It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #imwayr 7/16/18


On the blog:

In reading:

nature fix

I almost didn’t read The Nature Fix because the reviews made it sound like I already knew the gist: nature is good for us, and spending five hours outside in nature every month will cure much of what ails us. I’m totally on board with that, and I wondered, what else is there to say? An awful lot, it turns out. Williams travels the world interviewing scientists, government officials, psychologists, researchers, program guides, and others whose work gets people outside in nature and examines the ways that being in nature sharpens our senses, improves our physical health, lowers our stress levels, and restores our emotional equilibrium. She herself is a guinea pig in many experiments and reports firsthand on the physiological, mental, and emotional benefits of the “nature fixes” she is exposed to. I was especially struck by the chapter on kids and ADHD. One little-known piece of research from the Finland education success story: children in Finland get up to 15 minutes of recess every hour! No wonder they excel in school! The description of the outdoors academies that Williams visits makes me long for such opportunities for ALL children. The Nature Fix has something important to say to each of us. A must read.


My son and I just completed The Crossover as our read-aloud, and it’s really good read aloud. While I was glad it won the Newbery, it was a bit of a meh for me when I read it myself when it first came out, but read aloud, it really shines. The death at the end still doesn’t entirely work for me, but I do think Alexander does a reasonable job of bringing the book to some kind of closure after such a plot explosion.

i walk with vanessa

I Walk With Vanessa is, as the subtitle promises, “a story about a simple act of kindness.” One little girl notices her classmate, Vanessa, getting bullied on the way home from school. She resolves the next morning to walk with Vanessa, and many other children join in. Entirely wordless and surprisingly powerful.

brilliant deep

Kate Messner’s The Brilliant Deep is a fascinating story about coral reefs and how one individual has made a difference in rebuilding them. I found the artwork very appealing, and I learned quite a bit about coral reefs too.

21 responses to “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #imwayr 7/16/18”

  1. I’m totally intrigued by The Nature Fix — adding that to my TBR list. I want to “read” I Walk with Vanessa with my littles soon. Sounds beautiful! Glad to have you back home, safe and sound. I haven’t answered my blog comments yet, so I’ll quickly tell you that I got both Adventures of a Girl Called Bicycle and The Mad Wolf’s Daughter on the Overdrive e-library (which you’ll at least have access to through CPL) and I ILL’ed Zora and Me from WSC. ❤

    • Ok, I clearly have to get my Overdrive account linked to the CPL too. Totally different books available than Rapid! The Nature Fix is really fascinating. She shares so many different psychological and scientific studies, and I really enjoyed learning more about the research.

  2. I am ordering. The Brilliant Deep and Vanessa’s Walk sound perfect additions for this upcoming year. Two areas I’m diving into are work around sustainability and the work of every year, empathy. The Nature Fix sounds like great addition to my to read as well. Have you read Vitamin N?

    • I have not read Vitamin N yet, but it’s on my list now. I’d like to read his other book about nature deficit disorder too. Brilliant Deep would be a great one for sustainability work, especially as it focuses on observations one individual made and then developed into a replanting project. I think it’s always helpful for kids to hear the message that one person really can make a difference.

  3. I feel like you that I will know all the stuff in The Nature Fix, but it sounds like Williams goes deeply into the why and how of it and puts it all into a larger perspective. I’ve put it on hold. I’m waiting for my I Walk With Vanessa to come in to my library. I’ve just requested they get The Brilliant Deep.

  4. Yes, Crossover is excellent out loud. That’s how I usually sell it because I read some of it aloud and then I have a list of people waiting for it. I liked the Brilliant Deep too. I want to get The Nature Fix. It sounds very interesting. I’ve been trying to incorporate more outdoor activities in my library lessons.

  5. I am currently reading Richard Powers’ The Overstory for one of my online book club – I think it would be a good book to pair with your Nature title. I loved I Walk with Vanessa, too and will be doing a full review of it in the coming weeks for #DiverseKidLit. 🙂

  6. I have The Brilliant Deep to read in my pile too!
    I’m hoping to start Rebound this week. I’ve heard some great things about it.

  7. My wife and I were reading Rebound to each other on the way home from the bookstore. Sadly, she had bought it as a gift for her departing principal and we did not finish it. We need our own copy. It takes me a while to find the right rhythm to read it but it is so much better out loud.
    I am really looking forward to getting The Brilliant Deep as Kate Messner’s other PBs have been really popular. Thanks for sharing.

    • I’m sorry you didn’t get to finish! There’s a treat at the end for readers of The Crossover–an epilogue that catches us up on what’s happening with the twins! I agree with you: so much better read out loud. I’ve been trying to think of some more verse novels to try with my son, as he really liked that format as a read-aloud. Any suggestions? I think The Brilliant Deep is my favorite Messner PB so far. I think it will inspire a lot of curiosity and wonder for my students.

      • I always say House Arrest and Knockout for verse novel suggestions. Not sure how I missed your comment for four days, but… summer… travelling…. you know.

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