We are blessed in this region of New Hampshire to have an amazing bookseller called The Toadstool. There are 3 locations, and it's an independently owned bookstore that competes with a Borders. The Toadstool has been around for about 30 years, I think, -at least as long as I've lived in this neck of the woods. Each of their locations is different, but all of them offer an amazing selection of books, an extremely knowledgeable staff, and a wonderful browsing atmosphere. They also are wonderful to teachers. Teachers get a discount for classroom books ranging from 20%-25% off.
This morning 2 of my teaching colleagues and I met at the local shop to browse for books for our classrooms. We have the grand total of $139 each to spend on our classroom libraries or to round out our novel sets for language arts. I already knew what I wanted to buy, but I had fun browsing the shelves for great middle school novels. I will be purchasing a classroom set of Mike Lupica's Miracle on 49th Street. I already have a set of his novel Heat which I used last year. My kids, girls and boys alike, enjoyed Heat, but I wanted a novel with a female protagonist as a counterpart to it. So that eats up most of my portion of book money.
I did buy a couple of other titles - books that either intrigued me or that I know are popular with the middle school set and I just haven't read them yet. (With my own money of course!) I got a copy of Stephanie Meyers' Twilight because I know that the girls are all reading this. It's not what I would choose to offer 6th graders, but I want to stay current. I also bought The Mysterious Benedict Society on the recommendation of my incoming 5th grade niece. She and her brother have led me to some great books! Finally I found a book called Theodosia and the Serpents of Chaos that intrigued me. It's set in London in 1906 and appears to be a combination of adventure, magic, and mystery. Amazon describes it as mix of Nancy Drew and Indiana Jones. So I have my next set of books to read!
We're headed to Providence this afternoon to celebrate Elder Son's birthday #28. It's hard to believe - he's as old as his dad was when we got married. Where does the time go!