Sunday, March 30, 2014

Will You Survive the Testing? No, not that testing #IMWAYR March 31, 2014

It's Monday! What are you Reading is a meme began by Sheila at Book Journeys as a way to share what you read and/or reviewed the previous week and what is in store for the upcoming week. It's also a great chance to see what others are reading. I first learned about it from Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki of Unleashing Readers and have become a regular linked up blog. Thanks #PLN

For some time now, I have been so incredibly busy that any time I tried to sit down to read, I would fall asleep due to sheer exhaustion. This week, I have  been cataloging and processing new library books like a maniac. I have readied over a hundred and fifty new books for my students and several books on my TBR pile. Below are some titles I enjoyed this week and then there were two I really found read worthy.

Let me start with the most exciting book I have read this year. The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau. I rate this book highly because it does what I like goods novel to do. They unnerve me and possess me. In the midst of a pleasant dinner, snippets of dialog echo in my mind pulling me away from friends and family dinner chatter. My dreams are invaded with desperate scenarios where I am a participant in the testing. While I work in the garden or clean my house, I stop mid task and run grab my book just for a few minutes to fall back into the story. My family is wise to me and I hear them laughing about it. 

I also finished The Coldest Girl in Coldtown, a book that intrigued and disturbed me with its violence. I liked Tana, a strong female character that when faced with the massacre of many of her friends by vampires, chooses to rescue not only her bitten and infected ex-boyfriend but also a ruby red eye vampire in chains. She drives them both to Coldtown fearing that she too may be infected due to a fang scratch on her leg. In this story, vampires are rockstars that draw young people to coldtowns hoping to be "turned". This novel is not for those who are afraid of the dark.  

These books were a bit milder and fun to read. 


I read 2 more Texas Bluebonnet titles this week. Pickle (still reading) and Lester's Dreadful Sweaters.

Sparky was pretty darn cute and my grandson loved the idea of a pet sloth. My mom would have let me have a sloth for a pet too. I have raised cats, turtles, fish, frogs, a rat, dogs, ducks, bunnies, and a billy goat named Blanco Diablo who lived up to his name. I was also the custodian of two rescue animals a badger and a javelina, both who eventually were released back into the wild.
Don't you just love the sea turtle painting my sister Jypsy made for my birthday. Our school mascot is the sea turtle so I have long wanted a painting for my library. 

Mr. Bones approved of the books I chose for Spring lessons. We both love bears and Kevin Henkes and Karma Wilson have created some wonderful bear books. 

I am so excited because in just a few days it will be time to depart for the Texas Library Association conference. It is considered the ultimate of state library conferences. I will be traveling up with some librarian buddies and have made plans to meet up with some of my Twitter PLN. If you are headed to TLA, please let me know. I would love to met you in person. 

Have a lovely reading week.


  1. I had a couple of nit-picky issues with The Testing and just never really gave it a chance, but I love hearing about your experience with it. I love getting lost in a story and being drawn back in even after the book is finished. I have seen Sparky! around and can't wait to check it out! Have a great week! ~Megan

    1. Thanks Megan. I am curious about what you didn't like. For me, I couldn't remember what Cia looked like other than she was small.

  2. Julee,
    Thanks for all of these great books that you shared! I am interested in THE COLDEST GIRL IN COLDTOWN. Someone else posted about it last week, and now I am even more intrigued, after reading your review.
    I hope you have a wonderful reading week!

    1. Thanks Ricki, I am sure you will enjoy it. I highly recommend The Testing also. Lots of chills and thrills.

  3. Hi there Julee, do have fun at the Conference, it looks like a wonderful gathering. I do have to find Sparky, it looks so sweet and cute. Glad to hear your thoughts about The Testing, now I am definitely intrigued! Holly Black is a hit-or-miss for me, I liked Doll Bones last year but did not fall in love with it. Will check out Coldest Girl - I've read contrasting reviews about that one so far.

    1. While I enjoyed The Coldest Girl in Coldtown, I like Doll Bones much more. Possibly because I connected so well with the background details of the story-bone china, Carnegie Libraries, etc. We also read it as a #virtualbookclub selection. Books are always much more enjoyable when you read them together with friends. Thanks for posting a comment.

  4. Ooo... now I'm intrigued by The Testing!

    I loved Coldest Girl, but I'm a huge vampire story fan. I've felt like they have gotten so much "tamer" lately... too much romance and not enough horror... and I loved how this one went back to the roots of vampire lore. I did also love Doll Bones... it was creepy for whole other reasons.


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