Saturday, March 26, 2011

Lost And Found...A Review...

Totally engrossing.

Mesmerizing illustrations.

Fascinating Characters

Beguiling story themes.

I think that the primary grade teacher in me will always love a picture book. I loved the times when I brought my second graders back to class from lunch and recess and they put themselves on our rug and waited for me. It was the sound of my voice and the stories that I read to them that they wanted. I would read to them and we would surround ourselves in fantasy and excitement as well as reality and wonder.

This feeling came back to me as I read this book. Its audience can and should be any one from 9 to 99. I lost myself in the fantasy and the reality of this book. The stories gave me questions and answers. I could relate parts of my life to the thoughts and ideas in this book.

The book is divided into three stories. The first story is entitled The Red Tree, the second is called The Lost Thing and the last story is a John Marsden classic called The Rabbits.

I truly think that each story will have a bit of a different message for each reader. For me, The Red Tree was a beautiful message of faith and hope. The Lost Thing meant something totally different. I felt for the lost thing and yearned for people to appreciate it. The Rabbits sort of freaked me out. I interpreted it as a message to mankind to take care of the earth or the places that we love may be forever changed but it could have been about people getting along, too. Either way it captivated me.

This is one of those lovely books that you will want to keep in view. It can begin a real discussion if you are reading it to a child. You can spend hours and hours perusing the amazing art within this book and you will always find something new that you overlooked before.

I loved this book. 
I chose this book through AmazonVine...I am finally an AmazonVine reviewer!!!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Today Is An Achey Breaky Heart Kind Of Day...

There are days when I wake up and don't realize that I am an orphan.  I think of my mom and my dad...and even now...almost two years later...I reach for the phone.  I talked to them almost every day of my life.  I am used to talking to them.  They talked to my mom would chirp to my little birds.  We would call each other at least two or three times a day.  My dad was always resistant to phone plans...he just did not believe in them and would buy my mom phone cards.  She would have to either say or dial about a hundred numbers and get so frustrated that she would spend her time talking to me grumbling about my dad.  At other times she would misplace the phone cards and would make herself crazy searching all over the house for them.  My dad would write out how to call, what numbers to use, and tape the phone card to their phone table.  ( Were my parents the only ones to actually have a phone table? )  And it would still somehow disappear.  My mom was a smart and funny lady...but my dad often made her life difficult by his stubbornness or as my mom would say "your father's bullheadedness".  I remember sighing often as she went on and on about him.  Sighing again because they fussed about such non important things,  bickering over a phone card when a phone plan would fix everything.  When I think about it dad also hated cable television.  We would always want to install it for them...surprise him with the delights of The Animal Planet and The Food Channel...but he just did not believe it was a good thing for him.  He couldn't get past the holes that would have to go into his walls.  This was so frustrating then because when we were all at home for visits we had about 3 channels of local programming.  My dad would manipulate the antenna about a million different ways to prove to us he did not need cable.  Seems funny now...and sad, too, of course.

So that is my achey breaky heart story for today.  I miss them and I feel like crying.  I still have their number on all of our phones and one message from my dad just before he died.  I also have two bottles of water in the back of my refrigerator that my dad put in our car when we saw him the last time.  I can be pretty pathetic on my achey breaky heart days...

So...of course my question to you is...what do you do on your achey breaky heart days?

My mom and me...

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Waiting For Geraldine Brooks New Book...And Giving It Away Times Two!!!

I am delighted to be able to tell you about the newest book by Geraldine Brooks.

Here is a teeny teaser and Product Description from Amazon.

A richly imagined new novel from the author of the New York Times bestseller, People of the Book...

Once again, Geraldine Brooks takes a remarkable shard of history and brings it to vivid life. In 1665, a young man from Martha's Vineyard became the first Native American to graduate from Harvard College. Upon this slender factual scaffold, Brooks has created a luminous tale of love and faith, magic and adventure.

The narrator of Caleb's Crossing is Bethia Mayfield, growing up in the tiny settlement of Great Harbor amid a small band of pioneers and Puritans. Restless and curious, she yearns after an education that is closed to her by her sex. As often as she can, she slips away to explore the island's glistening beaches and observe its native Wampanoag inhabitants. At twelve, she encounters Caleb, the young son of a chieftain, and the two forge a tentative secret friendship that draws each into the alien world of the other. Bethia's minister father tries to convert the Wampanoag, awakening the wrath of the tribe's shaman, against whose magic he must test his own beliefs. One of his projects becomes the education of Caleb, and a year later, Caleb is in Cambridge, studying Latin and Greek among the colonial elite. There, Bethia finds herself reluctantly indentured as a housekeeper and can closely observe Caleb's crossing of cultures.

Like Brooks's beloved narrator Anna in Year of Wonders, Bethia proves an emotionally irresistible guide to the wilds of Martha's Vineyard and the intimate spaces of the human heart. Evocative and utterly absorbing, Caleb's Crossing further establishes Brooks's place as one of our most acclaimed novelists.

I loved People Of The Book and can't wait to read this one!!!

And a huge thank you to Rebecca Lang at Penguin for providing two lucky commentors a copy of this amazing book.

Please just comment with your email address...contest ends a week from today.

Isn't it wonderful to get an amazing book in the mail?

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

I Got Distracted And Almost Forgot...Winner...Winner...Winner...

And the winner of James LePore's

Carolsnotebook...she has been contacted.

Jim is getting ready to release his newest book...stay tuned for an amazing offer from Jim and Amazon!!!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Book Mail...Book Mail...Yeah For Book Mail!!!

Fictional university, rich boyfriend and a tragic accident...
A girl and a boy whose kisses reveal sharp teeth...the month of October and lots of imagination...yum!!!

From Booklist...a taut evocative and thrilling story containing a boarding school that is sort of cup of tea!!!

A new fantasy adventure from the author of the Fablehaven series...

From what I have read about this it is described on Booklist as an exquisite tale.  I believe it is sort of a modern folkloric tale.  Sounds yummy...

"Absorbing....[Williams] has crafted both a riveting, unusual suspense tale and an absolutely convincing character in Lacey. The book truly is miles from ordinary, in the very best way. Outstanding.” --Kirkus Reviews

Kindled last week...some preordered...some 99 cents...those 99 cent Kindle books are so appealing...and often really good.

Some really great books came in the mail, too. 

Three suspenseful stories that reveal a bit more about the characters in this author's first book...A World I Never Made...which I read, reviewed and loved.

A new suspenseful and passionate drama from this be released soon...

So...what did you do to add to your growing collection of books this week?

I apologize for not linking this week...but I moved my Amazon box to a convenient location.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Happy Happy Happy Sunday...And Back To The Drawing Board !!!

I have not been on my blog for a few days nor have I checked email.  I love email and chatting and tweeting and blogging but I do not like to ever feel as though it is a job.  That is why I stopped teaching...I was tired of deadlines and pressure.  Yesterday we opted to try to find IPADS... but that was impossible...we will just order them from Apple and wait the now required 5-6 weeks.   A tiny little secret that my husband and I share is that we both love computer games.  I love Hidden Object games...I play those on BigFish and I love playing other games on Pogo!!!  My husband does, too and we play Jungle Gin and Canasta and Scrabble with each other from our laptops.  Given a deck of cards...we would not have a clue in the world as to how to play Canasta but on line we love it.  I will sit on the sofa and Dennis will sit in his overstuffed chair and we will talk to each other and play games and talk online while we are playing our game.  We have this idea that we can do this faster and easier on that is mainly why we want them.  And the IPAD2 has cameras so when he travels he can talk and see Lucy and me...we can't wait!!!

The weather here has been amazing.  I just bought a huge puppy playpen to put on the deck for Lucy Grace.  She is an indoor cat but she loves sitting on the deck with me.  In this she can be totally enclosed, bug free and safe.  The only problem is that when I put her in it yesterday, she screamed and screamed and screamed.  So...I have to determine why she hates this totally cute playpen.

I think she hates it just because she is totally enclosed. 

So for is back to the drawing board.

I made a Key Lime Pie today...that is what we are having for dinner...

Salad and pie...

Is there anything at all wrong with pie for dinner?
I even got inside it with her is the perfect reading hideaway!!!