Welcome

This is the blog of children's book author and third grade teacher, Stacy Barnett Mozer. I blog about my own writing journey, the journey of other kidlit authors, my classroom, and talk about books. Thanks for stopping by. Your thoughts are always welcome (and encouraged).

Monday, November 26, 2018

#IMWAYR November 26, 2018


Each week I try to join Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee from Unleashing Readers to share all of the reading I've done over the week from picture books to young adult novels. Unfortunately so far this year keeping up with my reading has been challenging. I had a change in position at school that has taken up a lot of my time. Fortunately Thanksgiving weekend gave me a chance to catch up on some great books.

Here's what I read this week:

Middle Grade


If you loved Dusti Bowling's Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus, you will love 24 Hours in Nowhere. Gus wants to get out of the backwards town of Nowhere and to go pretty much anywhere else. In Nowhere he is bullied for being short and wimpy and he thinks no one appreciates his quick wit or his always growing vocabulary. But when he is forced to go into an abandoned mine to find a treasure and get a bike back for the girl he likes, he finds out that Nowhere may not be as lonely as he thought. I love Dusti Bowling's characters and the way she reveals their inner strength. 


Young Adult (Mature Audiences)



In Kingdom of Ash, Sarah J. Maas did such an incredible job wrapping up her Throne of Glass series, as soon as I finished it I had to go back and read the whole series from the beginning. The whole thing is brilliant. My only disappointment is that it is now over. But at least I can still go back and read them again.


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Stacy Barnett Mozer is a teacher and a middle grade author. If you like what she's been reading follow her on Goodreads. Please leave a comment below. 

It's Monday, what are you reading?

Sunday, October 28, 2018

My Thoughts on Pittsburgh

Some of you know the book I am working on is a contemporary story about a girl who faces anti-semitism in elementary school and middle school. I woke up this morning and realized I need to make changes because after the event in Pittsburgh yesterday, my main character’s reactions have changed. 

Yesterday when bullies used words to make fun of her, she was upset, but could live with it, 
Today she is scared they will use more than words.

Yesterday they threw money at her and she thought that was annoying and stupid.
Today she’s scared they won’t stop at throwing money.

Yesterday they painted swastikas on the side of buildings and she saw that as a personal attack.
Today she understands they aren’t just attacking her, they‘re targeting all Jews.

Yesterday when they sent her a text showing her family in a gas chamber, she destroyed her phone.
Today she’s afraid they will try to set fire to her house.

Yesterday her synagogue was her one safe place. She went there every Saturday.
Today she fears that someone will come to her synagogue with a gun.

Yesterday she walked inside her synagogue with the backpack she used for her sleepover.
Today that bag will probably be checked or she won’t be able to bring it at all.

Yesterday as these things were happening to her, she kept silent, afraid telling people would only make things worse.
Today she will still stay silent, because she is not sure that anything will change and she’s scared things will get worse. But she also hopes and prays that something will happen soon to make her feel differently.

Yesterday I hoped I would get a new agent who would find an editor who wanted to publish my story.

Today, I hope that agents and editors will find more stories like this to publish, because we need these stories and right now kids can only find anti-semitism in Holocaust books - 
and on the news.  


Monday, October 15, 2018

#IMWAYR October 15, 2018


Each week I try to join Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee from Unleashing Readers to share all of the reading I've done over the week from picture books to young adult novels. 

Here's what I read this week:

Middle Grade


Louisiana's grandmother has taught her to be a problem solver. What ever she wants, she knows how to talk her way into getting it. But when Louisiana's grandmother forces her to get in the car in the middle of the night, leaving her friends (introduced in the companion novel Raymie Nightingale), her dog, and her cat, the one person she cannot convince of anything is her grandmother. And when her grandmother leaves her alone in a hotel, with only a note to explain what has happened, Louisiana's problem solving skills will be tested. A heartfelt story which I found even more enjoyable than the first in the series.


Young Adult (Mature Audiences)


The Half Bad trilogy follows Nathan, a half black and half white witch who faces stereotyping and prejudice as he grows up and tries to find his own way in the witch world. The series is full of themes of racism and prejudice and would be a good conversation starter with teens. It could be a companion to the movie, The Wave


Every time I go back into the Throne of Glass universe, I want more. After reading this book about Chao's experience, I had to reread Empire of Storms to see where it fit into the time line. I cannot wait until Kingdom of Ash releases on the 23rd. I may have to start at book one and read them all again to prepare!


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Stacy Barnett Mozer is a teacher and a middle grade author. If you like what she's been reading follow her on Goodreads. Please leave a comment below. 

It's Monday, what are you reading?

Monday, September 24, 2018

#IMWAYR September 24, 2018


Each week I try to join Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee from Unleashing Readers to share all of the reading I've done over the week from picture books to young adult novels. 

Here's what I read this week:

Middle Grade


We were very excited to welcome Trudi Trueit and explorer Zolton Zakacs to my school on Friday to share their new book, Explorer Academy: The Nebula Secret. Our students sat on edge to listen to Trudi talk about the book and Zolton talk about his life as an explorer. When Cruz is accepted to The Explorer Academy in Washington D.C., all he wants is to prove he deserves to be there and hasn't been chosen because his mother had been killed in an accident in the school's lab and his aunt is a professor. But right away he learns that his mother's accident may not have been an accident at all and the people that killed her may be after him too. The book is Spy Kids meets science geek. 



Growing up there were three other Stacy's in my class, but at least we all spelled our name differently. When Naomi and Naomi are introduced by their dating parents, having the same exact name with the same exact spelling is not a happy coincidence. Both Naomi want their lives to stay the same, having their single parent to themselves, but their parents are determined to force them to get to know each other, even if it means changing everything. Told from the two Naomi's points of view, this book is about dealing with change as your family move forward after divorce. I really loved how the authors let the reader root for both girls, even during the conflicts between them. 


If you read Inside Out and Back Again, you should read All The Broken Pieces. Matt Pin's living in America with his new American family. He wants to forget the war torn Vietnam he escaped from and the mother and brother he left behind because the memories and guilt are too painful. But when he realizes he is not the only one dealing with the consequences of the Vietnam war, he finds a way to help himself while helping others. A powerful novel in verse.


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Stacy Barnett Mozer is a teacher and a middle grade author. If you like what she's been reading follow her on Goodreads. Please leave a comment below. 

It's Monday, what are you reading?

Monday, September 17, 2018

#IMWAYR September 17, 2018


Each week I try to join Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee from Unleashing Readers to share all of the reading I've done over the week from picture books to young adult novels. 

Here's what I read this week:

Middle Grade


Fantasy meets science fiction in this series by James Riley. Owen wants life to be more exciting so when he notices his classmate Bethany reach into a copy of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and pull out some chocolate, he thinks he finally found a way to make things more interesting. He convinces Bethany to take him into his favorite series, a Harry Potter meets the Matrix world of action and adventure. But when the characters escape, things get much more interesting than Owen anticipated. Told from multiple points of view, HP fans and book lovers will enjoy this one.


Young Adult (Mature Audiences)


Have you ever wanted to live a different life? When Donetella manipulated her sister Scarlett to enter the game of Caraval to escape their abusive father and a forced marriage, she knew she was doing the right thing. After all, Caraval is a world of make-believe and everything that happened to Scarlett was a game. But now, in this second book the first game is over and it's Donetella's turn to play. But this time the stakes are higher and death in this game may be real. Fans of the first Caraval will find that there are many more layers to the game than first suspected. I can't wait for book three.


The stakes are not as high in the fourth book of Sarah J. Maas's Court of Thorn and Roses series, but you get to know more about the characters from the previous books. Told in multiple points of view, this book satisfies those missing Ferye, Ryland, and their court. I'm looking forward to seeing what will happen to them next.


 This book is the satisfying conclusion to the Unwind series. I can't say much more without giving things away.
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Stacy Barnett Mozer is a teacher and a middle grade author. If you like what she's been reading follow her on Goodreads. Please leave a comment below. 

It's Monday, what are you reading?

Monday, September 3, 2018

#IMWAYR September 3, 2018


Each week I try to join Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee from Unleashing Readers to share all of the reading I've done over the week from picture books to young adult novels. 

Last week was my first week back at school, thought most of the time was spent in staff development and with classroom setup. My students asked for a fantasy themed room this year so, with some help from Pinterest, here's what I came up with:






Tomorrow I get to share the room with my students. I can't wait for them to see it!

Here' what I read this week:

Picture Book

A beautiful book that tells the amazing story of how Malala learning to use her pencil and her voice to change the world.


I love this book about the importance of dreaming big.

Middle Grade


Emmie feels invisible at school. Katie is the popular kid. On this one particular day at school their lives will touch and readers will be surprised how it ends. Graphic novel.


Penelope is easily embarrassed so when she falls down and is helped up by a school nerd, she is quick to push him away instead of being teased. But the moment haunts her and motivates her to find a way to seek common ground when her art club and the boy's science club go to war. Graphic Novel with incredible end pages that explain how the author wrote and illustrated the book. Can't wait to use this to start a graphic novel writing unit this year.

Young Adult


In the future The Big Water has destroyed most of the world, but those living on the Navajo reservation survived. Now called the Dinetah, they survive in the new world among reborn gods and monsters. Maggie is a monster hunter, her clan powers woken when she is almost killed by a monster as a child. Convinced her power is also making her evil, she hunts alone until a medicine boy named Kai changes what she knows about herself and her world.


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Stacy Barnett Mozer is a teacher and a middle grade author. If you like what she's been reading follow her on Goodreads. Please leave a comment below. 

It's Monday, what are you reading?

Monday, August 27, 2018

#IMWAYR #30BookSummer August 27, 2018


Each week I try to join Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee from Unleashing Readers to share all of the reading I've done over the week from picture books to young adult novels. In addition to discussing books on Monday, I'll also be counting them! Check out #30booksummer on twitter to see what others are reading for this challenge. Today is the first day back at school so summer is officially over. I didn't quite make 30, but 26 isn't too bad.

Book # 22 Middle Grade Historical


Katy Gordan loves playing baseball. When a man scouts her at a local field and asks her to try out for Little League, she is so excited, especially when she makes the team! That excitement is squashed however when she finds out she cannot play because she's a girl. Fueled by her need to prove the Little League wrong and a famous person assignment in school, Katy becomes an expert in women's baseball and proves to everyone that saying that women have never played professional baseball is untrue. Kids will love Katy's journey. Teachers will love the books emphasis on research.

Book # 23 Young Adult (Mature Audiences)


Since their parents got married, Suzette and her step brother, Lionel had been very close.  Then Lionel had a breakdown due to a bi-polar disorder and Suzette was sent across the country to boarding school. When Suzette comes back she find Lionel changed, their relationship changed, and she has changed as well, realizing at boarding school that she may love girls as much as boys. Even with all the changes, Suzette wants to reconnect with her brother even if that means keeping a secret that may do him more harm than good.  

Book # 24 Nonfiction Picture Book


Many people know about the fight for desegregation for blacks. This book tells the story of Sylvia Mendez and the fight for desegregation for Mexicans in American schools. 


Book # 25 Picture Book


Last time I wrote about Echo Echo, which explored Greek Myths from the point of view of the most important characters by writing a comparison poem in each character's point of view. Mirror Mirror creates these reverse poems with fairy tale characters.

Book # 26 Young Adult Fantasy


Fans of Buffy the Vampire Slayer will love this book about a faerie slayer who lives in the 1800s.
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Stacy Barnett Mozer is a teacher and a middle grade author. If you like what she's been reading follow her on Goodreads. Please leave a comment below. 

It's Monday, what are you reading?

Monday, August 13, 2018

#IMWAYR #30BookSummer August 13, 2018


Each week I try to join Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee from Unleashing Readers to share all of the reading I've done over the week from picture books to young adult novels. In addition to discussing books on Monday, I'll also be counting them! Check out #30booksummer on twitter to see what others are reading for this challenge. Hopefully I can finish all 30 before school starts on August 28.

Book # 16 Picture Book


What could be better than a taco party for dragons? Just don't give them any jalapenos. Lots of fun.

Book # 17 Upper Middle Grade/Young Adult Historical


Thirteen year old Dicey knows something is wrong with her mother. So when she leaves her and her siblings in a car on the way to Bridgeport, CT, it doesn't take long for her to realize they are on their own. That doesn't stop Dicey or her siblings. Motivated by the fear of being separated, the three kids learn how to do odd jobs, catch fish, and do whatever it takes to find their way to a new home. Homecoming is the prequel to Dicey's Song, which I haven't read but will read now.

Book # 18 Young Adult Fantasy



Book 3 of the An Ember in the Ashes series continued to raise the stakes for each of the main characters. Helene, Laia, and Elias must sacrifice everything in order to save the people who are important - the only problem is the more they learn, the less they know how to tell friends from enemies and the more they must sacrifice. If you haven't found this series yet, find it. I wish the next book were coming out tomorrow.

Book # 19 Picture Book


Echo Echo explores Greek Myths from the point of view of the most important characters by writing a comparison poem in each character's point of view. This book will definitely be added to my Greek Myth unit.

Book # 20 Picture Book



I loved this adorable picture book about figuring out your place in the world and the power of friendship.

Book # 21 Picture Book



A beautiful book about the power of imagination. This will probably be the first read aloud of the new school year.

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Stacy Barnett Mozer is a teacher and a middle grade author. If you like what she's been reading follow her on Goodreads. Please leave a comment below. 

It's Monday, what are you reading?

Monday, July 30, 2018

#IMWAYR #30BookSummer July 30, 2018


Each week I try to join Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee from Unleashing Readers to share all of the reading I've done over the week from picture books to young adult novels. In addition to discussing books on Monday, I'll also be counting them! Check out #30booksummer on twitter to see what others are reading for this challenge.

Book # 13 Young Adult (Mature Audiences)


In this world some people are born "graced." From the time she was little, Kasta has believed she was born with a killing grace, which is put to use by her uncle the King. Kasta finds small ways to fight back against her fate to be her uncle's thug, but when she meets Po, a prince from a different land, he forces her to see everything she does differently, including her grace. Together Po and Kasta must face a bigger threat than her uncle, a king graced with the ability to make people believe his lies. Kasta is one of my favorite characters. This is my third read of this book and I enjoyed it again.

Book # 14 Middle Grade Fantasy


This is a very cute story about a dragon named Miss Drake and a human child named Winnie. When Winnie's aunt died she left her and her mother a house and a dragon. Armed with keys to the dragon's basement lair, Winnie finds Miss Drake morning her aunt and her pesky and curious nature forces Miss Drake out of her melancholy and back into the world. The story is told from Miss Drake's point of view.

Book # 15 Middle Grade Fantasy


I enjoyed A Dragon's Guide to the Care and Feeding of Humans. I adored - loved - must get a copy of A Dragon's Guide to Making Your Human Smarter. Told from both Winnie and Miss Drake's points of view, Winnie starts school and makes friends and enemies under the watchful eye of Miss Drake. But that doesn't stop Winnie from getting into trouble. 




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Stacy Barnett Mozer is a teacher and a middle grade author. If you like what she's been reading follow her on Goodreads. Please leave a comment below. 

It's Monday, what are you reading?

Monday, July 23, 2018

#IMWAYR #30BookSummer July 23, 2018


Each week I try to join Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee from Unleashing Readers to share all of the reading I've done over the week from picture books to young adult novels. In addition to discussing books on Monday, I'll also be counting them! Check out #30booksummer on twitter to see what others are reading for this challenge.

Book # 8 Picture Book


I adore this book about a grandfather and grandson finding common ground through art. No spoilers, but make sure to take the jacket off the book after you finish reading it. I can't wait to share this one with my students.

Book # 9 Middle Grade Fiction


When Amal has to stay home from school to help her mother with her new baby, she thinks it's the worst thing that could happen to her - until she accidentally insults the big man in town and is forced to become an indentured servant. Set in Pakistan, this story takes on issues of forced servitude and the rights of women. It's no wonder it is a Global Read Aloud book of 2018. 

Book # 10 Middle Grade Historical Fiction


I was thrilled to get an advanced reader copy of this book at the Scholastic #ReadingSummit last week because I've heard so much about it and love Jennifer A. Nielsen. It didn't disappoint. When Chaya's family is forced to move into a ghetto in Poland, she quickly decides she can't wait around to be killed or taken away like her younger brother and sister. Instead she joins the resistance, risking her life to help Jewish people in ghettos all over Poland. Based on true acts of resistance and heroism during the Nazi occupation. Resistance releases on August 28.

Book # 11 Middle Grade Fiction


This book has been on my TBR list for a long time. GiGi has a recipe for everything left to her in a cookbook from her mom. When she and her sister DiDi move to a new town and GiGi starts to make friends (and enemies) she starts to question what she knows about her mom, which leads her on a path of family and self-discovery. A wonderful coming of age novel.

Book # 12 Young Adult Fantasy/Science Fiction


I'm a big fan of dragons, so I was surprised to have missed this series. Trinity thinks her biggest problem is making sure her grandfather doesn't spend all their money, especially when he pays for a dragon's egg. Dragons are creatures of myth, or so Trinity thinks until she is visited by two twins from the future. One is there to kill her before she releases dragons into the world. The other to help dragons save it. But neither boy knows the truth about the past, Trinity, and what they've been told. They will both risk it all for the girl and her dragon.




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Stacy Barnett Mozer is a teacher and a middle grade author. If you like what she's been reading follow her on Goodreads. Please leave a comment below. 

It's Monday, what are you reading?

Monday, July 16, 2018

#IMWAYR #30BookSummer July 16, 2018


Each week I try to join Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee from Unleashing Readers to share all of the reading I've done over the week from picture books to young adult novels. Believe it or not, today starts my first official day of summer so in addition to discussing books on Monday, I'll also be counting them! Check out #30booksummer on twitter to see what others are reading for this challenge.

Book # 6 Middle Grade Novel in Verse


I started this book when my daughter brought it home for a class assignment this year and forgot to go back to it after she snatched it away. Fortunately it has come up on a few blogs in the past two weeks so I was reminded to go back to it. House Arrest is the story of Timothy, a boy who is on house arrest for stealing a wallet. But what you find out within the first few entries of his court appointed journal, Timothy didn't steal money for fun or to buy himself something special. He needed the money for medicine for his baby brother. A beautiful novel in verse. 

Book # 7 Middle Grade Realistic Fiction


Tristan loves living in NYC so when his parents announce they bought a house in the middle of the woods near a tiny little town to "do something different," he is less than thrilled. Since he can't start school until January, Tristian's parents decide to have him choose an independent project. Inspired by the mystery behind a sign in the General Store window that reads, "Yes, we do have chocolate cream doughnuts," even though the store sells none, Tristian has no idea that choosing doughnuts as his project will teach him so much more than starting a business. He'll also learn about friendship, fitting in, and self-worth.  I really enjoyed this novel. I'm not a baker, but I may have to try to make one of the recipes that came from this book.  

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Stacy Barnett Mozer is a teacher and a middle grade author. If you like what she's been reading follow her on Goodreads. Please leave a comment below. 

It's Monday, what are you reading?