Monday, December 30, 2013

Locomotive

Locomotive by Brian Floca

Wow, wow, wow. Wow. Ok. I loved it.

This book is awesome!

It is one part poetry, one part art, one part maps and diagrams, 10 parts awesome and interesting information about trains! Dude, I've lost track of all the parts. Track, get it? But seriously. It managed to be an interesting story about a family going from one coast to another right after the meeting of the transcontinental railroad was finished at promontory point, but also tell you all about what it is like to drive a train, ride in a train, be a fireman, (oh, we are talking about a steam engine here of course, because, back in the day, you know) etc. Reading the book gives you awesome vocabulary but also it's all in this meaningful context so you know exactly what the words are without a glossary or a big break in the interesting stuff "so that I can explain what this word means to you."

The text and illustrations are perfectly married (which is good because they're both by Brian Floca) and oh my goodness the illustrations! Flippin' gorgeous! They're magical and detailed when they need to be and pure and simple when that is called for. The landscapes! The technical details of the inside of a train! The people's faces! It is all there you guys.

I found it so fun to read Locomotive out loud. The flow of the text is so easy and lends itself so well to expressive reading. Variety in the fonts gave me help in reading it aloud to the boys, without poking me in the eyes. (Yay for fonts well done!) Though some pages have a lot of text, it is spaced in such a way that it is still easy to read and that meshes well with the art. It seems obvious to me that Brian Floca took this trip, saw these places (at least once, if not many times) and just loves his subject. I mean it is so cool. It gets you excited about everything about it! I'm geeking out.

Something else I loved about Locomotive is that it is written in collegial direct address* -- meaning, he says things like "you look out the window and you see this, or that." The direct address made the story much more interesting and relevant to me.

The boys loved it. Benjamin (age 5) sat attentively through all 64 pages; and while Levi (age 2) did some running around while I read it, he stayed within earshot and popped back over to look at pictures. Benjamin's favorite page was the back endpaper, which has a cutaway diagram of a steam engine. We spent a long time looking at that page -- reading and deciphering the inner workings of the engine. Levi's favorite page was the one that showed the toilet. This is unsurprising, since he is potty training. Potty TRAINing? Ok I'll stop.

This book was so awesome that I went and found Brian Floca's previous book, Moonshot. Locomotive is still my fave but Moonshot was good too.

Definitely check it out! Have you already read it? What did you think?
_________
*do not be impressed, I did not know this is what it was called until I read it on his website, courtesy of a Kirkus reviewer.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

A very fun new series

I have a problem with book groups. Even though I love to read, I don't love being told what to read (which is why I was an English major in college for exactly one day). I especially don't love being told what to read when the books in question are not my kind of books. So even though there is a book group in my congregation every time I move to a new place, I never join.

Well. I am not alone in my anti-book-group feelings. Some other young moms in my ward (an LDS congregation) got together and decided to start up their own underground book group where we will not read edgy, tragic, ultra-modern, and let's face it, often hard-to-get-through books. We're gonna read for fun! At the end of a long day, if I'm going to sit down to pick up a book, it's not going to be with a whole lot of remaining mental energy. I just wanna be entertained.

Our first book-group read was a new-ish middle-grade fantasy book called Keeper of the Lost Cities, by Shannon Messenger. I totally loved it and had to immediately reserve book two, Exile, at the library. Book two was, perhaps, even better. I really love this series. Imaginative, fun, exciting, clever, sometimes laugh-aloud funny, and just-plain great. Alas, book two was published this year, which means I have to wait for the next. I don't know if it's a trilogy or a series. On the back of the book, it's described as Harry Potter meets Lord of the Rings. That's kind of true. Definitely more Harry Potter vibe than the latter. Check it out, though, especially if you have a middle-grade reader who loves fantasy. Or if you are an adult reader who loves middle-grade fantasy. :)


Our next underground-book-group read is Keturah and Lord Death. My choice. I can't wait for my friends to read it!

Friday, October 4, 2013

Hoop Genius: How a Desperate Teacher and a Rowdy Gym Class Invented Basketball

Hoop Genius: How a Desperate Teacher and a Rowdy Gym Class Invented Basketball 
by John Coy, illustrated by Joe Morse.

Well, the title gives one a pretty good idea of what this book is about, I'd say! It tells the story of James Naismith and the invention of basketball.

Though not a wordy book, Hoop Genius manages to tell about why Naismith wanted to invent the sport, his inspiration for it (a childhood game called Duck on a Rock), the first two games played, the first games played by women, and the inception of basketball into the Olympics! It's fun, well structured (plotted? Not sure that plot is the word), and accessible to those who don't like to see too many words per page. :) There was one paragraph that I found super awkward and had to re-read in order to parse properly, but other than that the writing does a great job of staying out of the way of a cool story.

The illustrations intrigued me -- deep hues and high contrast make the book eye catching. And so many good pictures of people playing basketball! All of the pictures where subjects are in motion were spot-on for me. Some of the illustrations of people holding still were not so golden in my opinion. Take the cover as an example. Though the players' bodies are perhaps out of proportion, it lends a sense of motion to the image. The center portrait of Naismith, however? Just odd. There were a few other pages that bothered me in this way, too. Still, well done overall, and if you're going to illustrate a basketball book, you'd better be good at depicting people in motion!

Super Bonus: All the awesome moustaches! Also the endpaper, which is a facsimile of the first draft of the rules of basketball.
___________
This book is nominated for the 2013 Cybils in the category of Elementary/Middle Grade Nonfiction. My views, stated above, are my own, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the round one judging panel, of which I am a member.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Cybils 2013

Hello! Here is some exciting news for you: Cybils nominations are open! If you've read a good children's/YA book that was published in the last year, you can nominate it for the Cybils award! Check here for the rules and the nomination form.

Also of interest: I will be a first round judge on the Elementary/Middle Grade Nonfiction Panel, taking all the nominations and choosing the best handful for the round two panel to evaluate. I'm super excited! I have never been on a nonfiction panel before -- all my previous Cybils experience is in the Middle Grade Fiction and the Graphic Novels categories. I do adore children's nonfiction though -- when I research a subject I often turn first to children's nonfiction about it because it is often the most accessible, easiest to read, most enjoyable and accurate information on the subject. For a broad picture of a subject, for an interesting story on a subject, for the basics, children's non-fiction is great.

Here again is the link to the Cybils site. Poke around there for great book lists in all genres, and don't forget to nominate the best titles of the year!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Witchlanders

It's been too long since I posted anything---pretty much because it's been a long time since I had a chance to read a book! I was hungering for a little fun book-reading time, and I grabbed this one at random off the bookshelf in the YA section of my library. (Am I alone in feeling like I should get in and out of that section as quickly as possible, certain that the teens are giggling at my oldness behind my back? Guess I've retained some of that everyone-is-watching-me teenage paranoia myself. Oh well.) :)

Witchlanders did not disappoint in fun, fast-action, interesting plot and characters, and un-put-down-able-ness. It was a great story. I am bummed that the author seems to have no interest in writing a sequel. It's kind of begging for the story to be continued. She says she thinks it works as a stand-alone. But the big, overarching problem the book presents---an impending war---is unresolved. So. Personally, I think there needs to be a sequel.

Ryder does not believe in magic. His mother has raised him to laugh at the idea of it, at the religion that everyone else in the town follows---including his father and sister. Grudgingly, he gives his tithe to the witches, the bone-casters whose job it is to tell the future and warn their country of danger. When his mother sees a vision of an assassin in the mountains, Ryder has no choice but to follow what she's seen, digging far deeper into the history of his war-torn country and of magic itself than he ever could have imagined---or believed.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon

My latest recommendation for you is Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin.

This is the story of Minli, who lives in the shadow of Fruitless Mountain, and how she changes her fate. Minli's story is interspersed with relevant folk tales that guide her and shape her own tale. Quick pacing ( characteristic of the folk tale) and short chapters make it an excellent candidate for reading aloud. I hope to read it with my boys, once they've finished The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe with Jacob. The story is punctuated with lovely illustrations by the author.

This is a recent Newbery Honor book, and it deserved the recognition in my opinion. I'm glad I have it in my personal collection -- I bought it at KidLitCon last year, where Grace Lin spoke. I had heard a lot of good about it online, and after the first chapter I was still on the fence, but I quickly fell into camp This-book-is-awesome. I think I was pretty much hooked after Minli bought the goldfish (pun intended). Definitely check it out.

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon has a companion book that just came out, Starry River of the Sky. I plan on tracking that one down.
________
My review of Grace Lin's The Year of the Dog

Thursday, July 25, 2013

The Best Time To Do Everything

We made it! We got to our new house and I tell you what: I did not realize how starving I was for books until we went to our new library. Woohoo!

In less than 24 hours I devoured The Best Time To Do Everything by Michael Kaplan.

Premise: The author interviewed various experts on when would be the best time to (fill in the blank).

Its something of a coffee-table book, as the contents are not organized in any particular way (though there is an index). Many of the "best times" are backed by research and it often isn't well cited, which adds to the casual feel of the book. This book was fun for me to read, but I don't actually feel any smarter now, I just feel like I know more trivia. Not there is anything wrong with trivia!

One of my faves was "the best time to sleep in." According to the book this is Saturday morning, rather than Sunday morning. This validated me: I always sleep in Saturdays. Ha! Anyway,  it talks about the best time to get married, the best time to approach a celebrity, the best time to sell everything and go live on a boat, and loads of other things you might want to do sometime. When the time is right.

So, when is the best time to read this book? Any time you feel inclined.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Plain Kate and Smile


I snagged these two from the shelves of our new public library and simply devoured both of them. That's right: we mostly survived moving to a far away place where we had no family!

Smile by Raina Telgemeier

This is sort of a staple of children's lit graphic novels. If a bookstore is only going to carry one kids' GN it seems to be this one. It won the Eisner award, and I've seen loads of other GN's blurbed by its author. (Blurb = that line on the back of the book that says "this book was super awesome! signed, famous person.")

Anyway, I figured that I needed to fill in that gap in my graphic novel education and read this book. So I picked it up the other day. It was fantastic!

Having been through oral surgery, braces, and orthodontic appliances of my own, I really related to Raina. (The book is autobiographical.) Oh goodness! The pictures and descriptions brought it all right back, and it has been more than 10 years since the orthodondist declared I was done.

The art is fantastic -- it's clean, colorful, and easy to interpret. The plot is great. I mean really, sometimes the true story is so much more compelling than the fictional one. For me, Smile was much more enjoyable than Telgemeier's latest graphic novel, Drama, which has a fictional protagonist. I liked that one, too, but I'd rate Smile higher.  If it sounds interesting to you, give it a try. It's a good book.

*Fun Fact: Raina Telgemeier is married to Dave Roman, whose stuff I have enjoyed!

Plain Kate by Erin Bow

This one is a middle grade fantasy novel. I had heard so much good about it (read: like 20 bloggers I trust saying things like "It was so awesome. I cried.") that I decided to give it a go. However, since everyone said they cried, I knew I had to wait for the right time to read it. That time came, and I loved the book.

Plain Kate is a beautiful and sad fairy tale. It is not a retelling of a familiar fairytale, it is a fresh plot and set of characters. I loved the Eastern-European setting, which gave the story dimension but didn't intrude or overwhelm the simple hero's journey plot.  I also appreciated that the plot was not complicated by a romance or a love triangle.

I really found myself rooting for Kate, and thoroughly appreciated the complex character of the book's villain(s). I mean, Plain Kate had to overcome lots of things that various people did or said to her, and there was one main antagonist. But I'd be hard-pressed to put people into "good guys" and "bad guys" groups. Many of the characters did both good and bad.

So, in that way, I guess it is not like a fairy tale. Fairy tales tend to have good guys and bad guys very clearly set out. But the simple quality of the writing, and the inclusion of some magic (as well as fear of magic) gave it a very fairy-tale feel.

It was a great read. I would highly recommend it. Also, I did not end up shedding tears.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Austenland Trailer!

The official movie trailer for the Austenland movie is here! Yay! It debuts August 16th in N.Y. and L.A. with other cities to be announced.



It is based on the book Austenland by Shannon Hale, of course!

Funny thing: Benjamin just said, "What's Austenland mom? Is it Alice in Wonderland, but Austenland?" "Haha! Kind of."

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Moving IRL

Update: books unpacked and lookin' good!
It's a shelfie.
Alysa here, and I'm writing to you from amid the stacks of boxes. We are moving! (No, not the website, that URL will stay the same.) I wanted to mark this occasion somehow here on Everead. I have lived in three different homes (soon to be four!) during the lifetime of this blog, and I feel like it is a lovely constant thing, wherever I go. Hooray for the internet! Can I get an amen?

A word about packing books: Holy moly we have a lot of them! I plan to update our catalog while unpacking them in Georgia. FYI, I catalog our home library on LibraryThing. Anyway, we decided to pack them ALL up and then keep a little shelf of library books for the last couple weeks. We've now turned in all the library books, and have just three picture books, borrowed from our friend and neighbor, Kate. Those we won't have to give up until we drive away. We're taking two days to get to Georgia, so I fully expect that we'll have to stop for a book somewhere along the way. What can I say? We can't none of us sleep without a bedtime story first. 

Moving makes me want to buy books (but then again, what doesn't?). I mean, sure, while I was packing them I weeded the collection. But I have been sorely tempted to buy myself a couple books as a housewarming gift... 

Amazon
The first one I would get for myself is A Pattern Language by Christopher Alexander. I heard about this book from Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project. In fact, she recently posted about it again, here. I checked it out from my library once, and it was just fascinating. It was the sort of thing I found myself reading bits out loud to friends and family, and pulling into conversations. I would love a personal copy to reference.
Barnes & Noble



Barnes & Noble
The second one I would give myself would be Martha Stewart's Homekeeping Handbook. I saw this one at my friend Rachel's house once. It's like the bible of housekeeping or something! It is very thick and detailed. Anyway, I'm feeling a renewed desire to keep a clean and orderly home (ah, moving!) and I feel like this would make a great reference book. Plus, our new place has wood floors and I've never lived on and maintained wood floors and what am I supposed to do? What if I totally damage this place? It's a rental, you know. *shudder*
Amazon
So anyway, we're moving! And see how I'm procrastinating the last of the packing by blogging? heh heh. We load the truck in less than 7 hours!

__

Update: I've added some pictures of the book covers for you! They are affiliate links to the stores listed, so if you make a purchase after clicking on them I will earn a small commission. Thanks for supporting this awesome blog!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Body Electric

Lena is an average, small-town girl who runs into (literally) an anything-but-average guy and finds her world completely upended. She is ordinary. He is related to ... I can't tell because it would spoil the plot twist ... non-human beings, we'll say. Lena soon finds that being dumped by her jock boyfriend was the least of her worries.

Allie Duzett is a newcomer to the ever-growing world of YA fantasy. I've loved the genre for a good-long while, so I've done my share of reading in it. Things I enjoyed about The Body Electric: it is good, clean fun. The plot is fast-paced enough to keep a reader's attention. And Zach, the protagonist, was very lovably clueless and good-hearted (and good-looking, natch). His scenes were extra entertaining. Things I didn't love: the revelation about Zach's true nature completely blind-sided me. Which is why I won't spill it here. I felt like it wasn't built up to well enough. The first half of the book was totally different from the second half of it. There wasn't enough world building. I mean, it's not a long book, so an author's limited in that way. Anyway. I just didn't see the second half of the book coming.

Still---good, clean fun. Kudos to the new author!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

On a personal note

As you may have noticed, updates over here have been sparse. As always, what isn't happening onstage can be explained by what is happening behind the scenes. The Stewart household is a big part of Everead's backstage, and we've just welcomed a new member of our family, newborn Jubilee.  She is an absolute peach. And, speaking of peaches, we will be moving more than 600 miles to the great state of Georgia here in a few weeks. We've got lots going on over here, but the stage manager still wants to share some books with you.

In honor of the new baby: my favorite books to give at baby showers

The two pregnancy books I just had to own this time around: Pilates Pregnancy Guide by Lynne Robinson and Birthing from Within by Pam England and Rob Horowitz. I highly recommend both. 

pregnancy book recommendations
Welcome, baby Jubilee!
update: Pilates Pregnancy Guide has been re-released as Pilates for Pregnancy. Here are affiliate links if you're interested!
Barnes and Noble affiliate link
Barnes and Noble affiliate link
  

Monday, March 25, 2013

Giveaway! and thoughts on eyeglasses, by Hilary McKay

One of my favorite authors these days is Hilary McKay. I simply adore the Casson family and all the books that Ms. McKay has written about them. Also, her sequel to Frances Hodgson Burnett's A Little Princess did not disappoint. That one is titled Wishing for Tomorrow.

So. You can imagine I was thrilled to hear that she has a new series (coming to the US from across the pond) about a girl named Lulu. I put Lulu and the Duck in the Park on hold at my local library, but didn't get over there in time to pick it up! Alas. Thankfully, there is a review at Madigan Reads, if you're interested. Madigan says, "The reading level is just a skoche easier than Junie B. Jones and Magic Tree House, but a nice step up from Amelia Bedelia or Jean Van Leeuwen's Amanda Pig series."

Book 2 in the Lulu series
available in print and ebook
Book 3, available Fall 2013.
While arranging to participate in the Lulu Blog tour, I got thinking: what would I like to hear Ms. McKay's thoughts about? And the answer was definitely eyeglasses. Both Ashley and I have worn glasses since childhood, and Ashley's adorable kids are already getting glasses of their own. I just loved in Wishing for Tomorrow and in the Casson Series when some of my favorite characters got glasses. Ms. McKay's descriptions of the event were right on. I said to myself, "this is a woman who knows about getting glasses!" and I wondered what her story was. In Hilary McKay's own words:

Eyeglasses! 
I must say, I was a bit surprised to be given that as a blog post, but then when I thought about it, I realised that I had used eyeglasses twice in books that matter very much to me. 
So, eyeglasses and my little sister. 
When my little sister was eight years old it finally dawned on her friends and relations that the reason she never seemed to know quite where she was, was simple. She was living her life in a lovely blur. 
I seem to remember that my sister liked her lovely blur. She was content with her impressionist painting of a world and was quite happy to keep it that way. She did not take kindly to the idea of glasses, and when she finally got them she saw no advantage at all in all the sudden edges and outlines and corners that appeared. She didn’t like the world in focus.
And then it became night. Dark. And why was she out in the garden? I can’t remember. All I can remember is her outraged indignation when she looked up. 
And saw stars. 
All her life she had known about stars. She had seen pointy shapes drawn on Christmas cards. She had been given gold and silver sticky backed ones for extra good work at school.  But she had never seen stars in the sky. 
The stars in the sky that night nearly blew my little sister  away. She stared and stared, and nearly fell over backwards staring, and as she stared and saw more and more she got crosser and crosser. She yelled at all us star-familiar people  standing around her, ‘Why didn’t you tell me? Why didn’t you tell me? WHY DIDN’T YOU TELL ME THEY WERE THERE?’ 
So that, I suppose, is why eyeglasses appear in my books. That night of revelation when several thousand new suns shone down on my sister all at once, and made her so astonished and indignant, and we all laughed... 
But at the same time were not too far from tears.

Mystery solved! I, too remember seeing the stars through my new lenses. I would have been about nine years old. Seeing stars, the real stars, was an awe-inspiring experience.

And speaking of awesome things, I have a giveaway for you! One of you lucky people (in the US or Canada) can win a signed copy of Lulu and the Duck in the Park, which is the first in the Lulu series.

Doesn't it look great? More info on the publisher's website.
To enter, please leave a comment on this post before midnight on April 1, 2013. What is your experience with glasses? Do you have them? Do you wish you did? My little sister wanted glasses so bad that she fibbed like a fisherman to get them and ended up with bifocals. I'm curious to hear your story.

The winner of the book will be announced right here! For more details, check out Everead's full giveaway policy.

The **NEW** Winner is KATE! Congratulations! Send your contact info to everead@gmail.com within the next two days to claim your prize.

For more from Hilary McKay, and more chances to win the book, visit the next stop on her blog tour, http://www.greenbeanteenqueen.com tomorrow.
______
Everead reviews of Hilary McKay books:
Saffy's Angel
Indigo's Star
Permanent Rose
Caddy Ever After
Caddy's World
Wishing for Tomorrow

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Recent reads! Several mini-reviews.

Year of the Dog grace lin
The Year of the Dog by Grace Lin
I read this lovely little book on the plane back from New York City and KidLitCon 2012. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Pacy is a grade-school girl from a Chinese American family. In The Year of the Dog we are introduced to her and her family, and see her "find herself" and find a friend. I understand from the talk I attended by Grace Lin that the book is largely autobiographical, but of course fictionalized. It is the first in a series marketed to 8-12 year olds, and I'd love to read more of them. My favorite parts were the stories that others (her mom, her grandpa) would tell her about things her relatives had done.


Vampirina Ballerina


Vampirina Ballerina by Anne Marie Pace, illustrated by LeUyen Pham
This is one of my favorite recent picture books. It is a how-to guide for aspiring ballerinas, but it follows a little vampire girl to ballet class and through minor monsterly mishaps to her performance as a cygnet in Swan Lake. My little boys adored it for the details in the illustrations -- her black cat always underfoot, the "healthy food" (blood!) she eats to keep her body strong. Overall, I'd say this is a charming pick for boys and girls ages 3 and up.

Penny and Her Song Kevin Henkes
Penny and Her Song by Kevin Henkes
You know Kevin Henkes already from Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse or from Chrysanthemum, or from one of scores of other delicious picture books he has written and/or illustrated. When I saw an early reader with his name and one of his cute mice on the front, I just snatched it right off the library shelf. Benjamin helped me read a few words, but really this one is still above his level (sight-word recognition only at this point). Anyway, in this volume, Penny makes up a clever song. She tries to sing it for her mother, but is put off until later. She tries to sing it for her Dad, but is told to wait. She almost forgets the song (!) but gets to sing it at last after dinner. I just love how the stakes get higher and higher throughout the book, and I love that the payoff is big. We also read Penny and Her Doll together, and I recently spotted and read Penny and Her Marble.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

OooOooh, Smekday movie!

Just found out that this is a thing. Apparently, the movie will be called "Happy Smekday!" That makes sense to me, as "The True Meaning of Smekday" would be a long movie title, and probably not a great fit, since it's supposed to be the title of Tip's essay for school. It looks like it's going to be animated, rather than live-action. I think it could make a great movie, but I hope it's done well!

Have you read The True Meaning of Smekday by Adam Rex? Would you see it as a movie? Smekday is one of my favorite books to lend out to friends. It's funny, poignant, hilarious, clean, and side-splitting. Also it makes me laugh.
________
Previous post about Smekday
(& thanks for the heads-up, Ashlee!)

Friday, February 15, 2013

Cybils winners!

Yesterday the 2012 Cybils winners were announced! I had the honor of being a judge in the second round of the graphic novels category. It was so much fun!

Here are the winners that we picked:

Young Adult: Friends with Boys by Faith Erin Hicks 
Middle Grade: Giants Beware by Jorge Aguirre and Rafael Rosado  
They're both great books, I promise! I plan to post my thoughts on them each soon.
Alysa

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

The Checklist Manifesto and other non-fiction

So lately I have noticed a shift in my personal reading habits. I have been more inclined than ever before to pick up non-fiction! That is rather new and sort of strange for me, and so for a while I was in a reading slump. No fiction book I tried would float my boat. Finally I realized that what I wanted was some good non-fiction. How novel! ;-)

I thoroughly enjoyed reading The Checklist Manifesto by Atul Gawande. I highly recommend it. It is short. It is fascinating. It teaches you about airplane pilots, building construction, and doctors. And, of course, it teaches you about checklists.

Gawande is an excellent writer. I found this book to be very nicely balanced between information and anecdote. Personal experiences he had made the facts meaningful, and the facts tied all the stories together. I confess I envied the author -- he pursued his interest (checklists) into all sorts of interesting places and physical spaces. I wonder what amazing things I could experience if I were writing a nonfiction book.

After reading this book, I'm convinced that checklists can be applied in many, many situations to prevent human error, circumvent misunderstandings and encourage communication. If this book sounds interesting to you, you should definitely pick it up.
Other nonfiction I've been reading and enjoying lately:



  • 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think by Laura Vanderkam. 
  • Momma Zen: Walking the Crooked Path of Motherhood by Karen Maezen Miller.
  • Happier at Home: Kiss More, Jump More, Abandon a Project, Read Samuel Johnson, and My Other Experiments in the Practice of Everyday Life by Gretchen Rubin
  • Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the New Girlie-Girl Culture by Peggy Orenstein
 



Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Austenland Movie Update!

Such exciting news! Austenland has been picked up for distribution! (Austenland -- you know, that movie, made out of that book by Shannon Hale? Produced by Stephenie Meyer of Twilight fame? Directed by Jerusha Hess who cowrote Napoleon Dynamite? Starred in by Keri Russell and Jane Seymour and Jennifer Coolidge and Bret McKenzie and all kinds of other funny and respectable actors?)

Haven't heard anything yet about when it will be in a theater near you or anything. But I will be ready to jump right into my seat as soon as I can! I heard it was well received at Sundance. :)

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Fairy Tales from the Brothers Grimm: Winner!

And the winner of this lovely book is ...

Maryann D.!

Hooray! I'll be contacting you shortly for mailing info. Thanks for commenting and for your fun holiday traditions everyone. Loved them!

Happy New Year!
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