Monday, August 9, 2021
Sunday, August 8, 2021
Friday, August 6, 2021
around 200 pgs? Audible only
Goodreads rating: 4.12 - 2126 ratings
My rating: 5
Setting: Contemporary Brooklyn & Queens) NY
My comments: I listened to the audible of this book, and I can't imagine reading it. This was sooo good! Wonderfully narrated. Since the basis of the protagonist's relationship in the story is by voice messaging, listening to the voice messages, read by the two wonderful narrators was superb. A great romance that skips a lot of the usual tropes and has a mind of its own. I loved it. A lot. Totally clean and feel good. One of my top five all-time romances. Yep, I'm going to do it, maybe it's just the mood I'm in, but I've got to give this one a five! A gentle, many, artistic male and a feisty, not-scared-of-much female, yippee! PS. - they didn't need to add the unnecessary epilogue...
Goodreads synopsis: Stay up all night with this funny, surprising romantic comedy from Audie Award-nominee Cara Bastone — scripted exclusively for audio!
It’s officially booty o’clock, I’m alone again in my kitchen choking down a slice of terrible chocolate cake…and I’m pretty sure I just got drunk texted by the man I have a ginormous crush on.
I’ve been daydreaming about Eliot Hoffman’s dimples for two months, and even though I’m sure this was a mistake on his end, it doesn’t mean it’s not an opportunity on mine. It’s the middle of the night, and I just wanna talk to him. So I text him back.
And then somehow we keep talking…ALL NIGHT. We’re both insomniacs, so talking all night soon turns into talking EVERY night.And talking about nothing soon turns into talking about something.
And here we go from in-depth analysis of reality TV to my relationship with my family to his amazing artwork. There’s no topic we don’t cover…
Except for who I really am. It’s the only question of his I won’t answer.
As my crush turns into an avalanche of Eliot, I think of him all the time now. But if he knew who I was, the entire house of cards we’ve built this relationship on would come toppling down. I want him to be mine, but we might never be more than just a sweet dream….
Thursday, August 5, 2021
- There's another "essay", four pages long, later in the book entitled, "Museum." I love it! I think it's too long to type here, though. So glad I own the book, but I know I'd read it more if it were on my blog...Maybe I'll type it in another day.
- "The Traveling Onion" (found elsewhere on this blog and one of my favorite poems) is included in this collection. YAY!
Wednesday, August 4, 2021
Here's a great FREE blog that includes lesson ideas, games, and lots of videos: http://embracinghome.com/penguin-lesson-plans-facts/
Tuesday, July 27, 2021
Mid Grade CRF
Goodreads rating: 4.29 - 243 ratings
My rating: 5
Setting: Contemporary CT, with a small part at the beginning in the wilderness/boonies of AK
First line/s: "Rigel put the tip of the hunting knife into the hare's belly and made a careful slit."
My comments: After spending her entire life in the middle-of-nowhere "bush" in Alaska, 11 year-old Rigel - pronounced RYE/JILL, is forced to move to Connecticut with her mom and two sister, five and 14 years old, leaving her dad, Bear, in Alaska. She doesn't want to go, she's never left her home in the middle of nowhere and really, really loves it there. So this story is the story of the following year in Connecticut, all the changes she has to adapt to, bullies and no friends and not enough nature and coming to love a crow she names Blueberry. And of course she ends up making wonderful friends, finding the nature she needs, and adapting. We get to know the diverse personalities of her wonderful family member, too. This is a wonderful story with lots and lots to sink your teeth into.
Eleven-year-old Rigel Harman loves her life in off-the-grid Alaska. She hunts rabbits, takes correspondence classes through the mail, and plays dominoes with her family in their two-room cabin. She doesn’t mind not having electricity or running water—instead, she’s got tall trees, fresh streams, and endless sky.
But then her parents divorce, and Rigel and her sisters have to move with their mom to the Connecticut suburbs to live with a grandmother they’ve never met. Rigel hates it in Connecticut. It’s noisy, and crowded, and there’s no real nature. Her only hope is a secret pact that she made with her father: If she can stick it out in Connecticut for one year, he’ll bring her back home.
At first, surviving the year feels impossible. Middle school is nothing like the wilderness, and she doesn’t connect with anyone . . . until she befriends a crow living behind her school. And if this wild creature has made a life for itself in the suburbs, then, just maybe, Rigel can too.
365 Days to Alaska is a wise and funny debut novel about finding beauty, hope, and connection in the world no matter where you are—even Connecticut.
Sunday, July 25, 2021
Mid Grade SciFi
Goodreads rating: 4.15 - 1010 ratings
My rating: 5
First line/s: "The trip to Mars was the hardest thing they'd ever experienced. That's what the grown-ups said."
My comments: I was so sad when this book came to an end. It was exceptional. Five kids and six adults live in the American compound inside a lava tunnel on Mars. There are four other similar colonies close by: France, Finland, Russia, and China, but for years they have been alienated. Then all the American adults get deathly ill. The kids don't, and after some bravery on the part of the protagonis, Bell, things begin to change. A really wonderful story.
Bell has spent his whole life - all eleven years of it - on Mars. But he's still just a regular kid - he loves cats, any kind of cake, and is curious about the secrets the adults in the US colony are keeping. Like, why don't have contact with anyone on the other Mars colonies? Why are they so isolated? When a virus breaks out and the grown-ups all fall ill, Bell and the other children are the only ones who can help. It's up to Bell - a regular kid in a very different world - to uncover the truth and save his family ... and possibly unite an entire planet.
Saturday, July 24, 2021
Mid Gr CRF
Goodreads rating: 4.30 - 371 ratings
My rating: 4.5
Setting: contemporary rural Vermont
First line/s: "It's strange living in our old house now that Uncle Roderick is dead."
My comments: It's very difficult to review this book without spoilers, but I feel it's very important to read it without knowing exactly what is going to happen. It's written beautifully. From the beginning I knew I wouldn't be able to put it into my new school's library, being a Catholic School and all the problems that Catholics seem to have with anything LGBTQ. I need this job, so I won't fight that externally, only internally. And now, spoilers are coming, so if you have not read this book and even have the tiniest notion you might, do not read further. Bug, the protagonist, goes through an incredible transformation of identity in the summer s/he turns 13 and is getting ready for middle school. Bug has been born with female "parts," and has been raised as a girl. He discovers the reason that he never really sees himself when he looks in the mirror, just a copy of himself. He discovers so much more than that as well...that he is transgender and immediately begins referring to himself as HE instead of she. Everyone in his life is so understanding, no one bullies him or makes him feel in any way awkward or uncomfortable, neither kids he's grown up with or administrators in the new-to-him middle school. How I would like to very much believe this would be the reality for kids like him! In one of the reviews I read about this book, Betsy Bird says that she thinks that some kids are just getting tired of books and movies full of bullying and meanness (my words/translation). I sure hope she's right! The afterword by the author is very enlightening, I'm guessing this story - or a big part of it - is autobiographical.
Goodreads synopsis: A haunting ghost story about navigating grief, growing up, and growing into a new gender identity
Friday, July 23, 2021
found at Bosler
At first, she's embarrassed. Why can't her family get food from the grocery store? But when her mother shares a story of her family's time in China, the girl learns to appreciate the fresh food they foraged. Together, they make a new memory of watercress.
Andrea Wang tells a moving autobiographical story of a child of immigrants discovering and connecting with her heritage, illustrated by award winning author and artist Jason Chin, working in an entirely new style, inspired by Chinese painting techniques. An author's note in the back shares Andrea's childhood experience with her parents.
Wednesday, July 21, 2021
Goodreads rating: 4.0 - 2817 ratings
My rating: 4
Setting: Contemporary Irvine, CA, eastern small-town IA, and Phoenix
First line/s: "The guys were all in the living room."
My comments: Great narrator, I love the way she is able to do a male voice without changing her natural voice very much, but making it work perfectly. I loved the story. It was a feel good, very cute, fun-feeling story. Not high steam at all. It had plenty of meat and was actually somewhat believable...maybe because I wanted it to be that way, lol. Two great protagonists with lots of other interesting characters. Very much enjoyed it.
So what are a girl without a home and a guy without a wife supposed to do? A quickie wedding in Vegas will solve both their problems. It's a business arrangement, and no one even needs to know. They'll just get an annulment in a few months. What could go wrong?
Only Beckett forgot to mention his new apartment is a one-bedroom. And neither of them counted on their new friends at Middlesex University thinking they're a great couple.
The platonic newlywed game might be harder to play than Emmy thought. Especially when it starts to feel less than platonic.
Monday, July 19, 2021
Endpapers: Pale simple drawings on solid orange that explain nine Hindi words used in the story
With her parents' help, Laxmi learns that hair isn't just for heads, but that it grows everywhere, regardless of gender. Featuring affirming text by Shelly Anand and exuberant, endearing illustrations by Nabi H. Ali, Laxmi's Mooch is a celebration of our bodies and our body hair, in whichever way they grow.
Thursday, July 15, 2021
Finished 7/15/21 (returning from Maine, in CT, in the car)
Goodreads rating: 4.22 - 3384 ratings
My rating: 4
Setting: contemporary coast of Portugal
First line/s: "Joao Luna steered the Alexandria south and west into open waters."
My comments: Adventure and edge-of-your-seat kind of wondering wht will happen next....though a little slow in places. Set entirely in Portugal. You get to know Gibson Vaughn's three cohorts a bit better. I'm getting to like Hendrix more and more, he has a weird sense of humor that's fun. Jenn, I'm not so sure about. She's left Sergio, the soccer player, because she knows their relationship won't last. I really do think that Gibson has a crush on her, but I'm not sure that she reciprocates it even in the slightest. There's at least one more story written about them at this time, so will definitely see what might happen there.