Category Archives: book reviews


I review books. I review a lot of books. But very few books manage to come into my life with the kind of spot-on, pitch-perfect, insert-other-heartwarming-hyphenated-cliche-here (and to think I’m spending tomorrow teaching my students to avoid cliches!) timing as … Continue reading

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Five Reasons I Hate Les Miserables (The Show, Not the Book)

A helpful local billboard has informed me that Les Miserables, the touring stage production, will be in town soon (or has already been in town – I forget). My first thought: “Ugh, didn’t I just see that?” I did.  And whatever … Continue reading

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Of All The Books I’ve Reviewed This Year, Here Are the Ones You Should Read First

In reverse chronological order, roughly; not necessarily the order in which I endorse them. 1. BYE, MZUNGU! by Janice Ellen Lever.  Lever’s memoir of her eighteen years running a kindergarten in Uganda is funny, adventurous, sweet, and absorbing all at … Continue reading

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Dear Teen Me: Let Me Tell You About DEAR TEEN ME

Dear Teen Me, A few days before your 30th birthday, you’ll get an e-mail from the folks at Zest Books, asking you to review – and blog about – their upcoming collection of letters from YA authors to their teenage … Continue reading

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Book Review: KILLING THE POORMASTER by Holly Metz

In my tenth grade history class, we spent approximately three days on the Depression (1929-1941ish).  And we learned the following things: The Depression was very depressing!  Everything was sepia-toned and ill-fitting, one-shouldered overalls were the national uniform. No one in … Continue reading

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Book Review: AMERICAS by Jason Lee Norman

If Jason Lee Norman’s Americas was a  dog, it would be one of those toy chihuahuas you laugh at while it barks madly about how it’s going to gnaw your shoelaces off, buddy, just you wait – and that you … Continue reading

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NPR Cuts ENDER’S GAME From Best YA Fiction Poll, Because Violence

NPR’s recent Best YA Fiction Poll recently produced a list of 100 winners that has everyone talking – mostly, about what’s not on it. NPR explains that best-beloved classics like A Wrinkle in Time and Are You There, God?  It’s Me, Margaret didn’t make … Continue reading

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