On My Bookshelf

The Good:
by Gary Jeffrey & Illustrated by Terry Riley
Graphic Mythology: African Myths. This is an awesome book! I read another of the same series, Chinese Myths by Rob Shone. They were both neat, but I really loved this one. It has the West African creation story (Yoruba people), the dog and jackal (from the Bushongo people of Zaire) and another about how Anansi became the keeper of stories (from the Ashanti of Ghana).  Probably the highlight of the creation story is the wisest of the gods’, Olorun’s trusted messenger. The trusted messenger is a chameleon. Don’t let this cold blooded, sllllllooooooowwwww moving creature fool you. He seems much wiser than the gods he serves.

Nellie Bly: Reporter for the World by Martha E. Kendall (Wonderfully written for kids, Bly did loads more amazing things in her life than I first realized)
Gossamer by Lois Lowry (dual story: abused child goes into foster care and dream crafting fairies visit the house where the boy is being cared for, dark yet hopeful)
Freya by Christopher E. Long (graphic novel, story of how Freya fell in love with the blind god named Od, sweet story and lovely art)
Calamity Jack by Dean Hale and Shannon Hale, Illustrated by Nathan Hale (AWESOME retelling of jack and the bean stalk takes place in a fairy tale world, must now read Rapunzel’s Revenge)

The Not-So Good AKA Just Skip It:

by Sue Townsend
Are you there, God? It’s me, Margaret by Judy Blume (wasn’t allowed to read this as a child because of hype, now disappointed. I recommend the Sue Townsend book The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole, age 13 3/4. My mom didn’t know about this author so I got to read it secretly and get some insight on male puberty)
Chiggers by Hope Larson (Graphic Novel, characters looked too similar and were horribly mean to their “friends”, art nice and the fantasy/sci-fi parts of the story were interesting)

Still reading:

By Gary Paulsen

Guts: True Stories behind Hatchet and the Brian Books by Gary Paulsen (Very well written for youth, I have decided this man is a little insane)
The Queen’s Man
by Sharon Kay Penman (4 chapters left, mystery, well researched historical fiction)
Over Sea, Under Stone by Susan Cooper (Barely 100 pages into it, story moves slowly, pushing on because of promises of greatness in the Dark is Rising series)
Guide to Story Telling by Arthur Burrell (dry and wordy, need less outdated source to perfect skills)
Secondhand Charm
by Julie Berry (Looked pretty so I snatched it up, not yet started)
Tangerine by Edward Bloor (Same as the Berry book)


What are you reading?
What should I read next?



  1. I took “Calamity Jane” home with me, and now you’ve got me intrigued by “Freya” and “African Myths” too.

    The art in Chiggers didn’t appeal to me either but I didn’t read it.

    Answer 1: I have just finished Sarah Allen’s The Girl Who Chased the Moon which was magical (it was fantasy and it was wonderful.)

    Answer 2: You should read “American Born Chinese” by Gene Luen Yang.

  2. I read Are you there, God? It’s me, Margaret when I was 11 I think and I thought it was TOO COOL back then. lol

    I love everything that has to do with myths and superstitions so I’m glad you recommended that first book!
    I’m trying to learn a little more of my own background by reading about some Inca and Quechua folk tales. I want to be able to retell those stories to Victoria when she asks me to tell her a bed time story =D

    • When I read the Adrian Mole books I would hide them in bedroom and feel completely scandalous while reading them. We’re so hip when we’re young :D

      Have you read much into Jan Brunvand at all? He’s like the end all be all of Folklore collections. That was who I read when I took my folklore classes. He can be a touch dry, but it is interesting to find out just how old all these stories we hear really are.

      Awesome culturally relevant bedtime stories. Love it!

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