Book Blogger Appreciation Week

Book blogger (1)

Back in the fall of 2008, a wonderful book blogger named Amy (from My Friend Amy) created an online festival for book bloggers called Book Blogger Appreciation Week. Her intent was simple:

Acknowledging the hard work of book bloggers and their growing impact on book marketing and their essential contribution to book buzz in general, I am excited to announce the first Book Blogger Appreciation Week. Think of it as a retreat for book bloggers and a chance for us to totally nerd out over books together. And of course, shower each other with love and appreciation.

The event grew every year and, even though it was fun and Amy loved it, she had to end it in 2012 due to the work and time involved. BBAW has been missed dearly ever since.

That’s why we (Ana, Jenny, Heather, and Andi) are more than thrilled that Amy agreed to turn her baby over to us. We can only hope we do her proud.

So, yes, we are bring back Book Blogger Appreciation Week, with Amy’s blessing. Sign ups go live next week and the event starts February 15, perfectly coinciding with Valentine’s Day. Some things will change, some will stay the same, but we hope to keep Amy’s intent alive: celebrate the hard work, dedication, and love we all put into this adventure we call book blogging.

Help us spread the word with the graphic up top and the #BBAW hashtag!

100 Chapter Books Project: The BFG

It was pretty much a given that Roald Dahl would be on the Top 100 Chapter Books list. And one of the books that almost every kid has read or has read to them is The BFG (1982).

What it’s about: Sophie is staring out her dormitory window one night when she notices something moving in the shadows. That something grabs her out of that window and takes her away to another land — the land of the giants, of which he is the smallest and, luckily, the friendliest.

Age level: Grades 3-5

Best part: I love that Sophie finds a friend in the most unlikely place.

Worst part: The only bad part is where The BFG says there are “girl dreams” and “boy dreams”.

Verdict: Buy

This was a really fun reread for me. I actually kind of like it better each time I read it. This time I noticed that the first chapter or so sounded like it could have been written by Neil Gaiman. I listened to it on audiobook and David Walliams did a great job with it. He made The BFG sound kind of like Hagrid and the other giant voices were hilarious. There are also sound effects in the story which will please any fart-loving ten year old. As far as Roald Dahl stories go, this is definitely one of the best!

My next read is another one that I have never heard of — The Twenty-One Balloons. It looks interesting though and it was actually ranked above The BFG so I hope it’s great!

Schedule – November through January
November 30 – #64 The Twenty-One Balloons by William Pene du Bois (1947)
December 15 – #3 Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling (1997)
December 31 – Winter Break
January 15 – #26 Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne (1926)
January 31 – #63 The Great Gilly Hopkins by Katherine Paterson (1978)
February 15 – #92 Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen (2001)

100 Chapter Books Project: The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle


The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle (1990) by Avi is his only book on the Top 100 Chapter Books list, which is kind of surprising since he has written something like sixty books. In fact, Z’s sixth grade teacher loves Avi’s books and has the kids do an entire unit on Avi during the year.

What it’s about: Charlotte Doyle is supposed to follow her parents home to Rhode Island from England at the end of her school term. She is supposed to be accompanied by two families. She is supposed to have a peaceful journey on the ship, under the watch of the gentleman captain. What really happens all comes down to the previous voyage of the Seahawk, the arrogance of so-called “gentlemen”, and the mutinous crew. Charlotte’s voyage ends up being anything but peaceful.

Age level: Grades 4-6

Best part: There were real moments of terror on this voyage. Avi did not shy away from putting a thirteen-year-old girl in extreme peril. It was definitely an adventure!

Worst part: Charlotte is horrid at the start of the book. And then, when she’s not horrid any more, everyone else around her is.

Verdict: Borrow

There were things I liked about this book and things that I didn’t. Lots of readers swear by it but I’m still not entirely sold on the fact that Charlotte had to be that naive and such a horrid tattletale. However, I would definitely read another Avi book (as I just might be doing when Z’s project starts!).

Next up is All-of-a-Kind Family by Sydney Taylor — which I know absolutely nothing about.

Schedule – September through December
September 30 – #55 All-of-a-Kind Family by Sydney Taylor (1951)
October 15 – #23 Hatchet by Gary Paulsen (1989)
October 31 – #36 The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare (1958)
November 15 – #88 The BFG by Roald Dahl (1982)
November 30 – #64 The Twenty-One Balloons by William Pene du Bois (1947)
December 15 – #13 The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner (1997)
December 31 – Winter Break