Saturday, October 25, 2008

Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

What wonderful mouthful!  I love the title of this book - The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows.  I thought the book was good - it is a series of letters written to and from the main character, Juliet as she writes a book about World War Two.  The Guernsey Literary Club finds out about Juliet and begins to write her letters - which eventually leads her to even go visit the island of Guernsey to learn even more about the war times.  While there, Juliet's life changes from what she thought was "normal" and becomes something she even loves more!  You learn a lot about Juliet and her romances, the people of Guernsey, and people from her life back home.  I thought it was a good book - maybe slow at times, but overall a good read.

Another good review HERE.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

A Thousand Splendid Suns

Khaled Hosseini's A Thousand Splendid Suns was, in my opinion, riveting. I enjoyed The Kite Runner, but this one was even more of a page-turner for me. The treatment of women in those countries still makes me cringe. I love it that you follow two story lines - two lives and how they intertwine to create one, very moving story. These are two women from very different life situations, even different generations, that become bonded in a unique way. This was a book that rarely made me laugh, but often made me cry - but sometimes we need that too - to be awakened to how people are treated in other parts of the world. I would HIGHLY recommend this one!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


I just finished Nancy Werlin's Impossible.  I liked it, didn't have any trouble WANTING to read it, but now that I am trying to tell others what it's about - I am sitting back and saying to myself, "Oh, I really liked that???"  Yes, it's not my typical storyline - but I did enjoy it.  Is it different??  YES, VERY!!  Lucy is trapped in a family curse that has been with these women for generations - it is up to her to try to break this curse after all of these years OR become a mother and go crazy (literally).  It is truly unlike any book I have read before, and I am not usually a fan of fantasy/magic, etc. but this one really grabbed me.  Good read, now I'll sit back and watch which honors it receives.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Kane Miller at its Best!!

One of my favorite publishers of all times???? It has to be Kane Miller - They are marvelous at representing multicultural literature and this box is no exception.

New Clothes for New Year's Day by Hyun-Joo Bae is first of all, BEAUTIFUL!! The illustrations are wonderful and give the feel beautifully for this New Year holiday - Korean style. Totally endearing - one that is already on my daughter's shelf!

Who's Hiding by Satoru Onishi. I LOVE this one!! It is very fun and you could use it with younger children. Each 2 pg. spread asks you to find an animal - one who is ..... hiding, crying, etc. VERY FUN!

My Father's Shop by Satomi Ichikawa - this is a fun story. It takes place in this boy's father's shop - all because he has a rooster that everyone wants to see! I love this because you can see how to make rooster sounds in ALL different languages. Very fun!

Here's a fun one! What happens when a rabbit escapes out of his cage and has the WHOLE house to himself?!?! While We Were Out by Ho Baek Lee is just that story - very cute and perfect for toddler storytime as well.

Guji Guji by Chih-Yuan Chen is a WONDERFUL tale about a brilliant crocodile that hatches in a nest of ducks!! I am telling you - this one is hilarious AND fun!! Don't miss it!

Singing to the Sun by Vivian French and illustrated by Jackie Morris. This is a gorgeous fairy tale - and I mean gorgeous. It is thought-provoking tale of Thorfinn and his process to choose a bride.

Cat by Mike Dumbleton and illustrated by Craig Smith is simple yet profound! I love this one!! Cat meets up with all sorts of wonderful adventures. My favorite?? See what happens when she meets the sprinkler!

I am telling you - you just can't go wrong with Kane Miller!

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Lerner Box

Christmas is for me:  A BIG BOX OF BOOKS!!  So, when Lerner sent through some review copies - I was excited - ok, giddy!!  Let me share some of my favorites:

Angel Girl by Laurie Friedman and illustrated by Ofra Amit.  There is a reason this one is first - as I'm dabbing at my eyes with a kleenex - this is POWERFUL!!  A wonderful Holocaust picture book - the story is precious - incredible - and one you won't soon forget!  (Oh, and it's based on a true story!)
Class Three at Sea by Julia Jarman and illustrated by Lynne Chapman is a fun romp!  I mean really, what would you expect from a book where a class gets lost at sea, only to be "found" by a group of rowdy pirates?  (Perfect for your "pirate" story hours!)
I Know an Old Teacher by Anne Bowen and illustrated Stephen Gammell - this one is another fun one.  I know, there are SO many "I Know An..."  books out there but this one is fun and deserves to be among them!
Hush Harbor:  Praying in Secret by Freddi Williams Evans and illustrated by Erin Bennett Banks.  I DO SO ENJOY these historical picture books.  It is pure reading for enjoyment while learning something that WILL stick!  This is a book on what African Americans had to go through to even worship together during times of slavery.  Another book based on true events - powerful!
Name that Style:  All About Isms in Art - Bob Raczka.  This caught my eye as I am getting ready for next year's Summer Reading Program (all about Fine Arts).  This is really a useful book - for anyone studying/learning about art and the periods of art - it is concise and yet interesting - a great tool for students and teachers!
Ok - here's one that you MUST admit you needed in school - "Mrs. Riley Bought Five Itchy Aardvarks" and Other Painless Tricks for Memorizing Science Facts by Brian P. Cleary and illustrated by J. P. Sandy.  First off - it's Brian Cleary - need I say more!!?  Ok, since you need more convincing - I mean really, how else can you memorize the six major animal groups??  (Hence, the title!!)

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Seven Miles to Freedom

Janet Halfmann's Seven Miles to Freedom: The Robert Smalls Story is a powerful slave story. I was not familiar at all with Robert Smalls but now that I've read this book - I am SURE to recommend it to others studying slavery or just interested in reading on the Civil War/Slavery, etc. Duane Smith's illustrations are marvelous - they give you a rugged feel for the times. The powerful picture book tells an amazing story - I would read this to students WAY up even into middle school - it will be long-remembered.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Chloe's Favorites

Since Chloe is my greatest critic - I am featuring her two latest favorites!
Princess Peepers by Pam Calvert and illustrated by Tuesday Mourning is hysterical - in my opinion - in Chloes??  Well - she just LOVES anything princess but this princess is EVEN better - she wears - GLASSES!!  Yes, and the ending is my favorite - after others make fun of her because she can't see AND because she needs glasses - guess who falls in love with her??  You got it - the prince with glasses!  You can't do better than Princess Peepers!
Next Up???  It's Tickle Monster by Josie Bissett and illustrated by Kevan Atteberry.  This book is perfect to enjoy with your little one.  Want or Need an excuse to tickle??  Then here it is!  This tickle monster spends his whole life tickling, and not only is her adorable (hint, hint stuffed animal companies!!) but who wouldn't want to be tickled by him?  He leads you through a tickle adventure.  This is an adventure that will leave you BOTH laughing - don't miss it!!

Search This Blog