etc. the day is gone. It’s tough getting used to this new normal. The books you shared look terrific, and I’ll definitely have a long list to take to the library, once it reopens. Stay healthy and safe!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Best wishes to you, Laura. I move from task to task with little concentration. Somehow knowing I’m home all day is harder. I have Write! Write! Write! & love it, but now need to share it, too. Green on Green is new to me and sounds lovely. I know about Blue Daisy, will try to read it some day. Thanks for everything!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Write! Write! Write! looks fantastic. I may have to get this one for my hubby (A writing professor)! And Green on Green looks great, too — I’m enjoying seasons books so much, lately. Can’t wait to read it for myself. Thanks for sharing, Laura!

    Liked by 1 person

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