28 August 2012

Kitty Kitty

Kitty Kitty by Michele Jaffe Young Adult Mystery Jasmine is the coolest, hippest teen around. She is a modern day Nancy Drew, except when she is stuck wearing a squirrel costume in Italy. This is a hilarious, smart-alecky book filled with today's slang, instant messaging, etc. Since I am not a young adult, it took me a while to get some of her put-downs. Did I mention that cats absolutely adore her? This is probably a good book for a reluctant reader as the 17 year old character is full of angst against her father, fashion conscious, and perky.

24 August 2012


"Maybe God created the desert so that man could appreciate the date trees, he thought". From The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho.

16 August 2012


Croak 1 by Gina Damico Young Adult Fantasy Fiction Lexington is a disgruntled teenager. Actually, it is worse than that. She has a big chip on her shoulder, but no one can say why. She is sent to live with her biker uncle to straighten her out. It turns out that he is the Grim Reaper! One of the grim reapers, anyway. The reapers' job (of course) is to take the souls of the dead to the afterlife. Lex becomes a reapers' apprentice. This is the job she was meant to do. This is a smart alecky book with a nod to classical mythology. Since the author called it "Croak 1" it is obvious that this is book one in a trilogy or longer.

06 August 2012


Unveiled: How an American Woman Found Her Way through Politics, Love, and Obedience in the Middle East by Deborah Kanafani narrated by Suzanne Toren adult autobiography audiobook A well educated daughter of a Syrian American lawyer is interested in exploring her Middle Eastern roots. She takes a job with a nonprofit organization promoting understanding of the Arab world. Eventually she falls in love with a man whose first duty is to the love of his life - Palestine. She tells about Middle East politics from a personal point of view. She is not particularly religious nor loyal to any particular political stance except for PEACE. She works toward understanding and peace between Israel and Palestine and the West and the Middle East. Eventually her marriage dissolves and she finds herself without custody of her children. Through her experiences, the listener comes to understand a little bit the frustration that westerners have with sharia law. She also tells the stories of a number of courageous Middle Eastern women, including Queen Dina of Jordan and Suha Arafat, the wife of Yasser Arafat. It is/was certainly a world with which I am not familiar. It is interesting to hear another perspective than what we generally get from the American media.

Summer reading, etc. 2012

What have I checked out of the library so far this summer? Ghost Flower by Michele Jaffe. YA suspense fiction. This book has the creepiness of the Flowers in the Attic books. An 18 year old homeless girl is hired by a pair of rich siblings to impersonate their dead cousin. This seems like a good deal to Eve, but will they now bump her off for the money? Jaffe keeps the reader guessing. 7/30/2012 9:31:34 AM _____ Along the Way. Autobiography by Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez. This father and son actor team tell about their lives on and off set. Daytonians will be interested that Sheen attended Chaminade High and lived in Dayton. He mentions Brown Street, WSU, UD, and Kettering. 7/24/2012 1:14:31 PM _____ Contagion. Video. What if a new virus hit the Earth leaving one in three people dead? How long would it take to make a vaccine? Would riots ensue? Would school be cancelled? This is a realistic look at the possibilities. 7/13/2012 11:34:23 AM _____ Cat Who Turned On and Off. Audiobook. Lillian Jackson Braun. Qwill is a crime solving newspape writer and Koko is his Siamese cat partner. In this delightful installation Qwill is investigating the antiques neighborhood. Has someone taken the antique dealers' competition too far? Is someone murdering for rare treasures? Find out! 7/11/2012 2:40:15 PM _____ Goddess Test. Teen Romance Book. Aimee Carter. This is a modern take on the Greek mythology of Persephone and Hades. Kate is a teenager who is acquainted with death through the lingering illness of her mother. Can she withstand a number of trials to make a deal with death? 7/7/2012 4:47:37 PM _____ Lockdown. Audiobook. Walter Dean Myers. This author is a master storyteller and the reader, J. D. Jackson does a great job with narrating. Fourteen year old Maurice is in juvenile detention for having stolen prescription pads from a doctor's office. Is he doomed to a life of crime or can he turn himself around? The book is gritty, yet authentic as it debates the current situation of inner city children. 6/29/2012 1:41:25 PM _____ Gone Away Lake and Return to Gone Away Lake by Elizabeth Enright. Children's book and audiobook. What if you found an abandoned neighborhood complete with spooky old houses, furniture, and more? It is a This Old House and Antiques Roadshow dream as well as that of some New York children. Newbery Honor Book. 6/27/2012 9:18:34 AM _____ Everything Must Go. Video. Will Ferrell. This is a sad, thoughtful, movie about a man who loses his job, his wife, and his home. Is it all bad, though? Now he has time to talk to the people in the neighborhood and assess what is important. 6/27/2012 9:10:23 AM _____ War Horse. Video. This movie follows the life of a British horse during World War I. He is captured by the Germans, then falls into French hands, back to German control, etc. It reminds me of Black Beauty. 6/26/2012 12:22:20 PM _____ Yo Gabba Gabba the Dancey Dance Bunch. children's video. Psychedelic, man. Far out! If you have watched all of the Doodlebops, watch this next. 6/26/2012 12:21:08 PM _____ Mighty Wind. Video + Soundtrack on CD. We watched this fake documentary about 1960's folk singers and enjoyed the music very much, then we checked out the soundtrack to listen to in the car. In particular, the novelty song "Old Joe's Place" and the title song are toe tapping fun! 6/25/2012 12:48:45 PM _____ Mockingjay. Book #3 in the Hunger Games. Katniss has become the symbol of the revolution, but who can she trust? Is she still just a player in someone's game? 6/21/2012 11:49:26 AM _____ Movie. Talking Picture. in Portuguese with subtitles. This is a tour of the history of Western civilization up to 2001 as seen through the eyes of a Portuguese professor and her young daughter as they take a cruise around the Mediterranean. 6/18/2012 12:46:53 PM _____ Movie. Descendants with George Clooney. A family is changed forever when the mother is in an accident and in a coma from which she will not recover. The Dad has to stop
being the "backup parent" and become THE parent. It is a thoughtful film with a great Hawaiian soundtrack. 6/18/2012 10:12:33 AM _____ Book. White Truffles in Winter. This work of historical fiction is based on the life of Auguste Escoffier, a master chef whose work influenced French and English cooking forevermore. Some of his dishes are disgusting and others sound wonderful. Many other historical figures also appear including Prince Bertie, Kaiser Wilhelm, and Sarah Bernhardt. 6/14/2012 2:44:42 PM _____ "Catching Fire" book 2 in the Hunger Games series. Without meaning to, Katniss has become a symbol of rebellion against the Capitol. What will transpire in District 12 and the rest of the country? 6/14/2012 2:35:41 PM _____ Video "The Way" staring Martin Sheen and written by his son, Emilio Estevez. A father decides to walk El Camino de Santiago, a pilgrim's path in France and Spain in memory of his son who died on this historic trail. The walk is a spiritual journey as well as a physical one. Sheen, a Dayton native, gives a great performance. 6/14/2012 2:34:26 PM _____ Audiobook "13 Gifts" by Wendy Mass. Twelve year old Tara is banished to her mother's home town for the summer while her parents are on a research trip to Madagascar. Odd things are happening in this town. Is this like Eerie, Indiana, or is it all in Tara's head? Somehow she is trapped into leading a scavenger hunt. Can she get the items before the summer is out? Sometimes silly, sometimes serious, Tara deals with the quirky characters the best she can. 6/14/2012 2:31:43 PM