from the publisher: ALABAMA MOON by watt key

Dog Reads is a blog that features children’s books with key dog characters. Sometimes an adult dog book sneaks in but for the most part Dog Reads aims to help kids, their parents, teachers, and librarians find dog books.

From the publisher:

For as long as ten-year-old Moon can remember, he has lived out in the forest in a shelter with his father. They keep to themselves, their only contact with other human beings an occasional trip to the nearest general store. When Moon’s father dies, Moon follows his father’s last instructions: to travel to Alaska to find others like themselves. But Moon is soon caught and entangled in a world he doesn’t know or understand; he’s become property of the government he has been avoiding all his life. As the spirited and resourceful Moon encounters constables, jails, institutions, lawyers, true friends, and true enemies, he adapts his wilderness survival skills and learns to survive in the outside world, and even, perhaps, make his home there.

Alabama Moon is a 2007 Bank Street – Best Children’s Book of the Year.

from the publisher: FOURMILE by watt key

Dog Reads is a blog that features children’s books with key dog characters. Sometimes an adult dog book sneaks in but for the most part Dog Reads aims to help kids, their parents, teachers, and librarians find dog books.

From the publisher:

Twelve-year-old Foster knows in his gut that Dax Ganey, the man dating his widowed mother, is a bad seed. Then a mysterious stranger arrives at their Alabama farm, a former Army Ranger in Iraq rambling across the country, and Foster believes he has found an ally against Dax. The stranger proves a fascinating mentor, full of wisdom and secrets. And Dax soon has reason to resent not just him and Foster but also Foster’s mother. A spurned Dax will be a dangerous enemy, but Foster is increasingly aware that the stranger is just as dangerous, if not more so.

From Watt Key, the author of one of the most highly acclaimed children’s survival adventures of the last decade, comes Fourmile, a tautly wound new novel reminiscent of classic westerns, about a boy caught in the middle of a clash that may turn out to be his own battle to fight.

the stars on my audio bookshelf:

HOW TO RAISE AN ADULT

by Julie Lythcott-Haims

From the publisher: A provocative manifesto that exposes the harms of helicopter parenting and sets forth an alternate philosophy for raising preteens and teens to self-sufficient young adulthood.
In How to Raise an Adult, Julie Lythcott-Haims draws on research; on conversations with admissions officers, educators, and employers; and on her own insights as a mother and as a student dean to highlight the ways in which overparenting harms children, their stressed-out parents, and society at large. While empathizing with the parental hopes and, especially, fears that lead to overhelping, Lythcott-Haims offers practical alternative strategies that underline the importance of allowing children to make their own mistakes and develop the resilience, resourcefulness, and inner determination necessary for success.
Relevant to parents of toddlers as well as of 20-somethings – and of special value to parents of teens – this audiobook is a rallying cry for those who wish to ensure that the next generation can take charge of their own lives with competence and confidence.

“A must read for any parent! Wish I had had this book when my kids were younger. Thank you, Julie for writing it.”

BORN A CRIME

by Trevor Noah

Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood is the compelling, inspiring, and comically sublime story of a young man’s coming-of-age, set during the twilight of apartheid and the tumultuous days of freedom that followed—from one of the comedy world’s brightest new voices and The Daily Show host Trevor Noah.

I so enjoyed the audio book! Trevor Noah read it himself and was fully engaging.

Born a Crime is not just a story about Trevor and South Africa. It also gives readers a view into Trevor’s mom of whom I’m a huge fan. Go Mom!

THE PRINCESS DIARIST

by Carrie Fisher

Carrie on how she felt about Harrison:

The itty bitty spidered his way up my water spout

He little Jack Hornered his way into my corner

And now I can’t get him out

He ate all my porridge, sat in my chair

Slept in my bed, washed himself into my hair

Hey, all you King’s horses!

Whether you’re horse’s asses or men,

Could you pretty please piece my heart back together again?

Journal notes from the filming of the first Star Wars movies

RIP Carrie Fisher. May the force be always with you.

SYMPHONY FOR THE CITY OF THE DEAD

by M.T. Anderson

“Engaging, impeccably well-researched and written.”

Dmitri Shostakovich

The author

SALT TO THE SEA

by Ruta Sepetys

“Brought salt to my eyes–happy and sad ones!”

Starts and ends with these words.

From the publisher: THE LAST DOGS THE VANISHING by christopher holt

Dog Reads is a blog that features children’s books with key dog characters. Sometimes an adult dog book sneaks in but for the most part Dog Reads aims to help kids, their parents, teachers, and librarians find dog books.

From the publisher:

When all the humans in his world disappear, Max, a yellow Labrador Retriever, begins the search for his family. He knows that if he can just find Madame Curie, a wise, old black Lab, she’ll be able to help. Madame had a premonition of astonishing events to come — she might know where Max’s family is.

But Max can’t make the journey alone. Joined by friends Rocky and Gizmo, Max sets off to find Madame. Along the way, the trio must face a pack of angry wolves, forage for food in a land where kibble is akin to gold, befriend a house full of cats, and outsmart a gang of subway rats. Ultimately, they’ll have to escape from the biggest threat of all: the Corporation, a “perfect” society for dogs and by dogs, where nothing is quite as it seems.

The Last Dogs: The Vanishing is a thrilling adventure and a tale of three unlikely friends on an epic quest to find their people — and bring them home.

4th Annual Thanksgiving Author Talk: Writing Contest 3rd Grade Winners

Bobbie Pyron, author of A DOG’S WAY HOME, THE DOGS OF WINTER, and LUCKY STRIKE, and I did a school visit at Trailside Elementary School in Park City, Utah before the Thanksgiving holiday. We hosted a writing contest for the 3rd and 5th graders and judged their entries. Today’s blog post features the 3rd grade winning and finalist entries. Each child was asked to write a Fibonacci poem about Thanksgiving, family, friends or a pet.

3rd-grade-winners

Congratulations to Janie who produced the winning entry!

winner-janie

Finalists included Ty, Lily, Brocton and Emma.

Here are their poems:

finalist-ty

finalist-lily

finalist-brocton

finalaist-emma

Special thanks to:

All of the kids who participated in the workshop and the teachers who supported them.

Sue Beasom, librarian extraordinaire for inviting us to her school.

Debbie Gonzales for developing the Fibonacci writing exercise.

Anjuli Turner for taking photographs.

All materials © 2017 Annemarie O'Brien. Web site by Websy Daisy. Illustration © 2013 by Tim Jessell