Wednesday, February 16, 2011

I'm done...

...reading all the hardcover fiction in the library, that is! Finished up last night with

Zirpoli, Jane. Roots in the Outfield. (1988)
When his father is going to remarry and wants Josh to spend the year with his new family, Josh is reluctant until he becomes unhappy with his baseball team. Josh is afraid of catching the ball; hence, the nickname "Roots", like that of a tree. Things don't go smoothly when he moves in with his father-- they head immediately up to a lake house, Josh's suitcase with all of his baseball memorabilia is lost, and his step-sister Wendy is a brat. Add to this a mysterious stranger who may be the missing baseball Slug Smith, and the transition is difficult. The stranger does turn out to be Slug, however, and he helps Josh overcome his fear of the ball and realize that while he loves his father, he would much rather be back at his old school.

Strengths: A decent enough baseball story, a little mystery, and a realistic portrayal of a boy's difficulty in dealing with divorce.

Weaknesses: A little dated. Josh's father writes him a letter once a week, and there are music and television references that would be lost on students today.

I finished up just in time for the fifth blogiversary of Ms. Yingling Reads!

In my very first post, I mentioned attempting to read all of the hardcover fiction. This morphed into writing reviews of newer books, with an emphasis on books for boys, since there are so many blogs devoted to books for girls.

My mission statement at work is "The right book for the right child at the right time." This blog is an extension of that. I try to stick with succinct reviews, a few author interviews, and some library information. I fail utterly at contests and giveaways, but hope that this is a good tool for students and teachers trying to find good books.

It's been fun. Thanks to my loyal readers for all of your support!

14 comments:

Charlotte said...

Happy blog birthday! I always enjoy reading your pithy reviews.

Jim Randolph said...

Happy birthday, blog!

sarahamata said...

i can't imagine reading all the books i order, much less all the books in my library. you are truly amazing!

Melissa A. said...

I'm looking around my middle school library right now and I cannot IMAGINE reading every novel (and I read a ton!)... what a huge milestone. I envy how intimately you know your collection now and how much help that must be in readers' advisory. Congratulations!

Kate Coombs said...

I like how you cut to the chase, Ms. Y. Happy B-day to your blog!

Jennifer said...

Wow...now you start on the paperbacks, right? Heh heh heh. I love your reviews, you're my go-to blog for middle school collection development!

melissa @ 1lbr said...

Wow! You really read every hardcover in your library? Amazing.

Mrs. F-B's Books Blog said...

You are a maniac! SO impressed!!! Keep up the great work :-)

Bridgette Booth said...

Happy blog birthday! Wishing you many more years of blogging. I have a whole list of books to be read based on your recommendations. So thank you!

Readingjunky said...

Happy Anniversary! I truly appreciate all you have to share.

RJ

Mary said...

Congratulations on finishing your big challenge, AND for reaching your 5th anniversary! I appreciate your blog and helpful reviews so much.

Jacob Austrino said...

Congrats on finishing all the books! I find it amazing when you say: "Genre? Time Period?" And then after those two answers pull out the perfect book. Also Congrats on the fifth anniversary. And finally, congrats on finishing another book. I bet Jane Zirpoli doesn't dislike alphabetical order any more does she? :)

Deb said...

Happy Blogiversary! And thank you for sharing your reviews, thoughts, interviews--just what I love about this blog, no need to give things away, get lots 'o learning.

Iron Guy Carl said...

Congrats on 5 years! And on reading EVERY fiction book in your library!! That's a task that would make even the manliest MANLY MAN quake with fear. Once again, you have proved how richly you deserve your Honorary Guyhood.

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