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kimberly.burke

kimberly.burke

Joined September 2016

MG for work, YA for fun // #weneeddiversebooks
review
kimberly.burke
The Belles | Dhonielle Clayton
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Pickpick

Beauty isn't always pretty -- my current reaction to this book is something like 😱.

Great book, great audiobook. Unfortunately now I have to wait for the sequel...

4 likes1 stack add
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kimberly.burke
As the Crow Flies | Melanie Gillman
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On a big graphic/comics kick this week -- here are a few of the MG/YA ones I've read so far.
(If only I had taken a picture with This One Summer too, to lean even harder into the summer theme. Well, summer, and faerie realm/1910s San Fran...)

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kimberly.burke
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When Leo discovers that her family of bakers are actually brujas with food magic, she decides she wants to get into the family business ASAP...even if she's "too young." But when she tries to help out her friend Caroline, Leo's spells go a bit awry and the girls scramble to fix them before it's too late.

Super fun read with delightful magic—readers will get hungry for sweet treats, and more stories! Can't wait for the others in the series.

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kimberly.burke
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When Paloma's mother drags her to her late father's birthplace of Mexico City for the summer, Paloma is not exactly thrilled. That is, until her new friends and Spanish tutors turn her onto a mystery involving Frida Kahlo, and she gets to put all of her knowledge from her favorite mystery novels to good use.

As Paloma does her best to crack the case, she learns more about Spanish, Mexico, and of course, Frida Kahlo, in this short, fun MG mystery.

4 likes1 stack add1 comment
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kimberly.burke
Speak Easy, Speak Love | McKelle George
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kimberly.burke
Oddity | Sarah Cannon
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"Last week a bologna sandwich in the back of someone's locker developed sentience and busted its way out, attacking bystanders' ankles. It took staff a while to sort out what was blood and what was ketchup. I don't know why things like that never happen during spelling tests."

A fun, weird little Nightvale-ian middle grade with mostly invisible monsters, not-at-all ominous puppets, grumpy kombucha scoby, missing twins, exploding pizza, and more.

5 likes1 stack add
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kimberly.burke
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MG Double Feature last week!

1. Stella Díaz Has Something to Say (Angela Dominguez) - Stella thinks about fish, friends, and her Mexican American identity, as she tries to find her place. Young MG (voice and MC), cute contemporary

2. The Serpent's Secret (Sayantani DasGupta) - Kiran discovers she's a princess and has to journey through lands she thought were only stories and fight rakkhosh to get her parents back. Funny adventure thru folktales!

3 likes1 comment
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kimberly.burke
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Pickpick

Natalie's mom has been sleeping in her dark room for months and Natalie doesn't want to talk about it. When her science teacher mentions an egg drop competition, she realizes could use the prize money to take her mother to see the Cobalt Blue Orchids and make her happy again.
A story about depression, family, friendships, biracial identity, and of course, egg drops, The Science of Breakable Things is a strong MG with equal parts realism and hope.

6 likes2 stack adds2 comments
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kimberly.burke
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Sunshine and tales of drunken shenanigans make a pretty good pairing.

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kimberly.burke
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"Librarians are warrior princes and princesses wielding book love like swords! We are ever vigilant, curious, intelligent, and kind. Libraries are the banners that we carry proudly into the fray! Forward, ever forward!" - Susan K. McClelland

Figured I should check out this book since I work in a library! Favorite quote so far featured above.

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kimberly.burke
Thornhill | Pam Smy
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Shook things up this week with this super quick spoooooky read. It features two stories, one told through illustrations, the other through journal entries (think Brian Selznick's books), and totally gave me shivers. Loved the art, even though this book left me as haunted as Thornhill...

(Note: sort of middle grade? But might be too scary for some (like me!) Also, cw for desc of some psychological bullying/abuse)

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kimberly.burke
The Harlem Charade | Natasha Tarpley
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Pickpick

Jin, Alex, and Elvin join forces in Harlem to try and figure out why Elvin's grandfather was attacked, and stumble onto a much bigger mystery. Soon they're collecting clues and learning about a Harlem art movement in the 60s, and trying to save their neighborhood from the gentrifying forces of a local, scheming politician. Fun MG mystery with a spotlight on Black culture and art in mid-century Harlem, as well as the topic of gentrification.

1 like2 stack adds1 comment
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kimberly.burke
Rise of the Jumbies | Tracey Baptiste
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When kids on the island start disappearing around water, folks suspect the half-jumbie in their midst, Corinne. She wants to help but it's going to take a lot—Mama D'Leau, mermaids, friends, a journey across the ocean, and a fight with an old enemy—to get them back. A powerful story about friendship, complicated family dynamics, history, prejudice, identity, and the power and pain of memories. Even better than the first, a definite recommend.

5 likes1 stack add1 comment
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kimberly.burke
Alias | Brian Michael Bendis, Michael Gaydos
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After reading a lot of all-ages comics/graphic novels recently, I mixed it up with some decidedly adult fare. I had been meaning to check out Jessica Jones' adventures since I first saw the show, and thanks to a great library network, I finally got the chance!

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kimberly.burke
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Double dose of superheroes this weekend:

1. Not Your Villain (C.B. Lee) - sequel/companion to Not Your Sidekick, featuring shapeshifter Bells as the lead. He's joined by Jess and the rest of the crew for a book that might be better than the first! (YA)

2. Geeks, Girls, and Secret Identities (Mike Jung) - Vincent Wu and his friends find themselves trying to deal with a massive robot, an out-of-whack superhero, and *gasp!* a GIRL. (MG)

5 likes2 stack adds
review
kimberly.burke
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Mia Chen is on a family trip back to her mother's hometown in China, when her aunt disappears. No one thinks it's suspicious, but Mia knows better, and embarks on a quest to solve ancient riddles and find her aunt...and maybe some treasure.

The mystery itself felt a little shorter than I had expected, but it was still a relatively satisfying arc. Overall it's a quick, fun MG clue mystery set in Fuzhou with solid family storylines and ~treasure~.

4 likes1 stack add1 comment
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kimberly.burke
The First Rule of Punk | Celia C. Perez
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⚡️ Sweet stack of MG spines ⚡️

#weneeddiversebooks #middlegrade

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kimberly.burke
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Really into MG/kid-friendly graphic novels lately, and the Lumberjanes are just the best! (Both the books, and the hard core scouts.) If there was a Lumberjane troop around that I could join to make cool friends and deal with supernatural shenanigans, I'd be there in a minute.

Fav line: "What's the story, Wishbone?" (#90skid)

Fav character: The fierce, spunky bundle of hyperactivity and heart eyes for everything, little miss Ripley, of course

review
kimberly.burke
The Witch Boy | Molly Ostertag
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Aster just wants it be a witch, but in his magical family girls are witches and boys are shapeshifters—no exceptions. Bad things happen when people mess with the way it's always been...but Aster knows he's truly a witch. A super cute MG graphic novel about not suppressing who you really are—and friends and family and magic of course! Great art too, tonally matches the cuteness.

Thanks to the roomie for the loan!
#MG #graphicnovel #magic

4 likes1 stack add
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kimberly.burke
Save Me a Seat | Gita Varadarajan, Sarah Weeks
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Just started this MG school story this morning, but I feel like Joe would probably appreciate the pairing with a plate of tater tots.

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kimberly.burke
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Got to read ACOWAR outside on a beautiful spring day, as the trees dropped little flowers, and kids barely missed crashing into me while joyfully playing tag.

(Page blurred in case of spoilers)
#ACOWAR

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kimberly.burke
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The dynamic between these characters is one of the best parts of the book -- always making me laugh.

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kimberly.burke
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Homemade cure for a Tuesday with a bad case of the Mondays -- TJ gummies and a funny Austen-esque fantasy with POC protagonists (🙌🏼). Took a minute to get into it, but now that the two main characters have joined up, I'm 100% invested.

Thanks to the bookseller who recommended this, and, of course, Trader Joe's for sustenance.

review
kimberly.burke
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A truly funny book about living with mental illness, and choosing to be furiously happy whenever possible. This book made me laugh out loud in quiet places, and highlight more amazing/hilarious/bizarre passages then I could possibly share. If hanging out with Jenny Lawson is half as fun as reading her book, then I am very jealous of her friends.

"Normal is boring. Weird is better. Goats are awesome, but only in small quantities."

7 likes1 stack add1 comment
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kimberly.burke
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"Nothing travels faster than the speed of light with the possible exception of bad news, which obeys its own special laws. The Hingefreel people of Arkintoofle Minor did try to build spaceships that were powered by bad news but they didn't work particularly well and were so extremely unwelcome whenever they arrived anywhere that there wasn't really any point in being there."

One of my favorite series for sure. #inagalaxyfarfaraway #maybookflowers

12 likes1 stack add
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kimberly.burke
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A little bit of #sunshine at the end of a gloomy day, while reading a funny book about mental illness, and taxidermied raccoons.

#maybookflowers

TbrandBeyond Adored this book ❤️ 3y
15 likes1 comment
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kimberly.burke
Dreadnought | April Daniels
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Superhero Dreadnought dies & makes Danny the next one—& her body transforms into the girl she already knew she was. Which is great!...Except now she's out as trans publicly & has to deal with a mix of reactions at school & at home while trying to sort out the whole "superhero" thing. Funny, exciting, & heartbreaking by turns. Daniels balances Danny's normal life & her superhero one, & the characters feel grounded even w/in the heightened universe.

9 likes1 comment
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kimberly.burke
Letters from Camp | Kate Klise
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"Dear Ms. Turner,
Here is my manuscript. I'm calling it Letters from Camp. I didn't make any changes to the notes or letters. I just put everything in chronological order, as you suggested. I think you'll agree that the letters speak for themselves."
---
Doing some research into the format/construction of epistolary novels, so naturally I turned to one of my favorites from childhood. (You can see my sister and I loved it quite a lot...)

9 likes1 comment
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kimberly.burke
Starflight | Melissa Landers
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A mechanically-minded orphan looking to start a new life and the rich heir of a fuel empire find their lives (rather miserably) intertwined as they journey across the galaxy. After change in fortune, they find themselves on a ship with a small, quirky crew, whose actions may not be *entirely* on the up and up.

Solid character development helped win me over after an iffy start, and I was totally ready to be a crew member on Banshee by the end.

6 likes1 comment
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kimberly.burke
March: Book Three | Andrew Aydin, John Lewis
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This graphic memoir series focuses on Rep. John Lewis's involvement in the Civil Rights Movement as Chairman of SNCC, covering the period from the lunch counter sit-ins, to the eventual passing of the Voting Rights Act. This firsthand account shows the incredible sacrifices people made and the dangers they faced in order to fight for equality.

The art really helps brings this story to life. An absolute recommend; very important and well done.

6 likes1 comment
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kimberly.burke
The Secret Keepers | Trenton Lee Stewart
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Reuben's solitary life of urban exploration gets a lot more complicated when he finds an old pocket watch with surprising properties. Suddenly government agents are looking for him, a family of lighthouse keepers are the only ones with answers, and Reuben realizes that his newfound watch comes with great responsibility—and danger.

With a typical TLS trail of clues, this is one that kid detectives, and adults who wish they were, would enjoy.

10 likes1 comment
review
kimberly.burke
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Maps, magic, myths, history, Hawai'i, heart—this book has got a lot of cool elements. Nix's father has dragged his crew across the seas and all through time in order to try and save Nix's late mother. This quest leads them to Oahu, 1884, where Nix learns a lot more about her own history.

Well-developed characters and interesting relationships of all kinds only enhance this historical/magical heist adventure. Can't wait to read the next book!

8 likes1 comment
review
kimberly.burke
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Jess Tran is just your average 17-year-old—she spends her time hanging with her friends, dealing with a major crush, and interning for the city's supervillains.

Tonally similar to The Incredibles, this book is fun and humorous, with a young-YA voice, a good cast of characters, a sweet f/f romance, and a cool futuristic/superhero world. Strong foreshadowing at times, but overall it's entertaining enough that it doesn't much matter!

(⭐️ for cover)

7 likes1 comment
review
kimberly.burke
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Denton has always known he was going to die one day. In fact, he has always known exactly what day that would be—everyone does. But when his deathdate arrives, stuff starts to get really weird...and purple?

A truly bizarre book, but fun. The twisted humor is perfect for YA. Sometimes it seems like the world's just happening to Denton and character development takes a backseat to the never-ending mishaps, but overall it's a funny, unique read.

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kimberly.burke
The Nest | Jon Klassen, Kenneth Oppel
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Holy anxiety Batman! I listened to the audiobook of The Nest and it had me on edge nearly the whole time—definitely the creepiest MG book I've ever read. Steve's baby brother has been sick since birth and the future seems uncertain and bleak, until some strange sorts of angels appear to him in his dreams...

Magical realism at its eeriest; a good read for kids and adults who like to freak themselves out, though maybe not us scaredy-cats...

5 likes3 stack adds1 comment
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kimberly.burke
Vengeance Road | Erin Bowman
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Mehso-so

This book has such amazing cover design -- I was hoping that the contents would match. Unfortunately the characters fell a little flat for me, with relationships that felt forced by plot rather than coming organically from the characters. But the story itself was well-structured, hitting all the essential Western bits, so it's possible that fans of the genre will find enough going for it to enjoy.

#judgedbyitscover #marchintoreading #YA #western

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kimberly.burke
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my #MarchTBR stack of physical books -- a mix of borrowed, bought, library, and gifts. I can't wait to finish up the March series, as the first two books were beautifully done, and I've been waiting to read The Reader for a while! I just picked up Hidden Figures from the library after seeing the film, and I'm excited to learn more about the badass Black women of NACA/NASA. 🚀
#marchintoreading

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kimberly.burke
When the Moon Was Ours | Anna-Marie McLemore
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"They would watch how Sam sometimes climbed trees to set his moons where the branches met and joined, but just as often threw a thin rope over a bough and pulled the moon up. They would notice how, when he had to climb trees to put in new candles or relight ones that had gone out, he did it without hurry. [...] They would realize how beautiful this odd boy was, how the moons he hung in the trees at night glowed like a bowl of stars."

AJBowers This is awesome 3y
6 likes1 stack add1 comment
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kimberly.burke
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Ugh, I feel ya, Jess Tran.

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kimberly.burke
The The Last of August | Brittany Cavallaro
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Just arrived in the mail today, and it seemed an appropriate pick for #homage, as the lead characters are descendants of Holmes and Watson (and may have a *slightly* similar dynamic). There are nearly endless homages to Sherlock Holmes stories in literature and other media—there must be some sort of magic in the crime-solving, mis-matched pair.

I really enjoyed the first book in this series, can't wait to read this one! #feistyfeb

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kimberly.burke
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Picked this up at the library today -- just 3 little crossover stories between Riordan's Greek and Egyptian series. Short, fun read for Riordan fans, and a great little #palatecleanser.

(Map from Percy Jackson's Greek Heroes, in keeping with the theme)

#feistyfeb

11 likes1 stack add
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kimberly.burke
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I listened to both Seraphina and Shadow Scale this year and then immediately implored @courtneybee to follow suit so we could discuss, because there were so many awesome elements.

I thought Hartman handled the #lovetriangle situation quite well. It's not the main focus of either book, but it's sweet and a little heartbreaking and unique, especially the conclusion. I'm not a big fan of love triangles, but I approve of this one.

#feistyfeb

7 likes1 stack add
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kimberly.burke
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one of my favorite plays -- Oscar Wilde's dialogue is absolutely hilarious.

#alltheworldsastage #feistyfeb

9 likes1 stack add
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kimberly.burke
The Color Purple | Alice Walker
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one of my #currentreads--or it was until I finished it today. I'm sure there's nothing I can say that hasn't already been said about this book, but I couldn't put it down. Tragedy, hardship, pain, abuse, friendship, family, love, heartache, hope, and faith are all tangled up together in one big complicated mess for Celie and Nettie in this classic novel.

(and yes, those are pants)

#riotgrams
#readharder (classic by an author of color)

9 likes1 stack add
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kimberly.burke
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from eggs to animals to homicidal gingerbread-men, there are a whole bunch of #anthropomorphiccharacters in Jasper Fforde's hardboiled Nursery Crime series.

slightly different style than Fforde's Thursday Next series, though his signature humor and wit is abundant throughout. I read this book in 8th grade and was immediately hooked on all Fforde's books forevermore.

(thanks for letting me borrow your book @courtneybee !)

#feistyfeb

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kimberly.burke
Sense & Sensibility | Jane Austen
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some #bookishgoods -- library card bag + a few book-related pins (including a little Jane Austen one) + some kiwiana pins for good measure.

#riotgrams

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kimberly.burke
Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur Vol. 1: BFF | Brandon Montclare, Amy Reeder
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You tell 'em, Lunella!

(Btw, absolutely loved this character -- Lunella/Moon Girl is the best, even in a slightly messy story)

3 likes1 stack add
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kimberly.burke
The Bad Beginning | Lemony Snicket
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I had a bit of a "bad beginning" (pardon the pun) with this series -- it was a read-aloud in school and I was rather disinclined to like it because it was so popular at the time. As an adult I saw Daniel Handler speak and realized I would probably enjoy his weird sense of humor--I was right. I've only read a few in this series, but they're cute and bizarre and I'm glad I tried again.

#feistyfeb #changedyourmindabout
(book from @courtneybee )

3 likes1 stack add
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kimberly.burke
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This is just a sample of some of the books/series I have reread over and over again. I used to reread books *constantly* until I challenged myself to start reading more new ones (for me, at least) a couple years ago.

I've probably read most of Tamora Pierce's Tortall books at least 4 times? Same for Harry Potter and Thursday Next.
#reread #feistyfeb

courtneybee our often reread piles are pretty similar -- I wonder how these books have mananged to survive in our house 3y
kimberly.burke @courtneybee some didn't -- I think Letters from Camp (wherever that is now), completely fell apart. 3y
6 likes2 comments
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kimberly.burke
Frindle | Andrew Clements
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"Who says dog means dog? You do, Nicholas. You and I and everyone in this class and this school and this town and this state and this country. [...] But if all of us in this room decided to call that creature something else, and if everyone else did, too, then that's what it would be called, and one day it would be written in the dictionary that way. We decide what goes in that book."

Mind-blowing for me as a kid.
#onewordtitle #riotgrams

EvieBee 😍 3y
7 likes1 stack add1 comment