This is the prequel novel to his Sword of Truth series. This book takes place before the boundaries go up and follows the story of Abby who believes t...moreThis is the prequel novel to his Sword of Truth series. This book takes place before the boundaries go up and follows the story of Abby who believes that the First Wizard, Zedd owes her a debt. She travels to the Wizard's Keep to make good on that debt and finds herself in the middle of a raging war. Zedd is trying to save the Midlands from the tyranny of Panis Rahl and has had unspeakable tragedy fall on his family. Abby is trying to save her daughter and family who have been captured by Panis Rahl and his minions. Well, the plot thickens and Zedd agrees to help by unleashing magic that has not been tested or seen since the great Wizard's war thousands of year prior but only after Abby inadvertently helps Zedd save his family.
This is a wonderful read if you have read other books in the Sword of Truth series. If you haven't then I think that some of the things in the book would be lost to the reader who would want a better explanation as to what is happening. Start with Wizard's First Rule and read it (and possible a few more in the series) before coming back to this one. You won't be disappointed.(less)
No Talking by Andrew Clements is one of those rare books that comes along that are so enthralling that you can't help but be pleased no matter what is...moreNo Talking by Andrew Clements is one of those rare books that comes along that are so enthralling that you can't help but be pleased no matter what is happening. This is one of the true gems of children's literature. I admit to being an Andrew Clements fan. Since first reading Frindle where the character renames a pen, I have enjoyed his stories. Most take place in a school and have characters in 4th to 6th grade. No Talking is no exception. The basis for the book is that Dave reads a story about Gandhi and that he took a vow of silence and was able to think more and get in touch with life more. Dave takes this lesson to heart and decides on his own vow of silence. Well, pretty soon, the entire 5th grade becomes involved is a boys versus girls rivalry on who can say the least amount of words. The principal becomes overly concerned with the rowdy 5th grade class suddenly becoming quite-angel students. Another teacher thinks this is a great project and enjoys all the challenges as he's writing his thesis. Eventually everyone comes to terms and the book get across a great moral story.
If you're looking for an easy read with a great story, then this is the book for you. Your kids will love the quirky characters and it will be very personable to them.(less)
The Christmas Sweater by Glenn Beck was a wonderful read. It follow the story of Eddie who wants more than anything to have a bike for Christmas. Chri...moreThe Christmas Sweater by Glenn Beck was a wonderful read. It follow the story of Eddie who wants more than anything to have a bike for Christmas. Christmas comes and instead of a bike, he get a handmade sweater. He is mad at his mom for not having enough money to buy a bike. On the way home from Eddie's grandparent's house, his mom falls asleep at the wheel and dies. Eddie then goes to live with his grandparents. He blames a lot of people for what has happened in his life, meets a new friend with money who he envies, and becomes bitter. He generally screws up his life but eventually finds his way back.
Without giving too much away, Eddie's story is wonderful. A couple times I wanted to smack the kid up one side and down the other because he was over the top and out of line, but that made the story that much more enjoyable. There are many underlying themes in the book and I was very impressed with the story. Overall a great read for anyone who wants a heartwarming story with a good moral message.(less)
The Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling is a follow up to her very popular Harry Potter series. Actually, it is a book of five children's fairy t...moreThe Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling is a follow up to her very popular Harry Potter series. Actually, it is a book of five children's fairy tales told to wizard children but penned with comments by Hermione Granger and Albus Dumbledore for the muggle world. I enjoyed them because of the tie-in to the book, but I was not overly impressed with them. In fact, I was a bit disappointed by the lack of content in them and the short length. My overall impression was that this should have remained part of the final book and not a book in and of itself. I will admit that this is a very quick read (30-60 min tops) and that it is something that doesn't take a lot of brain power, but still I didn't find the usual enjoyment that I found with the Harry Potter series itself. I guess nothing can measure up to the original series. (I've never found the published Harry Potter textbooks to be that interesting either). If you're looking for something light and easy for your kids and they love Harry Potter, then this is the book. If you're wanting to try something new, then stay away from this.
As far as content, the fairy tales did have some relevance and I did somewhat enjoy the commentary by Dumbledore, but I wasn't overly impressed and obsessed with the book.
* "The Wizard and the Hopping Pot" was just stupid * "The Fountain of Fair Fortune" was really the one I liked the best * "The Warlock's Hairy Heart" is just downright creepy * "Babbitty Rabbitty and Her Cackling Stump" was amusing and funny * "The Tale of Three Brothers" was disappointing as it didn't live up to the hype generated in the book
So there you have it. Hope that you find some useful bit of info from this babble and come to your own conclusion on whether this is a good read or just a simple flop. As for me, I won't be rushing out to the bookstore to get a copy for myself--better to leave the series as it stands.(less)
This was a very good read about saving money on groceries. Teri Gault is the founder to "The Grocery Game" website which is a subscription based servi...moreThis was a very good read about saving money on groceries. Teri Gault is the founder to "The Grocery Game" website which is a subscription based service to help you save money. I do not subscribe to the website, but the basic idea in the book and behind the website is not to buy things on sale, but to buy them when they are a bargain. Stock up on your bargain items and use your stock to make meals for your family. Add coupons to the bargain items, and you've got yourself a real deal! For example, if name brand peanut butter is at the bargain price of $1, buy 5-6 peanut butters and then use those until it is a bargain again rather than going to the store when you are out of or running low on peanut butter and it is only "on sale" for $2.50. She offers good advice on how often things are on sale, how to rotate the stock you will build, how to stack coupons, choose your grocery store, and play the grocery game. She also offers some easy recipes for cheap meals that you can make ahead and use throughout the week.
I enjoyed this easy read and if you are looking for practical advice on how to save money on groceries, this is a good place to start. Overall, the book didn't give me all that much information and had a lot of unnecessary chapters (like on on planning for parties). While it was not a marketing tactic for her website, though she does promote it, I have subscribed to her website and found it very helpful to save extra money each week on groceries.(less)