Monthly Archives: May 2018

2018.50 – The Porcupine of Truth

Book hangover, 100%. The Porcupine of Truth by Bill Konigsberg was phenomenal.

I read Honestly Ben in April, which prompted me to see what else he wrote. This title intrigued me, I mean, what is a porcupine of truth?!

Turns out The Porcupine of Truth is a magical creature that represents truth, healing, and love.

Carson is spending the summer in Billings, Montana with his mom, taking care of his dying and estranged dad. There, he meets Aisha, who has just been kicked out of her house after her dad finds out she’s a lesbian. Together, they embark on a crazy road trip, trying to find Carson’s grandfather (his father’s father) who suddenly disappeared from his father’s life when his father was a child. Along the way, they meet interesting people, many of whom provide some excellent life advice.

This book is heartbreaking, thoughtful, goofy and hopeful–often within the same paragraph. And, it spoke to my heart through puns and dorky jokes! Seriously, I need to be friends with Carson.

I highly recommend this book! And, I know my students will love it too!

Bill Kongisberg’s next book, The Music of What Happens, comes out on January 29, 2019–it’s already on my list to read next year!


2018.39 – Educated

I must have gotten this book onto my library holds from a “most exciting books coming in 2018” list, because I can’t remember where I heard about Educated by Tara Westover. All I know is that it popped up to check out off my holds, and here I am.


I’m not entirely sure what to say about this book, except that wow, way to go Tara! She grew up in a Mormon survivalist family, with a dad who was suspicious of the government, didn’t believe in doctors, and didn’t trust public education. The first time Tara walked into a classroom was when she was 17, and a freshman at BYU. As she grows and earns her education, she slowly starts to see her family’s different beliefs, and must reconcile them with her new worldview.

She persevered and eventually earned her PhD!

One thing that really struck me about this book is that it’s not a history, it’s the present. Tara is only a couple years older than I am, and her childhood took place parallel to my very much opposite growing up experiences.

Here’s a video interview from CNN with Tara Westover. She talks about her book and growing up, and gives a little taste of her education journey.