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 11, 2019

#IMWAYR November 11, 2019


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. I am currently a first round Cybil judge for the middle grade fiction, so expect to see a lot of middle grade fiction for the next few weeks. A lot of middle grade fiction.

Here's what I read this week:

Middle Grade


When Maggie's grandmother lost her memory due to dementia, she started to question whether our brains are enough to hold on to the things that are important to us. Instead, she found items to hold on to- things that would hold meaning for her. But as her collecting and saving starts bringing on feelings of resentment and anger whenever the slightest item is moved or touched, her parents realize that Maggie needs some help with holding on and letting go.


When Aven moved to a new city, not only did she have to start over in making new friends, she also needed to go back to proving to her new classmates that she was capable even though she was born without arms. Once she found a few good friends with their own challenges, everything became easier. But now Aven is starting high school with a whole new set of problems that goes along with it. A wonderful sequel to an amazing book. It may be appreciated more by an older middle grade reader because so much of the book revolves around dating.


When Carolina and her family have to leave Puerto Rico to move in with her aunt, uncle, and cousin Gabriella, Carolina isn't sure that living in Upstate New York is right for her. Her mother wants her to abandon her Spanish language and her love of painting to "fit in" with her cousins popular friends, but Carolina is more comfortable with Jenn, the social outcast who is into fairies and whose father is an artist. When Carolina finds a cabin abandoned in the woods, it's Jenn who is as excited as Carolina about fixing it up. But when the camp they are attending is threatened to close, holding on to the past becomes important to everyone.


Grace is a collector and when she visits her grandfather's new building over the summer she finds boxes and boxes of buttons. All she wants is to tell her best friend Ellie about them, but Ellie is a spotlight taker and instead of the buttons becoming something to share, the two girls go to war as part of a fab that sweeps the school. A good mid-middle grade story about friendship that will make everyone want to collect buttons!


Eleanor has been preparing for the end of the world for her whole life because of her grandfather being a survivalist so when she reads on a website that a world ending asteroid is supposed to hit at the beginning of April, she knows just what to do. Encouraged by her best friend, she starts sharing her news with others but only a small group will listen. Will the world end in April? This one you will need to read to find out.
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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. 

Monday, November 4, 2019

#IMWAYR November 4, 2019


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. I am currently a first round Cybil judge for the middle grade fiction, so expect to see a lot of middle grade fiction for the next few weeks. A lot of middle grade fiction.

Here's what I read this week:

Middle Grade


Imagine if your whole life you thought your mother knew nothing about her Native American background, and then you find a box in your attic that proves otherwise. Edie has always wanted to know more about her family, especially since when people look at her they expect her to know her tribe and history but her mother was adopted so she's always assumed she didn't know either. Then Edie and her friends find a box in the attic with a picture of another Edie. This Edie has written letter after letter about her life on and off the reservation. The box is the beginning of Edie's self-discovery and family discovery.


Audra has always known her parents were doing something dangerous. She would hear her father, a famous magician talking with her mother about the danger, but her mother would always tell her father to wait another year before he told more to Audra. But some secrets cannot be kept hidden forever. When the Russian soldiers come to her tiny Lithuanian farm looking for her parents, Audra is given a package and told to save it and bring it to another town at all costs. Imagine Audra's surprise when the only thing in that package is a book. Swept into a time in history when the Lithuanian language and books were considered illegal, Audra must decide if her safety and freedom are worth hiding a few books. A wonderful story about a part of history most kids and adults may not know.


Told in a similar fashion to Refuge, Alan Gratz's Allies follows a number of men and women as they experience D Day from water, land, and air. The stories weave together and overlap and give a clear picture of the chaos, heartbreak, and triumph of the day from the point of view of all of the allies involved.


When the popular boys at school suddenly start paying attention to Mila, she doesn't know how to react. Some of her friends are even jealous. But as the boys start giving hugs, making comments, and getting too close, Audra starts being very uncomfortable and wants to do something. But how can she explain this away when no one else seems to mind?  This is a perfect book in the time of the #MeToo movement for girls to understand that there are some things that are simply not okay.



If you, or someone you know, likes kid spy books, then you will love Charlie Thorne and the Last Equation.
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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. 

Monday, October 28, 2019

#IMWAYR October 28, 2019


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. I am currently a first round Cybil judge for the middle grade fiction, so expect to see a lot of middle grade fiction for the next few weeks. A lot of middle grade fiction.

Here's what I read this week:

Middle Grade


If you, or someone you know, likes kid spy books, then you will enjoy Jada Sly, Artist & Spy. When Jada finds out her mom has died on in a plane crash, she doesn't believe it can be true. Her mother has spent her whole life teaching her about being a spy and Jada is sure that she must just be on a secret mission. When she comes to live with her father in New York and immediately notices she's being followed, she is sure she is right. Unfortunately her father just thinks she's having trouble coping with her mother's death and won't believe her. But right away Jada meets a group of kids in her new school that have a secret spy club and they are more than willing to go on Jada's adventure. A cute story full of twists and turns. You do need to suspend your disbelief a bit about the spy club, but who knows, maybe all schools have secret spy clubs. After all, it is a secret.


2019 seems to be the year of books about divorce or sibling death. This is the first I've read though where the child herself is having a challenging time dealing with the change, to the point of throwing a toaster through a window. Liberty is always so busy making sure everyone else in her life is happy that she doesn't focus on her own mental health. With the help of a therapist, she starts to see that self-care is as important as family care. This book covers important topics and felt very real and powerful. I hope it lands in the hands of kids (and parents) who need to know they are not alone.


Look Both Ways follows ten kids as they leave school and head out on their journey home. Their experiences are all unique. I really wanted to like this book because I love other books by the author and have heard good things about this one. I thought each separate story was enjoyable, but with I could see more connection between them. It is possible I just read it too quickly. I'd love to hear others' thoughts on this one.


Young Adult


I am always looking for new YA fantasies and this world created by Laura Sebastian was very satisfying. Theodosia was six when her kingdom was taken away and her mother was killed. Forced to live in the castle of the conquerer, Theo, now known to all as Thora or the Ash Princess, has had to play a part in order to survive. But when she is forced to kill her own father, she realizes that survival isn't enough. It is time to take back her kingdom and save her people. Fans of Sarah J. Maas' Throne of Glass series will enjoy this one. 
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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.