It’s Monday, What are You Reading is a meme hosted by Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing Readers (new host of Monday reading: Kathryn T at Book Date). Since two of our friends, Linda from Teacher Dance and Tara from A Teaching Life have been joining this meme for quite awhile now, we thought of joining this warm and inviting community.
We have also decided to announce the Literary Voyagers who will be receiving the following titles for the Literary Voyage Around The World Reading Challenge by end of the year. For those who still like to join and link up, it’s never too late to do so.
Meanwhile, here is the linky for October-December. Do share your reviews of books from around the world.
Today, we are launching our new reading theme until end of the year: Breathing Beauty, Tasting Art, Feeling Music in Literature. Essentially, we are hunting down titles that will fit the following criteria:
- visual and performing arts as featured in books (dance, music, theatre, painting, sculpture, film-making, architecture – among others)
- lives of high creatives and portrayal of artists
- ruminations on beauty, creativity, arts
- creative process and product
To launch our reading theme, I have two books that feature themes that we hope to explore in greater depth in the coming months.
Written by: Chris Barton Illustrated by: Louis Thomas
Published by: Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2016
ISBN: 0553538152 (ISBN13: 9780553538151). Borrowed from the Jurong West Public Library. Book photos taken by me.
A young boy was brought by his parents to a music shop that has 88 instruments. However, he was advised to only select one instrument – within reason, of course.
The young boy proceeded to try out the various instruments to help him decide – and there were quite a number of them – from the grooviest, to the tiniest, to the breeziest and the slideyest:
As he tried out a variety of sounds, it was the random plink of the piano that caught his ear:
One could use this picturebook to demonstrate how a child begins to fall in love with an instrument: and it starts off with one clear plink. I also chuckled at the clever twist in the end. While I am not a huge fan of the art, I still thought that this was a good primer to young readers who love music.
Written and Illustrated by: Mordicai Gerstein
Published by: Little Brown and Company, 2013
ISBN: 0316204781 (ISBN13: 9780316204781). Literary Awards: Vermont’s Picture Book Awards: Red Clover Nominee (2015), Massachusetts Book Award for Children’s/Young Adult Literature (2014). Borrowed from the Jurong West Public Library. Book photos taken by me.
This book begins with a reference to some of the oldest drawings discovered in a cave in Southern France, more than 30,000 years ago. Along with the ancient drawings is the footprint of a child and that of a wolf.
Inspired by that image, the unparalleled Mordicai Gerstein proceeded to create a narrative of what it must have been like for this young boy to have shared his creative vision, at a time when nothing of the sort has been invented as yet:
I felt for the young boy, as everyone around him scorned, mocked, ridiculed his seeming wayward and overactive imagination – until he managed to truly make them see what is in his mind’s eye:
I especially enjoyed reading Gerstein’s Author’s Note found at the end of the book, detailing what drawing means to him and what it could mean to young people everywhere, from 30,000 years ago until the present time.
#LitWorld2018GB Update: United States of America