The Summer Reading Post

What are you reading this summer? Anything good?

First on my list is the third book in the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series, The Last Straw. I loved the first one, thought the second one was OK, and have high hopes for this one.

I might also try to reread all of Harry Potter. We’ll see about that one. That’s a lot of pages.

Have a great summer! Enjoy reading in the hammock under the apple tree (at least that’s what I’ll be doing)! See you next year!


May Book Post – Hatchet

We’ve read Hatchet before in Guys Read. To me, it’s the ultimate guy book. Not that girls wouldn’t like it. It’s just very…guy-ey. Still, it has such universal appeal that the Mother/Daughter Club is also reading it for May, and we’re combining into a big, TMC Book Club BBQ Reading Group Meeting Extravaganza!

We’ll meet on May 28, at 6 pm. Note the earlier start time.

I’m excited for this book. It’s a good one, no doubt about it. So much to talk about it. Plus, Mr. F. is a self-proclaimed Hatchet expert. So it will be good to quiz him a bit.

See you in a few weeks!

April Book Post – Crossing the Wire

Hey guys! Great meeting last week! Welcome Tyler!

Our next book is Crossing the Wire, by Will Hobbs. Mr. Hobbs is a Guys Read favorite; we read his book Ghost Canoe a few years ago. Wire is a very interesting read. I think you’ll find it making you think about things you’ve never thought about before.

There are requests to put the meeting date on the blog, so here you go: We will meet on Thursday, April 30, at the usual place, at the usual time.

This is our penultimate book, and it’s been a great time. We’ve had some rock solid attendees, and some newcomers that we’re glad to have. If you haven’t made a meeting yet, it’s not too late! Join us!

See you in a month!

March Book Post – The Book of Three

Hey guys! We transition as far across genres as possible for our next book; from nonfiction to high fantasy.

Mr. H., custodian extraordinaire, has been asking me to get a book from this series into Guys Read, so here we are! Our next book is The Book Of Three by Lloyd Alexander. It’s the first book of The Chronicles of Prydain.

I’ve read this book once, but I know some of the story from other ways. First, I remember having a Disney Read-a-long tape of The Black Cauldron. The movie was based on the first two books of the series. I don’t think I ever actually saw the movie, but I loved the Read-a-long book. My favorite character was Gurgi.

The other way I knew about this story was from a computer game. Basically, you walked around trying to find the Black Cauldron and save Hen Wen. It was kind of silly, but I bet if I had read the book back then, I would have beaten the game. I kept on dying at the castle. Sometimes the Horned King would get me, or the alligators, or I’d fall off a cliff or something.

Here’s an ultimate guy thing for you: Sometimes, I would walk the character behind a bush, press a command, and the bottom of the screen would say “You can’t do that here.” That always cracked my friends and me up.

February Book Post – Shipwreck at the Bottom of the World


A little late on the book post this month. Sorry about that.

Our February book is Shipwreck at the Bottom of the World, by Jennifer Armstrong. It is quite the extraordinary true story.

I’m looking forward to another great meeting! Keep reading!

December/January Book Post – The Invention of Hugo Cabret

Well, I’d have to say I’m more excited for this book than any other this year. How could I not be?

The Invention of Hugo Cabret (the book has its own website!) is written and illustrated by Brian Selznick. Last year it won the Caldecott Medal. Usually only picture books win that award. This is a novel! That’s crazy!

Mr. Selznick illustrated the cover of a previous GR book, The Janitor’s Boy.

There are not really any other books like this one. Mr. Selznick pushed the boundary of what we think a novel can be. I’m very interested to know what you think about it.

Another reason I’m so excited for this book is that the author is coming to Bellingham in March! It’s a little spendy for kids, but I’ll be going to the Children’s Literature Conference at Western Washington University, and Mr. Selznick is one of the featured authors! I can’t wait to hear what he has to say! I’ll report back to you, for sure.

Have fun reading!

Update: 1/24/09 – I’ve added a bunch of links to things. And the whole movie of A Trip to the Moon!

Here are links to clips movies mentioned in the book:

  • Safety Last, starring Harold Lloyd
  • The Arrival of the Train at La Ciotat, by the Lumiere brothers; one of the first movies ever made!
  • The Vanishing Lady, by Georges Méliès. This is on YouTube, so you can’t watch it at school. It is also not the best quality.
  • The Clock Store, a Disney “Silly Symphony” from 1931.
  • Paris Asleep, by René Clair. It is silent, and the caption cards are in French, but it’s interesting to look at.
  • The Million, also by René Clair. This is just a clip. This movie is the first French musical with singing parts. Sorry, no English subtitles. This one is also YouTube.

In addition to Georges Méliès, who is actually a character in the story, Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, and Jean Renoir were also mentioned in the book.

In his credits at the end, Mr. Selznick said you could find out more about Georges Méliès here.

He also said you could see a real automaton here. One of the videos there features Mr. Selznick himself.

November Book Post – Surviving the Applewhites

Well, I hope we can find a few guys who like reading and aren’t busy on Thursdays. Of course, we can always change the day, if that’s the main problem.

Since no one came to the last meeting, does this count as the second book or the first book? Hmm… Anyway, our November book is Surviving the Applewhites, by Stephanie S. Tolan. It’s a Newbery Honor book and like Spirit Bear, it has a troubled boy as it’s main character. He heals and changes in a different way, though.

It’s another good one, and I hope we get a bunch of guys this time to talk about it.

Keep reading!