Jack Gantos is not a newcomer to writing teen fiction. He is the author of the JOEY PIGZA SERIES,which is really funny. Dead End in Norvelt is the first of this series, and is just as entertaining. Here is some more info on this funny book.
Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos Melding the entirely true and the wildly fictional, Dead End in Norvelt is the story of an incredible two months for a boy named Jack Gantos, whose plans for vacation adventure are suddenly ruined when he is grounded by his feuding parents for what seems like forever.
But escape comes where Jack least expects it, once he begins helping an elderly neighbor with a most unusual chore—a chore involving the newly dead, molten wax, twisted promises, Girl Scout cookies, underage driving, lessons from history, obituaries, Hells Angels, and countless bloody noses. (Amazon.com)
About the Author: Jack Gantos was born in Pennsylvania and grew up in a town called Norvelt. He has lived in different places and has a very upside down view on life. An example: when he was a kid one of his favorite games was to pretend his clothes where on fire and went rolling down the hill to save himself, and his favorite reading spot was a broken down bookmobile behind a ball field. (jackgantos.com)
This author has a pretty funny imagination. Check out his website to find out more about his books and author information. (less)
In David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants, Malcolm Gladwell engages readers in situations with seemingly obvious answers and then turns what we think upside down. Consider the familiar story of David and Goliath. Was David’s victory improbable and miraculous?
In this book, Gladwell challenges our thinking about obstacles and disadvantages, discriminations and disabilities, and sufferings from setbacks. He moves from one example to another: Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth’s struggles in Birmingham, Northern Ireland’s troubles, cancer researchers, the cost of revenge, and the dynamics of classrooms, all demonstrate that what is good and important arise from suffering and adversity.
Clarence Birdseye, the developer of frozen food, described as curious, a problem solver and a tinkerer lived from 1886 to l956.
Mark Kurlansky’s Birdseye, The Adventures of a Curious Man covers Birdseye’s adventurous life, from searching for the source of Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, to fur trapping in Labrador, to developing frozen food for the consumer market.
Although frozen food may seem mundane, years of trial, error, disappointment and finally success were experienced by Birdseye before he finally marketed frozen food and freezers to supermarkets.
Kurlansky gives an honest assessment of Birdseye's views on hunting. An overly enthusiastic hunter, he must have had a cast iron stomach. Birdseye ate or tasted everything he killed, including rodents and snakes, in his quest for good tasting frozen food.
This book is an engaging look at the life of a man who was curious and developed products that we take for granted and changed the way we eat.
If you are a Downton Abbey fan, you will enjoy the...moreLady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey. The Lost Legacy of Highclere Castle. (view in HPL's catalog)
If you are a Downton Abbey fan, you will enjoy the story behind Highclere Castle, the real-life inspiration and setting for the award winning PBS show, and the life of one of its most famous inhabitants, Lady Almina, the 5th Countess of Carnarvon. It contrasts the splendor of Edwardian life in a great house against the backdrop of the First World War and gives a revealing picture of the woman at the center of the history of Highclere Castle.
Like the Masterpiece Classic character, Lady Cora Crawley, Lady Almina, the daughter of a wealthy industrialist, Alfred de Rothschild, was married at young age. Her dowry helped preserve the Earl of Carnarvon’s ancestral home. The book is based on material from the archives of Highclere Castle and written by the current Countess of Carnarvon, Lady Fiona Carnarvon, and covers roughly the years from 1895 to l930.
Antonio is a young law professor in Bogota, Colombia during the height of the drug violence of the Pablo Escobar era. Assassinations are a daily occurrence and the bogotanos live in fear. To escape the depression of the city, Antonio spends his time in his local pool hall where he meets a mysterious character named Ricardo. Ricardo has a past that he’d rather not talk about. He might have been a pilot at some point. He might have spent time in prison. Maybe one has something to do with the other. Just as Antonio is getting his new friend to fill in some pieces of his story, Ricardo is gunned down in the street. But Antonio won’t let him become just another assassination among many. He has to find out his story.
We follow Antonio on his adventures to find out the truth about his friend. Along the way we get to see Colombia and the effects of drug violence on the country. We see a man coping with the loss of a friend he barely knew and how his obsession with his friend’s past affects his career and family life. It’s a good read and the 2011 winner of the prestigious Alfaguara Prize for literature in Spanish. The mystery of Ricardo’s past is intriguing enough to keep the reader interested, although sometimes I felt like Vásquez wandered a little too far off the main story. There’s a lot of emotion in the book as we see the characters dealing with loss, fear, and despair about what has happened in the their country, but the sadness is interlaced with joy and love and a man’s commitment to a friend.
Think back to 2006. Do you remember the first time you heard that a group of astronomers had decided that Pluto was not a planet anymore? Remember tha...moreThink back to 2006. Do you remember the first time you heard that a group of astronomers had decided that Pluto was not a planet anymore? Remember that sad feeling of “Oh, poor Pluto” or maybe you got angry and thought, “Why are they picking on Pluto? What did Pluto do to anyone?” Now you have someone to blame. Meet Mike Brown, the astronomer who discovered “the tenth planet”, which ultimately led to the downfall of Pluto. In How I Killed Pluto and Why It Had It Coming, Brown raises the question of what exactly is a planet. You think that the answer would be simple, but Brown raises several important arguments that might change your views on the former planet. How I killed Pluto and Why It Had It Coming made me wish I had paid more attention in astronomy class in college. Who knew an astronomer could write so charmingly? By the end of the novel, I was rooting for Brown’s cause. This story is filled with intrigue, backstabbing, love, and even a baby. Sandra Tsing Loh said it right when she wrote, “Mike Brown is the funniest, smartest, and most surprisingly poetic Caltech astronomer who ever made my daughters cry. Certainly their happy nine-planet childhoods were worth sacrificing for this truly fascinating and engaging read.” Ms. Judith (less)
The beginning of an epic saga, Outlander will carry you off in a sweeping story. Gabaldon does a wonderful job of creating not only a powerful set of...moreThe beginning of an epic saga, Outlander will carry you off in a sweeping story. Gabaldon does a wonderful job of creating not only a powerful set of characters, but a beautiful love story. (less)
Mac is a feisty southern belle who travels to Dublin to solve and avenge her sister's murder. Once in Dublin, she realizes that her sister was in more...moreMac is a feisty southern belle who travels to Dublin to solve and avenge her sister's murder. Once in Dublin, she realizes that her sister was in more trouble she ever though possible. As Mac fights her way to solve this mystery she learns that there are creatures and elements that she only thought existed in fairytales. The biggest surprise of all is that she is part of this mysterious and deadly world. (less)
Though James did make a nice attempt at continuing the Darcys' story with a little mystery, tackling such an infamous couple might not have been the b...moreThough James did make a nice attempt at continuing the Darcys' story with a little mystery, tackling such an infamous couple might not have been the best idea. (less)