Sunday, December 31, 2006

Hard to believe that this is the last day of 2006. I've spent the
morning loading booktalks to my site. I had such good intentions of
doing more reading during my week off. But I have a miserable cold.
As much as I tried to do more reading, I kept falling asleep. I did
get through a few very good books though. Now if only my voice would
come back so I could record some podcasts!

I wish one and all a very peaceful and prosperous new year.

Booktalks :

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Poet Slave of Cuba

Christmas morning was a haze of ribbons and wrapping paper. The grandsons had to be awakened at 7:30 so we could get on with it! I have been up since 6:00 reading the paper and getting things ready. The three year old was really into the presents this year. The 22 month old was happy just to sit on his new bicycle and didn't really care about the rest of the presents. If only they could stay like that!! In the afternoon, children and grandchildren left to visit family and friends leaving me to get the dinner ready. I really didn't mind. After the turkey was in the oven, I put on the fireplace, made a cup of tea and had the rest of the afternoon just to sit and read. It was the best Christmas present I got!!

One book that I had been wanting to read but wanted a quiet chunk of time was Poet Slave of Cuba. I am so glad that I found the right time to read it. It will definitely be going on my best of 2006 list. And now the kids are all out at the after Christmas sales so I again have some quiet time to do more reading. I should be doing so many other things but I am treating myself now. So, off to make a cup of tea, start the fire and curl up with a good book. Ah, life is good!

Engle, Margarita.
New York : Henry Holt, 2006.
IL 5-8, RL 4.8
ISBN 0805077065
Juan Francisco Manzano was a rather remarkable child by any standards. The fact that he was a slave in Cuba during the nineteenth-century adds to the incredible story. Told in verse, this is the story of Juan's life as he lives as a slave to several owners in Cuba. His first mistress treats him as a pet and enjoys showing him off. Juan can memorize poetry and opera and even the works of Homer and recite for the amuzment of those around him. Although his mistress treats him well, he is still a slave. His mistress frees Juan's parents and promises Juan's freedom when she dies. But this does not happen and Juan is taken by a cruel mistress who both loves and despises Juan. Through it all, Juan composes poetry that reflect both the beauty he sees and the horror he endures.

SUBJECTS: Manzano, Juan Francisco, 1797-1854 -- Poetry.
American poetry.
Slaves -- Poetry.
Poets -- Poetry.
Cuba -- Poetry.

Monday, December 25, 2006

The Braid by Helen Frost

This one will definitely be making my best of 2006 list. I love
Helen Frost's work and this is certainly no exception. Having family
in Ireland, I have read much and heard much about the Irish Famine in
the 1850s. I haven't heard as much about the Scottish resettlements
of those days though. After reading this book, I now have to do a
bit of research on that situation. I loved this book!

Frost, Helen.
New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2006
ISBN 0374309620
We often hear of the potato famine in Ireland and how the people were
forced off their land.
We don't often hear about what was happening in Scotland during the
same time period.
Families were being forced off their land so that wealthy land barons
could use the land for
grazing sheep. Families were often forced onto boats to Canada and
left their homes with little
more than the clothes on their backs. Jeannie and Sarah find
themselves in this situation. Their
family is leaving for Canada and have sold everything in order to
have money for the trip. But
Sarah runs away and hides so she doesn't have to go. Instead she and
her grandmother head out
to a tiny island that was home to her grandparents many years
before. Although life is hard in
Scotland, Jeannie and the rest of the family are in must dire
straights in Cape Breton. Father
and two of the daughters die on the voyage. This leave Jeannie, her
mother and her baby
brother trying to find a home in Canada. They face starvation,
homelessness and scorn from
locals on the way. Through it all, the sisters never stop thinking
about each other.

SUBJECTS: Sisters -- Fiction.
Family life -- Fiction.
Islands -- Fiction.
Mingulay (Scotland) -- History -- 19th
century -- Fiction.
Emigration and immigration -- Fiction.
Cape Breton Island (N.S.) -- History -- 19th
century -- Fiction.
Scotland -- History -- 19th century -- Fiction.
Canada -- History -- 1841-1867 -- Fiction.
Historical fiction.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Happy Holidays to All

Even though it is warm outside and we have absolutely no chance for
snow before Christmas, I am trying to keep the Christmas spirit! So
to one and all, I wish you the very merriest holiday. And I wish you
time to curl up by the fire and read a really good book!!

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Gail Giles does it again!

Giles, Gail.
Boston : Little, Brown, 2006
ISBN 0316166383
Keep calm. Take slow breaths. Keep him talking. I need to do
everything I can to get out of this. Use all my skills. My father
taught me well. He could talk people into anything. And I
need to do some serious talking now. Don't panic. Say the right
things. Focus. Block it out. Stop thinking about where I
am. Stop remembering that I am buried underground with only
Kyle knowing where I am. Stop remembering that Kyle wants me to
suffer. Stop remembering that Kyle wants me to die.

Pick this book up and recommend it to every teen you know. This one
is a sure winner!!

Friday, December 08, 2006

New Hampshire Ladybug Award Announced

The winner of the 2006 New Hampshire Ladybug Picture Book Award is I Ain't Gonna Paint No More! by Karen Beaumont and illustrated by David Catrow. What a great choice the kids made!

My new comic hero is George, the star of Being Five. Picture a five-year-old blogger. Give it a look.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Congratulations to Casey Bisson

"Casey Bisson, information architect for Plymouth State University’s Lamson
Library, has received the prestigious Mellon Award for Technology
Collaboration for his ground-breaking software application known as WPopac.
The WPopac software will revolutionize the online search process by
allowing titles and descriptions of library holdings to be found on the

This is so exciting. If you haven't checked out Casey's WPopac, take a
look. I've been putting my personal
library on LibraryThing which has a similar philosophy as Casey. OPACs
don't have to be boring! I am now trying to find a way to put my school
library opac on LibraryThing as well. The times they are achangin'.

mail2web - Check your email from the web at .

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Website updated

I have uploaded the December update to my website. In this month's
updates, you'll find the Pennsylvania award nominees. I love seeing
what other states are nominating for their children's choice
awards. There are some awesome books on the list.

I've also included Cynthia and Greg Leitich Smth's new book. Santa
Knows is a cute book about believing in Santa. I am going to love
sharing this one with kids (and adults).

Michael Sullivan's new book, Escapade Johnson and Mayhem at Mount
Moosilauke, is included this month as well. I've known Michael for
years and it is great to see him publishing his books. This is the
first in a new series geared to upper elementary boys. I'm looking
forward to the next book. Congratulations, Michael!

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Horn Book Fanfare List

Horn Book Fanfare list has been posted. Get it at

I was happy to see some of my favorites make the list. I'm making my
list and love seeing what others are thinking. Horn Book picks that
I have on my list (so far). I'm sure more will appear as my list
gets finalized.

Marvelous Mattie by Emily Arnold
Mama by Jeanette Winter
John, Paul, George, and Ben by Lane Smith
Ballet of the Elephants by Leda Schubert
Freedom Walkers by Russell Freedman
An Abundance of Katherines by John Green
Clay by David Almond
Flotsam by David Wiesner

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Best Books Lists

This is the time of year that many of us start
thinking about our favorite books of the
year. As I put together my list, I like to look
at what others have chosen for the best book
lists. SLJ has a very long list but I can't say
I see one that I didn't like. Kirkus' list is
shorter and must be harder to prepare! And I
like looking at the Shortbread list from the UK
to see what teens are enjoying overseas.

SLJ Best Books of

ANDERSON, M. T. The Astonishing Life of Octavian
Nothing, Traitor to the Nation: Volume I: The Pox
Party. Candlewick. Tr $17.99. ISBN 0-7636-2402-0.
BANKS, Kate. Max’s Words. illus. by Boris
Kulikov. Farrar/Frances Foster Bks.Tr $16. ISBN 0-374-39949-2.
BEST, Cari. Sally Jean, the Bicycle Queen. illus.
by Christine Davenier. Farrar/Melanie Kroupa Bks. Tr $16. ISBN 0-374-35386-2.
BOYCE, Frank Cottrell. Framed. HarperCollins. Tr
$16.99. ISBN 0-06-073402-7; PLB $17.89. ISBN 0-06-073403-5.
BROOKS, Kevin. The Road of the Dead.
Scholastic/The Chicken House. Tr $16.99. ISBN 0-439-78623-1.
BRUCHAC, Joseph. Wabi: A Hero’s Tale. Dial. Tr $16.99. ISBN 0-8037-3098-5.
CARBONE, Elisa. Blood on the River: James Town
1607. Viking. Tr $16.99. ISBN 0-670-06060-7.
CHILD, Lauren. But Excuse Me That Is My Book.
illus. by author. Dial. RTE $16.99. ISBN 0-8037-3096-9.
CHILD, Lauren, adapt. The Princess and the Pea.
photos. by Polly Borland. illus. by adapter.
Hyperion. RTE $16.99. ISBN 0-7868-3886-8.
DICAMILLO, Kate. The Miraculous Journey of Edward
Tulane. illus. by Bagram Ibatoulline. Candlewick.
Tr $18.99. ISBN 0-7636-2589-2.
DRAPER, Sharon M. Copper Sun. S & S/Atheneum. Tr $16.95. ISBN 0-689-82181-6.
EILENBERG, Max, retel. Beauty and the Beast.
illus. by Angela Barrett. Candlewick. RTE $17.99. ISBN 0-7636-3160-4.
FISHER, Valorie. How High Can a Dinosaur Count?:
And Other Math Mysteries. illus. by author.
Random/Schwartz & Wade Bks. Tr $16.95. ISBN
0-375-83608-X; PLB $18.99. ISBN 0-375-93608-4.
FLEISCHMAN, Sid. Escape!: The Story of the Great
Houdini. HarperCollins/Greenwillow. Tr $18.99.
ISBN 0-06-085694-9; PLB $19.89. ISBN 0-06-085095-7.
FRADIN, Judith Bloom & Dennis Brindell Fradin.
5,000 Miles to Freedom: Ellen and William Craft’s
Flight from Slavery. National Geographic. Tr
$19.95.ISBN 0-7922-7885-2; PLB $29.90. ISBN 0-7922-7886-0.
FREEDMAN, Russell. The Adventures of Marco Polo.
illus. by Bagram Ibatoulline. Scholastic/Arthur
A. Levine Bks. RTE $17.99. ISBN 0-439-52394-X.
FREEDMAN, Russell. Freedom Walkers: The Story of
the Montgomery Bus Boycott. Holiday House. Tr $18.95. ISBN 0-8234-2031-0.
FROST, Helen. The Braid. Farrar/Frances Foster
Bks. Tr $16. ISBN 0-374-30962-0.
GARDEN, Nancy. Endgame. Harcourt. Tr $16. ISBN 0-15-205416-2.
GOING, K. L. Saint Iggy. Harcourt. Tr $17. ISBN 0-15-205795-1.
HARDINGE, Frances. Fly by Night. HarperCollins.
Tr $16.99. ISBN 0-06-087627-1; PLB $17.89. ISBN 0-06-087629-8.
HENKES, Kevin. Lilly’s Big Day. illus. by author.
HarperCollins/Greenwillow. Tr $15.99. ISBN
0-06-074236-4; PLB $16.89. ISBN 0-06-074237-2.
HIMMELMAN, John. Chickens to the Rescue. illus.
by author. Holt. RTE $16.95. ISBN 0-8050-7951-3.
HOPKINSON, Deborah. Up before Daybreak: Cotton
and People in America. Scholastic Nonfiction. Tr
$18.99. ISBN 0-439-63901-8. (June)
JENKINS, Emily. Toys Go Out: Being the Adventures
of a Knowledgeable Stingray, a Toughy Little
Buffalo, and Someone Called Plastic. illus. by
Paul O. Zelinsky. Random/Schwartz & Wade Bks. Tr
$16.95. ISBN 0-375-83604-7; PLB $18.99. ISBN 0-375-93604-1.
JOHNSON, Harriet McBryde. Accidents of Nature.
Holt. Tr $16.95. ISBN 0-8050-7634-4.
KLASS, David. Firestorm. Farrar/Frances Foster
Bks. Tr $17. ISBN 0-374-32307-0.
KNUDSEN, Michelle. Library Lion. illus. by Kevin
Hawkes. Candlewick. RTE $15.99. ISBN 0-7636-2262-1.
KRULL, Kathleen. Isaac Newton. illus. by Boris
Kulikov. Viking. Tr $15.99. ISBN 0-670-05921-8.
LARSON, Kirby. Hattie Big Sky. Delacorte. Tr
$15.95. ISBN 0-385-73313-5; PLB $17.99. ISBN 0-375-90332-4.
LEVINE, Gail Carson. Fairest. HarperCollins. Tr
$16.99. ISBN 0-06-073408-6; PLB $17.89. ISBN 0-06-073409-4.
LEWIS, J. Patrick. Black Cat Bone: The Life of
Blues Legend Robert Johnson. illus. by Gary
Kelley. Creative Editions. Tr $19.95. ISBN 1-56846-194-1.
LOOK, Lenore. Ruby Lu, Empress of Everything.
illus. by Anne Wilsdorf. S & S/Atheneum/Anne
Schwartz Bks. RTE $15.95. ISBN 0-689-86460-4.
LUPTON, Hugh & Daniel Morden. The Adventures of
Odysseus. illus. by Christina Balit. Barefoot. Tr $19.99. ISBN 1-84148-800-3.
LYGA, Barry. The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy
and Goth Girl. Houghton. Tr $16.95. ISBN 0-618-72392-7.
MCCARTHY, Meghan. Aliens Are Coming!: The True
Account of the 1938 War of the Worlds Radio
Broadcast. illus. by author. Knopf. Tr $16.95.
ISBN 0-375-83518-0; PLB $18.99. ISBN 0-375-93518-5.
MCLEOD, Bob. SuperHero ABC. illus. by author.
HarperCollins. Tr $15.99. ISBN 0-06-074514-2; PLB $16.89. ISBN 0-06-074515-0.
MARCUS, Leonard S., ed. & comp. The Wand in the
Word: Conversations with Writers of Fantasy.
Candlewick. RTE $19.99. ISBN 0-7636-2625-2.
MONTGOMERY, Sy. Quest for the Tree Kangaroo: An
Expedition to the Cloud Forest of New Guinea.
photos. by Nic Bishop. Houghton. Tr $18. ISBN 0-618-49641-6.
MORRISON, Taylor. Wildfire. illus. by author.
Houghton/Walter Lorraine Bks. Tr $17. ISBN 0-618-50900-3.
MURDOCK, Catherine Gilbert. Dairy Queen. Houghton. Tr $16. ISBN 0-618-68307-0.
PATENT, Dorothy Hinshaw. The Buffalo and the
Indians: A Shared Destiny. illus. by William
Muñoz. Clarion. Tr $18. ISBN 0-618-48570-8.
PENNYPACKER, Sara. Clementine. illus. by Marla
Frazee. Hyperion. RTE $14.99. ISBN 0-7868-3882-5.
PINKNEY, Jerry. The Little Red Hen. illus. by
author. Dial. RTE $16.99. ISBN 0-8037-2935-9.
PITZER, Susanna. Not Afraid of Dogs. illus. by
Larry Day. Walker. Tr $16.95. ISBN 0-8027-8067-9;
RTE $17.85. ISBN 0-8027-8068-7. LC 2005027500.
RAMPERSAD, Arnold & David Roessel, eds. Langston
Hughes. illus. by Benny Andrews. Sterling. PLB $14.95. ISBN 1-4027-1845-4.
REEVE, Philip. Larklight: A Rousing Tale of
Dauntless Pluck in the Farthest Reaches of Space.
illus. by David Wyatt. Bloomsbury. Tr $16.95. ISBN 1-59990-020-3.
ROY, Jennifer. Yellow Star. Marshall Cavendish. Tr $16.95. ISBN 0-7614-5277-X.
SHUSTERMAN, Neal. Everlost. S & S. Tr $16.95. ISBN 0-689-87237-2.
SIEGEL, Siena Cherson. To Dance: A Ballerina’s
Graphic Novel. illus. by Mark Siegel. S &
S/Atheneum/Richard Jackson Bks. RTE $17.95. ISBN
0-689-86747-6; pap. $9.99. ISBN 1-4169-2687-9.
SÍS, Peter. Play, Mozart, Play! illus. by author.
HarperCollins/Greenwillow. Tr $16.99. ISBN
0-06-112181-9; PLB $17.89. ISBN 0-06-112182-7.
SMEE, Nicola. Clip-Clop. illus. by author. Boxer
Bks., dist. by Sterling. Tr $18.95. ISBN 1-905417-09-8.
SMITH, Lane. John, Paul, George & Ben. illus. by
author. Hyperion. RTE $16.99. ISBN 0-7868-4893-6.
STANLEY, Diane. Bella at Midnight. illus. by
Bagram Ibatoulline. HarperCollins. Tr $15.99.
ISBN 0-06-077573-4; PLB $16.89. ISBN 0-06-077574-2.
STEVENSON, Robert Louis. The Moon. illus. by
Tracey Campbell Pearson. Farrar. Tr $16. ISBN 0-374-35046-9.
STURTEVANT, Katherine. A True and Faithful
Narrative. Farrar. Tr $17. ISBN 0-374-37809-6.
TODD, Mark & Esther Pearl Watson. Whatcha Mean,
What’s a Zine?: The Art of Making Zines and
Mini-Comics. illus. by authors. Houghton/Graphia.
pap. $12.99. ISBN 0-618-56315-6.
TURNER, Megan Whalen. The King of Attolia.
HarperCollins/Greenwillow. Tr $16.99. ISBN
0-06-083577-X; PLB $17.89. ISBN 0-06-083578-8.
VAN LEEUWEN, Jean. Benny & Beautiful Baby
Delilah. illus. by LeUyen Pham. Dial. RTE $16.99. ISBN 0-8037-2891-3.
WALKER, Paul Robert. Remember Little Bighorn:
Indians, Soldiers, and Scouts Tell Their Stories.
National Geographic. Tr $17.95. ISBN
0-7922-5521-6; PLB $27.90. ISBN 0-7922-5522-4.
WEATHERFORD, Carole Boston. Moses: When Harriet
Tubman Led Her People to Freedom. illus. by Kadir
Nelson. Hyperion/Jump at the Sun. RTE $15.99. ISBN 0-7868-5175-9.
WERLIN, Nancy. The Rules of Survival. Dial. Tr $16.99. ISBN 0-8037-3001-2.
WIESNER, David. Flotsam. illus. by author.
Clarion. RTE $17. ISBN 0-618-19457-6.
WINTER, Jonah. Dizzy. illus. by Sean Qualls.
Scholastic/Arthur A. Levine Bks. Tr $16.99. ISBN 0-439-50737-5.
WOLF, Allan. Immersed in Verse: An Informative,
Slightly Irreverent & Totally Tremendous Guide to
Living the Poet’s Life. illus. by Tuesday
Mourning. Sterling/Lark. PLB $14.95. ISBN 1-57990-628-1.
YANG, Gene Luen. American Born Chinese. illus. by
author. Roaring Brook/First Second. pap. $18.95.
ISBN 1-59643-152-0. LC number unavailable.
YORINKS, Arthur. Mommy? paper engineering by
Matthew Reinhart. illus. by Maurice Sendak.
Scholastic/Michael di Capua Bks. Tr $24.95. ISBN 0-439-88050-5.
ZUSAK, Markus. The Book Thief. Knopf. Tr $16.95.
ISBN 0-375-83100-2; PLB $18.99. ISBN 0-375-93100-7.

PW List of Best Books Kirkus Best Books of


The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing M.T. Anderson (Candlewick)
The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane Kate
DiCamillo, illus. by Bagram Ibatoulline(Candlewick)
Saint Iggy K.L. Going (Harcourt)
Fly by Night Frances Hardinge (HarperCollins)
Incantation Alice Hoffman (Little, Brown)
Firestorm David Klass (FSG/Foster)
Keturah and Lord Death Martine Leavitt (Front Street)
Fairest Gail Carson Levine (HarperCollins)
Sold Patricia McCormick (Hyperion)
Clementine Sara Pennypacker, illus. by Marla Frazee (Hyperion)
The Book Thief Markus Zusak (Knopf)


Pick Me Up (DK)
Escape! The Story of the Great Houdini. Sid
Fleischman (HarperCollins/Greenwillow)
To Dance: A Ballerina's Graphic Novel. Siena
Cherson Siegel, illus. by Mark Siegel (Atheneum/Jackson)

Kirkus has released their
Children's Books of 2006 list.

The Costa Shortlist (formerly

* Clay by David Almond (groan)
* The Diamond of Drury Lane by Julia Golding
* Set in Stone by Linda Newbery
* Just in Case by Meg Rosoff

Let the award speculation begin!

Friday, November 24, 2006


Well, the turkey is just leftovers now and the early morning rush of black Friday sales is behind me now. It never ceases to amaze how many people are out in the wee hours of the morning the day after Thanksgiving. Of course I wouldn't know that unless I was one of them. I got in line for a big screen tv at 2:30 this morning. We were told the store had 10 units and I was number 10 in line!! They didn't go on sale until 5:00 but it would be worth it. Until I found out at 4:30 that they had miscounted and really only had 9 units. Arrgghh. Well, more time for me to read!

I started Anderson's Octavian Nothing last week after it won the National Book Award. And somehow, half way through the book, it disappeared! I hope it shows up soon. I was having a book fair at school and I'm so afraid it got mixed up with the books. I called the book salesman to be on the look out for it. It is a signed advance copy so they shouldn't try to sell it.

So in the meantime, I picked up Michael Sullivan's Escapade Johnson and Mayhem at Mount Moosilauke. What a hoot! I'm so glad to find books that boys will enjoy and Michael certainly does understand the humor of tween boys. Way to go Michael. I'm looking forward to more!

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Back on line

My ISP has fixed whatever the problem was and I am back online. I have uploaded the podcasts for the last few days. I've also updated the booktalks with the November update.

Between having ISP problems and migrating to a new laptop, it has made me ultra-aware of my dependency on technology and connectivity. With the use of web 2.0 applications comes the dependence on reliable connectivity. On the positive side, the migration to the new laptop was easier this time since a lot of my materials were on line anyway. I have my books cataloged in LibraryThing. My bookmarks are managed through My home page is managed by pageflakes. I have several of my current documents in google.doc. One of my webpages is now a wiki. Wow, how web 2.0 applications have saved me a lot of work. On the other hand, not being able to upload files into my website had me in a tizzy. And when I lost my network connection and couldn't get into the Internet, I was stranded. I am becoming more and more dependent on being able to access the Internet, it is a bit worrisome when I can't get into it. I now have backups for my web materials because I know I don't want to be totally dependent on having my data managed by others.

Even so, I have added my new books to Librarything. Edited my book in google.doc. And added to my wiki. I guess I'm just hooked on the ease of using web 2.0 applications!

Friday, November 10, 2006

My its been a long time...

Since I last updated the blog, several things have happened on the web front for the Booktalker. In addition to keeping up with the additions to Booktalks Quick and Simple, there is now a podcast going on. That's right!

Booktalks is now a daily podcast. Actually, it started back in May and has been going on for six months now. My service provider is having a problem with the server so I haven't been able to upload for a couple of days but there will be more podcasts coming!

I have also transitioned the ATN Reading lists to a wiki site. I have been agonizing over how to keep the lists up to date. With well over 1,000 lists now, it is taking more and more of my time. And I have so much else going on that I just don't have the time to keep ATN up and running. Now as a wiki, it is much easier. And I have had lots of help. I have left the wiki open for editing and many people have been taking advantage of that and adding new books to the lists (and fixing my typos). I have had two pages blown away but I am resisting closing the wiki at this point. I am assuming that both instances were accidental and not malicious. I have been able to restore both pages. Check out the wiki when you get a chance Drop me a note and let me know what you think.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Listening for Lions by Gloria Whelan

Whelan, Gloria.
New York : HarperCollins, 2005.
IL 5-8, RL 6.0
ISBN 0060581743
Rachel loves her life in Africa but that is all about to change. Her missionary parents die in the 1919 influenza epidemic and leave Rachel with no family and no prospects. Befriended by neighbors, Rachel is tricked into impersonating their daughter and traveling to England where she will meet "Grandfather" and try to pursuade him to reinstate the neighbors in his will. But Rachel hates the idea of tricking the old man and she misses Africa terribly. What can she do to make things right?

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Sing, Nightengale, Sing!

De Guibert, Francoise.
La Jolla, CA : Kane/Miller, 2006.
IL 3-6, RL 6.1
ISBN 1929132980
Do you know what my favorite thing about spring is? It's hearing the birds singing in the morning. After a long winter of silence, it is so wonderful to hear early morning wake up calls from the returning birds. But I admit I don't know too much about birds. I really couldn't tell one from the other. Either by listening to them or by seeing them. But this book is surely helping to change that. The book has pictures and descriptions of dozens of birds. And the CD that comes with it has the bird songs that help you identify the sounds. Be warned though. Don't play this CD around your cat. It will drive it crazy!!!

The Room of Wonders by Sergio Ruzzier

Ruzzier, Sergio.
New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2005.
IL K-3
ISBN 0374363439
Do you know what a pack rat is? Well, he is a little rodent that picks up things and keeps them. Maybe it is a feather. Or a shiny piece of glass. Or a sea shell. Some may think that these things are just junk, but the pack rat collects these things. Pius, our little pack rat in this book, stores all his treasures in a room he called the Room of Wonders. Visitors from all over come and marvel at his wonders. One day, one of the visitors asks Pius about an ugly stone that is in the collection. It ruins the whole thing. Can Pius throw away any of his collection?

Revenge of the witch by Joseph Delaney

Delaney, Joseph.
New York : Greenwillow, 2005.
IL 5-8, RL 4.7
ISBN 0060766190
Young Tom is the seventh son of the seventh son. There is no inheritance for the seventh son. There is just one thing that a seventh son can do and that is to be apprenticed to a tradesman. And Tom is following that route. His mother has chosen a very unusual apprenticeship for him. He is to work or the village spook. Now the
spook is not the most popular man in town. As a matter of fact, he has no friends. It is a very lonely life. The spook is in charge of protecting the villagers against ghouls, boggarts, and all manner of wicked beasties. Tom is not sure that he is cut out for this life. But it his duty to learn what he can. He very quickly finds himself disobeying the Spook's warnings and gets himself into trouble by mistakenly
freeing the witch Mother Malkin. Can he right this wrong? Or will atastrophe ensue?

I've been lax on posting.

Can't believe how long it has been since I posted. All the best intentions but none of the follow through. Well, I hope to get back into the habit of posting. I did get really bogged down in writing and started to neglect other things.

I've been working on podcasting as well. I have set up a podcast for Booktalks Quick and Simple. I only have one test podcast done now but as soon as I feel more comfortable with the whole thing, I will put a link on the website for the podcast.