Books in the Middle: Reading for Middle School

Our focus is on books middle school students might like to read and topics pertaining to books for these students, and we are giving recommendations. Teachers, librarians and middle school students are the contributors to this blog. If you would like to listen to booktalks of some of these books, please check out this site http://www.buzzsprout.com/229361 and enjoy!

No One is Perfect November 4, 2014

What makes someone successful? Is it what they do right? Or what they actually do wrong? How They Choked by Georgia Bragg looks at 15 people in history we often think of in terms of their successes. But what about their failures? Maybe those failures weren’t very public and maybe, as in the case of Amelia Earhart, they were.

What is great about this book, is the irreverent way Bragg approaches each of her subjects. As she says at the beginning of herimgres book, no one is perfect, and the sooner we all learn that, that happier we will be.

The chapter on Thomas Edison showed how someone could be success during their life, but a not nice person to those around them, or as in the case of Vincent Van Gogh – no one liked him. Not his family, or people around him. Ever. He had to pay people to pretend to be his family and it got to the point where people wouldn’t even pose for him because they disliked being around him so much.

Recommended for grades 6th and up for anyone who wants to be surprised, shocked and down right disgusted at times.

 

Don’t Read All At Once November 29, 2012

So I started reading this book on a road trip with my family. At first I was sharing bits and pieces with my husband, but as the hours and pages rolled by, he asked, no BEGGED me to stop. Frankly, it became a bit depressing! Now, don’t get me wrong, this is a fabulous, informative, funny (parts are laugh out loud funny), engaging book that is hard to stop reading…until you get a queasy feeling. So, seriously, you read this book and you’ll never wish to go back in time again, if you ever did! Or at least go back into a time where there were no antibiotics, dentists with novocaine or how about doctors who washed their hands! This book looks at nineteen deaths of famous folks from Edgar Allan Poe to Cleopatra to James Garfield and really more gory details about their ends then you probably ever wanted to know. How They Croaked: The Awful Ends of the Awfully Famous by Georgia Bragg is one book you won’t ever forget reading, but take my advice. Spread it out over a few days, unless you are good at handling lots of gore, guts and and gagging, or and don’t forget bodily fluids.

Recommended for mature (for the gross out factor and sarcastic writing style) 6th graders and up.