Sadly, the days of summer break are dwindling to an end for those of us still in school (noooo!). Now we have to think about reading our assigned books for school. The reading part isn't what irks me though. It is the books themselves.
I understand that the books teachers assign us are usually ones that they believe will make us think or are somehow related to the material we will be studying later on. None the less, some of these books are boring! It'd be nice if we were able to choose our own, even if it were from a limited list.
I was lucky in the fact that I never had summer reading assignments in elementary school, which left my entire summers to read whatever it was that I wanted to! Imagine my surprise in sixth grade when I was made to read a book over the summer... :)
So, this and future Summer Reading Sundays are dedicated to discussing any books we've had to read over the summer. Please email or leave a comment about the worst, best or any book in between that you were assigned for summer reading!
I'll start with my earliest experience: 6th grade--Summer of the Monkeys by Wilson Rawls.
I had high hopes for the whole summer reading thing because of this book! I remember that I really loved this book when I first read it. When my brother got to 6th grade he had to read it too, and I couldn't contain myself. I was absolutely overjoyed that I would have someone to discuss the book in depth with.
Summer of the Monkeys basically followed Jay Berry around the creek bottoms near his home as he searched for and tried to catch circus monkeys. The circus was giving out rewards for their monkeys to be brought back and Jay figured if he could catch all of them he might be able to make enough money to help his physically disabled sister, Daisy.
I thought Jay was pretty funny, especially when he was getting frustrated with the monkeys for out-smarting him. Rawls did a great job with Jay I think. He seemed real to me, which was partly why I liked this book so much. Besides that, I liked the plot. While I could predict some things, there were still enough twists to keep me going.
I liked Daisy too. I know she wasn't the most prominent character in the book (at least not at first) but she seemed so sweet. Jay was always getting annoyed by her, but isn't that just the brother-sister relationship? I know my brother is good at driving me crazy!
The setting was quite amazing as well. I loved how well I could picture their home and the creek bottoms!
I must also admit that I thought the movie did a pretty good job keeping with what happened. I liked who they picked to play both Daisy and Jay. They seemed to resemble the Daisy and Jay in my mind well. Obviously the book was better though.