This is a kids' book, but I thought it looked interesting. I did a display of this series at a gross-out slime event at the library, and I thought thiThis is a kids' book, but I thought it looked interesting. I did a display of this series at a gross-out slime event at the library, and I thought this was one I just had to read.
It traces the history of the book from cuneiform on clay tablets to . . . well . . . a whole different kind of tablet. It's well worth reading, a good book for grade school children. It's also got a decent amount of humor interspersed. All in all, very nice....more
I did not expect to like this book so much, especially since I never thought of nuns as scary, and this book seemed, from the cover, to be little moreI did not expect to like this book so much, especially since I never thought of nuns as scary, and this book seemed, from the cover, to be little more than a collection of "scary" nun pictures. Reading it, though, I was surprised to see that it was more like an overview of the history of nuns. I learned about different reasons that women have joined since the early centuries AD, and I learned a little bit about different orders and how they have changed. The introduction even goes briefly into a feminist analysis of nun life, explaining the limited options of women centuries ago and the ways that convent life might have saved them from other unpleasant possibilities.
I particularly enjoyed some of the non-"scary" pictures, which appear throughout the book and which show some of the delightful, more "normal" aspects of these mysterious women. Nuns (wearing traditional habits) are ice skating, boxing, enjoying the rides at Disneyland, swimming, dancing, and drinking coffee. This book turned out to be pretty fun....more
This kids' book of lost treasure stories was pretty interesting. Even though it didn't initially look like my cup of tea, I found that I kept coming bThis kids' book of lost treasure stories was pretty interesting. Even though it didn't initially look like my cup of tea, I found that I kept coming back to it to read more. It's written in an almost conversational style, which I found very appealing; it's not condescending to kids and might even entertain some adults, too. Each short chapter is almost a vignette, focusing either on a real historical treasure or on the folklore surrounding a particular legend. I enjoyed reading about the lucky (but mostly not-so-lucky) treasure seekers whose exploits earned them a place in history. Where is the next big fortune? In your backyard? In a nearby cave? Under the neighbors' outhouse? With its mix of irony, humor, and legend, this book was a delightful surprise....more
This book was interesting, to say the least. It is divided into several chapters, each of which has its own distinctive flavor and style. It opens witThis book was interesting, to say the least. It is divided into several chapters, each of which has its own distinctive flavor and style. It opens with a story strongly based on the Gospels, followed by an old Christmas legend, then a sermon, then a war memoir, and finally by a Bible excerpt.
Parts of this volume are very preachy and almost off-putting. I do appreciate that this collection is from a very conservative family and parts of it are probably, to some degree, a product of the times. My least favorite part was the sermon, and this really surprised me--I have always been interested in theology, and I love Christmas. A Christmas sermon should have been right up my alley, so to speak. However, this sermon was so similar to so many that I've heard before, and it should win the prize, in my opinion, for being the only Christmas sermon I've ever encountered that isn't about Christmas. It's more about hell. Go figure.
That said, other parts of the book were delightful. The old Christmas legend was a bit of cultural history that I found fascinating, and the story was interesting in its own right, so that was a double win. Corrie's own memoir was powerful and moving, and the whole book would be worth it just for that chapter alone. It was also nice seeing her lightly fictionalized version of the Gospel story. The Bible excerpt was a beautiful close to a beautiful volume. Altogether, the book is marvelous. I borrowed this from the library, but if I ever find a copy for sale, I would buy it.
Since each chapter is a standalone, here are my separate ratings:
Part 1: The Bible story as Corrie told it (more like a story than direct quotes) 3.5 stars Part 2: An old Christmas story 5 stars Part 3: Sermon 2 stars Part 4: WWII 5 stars Part 5: Bible excerpt (I'm not rating the Bible (!) but I will say that it was a perfect close to a very special book)...more
This book is amazing. The author wrote it after his diagnosis with Alzheimer's disease, and I wasn't sure what I was expecting, but it certainly wasn'This book is amazing. The author wrote it after his diagnosis with Alzheimer's disease, and I wasn't sure what I was expecting, but it certainly wasn't this. I had always thought of Alzheimer's as kind of a slow death, with your mind shutting down and no possible recovery, and in a sense it is, but O'Brien demonstrates all the life that still endures through the various stages of this disease. As he says early on, it's not a book about dying of Alzheimer's, but about living with it. It's a manifesto; and an affirmation of self; and a painful acknowledgement of the fleeting nature of, well, everything; and most poignantly, a celebration of the delight of living. This is a memoir, but instead of chronicling his past, he's detailing his present and his inevitable future. He's doing more than marking time--he's living. And even as everything changes, even as his mind is destroyed, bit by bit, and he is further isolated from everyone (including himself), he's still there. As with any memoir, so much of the book's worth depends on the character of the author. Here, O'Brien's personality shines through, his warmth, his humor, his pain, his down-to-earth sensibilities--the whole package. I expected that this might be a good book for people to read who have friends or family with Alzheimer's disease. Now, I think it's a good book for anybody. Period.
I received this book for free from Goodreads firstreads giveaways....more
Oh, so many historical inaccuracies. The writing isn't the most objective, either, but I think he really tries. It's definitely interesting. Each chapOh, so many historical inaccuracies. The writing isn't the most objective, either, but I think he really tries. It's definitely interesting. Each chapter focuses on a different historical event. It's a good insight into the history of our fascination with the Bermuda Triangle, and it offers tantalizing stories of adventure and despair. Just don't take it as the final historical fact. Still, this book should get some credit for piquing my curiosity and making me want to research some of this in more depth....more
First of all, I want to clarify that this is NOT Tuesdays with Morrie. When I checked this out from the library and saw that it was a book by Mitch AlFirst of all, I want to clarify that this is NOT Tuesdays with Morrie. When I checked this out from the library and saw that it was a book by Mitch Albom called Tuesdays with Morrie, I assumed (silly me) that it was actually Mitch Albom's Tuesdays with Morrie. It's not. This is one of those situations where the same author writes two different books with almost identical titles. In this case, it's only the subtitle that's different, and even that change is slight.
In this book, Mitch reflects on his own childhood, his father, his frenzied work life, and his reunion with Morrie. He tells of his decision to start recording his Tuesday visits, of Morrie's decision stay at home and his subsequent medical expenses and debts, and the events since Morrie's death. We get to hear of Morrie's family's reaction to the book's success, and Mitch tells what will happen to the future profits from the book. There is also a brief question-and-answer session with Albom at the end.
Albom's lecture is sweet and poignant. The affection between these two men is evident, and Albom offers a few anecdotes about specific moments during the visits that stand out for him. Finally, he offers some pearls of wisdom, both profound and uplifting, about love, peace, and the joy of touching another life....more