It’s Monday and Here’s What I’m Reading #IMWAYR: Monday, December 1st., 2014

Mon Reading Button PB to YA

It’s Monday, What are You Reading is a meme hosted by Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing Readers and Sheila at BookJourney

I walked away from NCTE with many bags of books, the most special of which was one by my friend Margaret Simon.  I saved  Blessen  for the day after the day after Thanksgiving – Saturday – the perfect day to find a comfortable reading spot and lose myself in the book. This was so easy to do, because Margaret has written a story  that pulls you right into a marvelously realized setting with characters you feel immediately connected and drawn to.  Here’s the Goodreads summary:

Ever since a hurricane sent a water oak through the roof of Pawpee’s house crippling her grandfather, Blessen has lived with her mother, and grandfather Pawpee in a FEMA trailer. An accident involving her pet chicken, Blue, pushes Blessen into discoveries about faith, death, and her heritage.

I loved Blessen’s open, warm-hearted spirit and her voice.  She is a character embraced by the love of her family , but also one who faces some difficult choices, and there are many important things she needs to figure out: how to cope with death? what does it mean to be bi-racial in a country still unsettled about race?  is it possible to be disappointed in someone and love them all the same?

The cadence of Bayou speech, and the evocative way in which Margaret describes the heat drenched, jasmine scented  South Louisiana summer  makes Blessen a joy to read.   The characters and issues this story explores would make for many rich and wonderful class and book club discussions.

 

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8 thoughts on “It’s Monday and Here’s What I’m Reading #IMWAYR: Monday, December 1st., 2014

  1. I read Blessen a long time ago, & maybe it’s time for a re-read. I think it was before I was even reviewing books on my blog. I also should share this with students, so Tara, thanks for the reminder of how good Margaret’s book is.

  2. I had not heard of this book before but it sounds amazing! I will certainly be looking for it! It makes it so much more meaningful when you know the author! I have enjoyed reading your posts about the NCTE and also your family Thanksgiving and having your lovely children home for the holiday. Yours is one of my favorite blogs! Thanks, Tara!

  3. Tara, I am so moved by your review. What a gift on the first Monday after such a wonderful holiday! Blessen has become like a 4th daughter, her voice is so strong in my head. But to know she affects others the same way means a lot to me. Thanks for spreading Blessen love.

  4. Oh what a beautiful review of Margaret’s book. 🙂 I hope I find it in our Singapore libraries. If not, I shall definitely recommend. 🙂 Glad to have finally met you at NCTE!

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