Friday, October 31, 2008

Friday Fill-ins #96

#96 we go!

1. My favorite food seasoning is salt.
2. Frog's croaking is music to my ears.
3. Lucky is having a great family.
4. Voting is something I take very seriously.
5. Many people live inthe world.
6. Fruit salad was the last thing I bought at the store.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to doing counted crossstitching and lots of trick or treaters, tomorrow my plans include cleaning the bathroom and Sunday, I want to read and relax!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Book Review - One Frog Sings by Shirley Parenteau

Title: One Frog Sings
Author: Shirley Parenteau
Genre: Childrens
Challenges: 101 Books in 1001 Days, PB&J, What an Animal
Rating: 5/5
No. of Pages: 32
Published: 2007

From the inside:
On a wet spring night, one big frog sings Ka-Blu-Urp!
Two tiny frogs sing preep, preep
Three young frogs sing ribbit, ribbit
All the way up to ten frogs who trill peep, peep as a frog chorus fills the air with grunts and croaks, chirps and ribbits – until….a car splashes down the street and all the frogs from 10 down to one are hushed.


What a great way for children to learn how to count up to 10 and down to 1. It is greatly illustrated with 148 frogs all together.

Reading: Sam’s Letters to Jennifer by James Patterson
Listening to: Reflections by Barbara Bush

Book Review - Little Tad Grows Up by Giuliano Ferri

Title: Little Tad Grows Up
Author: Giuliano Ferri
Genre: Childrens
Challenges: 101 Books in 1001 Days, PB&J, What an Animal
Rating: 5/5
No. of Pages: 32
Published: 2007

From the inside:
Little Tadpole is going through some big changes in his early life. For one thing, he’s sad when he learns his is losing his tail. Instead, he’s growing strange new legs that he doesn’t know what to do with. The older frogs tell him to be patient, but it’s hard when everything’s changing around you. Then one day he finds himself face to face with a sneaky watersnake, and he learns just how useful his new legs can be. In the process, he discovers a beautiful new world outside the water. This is a funny endearing book at what it means to grow up.

You can see the pains that Tad goes through as he realizes his body is changing. He doesn’t know why yet, but the reason will come by the end of the book. What a wonderful way to teach children that longer legs, loosing teeth are all just part of growing up.

Reading: Sam’s Letters to Jennifer by James Patterson
Listening to: Reflections by Barbara Bush

Book Review - Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlin

Title: Sarah, Plain and Tall (Newbery Medal Winner 1986)
Author: Patricia MacLachlan
Genre: Young Adult
Challenges: Baby Steps, 101 Books in 1001 Days, Naming Conventions, Around The States
Rating: 5/5
No. of Pages: 64
Published: 1985, Epilogue 1992
From the back:
Their mother died the day after Caleb was born. Their house on the prarie is quiet now, and Papa doesn’t sing anymore. Then Papa puts an ad in the paper, asking for a wife, and he receives a letter from one Sarah Elizabeth Wheaton of Maine. Papa, Anna and Caleb write back. Caleb asks if she sings.

Sarah decides to come for a month. She writes Papa, I will come by train. I will wear a yellow bonnet. I am plina and tall, and tell them I sing. Anna and Caleb wait and wonder. Will Sarah be nice? Will she like them? Will she stay?

What an endearing story about how people used to live and think. It seems all so simple. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a simple life now. How people were match quite often didn’t have to do with if they loved each other, but if the circumstances were right.

Sarah was nice, she did like them and she did stay.

Reading: Sam’s Letters to Jennifer by James Patterson
Listening to: Reflections by Barbara Bush

Booking Thru Thursday

Are you a spine breaker? Or a dog-earer? Do you expect to keep your books in pristine condition even after you have read them? Does watching other readers bend the cover all the way round make you flinch or squeal in pain?

I try not to break the spine.
I do sometimes dog-ear the pages, but try to always use a bookmark even if it's the receipt for the book iteself. Books are to be read, and can never be in pristine condition, but good condition is nice if you ever want to pass them on.
I had to see people bend the covers all the way around.

Thursday Thoughts

This week’s Thursday’s Thoughts… What is/was your favorite classroom subject? Did it come easy for you…? Why did you love it?

My favorite class was always history/social studies. It was always interesting to me to know what came before me and how it affected my life. I used to love to learn about the different wars. I couldn't read enough about WWII at one time. I still try to read a historical book at least once a year. Be it about Abraham Lincoln (my favorite President), the Civil War or WWII.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

It's Tuesday - Where are You?

I have just arrived from Maine to the Mid-west prairie. It is so different and there is no sea. It's brown and flat and the sounds are very different.

Monday, October 27, 2008

GIVEAWAY - Halloween Collection of Books (11/1)

Here is another one with Halloween books

GIVEAWAY - The Love Dare (11/4)

Here is another giveaway this looks kind of interesting good luck to you

GIVEAWAY - The Gifted Galbadon Sisters (10/30)

Here is a giveaway for The Gifted Galbadon Sisters check it out and good luck

Book Review - The Gift by Nora Roberts (3 in 1)


Title: The Gift
Author: Nora Roberts
Genre: Romance
Challenges: Baby Steps, 101 Books in 1001 Days, Romance,
Rating: 4/5
No. of Pages: 442
Published: 2007

From the back:
Home for Christmas (1986)
After years spent abroad, reporter Jason Law returned home determined to win back the girl he left behind. It would take all his skills- and then some – to win Faith back. But this time, nothing would stand in his way – it was time faith was rewarded.

All I Want for Christmas(1994)

Identical twin boys Zeke and Zach wanted only one gift from Santa this year: a new mom! But convincing their love-wary dad that their music teacher, Miss Davis, was his destiny and part of Sant’s plan wasn’t as easy as they’d hoped…..

Gabriel’s Angel(1989)

All Gabriel Bradly wanted was solitude. But when Laura ended up at his remote cabin during a blizzard, desperate, alone and on the run, the modern-day Scrooge couldn’t turn her away. For she brought, him the gift of passion, life, hope..if he had the courage to reach for it.

As only Roberts can do she gathers you in and pulls at the heart strings to bring people together as they should be.

Reading: Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan (Newbery Medal Winner)
Listening to: Reflections by Barbara Bush

Friday, October 24, 2008

GIVEAWAY - Testimony by Anita Shreve (10/30)

Here is another great giveaway by Dar

Testimony by Anita Shreve - she's also written a book review

GIVEAWAY - The Likeness by Tana French

Trish has a great review of this book and a giveaway.

It looks like a very interstesting read. Good luck to you.

The Rescue Challenge

November 1, 2008 - December 31, 2009
Katrina at Katrina Reads is hosting the Rescue Challenge - a challenge designed to "help rescue those unloved books from the obscurity of the bottom of the TBR pile." The challenge is a two-parter as follows:

I. Get rid of any books you know deep down you will never read - bookmooch, bookcross, give them away to a charity shop... these books will take up less of your space and have the opportunity to be read.

II. Set up a pool of unloved books and read between 3-6 of them between Nov 1st 2008 - Dec 31st 2009.

Books can count for other challenges, and the prize is "simply space on your shelves and freeing yourself of guilt when you once again sweep past that copy to reach for a shiny new book."

The Year Of Readers - 2009

January 1 - December 31, 2009

Jodie is hosting this year long charity event to help raise money and awareness of reading. Jodie writes:
In 2009 I want to spread my love of reading throughout the world. The Year of Readers aims to bring people who enjoy books together to have fun bringing literature into the lives of others.
You pick a literary charity that you want to support in 2009. You sign up to be part of The Year of Readers, get people to sponsor you and just start reading whatever you like. If you’re going to read next year why not join and help a bookish charity at the same time?
Here are a few rules:
1. You can sign up at any time but only books read from 1st January to 31st December 2009 can be counted towards your sponsored read-a-thon.
2. You must sign up via the Mr. Linky at the dedicated blog for this event.
3. Books of any genre or type count (including graphic novels and poetry anthologies) but magazines and newspapers do not.
4. If you're taking part in any reading challenges next year all those books can be counted towards your sponsored read-a-thon.
There is a lot more information at The Year of Readers blog...including links to possible charities, as well as how to get sponsors and raise funds, and how to join the community blog. Why not check it out?

Friday Fill-ins #95

You can find the weekly list

1. Right now, I'm feeling tired.
2. At home is where I want to be.
3. How does one knit?
4. Lists keeps me on track.
5. Please don't tell me I can't do something.
6. My nephews fill me with joy.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to doing some counted cross stitching, tomorrow my plans include watching my nephews soccer game and then carving pumpkins with them and Sunday, I want to relax!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Booking Thru Thrusday

“Name a favorite literary couple and tell me why they are a favorite. If you cannot choose just one, that is okay too. Name as many as you like–sometimes narrowing down a list can be extremely difficult and painful. Or maybe that’s just me.”

Anne Shirley and Gilbert Blythe from Anne of Green Gables. It so great to follow the young romance.

Laura Ingalls and Alonzo Wilder from Little House on the Prarie. Once again the test of time with young love.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Book Around The States Challenge

~Current Challenge with no Time Limit~
(signed up 10/22/08)

Bonnie has started a new blog and challenge called: Book Around The States. She is challenging participants to find 50 books for 50 states and then read a book about each state, maybe a handful at a time. Why not go visit her?

Baby Steps

October 1 - December 31, 2008
(signed up 10/22/08)

Sponsored by Nattie's Blog, this challenge encourages readers to take "baby steps" and read 3 books from their TBR pile before the end of the year.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Tuesday Teaser

The Gift by Nora Roberts

"Five minutes. I've been --" She let her head fall back and began to breathe in short, deep gasps. Gabe slipped his hand over her and felt the hardening of her abdomen."

It's Tuesday - Where are You?

I can be found in a snowed in cabin in the mountains about Denver. Gabe (the artist) is taking care of Laura (the pregnant lady) who almost ran him off the snowy road. Since her car got stuck in the snow he took her to his cabin.

To Be Continued...Challenge

To Be Continued...Challenge
Perpetual Challenge

No Time Limits

Marcia from The Printed Page is hosting a challenge for series lovers. To Be Continued... is a perpetual challenge - so no time limits! The guidelines for this challenge are:

1 - No books lists or sign ups; cross over books and challenges are welcome, actually encouraged
2 - If not based on the main character central characters must play a prominent part throughout the series
3 - All genres welcome ~ YA, historical, western, paranormal, mystery, police procedural, adventure, etc.
4 - No trilogies please; only ongoing series (see Spotlight Series)

P.B. and J.Challenge

Signed up 10/20/08

Becky at Becky's Book Reviews is hosting the P.B. and J.Challenge - it's all about reading picture books and juvenile literature. There are no set number of books and no time limit - participants create their own, individualized challenge...the only "rule" is the books must either be picture books or juvenile literature. Becky says:

This "challenge" is to just incorporate the good stuff into your reading lifestyle. It's for all ages. It would be a great challenge for parents or grandparents, a place to discuss the books you read with your kids or grandkids. (Or if you're an aunt or uncle, those books shared with your "favorite" niece or nephew.) But kids are not a requirement by any means. All are welcome. All book lovers are welcome that is!

2009 A to Z Reading Challenge

Sponsored by Becky

January 1 - December 31, 2009 (signed up 10/21/08)

Option A: Read authors A to Z. Commit to reading 26 books theoretically speaking.
Option B: Read titles A to Z. Commit to reading 26 books theoretically speaking.
Option C: Read both authors A to Z and titles A to Z (52 books; this is the challenge Joy created)
Option D: Read internationally A to Z (books representing 26 different countries) (The books could be from international authors (writers from that country); however, it's fine if a book is only set in that country. If need be, instead of countries one could use cities, states, regions, etc. The idea is to use proper place names. If you'd like you could even use a few fictional countries.)
Option E: Read 26 Alphabet books. Embrace your inner child and go visit the children's section!

General rules:

How strict is the 26 or 52? I know it isn't always easy to find those difficult letters. The thought of finding the X's (for example) might scare folks away. It shouldn't! I'm a merciful host! (Ask anyone!)

If you want to give the X's a go... For authors, try to find an X in the first name, middle name, or last name. For titles, it doesn't have to be the starting word. Try to find an X somewhere in a title, and it'd count in my book.

Still can't find a book for the letter you need? I'll take your word for it. I've been there. I know. If your library doesn't see the need to order books just because it starts with an X, then I don't blame you for not wanting to special order a book that you may or may not enjoy. You gave it your best, don't feel bad. You can still make this challenge work for you.

Don't be afraid to ask for recommendations. Look at the previous site. Ask other participants. Or ask me, your host. I may not have the "right" recommendation for every letter, but working together, I bet you'll find something that interests you.

Audio books count in my opinion. If you take the time to listen to books, then that should count towards something.

What about rereads? I don't have a problem with rereads. I would hope that you'd want to mix it up a bit and read some new authors, new titles, etc. But I'm not going to require that by any means.

What about children's books? Children's books and YA books count along with adult fiction and nonfiction of all sorts. (Poetry and plays too. Short stories count if they're in a collection.) I don't see a need to discriminate between "adult" and "kiddie" books. Even picture books can count if you like. Though try to use them in moderation. I used a few picture books to get tricky letters this year.

Overlaps are allowed with other challenges. In fact, you'd be a bit silly not to take advantage of this!

101 Books in 1001 Days Challenge

October 20, 2008 - July 18, 2011

Here's a challenge that puts a spin on the 1001 Books To Read Before You Die list. Twiga is hosting this fun, long range challenge. She's allowing for flexibility - you can pick your own start and stop date and she gives you a link to calculate them.

GIVEAWAY - Brass Verdict by Michael Connelly

You enter for this book at The Sleepy Reader

If you a Michael Connelly Fan this is for you.

GIVEAWAY - Books about Egyptian Times (10/31)

Here is a great one if you are at all interested in Egyptian times

Celebrate the Author - 2009

Sponsored by Becky

It is a twelve month challenge. January - December 2009.

The challenge is designed to “celebrate” author birthdays. Choose one author for each month of the year. Read at least one book a month. 12 authors. 12 birthdays. If you like, you can read MORE than that. If you’re really obsessive, you might want to “celebrate” all 52 weeks of the year. (But even I am not THAT zealous!) The challenge is designed to ‘celebrate’ the special bond–the connection–that occurs between the author AND the reader as well as the connection between readers. It is very easy to “bond” with other readers over certain works, certain authors, etc.

Or conduct google searches of your own. (Hint: typing the authors name, a “+” and the word ‘birthday’, tends to work if you assume that wikipedia gets such things right.)

You can choose picture books, poetry books, early readers, chapter books, fiction for middle grades, fiction for teens, adult reads, nonfiction, whatever you want. You could choose 12 picture books. You can read books in or out of your comfort zone.

You might want to make a list and choose alternatives for each month…that way you can narrow it down as you go. And you do NOT have to choose a book until the very moment you’re ready to start reading. Just pick a handful of authors.

And here’s the secret. If you change your mind, just be sure to change your list to reflect that change. I don’t care how many times you change your list.

Why make a list at all? Good question. It’s not that I want you to stick to your list. I don’t care if you change it. I don’t need to see it in advance. But I mention lists because I think–and this could be me–that it is easier to visit those sites and jot down a few authors per month to give you ideas then it is to wait until the last minute and try to figure out which birthday is when and what counts etc. But if you want to be completely spontaneous then that’s fine with me!!

This year the round ups will be here on this wordpress site. You’ll be leaving links to your reviews. If you write reviews that is. Or you’ll be leaving comments to say what you read.

Every Month Is A Holiday - 2009

Sponsored by Kim

January 1 - December 31, 2009 (signed up 10/21/08)

Ok here is the challenge.

I am going to post by month, what holiday takes place in said month and the person may then choose what book they would like to read. And believe me, it is easy. For example, the month of Emmet Kelly's birthday (he is a clown) a person may choose to read about clowns, a circus, etc, Like Water for Elephants. (This is just a little hint about Emmet Kelly, he was born and is buried in Peru, Ind. My brother lives in this town and I have seen his grave. My nephew is buried there also. Anyway, there is a book titled A circus in Winter that takes place in the town of Peru. How neat is that?) Like I said one can really have fun with this one and find all kinds of books.

Yes, the books may be crossed challenged.

Please list the books you read and where your reading wishes take you.

Here are the sites that I used to get just some of my ideas. I tried to get a cross section of birthdays, author, artists, famous people, but of course could not. If you want to add more, please go ahead.

Here are the two web sites that I got the following information from:

Feel free to add anything you find interesting or another holiday or birthday that you are aware of.

The challenge is one book per month, but it does not have to be in any order.

John Steinbeck Mini-Challenge for 2009

Sponsored by Becky

Signed up 10/21/08

This mini-challenge, the John Steinbeck Mini-Challenge, is for the 2009 year. It will be from January 1, 2009 through December 31, 2009.

The goal of the challenge is to read TWO books by John Steinbeck. (Audio books are welcome.) One movie can be substituted for one of the books if you prefer.

What an Animal Reading Challenge

Sponsored by Kristi

July 1, 2008 to June 30, 2009 (signed up 10/21/08)

I've finally decided to take the plunge and host my first reading challenge -- What an Animal!

The rules are simple:
1. Read at least 6 books that have any of these requirements:
a. an animal in the title of the book
b. an animal on the cover of the book
c. an animal that plays a major role in the book
d. a main character that is or turns into an animal (define that however you'd like ;>)).

2. The animal can be any type of animal (real or fictitious)--dog, cat, monkey, wolf, snake, insect, hedgehog, aardvark...dragons, mermaids, centaurs, fairies, get the idea...

3. Challenge runs from July 1, 2008 to June 30, 2009. You can still sign up after July 1st as long as you can get 6 books read by June 30th ;>).
4. Books can be fiction or nonfiction.
5. You may make a list of books at the beginning of the challenge or just list them as you find them.
6. Books may be swapped out at anytime (assuming you made a list to begin with).
7. Crossover books with other challenges is permitted and encouraged.
8. You don't have to blog or write a review, but you can if you want to.
9. Sign up with Mr. Linky below. Please sign up with the specific post announcing the challenge if you are a blogger. If you do not blog, sign up with your name and leave the URL field blank. Thanks!
10. Have fun!!

Presidential Reading Challenge

July 4, 2008 - July 4, 2009 (signed up 10/21/08
(Length of Challenge depends on the level you choose)

Becky from Becky's Book Reviews is hosting another one! The Presidential Reading Challenge is set up to allow participants to pick a level of reading which suits their needs.

For levels I through 3, readers are asked to read books which are either "fiction or nonfiction, for adults or for children.They need to be about a president or first lady or in someway connected to the President (children, pets, other relatives, friends, etc.) The book can be written from other points of view--from a servant, slave, friend, aide, employee, etc.--but the President and/or someone from his family would need to enter into it at some point."

Level one: Commit to reading ONE book between July 4, 2008 and November 4, 2008.

Level two: Commit to reading THREE books between July 4, 2008 and January 20, 2009. (Inauguration day according to Wikipedia).

Level three: Commit to reading FIVE books between July 4, 2008 and July 4, 2009.

Level four: This one is slightly different. You must commit to read primary documents--speeches and such. (Becky provides links for these on her site) So this level asks you to commit to reading 10 items. This one would go July 4, 2008 through July 4, 2009.

No lists or blogs are required.

The Naming Conventions Challenge

Started 10/21/08 - Ended ????

Sponsored by Maria

My aim with making this challenge is to have as random a challenge as possible but still having some sort of guideline to work from. Yes, I'm weird, I know.

Even the length of the challenge is random! Well, it starts on September 1st, but how long it lasts depends on how long your name is.

Confused yet? No reason to be, just hang on, and I'll explain it all.

1) Write down your first name (or whatever name you usually go by)
2) Do any or all of the following (i.e. do 2a and/or 2b and/or 2c):
2a) For each letter, pick an author whose last name starts with that letter.
2b) For each letter, pick an author whose first name starts with that letter.
2c) For each letter, pick a book that starts with that letter.
3) Books can be cross-overs from other challenges, but each book can only be used once in this challenge. Authors may be repeated though.
4) The challenge lasts one month per letter of your name
5) Sign up by commenting to this post.

The books can be read in any order and the list changed at any time during the challenge.

2a - Pick an author whose last name starts with that letter
2b - Pick an author whose first name starts with that letter
2c - Pick a book that starts with that letter
S - Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan (Newbery Medal Winner)

New Reading Blog

I figure I should get myself together with my reading so am starting a new reading blog.

Will gladly take suggestions on how to enhance or improve it.