June's Review Roundup

A long time ago (ok, not that long ago) I ran a book blog.

While I was in school working on my teaching license, I passed the time by reading, A LOT, and still today those two years of courses have been my biggest reading years yet according to my Goodreads lists (70 & 81 books to be exact). See, I was not happy in school the second time around. I graduated as an English major in 2009 and loved every moment of reading and analyzing literature, but when I decided to become a teacher and I had to go back and take education classes, I was bored out of my mind. 

So, I channeled my roots and went back to reading and writing about books via The Hopeful Heroine, a book blog about believing in the power of story. It's a bit outdated, but the blog is still around if you want to check out the goofy-ness of my mid-twenties. Throughout these last three years of teaching, I've been getting my footing and establishing who I am as a teacher. I will always stand by the fact that I'm a reader first, teacher second, and in fact, even described myself via a professional statement on my resume as "a passionate bibliophile who believes in the power of story, dedicated to inspiring and teaching children and young adults how to become lifelong readers." If I can, I might squeeze that on on a business card someday....

Still, that summary couldn't be more true of who I am and who I have always been. And you know, amidst the busy life of a teacher and aspiring novelist, I really miss writing book reviews. It's just in my nature to share book reviews and recommendations with people because I want everyone, especially kids, to read! (I guess you could say I'm a little bit Kathleen Kelly.)

One of the things I tried these last few years was creating a teacher persona around the web as MsLReads. It's led to me connecting with other teachers and authors via Twitter, sharing books on Instagram with my students, and even starting a podcast, though I got overwhelmed at all the avenues and took a break. But, I'm back at it, slowly, with the plan to relaunch the podcast in October and this summer, I've started sharing my reads back on Instagram with some mini reviews! 

Why Insta-Reviews?

Because, honestly, I don't want to spend the hours writing book reviews again and I know that readers just want a quick suggestion, so Instagram has become an avenue I enjoy! Mini book reviews allow me to get out a short summary, all my feels about the books, and why I think you should pick it up. I also rate each book on a 5 start rating, and share what I think are appropriate ages for reading as well as some insight to the content. But for those who don't follow me on that social media avenue, I'll thought I'd start doing a monthly roundup of my reviews so you don't miss out either. 

Here's what I posted in June!

The Explorers: The Door in the Alley by Adrienne Kress

A middle grade fantasy/adventure

The Silver Gate by Kristin Bailey

A middle grade fantasy about family

Girl Waits with Gun by Amy Stewart

An adult true-crime/mystery novel.

If you follow me over on Instagram (either on my teacher account or personal one) I'll be trying to share a mini review at least once a week, but if you miss out, I'll start posting monthly round-ups at the end of each month through the year.  And, depending on my time frame or if I have more to say about a book (which inevitably I will with some) I'm hoping to post a few longer reviews or recommendations here on the blog. 

Let me know what you think of the Insta-Review format and if there's anything more you'd like to see in terms of book reviews or recommendations.

Until then,

What was your June reading list like? Share some of your favorite reads below!