11 April 2011


As I Was Saying about the Letter B . . .

Join this week's Bargain Book Bonanza
at Baja Greenawalt's Cozy Book Nook!

Kindergarten teachers must have so much fun when when whole weeks are devoted to a single letter! Just think . . . blues and browns on the bulletin board . . . brownies and berries at snack time . . . all sorts of balls at recess . . . and no end of books for extended story time! (And now I imagine a kindergarten teacher shaking her head at my idealised view of what goes on in her classroom. LOL!)

For today's BBB (*giggle*), I have two B-books to share . . .

I got the idea of posing books against books
from another blogger's post on her weekly haul.
What do you think?

(Spot the Encyclopedia Brown books from two weeks ago in the background?)

In Volume 30 of my "Tutor Tales", I wrote a bit about a trip my tutees and I took to the used bookstore, which resulted in Star Shaker spending a week with a slightly used copy of The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner.

Now, when she was done with it, she said that she wouldn't mind reading more books in the series--which was both music and the siren song of serendipity to my ears.

As those who frequent used bookstores know, it's very hard to find series books in order and therefore advisable to buy what you need in advance. But the week that Star Shaker was there, there were not one, but two copies of The Boxcar Children (which is, of course, the first book in the series)--and not two, but three copies of Surprise Island (which is the second)!!! And I use three exclamation marks to tell you about that because in the ESL tutoring business, having both a "student's copy" and a "teacher's copy" of books you have to buy yourself is a luxury.

What you see in the photo are my "teacher's copies," which I've already used to make simple reading comprehension and vocabulary tests for her.

There has been no sign of The Yellow House Mystery (the third book) yet . . . but that's probably a good thing. These books may be easy to read and excellent "training wheels" for Star Shaker, but it is best to practice reading a lot of different styles. (It's also best not to drive the tutor crazy. And the biggest surprise in Surprise Island was that it nearly had me pulling my hair out. LOL!)

And just when you thought the Bonanza of Things That Begin with B was over for today . . .

Letter B Bonus: There will be a Reading Diary entry on the first Boxcar Children book tomorrow!


Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy said...

J, you crack me up! Do you want me to mail you my Babysitter books? Cuz, I will, if you really want them!

Great job on the Boxcar Children books; I do remember reading some of those. I'll have to get back on to reading that series someday soon. Now I need to go and check out YOUR Volume 30 link.


Kathy M.

Enbrethiliel said...


That's a very kind offer, Kathy, and I'm going to take you up on it! Thank you. =D

DeLynne said...

En, that is a bountiful bevy of beautiful books. Sorry. I couldn't resist. Lately I have come across the Boxcar Children and would like to get to know them better. Thanks for sharing. xo

Enbrethiliel said...


Thanks for hosting this week, DeLynne! =)

Lesa said...

You do have letter B coming out of your ears this week!!

How lucky to find the teacher editions! Why did Surprise Island drive you crazy?

Yep, no way could DeLynne resist-- she is mad for alliteration!

Leslie said...

Ohhh, I loved that story (I've onlynread the first)!
I remember my 3rd grade teacher (who thumped my head because I didn't mark the right bubble on a test, but it was because her FINGERS were covering the answer!!) read that book to us, and about a third of the way through, the class had to go to some assembly. But I was excused and got to wait in the room...so...I snuck and read ahead..and finished it!
Ahhh, good times. Good times!

Enbrethiliel said...


Lesa -- "B" is an easy letter for a book blog. (Is it any wonder? LOL!)

I know that Warner deliberately made her books easy for early readers, but I thought that Surprise Island was too easy. I tried to read a few chapters before bed once, because I find the dynamic between a mind that wants to wander and a text that is irresistibly readable really relaxing (Now that I've written it down, it sounds so strange! LOL!); but Surprise Island didn't engage me at all, and I practically threw it away in my haste to get to the Trivium book instead.

Also, the repetition (which I admit is a good thing for young readers) kind of drove me up the wall. Like in the scene in which Benny thinks the water is too cold: three or four different characters tell him it's because he doesn't get all the way in. In real life, I can't stand it when people repeat themselves or even when they repeat what others have said, and I guess it drives me crazy in book form, too.

Leslie -- That's a great memory! I never had a teacher read a chapter book to my class, so I was never left hanging; but I know that had I been in your place, I would have done the exact same thing. =)

Thanks for visiting! I appreciate it.

Lesa said...

Yeah, repetition is annoying. I know several people who annoy me that way. I'm thinking that, like Leslie, I may have read only the first one.