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Showing posts from May, 2011

One World, Many Stories

Summer reading programs are kicking off soon at the libraries where I work, and this year's theme is "One World, Many Stories."

As I've mentioned before, I believe multicultural stories aren't just for people of color and I love that so many kids will have the opportunity to learn about the big, beautiful world we all share.

Here's a short list of books about people from the four corners the world, including right here in the USA.

Picture Books

Angel City by Tony Johnston, illustrated by Carole Byard
An African-American man adopts a Latino boy and when tragedy strikes this unlikely family, love is what keeps them going. Not for younger readers, but older children can appreciate the book’s message of tolerance and compassion.

D Is for Dragon Dance by Ying Chang Compestine, illustrated by YongSheng Xuan
Vibrant illustrations celebrate the traditions of Chinese New Year one letter at a time.

Pablo Neruda: Poet of the People by Monica Brown, illustrated by Julie Paschkis

Entwined Book Review

Author: Heather Dixon
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Publication Date: March 29, 2011
ISBN-13: 9780062001030
480 pp.

Reading copy from local library

There's romance and then there's Romance. Lower case "r" romance is what most people think of when they think of the word, which is pretty much anything the new Old Spice guy offers you in one of his commercials. (You know, walks on the beach, diamonds, tickets to that thing you love.)

Capital "R" romance goes back to the Romantics, the literary and artistic movement in the early 19th century that took off the neatly coiffed wig of the Enlightenment and let its luscious locks get windswept in the moors. Capital "R" romance favors emotion over logic and nature over order. Capital "R" romantics are Byron, Keats, Shelley. And Heather Dixon.

While there is more than a touch of lower case "r" romance in Entwined, it is, at its heart, an unabashed capital "R" romance. Ba…

In Which I Profess My Love for Doctor Who and Neil Gaiman

Two of my favorite things are making a convergence this weekend. Neil Gaiman has written the episode of Doctor Who that will air this Saturday, May 14th. To say I am excited is to understate the level of squee this fangirl is capable of.
If you haven't seen Doctor Who since, oh, the 20th century, don't let preconceptions of bad special effects and cheesy aliens stop you from enjoying the reboot of the franchise that began in 2005.
Christopher Eccleston starred as the Ninth Doctor, bringing a edginess to the role. David Tennant took over as the sexy Tenth Doctor from 2006-2010. Matt Smith, the goofiest doctor I've ever seen, now stars as the Eleventh Doctor.
The BBC obviously upped the budget, but what made a new generation of viewers fans of the show is the remarkable storytelling. These stories are smart, funny, tragic, and scary, often at the same moment. Not every episode is an A+, but rarely is an episode anything less than a B.
I highly suggest that you start watchin…

Debut Author Challenge - April Update

Well, all the catching up that I did in March didn't last through April. I've started on Entwined by Heather Dixon, which I'm enjoying. (I also started Delirium by Lauren Oliver, even though it's not part of the challenge.)

But I never finished reading Bumped by Megan McCafferty.

I hadn't really come up with a book review policy when I started the challenge, but last month I realized I needed to come up with one. I gave Bumped a try. More than a try. I read about 3/4 of the book. But it just wasn't working it for me. The world-building didn't engage me. Some people may have L-O-V-E-D Bumped, but not every book is for every person.

And that's when I decided my book review policy. If I don't finish a book, I don't review it. Simple enough.

The next step was to find a book to replace Bumped on my reading list. After researching different titles, I'm going with Through Her Eyes by Jennifer Archer. It looks like a really cool ghost story, which is g…