Love TED talks.
Monthly Archives: May 2013
So this guy, Richard Paul Evans (hereafter called RPE), shoots out books like its nobody’s business. He has millions (most of them Christmas related) but he recently started a new series called the Walk series (2010 is recent, right?) Silly me, I assumed it would be a trilogy since most all series’ are these days but NO. I’m on book 4 and the man is only halfway through his walk. At this point I’m concerned about how invested I’ve gotten myself into this thing. Are we talking 8 books? 10 books? How many books am I going to be waiting for Mr. RPE? Is he even going to Key West, Florida??! Goodreads usually helps me with these series questions by putting up ghost books for the next however many are left but is no help this time. It only lists the 4 that have been published. Gah! You would be secretive in my time of need Goodreads. I don’t do well with surprises. Anyway, it is an amazing series & I highly suggest it. As someone who usually stalls on book 2 in a series (see previous post) I’m surprised I’ve made it to book 4. The books are short reads (usually around 200 pages) and the plot moves quickly. Well sort of. Again I say, he is only halfway through his walk! That probably means nothing to you since I haven’t told you what its about. Here is a summary.
“Reeling from the sudden loss of his wife, his home, and his business, Alan Christoffersen, a once-successful advertising executive, has left everything he knew behind and set off on an extraordinary cross-country journey. Carrying only a backpack, he is walking from Seattle to Key West, the farthest destination on his map.”
PS, it would make a great series for a book club! Mr. RPE has consistently published one every spring since 2010.
I’m more than a little hesitant to encourage apps for kids because I just went to a conference where Dr. Dipesh Navsaria spoke on how bad screen time (tv, iPad, computer, ect) is for kids. However, I think there is some use to it if you do it right. So encouraging educational literacy apps is the road I’m going down. Here is a link to TONS of apps that can help with print awareness, vocabulary, comprehension, spelling AND MORE!
I’m just going to say what everyone is thinking. Book two in a trilogy usually sucks. I can name series after series that I’ve never completed because I got stalled on how much book two sucks compared to book one. Here are some that I remember & actually wish I could suffer through to find out what happens.
Fever (Chemical Garden trilogy) by Lauren DeStafano
Crossed (Matched trilogy) by Ally Condie
Don’t kill me, Catching Fire (Hunger Games trilogy) by Suzanne Collins
Spark (Sky Chasers trilogy) by Amy Kathleen Ryan.
I can’t count how many times people say, “book one was the best.” Why would I read books two and three if book one was the best? Especially if I don’t really think book one was all that awesome. That does not make me want to spend 5 more days of my life finishing the series. Now I will admit this may not be because the book sucks. It could be something else. It could be because publishers take advantage of trilogies and place them at least a year apart so when book two comes out you have to re-purchase (or re-check out) book one in order to remember what should be happening in book two. Let me tell you something. Ain’t nobody got time for that. There’s a whole OTHER list I could make on second series books that I really want to read but can’t because I forget what the hell happened in book one. Those previous books I have actually tried to read and didn’t like them (some of them I’ve gone back to more than once). Here’s two that I have that I WANT to read so bad but I’d have to go back and read book one first in order to understand.
Because it is my Blood (Birthright trilogy) by Gabrielle Zevin
Sapphire Blue (Ruby Red trilogy) by Kerstin Gier
And that ends my rant about sucky second series books.
I’ve never read anything by Elizabeth Berg but I’ve owned Open House for YEARS people. Just never opened it. But I might open it now because it sounds very similar to some of the storylines in Tapestry of Fortunes, which I enjoyed. There are four women characters but the main character is Cece. After her best friend dies she decides to quit her job & take a road trip to see a man she hasn’t seen in years. Her roommates, new ones since she also sold her house, all decide to go. They also have storylines but they’re not as strong and seem to be solved relatively easily. There’s also a sideline plot about Cece volunteering at a hospice. Overall it was a good book. Quick & enjoyable, with limited thinking.
One of the weirdest things about my life (in my opinion) is that my mother doesn’t like to read. Granted my mother and I don’t actually have a lot in common so I don’t know why I find that so odd but you’d think that a woman who raised a librarian would at least be a reader. She’s not. My dad is so maybe I got it from him. But when I come across articles like YA Mother-Daughter Reading Recommendations it melts my heart. I don’t want kids and since my mother doesn’t really read I’ll never be able to utilize these wonderful lists. But perhaps someone else out there can. So check it out!
Its also by the Horn Book Magazine, and they know what they’re talking about people.
Since I work with a lot of kids age 0-3 I often hear people say, well they can’t read. Yes, you’re right. Thank you Captain Obvious. But YOU can read TO THEM because presumably you CAN read. Right? Anyway, I think a lot of people also assume that once kids can read on their own they don’t have to read to them anymore. Which is sad. This article explains why it’s so important to read to older kids, even though they can read to themselves.
Jim Trelease, the author of The Read-Aloud Handbook says, “The first reason to read aloud to older kids is to consider the fact that a child’s reading level doesn’t catch up to his listening level until about the eighth grade. You have to hear it before you can speak it, and you have to speak it before you can read it. Reading at this level happens through the ear.” This same thing is true for little kids too. From age 0-3 parents are encouraged to speak to their kids about everything. Use big words, small words, any kind of word just to get them to hear it because then when they go to school and see it they’ll be able to read it better. For example, if I know my letters and their sounds and I’m trying to sound out a word I’ve never heard it will take me longer than if I try and sound it out and I’ve already heard it somewhere. Like delightful. Long word. Hard to get if you’ve never heard it before.
You can read the whole article about why its important here.