I already love Scaredy Squirrel, but now I can see I need to go back & read all of the Chester books! This is one of those rare books where all reI already love Scaredy Squirrel, but now I can see I need to go back & read all of the Chester books! This is one of those rare books where all readers need to read the entire copyright page. Too fun!...more
This made me laugh and laugh! I absolutely loved every page. This reminded me of David Weisner's The Three Pigs.
What a perfect story for reading aloudThis made me laugh and laugh! I absolutely loved every page. This reminded me of David Weisner's The Three Pigs.
What a perfect story for reading aloud at bedtime! Some parents may feel that this story is a bit too close to real life since they are involved in a similar type of bedtime routine every night. If so, they may not find the story of Interrupting Chicken quite as amusing as I do. :) I think children - especially those who love bedtime stories - would absolutely love this.
I LOVE David Ezra Stein's illustrations here - especially the different styles used for the bedtime stories (when little red chicken jumps in!), the chickens' house, and little red chicken's own book. Highly recommended!...more
I thought I had already read this, but I don't think I sat down and read every letter. This does take a little attention to the details of who is writI thought I had already read this, but I don't think I sat down and read every letter. This does take a little attention to the details of who is writing the letter and to whom they are writing. But I love the idea of fairy-tale characters writing letters to each other! The illustrations are filled with fun details that add dimension to the story....more
After a reading of "the dish ran away with the spoon," they didn't come back. The cat, the dog, and the cow who can jump go looking for them so that tAfter a reading of "the dish ran away with the spoon," they didn't come back. The cat, the dog, and the cow who can jump go looking for them so that their nursery rhyme can continue to be read. They come to a fork in the road (an actual fork wearing sunglasses and a Hawaiian shirt) who draws them a map showing several places the dish and spoon might have gone - such as Little Miss Muffet's house, Humpty Dumpty's Wall, and the house that Jack built. I particularly love the dog who says things like "Can't you see I'm dog-tired?" "Doggone it," "No bones about it," and "We're barking up the wrong tree." This has many subtle and some not-so-subtle references to nursery rhymes and some fairy tales for the clever reader to discover. This reminds me of David Wiesner's The Three Pigs. I recommend this for all children who are familiar with and love nursery rhymes and fairy tales!...more
I liked the premise of this a lot, and thought I would really like it. But it was much too slow in the beginning and read too much like a memoir. I waI liked the premise of this a lot, and thought I would really like it. But it was much too slow in the beginning and read too much like a memoir. I wanted her to get on to the action/mystery portion of the story! Once that happened, the story started to move and I enjoyed it much more. It made me want to reread some Sherlock Holmes mysteries. It's been much too long since I read any.
I'm giving this four stars even though 3.5 would be more accurate. The first really dragged for me and was about 2.5 stars for me. It slowly worked its way up to 3 stars and was at 4 stars by the end. I would be interested in reading more in this series sometime, but probably not right away....more
I didn't expect to enjoy this as much as I did. I didn't like American Gods much and expected that this would be pretty much the same for me. It wasn'I didn't expect to enjoy this as much as I did. I didn't like American Gods much and expected that this would be pretty much the same for me. It wasn't.
Of course Neil Gaiman did one thing that is guaranteed to make me start the book with a smile on my face - he dedicated it to me! I always like that.
I also really liked the characters and the solutions they found for their problems. I especially liked Maeve Livingstone and Daisy Day.
So, if you are looking for a well-written, VERY different type of retold fairy tale (or more accurately a retold myth) with some great characters and an interesting plot, this is the book for you....more
This is the book I should be using when I teach parts of a book! It could be used as a very fun and funny (and hopefully memorable) way to show titleThis is the book I should be using when I teach parts of a book! It could be used as a very fun and funny (and hopefully memorable) way to show title page, dedication page, table of contents and even endpapers. At one time I tried to read all of Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith's books, but somehow I missed this one until now. I definitely need to get a copy of this for my library. Not only do I need to be ready next time I teach parts of a book, but the stories and illustrations are completely wacky! I think many of my students would get a big kick out of this book. As I said, simply wacky and a lot of fun.
Note: Another book dedicated to me! I think that's three now. I might have to start a shelf for them. :)...more
**spoiler alert** Any book dedicated "to stubborn librarians everywhere" automatically rates five stars in my book! Although I would have given this b**spoiler alert** Any book dedicated "to stubborn librarians everywhere" automatically rates five stars in my book! Although I would have given this book five stars even without the dedication!
Triple Creek is a town that loves to watch TV. They even have pictures of their TV sets on their mantels. Eli's Aunt Charlotte doesn't have a TV in her house. She took to her bed 50 years earlier and has vowed never to leave it. She decides it is time to get up, though, when she learns that Eli doesn't know that stories come from books or even what reading is.
While I'm all for more reading and less TV, I'm glad that Polacco mentions keeping a balance. My favorite line is: "Understand, folks still had their TV's, all right, but they were wise about what they watched and for how long. They had so much else to do!" ...more
This one reminds me a lot of Flotsam by David Wiesner, only using a book instead of a camera to make the connection between children - although I guesThis one reminds me a lot of Flotsam by David Wiesner, only using a book instead of a camera to make the connection between children - although I guess this one really did come first. I love the idea of a book connecting children who are continents apart. My favorite picture was of the girl seeing the boy in her red book holding his red book seeing her. It sounds confusing, and makes much more sense in the picture....more
This is a book I wish I would have read with a group or in a class. I think I would have benefitted from reading it with others and discussing thingsThis is a book I wish I would have read with a group or in a class. I think I would have benefitted from reading it with others and discussing things like the themes and symbolisms while I was reading it. It reminded me a lot of Catch-22, yet this was easier to read and not quite as dark.
It contains lots of recurring things: the "Poo-tee-weet" sound of a bird, the barking of a dog, the blue and ivory color of cold or frozen feet, Three Musketeers (both as a group of three and as a candy bar), and the phrase that Tralfamadorians (the aliens who abduct Billy) say about dead people: "So it goes." Those are just the ones I noticed and remembered while reading. I'm sure there are many more to be found, although I'm not sure that all of these recurring things have deeper meaning.
The obvious Lost connection is Billy Pilgrim becoming unstuck in time and jumping around to different times of his life, just like Desmond. Because of this he knew things that would happen in the future, but unlike Desmond, he never tried to change anything - even his own death.
I don't think this book will ever be a favorite of mine, but I did find it very interesting. I think it is a book you could read again and again and still find new themes, symbolisms and connections.
I found the Tralfamadorian's way of seeing time very interesting: "All moments, past, present, and future, always have existed, always will exist. The Tralfamadorians can look at all the different moments just the way we can look at a stretch of the Rocky Mountains, for instance. They can see how permanent all the moments are, and they can look at any moment that interests them. It is just an illusion we have here on Earth that one moment follows another one, like beads on a string, and that once a moment is gone it is gone forever." ...more
I bought this at a Christian bookstore, which is not my normal place to shop for books. I enjoyed seeing titles and authors I had never heard of beforI bought this at a Christian bookstore, which is not my normal place to shop for books. I enjoyed seeing titles and authors I had never heard of before. From the blurb on the back, I thought Landon Snow and the Auctor's Riddle would be a fun, quick read. And it could have been if I would have liked it more! There was just something missing for me during the adventure/journey portion of the story. I would read a few pages and then close the book and find something else to do. Finally I had to force myself to sit down and finish it so I could move on to other books. I did like the beginning with Landon's family, the visit to the library, the concept of being swallowed by a giant book of meanings, and the way several verses from the Bible were worked into the story without being preachy. I also bought the second book in this series, but it won't be high on my list of "must read soon" books....more
My favorite in this trilogy is still Inkheart. I think I enjoyed this one slightly more than Inkspell. At some point I would like to go back and rereaMy favorite in this trilogy is still Inkheart. I think I enjoyed this one slightly more than Inkspell. At some point I would like to go back and reread all three of them back-to-back. I'm sure there are details and connections that I missed - little tidbits that aren't easily noticed until you know all three books. For example, the three words that must be written in the Adderhead's White Book are heart, spell, and death.
Speaking of death, Inkdeath is a very appropriate name for this book. There is quite a lot of death, killing, and some intense violence - some of it even against children. This book definitely isn't for young children. It also has some mild curse words throughout.
Probably my main complaint with this book, though, is that there are so many villains! They each have their own agenda, and only work together some of the time. Having multiple villains does provide some opportunities for interesting conflicts, but it also makes the overall conflict feel a bit scattered.
I've enjoyed this trilogy and recommend it for those who enjoy well-written and interesting fantasy with a book-lovers slant. (And don't forget to read the quotations included at the beginning of each chapter. Very interesting!)...more
This is something of a cross between the Spiderwick books and the Fablehaven books. Sabrina and Daphne Grimm find out that their family have been fairThis is something of a cross between the Spiderwick books and the Fablehaven books. Sabrina and Daphne Grimm find out that their family have been fairy-tale detectives since the time of the Brothers Grimm. All of the fairy-tale characters they've ever read about are real and living in Ferryport. As long as there is a Grimm living in Ferryport, a spell keeps all of the "Everafters" (fairy-tale characters) there. This is a measure to keep war from erupting between Everafters and humans. Of course many of the Everafters resent this and are looking for ways to break the spell.
I thought this was cute. Yet while it is a fun idea, somehow it just didn't pull me in as much as I would have liked. Although I did really enjoy the magic carpet ride! That part was really fun. I wouldn't mind reading another in this series sometime, but it won't be a top priority. I will recommend this to students who enjoyed Spiderwick and are ready to read something a little longer. Hopefully this series and others like it will encourage many children and adults to read more fairy tales! 3.5 stars....more
First let me say, Brad Sneed's illustrations are hilarious! They definitely add to the "must read" factor of this book. What boy isn't going to want tFirst let me say, Brad Sneed's illustrations are hilarious! They definitely add to the "must read" factor of this book. What boy isn't going to want to pick up a book that has a wolf sitting in school with two pencils up his nose on the front cover? :)
The idea of the story is also very humorous and off-beat! In Rufus's world, "correct" wolf behavior is huffing and puffing, wearing disguises, acting (like grandmothers or sheep), and learning sheep language. But Rufus likes to howl at the moon, turn over rocks, roll in the grass, and run like the wind. So his parents send him to Big Bad Wolf Academy where he can learn "correct" wolf behavior to be a big bad wolf.
This would be fun paired with some traditional folktales that include wolf characters such as The Three Little Pigs and Little Red Riding Hood. And it could also spark some discussion about real wolf behavior compared to storybook wolf behavior....more
What a weird, different book! I really didn't like it much at all - especially in the beginning. Every character was unpleasant and unlikeable. I guesWhat a weird, different book! I really didn't like it much at all - especially in the beginning. Every character was unpleasant and unlikeable. I guess that's the point, but I didn't enjoy reading it. When the Nanny came into the picture, things got better but not great. In the end I didn't hate it, but I didn't love it, either. The best part of the book was the glossary at the end - which was almost enough to bump it up to three stars, but not quite. I did like the candy bar naming bit, which made me laugh....more
The Indigo King is the third in The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica by James A. Owen. I think the first book, Here, There Be Dragons, is stiThe Indigo King is the third in The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica by James A. Owen. I think the first book, Here, There Be Dragons, is still my favorite, but The Indigo King is right up there with it.
There is a lot to keep track of here - with some characters having three or more names as we encounter them throughout history. I could have used a glossary of characters like the one included in Inkdeath. And, as with Inkdeath, I think I will want to read this one again sometime now that I know the ending. I know there were connections and references I didn't catch this first time through.
There were several questions that kept bothering me about the time travel, but they were explained by the end. Also, due to time traveling characters, I enjoyed seeing several modern phrases and references mentioned - such as a pennant displayed at a tournament of knights with a "blue and red circular design in the center and the words GO CUBS! on both sides" which is said to have represented "Triumph over Adversity, but now better represents Impossible Quests and Lost Causes." Made me chuckle. And now I'm off to add Mark Twain's A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court to my to-read list....more
What a fun series! I've been enjoying them myself, and I've also loved the reception they've been getting in my library. I haven't had to sell them toWhat a fun series! I've been enjoying them myself, and I've also loved the reception they've been getting in my library. I haven't had to sell them to the students at all. I just put The Anybodies on the "new" shelf, and it was immediately checked out. Soon I had several requests for the "Anybody" books. The Nobodies was also snatched up as soon as I put it out. And I had to put myself on the hold list for The Somebodies because I had so many requests for it before I had a chance to read it!
But you're probably wondering what I thought specifically of The Somebodies. Well, I enjoyed it a lot. Besides all the fun book references (which HAD to be there or I would have been disappointed), there were also a lot of interesting things about books in general - and how authors stitch their souls into books and that every time a reader finishes a book they love, they know the author's soul. But mostly I really liked the overall theme of this one: "The world is always changing, but there's a part of you that never changes. It's essentially you, and you can always rely on it to be true." And, "You've really got to be yourself in this life. You have to rely on something deep inside."...more
More "Anybody" fun with Fern and Howard, this time at a summer camp specifically for teaching young Anybodies how to use their powers. Only once theyMore "Anybody" fun with Fern and Howard, this time at a summer camp specifically for teaching young Anybodies how to use their powers. Only once they get to Camp Happy Sunshine Good Times, things are very different than they expected. This is a great sequel to The Anybodies with even more (and I wouldn't have thought it even possible) connections to classic children's literature. Now I'm off to find a copy of The Somebodies!...more