I'm a wife to my "Mr. Right". A momma of five. A maker of slow food and simple living. A collector of memories, a keeper of books, and a champion for books that make memories. An addict who likes my half-and-half with a splash of coffee. A fractured pot transformed by the One Who makes broken things beautiful. I heart homeschooling, brake for libraries, and am glad you're here with me on the journey! Be sure to subscribe to my monthly newsletter. Or, follow along with Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google +, Youtube, or Pinterest.

What We're Reading in June 2022

Looking in a Little Free Lending Library

Reading is important. In the schedule of our daily homeschool, it's second only to our Morning Time when we open God's Word and grow in our knowledge of Him. 

That said, in the summer months, reading is still important, but it often takes a back-burner to outdoorsy activities.

We experience so few delightfully warm days here in Minnesota that I don't want my kids to miss out on one minute of it all. I want them to feel the kiss of the sun and the squish of the dirt between their toes. I want them to run through the sprinklers and shoot a few hoops.

So, while my kids continue to read silently to themselves after our family devos each morning and while the younger ones who don't have jobs still listen as I read a chapter of our current novel out loud to them nearly every day after lunch, they don't hunker down with a book as often as at other times in the year. 

They turn fewer pages. They visit the library with me less. 

And that's fine by me. 

Here's what we're slowly reading in June. For your reference, with the start of summer, I've adjusted the "grade levels" of each of my boys to reflect their progression.

(This post contains affiliate links. Please see my disclosure policy for full details.)

What We're Reading in June 2022 #homeschool #kidlit #shelfie

Read Aloud- everybody

The Penderwicks- This first of a five-book series is a light-hearted retelling of the summer misadventures of four sisters, their dog Hound, and the boy next door.

After reading The Penderwicks as a family way back in 2015, my kids still claim that it's their most favorite read-aloud ever! Trouble is, the youngest two siblings were so young--only six and three--when we first cracked it open that they don't really remember much, if any, of the story. So, with big sister and biggest brother off at work each day during our read-aloud, this month seemed like the perfect time to revisit it.

Two things have become glaringly obvious about the seven-year time lapse between the first read-through and the second. First, in 2015, I had to do a sizable amount of on-the-fly editing as I read to compensate for a handful of sassy/snarky dialogue portions and one entire chapter of boy-meets-girl-crush. But since my 2022 audience is a bit older than their older siblings were at the time of the 2015 reading, I've only had to change a few words. And second, older kids have a different sense of humor than younger kids. I don't think my boys are enjoying the plot points nearly as much as they did all those years ago.  

Jamie- that's me!

The Silence Between Us- I "read"this YA on audio and while I'm not the target market, I enjoyed listening and learning about the deaf community. This is a clean romantic fiction about a girl who's been deaf since she was twelve after a tragic bout of meningitis. Up until the opening scene, she had attended a deaf school but now must face the struggles of going to a hearing high school. While there, she meets an unlikely supporter--a popular rich boy who's dealing with his own growing pains. Together they learn how to be heard.

I'd recommend this book to older teens and young adults. Please note: There are three instances of a chaste kiss between the two main characters.

Miracle Season- When her older brother Levi is tragically injured in a boating accident and she watches as hospital bills begin to mount, thirteen-year-old Persephone Clark decides to enter her town in Small Town Revival, a reality television show. She hopes of winning enough prize money to alleviate some of the medical costs for her parents. But with some small-town gossip swirling around her, a fractured relationship with her best friend that's struggling to heal, and a growing collection of lies she's told in an effort to keep her project a secret, Persephone finds her fail-proof plan unraveling right before her eyes. It will take the help of a few unexpected allies to set everything to right again. 

This middle-grade fiction isn't hitting shelves until August 2022, but I was fortunate enough to snag an Advanced Reader Copy. I think the author has done an exceptional job of painting the very real feelings of a young teen grappling with her changing world. 

I especially appreciate how she handled the main character's habit of lying. She did not veil Persephone's transformation with an unnecessary moralistic lesson. She simply showed the natural personal and social fallout of a lie and the hard work that must be done to rebuild trust after one's reputation has been tarnished.

The Lazy Genius Kitchen- I read the precursor to this title, The Lazy Genius Way, a year or so ago and really enjoyed it. While I didn't necessarily learn any new tips or tricks about organizing and creating helpful rhythms in my day, I was grateful for the gentle reminders included in the pages. I wish I could say the same for the author's sophomore offering. 

Admittedly, I'm probably not the target audience for a book on how to use a kitchen as I feel pretty comfortable in my cooking space. Even so, I feel like the information it provided could have easily been written as a really long blog post. The entire thing was rather repetitive and felt more lazy than genius. The author's continuous passive-aggressive "humor" only trivialized the commitment of women who desire to do more than just slap something on the table.

I'm only halfway through with the book and have decided to file it as a DNF in my reading journal. It might be perfect for a newly married woman or a college student, but it's lackluster for a woman who's been meal-making for over two decades. 

Super Boy- 11th grade

Gulag Archipelago- With his summer work schedule and his CAP responsibilities, my oldest son doesn't have a ton of time for reading right now. He's still working his way through this classic by Russian novelist Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn which details the forced labor camp system set up by the Soviets between 1918 and 1956. I read portions of all three volumes in high school and while I don't remember much of it, I know that it is exactly the kind of book my oldest son enjoys: historical accounts of unique military and political decisions.

Blonde Warrior- 9th grade

The Guardian- When a federal judge is murdered, US Marshall Marcus O'Malley is assigned to protect the only witness to the crime. This is book 2 in a Christy Award-winning series by Dee Henderson who writes John Grisham-esque Christian fiction. In full disclosure, I have not personally read this book. But it came highly recommended to my son by another homeschool mom who shares his love of suspenseful novels.

Since the YA section is generally the shady back alley of the library and can not be trusted, I've resorted to finding books for my teens that are written by clean adult fiction authors.

Greased Lightning- 8th grade

The Broken Blade- Other than the fact that one of the characters uses God's name in vain in the very first chapter, The Broken Blade is a clean adventure-filled book about a 13-year-old French boy named Pierre La Page.

When his father is injured and can no longer join his fellow voyageurs to make the trek to Grand Portage, Pierre steps in to take his place. He has no idea what's in store for him as the youngest member of the brigade.

My 8th grader, like his older brother before him, is loving this book!

The Dude- 5th 

My youngest son is a huge Patricia MacLachlan fan. Admittedly, most of her back catalog is quite a bit young for him. But summer is the perfect time to let him read breezy books that he enjoys even if they are not necessarily literarily challenging for him.

Wondrous Rex- This is the story of a dog who comes to the rescue of a novelist who finds herself struggling to write her next big hit. 

The Boxcar Children Beginnings- This is a lovely tribute to the classic series The Boxcar Children. It serves as a prequel look at the lives of the four Alden kids before they become orphans. 

That's what we're reading in June. How about you? What books are you currently enjoying?


  1. I'm reading aloud The Trumpet of the Swan to my 10, 7 and 5 year old. My 10 year old son is reading Whale of the Wild by Roseanne Parry after reading her book A Wolf Called Wander (which he absolutely loved). My 7 year old is working on a Nate the Great book and my 5 year old isn't a reader yet. 🙂 I'm reading Hold On to Your Kids by Gordon Neufeld and Gabor Mate. So far it's good but I'm moving through it slowly.

    1. Also, I didn't mean to reply as Anonymous. I wasn't logged in to my Google account. 🙂

    2. I've not read a Wolf Called Wonder. It sounds like one my 12 year old might like. I'll have to look into it. Thanks for the suggestion and for sharing your fun June stack!