Since I’ve been talking about Summer Reading and book bundles, I thought I’d start making some fun suggestions. For anyone doing the Tails and Tales theme, Thundercluck: Chicken of Thor by Paul Tillery IV and Meg Wittwer and the Zeus the Mighty series from Crispin Boyer fit the bill and have the shared mythological theme, too!
The second Thundercluck adventure is just as much fun as the first. Thundercluck and Brunhilde, the Valkyrie, find themselves on the outs with Odin, and head to Midgard (that’s us, Earth!) to match wits against three foes. Gorman the angry skull is back with two new fiends: Medda, a shape-shifting enchantress, and War-Tog, a warthog warrior that is too easily led into poor decisions. Thundercluck is a story of friendship being tested, and family secrets learned, but at its heart, it’s a story of learning to admit one’s mistakes. Black and white illustrations and a quickly-moving story makes this an excellent Summer Reading choice; you don’t need to have read the first book to jump on board, but the kids will want to.
Summer Reading ideas: Book bundle with the first Thundercluck and printables from the Thundercluck website; book bundle with Zeus the Mighty for a Tails and Tales spin on mythology; display with other mythology chapter books, like Joan Holub and Suzanne Williams’s Thunder Girls series. Don’t forget to have reference resources, like National Geographic’s Everything Mythology, available!
The first book in another fun series from National Geographic Kids and their fiction imprint, Under the Stars. Zeus the Mighty is a hamster who lives in Mount Olympus Pet Center with a variety of rescued animals, and heroines. Artie – short for Artemis, naturally – is the human the runs the Center and names her favorite rescues after Greek mythological heroes. The group all listen to a podcast, Greeking Out, that tells the stories of the Greek gods, but the animals take the stories to heart. Zeus believes he rules Mount Olympus, putting him at odds with Poseidon, the puffer fish who won’t give up control of his watery Atlantis and bristles at Zeus’s attempts to boss him around. Their first adventure is a quest for the Golden Fleas: a fun retelling of the tale of Jason, the Argonauts, and the Golden Fleece. The storytelling is light, there are cute black and white illustrations throughout, and a section on “The Truth Behind the Fiction” adds the perfect amount of nonfiction context to the story. Consider adding this to your shelves.
Summer Reading Ideas: Bundle with the second book in the series, The Maze of the Menacing Minotaur (the third book is out in August!) and add some printables from the Zeus the Mighty website. Display with other Greek mythology-flavored fiction, like Joan Holub and Suzanne William’s Goddess Girls and the Heroes in Training series, by Joan Holub, Suzanne Williams, and Tracey West. National Geographic has a great Weird But True book on Greek Mythology, too.
I took a few days to update this week, because my neighborhood library is open to public browsing and computer use now, and I was hopping! It’s been wild and surreal, having people in the library again; more and more kids are dribbling in, looking for books, and it is amazing to feel like a kids’ librarian again! I’ve also just got the great news that I’ll be returning to my branch at the end of next month, just in time for Summer Reading. It has been a good, if exhausting, week!
So, book bundles, book bundles, book bundles! Who’s doing them? I started putting them out and about in my library when we were at grab and go service, in my quest to give patrons a little bit of a browsing opportunity. The most popular by far was my storytime in a bundle, where I’d pair up 3 board and/or picture books in various themes, add a song sheet, and a coloring sheet or activity. They were super popular, and I definitely see continuing these in my future!
I also made some Mad Scientist bundles, where I’d bundle some fun STEM/science experiment books with experiments I found online (DK offers amazing resources for download) along with some fun printables I downloaded from Teachers Pay Teachers like this fun Mad Scientist headband from Mallory Homuth and this Mad Scientist Club packet from Molecules and Middle School.
If anyone’s doing book bundles, I’d love to hear more about them! I’ll be posting some fun book bundle ideas today, but in the meantime, I’m happy to share a link to my song sheets, created in Canva, for you to use in your bundles. Enjoy!