I'm not sure exactly when it happened, but it seems I'm no longer absolutely cool in my daughter's eyes. I could understand if her particular issues wI'm not sure exactly when it happened, but it seems I'm no longer absolutely cool in my daughter's eyes. I could understand if her particular issues with me were current fashion or "the" things to do while hanging out with friends, but books? BOOKS?!? Oh, the pain!
I don't say anything about the girly girl preteen drivel she loves to read (after all, I occasionally read girly girl grownup drivel) and I recommend a wide range of books (while keeping in mind she doesn't have the same penchant for sf/fantasy as I do.) She is a voracious reader, will happily read things her teacher recommends, and liked the books that 'Santa' gave her.
So why does she sneer every time I hand her a book? (well, she doesn't sneer *every* time, sometimes it's just a withering look or a "nah, I don't think so")
I'm not sure how I acquired this book, and it was one I hadn't read as a kid. I suggested that Maya and I read it together since we've been enjoying reading aloud at bedtime.
She read the blurb on the cover, handed it back to me and said "Nah."
I said, "Let's give it a shot."
"Oh, it's an award winner, isn't it...uh uh," she replied.
I then said, "Uh huh, we're giving this a shot."
Cue withering look.
The book quickly won her over. The short chapters are perfect for bedtime reading...we never had to stop in the middle of a chapter, and most nights read several chapters.
The author weaves together several plots. Each thread is connected, but he deftly gives us just the bits of information we need at any given point, and it all comes together at the end wonderfully. I loved when Maya would make a connection and exclaim, "Oh - those are Sam's onions!" or gasp, "Oh no! That's what really happened?!"
Final verdict? She loved it, and so did I.
Apparently I am capable of choosing good books.
Not that she'll remember that when I hand her the next book....more
You should have seen the look on my daughter's face when I picked this book up and said we were going to read it together -- it said "yeah, right....tYou should have seen the look on my daughter's face when I picked this book up and said we were going to read it together -- it said "yeah, right....that's huge" I had been wanting to read this myself, and when I insisted (and showed her how many of the pages were actually illustrations) she relented.
I thought the format of the book was just lovely. The illustrations really added a depth to the story, in places showing things not actually in the text.
I found the story bittersweet and the Parisian 1930's setting intriguing. Maya and I would finish a couple of chapters before bed and she would complain, "You can't stop there....we have to find out what happens next....that's an awful place to stop!" Of course I would see that there were only a few pages of actual text in the next chapter, give in and read that chapter only to hear, "No, you can't stop there either!"
I love when she has to admit I picked out a great book!...more
This was a fun book to read with my 10 year old daughter. It takes a lot of the typical "scary story" elements and turns them around into the "safe" pThis was a fun book to read with my 10 year old daughter. It takes a lot of the typical "scary story" elements and turns them around into the "safe" part of the story.
I also love how Gaiman uses challenging vocabulary (Maya giggled several times at words that I wasn't sure how to pronounce, and a couple we had to look up)
While this is basically a book of short stories centered around Bod Owens as he grows up, they are very interconnected with early events and characters playing important parts in later sections.
I absolutely loved it (and I think Maya did too....I'll have to get her to write a review :) Tonight we started bedtime reading early so we could read the last 60 pages in one sitting. Very engrossing....more
There were a lot of things I liked about this book, but also a few things I didn't like.
1. The Fantasy Element - I was impressed with the djiThere were a lot of things I liked about this book, but also a few things I didn't like.
1. The Fantasy Element - I was impressed with the djinn folklore that was used as the basis of the story. It seemed well researched and was used intelligently, and I liked the references to literature such as The Arabian Nights, and the New Oxford Book of Verse (My daughter now wants to check out those books :)
2. Strong Protagonists - John and Philippa are strong, smart children who show quick thinking, teamwork, and problem solving skills.
3. Humorous Supporting Characters - genial Uncle Nimrod, xenophobic Mr. Groanin, and wise, meek Mr. Rakshasas made me smile.
1. The Pacing - UGH, in the first half of the book almost *nothing* happens! Lots of talking, lots of instruction about djinn history and what they are. I felt like I was reading my daughter a mythology article. The last third of the book, the action picks up and it gets more enjoyable.
2. The Writing - I won't say that the writing was all bad, but some of the dialog was a bit stilted and not particularly realistic for the 12 year old siblings. It helped to read it out loud with a child's tone of voice, but it just wasn't quite right. Some of the paragraphs were a bit convoluted and it was tough to get the right phrasing the first time when reading aloud.
Overall I enjoyed the book. I hope that some of my complaints are a symptom of this being the first book in the series with exposition being a necessary evil. My 10 year old daughter really enjoyed it (in fact, when she read my review, she told me that she completely disagreed with my criticism) so we will be giving the second book a chance. ...more
What a beautiful story. I read it with my 8 year old daughter and more than once it brought a tear to my eye. It is the story of Edward Tulane, the chWhat a beautiful story. I read it with my 8 year old daughter and more than once it brought a tear to my eye. It is the story of Edward Tulane, the china rabbit, who while passing from owner to owner (companions really, as he comes to love them) endures great love and great tragedy. He learns that no matter what happens in life it is most important to open your heart....let yourself love and be loved....more
I really enjoyed reading this book, and my 7 year old daughter is liking it as well. Although it written for an older child (she asks for additional eI really enjoyed reading this book, and my 7 year old daughter is liking it as well. Although it written for an older child (she asks for additional explanations and definitions frequently), she and I love the zany characters and the situations they get themselves in.
The Onyx Sun has a good mix of fun characters, action, humor, and science fiction.