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Wondrous Words Wednesday

March 11, 2020

Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme where you can share new words that you’ve encountered or spotlight words you love.  Feel free to get creative!   If you want to play along, grab the button, write a post and come back and add your link to Mr. Linky!

I found this word in a blog post by Serena of Savvy Verse and Wit.

1. ekphrasis – “Her ekphrastic poems infuse some masterpieces with new life and connects the art viewer and the poetry reader through her poems.”

According to Wikipedia, “The word ekphrasis, or ecphrasis, comes from the Greek for the description of a work of art produced as a rhetorical exercise, often used in the adjectival form ekphrastic. It is a vivid, often dramatic, verbal description of a visual work of art, either real or imagined.”

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What words do you want to celebrate today?

Mailbox Monday

March 9, 2020

Welcome to Mailbox Monday, a meme started by Marcia and now hosted on its own blog.  Here’s what I found in my mailbox last week:

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

What was in your mailbox?

The Week in Review: 03.06.2020

March 6, 2020
tags:

the-week-in-review

Between the Covers

Finished last week:

When twelve year old Edward and his family were moving from New York to California, the plane crashed over Colorado.  Everyone but Edward died.  His aunt and uncle are his only relatives and they bring him to live with them.  Many of the relatives of the other passengers reach out to Edward wanting to know if he met their loved ones.  Edward learns to deal with grief, a new home environment, and some unwanted fame with the help of his aunt and uncle, his therapist, his principal, and his new friend, Shay.

DEAR EDWARD by Ann Napolitano is a character driven novel inspired by a true story.  Edward’s aunt and uncle aren’t prepared to bring a young boy in their home but they work hard to make him feel at home.  Edward is initially numb and isn’t sure what he’s supposed to do.  When letters start pouring in for him, his aunt and uncle are overwhelmed so they bundle them up and put them away.  When Edward finds them a few years later, he finds them therapeutic.  The story is told in the present with flashbacks to the ill-fated plane trip  I found the transitions between the time periods jarring at times and parts of the story were repetitive but I still enjoyed following Edward’s journey and liked the book quite a bit.  Cassandra Campbell does a terrific job narrating the audio version of the book.  (Review copy provided by Penguin Random House.)

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JUST ASK!: BE DIFFERENT, BE BRAVE, BE YOU by Sonia Sotomayor encourages youngsters to ask about and accept the differences in others.  Children with diabetes, asthma, allergies, ADHD, etc are highlighted and explain that while they are different in some ways, they’re the same as everyone else in most ways.  The language is clear and concise and is just detailed enough for the older picture book crowd.  So often we tell children not to stare but give them no explanation about someone else’s differences and I love that this book lets children know it’s okay to ask.  I listened to the audio version and really enjoyed Ali Stroker’s narration.

Years ago, the son of friends of ours had to have surgery and was put in casts from his hips to his ankles with a bar connecting his legs in between.  They told us many people stared and, one day, a young man approached them and respectfully asked why their son was in the casts.  They said his question meant so much to them because they were able to explain it and possibly spread awareness of the condition he had.   I wish this book had been around then.  (Review copy provided by Penguin Random House.)

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MY NAME IS LUCY BARTON by Elizabeth Strout opens with Lucy in the hospital for an extended stay because of complications from what should have been a routine surgery.  Lucy’s husband isn’t fond of hospitals so her mother has come to help out.  Their relationship has always been complicated and has been almost non-existent in recent years.  Through their conversations and Lucy’s thoughts, readers get a glimpse into the past that has gotten them where they are.  Many issues that dysfunctional families face – like poverty, family secrets, and a distant mother – are touched upon.  Strout also shows the way those issues perpetuate themselves in future generations.

I appreciated Strout’s writing and liked this book a great deal.  I’m not sure that I loved it but I did love Kimberly Farr’s fantastic narration in the audio book version.  She brought the characters to life for me.  (Review copy provided by Penguin Random House.)

Currently reading:

On the Screen

Not much of anything.

Off the blog

  • I voted in Saturday’s primary race.
  • I walked at least three miles every morning and averaged just over 16,000 Fitbit steps a day.

What’s going on in your corner of the world?

Wondrous Words Wednesday

March 4, 2020

Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme where you can share new words that you’ve encountered or spotlight words you love.  Feel free to get creative!   If you want to play along, grab the button, write a post and come back and add your link to Mr. Linky!

I found two more words in WHERE HAVE ALL THE BOYS GONE by Jenny Colgan.

1. trews – “‘Ladies!’ said Craig the Vet, looking redfaced and bluff in a pair of dark blue tartan trews and a waistcoat.”

Trews are close-fitting tartan trousers worn by certain Scottish regiments.

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2. sporran – “Ian unfastened his sporran and pulled out a piece of paper.'”

A sporran is a traditional part of male Scottish Highland dress and is a pouch that performs the same function as pockets on the pocketless kilt.

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What words do you want to celebrate today?

Mailbox Monday

March 2, 2020

Welcome to Mailbox Monday, a meme started by Marcia and now hosted on its own blog.  Just one book this week but I’m fine with that since I’m trying to purge my shelves right now.

Thursday

What was in your mailbox?

The Week in Review: 02.28.2020

February 28, 2020
tags:

the-week-in-review

Between the Covers

Finished last week:

I first heard about AMERICAN DIRT by Jeanine Cummins at Book Expo last year.  Then, I heard the author speak at SIBA and was able to snag a copy.  I was excited to pick it up and was almost done with it when I started reading about all the controversy surrounding it.  Then, Oprah picked it for her latest book club selection.  It’s been a little while since I finished the book and I thought about not posting about it because I’m still mulling things around in my head.

The book is about Lydia, a young Mexican mother and her son Luca.  While they’re at a family celebration, the rest of their family is massacred by a Mexican drug cartel.  They escape and try to make their way to the US.  Along the way, they encounter other migrants who are making the journey for different reasons.

Cummins says she researched the book for four years to get things right and I get that she’s trying to show what it’s like to be a migrant.  I’m not sure it’s particularly well written but the story is fraught with tension and horror so it was a quick read for me.  I did wonder about some things as I read it, though – like why would Lydia think she’d be safe from drug cartel violence in the US?  How did she and her son adapt to the life of a migrant so quickly?

If you’ve read the book, what did you think?  Do you know of a migrant story written by a migrant?  (Review copy provided by Flatiron Books.)

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Raised in a Quaker family, Susan B. Anthony believed everyone is equal, regardless of sex or race.  She was against slavery and thought women should be able to vote.  At a time when women were discouraged from speaking out, Anthony worked hard to abolish slavery and to secure suffrage for women.

SUSAN B. ANTHONY by Kitson Jazynka is a wonderful book about a strong woman for early readers.  This is a National Geographic Kids Level 1 Book and inside the front cover are directions for reading it.  Parents and caregivers are to read the more difficult page on the left hand side and youngsters read the right hand side.  Harder words, like abolish and petition, are introduced on the left hand side.  There are lots of photographs and illustration as well as activities to enforce learning throughout the book.  I loved the format of this book and enjoyed reading it.  It would make a fine addition to any library.  (Review copy provided by Media Masters Publicity.)

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Several years ago, Hoda Kotb posted an inspirational post on Instagram and got a great response so she decided to post one daily.  She shares a year’s worth of those quotes in her book I REALLY NEEDED THIS TODAY.  After each quote, she explains why the quote has meaning to her or someone in her life.

I listened to this book and enjoyed it and Kotb’s narration of it.  There is background music as she reads the quote and none while she explains why it’s meaningful.  Many of the quotes hit home for me but, of course, I don’t remember them, so I do think this would be a nice book to own in print.  I think it would be fun to read a quote a day or dip in and out of it.  This would make a lovely gift for yourself or a friend.  (Review copy provided by Penguin Random House.)

Currently reading:

On the Screen

I watched the documentary Born Rich.  It was created by Jamie Johnson, an heir to the Johnson & Johnson fortune about what it’s like to grow up filthy rich and features people like Georgina Bloomberg (daughter of Michael Bloomberg), Christina Floyd (her father was golf great Raymond Floyd), Josiah Hornblower (Vanderbilt/Whitney heir), and Ivanka Trump.  I thought it was a fascinating peek into a life I’ll never know and I was struck at how differently the wealth they grew up affected these individuals.

Off the blog

  • I walked at least three miles every morning and averaged almost 16,500 Fitbit steps a day.

What’s going on in your corner of the world?

Wondrous Words Wednesday

February 26, 2020

Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme where you can share new words that you’ve encountered or spotlight words you love.  Feel free to get creative!   If you want to play along, grab the button, write a post and come back and add your link to Mr. Linky!

These words are from WHERE HAVE ALL THE BOYS GONE? by Jenny Colgan.

1. bothy – “‘I didn’t even know what a bothy was.'”

A bothy is a small hut or cottage in Scotland.

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2. ickle – “‘One of them gave Harry an ickle baby wave.'”

Ickle is British slang for little.

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What words do you want to celebrate today?