Monday, February 22, 2016

First Grade Dropout

I gave K-1 a sneak peek of one of the great 2x2 books we have to look forward to next year.  They could all relate to the main character, because they have also been embarrassed in school at one time or another.  They weren't disappointed in First Grade Dropout, and we look forward to learning about the other nineteen 2x2 books for the 2016-17 school year.

The first grade narrator of this book has been lots of things: Hungry. Four years old. Crazy bored. Soaking wet. Pretty regular kid . . . until he makes a mistake so big that he’s sure he will never be able to go back to Lakeview Elementary School. All readers, even those not in first grade, will find the narrator’s feelings familiar, and discover that even though embarrassing things happen, they’re usually not as bad as they seem. And sometimes they’re even funny!  (summary taken from

Monday, February 1, 2016

Dear Hank Williams

It's 1948 in Rippling Creek, Louisiana, and Tate P. Ellerbee's new teacher has just given her class an assignment--learning the art of letter-writing. Luckily, Tate has the perfect pen pal in mind: Hank Williams, a country music singer whose star has just begun to rise. Tate and her great-aunt and -uncle listen to him on the radio every Saturday night, and Tate just knows that she and Hank are kindred spirits.

Told entirely through Tate's hopeful letters, this beautifully drawn novel from National Book Award-winning author Kimberly Willis Holt gradually unfolds a story of family love, overcoming tragedy, and an insightful girl learning to find her voice.  F HOL  (review taken from