It’s Monday & I survived Hurricane Matthew

October 10, 2016

In fact, we didn’t get much more than some wind (highest was 55mph, according to the weather peeps) and rain. We didn’t even lose power this time! So that was nice. I’m genuinely saddened by the devastation and death in Haiti as well as the towns in Florida that did get destroyed in pretty significant ways, though.

Today, I’m reflecting on what I’m going to do differently next semester. I realized that we have done too much Cinderella stuff. Next time, I’ll use Cinderella for the example but assign a different fairy/folk tale for the students’ assignments. I’m also going to just do one whole class novel instead of letting the students pick from three. That way, we can have an actual in-depth discussion as a class.

Then, if I teach this class again in the fall, I’m totally doing censorship. TOTALLY.

On to the books.

This past week, I read:

Zahrah the WindseekerZahrah the Windseeker by Nnedi Okorafor
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This was super cute. Also, let’s be real: it’s hard for me not to like a book that includes a discussion of black hair politics and makes use of the trope of the talking book. Plus also, it’s a FRIENDSHIP BOOK and those are totally my jam, so.


GhostsGhosts by Raina Telgemeier
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was super cute, and I really liked how honest it was about dealing with death and dying–especially for Maya (the one who is unafraid of/curious about death) and Cat (who lives in a little bit of denial about it).

Maya might be the actual best, honestly.

I understand there are some issues with the representation of Dia de los Muertos (see more about that here). As someone with no experience/knowledge of the holiday beyond a vague “yes, I’ve heard about that,” I can’t speak to that part, but I trust those who know more about such things than I do.

I also abandoned one book:

Juliet Takes a BreathJuliet Takes a Breath by Gabby Rivera

10/9/16: So, I liked the opening of this book, but I feel like it’s requiring too much thinking from me, and I am just not in the headspace. Maybe later. Made it to pg. 54.



Currently, I’m reading:

Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty

Not much has changed since Wednesday. Still making my way through Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty at work. Haven’t yet settled on what book I’ll be reading at home this week.

Also, in TV news:

We started watching Impastor on Hulu, got to the fourth episode, and now it’s gone from Hulu. UGH.

Buddy is Hulu, basically. (source

Buddy is Hulu, basically. (source)

Memo to self: double check when a show will be pulled from Hulu before you start watching it. I mean.

Kidlit version hosted by Kellee Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen of Teach Mentor Texts; original version hosted by Kathryn at Book Date.

Kidlit version hosted by Kellee Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen of Teach Mentor Texts; original version hosted by Kathryn at Book Date.

Happy reading, everyone!



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  1. Brendon

    Glad to hear you were safe during the hurricane! Thank you for the updates!

    • Akilah

      Thanks, Brendon! 😀

  2. crbrunelle

    So glad the weather wasn’t a problem for you. I have enjoyed some of Nnedi Okorafor’s books, but haven’t gotten to that one yet. We just unpacked the book fair today so now Ghosts is available to me (I have it on backorder right now). I have seen some of the reviews about cultural issues and have been eager to see for myself.

    • Akilah

      I’ll be interested to hear what you think. I don’t work with young people, but if I did, and they liked the book, I would probably point them to a book that gives a more comprehensive history or overview of the celebration. I also have my own ideas about why Telgemeier chose the mission as a setting, but since I’m not familiar with the town she based her story on, I can’t speak to it in any kind of authentic way. But I get the frustration. If a party for black people was held on a plantation in a story written by a white person, I would be side-eyeing it pretty hard.

  3. Jenny @ Reading the End

    Whoa! That sucks about your show getting pulled from Hulu! I would throw a tiny tantrum if that happened to me. Does your library have it on DVD perhaps? That’s how I sometimes get my shows that aren’t on streaming — although I admit it mainly works because I’m part of a smallerish library system and there aren’t THAT many people placing holds and making demands on their DVD collection.

    • Akilah

      Oh, I forgot about the library! Thank you for the reminder. I forgot that they have TV shows sometimes (it’s the sometimes that throws me).

  4. Morgan @ Backlist Babe

    Glad you guys are okay and didn’t get hit too hard with this weather.
    I’ve been wanting to get more into Okorafor since I read Binti and everyone has been raving about her for a bit now, so I need to add this one to the list. I’m very interested in reading a book that dabbles in the topic of black hair (because I don’t think I’ve ever read anything like that before). Meanwhile, Ghosts has been chilling out in my room for a while now, and I was honestly a little hesitant to jump into it when I noticed all of the Dia de los Muertos (because I thought there was a good chance of misrepresentation). I may give it a shot soon, though. Juliet Takes a Breath is ALSO on my reading list; but, alas, I am in a similar headspace where “think-reads” aren’t really appealing to me.


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