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

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 8/31/20

Bella and I are thrilled 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.link up below, leave a comment, and support other IMWAYR bloggers by visiting and commenting on at least three of the other linked blogs.

Our Recent Reads


 Squidding Around: Fish Feud by Kevin Sherry

Do know kids who like to laugh AND learn?  Then you need to check out Sherry’s new young graphic novel series. In the first book of the series, readers meet Squizzard, a silly squid who is always squidding (I mean kidding) around.  His best friend Toothy is a great white shark who takes life more seriously and always allows Squizzard to be charge. But Squizzard’s need to be the center of attention finally takes its toll on the gentle giant and Toothy announces he can’t be friends with Squizzard anymore.  Can Squizzard find a way to mend his friendship with Toothy?  This graphic novel has so much kid appeal! The illustrations, the characters, the ocean puns and jokes, and the marine facts embedded into the story.  What I loved most is the message about what it means to be a good friend.  With the help of Shay, a smart seahorse, Squizzard learns he doesn’t always have to be the leader and true friends say they are sorry and really mean it. Thanks to Scholastic for sharing an ARC with my #bookexcursion group.  Fish Feud publishes tomorrow on September 1, 2020. 

Beatrix Potter, Scientist by Lindsay H. Metcalf  Illustrated by Junyi Wu

When I was a young reader, I would check out Beatrix Potter books all the time from my library.  Not only did I love the stories and illustrations, I also loved their unique size which were so smaller than other books.  Until I read the title, I had no idea of her interest in science. In this picture book biography, author Metcalf’s melodic text tells how Beatrix’s love of art stemmed from her passion for nature.  Art was a way to capture all her observations of plants and animals.  And with a microscope as a tool, Beatrix can see even more details and her art becomes more precise.  With support from a postman and Scottish naturalist Charles McIntosh Beatrix turns her focus to mycology, the study of fungi and becomes among the first to grow mushrooms in Britain.  Her research leds to her share her findings with a scientist at the Royal Botanic Garden at Kew, but sadly, she is told her paper needs more work.  For reasons unknown, Beatrix ceases her research ending that chapter of her life.  But her love of nature and science remains and influences her in illustrating Peter Rabbit and other animal adventures.  Wu’s sketchlike illustrations warmly show Beatrix’s curiosity and dedication.  An author’s note, timeline, and bibliography are also included which shares more information about how Potter may have had a different legacy if not for the inequality she faced as a female scientist in Victorian England.  Thanks to Albert Whitman for sharing a copy with my #bookexcursion group.  Beatrix Potter, Scientist releases tomorrow on September 1, 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.

Horace and Bunwinkle by P.J. Gardner Illustrated by David Mottram

For urbanite Boston Terrier Horace, what’s worse than moving from the city to the country?  Getting a potbellied pig named Bunwinkle as a sister!  Protecting his human Eleanor is going to be challenging enough on the wide open farm and now he has to watch over an exuberant pig too?  Horace and Bunwinkle begin to bond after watching Andie’s Adventures, a cartoon featuring a dog and pig detective duo.  When Eleanor misplaces her car keys, they decide to take on their first case as pet detectives but finding the key lands them both in the vet with minor injuries.  At the vet, Bunwinkle spies a bulletin board with 9 missing animal posters and recalls Smokey, the stray cat mentioning how animals were being stolen from homes.  Looks like Bunwinkle and Horace have their next case to solve but the case becomes very personal when Bunwinkle goes out solo and gets pignapped.  It is now up to Horace to rescue Bunwinkle.  

So many reasons to adore Horace and Bunwinkle!  First, the character development.  Debut author Gardner has created two characters you will fall in love with.  Despite his stuffiness, Horace has a heart of gold and takes his job of big brother seriously.  And Bunwinkle’s pep is infectious for she made me smile and laugh with her spunk and energy.  Watching their relationship evolve was humorous and heartwarming. Next, the intriguing plot with the mystery will keep readers engaged.  And the format is also appealing especially for those readers transitioning to middle grade.  Horace and Bunwinkle is under 200 pages with short chapters and charming illustrations every few pages.  So excited to share their new series (yes, more adventures to come) with both kids and teachers! Thanks to the author for sharing an ARC of Horace and Bunwinkle.  It publishes soon on September 15, 2020. 

Bella and I thank you for visiting Beagles and Books! 

“People love dogs. You can never go wrong adding a dog to the story.” Jim Butcher
#IMWAYR is dedicated to dear Etta, my original book beagle. Blessed that Etta is part of my story.

2 thoughts on “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 8/31/20”

  1. Squidding Around looks so cute! And I’m especially happy to learn of Beatrix Potter, Scientist — adding it to my list right away. It’s nice to be back to visiting IMWAYR blogs this week after a long moving break. I hope you have a fantastic reading week, Laura!

    Liked by 1 person

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