It's Monday What are You Reading? Thank you to Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki at Unleashing Readers for hosting.
It is the middle of winter and so I unintentionally let my reading take me away to two islands this week. It turned out that the two books could make for an entire post in contrasts. I learned about Scar Island on social media and I quickly requested it from the library without much thought. When I looked at the cover and saw that the book was written by Dan Gemeinhart author of The Honest Truth and Some Kind of Courage, it quickly rose to the top of my TBR pile. While Scar Island is different from his first two books I couldn't put it down. I think middle grade readers will recognize the inner struggles that these characters face as the characters do their time, for varying degrees of crimes, in a very dark, damp and unhealthy and unstable atmosphere.
I was so thankful when I was handed an ARC of Orphan Island by Laurel Snyder. The contrast in settings was welcomed as I closed Scar Island and opened Orphan Island - an island that the characters describe as a place where nothing goes wrong. Again, even though these two books are completely different, Orphan Island too brings the reader to inner conflicts of the characters. The book has me thinking about parenting, teaching, childhood, struggles and unknowns as we grow up. I had some of the same feelings about the writing as when I read Bigger Than a Breadbox also by Laurel Snyder. She has such a gift for writing blend of fantasy with reality - for me the lines blur as I read and it didn't matter that there was some fantasy. The story is that good and I was totally taken into the life of the children on Orphan Island.
Well, it's back to winter - I'm off both islands and onto other titles on my TBR stack!