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Friday, October 12, 2012
Thursday, July 19, 2012
The main criterion for my selection of my 52 favorite books ever, is "how long did this book stay with me after reading it, and how did it change me?"
Armageddon Summer is an intriguing novel. Each chapter is in the voice of either Marine or Jed. I always wonder if Jane Yolen and Bruce Coville each 'became' the girl and the boy and wrote to each other?
The world will end on Thursday, July 27, 2000. At least, that's what Reverend Beelson has told his congregation. Marina's mom believes him. So does Jed's dad.
That's why they drag their teen children to join the reverend's flock at a mountain retreat. From the mountaintop they will all watch the end of the world -- and then descend to begin the world anew. But this world has only just begun for Jed and Marina, two teenagers with more attitude than faith. Why should the world end now, when they've just fallen in love?
Told in alternating chapters from both Jed's and Marina's points of view, this first-ever collaboration between two masters of children's literature is a story about faith and friendship, love and loss . . . and the things that matter most at the End of the World.
A powerful read. It will make an interesting book club read for discussion in high school classes.
Sunday, March 4, 2012
Are you looking for bilingual books in both English and Spanish? Groundwood Books has a line of beautiful picture books with text in both languages on each page. Arroz con Leche or Rice Pudding and Talking With Mother Earth/Hablando con Madre Tierra, both by Jorge Argueta, are exquisitely illustrated poems. Author Jorge Luján wrote Tarde de invierno or Winter Afternoon, Colors!/Colores! and the rhythmic Rooster/Gallo. These books are a delight for any Kindergarten or primary grade and can serve both for bilingual students or anyone wanting to learn a new language. Check out: www.groundwoodbooks.com
Sunday, February 19, 2012
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
The Bite of the Mango by Mariatu Kamara with Susan McClelland is a riveting novel for older students. It is Mariatu's personal narrative of how war devastated her country and effected her personally when she was attacked by child rebels.
This is a powerful book to put in the hands of North American youth, to help them better understand the reality of war - what it can do to individuals and families.
Mariatu is now working with UNICEF and trying to better conditions for children in war-torn countries.
When I finished reading this well written novel I felt that I have to do something. Check out Mariatu's website: www.mariatufoundation.com to see what you can do to make a difference.
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Dogs Don't Eat Jam and Other Things Big Kids Know
by Sarah Tsiang, Illustrated by Qin Leng, Annick Press
An older sister shares her wisdom with her new born baby brother. If it wasn't for him, she wouldn't be a sister so he has already accomplished something grant. She guides him along in all of life's important lessons: how to learn to walk, how to outgrow the pacifier and how not to feed jam to the dog.
A lovely, fun story to read to the older sibling once a new baby comes along.
It will be even more important then, for a parent, to spend time with the first born. This book will allow a parent quality time to read together and also an opportunity to discuss the pro's and con's of being an older sibling.
A fun, recommended read for kids of all ages.