"Outside a dog a book is man's best friend, inside a dog it is too dark to read!" -Groucho Marx========="The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid." -Jane Austen========="I don’t believe in the kind of magic in my books. But I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book."-JK Rowling========"I spend a lot of time reading." -Bill Gates=========“Ahhh. Bed, book, kitten, sandwich. All one needed in life, really.” -Jacqueline Kelly=========

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Swim the Fly by Don Calame

OK, teen librarians get your pencils out and mark this book down for your next order. Teen boys, read this book if you want a good laugh about stuff that you will be able to relate to. Teen girls read this book to find out more about boys! Everyone else, read this book for the sheer enjoyment of it.

Swim the Fly by Don Calame is a seriously funny and perfect "boy" book, which librarians all spend half their lives trying to find.  And if you aren't a teen librarian, just read the thing.  But be prepared to laugh.

This coming-of-age story is about three friends, Matt, Sean, and Coop who challenge themselves to accomplish a goal every summer.  This summer their goal is to see a naked girl. Along the way Matt, who has a crush on the new girl on the swim team, volunteers to swim the butterfly in competition for the team.  It is a stroke that he doesn't know how to swim and is by far the hardest swim stroke to master. The book is full of barf, farts, and dumb jokes, many that made me laugh out loud, and funny passages that I shared with my husband.

*First lines, Chapter 1:
"Movies don’t count," Cooper says. "The Internet -doesn’t count. Magazines don’t count. A real, live naked girl. That’s the deal. That’s our goal for this summer."
"Been there, done that," Sean says.
"Taking baths with your sister -doesn’t count, either, Sean." Cooper snorts.
*Quote from page 56:
I kick my sneakers off and fling them into the coat closet with my toes. There's a crash, and a bunch of canisters roll out onto the vestibule floor..the blue one says Nutraworld Organic Fiber Laxative and the red one says Nutraworld Organic Muscle-Building Protein Powder...
You get the idea.  Adolescent boys. Mixed up cans. Adolescent jokes. Lots of fun!

*For participation in First Line Friday at A Few More Pages.
*For participation in The Friday 56 at Freda's Voice.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Top Ten Bookish Websites

Hosted at Broke and Bookish
Top Bookish Websites: websites I go to for all things related to books and reading!

1. YALSA (Young Adult Library Services Association, part of the ALA )--- Award books and book lists galore.

2. ALA (American Library Association)--- more on book awards and professional resources. Of special interest to me it has lots of information on book banning and 1st Amendment rights.

3. WorldCat--- cataloger's dream resource and inter-library loan resource.

4. Library of Congress--every educator should be familiar with this invaluable resource.

5. Stuff for the Teenage---New York Public Library.  More than books...but a lot about books, too!

6. Best 100 Novels List--- Top 100 Novels of all-time as voted by regular people.  This list actually reflects a better cross section of choices than the hoity-toity lists created by college professors. You can actually vote and the list changes occasionally.

7. Goodreads--- indispensable resource to book bloggers!

8. Teenreads---the Ultimate Teen Reading List, which is linked here.

9. Book in Series Database---The Nebraska Library Commission. A wonderful resource for teen librarians who can't keep track of all the books in the popular series that kids read.

10. Internet Public Library---This "library" is not a brick and mortar place, but is a fun and helpful resource.

11. LibraryThing---People can create a list of favorite books and organize them attractively.

12. Stop, You are Killing Me---a website to die for, if you love mysteries.

13. WLMA (Washington Library Media Association)--- this is my state association.

14. AASL (American Association of School Librarians)---25 Best Websites for Teaching and Learning.

15.  Best Books 4 Teens---Lists galore... according to best books in each genre.  Even has a list of best books for teens so far in 2011.

Additional sites I've discovered from other participants of this assignment:

-Flashlight Worthy Books---book lists!!!!! (Thanks Endless Reading!)
-Project Gutenburg---free e-books (Thanks All the Books I Can Read!)
-YA Lit--Upcoming and recently published YA books (Thanks The Reader Room!)
-VOYA--Voice for YA Lit (Thanks Phantom Paragrapher!)
-JaneAusten.org-- Everything Jane Austen.  Love it!  (Thanks Sarah Says!)
-Sync YA--Free audio downloads for teens this summer.  (Thanks Young Readers!)
-Point of View Books--Information about books that cover tough topics (Thanks Smash Attack Reads!)
-Cybils--Bloggers Book Awards (that's us!) (Thanks There's a Book!)
-School Library Journal--Articles on everything related to libraries and books. (Thanks SharingSoda!)
-Book Drum--for background information on our favorite books.  A real find! (Thanks Peppermint PhD!)
-ALAN--Assembly on Literature for Adolescents (Thanks Brooke Reviews!)
-NCTE--National Council of Teachers of English (Anti-Censorship Center) (Thanks Brooke Reviews!)
-Literature Maps- Find similar authors to your favorites. Instant and no sign-ups (Thanks Book Nympho)

Can you tell that I am creating this list for myself?

It's Monday, 6/27/11, and I'm reading...

Book Journey

It's Monday and I'm finally reading again!

I'm reading:
Swim the Fly by Don Calame---a humorous coming-of-age story about three boys whose summer goals are to see a girl naked and to learn to swim the butterfly stroke.

I'm listening to:
Hold Still by Nina LaCour---Caitlin has to start her life over after the devastating suicide of her best friend. "With the help of family and new-found friends, Caitlin will encounter first love, broaden her horizons, and start to realize that true friendship didn’t die with Ingrid."-Goodreads

I recently finished:
Border Songs by Jim Lynch---Set on the US/Canadian Border, this story exposes the illegal activities and temptations that cross the border every day.Told from the point-of-views of several people: an aging and financially-strapped dairy farmer; his son, a border patrol agent; a pro-marijuana professor; and his Canadian daughter who has a way with plants...

I hope to start soon:
Charles and Emma: The Darwin's Leap of Faith by Deborah Heiligman---This "new biography of Charles Darwin is a thought-provoking account of the man behind evolutionary theory: how his personal life affected his work and vice versa. The end result is an engaging exploration of history, science, and religion for young readers."-Goodreads

*** Sarah Dessen fans, please vote on my survey, top right of home page.  I am trying to determine which of her books I should read first and I want input.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Brain Rules by John Medina

Finally! After the events of the last few weeks, with my husband having surgery for cancer and the end of the school year, I can turn my attention to reading and blogging again. Brain Rules: 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home, and School by John Medina has been my "project book" for the past few months and I finished it while sitting in the hospital's waiting room.

When I say "project book" I mean it in the most positive of definitions. I read Brain Rules to gain new information about ways that I can be a better educator and to appease my general curiosity about new brain research. I wasn't disappointed on either score.

The book is divided into twelve rules:
#1 Exercise boosts brain power.
#2 The human brain evolved, too.
#3 Every brain is wired differently.
#4 We don't pay attention to boring things. (Teacher: take note!)
#5 Repeat to remember (Short term memory)
#6 Remember to repeat (Long term memory)
#7 Sleep well, think well.
#8 Stressed brains don't learn the same way. (Kids can't learn from teachers they don't feel safe around.)
#9 Stimulate more of the senses. (Come on teachers--jazz up those lessons!)
#10 Vision trumps all other senses. (Show, don't just tell; pictures are very important to learning.)
#11 Male and female brains ARE different. (Is it time to reconsider mixed gender classrooms?)
#12 We are powerful and natural explorers. (Can we reorganize our lessons to allow for more exploration and discovery?)

Each chapter contained both fascinating and thought-provoking information.  Here are a few of my favorite tidbits:
  • We must sleep on new information if we have any hope of remembering it; 
  • Emotionally arousing events tend to be remembered better than neutral events;
  • No matter what teenagers appear to think or do, the brain cannot multitask
  • Design lessons in ten-minute segments for maximum attention and retention.
  • To improve chances of remembering something, reproduce the environment in which the information went into the brain.
  • Smells have an unusual power to bring back memories (perhaps this is a huge untapped resource for educators.)
  • We learn and remember best through pictures, not through written or spoken words.
I can't remember who told me to read this book but I will recommend it to all the teachers at my school.  In fact, I really think that this book should be required reading for all new teachers or teachers-in-training.

I love it when teachers practice what they preach.  John Medina actually puts his brain rules into practice on his website.  I recommend, if you are interested in this information at all, that you visit his website and spend some time reading, viewing, and listening to more information about Brain Rules and Brain Rules for Babies! Go to the link here!  Happy learning!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

A Different Kind of Post...About Cancer and Comfort

Tomorrow my husband, the love of my life, is having surgery for prostate cancer. Now I know that this blog is specifically set up for me to talk about books and bookish things, not personal or religious things. But today I am breaking my own rules to talk just a little bit about cancer and comfort.

After learning of his diagnosis, Don and I decided right away that we were going to share the news with family, friends, and co-workers. Another friend who was diagnosed at approximately the same time with prostate cancer decided not to share the news with anyone. (We ended up bumping into him at the clinic so we learned of his diagnosis and decision to keep things quiet at that time.) I understand why our friend would want to maintain his privacy, but we decided that we needed the love and support of our friends.  And we decided for us support was more important than privacy. Admittedly though, it is a little like living our lives out loud. It's as if everyone knows what is going on, which is fine most of the time but can get a bit draining or annoying.  Weighing our decision to share the cancer diagnosis and treatment options against privacy I still think that we made the right choice. Why?  Because comfort comes in many forms.

Comforting words and actions have been directed toward us from so many quarters. Words of encouragement, notes sent mail or e-mail, telephone calls, offers of food, prayers, and time off work to go to appointments, pats on the back, hugs, and listening ears have all given us solace and comfort. Our best friend put us in touch with his cousin, a urologist in Seattle, who provided a recommendation that we see his partner a well-known prostate surgeon.  This man will be doing the surgery tomorrow and it feels like a miracle that we found him.

Sue, a gal at church, purchased and gave us a daily devotional guide, Jesus Calling by Sarah Young. I typically don't care for these types of guides but this one really speaks to my heart, as if God is actually talking to me.  Now, when I find worry creeping in to my thoughts I read a passage from it and it calms me. Here are portions of a few devotions from this little gem:
I AM WITH YOU, watching over you constantly.  I am Emmanuel (God with you); my Presence enfolds you in radiant Love. Nothing, including the brightest blessings and the darkest trials, can separate you from Me.--from May 29th devotion
The way to walk through demanding days is to grip My hand tightly and stay in communication with Me. Let your thoughts and spoken words be richly flavored with trust and thankfulness. Regardless of the day's problems, I can keep you in perfect Peace as you stay close to Me. --from June 4th devotion
 I AM ALL AROUND YOU, like a cocoon of Light. My Presence with you is a promise independent of your awareness of Me. Many things can block this awareness, but the major culprit is worry...Who is in charge of your life? If it is you, then you have good reason to worry.  But if it is I, then worry is both unnecessary and counterproductive... In this world you will have problems, but you need not lose sight of Me. --from June 7th devotion
Will this cancer destroy my sense of peace and my faith? No way! I believe in a God way bigger than any disease or any diagnosis.  And that faith is providing comfort right now.
"For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you." --Isaiah 41:13
Don's surgery is tomorrow around 1:15 PM (PDT).  Your prayers and positive thoughts during that time will bring great comfort.  Thank you.

6/24/11- ***Update.  Don went through the surgery very well and he is home already after only one night in the hospital.  Now we wait for the pathology reports.

7/5/11- ***Update.  Pathology report was great!  Cancer contained within the prostate.  All other tissue taken found no cancer cells.  No additional cancer treatment needed.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Top Ten Tuesday: Benefits of Blogging

Hosted by The Broke and Bookish
This week the Top Ten Tuesday explores the benefits of blogging. 

1.  Recommendations from me:  I started my blog as a way to communicate my book recommendations to the students at my school.  The web address for my blog is linked to my library home page and occasionally students will tell me that they selected a book that I reviewed on my blog.

2.  Recommendations from others:  I have made reading selections based on others' reviews on their blogs.  I have also shared with students excitement over books on the blogosphere if I haven't read them yet.

3.  Connection with other book lovers around the world.

4.  Critical thinking: As I read a book I am always thinking critically about how I will review the book and what else I need to know to enhance my review.  I earned a Science degree, so I have never taken an English Lit class in college. I am honing this skill.

5.  New friends: Mainly by making comments and responding to comments I feel a deep friendship developing with some other book bloggers.  When I first started out I asked my circle of friends and family to visit my blog.  Many visited once or not at all.  (My sister even had my blog blocked at her house!) I was crushed.  It was a blogging friend that helped me through this and invited me into a world of new friendships.

6.  Deepening commitment to bookish issues: book banning/censorship; reading the printed word; funding for libraries; death of bookstores.

7.  Organization: I've always kept book lists and annotated those lists, but now I feel more organized about those lists.

8.  Enjoyment:  I honestly adore blogging about books and bookish things.

*Note:  Please vote on my Sarah Dessen Poll. (Top, right hand side of home page.) I have never read any books by her and I want your advice as to the first of her books I should try.  Thanks.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Sh*t My Dad Says by Justin Halpern

In honor of Father's Day I decided to review the book, Sh*t My Dad Says by Justin Halpern, a book that my husband and I read together last year.

At the age of 28 Justin Halpern lost his job and had to move home to live with his parents. As an adult he started to view his Dad's pearls of wisdom for the humorous things they were. He started a Twitter page to share his father's witticism with his friends. The Twitter page, by the same name as the book, went viral in no time.  And it is no wonder.  The book is hilarious, and quite often, profane.  My husband and I would take turns reading the book aloud to each other and howling with laughter.

Here are a few of the cleaner quotes I found from the book:
ON A LEGO CREATION: "Listen, I don't want to stifle your creativity, but that thing you built there, it looks a pile of sh*t."
ON THE DEATH OF OUR FIRST DOG: "He was a good dog. Your brother is pretty broken up about it, so go easy on him. He had a nice last moment with Brownie before the vet tossed him in the garbage."
ON TELLING THE TRUTH:  "The worst thing you can be is a liar. . . . Okay, fine, yes, the worst thing you can be is a Nazi, but then number two is liar. Nazi one, liar two."
My dad's witty comments were never profane, but I think some of them are gems anyway.  So in honor of Father's Day here are a few quotes from my Dad:
EVERY TIME WE HAD PANCAKES OR WAFFLES: "Have you heard of the English lord Sir Rup?"
BAD TABLE MANNERS: "Anne, Anne, strong and able, get your elbows off the table." (This was sometimes accompanied by a poke in the wrist with the fork tines.)
IF HE WAS REALLY ANGRY: "Oh Fudge!"  or "Oh Fiddlesticks!"
IF I DIDN'T USE GOOD JUDGMENT: "If you think that, you have another think coming."

Ha-ha. Now I find myself repeating these to my kids.

Thanks, Dad, for sharing your wisdom and love with me.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Blogger Hop...Follow Friday...TGIF!

“How many books are currently in your To-Be-Read (TBR) Pile?”

Answer: I'm sure I have over 50 books here at home that I want to read, many I've had on"the pile" for years.  Also, I am a high school librarian with over 12,000 books in my collection.  Of those books, I would love to have the time to read over half of them, so theoretically I have over 6000 books on my pile, but would take me over 60 years to read at 100 books per year.  Ha! 


Follow Friday: Take a minute to check out other blogs and follow those that you find fun, exciting, interesting.  The featured blog this week is: Rhiannon Paille.  Congratulations.


Q. Genre Wars! What's your favorite genre and which book in that genre made it your favorite?

A.: I like edgy, realistic YA literature: My favorites in that genre are any books by John Green (Looking for Alaska and Paper Towns are my favorites); Going Bovine by Libba Bray; Tales of the Madman Underground by John Barnes; and Stolen by Lucy Christopher.


Hosted at GReads!

This Friday's Question:

And I Quote: What are some of your favorite book quotes?

I am a collector of quotes.  But this time instead of going into my book of favorites I am going to give you my favorites of the week.

"His lips parted into a timid smile, and our neighbor's image blurred with my sudden tears. 'Hey, Boo,' I said. " -To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
"The echo of her laughter is the second sunrise I awaken to each day, and at night I feel it is more than stars looking down on me." -Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli
"She opens her wings and takes me in. The song plays on and lights are so bright they seem to be alive. Dulcie parts her lips to kiss me and there's music. It's a note in an actave I've never heard before but I somehow know has always been there. A note of endings, of beginnings. A note you have to be ready to hear...She grins wide then. It's like the sky can't take anymore and it explodes, all particles and partner-particles and perhapsatrons, something new being born- a whole universe of yes and no and why the hell not?" -Going Bovine by Libba Bray

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Top Ten Aw.w.w Moments in Books

Broke and Bookish
Here are a few of my favorite awwww moments in literature. Those sweet moments that made me say "awww!"

1. When Scout meets Boo Radley for the very first time after he saved her life. (To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee)

2.  When Max Vandenburg and Liesel Meminger are reunited at the end of World War II. (The Book Thief by Markus Zusak)

3. The moment in the shed when the sun comes in the window and makes Ty's artwork come alive for Gemma. (Stolen by Lucy Christopher)

4.  Several moments with Enzo the dog in the novel, The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein.

5.  The moment when Harry sees his parents in the special Mirror of Erised and he realizes how much they loved him. (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by JK Rowling)

6.  The moment when Dulcie and Cameron find each other again at the end of the book. (Going Bovine by Libba Bray)

7.  The deep love between Old Dan and Little Anne, the coon dogs in Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls.

8.  When DJ Schwenk realizes that she can be friends with Brian while still loving herself and making her own way in the world.  (Front and Center, #3 in Dairy Queen series, by Catherine Gilbert Murdock)

9. After she returns home, Tiffany Aching recognizes her place in the world (Hat Full of Sky by Terry Pratchett)

10.  Leo finally realized how incredibly special Stargirl was. (Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli)

Monday, June 13, 2011

It's Monday and I'm reading...

Book Journey
It's Monday and I'm here to confess that I am barely reading anything right now.  As a high school librarian my job is principally about textbooks right now: checking in, fining, repairing, cleaning, and putting away textbooks. Today, on the average, we had five classes per period of high school students tromping through the library with their big, heavy, and sometimes scuffed-up books.  Ugh.  Exhausting work.  And a job that makes everyone grumpy.  Anyway, there's my excuse for barely reading anything this week.  But here's what I've been peeking at occasionally:

What I'm reading...
Beneath the Marble Sky by John Shors
I seriously have only read around ten pages of this one so I have no idea if this book is going to be good one.  It is about the emperor who built the Taj Mahal in tribute to his wife who died tragically.

What I'm listening to...
Border Songs by Jim Lynch
Set in Washington State on the Canadian Border this is by the author of Highest Tide, a book I really liked.  I haven't listened to enough of it to know if I'll like this one.

What I recently finished...
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot
Super-duper interesting non-fiction book about the woman (and her family) who inadvertently donated the cells (HELA) which have been used in all kinds of medical research.  If you have a tiny bit of interest in medical things, read this book!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

The Boy Who Couldn't Sleep and Never Had To by DC Pierson

Like any right-thinking teenager who has grown up on Star Wars and comic books, Darren knows that if there’s anything unique about you, men in suits and dark glasses will show up and take you away. This knowledge takes on a new immediacy when Darren discovers that his new best bud, Eric, has a strange, well, superpower: he literally never sleeps and never has to! The good news about this is that it gives Eric lots of time to think about TimeBlaze, the multiplatform sci-fi epic he and Darren are creating. The bad news is that what they imagine starts to become real, including, yes, a man in a suit and dark glasses! -Booklist

As you can tell from the summary, this book is very imaginative.  I would say it is a coming-of-age tale with a comic-book feel to it. Since I'm not really a comic-book type of gal I think some of those aspects were lost on me.  But I really do think that kids who enjoy video-gaming or super heroes will find lots to like in this book.

Both Darren and Eric are loners and they find each other through their mutual interest in creating TimeBlaze, cartoons full of super heroes.  Their friendship hits a speed bump over a girl but reconnects over a mutual enemy.

Will I recommend this book to my students?  Sure, but first I will make sure that they are mature readers as there are several references to illegal drug use and to sexual activity.  I also think that this book will appeal to a specific niche in the population.  But I will keep it on hand for just those kids. In the meantime, I'm going to let this book simmer a while in my brain.  I have a feeling it is one of those books that will stay with me for a while.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

My Favorite YA Novels of the 2010-11 School Year

The end of the 2010-11 school year looms. My professional life is completely swamped by textbooks, textbooks, textbooks. Evey night I come home completely exhausted so I haven't had much energy to read or blog. One more week then I begin my summer reading! In the meantime here is a list of my favorite YA novels that I read this school year:

1. Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
This book is zany, funny, and very memorable. Not to be missed.  This was my favorite book of the year by far.

2. A Hat Full of Sky by Terry Pratchett
I was completely immersed in the world created by Pratchett. Luckily I finally found this author. The book is both whimsical and funny.

3. Stolen by Lucy Christopher
This is my favorite Printz Award/Honor book of the year. It took my breath away.

4. Jane by April Lindner
This modern retelling of Jane Eyre rekindled an interest in the classic book for me.

5.Half Brother by Kenneth Oppel
I laughed, I cried.  This book made me think and question what it means to be human.

6. Scorch Trials by James Dashner
The exciting sequel to the Maze Runner.  Equal if not better than the first book.

7. Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly
Aside from the whiny teenager, I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I learned a ton  about the French Revolution.

8. Sledding Hill by Chris Crutcher
The topic is book banning and the author is Chris Crutcher.  Do I need to say more?

9. Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A.S. King
Another Printz honoree.  This one has all the gritty, angsty stuff I like in YA lit.

10. Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater
A romantic book between a girl and a werewolf. Sounds terrible, but it really is a touching, wonderful love story.

Honorable Mentions:  Dash and Lily's Book of Dares by Cohn and Levithan; Revolver by Sedgwick; Anna and the French Kiss by Perkins; Split by Avasthi; and Monsters of Men by Ness.

It was a school year of good books. I really had a hard time picking ten of my favorites.  If I made the list tomorrow I'd probably pick different books. This list does cover a wide range of reading genres and styles.  I purposely left nonfiction selections off the list though I read several very good books in that category this year.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Top Ten Favorite Book Settings

Broke and Bookish

I realized that a lot of YA books do not have strong or memorable settings. So I dug down in my memory to think of books which have fun, romantic, exotic, historic, or interesting settings. I am very fond of books where I learn something while I am enjoying the book. Here are my top "ten" favorite book settings:

1. Brideshead, the Marchmain Estate in England, complete with a huge house, a private chapel, and a beautiful garden described in Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh. A close second in the English estates category is Manderley the deWinter estate in the West Country found in Rebecca by Daphne duMaurier.

2.Heart of Gold Spaceship for its improbability computer and its chronically depressed robot found in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams. (It makes me smile to think of it!)

3. Oia on the Greek Island Santorini with its white washed houses and beautiful blue skies and sea as experienced by Lena, one of four friends in The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares.  This is about the most exotic that I can imagine.  I wish I could live in such a setting for a year or so.

4.  Botswana as seen through the eyes of Mma Romatswe in the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith. I also want to visit Scotland thanks to this author's other series.

5.  Australia, every single part of it!  I've wanted to visit it ever since I read In a Sunburned Country by Bill Bryson.

6.  Paris!  After reading Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins and Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly I am ready for another visit to the City of Love!

7. New York City with its book stores, museums, and Central Park. I love NYC but I want to see some of the spots described in Dash and Lily's Book of Dares by Cohen and Levithan.

8.  I can't help myself.  I want to visit live in Mr. Darcy's estate, Pemberley.  Can you imagine the decadence? Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen.

9.  Camelot with its knights in shining armor found in the Arthurian-tale, The Once and Future King by T.H. White.

10.  Narnia, of course!  Talking beast, dwarfs, kings and queens,  fauns and other magical beings.  I've read the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis so many times I feel like I belong in Narnia.

11.  Savannah, Georgia.  After read the book Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt I decided that I MUST visit this city, so different than where I live.

12.  There's no place like homeThe Body Finder by Kimberly Derting is set in Bonney Lake, Washington which is less than five miles from my home and The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein is set in Seattle.  The books have geographic references that I recognize and love.

Do you have any favorite settings that you discovered in books?

Saturday, June 4, 2011

The Books We Read Outdoors

NYT-June 3, 2011
Today I stumbled upon an editorial cartoon from the NY Times about the books we read outdoors. Check it out. I always thought that people read mindless, frivolous books when they were outside (Beach Books) even though that isn't what I read when I'm outside.

Take a look at the picture link here
then hurry on back and let me know what you like to read when you are outside enjoying the weather.

Today I'm spending a little time sitting in the sun for the first time of the season and I'm reading the book The Boy Who Couldn't Sleep and Never Had To by DC Pierson.  Why?  Because it is what I'm currently reading.  Ha!

Friday, June 3, 2011

First Line Friday 6/3/11

First Line Friday: How to participate: Share the first line (or two) of the book you are currently reading on your blog or in the comments. Include the title and the author so we know what you're reading. Then, if you would like, let us know what your first impressions were based on that first line, and let us know if you liked or did not like the sentence. The link-up will be at A Few More Pages every Friday.

The Boy Who Couldn't Sleep and Never Had To by DC Pierson
All the newspapers and TV pundits are calling this fall's freshman college class the 'Symnitol Generation,' but if the activity up and down my dorm hallway is any indication, this fall's freshman college class is the 'Stand Around Each Other's Laptops and Play The First Thirty Seconds Of Every Song On the Hard Drive Generation.'

I'm only a few chapters into the book but if this prologue is a peek into the future for what is in store for me in the rest of the book, I am looking forward to it.  I find this opening line quite funny.