Monday, March 31, 2008

Crispin tale continues

For those of you who have read Crispin : The Cross of Lead, this book picks up just where it left off. Crispin and Bear are free and making their way across the English countryside. They are just one step ahead of Bear's former partners who are out for revenge for Bear's suspected betrayal.. And then Bear is wounded and the two seek shelter with an old woman in the village. Aude also shelters Troth, a young girl with a cleft lip. Bear, Crispin and Troth form a tight bond that is closer than some families. When the villagers turn against them, the three flee once again.

My beautiful cousin Brandee lost her battle last night. At the young age of 30, she has left us all too soon. Please say a prayer for her.

Sunday, March 30, 2008


I've been trying to catch up on some series reading. I usually only read the first book in a series to get an idea of what the series is about. But then never have the time to finish. Well, I've taken care of a few of them recently.

Falcondance by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes

Volume three of The Kiesha'ra series finds Nicias, son of two falcon human exiles, returning home. The world is divided between the falcons and the serpents. He has been living with the serpents but is now sent to the land of his ancestors. He has inherited his parents' magic but needs to learn to control it. This power can destroy him if not controlled. Only his grandmother can help him and keep him safe. What will happen when Nicias learns of his royal roots?

I also ask that everyone please say a prayer for my cousin Brandee. She's in critical condition and we just don't know what will happen. We believe in miracles so please help us see our miracle.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Ah to be in England

Just found out about this. On Sunday, at 3.30p.m., BBC1 is showing a full-length dramatisation of David Almond's 'Clay'. I checked the BBC site to see if by any chance this was going to be available over the Internet. Alas, tis not. But it looks as if BBC is contemplating a fee based service that will allow us outside the country to access the programs. I for one would gladly pay for the service. Just to get my EastEnders fix!!

I have already done a podcast for Clay that can be accessed at:

I love David Almond's works! So here is another podcast for one of my favorite books!!

Almond, David. SKELLIG

Michael wants his life back the way he dreamed it would be. The excitement of moving to a new house is clouded now that his new sister is so ill and his parents are so preoccupied. The only bright spot is Mina, the girl he meets who has some strong opinions and many things to teach Michael, even though she doesn't go to school. One day while investigating the garage as the real estate agent called it (although Michael thinks of it as a demolition site), he realizes that something or someone is hiding in the far dark corner. Michael reaches out to this being, bringing him Chinese #27 and #53 (his favorite), and aspirin (for his "Arthur Itis") and begins a relationship that defies description. What is Skellig, this creature that Michael and Mina care for? Man? Bird? Angel? What will he mean for their future? This story guarantees to engage and mystify through to the very last page.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Another snow day?

Can you believe we had yet another snow day? That makes 6 days we'll have to make up at the end of the year. At this rate, we'll be going until they decide a Democratic candidate!!

I have heard from Rivier that I have been chosen for an interview for the doctoral program. I guess I am one step closer to being accepted into the program. I should know sometime in the next couple of weeks.

Today's podcast is Stolarz, Laurie Faria. PROJECT 17.
Danvers State Mental Hospital. Some say it is where lobotomies where first performed. Much has happened inside these walls. And now it is closed and being torn down. Derik has a great idea for a film project based on the hospital. And he recruits an unlikely group of kids to spend the night inside the mental institution before it disappears forever. But will this just be a teen party that is done for a lark? Or are there some ghosts from the past who want a final say?

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Author visit with Allan Wolf

On Monday and Tuesday, author/poet Allan Wolf visited with our students. If you ever get the chance to have Allan at your school, jump on it. I fell in love with his book "New Found Land" about the Lewis and Clark expedition. It is told in narrative verse and told in many different voices -- including Lewis' dog. Allan also a performance poet. I got to meet Allan last summer. The Janet Allen Institute was held in our district and Allan was one of the marvelous presenters. The teachers in attendance were thrilled when I was able to book Allan to come to our school.

The students were blown away. Allan's energy and enthusiasm were infectious. He is able to connect with the kids in a very real way. A couple of our kids set Allan's poetry to music for a class project and were thrilled when he let them perform with him. Check out his books "The Blood Hungry Spleen" and "Immersed in Verse." A great author visit!!