Monday, December 24, 2007
I finished Sold by Patricia McCormick yesterday. Lakshmi is a 13 year old girl who lives with her family in a small mountain village in Nepal. They are a poor family, but Lakshmi is still able to enjoy the simple things in life...including taking care of her goat. This doesn't last long, though, once the monsoons wipe away their crops and her step-father says she must leave the family and find a job. This job, of course, is not a desirable one. Lakshmi, like many young girls, is sold into the slave trade of India. The story is told from Lakshmi's point of view in the form of a journal that makes it an easy, but powerful read.
Saturday, December 22, 2007
Rickshaw Girl by Mitali Perkins is a story about a Bangladeshi girl, Naima, who wishes she were born a boy so that her father doesn't have to work so much. Naima is a clever girl, always coming up with schemes - the biggest one when she decides to drive her father's rickshaw disguised as a boy so that he can have a break. Instead she crashes the rickshaw and disgraces her family. What happens next is a good twist to the story that I won't give away. Rickshaw Girl is a short, but powerful book.
The Cat with the Yellow Star by Susan Goldman Rubin and Ela Weissberger is a true story about Ela's life as a Jew taken to Terezin. It follows her life from the time she arrived, her experiences in the camp, the liberation and her life since. The book is fully illustrated with items from the camp which add to the realism of the story.
Thursday, December 20, 2007
I know from your letters that you are curious about the name and cover design of Book Three. The decision to add a fourth book to the Inheritance cycle has affected many things, this included. I promise you'll be the first to hear as soon as the title of Book Three is announced. And, like you, I am excited to see what the cover will look like!My friends at Random House have some exciting pre-publication activities planned for 2008. You can anticipate that something new and interesting will be revealed each month, beginning in January.I wish you a happy holiday season, and . . .May your swords stay sharp!
p.s. The picture above, taken in snowy Montana, shows me holding the Hawaii Nene Award plaque for Eragon.
That ^^^^^ is an update from Christopher Paolini!
Alex just emailed it to me and I signed up to the mailing list now.
Monday, December 17, 2007
I finished Saint Iggy last weekend. It's by K.L. Going. It's about a teenage boy who is supposed to be a senior in high school but because of lots of skipping school etc. he is classified as a freshman. Iggy's parents are drug addicts who constantly owe their pusher money. Iggy gets suspended from school for a minor altercation with a teacher. He really wants to finish school and contribute to society. Iggy hangs around a person who was supposed to be his, "Big Brother" but is also a druggie.
This is definitely a book about good vs. evil and overcoming circumstances in one's life. What will triumph is Iggy's life? Read it and find out! Our library has two copies.
Very fast read!!
Saturday, December 8, 2007
Just finished this book. It's written by a local Lake Mills man. Basically it's about how his mother and sister are driving him to college and how he remembers his childhood along the way. I enjoyed several chapters; in particular, the chapter where he wrestles for the regional championship for the L-Cats. The other chapter I liked was the one where he and his emotionally distant dad go to Boy Scout camp.
I think this is a good read for townies like me.
Friday, December 7, 2007
ps. for any one out there who wants a good read check out tounge and chic by christina dodd. fantastic book let me tell ya.
Tuesday, December 4, 2007
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Sunday, November 25, 2007
I finished Peace Like a River tonight by Leif Enger. It was really good! I loved the way the author used words. Here's a few examples: "...it was so cold frost paisleyed the gun barrels." "It was well-used which gave all our imaginations a pleasing slap." And, "We tiptoed through that town like a fat boy through a wolf pack."
This story is about 11-year-old Ruben, an asthmatic boy whose brother shoots and kills two boys from their small Minnesota town. After being jailed, Davy breaks out and escapes west. Most of the book traces the Land family's cross-country search for Davy, who has been controversially charged with murder.
Monday, November 19, 2007
Saturday, November 17, 2007
Monday, November 12, 2007
Sunday, November 11, 2007
Friday, November 9, 2007
Thursday, November 8, 2007
Monday, November 5, 2007
Look to the right on the main page to see my first trial Gabcast. Just click the white arrow to begin.
Friday, November 2, 2007
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
Mrs. Bade, Mrs. Edwards and I have been working on bringing a Wisconsin author to visit our school! So here's the grand unveiling: James DeVita, a local playwright, writer of young adult novels, and actor at American Players Theater in Spring Green, will be discussing his new book The Silenced with us in early December. Watch the LMC, halls and announcements for more info.
The Silenced is an excellent dystopian novel (a dystopia is an imaginary place which is depressingly wretched and whose people lead a fearful existence) set in the near future in a country that has been taken over by the Zero Tolerance Party, a political party who believes that it is necessary to give up freedom in order to be safe. Not only is this a good story about courage, it also explores a lot of issues that are very important today, like freedom of speech and what the role of the government should be in protecting our rights. Besides, the main character is just really cool! :)
Tuesday, October 9, 2007
Ms. Morris and I were talking about how King Dork by Frank Portman (see comments below) was lol funny. She read another lol book called I Love You, Beth Cooper by Larry Doyle and suggested I might like it too. I loved it!
If funny, smart and entertaining is what you want, then crack this book open.
I Love You, Beth Cooper is about a geeky valedictorian, Denis Cooverman, who gives his graduation speech by adding something he didn't want to regret if left unsaid: "I Love You, Beth Cooper!!" This declaration sets off a number of events which usually have to do with Denis almost getting killed by Beth Cooper's military boyfriend.
Monday, October 1, 2007
I just finished Under Orders by Dick Francis. This book was recommended by Brianna and she actually asked that we read it for our first Cafe Library meeting at the end of October so we will! I am having trouble getting it through inter library loan but more copies should be available in a few days.
Prolific writer, Dick Francis, pens his fourth book in the Sid Halley detective series. Super sleuth, Halley is a former champion jockey and finds murder at the races. Set in England in the steeple chase world of horse racing, things get interesting when it looks like races are being fixed, jockeys and trainers are controlling whether their horses win or lose and people turn up dead.
Straight forward whodunit that is enjoyable to read.
Sunday, September 16, 2007
I just finished Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See. Great read!! It reminded me of Memoirs of a Geisha but of course Snow Flower takes place in China not Japan. But the similarity is that these books are stories about women in the 1800's in Asia and how they live their lives with much tradition and repression.
Snow Flower is about two young girls who are sworn sisters or laotongs. Laotong means, "old sames," and when a girl signs a contract with another girl, they are matched for life. Snow Flower and Lily write on a fan that passes between them in nu shu, "women's writing," a secret writing that only women know. Here they can break out of their isolation and tell their hopes, dreams and accomplishments to their old sames.
Lily is the narrator who tells her story beginning at the age of 5 through her 80's. She tells the story of their painful and sometimes deadly foot binding tradition, how women live most of their lives in total seclusion, the unvalued status of a daughter and difficult arranged marriages. But mostly this is a story of two friends.
Saturday, September 15, 2007
Sunday, September 2, 2007
I finished Deception Point by Dan Brown about 10 minutes ago. Alex gave it to me to read and said it was really good. He was right! It's a fast-paced adventure packed with murder and whodunit suspense. It was a fast read for 558 pages and I would recommend it!!
I also finished Enrique's Journey by Sonia Nazario. This is a non-fiction account of one boy's journey from Guatemala to the United States. Enrique's mother leaves him when he is five years old for the U.S. to make a better life for her family. She works illegally so she can send money back to Guatemala, promising she'll return in a few years. As the years pass, Enrique is eaten by the desire to be with his mother. At age 14, he decides to try to find her. With only the clothes on his back, a bit of food and his mother's phone number, Enrique illegally rides the trains north. He rides on top of the trains or in empty box cars. Both places rife with danger.
Enrique tries 8 times to get to the U.S. He sees murder, torture, corruption by officials and many young people lose limbs or worse by being pulled under by the trains.
If you've never heard about this plight of poor Central Americans heading north trying to make a better life for themselves, this is a must read.
Thursday, August 30, 2007
Thursday, August 23, 2007
I just finished The White Darkness by Geraldine McCaughrean. It had a slow-ish beginning and I thought briefly of abandoning the book but I slugged on. I'm glad I did because if got markedly better. There was murder and intrigue as well as lots of detail of what it would be like to be stranded in Antarctica.
The main character, Sym, is a teen aged girl who is obsessed with Captain Oates from Scott's doomed expedition to the South Pole. Sym has conversations in her head with Oates and she shares her thoughts and dreams.
When Sym's "Uncle Victor" takes her on an expedition to the South Pole, the adventure begins.
I would recommend this book.
Sunday, August 19, 2007
I just finished two books...The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid: A Memoir by Bill Bryson and The Last Days: A Novel by Scott Westerfeld.
I really liked both books but they were quite different. The Thunderbolt Kid was laugh out loud funny at times. It's about Bill Bryson's experiences growing up in Iowa circa 1950's. He uses real experiences that happened to him then he stretches and exaggerates quite a bit at times. I think anyone can relate to the situations he gets into while growing up or at least appreciate them!
The Last Days is a sequel to Peeps by Westerfeld. It's another installment of peeps, parasite positives, helping save the earth from evil. The setting is present day New York City. The characters are teenagers who experience some of the same problems as all teenagers but then it goes a step further as these teens help save the human race. If your read Peeps and liked it, I guarantee you'll like The Last Days.
Saturday, August 11, 2007
I read Twisted by Laurie Halse Anderson yesterday. It was a FAST read. It's about a senior high school boy, Tyler, who is somewhat of a nerd/loser that is sought after by one of the best looking girls in the class.
There's lots of family drama in this book; dysfunctional family etc. Also, some legal drama in that Tyler, has a bad-boy image his senior year because of his Foul Deed, that is his brush with the law that gets him some mandatory community service time plus a parole officer.
Lots of serious issues are covered in this fast read: police trouble, exploitation of a senior girl, family issues and even suicide.
Laurie Halse Anderson also wrote Speak among other books.
Anderson seems to take on tough subjects that teens face with truth and reality.
As I might of said in my prior post, it's about this 14-year-old boy, Bone, who is homeless. Bone travels from New York to Jamaica to find a sense of family and love. At times it is very heart wrenching.
I would recommend this book to students grades 9-12.
Thursday, August 9, 2007
I'm half way through Rule of the Bone by Russell Banks. It's a very heart-breaking story about a 14-year-old boy who leaves home because of an abusive step-father and a mother who given the choice between her son and her husband, choses her husband.
Chappie, aka Bone, meets up with several other homeless kids and adults along his journey. I'm anxious to find out how this book turns out.
Not a book for the faint hearted when it comes to street language.
This book was recommended to me by Chloe and Kariann.
I'll report back when I finish it.
Monday, August 6, 2007
Saturday, July 28, 2007
I just started King Dork by Frank Portman. I really don't like the title because it sounds like a hokey young adult lit book BUT it is really fresh and very intelligent writing, I think. I find the main character very witty, funny and sarcastic.
It's about a sophomore boy who is a total geek. He has one friend at his high school and they are constantly trying to form a band...they change their band name almost daily. One problem though, they need instruments and more members. Anyway, the real theme to this book is growing up and high school experiences. Now that is the main theme as of page 100. But reading the inside flap, things are going to really start moving. When Tom Henderson, aka King Dork, discovers his father's copy of the Catcher in the Rye by Salinger, apparently there's a mystery to be solved.
So far a refreshing, funny book.
I finished the book and there are parts that literally had me laughing so hard that I had tears in my eyes!! (The French class part...read it!!!)
Friday, July 27, 2007
I am awed by how an author can weave stories and details into 7 books and keep the reader interested and not confused.
I recommend this book to you all.
Now, Accio Diet Coke!!
Thursday, July 26, 2007
I cried last night...but I don't want to tell you why in case you want to read the book, which you should!!
I'm with Playswithsquirrels, she told me that she doesn't want to finish the book because she doesn't want it to be over! I agree!
I think I'll finish it this weekend. I'll report to you all when I finish.
Gotta go, my butterbeer is waiting!
- 1 cup (8 oz) club soda or cream soda
- ½ cup (4 oz) butterscotch syrup (ice cream topping)
- ½ tablespoon butter
Step 1: Measure butterscotch and butter into a 2 cup (16 oz) glass. Microwave on high for 1 to 1½ minutes, or until syrup is bubbly and butter is completely incorporated.
Step 2: Stir and cool for 30 seconds, then slowly mix in club soda. Mixture will fizz quite a bit.
Step 3: Serve in two coffee mugs or small glasses; a perfectly warm Hogwarts treat for two!
Monday, July 23, 2007
I am reading Deathly Hallows too! I am so afraid that someone will spoil the ending for me! My daughter, Playswithsquirrels, had the ending for the last one ruined a day after the book was out!!! She is still mad at that person!!!
Playswithsquirrels went to a midnight Harry Potter party on Friday night. She had her book reserved at Barnes and Nobles...had a butter beer and came home to read a chapter of the new book.
I am enjoying the book so far. J.K. Rowling writes so fluidly that the pages just fly by!
The Green Lantern, AKA Chirstopher S., thinks we should read this book for the first Cafe Library of the school year. I think it might be too hard to get through inter library loan and I don't want to buy 8+ copies.
What do you all think?
One more question...would you rather have Cafe Library during Resource or during lunch like we have in the past. (If during Resource, I would still bring a healthy snack.)
Sunday, July 22, 2007
Thursday, July 19, 2007
Read the book or this article from the New York Times and make your own decision. Share your thoughts here too!
Briefly, the book is about a 10-year-old girl named Lucky who is trying to find her, "Higher Power," after overhearing recovering alcoholics use the phrase at an AA meeting. It's also about how Lucky struggles with her family identity...her mother is dead, she never met her father, and her legal guardian is her father's second French wife who Lucky thinks might leave her. (How's that for a long complicated sentence?)
Sunday, July 15, 2007
I finished New Moon by Stephenie Meyer. It wasn't as good as Twilight but it did get better. One thing that bothered me in Meyer's writing is that she overused a character trait with a number of her characters...she described them "rolling their eyes" over 20 times in the book. Really, I counted! I will read the third in the trilogy, Eclipse due out yet this summer.
I'm reading Peder Victorious: A Tale of the Pioneers Twenty Years Later by Ole Edvart Rolvaag.
This is for my adult book club. It's rather BORING!! I want to abandon it so I have time to read my high school summer reading list...I just may.
Monday, July 9, 2007
Slowly but surely I'm reading Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett (Its almost 1,000 pages long). The time period is medieval England when the great churches were being built. So far a builder has been going from town to town looking for work. Along the way his pregnant wife died during childbirth and the child was left to a monastery to be raised. Tom the Builder still has not found work, but he continues to search. There's also some drama with the monks in the various monasteries - that story is just developing. A friend recommended this book, but I'm not sure what I think of it yet.
Friday, July 6, 2007
I finished My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult. Very good book! It would be a great one for Cafe Library during the school year. The ending blew me away!!!!!!!!
I also finished Twilight by Stephenie Meyer. It was good too. I'm starting the sequel, New Moon. I've heard from different sources that it's not as good as the first one and so far I tend to agree. Too many words and phrases overused...for example, the characters have, "rolled their eyes," 4 times already in the book and I'm only on page 60.
I'll let you know if it gets better!
Someone else post please!!!!!!!
Friday, June 29, 2007
Wednesday, June 27, 2007
Twilight and Deception Point are on hold right now and I'm reading My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult. I picked this title for my adult book club and I'm hosting so I thought I'd better read this first.
It's good and I believe it will have lots of discussion points. More later.
Thursday, June 7, 2007
Tuesday, June 5, 2007
I finished How I Live Now tonight. I was satisfied with the ending...I was worried a bit.
My last post talked about controversial topics in this book, one being the love affair between cousins. Other touchy topics included scenes of war and death...some quite uncomfortable. There was one scene where crows were circling and eating flesh from dead bodies. There was a somewhat graphic, yet short, killing incident. I don't know if this is considered controversial but the narrator always refers to God in the lowercase god sense. That was different.
I definately think this is a worthwhile book to read. I'd give it 2 thumbs up. It was a fast read. The voice of the narrator drew me in and made me care for her.
This book took me out of my box because it was somewhat futuristic. It was set in almost present time but during the next world war.
I hope this blog had lots of activity this summer!!!!!
Kariann, where are you???????????????????????
Monday, June 4, 2007
How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff. Summary: "To get away from her pregnant stepmother in New York City, fifteen-year-old Daisy goes to England to stay with her aunt and cousins, with whom she instantly bonds, but soon war breaks out and rips apart the family while devastating the land."
This is the book I referred to in Victoria's post. I'm reading it right now. There are several controversial topics in it...Daisy is in love and having an affair with her cousin for one thing. I'll report back with more shocking events as I finish reading this.
Friday, June 1, 2007
Thursday, May 31, 2007
Book: A Clockwork Orange
The book that I want to read this summer (and I think is a total summer reading book because of the style of writing) is A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess. From what I've heard, it's supposed to be an amazing book & movie. I have tried reading it for the last couple days and it's sort of hard to understand, but once you've been reading it for a little while you sort of 'grow' into the writing. I don't know if that made any sense, but oh well!
Author: Meg Rosoff
A book that I have tried to read is Just In Case which is by Meg Rosoff. She also wrote the book How I Live Now. What I have to say about the book is that it wasn't very good. I don't like her style of writing and it just gets very uninteresting. Just In Case was about a boy who feels like fate is out to get him so he tries to reinvent himself. One of the things that I don't get is how he has an imaginary dog, but no one seems to see him. If you've read this book, can you explain it to me, please?!
Book: The Blue Girl
Anyways! The book that I am now reading is The Blue Girl by Charles de Lint. It's a fantesy book and they don't usual fit my fancy but all I have to say about this book is: WOW! It's about a girl named Imogene who is 17 and moves to a new town and becomes friends with a girl named Maxine. Everything seems to be going fine until she meets Ghost and his little fairy pals. I think that is all that I am going to give out, because I don't want to spoil it for anyone who is planning on reading it. I'm only about a little over halfway through, but I love it and want to read more of his books this summer.
I know this has been a long blog, and if you've read it, I give you props because it probably wasn't very interesting. But, if you have any books that you would recommend for summer reading, please tell me!
I finished Dairy Queen by Catherine Gilbert Murdock. I was worried that the ending wasn't going to satisfy me but it did...somewhat. I guess I would give this book a one thumb up and one down. I didn't hate it but it wasn't my favorite. I don't want to discourage anyone from picking it up though. It's just that I'm not into sports very much. If you are, this one might appeal to you. Add in a bit of romance and the Wisconsin setting, and that's why I gave it one up.
Thursday, May 24, 2007
I am reading Dairy Queen by Catherine Gilbert Murdock. Here's a summay:
"After spending her summer running the family farm and training the quarterback for her school's rival football team, sixteen-year-old D.J. decides to go out for the sport herself, not anticipating the reactions of those around her."
So far, I'd give it one thumb a quarter down and the other thumb down. It's not my favorite but I'll finish it and let you know if it redeems itself. BTW, we have this in our HS LMC.
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
I finished The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett today. It read like a B movie starring Humphry Bogart...wait a minute it was made into a B movie starring Bogart in the early 1940's! I was a bit disappointed with the book but I was glad I read it because it is somewhat of a classic and I wanted to have it in my repertoire.
Friday, May 18, 2007
I am going to read How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff for sure this summer...probably my first one. As I told you in person, the reason I picked this book up was because it was a recommened read for teachers who were going to take a class with the CCBC in Madison about controversial topics in high school literature. Just give me the word "controversial" associated with a book and I'M GOING TO READ IT!!!!!!!
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
The last Cafe Library of the school year met today. We discussed Peeps by Scott Westerfeld finally. It was overwhelmingly a two thumbs up book...not unanimously though...Katie gave it two thumbs to the side which translates to one up and one down...
Everyone except Breanna would read the next book, The Last Days. Breanna said "maybe".
Our dessert was a mixture of fun take offs from the book. We had Lady Fingers, gummy worms, haystacks and a no bake cookie. You read the book and figure out why we had them...
Hope to hear from tons of peeps (not parasite positives!) this summer on this blog!!!!!!
Tuesday, May 15, 2007
Monday, May 14, 2007
Sunday, May 13, 2007
Saturday, May 12, 2007
But of course, the book got good for the last 50ish pages of the book. It was about a girl who is in her first serious relationship and had a best friend who's boyfriend dies, and that she is pregnant with his baby.
That's all I have for now!
But of course, the book got good for the last 50ish pages of the book. It was about a girl who is in her first serious relationship and had a best friend who's boyfriend dies, and that she is pregnant with his baby.
That's all I have for now!
Thursday, May 10, 2007
Summer is my time to read so more suggestions will be coming.
Wednesday, May 9, 2007
Tuesday, May 8, 2007
Some of my books are....(in no particular order)
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling
the seventh, and sadly, last installment in the Harry Potter series
The next Eragon book (whenever it comes out)
Possibly the next Peeps book.
I'll probably re-read some of my book series, like Heartland by Lauren Brooke and The Phantom Stallion by Terri Farley.
I also read (and write) stories on a website called www.quizilla.com. its a really neat website, you all should check it out!
The Monkey Wrench Gang by Edward Abbey
Hayduke Lives by Edward Abbey
These are two linear books about a hob-job band of "enviromentalists" who are trying to rid the world of pesky damns and bridges. The reason for the quotation marks is because their ways of getting rid of these mega structors are not exactly enviromentally friendly. Its funny and has it's share of romance.
The Doors of Perception by Aldous Huxley
This book is more of a science/philosophy lesson than a book. However it still holds its place in my mind for one of the greatest books. Aldous was one of the leading researchers in the Peyote field. He induces himself with this substance and tries to explain the effects in terms that your normal Joe could understand. (The Doors got their name from this book...enough said)
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
This is a must read for everyone; woman, child, alien, alpha, beta, and of course, highschool student. It talks of the misfortunes of living in a utopia, where there is free love, but no children. Its definately a thinkers work.
Well I hope someone will read this and pick of one of these great works. There will be more to come, most definately, in due time.
Thursday, May 3, 2007
I'm excited that Evelyn has agreed to help lead the discussion of Peeps on May 16th during lunch! Evelyn and I have discussed some fun snacks to serve...hint they have something to do with the book...moowhoohaha!
Saturday, April 28, 2007
I found this podcast featuring Scott Westerfeld and his wife, Justine Larbalestier. They ask each other questions about their latest books, The Last Day and Magic Child. Larbalestier's triology includes Magic Lessons, Magic or Madness and Magic Child.
copy and paste this url in your address bar. Look to the left for a podcast link. It's about 10 mins. long I believe.
Let's find out what Ms. Morris thinks because she already read the sequel...The Last Days.
Hope everyone can come to the last meeting. I believe I set the date for Wednesday May 16th during lunch. I will put this in the announcements on Monday.
Have a fantastic weekend everyone!
Saturday, April 7, 2007
Reviews & Awards
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books starred 09/01/05
Horn Book 04/01/06
Kliatt starred 09/01/05
Kirkus starred 08/01/05
Publishers Weekly 10/03/05
School Library Journal starred 10/01/05
Voice of Youth Advocates (V.O.Y.A.) 10/01/05
Wilson's Senior High School 11/01/06
I am steadily reading Peeps. It's getting pretty good. It's a bit of a vampire, mystery, love, crime type of novel. Hope you all like it. There is only one copy in our library with the cover like in my last post. The other copies I bought for the lib have different covers on them.
Hope you are reading too!
Friday, April 6, 2007
Hello Cafe Library bloggers!
I just started reading Peeps by Scott Westerfeld. It's the lastest maybe the last Cafe Library book we'll read together this school year. It's about vampires...or parasite positivies...peeps. That's really all I know so far.
I'm going to promote using this blog in the summer for everyone or anyone interested in sharing what he/she reads with other LMHS students.
Read On L-Cats, Read On!