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wild girls

The Wild Girls 2007

The Wild Girls by Pat Murphy I spend a lot of time recommending books, and I recommend this one a lot, but I never seem to get any better at describing it. And by better I mean, in particular, tidy, linear, clear, professional. Here’s my best ‘professional’ take on The Wild Girls: The story takes [...]

August 31st, 2011
Lightning Thief

The Lightning Thief 2005

The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan Harry Potter and Percy Jackson. Wizard and demigod son of Poseidon. These two boys are the great literary icons of children’s literature at present. I’m Team Harry. Like many kids (and adults), I have been caught up in the epic sweep of the Harry Potter series. The publication of [...]

August 29th, 2011
little house cover

The Little House 1942

The Little House by Virginia Lee Burton At its heart The Little House is about finding a place in the world where you are loved. Every time I read it to my kids, I tear up at the happy ending. It’s a beautiful, if sentimental, story that stars not a child or family but a [...]

August 24th, 2011
LostLakeEtching

The Lost Lake 1989

The Lost Lake by Allen Say When I was five, my mum gave me a copy of The Lost Lake by Allen Say.  For years it was one of my favorite books.  It had a very special feeling to it, not only because it was one of my mum’s favorite picture books, but also because [...]

August 22nd, 2011
bargain for frances cover

A Bargain for Frances 1970

A Bargain for Frances by Russell Hoban; illustrated by Lillian Hoban As a mom of two daughters, I spend a fair amount of time thinking about how children, girls in particular, interact with each other and worrying about how catty they can be. Believe me, it starts surprisingly early, and A Bargain for Frances does [...]

August 17th, 2011
mufaro

Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters: an African Tale 1987

Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters: an African Tale by John Steptoe When you’re young, folk and fairy tales are everywhere. Brief enough for short-attention spans and unusual enough to capture imaginations, folk tales provide the perfect medium for learning about cultural history and life lessons. My parents brought an assortment of folk tales home for my sister [...]

August 15th, 2011
moomintroll in hat

Finn Family Moomintroll 1958

Finn Family Moomintroll by Tove Jansson When I was 9, we moved from the village I was born in to a large town. It was doubly traumatizing for my older sister, as she had to change from a small rural school to a large urban secondary school (a British equivalent to middle and high school). [...]

August 10th, 2011
Borders

Borders and the Book World

Recently, there’s been much ado about the book world as  Borders, one of the largest national book retail chains, closes its doors for good. Below are links to recent articles discussing Borders’ closure and what it means for the book world. From Publisher’s Weekly (7/29/11) “Fatal Mistakes: Borders Pounded the Nails in its Own Coffin” [...]

August 8th, 2011