Teachers for Teachers | It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?
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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

IMWAYRVoting for the Nerdy Book Club Awards began yesterday and ends on December 21st.   There are so many terrific titles on the finalist list that choosing our favorite is going to be tough.   Here are two more titles that we absolutely love.



Rump – The True Story of Rumpelstiltskin by Liesl Shurtliff

We could tell that this fractured-fairy tale was going to be hysterical just from the first sentence, “My mother named me after a cow’s read end.”   This book isn’t just funny; it is really clever.  Liesl Shurtliff has written the backstory to the traditional Rumpelstiltskin fairy tale.   Through this imaginative story we learn how Rumplestiltskin got his name, how he learned to turn straw into gold, and why he took the queen’s first-born child.

In this story, a young boy named Rump finds himself in a bit of a predicament.   The only way he can get enough food to feed himself and his grandmother is to find gold.   When Rump finds an old spinning wheel he realizes that he has a magical talent and can spin straw into gold.   Although Rump’s best friend Red warns him, “All magic has consequences, Rump.  Even small magic can have consequences.” (p.34).   Rump doesn’t listen.  He spins the straw into gold and becomes trapped by the magic. In order to free himself, Rump goes on a quest to find a “stiltskin” – a very rare mysterious magic.    Along the way he meets trolls, pixies, a foolish queen and the Wool Witches.  All of these encounters teach Rump valuable lessons about believing in yourself and the importance of friendship.

Rump is such a memorable character.  We laughed with him, got angry when at his foolish decisions, and cheered as he triumphed in the end.  Unlike the original tale, Rump (or Rumplestiltskin) is a true hero.

The book trailer for Rump is hysterical – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mpqaOP3UdQ8


BlueBird by Bob Staake

Wow!  Bluebird is one of those books that when you finish reading you immediately start again.   This wordless picture book by Bob Staake has a deep message about the power of friendship.  It is about a lonely boy who befriends a bluebird.  The bird follows him everywhere and keeps him company as other children tease and taunt him.  When a group of bullies attacks the boy, Bluebird stands up for his friend.

Readers are going to have lots of questions about the ending of this story.   Did Bluebird die or was he injured?   Why is the boy flying in the clouds?    Where did Bluebird go?   Bob Staake’s intentionally vague ending will have readers thinking and pondering for quite awhile.

Check out this book trailer – We love the way the music enhances this story.


  • Linda Baie
    Posted at 16:31h, 16 December Reply

    Still haven’t read Rump & you make it sound delightful! Love Bluebird-beautiful book. Happy Holidays!

    • Tammy and Clare
      Posted at 01:39h, 17 December Reply

      Happy Holidays to you too! Rump would be a great book to read when you have some free time.

  • Megan
    Posted at 17:30h, 16 December Reply

    Loved Rump! Have you read The Heroes Guide to Saving Your Kingdom/Storming the Castle? I love that middle grade series so much. Have a great reading week! ~Megan

  • Mary Hill
    Posted at 16:41h, 17 December Reply

    Hi, so little time; too many good books. I did not know about the Nerd book reading challenging. I need to get on a mailing list so I can participate in the next one. Could you email me the website for this? Are they having another one coming up? Glad I ran into your page. You seemed to be involved in some great reading challenges.


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