This is the blog of children's book author and elementary school 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, July 18, 2022

#IMWAYR July 18, 2022


It's Monday What Are You Reading is hosted each week by Unleashing Readers and Teach Mentor Texts. If you are a person who loves kidlit, all you need to do to join is to blog about books you are reading on Monday, add your link to either of those two blogs, and post using the hashtag. I hope you will join in!

Last week I was on vacation so I was able to do so much reading! In addition to the books I wanted to finish, I was able to add an extra. All the books I read this week are must have additions to upper elementary and middle school classrooms and libraries.

Middle Grade

Repairing the World is a story about how to move on from loss. When Daisy loses her best friend, she has to figure out how to overcome her grief in order to move forward. She finds help in the birth of her babysister, new friends, and a project about Tikun Olam, or Repairing the World, she is assigned at Hebrew School. This book is a Bridge to Terabithia for modern times. 

Duet is the story of a bird named Mirabelle who loves to sing. When she meets a talented eleven year old prodigy named Michael, she becomes his muse as he learns to master Chopin. Elise Broach is a master of writing stories where small creatures from nature form a relationship with a child. I love her book Masterpiece about a beetle who paints. In Duet, Mirabelle and Michael are inspired by each other.

Last year, the kids of Fisher Middle School learned how to take action fighting the school's dress code. Their action made such a difference that this year the school and district is under new leadership, one that encourages action and has created a pilot climate class to encourage kids to think big. Mary Kate was supposed to start this class with her best friend Lucy, but Lucy has not been feeling well and no one knows why. Not having her best friend in school pushes Mary Kate to meet new kids who help to open her eyes to serious problems in her town. When the kids try to help solve these problems, they find that while they have the encouragement of the school administration, the mayor is their biggest enemy and that when it comes to climate change, systemic racism can also factor into the conversation. This sequel to Dress Coded will make you want to go out and do a better job taking care of the world and opens your eyes in so many ways. I hope it finds its way to policy makers.

Ellie has always been a larger sized person. The fat shaming from family members and classmates has caused her to create a list of Fat Girl Rules to live by. But when her best friend moves to another state, even those Fat Girl Rules can't protect her from the attitude of others. Thankfully she finds people who are in her corner who help her find her strength. The only thing I can think to say about this book is wow. Every page touches your soul. It is a must read book for kids and adults.

Thirst actually comes out tomorrow (Happy Book Birthday) but I had the chance to read it early from Netgalley. It's the story of Minni, a girl who lives in the poorest area of Mumbai where it is very difficult to find clean water. Minni and those who surround her don't just thirst for water, they thirst for the tickets to find their way into a brighter future and greater opportunities. When Minni's mother becomes ill, Minni has to step up to help her family by balancing school, her mother's job, taking care of herself, and going to computer class on the weekends. This is an excellent book and I'm glad it's been selected for this year's Global Read Aloud. Even though they are very different stories, it reminded me of Front Desk by Kelly Yang. The two books would be a good pair to read and discuss together in an upper elementary or middle grade classroom or to suggest to a child that age.


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


  1. I thought Thirst was great, too. Books related to the climate seems to be a theme for me right now so I should check out The First Rule of Climate Club.

  2. It looks like you had a fabulous reading week. Thanks for the heads up about The First Rule of Climate Club. Carrie Firestone is a new to me author so I will probably have to read Dress Coded too. Especially since it is the only book my library has by her. I loved StarFish too.

  3. I just saw Thirst on someone else's list. It's one I hadn't heard of but will have to watch for it. I need to read Dress Coded so I can get to Climate Club. ;)

  4. It's wonderful that you read so much over your vacation, Stacy! I'm very intrigued by The First Rule of Climate Club, but having never read Dress Coded, I should probably start with that one. I'm also so glad you got to read Starfish, because it is such a powerful book! Thirst is also one I keep hearing good things about. Thanks so much for the wonderful post!

  5. I really enjoyed Starfish as an audio book.

  6. I enjoyed Thirst and Starfish as well. I haven't read The First Rule of Climate Club or Dress Coded but I am going to add them to a list. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

  7. Starfish is one of my favorite reads from last year! Brilliantly done!
    Thirst is everywhere--I am very much looking forward to reading it. Same with Climate Club--I think it is so important!

    Happy reading this week!


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