"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=========

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Retrospective Wednesday...Hunger Games Audio Book

Retrospective Wednesday is a feature at My Head is Full of Books designed to give bloggers a chance to highlight a book that was published in previous years, in the hope that it will cause others to go back and read it. The featured book must have been published one or more years ago.

Before The Hunger Games movie hit the big screen, my daughters and I encouraged my husband to read the book. In an attempt to facilitate this, I requested the audiobook from the public library.  It arrived long after we saw the movie.  Ah well.  When I finally got the notice from the library that my hold was ready I considered letting it go, then thought I might enjoy a "reread" in the audio format. I was right.  I not only enjoyed it but so did my daughters. We listened to it with on a recent trip to Oregon and then sat in the family room for several additional hours and continued listening.

The experience was magical.  Not only because I had forgotten how wonderful this book really is, but I enjoyed sharing the listening experience with my daughters so much. Carolyn McCormick, the voice actor for the audio version of Hunger Games, is simply astonishing.  Her pacing, voices, and inflection help build the tension and the drama of each scene.  She created a very believable voice for Peta when he had the gravely throat from illness and dehydration, and, of course, her voice is now Katniss's voice to me.

I encourage you to try an audiobook of one of your favorite books and see if it doesn't make you fall in love with the book all over again.  The audiobook of the Hunger Games, published in 2008, would be a wonderful place to start.

What audiobooks have you enjoyed and recommend?


 -Anne

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Top Ten Books I Hope are Still Read in 30 years

Ten Books Published in the last ten years that I hope will still be read for the next 30.

1.  The Harry Potter Series by JK Rowling...I know the first books in this series were published over ten years ago but the last ones qualify.  I hope that kids and adults alike still find these books magical.

2.  Looking for Alaska by John Green (2005)...This was John's first novel and it is still one of my favorite YA books.  Will young adults still be able to relate to it, as they do Catcher in the Rye, in 30 years? I hope so.

3.  The Help by Kathryn Stockett (2009)...historical fiction as good as this one should continue to be popular in years to come.

4.  The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian by Sherman Alexie (2007)...It is pretty hard to imagine most YA fiction standing the test of time.  This one deserves to be one that does.

5. The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins (2008)...Remember being blown away by the first book in this series when you read it? Let's hope that is continues to delight generations to come.

6. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak (2007)... I know that the horrors of the Holocaust and WWII will still be with us in 30 years.  This book is so well-written, it deserves to be a "classic."

I am having a harder time than I thought creating this list.  Let me sleep on it and I'll add to the list.


 

Monday, May 28, 2012

Review: Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews




 Me and Earl and the Dying Girl is a marvelous debut YA novel by Jesse Andrews. His antihero, Greg, sets out to write this book to explain why he is doing so poorly in school.  Along the way we are introduced to his film-making partner, Earl, and to Rachel, who has leukemia. Greg's mother asks him to visit Rachel, to cheer her up, after the cancer diagnosis and thus begins the unlikely friendship between Greg, Earl, and the dying girl, Rachel.

For obvious reasons this book has received a lot of comparisons to John Green's book, The Fault in Our Stars, which was also published this year. Though the theme is similar---teenager(s) with cancer---they really are vastly different stories with very different writing styles and approaches. Greg, the narrator and writer of this "book" uses a variety of writing styles.  Sometimes he writes dialogue in script form, word for word as if we are reading a play.  Other times he makes bulleted lists. My favorite was when he tried to sum up his life in headlines. He says---
"This book is probably making my life seem more interesting and eventful than it actually is. Books always try to do that. If you just had headlines from every single day of my life you would get a better sense of how boring and random it is."
In this book Greg and Earl are pretty typical teen boys, trying to fly below the radar at school but who enjoy making films in their spare time.  Their films are so bad they never show them to anyone, but they do enjoy making them. They often fight and bicker.  When the boys interact they often use very crass language.  So much so that I found myself cringing more than once. I know I am an adult but I couldn't help thinking that the language may keep us from selecting this book for our Mock Printz event.  Drats!  I really enjoyed this book and found it to be both humorous and poignant.




Sunday, May 27, 2012

Sunday Salon...May 27

Weather today... Overcast, cool, and rainy. Sun breaks in the afternoon. 

Yesterday we had another bridal shower for Rita.  This one was for family and was held in the Portland area.  It was a lovely day.  The photo is of the bride-to-be, her sister (behind), and cousins. 


Today we went to a Mariners Game in Seattle.  They lost but we had a grand time.

I'm reading:  
  • Me and Earl, and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews. See the opening paragraph on my Book Beginnings post from Friday.  So far this book is quite funny, in a teenager male sort of way. I've had a very busy week so I didn't get a lot more read this week.
  • Sabriel by Garth Nix.  One of my colleagues always raves about this book and the series.  Time to figure what all the fuss is about.
  • Iron King by Julie Kagawa.  I know.  I know.  I am taking way too long on this book. I need to finish it this weekend or abandon it.
 
I'm listening to: 
  • The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.  This is the second time listening to this audiobook.  Love it! 
  • The Miles Between by Mary Pearson. I have a funny feeling that this is one of those audiobooks that is not as good as the actual book.  I'll finish it but don't care for the book or, more likely, the format.


Book finished this week:  The Running Dream by Wendelin Van Draanen. Winner of the Schneider Family Book Award for people living with a disability.  It is a new favorite.   

Scripture lesson in church: Matt 28: 19, 20  "19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

I'm praying for: A situation at church which involves some hard feelings and poor communication. Also, a friend's husband who is doing poorly with cancer.

Around the house: the librarians from the district will be here Tuesday.  Must get the house ready to "show."

From the kitchen: Birthday dinner for daughter #1 of steak, baked potatoes, broccoli and Corina's cake for dessert. Our family birthdays are done until December.


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Review: The Running Dream by Wendelin Van Draanen

The Running Dream by Wendelin Van Draanen is about a girl, Jessica, who is a runner.  She loves running. Her identity is wrapped up in running. When a tragic accident occurs just hours after she sets a school record in the 400 meter race and her leg is amputated just below the knee she thinks her life is over, or at least not worth living. But with the help of a really skilled doctor, good friends, and devoted teammates, Jessica is able to pull her life together and she actually finds a new way to run and a new appreciation for people living with disabilities.

I really, really like The Running Dream.  I expected it to be good since it won the Schneider Family Book Award given each year to a YA book that does an exemplary job describing life with a disability, but I didn't think it would be good good.  It is!

What was it that I liked so much?  First, the book does do an exemplary job at describing life with a disability, in this case being a single amputee.  As Jessica was going through the process of being fitted for her prosthesis I could picture what she was going through and what the doctor was doing.  The writing was clear, precise, and descriptive. I even thought to myself that this would be an excellent book to put in the hands of soldiers returning from Afghanistan/Iraq who have lost a limb because the writing is so clear and helpful.

Secondly, our main character learns so much about herself through her disability.  She makes a new friend, Rosa, that she never would have met before the accident.  Rosa was born with Cerebral Palsy and is confined to a wheelchair.  Rosa is a math whiz but longs for the freedom of running.  She is wise beyond her 15 years and it is her encouragement that helps Jessica see that disabilities need not be limitations. In addition, Jessica's team steps up to not only inspire her but to actually help Jessica toward her goal of getting a running prosthesis. Everything is not always rosy for Jessica, but things do get better.  Here is a favorite quote about this:
"It's still disturbing how fast weeds take root in my garden of worthiness." (p.314)

This book REALLY inspired me.  In fact, I have used a few of the examples within the book with my advisees this week as they struggle to put all the pieces together at the end of their senior year in high school in order to graduate. I doubt that the book will every be considered "popular" in the library but I will know where it is and will be able to get it into the hands of those students who really need it.

BTW- I listened to this book on audiobooks.  I want to give Laura Flanagan, the narrator, a shout-out! She did an amazing job.  I thought she especially did a good job with Rosa's voice.  Since Rosa has cerebral palsy her voice or diction are not always super clear and that is part of the storyline.  Ms. Flanagan got her voice spot on!

 

Monday, May 21, 2012

It's Monday, May 22 and I'm reading...

Jen and Kellee at Teach Mentor Text
Sheila at Book Journey













What I am currently reading: 
1. Me and Earl, and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews- this book is getting some attention because of the similar theme, cancer, to The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. It is funny and quirky but I am enjoying it.

2. The Iron King by Julie Kagawa-This is the first book in the Iron Fey series which is hot, hot, hot in my library.  I am reading it to evaluate if I want to include it in my Nifty Fifty cart of special books.  So far so good but I'm only on the 8th chapter. I keep pushing it off to the side for other books.

3. The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey- This is my book club selection for the month.  I must bear down to finish this book by Wednesday afternoon.  I'm a little over half way finished. So far I find the writing captivating.


What I am listening to:
-The Running Dream by Wendolin Van Draanen- winner of the Schneider Family Book Award for books that deal with the realities of living with a disability.  I am quite impressed.

What I've recently finished:
1.  Shanghai Girls by Lisa See. This book is a winner.  About the lives of two sisters who were beautiful girls in China before WWII and now live in the USA.

2. The Obsidian Blade by Pete Hautman. The first book in the Klaatu Trilogy.  I had a very hard making any traction on this book.  I did enjoy the surprises toward the end of the book, many were twists I wasn't expecting.

What I hope to read next: 
I still have one library book next to my bed and several audiobooks that are calling out to me:
 -Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi. "When Aria, a sheltered and fragile Dweller, is exiled from her home in Reverie, she must face The Death Shop, a land filled with cannibals and dangerous energy storms, and her only hope for staying alive depends on Outsider Perry, a savage hunter" Sounds ominous, doesn't it?

-The Hunger Games (Audiobook)- I've read the book now I thought I'd have a listen.

-Lockdown: Escape from the Furnace #1 by Alexander Gordon Smith- A popular choice in my library with boys.


Sunday, May 20, 2012

Sunday Salon...May 20th

We did NOT see an eclipse today because the weather was so overcast, though we may be too far North to have seen it anyway.
Weather today... Overcast and rainy. We couldn't see the eclipse at all.

I'm reading: Me and Earl, and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews. See the opening paragraph on my Book Beginnings post from Friday.  So far this book is quite funny, in a teenager male sort of way.
 
I'm listening to: The Running Dream by Wendelin Van Draanen. Winner of the Schneider Family Book Award for people living with a disability.  It is quite enjoyable in the audio format.

Book finished this week:  
  • Shanghai Girls by Lisa See.
  • The Obsidian Blade by Pete Hautman
Scripture lesson in church: Acts 1:7 He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority."

I'm praying for: A student who is having some depression related issues and for my ability to talk to her compassionately.

Our backyard is so lovely in the Spring
Around the house: More flowers in the yard. The wisteria is blooming.  The yard is so lovely right now.

From the kitchen: Birthday dinner for my husband was a hit: BBQ steak, foil-wrapped potatoes, stir fried mushrooms, zucchini, and onions,  lava cake for dessert.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Book Beginnings...May 18th

First Line Friday is now Book Beginnings hosted over at Rose City Reader.

I haven't "played" for a while but I thought the opening lines of this book were too good not to share.  Beware.  Boy humor ahead.


"So to understand everything that happened, you have to start with the premise that high school sucks. Do you accept that premise? Of course you do. It is a universally acknowledged truth that high school sucks. In fact, high school is where we are first introduced to the basic existential question of life: How is it possible to exist in a place that sucks so bad?"
          -opening paragraph, Chapter 1, Me and Earl, and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews.

 I work at a high school.  I've worked at a high school for the past 28 years. I went to high school.  I'm still in recovery from those years in high school.  This opening makes me laugh at the truth behind it and the play on the famous Jane Austen line: "It is a truth universally acknowledged that a man...:"  I am prepared to love this book.


 

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Retrospective Wednesday...God Went to Beauty School

Retrospective Wednesday is a feature at My Head is Full of Books designed to give bloggers a chance to highlight a book that was published in previous years, in the hope that it will cause others to go back and read it. The featured book must have been published one or more years ago. 


What if God was able to experience everything from a human point of view?  Would he get a dog? Climb a mountain? Watch TV?  What would amaze him the most about our world? Hands? Elephants? Riding in a boat?
"God Went to Beauty School" celebrates the simple things in life while taking a long, hard look at what it means to be human. Rylant's soft, reflective, and often humorous verse glimpses everyday life through wide and wondering eyes and blends the familiar with the profoundly spiritual. -from Goodreads
Each and every poem causes me to stop, to reflect, to smile, or to cry.  I love this little book. I love the idea of God experiencing life on earth as a human, which relates to me and my experiences. Published in 2003 this book is timeless and is a go-to-book when I need a little pick-me-up.  Here are a few lines just to get you started:

GOD WENT TO INDIA
To see the elephants.
God adores elephants.
He thinks they are
the best thing
He ever made.
They do everything
He hoped for:
They love their children,
they don't kill,
they mourn their dead.
This last thing is important
to God...
_______________________
GOD CLIMBED A MOUNTAIN
...it was so still.
"Should've put everybody
on top of Mount Everest,"
God thought.
Nobody'd want to hit
the guy next to him
on top of Mount Everest.
"Next time," thought God.
Next time.

 

Monday, May 14, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday...May 15th

I am opting for Free-choice this week.

Top Ten Circulating Books in my library in the past month. ("Not required" books only.)

1. A Bride Story, 1. by Kaoru Mori. A very popular new graphic novel set in my library has cause quite a stir. "A twenty-year-old woman from a nomadic tribe in Central Asia, is sent to marry Karluk Eihon, a boy eight years younger than she is."
2. A Bride Story, 2. by Kaoru Mori. Readers bring back #1 and instantly check out #2. "When her clan decides she should be married to another man and come to bring her home, Amir is forced to fight to retain the life that she has built with her husband and his people."
3. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins. The Hunger Games movie has been good for library business as the sequels are very popular again right now
4. Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers. I've only had this book a month and all its readers are crazy for it. "Ismae avoids an arranged marriage by making a place for herself at the convent of St. Martin, where she learns of her unique gifts and must determine whether she will serve as a handmaiden to Death"
5. I Am the Messenger by Markus Zusak. This is one of my favorite books so I recommend it often, especially this time of year to boys nearing graduation.
6. The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness. I am always delighted when students start in this series.  I think it is so exciting and imaginative.
7. The Maze Runner by James Dashner. If you are a Hunger Games fan and haven't read this book, this series, you are really missing a thrilling ride.
8. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins. I love it that these books are still popular.
9. Raised by Wolves by Jennifer Barnes. "A girl raised by werewolves must face the horrors of her past to uncover the dark secrets that the pack has worked so hard to hide." This book has come out of nowhere and is gaining in popularity daily. The third book in the series is coming out soon. 
10. The Scorch Trials by James Dashner. This is the 2nd book of the Maze Runner series, and I think I like it best.
Books 5-10 are tied for the same number of circulations this past month.

 

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Sunday Salon...Mother's Day!

A few of the plants and flowers we will be putting into containers today.
Happy Mother's Day.  My husband takes me to my favorite nursery every year for Mother's Day and we buy plants for all our deck containers and pots.  Then he helps me fill them when we get home. The pictures are some of the flowers we bought.  Today, after church, we go to work planting them.

Remodeling Update:  we got all but two of our boxes unpacked. I put up decorations and pictures. It feels like our home again.


Weather today... Sunny and warm. It is supposed to be a lovely day in the Pac NW. I think I'll request a quick spin in the convertible for a Mother's Day gift.

I'm still reading: The Obsidian Blade by Pete Hautman. Book One of the Klaatu Diskos trilogy. About his work Hautman says, "I've been thinking about this trilogy my whole life. when I was a teen, this is what I wanted to read---sci-fi, adventure, the past, the future, and a mind-bending mystery all in one." -from the book jacket
 
I'm listening to: Shanghai Girls by Lisa See. I am entranced by the reading of this audiobook. This is next month's book club selection.

Book finished this week:  All my completed books this week were quick reads that I found when I was moving around my library.
  • Casey at the Bat by Ernest Thayer, illustrated by Joe Morse
  • Remember: The Journey to School Integration by Toni Morrison.
  • God Went to Beauty School by Cynthia Rylant.
Scripture lesson in church: Micah 6:8 "He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
    And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy
    and to walk humbly with your God."

I'm praying for: Gary, who has a lung infection that has kept him unwell for months.

Around the house: Planting flowers in my containers and pots on my deck and driveway.

From the kitchen: Apple pancakes for breakfast Saturday.

Memorable event of the week: Dinner out with friends last night. We laughed and talked for hours.

A favorite quote this week: "A mother is not a person to lean on, but a person to make leaning unnecessary." ---Dorothy Canfield Fisher


 

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Libraries 101..Sorry Dewey


Several years ago, when my daughters were young, we went to the public library to look for American Girls books.  Each of the girls had an American Girl doll and they enjoyed reading the books about their particular doll. Each doll had a set of six books written about them. At the library I had to use the card catalog to locate each of the six books which were located throughout the Junior fiction section because the books were written by different authors.  The children's librarian on duty didn't have any pity on us because they had a strict policy of shelving books correctly according to the Dewey Decimal system. They also had rules about shelving fiction according to the author of the book. She understood that it was a hassle and confusing, but the kids should learn to navigate the catalog to locate the books they want.

That lesson really stuck in my craw.  Shouldn't we think about patrons when we organize our libraries? Years later when I went to school to become a librarian and then got my own library, I was confronted with the same issue. It took me several years but I finally decided that patrons ease of use was more important that rules set up by Dewey years ago.

The issue came to the forefront when I had several classes in the library doing project on immigration.  My books on the subject were located in both the 300s (social issues) and the 973s (US History). I spent my whole day running back and forth, finally pulling all the books and placing them side by side on the top of a shelf making them more accessible for everyone. When the classes were finished with their projects I shelved the books in their proper locations in the 300s and 900s. A few days later kids, who hadn't finished the project on time, started trickling in wanting to locate the books they needed.  Once again I spent several days running back and forth between the two sections before I decided that Dewey was not going to send out the library police if I re-cataloged the books and put them together in one spot. Now I can walk kids and teachers and point to one location for all the immigration books.

All my immigration books in one spot in the library.

In order to do this I had to recatolog the whole lot.  I found a section of the 300s between 312 and 318 where I had no books at all.  I assigned new dewey numbers to everything so that I could
get country books next to each other, too. Admittedly it took a bit of time and effort but it was worth it.

Since then I have done the same thing with the drug books, assigning all of them 362.29 numbers even if the assigned Dewey number meant the book should have been shelved with health issues in the 600s. I decided it made more sense to batch them all together in one spot.  Kids don't care if books in 362.29 should be books about scoial issues related to drug use and the ones in the 600s are more about the health issues related to use.  They just know that they can walk to one spot to see if I have what they are looking for.

Even the fiction section of the library has received my scrutiny.  First, I took all the books by Orca Book Publishing and put them together in one spot.  These books are geared toward reluctant readers and are designed to be high interest but low reading levels.  I talked to the Special Education teachers and they all agreed that it would work best if we just called these books Orca Books (rather than Hi-Low Books) and they should be placed together somewhere for easy assess. I even put ORCA instead of FIC (short for fiction) on the spine label so that my TAs would know where to shelf them. This has been a huge success.  The SPED teachers send kids up from their classrooms to get another ORCA book. The kids all know exactly where they are and don't require my help in locating them.  By the way, I am a huge fan of Orca books.  If you aren't familiar with this publishing company check them out. (Orca Book Publishing.)

Books about Halo all shelved together by title, not author.

Secondly, I took all of the Halo books that are so popular with boys that are in the XBox game and placed them in one spot, re-cataloging them as FIC HAL (for the title, not the author.) I decided to do this to undo the frustration over the American Girls book at the public library. I'm sure that the authors of the various books don't care where I put the books in my library, just that kids still want to read their books.

This summer I hope to tackle another issue...biographies verses subject matter. But that is a blog for another day.

I hope Dewey doesn't mind.

What frustrates you when you go looking for books on a topic at a library? If you are a librarian, have you done any similar fixes?  Please share your thoughts and ideas.


 

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Review: Rotters by Daniel Kraus

Rotters by Daniel Kraus recently won the 2012 Odyssey Award for its outstanding audiobook. I challenged myself to read or listen to all of the ALA YA book award winners this year and felt that I should listen rather than read this book since that is the format that earned the book its award.  Kirby Heybourne indeed do a masterful job reading this macabre and gruesome book. He used different voices for different people and his pacing and timing were excellent.  The only problem was that no matter how good a job Mr. Heyborne did with the narration, the story was still macabre and gruesome.

The story is told in the voice of Joey Crouch who has to move to Iowa to live with a father he has never met after the accidental death of his mother. At first his father is distant and elusive but soon Joey learns what his father does.  He is a grave robber. Even though he is repelled by this gruesome and horrifying activity Joey soon finds himself going along with his father and becoming a grave robber himself.


Even as I write this short summary of the book I marvel that I even finished listening to this whole book...hours upon hours of listening to it.  I am not a person who likes horror genre books and usually only accept gruesome topics if they are attached to a nonfiction book, so it is pretty amazing that I made it through this one to the end.  I must admit that there were some pretty exciting scenes that had me on the edge of my seat but mostly I had my hand over my mouth in horror of the thought of digging up corpses and relieving them of their treasures.  Yuck. Yuck. Yuck.

While listening one thought went through  my head repeatedly, what kind of research did Daniel Kraus do to be able to describe the contents of coffins and the decomposing bodies with as much detail as he used?  He obviously had done a lot of research.  I sure hope it was from books.  That's all I'll say on that subject!  Ha!

The book while quite well written did not appeal to me, obviously, but it may be just the thing for the student or adult who enjoys a twisted, macabre tale. Fans of Edgar Allan Poe may really relish this one.




Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Retrospective Wednesday...The Power of One

Retrospective Wednesday is a feature at My Head is Full of Books designed to give bloggers a chance to highlight a book that was published in previous years, in the hope that it will cause others to go back and read it. The featured book must have been published one or more years ago.  Please leave a comment and link back to Headfullofbooks from your blog post. Join in the fun highlighting favorite "old books."

 This week I am featuring a retrospective look at the book The Power of One by Bryce Courtenay, which was published in 1989. It is set in South Africa during the 1930s and 1940s, young Peekay dreams of becoming the welterweight boxing champion of the world. Born into a world divided by racism and hatred and on the brink of war, Peekay must triumph over injustice and does so in a spectacular way. His whole life is about the power of one, the power we have to rise above our circumstances and make a better world for ourselves and others.

Just this week a young man returned this book to the library.  When he handed it too me, I clutched the book to my chest and said, "oh, this book is so good, so powerful." The young man, who isn't a big reader, looked me right in the eyes and said, "This book is a life-changer. I am a different person now that I have read this book." I kid you not, he really said that.  A high school boy said that a book changed his life. And not just any book, but The Power of One, which isn't just a good book, but it is a "clutch-it-to-your-chest" good book. A book that speaks to power that we each have within us.

Trust me on this one.  If you haven't read it, do!  If you are a high school or public librarian and you don't have this book in your collection, get it.  It won't fly off the shelf.  But every year or so someone will discover it and it will be a life-changer for them.  It is worth the expense, I promise.




Monday, May 7, 2012

Top Ten Quotes (Reprise)

The Broke and Bookish
 These are some of my favorite quotes.  
I reprised this list from one I made a few years ago.
1. "That's what I love about reading: one tiny thing will interest you in a book, and that tiny thing will lead you onto another book, and another bit there will lead you onto a third book. It's geometrically progressive- all with no end in sight, and for no other reason than sheer enjoyment." 
---The Guernsey Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrons, pgs 11-12.

2. "When I visit the back corners of my life again after so long a time, littlest things jump out first." "Even when it stands vacant the past is never empty." 
---Whistling Season by Ivan Doig, pages 1 and 344.

3. "I'm skimming across the surface of my own history, moving fast, riding the melt beneath the blades, doing loops and spins, and when I take a high leap into the dark and come down thirty years later, I realize it is as Tim trying to save Timmy's life with a story." 
---The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien, pg. 246.

4. "Remembering is a word I use for praying. Sometimes it's like waiting for music to come out of silence." 
---Marcelo in the Real World by Francisco X. Stork, pg. 147.

5. "...even after fifty years it retains its aura of brimstone and taboo...what people remember isn't the book itself, so much as the furor. Ministers in church denounced it as obscene...the library was forced to remove it from the shelves...There's nothing like a shovelful of dirt to encourage literacy." 
 ---The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood, p. 39.

6. "The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid." 
---Henry Tilney in Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen.

7. "...until Ammu shook her and told her to stoppit and she stoppited. Around them the hustling-jostling crowd. Scurrying hurrying buying selling luggage trundling porter paying children shitting people spitting coming going begging." 
---The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy.

8. "Once upon a time there was a boy who loved a girl, and her laughter was a question he wanted to spend his whole life answering." 
---The History of Love by Nicole Krauss, pg. 11.

9. "His question caught her off-guard, and she didn't know what to do with it. The part of her that was open to the universe was facing in another direction just then." 
---Criss Cross by Lynne Rae Perkins, p. 327.

10. "Shall we go to Bethlehem, boys, or shall we dance?"
 ---The Shepherd, the Angel, and Walter the Christmas Miracle Dog by Dave Barry.

11. "I try to fend off the oceanic sadness, but I can't. It's such a colossal effort not to be haunted by what is lost, but to be enchanted by what was." 
---The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson, p.275.
12. "We went to the moon to have fun, but the moon turned out to totally suck." 
---Feed by M.T. Anderson, p. 1.

 13. "You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope." ---Captain Wentworth in Persuasion by Jane Austen                                                                        


 

It's Monday, May 7th, and I'm reading...

Sheila at Book Journey
Jen and Kellee at Teach Mentor Text














What I am currently reading and my progress:
1.  The Obsidian Blade by Pete Hautman- Pete describes this as part sci-fi, part adventure, part historical, part futuristic. The reviews are coming in as this is a good one.  I hope I will concur. I've barely started it,  I'm only on around page 35.

2. The Iron King by Julie Kagawa-This is the first book in the Iron Fey series which is hot, hot, hot in my library.  I am reading it to evaluate if I want to include it in my Nifty Fifty cart of special books.  So far so good but I'm only on the 2nd chapter.


What I am listening to:
-The Shanghai Girls by Lisa See, read by Janet Song. I am mesmerized.

What I've recently finished:
1.  Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzgerald I half listened, half read this book at break neck speed. A paranormal romance that had me on the edge of my seat.

2. Soldier Bear by Bib Tak.  Translated from Dutch, this book won the 2012 Batchelor Award for translated works. It is a Junior book and it really wasn't a favorite.

3. Love and Leftovers by Sarah Tregay. Written in verse, this coming-of-age story has a lot going for it.


What I hope to read next:
I have three library books piled up next to my bed and i want to read them before I have to return them:
-The Disenchantments by Nina LaCour. I read a not-so-great review after reading a few good ones which has caused me to pause.  Hmm.m.m.
-Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi. "When Aria, a sheltered and fragile Dweller, is exiled from her home in Reverie, she must face The Death Shop, a land filled with cannibals and dangerous energy storms, and her only hope for staying alive depends on Outsider Perry, a savage hunter" Sounds ominous, doesn't it?
-The Running Dream by Wendelin Van Draanen. This is my next audiobook.
-The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey. This is my next book club selection and I must pick it up from Margaret G-F as I am only 31st in line at the public library.  Ha!

What are you reading and how do you like it?

 

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Sunday Salon...May 6th

Remodeling Update:  All the contractors have finished with us now we are left alone to finish up painting and reorganizing our "stuff" and furniture. Just a few touches of paint here and there and we will be done today and we can hang the curtains and pictures and make our home homey again.

Weather today... Sunny and warm. It is supposed to be a lovely day in the Pac NW.

I'm reading: The Obsidian Blade by Pete Hautman. Book One of the Klaatu Diskos trilogy. About his work Hautman says, "I've been thinking about this trilogy my whole life. when I was a teen, this is what I wanted to read---sci-fi, adventure, the past, the future, and a mind-bending mystery all in one." -from the book jacket

 
I'm listening to: Nothing, but I will start Shanghai Girls by Lisa See today on the return trip from Seattle after dropping off my daughter back at college. This is next month's book club selection.

Book finished this week:  
  • Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick. A paranormal romance.  I usually try to avoid this genre of book but this book had me by the throat and I HAD to read it and read it fast!  I now know why it is so popular in my library right now.
  • Soldier Bear by Bib Tak. This won the Batchelor Award in 2012, an award given to books translated into English. This book was originally written in Dutch. I read this as part of my challenge to read all the ALA Award winners for 2012.
  • Love and Leftovers by Sarah Tregay. A coming-of-age story written in verse. A quick, yet surprisingly deep story.
Scripture lesson in church: John 13:12-14 12 When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. 13 “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’and rightly so, for that is what I am. 14 Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash each other's feet.

I'm praying for: For loving patience.

Around the house: Painting.

From the kitchen: Parmesan Chicken that was divine.

Memorable event of the week: Doing wedding-related things with my daughters.

A favorite quote this week: "Reading that book was a little like eating an undercooked brownie. It was completely gooey." - my student, Melia W. answer when asked if she liked the book The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight.