tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-86791121606257975682016-11-28T07:44:05.404-06:00Jillicious Readinga librarian savoring the sweetness of books &amp; a literary life! Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.comBlogger285125tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-69659416007931120002016-03-08T12:54:00.001-06:002016-03-08T19:45:24.544-06:005 Ways I Learned from the Caldecott Experience<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-rBWabpJ2a8E/Vt4AtSF8bJI/AAAAAAAAOm0/w1Bhc_opbdY/s1600/PicCollage.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" height="400" src="https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-rBWabpJ2a8E/Vt4AtSF8bJI/AAAAAAAAOm0/w1Bhc_opbdY/s400/PicCollage.jpg" width="400" /></a></div><br />I have not been posting for many months as I have been immersed in reading, rereading and preparing for the Caldecott discussions that took place in January (as well as keeping up with the madness of the middle school library!). &nbsp;After much sleep and an attempt to catch up on the rest of my life, I am returning to the blog! &nbsp;For the first post back, I must begin with some thoughts on the incredible Caldecott experience.<br /><br />Serving on the 2016 Caldecott Selection Committee was the fulfillment of a longtime dream. &nbsp;As a young elementary school teacher, I vividly remember sharing the books bearing these special seals with my students. Together we enjoyed the stories, observed the art, and discussed what made each book special. So many times my readers and I were guilty of judging the book by its cover (I know! Gasp!), later to be delightfully surprised by what we discovered inside. Secretly, I pondered what it would be like to be part of THE committee that selected the winning books. Now, <u>I</u> have experienced this incredible privilege. &nbsp;And what an honor and fantastic learning experience it was.<br /><br />At one of our first meetings, Viki Ash, our priority chair consultant, advised us to, "Come in as learners." &nbsp;This really struck me. &nbsp;I am a learner by nature, but this was a reminder that it was perfectly all right <i>not</i> to come in with all of the answers. &nbsp;That was not the expectation. &nbsp;Nor should it be your attitude! &nbsp;What a relief. &nbsp;Because I certainly didn't have all the answers. &nbsp;But, I did have a passion for children's literature and illustration, a dedication to the task I'd been given, a commitment to work hard, and a willingness to learn every step of the way! Here are five ways I learned and grew personally and professionally from this experience:<br /><br /><b>1. I learned from the books themselves.&nbsp;</b><br />I am amazed at all the information I learned this year about the world by reading the 2015 picture books! &nbsp;I learned about people who made a difference in their communities, about people who overcame incredible hardships to follow their dreams, and about people who are creating amazing art and music to bring beauty into the world. &nbsp;I learned about the ocean, animals, nature, and natural disasters. &nbsp;I laughed out loud at clever stories for the young (and the young at heart) and cried at stories of tragedy and loss. &nbsp;I experienced beautiful poetic verse and was moved to view the world around me in new ways. &nbsp;What a testament to the high quality of books that are being published every year for young readers and to the rich education that is available through books! &nbsp;And what a reminder of what picture books have to offer to readers of all ages.<br /><br /><br /><b>2. &nbsp;I learned from my students.&nbsp;</b><br />This year I formed a Caldecott Club to solicit input from readers. Each month a brought a big stack books to our after school meeting; then, our club, a small group of committed, opinionated ;) students, a few teachers, and my co-librarian Katherine, read, explored, observed, and shared their thoughts. &nbsp;My students are in grades 5 - 8, so they came at the task as readers, but also as art appreciators and critics. Most took it <i>very</i> seriously and had a lot to say about the books and the artwork. &nbsp;We didn't have a formal Mock Caldecott, but I gleaned a great deal from their observations and opinions at each meeting. &nbsp;They were thoughtful and articulate. &nbsp;They noticed things I did not. They often liked books I didn't think they would and vice versa. &nbsp;In short, they reminded me of how smart they are, how important it is that the books recognize this intelligence, and how delightful it is to experience literature through the eyes of younger readers! <br /><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-5gyTVnhQ-zU/Vt8YgFlvVGI/AAAAAAAAOn8/sMOSXv_9vpM/s1600/IMG_1579.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" height="320" src="https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-5gyTVnhQ-zU/Vt8YgFlvVGI/AAAAAAAAOn8/sMOSXv_9vpM/s320/IMG_1579.JPG" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;">A few members of the Caldecott Club diligently evaluating &nbsp;</td></tr></tbody></table><br /><b>3. &nbsp;I learned from my committee members.&nbsp;</b><br />In preparation for our discussions, I read, reread, observed, reread again, and took careful notes on the many, many eligible books. &nbsp;But, when we came together and began discussing each title, members of the committee pointed out things I NEVER noticed. &nbsp;The discussion of each book was greatly enriched because of what each member brought to the table. &nbsp;My fellow committee members broadened my experience of every title by noticing, questioning, and adding more. &nbsp;They challenged me to think differently and made me a deeper reader. &nbsp;I am forever thankful for what I learned from each member. &nbsp;This truly was the the deepest, richest, most exhausting, and most rewarding book discussion I have ever been a part of. &nbsp;And, I am a better literary professional because of it.<br /><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-bdEus0JeUZE/Vt8WUGK8yCI/AAAAAAAAOnc/SbKgoqv7hzs/s1600/ALAmidwinter2016%2B174016.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" height="266" src="https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-bdEus0JeUZE/Vt8WUGK8yCI/AAAAAAAAOnc/SbKgoqv7hzs/s400/ALAmidwinter2016%2B174016.JPG" width="400" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;">One of our very official photos&nbsp;</td></tr></tbody></table><br /><b>4. I learned from the process.</b><br />From Day One, the advice given to ALSC selection committee members is, "Trust the process." &nbsp;Our process is confidential, but I will say that I did come to trust this valuable system. &nbsp;Without going into specifics, I will say that for me "trusting the process" came to mean ...<br /><br /><ul><li><i>Thankfulness for a committee.</i> &nbsp;As I mentioned above working with a committee of readers who are passionate about children's literature and committed to the task at hand means that we all have strong opinions. &nbsp;But, those strong opinions made us challenge each other and led to stronger, more thoughtful decisions in the end. &nbsp;</li><li><i>Thankfulness for the <a href="http://www.ala.org/alsc/awardsgrants/bookmedia/caldecottmedal/caldecottterms/caldecottterms" target="_blank">Caldecott Medal criteria</a>. </i>&nbsp;The specific criteria guided us throughout the process. &nbsp;We went back to them again and again, making sure we were staying true to our charge and that the books on the table were meeting or exceeding these criteria - not our personal criteria, the Caldecott criteria. They were our beacon and navigated us throughout the process. &nbsp;</li><li><i>Thankfulness for the system. </i>&nbsp;There is a system in place for the nominating, discussing, and voting. &nbsp;And it works. &nbsp;Each year is different. There is a whole new bounty of amazing books to enjoy, explore, and evaluate. &nbsp;The selection committee brings new opinions and perspectives. &nbsp;There is passionate debate. &nbsp;But, the criteria and the system stay the same. And in the end, it all works and the most distinguished American picture book for children (and honors?) <i>is</i> named and children's literature <i>is</i> celebrated!&nbsp;</li></ul><b><br /></b><b>5. &nbsp;I learned the joy of celebrating literature!&nbsp;</b><br />This was more of a reminder.... a lesson I never grow weary of learning in new ways. &nbsp;Celebrating literature is what I love to do; it's why I became I librarian. &nbsp;But, this experience allowed me some new celebrations. &nbsp;First, we were able to join our wonderful committee chair Rachel Payne in making the early morning phone calls to the winning illustrators to share the good news before it was announced to the world. &nbsp;What an incredible experience! &nbsp;There were sleepy hellos, screams, yells, and many, many tears. &nbsp;At not yet 7 am., I had cried away most of my makeup (Why wasn't I wearing waterproof mascara??) and was absolutely exhausted! &nbsp;But it was soooo worth it!<br /><br />Then, it was onto the <a href="http://www.ala.org/news/mediapresscenter/presskits/youthmediaawards/alayouthmediaawards" target="_blank">2016 ALA Youth Media Awards</a>. &nbsp;I absolutely love these announcements each year. &nbsp;There is not much better than cheering for the authors, illustrators, and publishers of books that engage, entertain, and inspire readers. &nbsp;This year was so special, because I got to sit with my fellow committee members - and now dear friends - in our matching t-shirts :) and cheer for the books we had selected. &nbsp;We were celebrating these amazing illustrators, their art and stories, as well as the work we had done together. &nbsp;We were also able to cheer for the other winning authors and illustrators (such a treat to see many of our books win additional awards!) and to cheer for the work of our fellow committees, the first time for many of us, truly understanding the time, work and commitment that went into their decisions.<br /><br />After a celebratory breakfast, we went on the exhibit floor and got to visit the winning publishers' booths and put the Caldecott Medal and Honor stickers on the winning books!! &nbsp;Wow. &nbsp;So much fun! We were videoed and tweeted by Little, Brown the publisher of <i>Finding Winnie</i>, and it was even <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2016/01/11/living/newbery-caldecott-youth-media-awards-2016-feat/index.html" target="_blank">posted on CNN.com</a>. What??!<br /><br /><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><div dir="ltr" lang="en">Time to put the seal on! <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Caldecott16?src=hash">#Caldecott16</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/SophieBlackall">@SophieBlackall</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/lindsaymattick">@lindsaymattick</a> <a href="https://t.co/evuD6k0uhb">pic.twitter.com/evuD6k0uhb</a></div>— Little, Brown School (@lbschool) <a href="https://twitter.com/lbschool/status/686586955111501824">January 11, 2016</a></blockquote><br /><br /><script async="" charset="utf-8" src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script><br /><br />These celebrations are the big ones. &nbsp;They are exhilarating and rejuvenating. &nbsp;They allow us to cheer for the stars of children's literature and to celebrate the impact these books make on the lives of young readers. &nbsp;They also remind us of why we do what we do. &nbsp;But, the small, daily celebrations are just as important. &nbsp;My heart leaps as much (or more!) when a student comes running in after reading a book I've recommended, thanking me, and demanding another. ;) &nbsp;And, that's why it's okay that some personal favorites are always left out of the big announcements and award lists. &nbsp;That's why it's such a privilege to be a librarian. &nbsp;I can continue to celebrate books all year long by making sure those favorites find their way into the hands of their readers in the months and years to come.<br /><br />So .... Many, many boxes of books delivered to my doorstep. &nbsp;A year of reading, rereading, and note-taking. &nbsp;Hours and hours of intense, incredible book discussion. Several lessons learned. &nbsp;Fourteen new friends made. &nbsp;One gold medal winner, four honors. and a once-in-a-lifetime experience.<br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-PqG-sptobgY/Vt8WhlPFvwI/AAAAAAAAOnk/PiioQ2Tdx6g/s1600/caldecott-committee.png" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" height="398" src="https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-PqG-sptobgY/Vt8WhlPFvwI/AAAAAAAAOnk/PiioQ2Tdx6g/s400/caldecott-committee.png" width="400" /></a></div><br /><b><br /></b><b>More ...</b><br /><br />For more about our selections and about spreading the love for your annual favorites, read this lovely <a href="http://www.hbook.com/2016/01/blogs/calling-caldecott/the-2016-real-committee-weighs-in/#_" target="_blank">guest post on the <i>Calling Caldecott</i> blog of <i>The Horn Book</i> website written by our committee chair, Rachel Payne</a>. <br /><br /><br />For more about the Caldecott process, read this <a href="http://childrenscornerkm.blogspot.com/2016/01/back-to-blog-after-bucket-list.html" target="_blank">post by my fellow committee member, librarian and reviewer, the brilliant Karen MacPherson</a>.<br /><br /><br />For a tug at your heart, watch this video from the lovely and talented Sophie Blackall about winning the medal. &nbsp;I've watched it again and again! <br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" class="YOUTUBE-iframe-video" data-thumbnail-src="https://i.ytimg.com/vi/u5McGgz0-FI/0.jpg" frameborder="0" height="266" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/u5McGgz0-FI?feature=player_embedded" width="320"></iframe></div>&nbsp; <br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"></div><br />For an interview with Sophie B and the other winning illustrators, visit the one and only&nbsp;<a href="http://mrschureads.blogspot.com/2016/01/caldecott-medalist-sophie-blackall.html" target="_blank">Mr. Schu's blog</a>. &nbsp;Mr. Schu is the ultimate Book Celebrator!! <br /><br /><br />It just keeps getting better and better! &nbsp;Two very special treasures that recently arrived in the mail and will soon be added to my office walls! &nbsp; I came sprinting into the house after each arrival jumping and screaming and basically had to be peeled off the ceiling! &nbsp;:)<br /><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-cU6w7y-thI4/Vt4BArmPr_I/AAAAAAAAOm4/Tdb3Z45I0xg/s1600/Letter%2B-%2BHenkes.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" height="400" src="https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-cU6w7y-thI4/Vt4BArmPr_I/AAAAAAAAOm4/Tdb3Z45I0xg/s400/Letter%2B-%2BHenkes.jpg" width="300" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;">A letter TO ME from Kevin Henkes!&nbsp;</td></tr></tbody></table><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-wQGbVCPCzaU/Vt4BMnueqCI/AAAAAAAAOm8/EvfoBdgJEoE/s1600/Painting%2B-%2BWinnie.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" height="400" src="https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-wQGbVCPCzaU/Vt4BMnueqCI/AAAAAAAAOm8/EvfoBdgJEoE/s400/Painting%2B-%2BWinnie.jpg" width="300" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;">A painting FOR ME from Sophie Blackall with letter on the back!&nbsp;</td></tr></tbody></table>Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-5412184081910202542015-04-11T15:48:00.003-05:002015-04-11T15:50:42.277-05:00Jillicious Reading: ALA Midwinter!<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-O4lhOnH7O3o/VQMbfX5cxuI/AAAAAAAAOFU/l1e5BULYpKE/s1600/MW15.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-O4lhOnH7O3o/VQMbfX5cxuI/AAAAAAAAOFU/l1e5BULYpKE/s1600/MW15.jpg" height="100" width="400" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">TLA is next week, so I thought I better get my post up from my last conference ... ALA Midwinter... In January!&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">January is not my favorite month. &nbsp;I am not a winter girl, and getting up early on cold, dreary days is not my gift. &nbsp;But there is one thing I do love about January ... ALA Midwinter! &nbsp;I started attending a few years ago, and now it one of my favorite things about the New Year. &nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">The one down side is that the event is usually held in a cold weather city, BUT they are fabulous cities worth visiting so I can suffer through. &nbsp;;)&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">This year's event was held in the grand metropolis of Chicago. &nbsp;I flew in with several librarian friends; as soon as we arrived, the book events began! &nbsp;Some of the highlights included:&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><b><br /></b></span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><b>Macmillan Dinner</b></span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">Macmillan hosted a lovely dinner with their editors. &nbsp;I love the Macmillan team and was able to see old friends as well as meet new ones, including the lovely Christy Ottaviano who leads an imprint with Henry Holt. &nbsp;One of Christy's authors is April Henry who is a very popular author in our library, but whose books have been a topic of discussion in the book debate in our school district this year. &nbsp;I really enjoyed talking with Christy about Ms. Henry's books and other upcoming titles in her imprint. It was a cozy night of casual conversation with the maybe the most delicious chicken I've ever eaten (and I don't even really like chicken!) &nbsp;</span><br /><b style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></b><b style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">Previews, previews, previews!</b><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-La9VHUvyzsI/VQMk9rNf7EI/AAAAAAAAOFk/enxYeVSBdKo/s1600/IMG_0170.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-La9VHUvyzsI/VQMk9rNf7EI/AAAAAAAAOFk/enxYeVSBdKo/s1600/IMG_0170.JPG" height="200" width="200" /></a></div><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">At these conferences, the publishers host previews of their upcoming titles and I love these events. They are like fashion shows of the upcoming trends and styles! &nbsp;I come away with a long list of titles to order for the library, to recommend to teachers and friends, and to add to my reading list. &nbsp;These amazing people even send you off with a bag of Advanced Reading Copies so you can start your reading immediately! &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">The <b>Little, Brown</b> preview usually includes a surprise author visit. &nbsp;This time it was <a href="http://www.katesbooks.com/en/hello" target="_blank">Kate Hannigan</a> who spoke about her new book, <b><i><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Detectives-Assistant-Kate-Hannigan/dp/0316403512/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1426269317&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=the+detective%27s+assistant" target="_blank">The Detective's Assistant</a></i></b>. &nbsp;This novel is based on the true story of Kate Warne, the first female detective. Ms. Hannigan's enthusiasm for Ms. Warne's story and the research she put into it had us all enthralled. &nbsp;This one is at the top of my stack!&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-QN8A8lfcuqA/VQMll0iV7gI/AAAAAAAAOF0/FGe8hOQWJA4/s1600/Hannigan.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-QN8A8lfcuqA/VQMll0iV7gI/AAAAAAAAOF0/FGe8hOQWJA4/s1600/Hannigan.jpg" height="292" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Kate Hannigan speaking about <i>The Detective's Assistant</i> while Victoria Stapleton <br />displays some of the old books used for her research. &nbsp;:)</span></td></tr></tbody></table><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">The <b>Simon Schuster </b>preview was a super fun event. &nbsp;First, we heard from the amazing Sharon Draper! &nbsp;Yowza. &nbsp;She is such a talent and an absolute firecracker! &nbsp; Then, we had "speed dating" with the editors. &nbsp;They each visited our tables and told us about some of the books coming out this spring. &nbsp;It was so much fun, and again, I left with a long list and stack of books! &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-K1T0kJU9cUY/VQMna6xkf9I/AAAAAAAAOGA/mzwX35UvXE8/s1600/Draper%2BCollage.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-K1T0kJU9cUY/VQMna6xkf9I/AAAAAAAAOGA/mzwX35UvXE8/s1600/Draper%2BCollage.jpg" height="160" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Sharon Draper talking about the release of her new book, <i><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Stella-Starlight-Sharon-M-Draper/dp/1442494972/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1426270104&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=stella+by+starlight" target="_blank">Stella by Starlight.</a></i> &nbsp;</span></td></tr></tbody></table><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><b>Scholastic</b> is beginning a new partnership with a UK imprint led by <b>David Fickling</b>. &nbsp;They hosted an event that showcased the types of books this collaboration will provide. &nbsp;Oh my word. &nbsp;This was one of my favorite parts of the conference. &nbsp;David Fickling is a British rock star! &nbsp;Clapping and bubbling with enthusiasm, he took the stage, accompanied by loud music (I think it was David Bowie, but I was too swept away to remember), and within in moments had the room on their feet cheering. He went on to eloquently, cleverly and riotously talk about his authors and their books and concluded by praising librarians for the work we do and challenging us to continue to carry our torches our high! &nbsp;It was so inspiring and so much fun. &nbsp;If I could start each day with David Fickling launching me of into the world of books and libraries, oh what mountains I could move! &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-xkzQPuuE-rk/VQMyWSwkJQI/AAAAAAAAOGQ/I9WhWgyqq5s/s1600/IMG_0173.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-xkzQPuuE-rk/VQMyWSwkJQI/AAAAAAAAOGQ/I9WhWgyqq5s/s1600/IMG_0173.JPG" height="320" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">The Great David Fickling complete with signature bow tie!&nbsp;</span></td></tr></tbody></table><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Thank you to these publishers and to <b>Candlewick</b> and <b>BoydsMill Press</b> who also hosted lovely previews. &nbsp;I was honored to be included in each event.&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><b><br /></b></span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><b>Random House Dinner</b></span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">The amazing<b> Laura Antonacci</b> always hosts the most delightful events, and this conference was no different. &nbsp;The Random House dinner offered a chance to dine with beloved authors <b>Chris Grabenstein</b>, <b>Liesl Shurtliff</b>, and <b>Rebecca Stead</b>. They are all so talented, down-to-earth, and delightful. &nbsp;Another highlight getting to sit across the table from celebrity librarian <b><a href="http://mrschureads.blogspot.com/" target="_blank">Mr. Schu</a></b> who literally knows everyone and everything! &nbsp;It was a fabulous night.&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-O-fcwt-gXxU/VQM7LiIvpaI/AAAAAAAAOGw/4-_460fkGIM/s1600/IMG_0198.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-O-fcwt-gXxU/VQM7LiIvpaI/AAAAAAAAOGw/4-_460fkGIM/s1600/IMG_0198.JPG" height="320" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Rebecca Stead talking with Wendy Lamb about her new book <i><b><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Goodbye-Stranger-Rebecca-Stead/dp/0385743173/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1426275208&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=goodbye+stranger" target="_blank">Goodbye Stranger</a></b></i> (which is A+, by the way!)&nbsp;</span></td></tr></tbody></table><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ccHeZByVStM/VQM7MJRbHaI/AAAAAAAAOHA/4OtRmfsgRQI/s1600/IMG_0187.PNG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ccHeZByVStM/VQM7MJRbHaI/AAAAAAAAOHA/4OtRmfsgRQI/s1600/IMG_0187.PNG" height="320" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><b><i><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Jack-True-Story-Beanstalk/dp/0385755791/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1426275274&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=jack+and+liesl" target="_blank">Jack</a></i></b> and Liesl! &nbsp;:)</span>&nbsp;</td></tr></tbody></table><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><b><br /></b></span><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-kODyYJHlWj4/VQNBUkrMB5I/AAAAAAAAOHM/8CdwyRymp3s/s1600/Chris.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-kODyYJHlWj4/VQNBUkrMB5I/AAAAAAAAOHM/8CdwyRymp3s/s1600/Chris.jpg" height="320" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Chris Grabenstein talking about new book <b><i><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Island-Dr-Libris-Chris-Grabenstein/dp/0385388446/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1426276771&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=island+of+libris" target="_blank">The Island of Dr. Libris</a></i></b> and making the <br />crowd roar with his hilarious stories!&nbsp;</span></td></tr></tbody></table><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><b><br /></b></span><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-t6WROaCXyh0/VQM7Ltt1J1I/AAAAAAAAOGs/K-3WwozQ71U/s1600/IMG_0181.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-t6WROaCXyh0/VQM7Ltt1J1I/AAAAAAAAOGs/K-3WwozQ71U/s1600/IMG_0181.JPG" height="320" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Mr. Schu!</span></td></tr></tbody></table><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><b><br /></b></span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><b>Penguin Middle Grade Round Table&nbsp;</b></span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">A few librarians and teachers from various settings were invited to be a part of a discussion about middle grade readers hosted by Penguin. &nbsp;I was delighted to be a part of this conversation and really enjoyed hearing from others about their readers. &nbsp;It was also a great chance to get to know some new people, which I always love. &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><table cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="float: right; margin-left: 1em; text-align: right;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-qq-ZyQJIZxk/VQM472sfVdI/AAAAAAAAOGg/L9avk801cAA/s1600/IMG_0199.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-qq-ZyQJIZxk/VQM472sfVdI/AAAAAAAAOGg/L9avk801cAA/s1600/IMG_0199.JPG" height="320" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Ms. Bradley signing a book for my friend Karen Kessel!&nbsp;</span></td></tr></tbody></table><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">At the end of discussion, we were joined by author </span><b style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">Kimberly Brubaker Bradley</b><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">. &nbsp;Ms. Bradley talked about her new book </span><i style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><b><a href="http://www.amazon.com/War-that-Saved-My-Life/dp/0803740816/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1426277670&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=the+war+that+saved+my+life" target="_blank">The War that Saved My Life</a></b></i><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">. &nbsp;This moving historical novel tells the story of two siblings who, like thousands of children during WWII, were evacuated from London to the British countryside under the fear of German bombings on the city. Through the eyes of Ada, a young girl who has experienced incredible abuse and trauma, Ms. Bradley provides a fascinating glimpse of history and a story of&nbsp;perseverance and&nbsp;triumph.&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">It was a treat to hear more about the inspiration for the novel and the research that went into the writing. The-girl-who-still-wants-a-pony in me was also delighted to hear more about Ms. Bradley's horse that was the inspiration for Butter, the horse in the novel. &nbsp;;) &nbsp;And we were all excited to hear that the author is working on the sequel! &nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><b><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Penguin One Book Dinner</span></b><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">The beautiful and talented <b>Venessa Carson </b>hosts the most fabulous events for Penguin. The One Book Dinner was the perfect last party of the conference. &nbsp;We weathered the cold temps and snow drifts to make our way to this cozy gathering in the basement of The Gage restaurant... And we were in for a treat! &nbsp;The editors each told us about their ONE favorite release of 2015. &nbsp;What a fun way to hear about new books. &nbsp;I am so excited about each of the new titles they spotlighted and have been madly reading since then! &nbsp;One of my first favorites is the YA novel <b><i><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Trouble-Friend-Mine-Stephanie-Tromly/dp/0525428402/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1428784523&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=trouble+is+a+friend+of+mine" target="_blank">Trouble is a Friend of Mine</a></i></b> by Stephanie Tromly. The unique format of the evening and my hilarious table of new friends made for a fabulous night.&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><b>Caldecott Committee</b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Of course, the high point of the conference was getting to attend my first meeting as a member of the 2016 Caldecott Selection Committee. &nbsp;I am so thrilled to be a part of this committee; it's a dream come true. &nbsp;It was great to finally meet everyone face-to-face and to begin this exciting process. &nbsp;I believe our different perspectives and variety of experiences will come together to create a strong, knowledgeable committee. &nbsp;And, we all have two very important things in common: a passion for children's picture books and a desire to make the best selections possible! &nbsp;It's going to be a challenge, but, I trust, a very rewarding experience. May the most&nbsp;distinguished contribution to picture&nbsp;books win!</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><b>ALA YMA #2015 Announcements!&nbsp;</b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">My conference always ends with the announcement of the year's ALA Youth Media Awards. This annual event is so much fun. &nbsp;The room is abuzz with anticipation ... everyone making predictions and hoping to hear their favorites announced. &nbsp;When the announcements begin, there are wild cheers, gasps of surprise, and Twitter is set afire! &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-sZSREhW6ZbA/VSmCVk0GjxI/AAAAAAAAOH4/nyzHQf2XysM/s1600/IMG_0203.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-sZSREhW6ZbA/VSmCVk0GjxI/AAAAAAAAOH4/nyzHQf2XysM/s1600/IMG_0203.JPG" height="320" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Minutes before the announcements begin!</span></td></tr></tbody></table><br /><table cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-wfUTB6JnwJ8/VSmCYFQRntI/AAAAAAAAOIE/yV54UHHl8dI/s1600/IMG_0204.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-wfUTB6JnwJ8/VSmCYFQRntI/AAAAAAAAOIE/yV54UHHl8dI/s1600/IMG_0204.JPG" height="180" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">The Texan librarians in the room!&nbsp;</span></td></tr></tbody></table><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">This year was no different .... except for when the Caldecott awards were named... my heart was aflutter knowing that next year, I will have had a hand in making these selections! &nbsp;Wow. What a privilege.&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">This year's medal winner was&nbsp;<i><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Adventures-Beekle-Unimaginary-Friend/dp/0316199982/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1428784556&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=beekle" target="_blank"><b>The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend</b> </a></i>by Dan Santat. &nbsp;An endearing story featuring the adorable Beekle who daringly travels to the world to find his Imaginary Friend. The illustrations are delightfully unique making this is a charmer for sure. &nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-UR7RT5s_p18/VSmCYDVz04I/AAAAAAAAOIA/CPvIzy63mAo/s1600/IMG_0206.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-UR7RT5s_p18/VSmCYDVz04I/AAAAAAAAOIA/CPvIzy63mAo/s1600/IMG_0206.JPG" height="320" width="320" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><b><br /></b></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><b>Unexpected Change in Plans</b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">I mentioned my conference <i>always</i> ends with the announcements. &nbsp;Well, not this year. Due to a huge snowstorm, my flight was cancelled and I ended up spending another night in Chicago. Although ready to get home, I enjoyed some extra time with friends. Wonderful Thom Barthelmess invited us to his home (a transformed church!) for dinner. &nbsp;It was a cozy, fun evening that became the perfect end to the Midwinter 2015.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-g_kzw1gbVqU/VSmD71GTZ_I/AAAAAAAAOIY/TmQ1TcWcA8c/s1600/IMG_0210.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-g_kzw1gbVqU/VSmD71GTZ_I/AAAAAAAAOIY/TmQ1TcWcA8c/s1600/IMG_0210.JPG" height="180" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Thom's super cool living area!</span></td></tr></tbody></table><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-r97p9HzaSKw/VSmD70Nv6RI/AAAAAAAAOIU/zDx33rOr5Pw/s1600/IMG_0209.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-r97p9HzaSKw/VSmD70Nv6RI/AAAAAAAAOIU/zDx33rOr5Pw/s1600/IMG_0209.JPG" height="320" width="240" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">June and Olive waiting for me at home. &nbsp;I was definitely glad to see them the next day!</span></td></tr></tbody></table><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">So, another ALA Midwinter is in the books. &nbsp;New friends, new books, new opportunities, and the perfect remedy for my winter blues. &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">Now spring has sprung, and it's time for the Texas Library Association Annual Conference. &nbsp;I head to Austin on Monday for a week full of learning, connecting, and fest-ing! &nbsp;Let the fun begin. &nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">NEW FEATURE... Shop this post!&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span> <script charset="utf-8" src="http://ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?rt=tf_cw&amp;ServiceVersion=20070822&amp;MarketPlace=US&amp;ID=V20070822%2FUS%2Fjillicreadin-20%2F8010%2Fe83f0154-e4d4-4c97-8f65-0390e82cf4d3&amp;Operation=GetScriptTemplate" type="text/javascript"> </script> <noscript><a HREF="http://ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?rt=tf_cw&ServiceVersion=20070822&MarketPlace=US&ID=V20070822%2FUS%2Fjillicreadin-20%2F8010%2Fe83f0154-e4d4-4c97-8f65-0390e82cf4d3&Operation=NoScript">Amazon.com Widgets</A></noscript>Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-1063065467136009142015-01-02T17:27:00.002-06:002015-01-02T17:27:27.539-06:00Jillicious Reading - Fourteen (Plus One!) Favs of 2014<span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">The past semester has been crazy busy. &nbsp;They all are, but with added responsibilities at work, it seems I have struggled more than ever to find time for all I want to do. &nbsp;I haven't read as much as I like and have blogged even less. &nbsp;But, it's a New Year, a fresh start, and a chance to begin anew! &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">I thought I'd start with some of my favorites of the past year. &nbsp;Then, I'll try to post my recent read more regularly in 2015 ... and maybe even actually keep up with my progress on Good Reads! &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Here's to great books and new beginnings!&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif; font-size: large;"><b><u>Picture Books</u></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">1. &nbsp;<b><i>Sparky</i></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">by Jenny Offill, illustrated by Chris Appelhans</span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><i>This unusual pet can't do many tricks but turns out to be the perfect companion. I adore sloths, so that drew me right in. &nbsp;But, I quickly fell in love with the charming illustrations, the humor, and the hand-lettered text. &nbsp;</i>Sparky!<i> is a true delight. &nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><i><br /></i></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-LLXq81tEqtg/VKXsXabC58I/AAAAAAAAOAQ/fN1i0ysJ8oE/s1600/Sparky.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-LLXq81tEqtg/VKXsXabC58I/AAAAAAAAOAQ/fN1i0ysJ8oE/s1600/Sparky.jpg" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">2. &nbsp;<b><i>Gaston</i></b>&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by Kelly KiPucchio, illustrated by Christian Robinson</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>Gaston isn't quite like his sisters, and Antoinette isn't quite like her brothers. &nbsp;But, as it turns out, each pup is in the right dog house. &nbsp;I love this book's bold, abstract artwork, sense of humor, and messages of acceptance and belonging. &nbsp;And, of course, all the dogs! ... with funny names ..... and some wearing kerchiefs! &nbsp; :) &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-JYql2eEU-CM/VKXs5C0MZbI/AAAAAAAAOAw/c0lJd_XlSy8/s1600/gaston.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-JYql2eEU-CM/VKXs5C0MZbI/AAAAAAAAOAw/c0lJd_XlSy8/s1600/gaston.jpg" height="320" width="256" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">3. &nbsp;<b><i>The Farmer and the Clown</i></b>&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">by Marla Frazee</span><br /><i style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">When a little clown bounces off of a circus train, an old farmer rescues him.&nbsp;</i><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><i>I am a longtime admirer of Marla Frazee and pretty much love everything she does. &nbsp;But, this wordless book is a true stunner. &nbsp;</i></span><i style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">Frazee packs so much story, feeling, and heart in the pages of this book. &nbsp;From the big open skies and the wide horizons to the expressions and movements of the little clown, every stroke is perfect and meaningful. &nbsp;This gentle story of unexpected surprises and journeys home is a grand achievement. &nbsp;</i><br /><i style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">** This is my prediction for the winner of the Caldecott Medal :)&nbsp;</i><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Wr8UxU8rMx8/VKXtQ6a-gTI/AAAAAAAAOA4/Pl85ug3ler8/s1600/farmer%2Band%2Bclown.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Wr8UxU8rMx8/VKXtQ6a-gTI/AAAAAAAAOA4/Pl85ug3ler8/s1600/farmer%2Band%2Bclown.jpg" height="260" width="320" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif; font-size: large;"><b><u><br /></u></b></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif; font-size: large;"><b><u>Nonfiction</u></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><b><u><br /></u></b></span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">4. <b><i>&nbsp;Ivan: The Remarkable True Story of the Shopping Mall Gorilla&nbsp;</i></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">by Katherine Applegate, illustrated by G. Brian Karas</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>My first reading of </i>Ivan<i> was the display copy&nbsp;</i></span><i style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">in the exhibit hall&nbsp;</i><i style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">at ALA Annual and within minutes I was in tears. &nbsp;I loved </i><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">The One and Only Ivan</span><i style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"> so much, and I felt this was the PERFECT picture book companion. &nbsp;Katherine Applegate retells the story brilliantly and G. Brian Karas's artwork is so compelling, expertly depicting the gorilla and his journey. &nbsp;After reading, it took me several minutes to pull myself together. &nbsp;The book's editor was standing there; she felt so sorry for this crazy, sniffling mess of a woman that she gave me an Ivan tote bag! &nbsp;:/&nbsp;</i><br /><i style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></i><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-vnPLZ5emr-A/VKXtva8JgTI/AAAAAAAAOBA/2vJviZBDpP8/s1600/Ivan.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-vnPLZ5emr-A/VKXtva8JgTI/AAAAAAAAOBA/2vJviZBDpP8/s1600/Ivan.jpg" /></a></div><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">5. <b><i>The Scraps Book: Notes from a Colorful Life</i></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by Lois Ehlert&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>I would love to be an artist and love all things having to do with art. &nbsp;So, of course, I adored Ehlert's book telling how she grew as an artist, developed her unique collage style, and became a book illustrator and author. &nbsp;My favorite page says: "I created lots of art, though not for books right away. But I didn't worry. Everyone needs time to develop their dreams. &nbsp;An egg in the nest doesn't become a bird overnight." &nbsp;This is wonderful encouragement to a dreamer who is still developing. &nbsp;;)&nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Ix2MJbD4l4k/VKXuUhW9vuI/AAAAAAAAOBI/rbZR5O4zYv4/s1600/scraps.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Ix2MJbD4l4k/VKXuUhW9vuI/AAAAAAAAOBI/rbZR5O4zYv4/s1600/scraps.jpg" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">6. &nbsp;</span><b style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><i>Brown Girl Dreaming&nbsp;</i></b><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by Jacqueline Woodson</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>Jacqueline Woodson contributed a beautiful memoir to the world this year. &nbsp;</i>Brown Girl Dreaming<i> tells her story of growing up in two very different worlds - South Carolina with her grandparents and then Brooklyn with her single mother. &nbsp;She describes how she overcame a struggle to read and eventually found her voice in the gift of weaving words into amazing stories. &nbsp;<a href="http://www.jilliciousreading.com/2014/10/jillicious-reading-memoirs.html" target="_blank">Click here for my original post</a> about this outstanding book.</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>** This is my prediction for the winner of the Newbery Medal &nbsp;:) &nbsp;</i>&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/--5g9xVsCAjs/VKXsZqfov2I/AAAAAAAAOAk/Kqt6Q238EWE/s1600/bROWN%2BGIRL.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/--5g9xVsCAjs/VKXsZqfov2I/AAAAAAAAOAk/Kqt6Q238EWE/s1600/bROWN%2BGIRL.jpg" height="320" width="211" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><b><i><br /></i></b></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><b><i>7. El Deafo&nbsp;</i></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by Cece Bell&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>Another memoir, I loved this year was</i>&nbsp;El Deafo. &nbsp;<i>This is&nbsp;Cece Bell's story of growing up hearing impaired and how she learned to embrace her difference and see it as a superpower! &nbsp;<a href="http://www.jilliciousreading.com/2014/10/jillicious-reading-memoirs.html" target="_blank">I wrote about this unique, inspiring graphic novel memoir in this post too</a>.&nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-2rPgtRvax0M/VKXsUtwL9NI/AAAAAAAAOAI/U-i81ktSe6E/s1600/El%2BDeafo.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-2rPgtRvax0M/VKXsUtwL9NI/AAAAAAAAOAI/U-i81ktSe6E/s1600/El%2BDeafo.jpg" height="320" width="212" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif; font-size: large;"><b><u>Middle Grade</u></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">8. &nbsp;<b><i>The Meaning of Maggie&nbsp;</i></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by Megan Jean Sovern</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>Maggie is not your typical 11 year old and is also very different from her two older sisters. &nbsp;While they are interested in boys, make-up and popularity, Maggie is focused on her grades, stocks, defending her Science Fair win, and being President of the United States one day. &nbsp;That is until the whole family's life is turned upside down when her father is diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and confined to a wheelchair. &nbsp;This is the story of "the year that changed everything."&nbsp;</i></span><br /><i style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></i><i style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">Maggie is a hilarious, honest, spunky character. &nbsp;I love her uniqueness, and the way she deals with her family, more the parent than the youngest daughter. &nbsp;The novel is an authentic look at how a family pulls together to face the challenges of illness .... there are moments of laughter, tears, breakdowns, and triumphs. &nbsp;And Maggie is an unforgettable narrator, calling it all like she sees it every step of the way. &nbsp;</i><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-sSQNMiLKCqI/VKXvaRD5xiI/AAAAAAAAOBY/zJT-yBLPYK4/s1600/maggie.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-sSQNMiLKCqI/VKXvaRD5xiI/AAAAAAAAOBY/zJT-yBLPYK4/s1600/maggie.jpg" height="320" width="227" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">9. <b><i>&nbsp;Courage for Beginners&nbsp;</i></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by Karen Harrington</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>Seventh grade is not going how Mysti planned at all. &nbsp;Her longtime friend, Anibal, is suddenly popular and has left her at the table of misfits in the cafeteria. &nbsp;Her father is in the hospital and she is having to hold the family together because her mother doesn't leave the house - something no one knows about. &nbsp;It's all getting to be a bit too much. &nbsp;But maybe a new friend and a quirky Texas History teacher will help Mysti find the courage she needs to carry on.&nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i><br /></i></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>Karen Harrington is one of my new favorite authors. &nbsp;I love her Texas settings, her quirky characters, her female heroines who are stronger than they think they are, and the way she explores mental illnesses. &nbsp;</i>Courage for Beginners<i> is funny, honest, heart-wrenching, and hopeful. I can't wait for her next book! &nbsp;&nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-etkWs0LAhpI/VKXve8MUUyI/AAAAAAAAOBg/5xzP8qw3H-Q/s1600/courage.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-etkWs0LAhpI/VKXve8MUUyI/AAAAAAAAOBg/5xzP8qw3H-Q/s1600/courage.jpg" height="320" width="214" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">10. &nbsp;<b><i>Revolution&nbsp;</i></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by Deborah Wiles</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>This follow-up to </i>Countdown<i> takes place in the summer of 1964 - the Freedom Summer - in Greenwood, Mississippi. &nbsp;Sunny doesn't know what it all means, just that volunteers are coming to the town from up North to register blacks to vote and the town's adults are not happy about it. &nbsp;Sunny has her own problems as she is trying to get used to her new stepmother and siblings. As the summer progresses, though, her world view starts to expand. &nbsp;Local businesses start to close so they don't have to serve blacks, and Sunny starts to wonder what's right and what she really believes. &nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i><br /></i></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>Wiles once again effectively uses newspaper clippings, song lyrics, photographs, excerpts from speeches, Bible verses, and other&nbsp;memorabilia to set the stage and provide details of the time period. &nbsp;She skillfully blends Sunny's story with the historical landscape. &nbsp;Sunny is plucky and daring - the right character to question what is happening and to begin to think for herself. &nbsp;The book is tied to the characters in </i>Countdown<i> in a clever way. &nbsp;This is a quality novel and an excellent introduction to (or a brush up on!) the Freedom Summer. &nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-w7ctHF642xg/VKXsUlNF5lI/AAAAAAAAOAM/i8FKkzagN_4/s1600/Revolution.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-w7ctHF642xg/VKXsUlNF5lI/AAAAAAAAOAM/i8FKkzagN_4/s1600/Revolution.jpg" height="320" width="245" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif; font-size: large;"><b><u><br /></u></b></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif; font-size: large;"><b><u>Young Adult&nbsp;</u></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">11. &nbsp;<b><i>To All the Boys I've Loved Before&nbsp;</i></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by Jenny Han</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>To Jenny Han: &nbsp;I love your books and this one is my favorite! &nbsp;<a href="http://www.jilliciousreading.com/2014/08/jillicious-reading-to-all-boys-ive.html" target="_blank">Click here to read my original post </a>about this engaging novel that explores the challenges of family, loss, identity, and first loves.&nbsp;</i></span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-MZDM7zxTrRc/VKXsZ9YaOJI/AAAAAAAAOAg/dqgYckf74yk/s1600/boys%2BI've%2Bloved.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-MZDM7zxTrRc/VKXsZ9YaOJI/AAAAAAAAOAg/dqgYckf74yk/s1600/boys%2BI've%2Bloved.jpg" height="320" width="212" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">12. &nbsp;<b><i>The Winner's Curse</i></b>&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by Marie Rutkoski</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">The Winner's Curse<i> is a very original novel. That's what I loved about it. &nbsp;It was quite different from anything I'd read in a while. &nbsp;And the cover ... Isn't it awesome? &nbsp;<a href="http://www.jilliciousreading.com/2014/08/jillicious-reading-winners-curse.html" target="_blank">Click here to read my original post</a> about this novel that will pull you into a new, compelling world. &nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-g_fU1Swj_68/VKXsZ1wUKZI/AAAAAAAAOAc/bge5FwKpwFY/s1600/The%2BWinner's%2BCurse.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-g_fU1Swj_68/VKXsZ1wUKZI/AAAAAAAAOAc/bge5FwKpwFY/s1600/The%2BWinner's%2BCurse.jpg" height="320" width="213" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">13. &nbsp;<b><i>We Were Liars&nbsp;</i></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by E. Lockhart</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>This is the most talked about book of the year. &nbsp;And for good reason. &nbsp;It is beautifully written and completely surprising. &nbsp;E. Lockhart is such a talented writer, and she stuns and succeeds with this gem. &nbsp;<a href="http://www.jilliciousreading.com/2013/12/jillicious-reading-we-were-liars.html" target="_blank">Click here to read my original post</a> about this incredible novel.&nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>** &nbsp;This is my prediction for the winner of the Printz Award &nbsp;:)&nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-xEYfpPmhHdI/VKXsUQmdibI/AAAAAAAAOAE/IYJ1ieAHFzE/s1600/Liars.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-xEYfpPmhHdI/VKXsUQmdibI/AAAAAAAAOAE/IYJ1ieAHFzE/s1600/Liars.JPG" height="320" width="210" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">14. <b><i>Belzhar</i></b>&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by Meg Wolitzer&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>Jam's boyfriend Reeve has been gone for over a year but she is still mourning and cannot move on. &nbsp;Her parents enroll her in a therapeutic boarding school in rural Vermont - The Wooden Barn - hoping there she will receive the help she needs. &nbsp;When she arrives, Jam finds herself enrolled in a Special Topics in English class, a highly coveted course, that will be studying <u>only</u> the works of Sylvia Plath. &nbsp;When she and her few fellow students in the class begin the journal assignments, they are mysteriously pulled into another world where they can return to their pasts. &nbsp;But, as the pages of her journal begin to fill up, Jam must face some truths and make some important decisions about her reality.&nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i><br /></i></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>A boarding school in New England + an exclusive English course + an inspiring teacher + troubled teens who heal through reading and writing + surprising plot twists + an amazing cover featuring a book, a journal, pens, and Keds! :) = an outstanding book and an instant hit with me! &nbsp;I loved it.&nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i><br /></i></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>** &nbsp;my prediction for a Printz Honor ;)&nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-_GLJKntTM4A/VKXurWE25jI/AAAAAAAAOBQ/UgwDuFMUQ3s/s1600/Belzhar.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-_GLJKntTM4A/VKXurWE25jI/AAAAAAAAOBQ/UgwDuFMUQ3s/s1600/Belzhar.jpg" height="320" width="211" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">And one more ...&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><b><i>I Kill the Mockingbird</i></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by Paul Acampora</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>Three 8th graders are excited about their summer reading list, because they love to read. &nbsp;But, since everyone doesn't, they decide to launch a campaign to increase interest around </i>To Kill a Mockingbird<i>, the beloved novel of their former teacher. &nbsp;This involves hiding the book on bookstore and library shelves to increase demand. &nbsp;Their efforts start to take off and do get people reading and talking about the classic novel. &nbsp;But things quickly start to spin out of control.&nbsp;</i></span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">To Kill a Mockingbird<i> is, not surprisingly, one of my favorite novels, so I was intrigued with the premise of this book right off. &nbsp;Then add a beloved teacher, kids who love to read, and a campaign to get others to read .... sold! &nbsp;And that's not all! &nbsp;There's snappy dialogue, oodles of talk about books and reading (<u>so</u> many great quotes!), clever humor, and important lessons learned. &nbsp;This book is a must-read for book lovers and middle school teachers.&nbsp;</i></span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"></span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-style: italic; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uKmr9SuWa6A/VKclDj-C2RI/AAAAAAAAOCU/zcCh4VOOY7I/s1600/i%2Bkill%2Bthe%2Bmockingbird.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uKmr9SuWa6A/VKclDj-C2RI/AAAAAAAAOCU/zcCh4VOOY7I/s1600/i%2Bkill%2Bthe%2Bmockingbird.jpg" height="320" width="213" /></a></span></div><div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-style: italic; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span></div><div class="separator" style="clear: both; font-style: italic; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span></div><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">2014 was filled with many, many great books. &nbsp;I could easily have listed 14 plus one more! What were YOUR favorites? &nbsp;&nbsp;</span></div><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span></div><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Here's to hoping for more time to read and blog in 2015! &nbsp;Cheers! &nbsp;</span></div>Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com1tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-61847852320646995792014-11-16T15:54:00.001-06:002015-05-05T21:02:26.326-05:00Jillicious Reading: The Paper Cowboy<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-x8MuAZ3zMqo/VF-0KAlLX8I/AAAAAAAAN90/Uf6RPrG6bAc/s1600/Paper%2BCowboy%2B2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-x8MuAZ3zMqo/VF-0KAlLX8I/AAAAAAAAN90/Uf6RPrG6bAc/s1600/Paper%2BCowboy%2B2.jpg" height="400" width="253" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif; font-size: x-large;"><b><i>The Paper Cowboy&nbsp;</i></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by Kristin Levine</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><b>Summary</b>: Tommy is a good looking kid who is liked and followed by the kids at his school. &nbsp;But what they don't know is that he is hiding many secrets. &nbsp;At home, his mother is prone to severe mood swings and Tommy has to help a great deal with his little sisters. When his older sister is severely burned in an accident, things go from bad to worse. &nbsp;As Mary Lou, his only ally in the house, heals in the hospital,Tommy must take over Mary Lou's early morning paper route and try to hold things together at home as his mother becomes more and more violent. Tommy lashes out, becoming a cruel bully at school, stealing from a neighborhood store, and even framing the store owner.&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Tommy dreams of being a cowboy, like the great Gary Cooper in the movie <i>High Noon</i>. &nbsp;But instead, he is acting like one of the bad guys. &nbsp;Is it too late for Tommy to make things right? &nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><b>Thoughts</b>: &nbsp;<i>The Paper Cowboy</i> is a powerful, authentic story of a young boy's struggle to deal with a troubled home life and to figure out who he is in the process. &nbsp;Levine adeptly pulls the reader into the fragile setting where everything depends on Tommy's mother's mood and his overwhelmed father has no idea how to handle the situation. &nbsp;Levine develops a complex character in Tommy - he bravely withstands his mother's abuse, tenderly protects his little sisters, and worries about the healing of his older sister; then the next day, he harshly treats kids at school, steals, and lies. &nbsp;But, his inner struggle with his behaviors and the way he grows with each chapter provides hope and has the reader cheering for Tommy to do the right things.&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span> <span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">The historical backdrop of McCarthyism adds depth and interest to the novel. &nbsp;Levine's excellent connections between the boys' bullying on the schoolyard to the adult targeting of alleged Communists allow for much thought and discussion. The theme of bullying is contrasted perfectly with the caring friendships that develop in the community once Tommy takes the time to truly get to know the people in his school and in his neighborhood. &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>The Paper Cowboy</i> is a thoughtful novel about acceptance, compassion, and overcoming life's struggles. Inspired by the author's father's childhood, the book ends with interesting notes and photographs. &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Read <i>The Paper Cowboy</i> if you ... &nbsp;</span><br /><ul><li><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">enjoyed Kristin Levine's previous novels</span></li><li><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">like engaging historical fiction that is well-researched and immediately transports you to a different place in time</span></li><li><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">have ever been a bully or the victim of a bully</span></li><li><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">are inspired by stories of characters overcoming difficult circumstances</span></li><li><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">enjoy books where the characters greatly develop and grow&nbsp;</span></li><li><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">ever wanted to be a cowboy, a hero, or just one of the good guys&nbsp;</span></li></ul><div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Visit <a href="http://kristinlevine.com/frontpage.html" target="_blank">Kristin Levine's website</a> for more information about <i>The Paper Cowboy</i> and Ms. Levine's writing. &nbsp;</span></div><div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span></div><div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><u>NOTE:</u> &nbsp;Last year several of our 7th grade classes read Ms. Levine's <i>The Lions of Little Rock </i>as a class novel. &nbsp;At the completion of the novel study, we Skyped with the author. &nbsp;What a great experience! &nbsp; She is a fun, inspiring lady. &nbsp;</span></div>Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com2tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-72340049547531783922014-10-25T13:07:00.002-05:002014-10-25T13:07:48.383-05:00Jillicious Reading: Memoirs<span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">These talented authors use unique formats to tell their unforgettable life stories. &nbsp;Don't miss these two outstanding additions to the memoir genre. &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-3oC9yAQXT5Q/VEMQUnJr8VI/AAAAAAAAN8Q/bTTwjYHESJo/s1600/bROWN%2BGIRL.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-3oC9yAQXT5Q/VEMQUnJr8VI/AAAAAAAAN8Q/bTTwjYHESJo/s1600/bROWN%2BGIRL.jpg" height="320" width="211" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif; font-size: large;"><b><i>Brown Girl Dreaming</i>&nbsp;</b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by Jacqueline Woodson</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">In this lyrical novel-in-verse, Newbery Honor/Coretta Scott King/Edwards Award winning author Woodson tells her story of growing up in the 1960s and 70s in two completely different places - Greenville, South Carolina and Brooklyn, New York. &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Most of Woodson's early years were spent with her mother's parents in South Carolina. &nbsp;There, Jackie saw firsthand the prejudices and racial injustices that still dominated the South. But she also experienced a stable, loving home with her grandparents full of home cooking, starched dresses, and weekly visits to church. &nbsp;When she moved to Brooklyn with her siblings and her single mother, she entered a different world. &nbsp;The big city of New York was concrete and cold without gardens and nights on the front porch. &nbsp;But, there Jackie also found more diversity, less prejudice, and dear new friends.</span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">In addition to expressing her search for her place in two different worlds, Woodson's soulful poems also explore the struggles of growing up in a single parent home and living in the shadow of a brilliant older sister. &nbsp;While her sister seemed to excel at everything, Jackie wrestled with learning to read. &nbsp;In spite of this initial difficulty, she developed a love for words and stories. &nbsp;When she received her first composition notebook, Jackie discovered that "words [were her] brilliance" and dreamed of one day becoming a writer. &nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /> <span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>Brown Girl Dreaming</i> is an&nbsp;eloquent memoir that beautifully explores a young girl's search for home and for her own unique voice. &nbsp;Fans of Woodson's writing will love getting to know the observant, spunky young Jackie and learning what sparked her writing journey. Those new to her work will want to read everything else she's written. &nbsp;And everyone will want to reflect on their own memories and tell their own story ... most likely in a crisp, new composition book!&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Watch this video to hear author Jacqueline Woodson talk about writing <i>Brown Girl Dreaming</i>:&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><object width="320" height="266" class="BLOGGER-youtube-video" classid="clsid:D27CDB6E-AE6D-11cf-96B8-444553540000" codebase="http://download.macromedia.com/pub/shockwave/cabs/flash/swflash.cab#version=6,0,40,0" data-thumbnail-src="https://ytimg.googleusercontent.com/vi/-2YJPGea94E/0.jpg"><param name="movie" value="https://youtube.googleapis.com/v/-2YJPGea94E&source=uds" /><param name="bgcolor" value="#FFFFFF" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><embed width="320" height="266" src="https://youtube.googleapis.com/v/-2YJPGea94E&source=uds" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowfullscreen="true"></embed></object></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xecXKLkh9Og/VEMRIgarM1I/AAAAAAAAN8Y/RTXlf3Nsips/s1600/El%2BDeafo.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xecXKLkh9Og/VEMRIgarM1I/AAAAAAAAN8Y/RTXlf3Nsips/s1600/El%2BDeafo.jpg" height="320" width="212" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif; font-size: large;"><b><i>El Deafo</i></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">by Cece Bell</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">When Cece Bell was four years old, she contracted meningitis which resulted in a severe hearing loss. &nbsp;This began a struggle with hearing aides, feelings of isolation, and a search for a friend who would treat her as an equal. In this creative graphic novel, Bell tells her touching, relatable story.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">As a&nbsp;kindergartner, Cece was able to attend a class with other deaf students. &nbsp;But then her family moved and her new school didn't offer separate classes. &nbsp;It's hard enough that she has to go to a new school and try to make new friends, but she also worries about her hearing aide. The Phonic Ear connects to a microphone worn by her teacher which makes hearing easier, but it is also bulky and makes Cece feel so different from the other students. &nbsp;She soon discovers, however, that her teacher would forget about the microphone so Cece could hear her when she was talking in the teacher's lounge or even in the bathroom. &nbsp;:) &nbsp;These "special powers" and an After School Special led her to imagine an alter ego El Deafo who helps her through difficult days. Over the next few years with the help of her loving, supportive family, friends who appreciate her for who she is, and El Deafo who gives her courage, Cece begins to grow in confidence and acceptance of her disability. &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-ggSTW-hZMOs/VEvhh-jTJEI/AAAAAAAAN8o/119nyKzmZjc/s1600/ElDeafo_TXT_page3.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-ggSTW-hZMOs/VEvhh-jTJEI/AAAAAAAAN8o/119nyKzmZjc/s1600/ElDeafo_TXT_page3.jpg" height="300" width="400" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><i>El Deafo</i> is a true autobiographical achievement. &nbsp;The graphic format is perfect; &nbsp;the depiction of the characters as rabbits puts an immediate focus on ears (genius!), and the dialogue bubbles allow the reader to experience what Cece is hearing (</span><span style="background-color: white;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">"eh sounz lah yur unnah wawah!"). &nbsp;The book explores the struggles unique to one with hearing loss, but also explores universal experiences of wanting to fit in, searching for true friends, first crushes, and self-discovery. &nbsp;All are handled with honesty and humor that make for an unforgettable memoir that soars right into your heart. &nbsp;The book ends with a thoughtful author's note telling more about Cece Bell's later experiences and how she has now come to see her disability as a gift, noting that "Our differences are our superpowers." &nbsp;<i>El Deafo </i>will make you want to grab your red cape and celebrate what makes you special! &nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span><br /><span style="background-color: white;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span></span><span style="background-color: white;"><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">Watch this video of author Cece Bell talking about The Phonic Ear and <i>El Deafo</i>:</span></span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><object width="320" height="266" class="BLOGGER-youtube-video" classid="clsid:D27CDB6E-AE6D-11cf-96B8-444553540000" codebase="http://download.macromedia.com/pub/shockwave/cabs/flash/swflash.cab#version=6,0,40,0" data-thumbnail-src="https://ytimg.googleusercontent.com/vi/Cnj5STG0SZo/0.jpg"><param name="movie" value="https://youtube.googleapis.com/v/Cnj5STG0SZo&source=uds" /><param name="bgcolor" value="#FFFFFF" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><embed width="320" height="266" src="https://youtube.googleapis.com/v/Cnj5STG0SZo&source=uds" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowfullscreen="true"></embed></object></div><br /><br /> <span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><b>Fun fact: &nbsp;</b>Author/Illustrator Cece Bell is married to Tom Angleberger who created the amazing &amp; hilarious <i>Origami Yoda </i>series and other terrific books (<i>Crankee Doodle</i> is another one of my favs which was illustrated by CeCe). &nbsp;Holy smokes, Batman. &nbsp;That is one power couple! &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"></div><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-sLcOv3uEUhk/VEvh5GjOB7I/AAAAAAAAN84/02KcWZ88oVA/s1600/Tom%2B%26%2BCece.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-sLcOv3uEUhk/VEvh5GjOB7I/AAAAAAAAN84/02KcWZ88oVA/s1600/Tom%2B%26%2BCece.jpg" height="240" width="320" /></a></div><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span>Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-90938640058992139002014-08-24T21:00:00.002-05:002014-08-24T21:00:08.067-05:00Jillicious Reading: All the Bright Places<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-t8Cz7ecRHSw/U-E9efs7wQI/AAAAAAAAN44/ksUdOLhyrxc/s1600/Bright+Places.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-t8Cz7ecRHSw/U-E9efs7wQI/AAAAAAAAN44/ksUdOLhyrxc/s1600/Bright+Places.jpg" height="320" width="210" /></a></div><span style="font-size: x-large;"><b><i><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">All the Bright Places</span></i></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Jennifer Niven</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Summary</b>: Theodore Finch. He is a tortured soul, completely obsessed with death.&nbsp; Everyday he thinks of ways he might die, but also desperately seeks something -&nbsp; anything - that will keep him here.&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Violet Markey. She is struggling to make it through each day without her sister.&nbsp; She is counting down the days until graduation when she can get out of her town and begin to live again, away from the memories and the pain.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">And, then Finch and Violet meet.&nbsp; On the ledge of the bell tower at school. One rescues the other, and a relationship begins that changes everyone's' lives forever.&nbsp;&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Thoughts</b>:&nbsp; <i>All the Bright Places</i> grabs you from page 1 and never lets go. &nbsp;Teens Finch and Violet are both seriously struggling. &nbsp;Finch is an outsider. &nbsp;Getting up, making it through the day, and finding a reason to do it again the next is a constant challenge. &nbsp;Violet's struggle is new. &nbsp;It began when her sister died in a car accident in which Violet was a passenger and survived. &nbsp;Everyone wants her to start moving on, getting back into life. &nbsp;But she just can't do it. &nbsp;Being a sole survivor is incredibly difficult, and Violet is consumed by guilt. &nbsp;When the two meet, both find a kindred spirit that neither expected, but is exactly who both need.&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">This powerful novel and these afflicted characters are unforgettable. &nbsp;Inspired from events from her own high school experience, Jennifer Niven tells a story that is gripping, honest, and completely heart-breaking. &nbsp;It explores these teens' struggle to truly live as well as navigating difficult family relationships and intense first love. &nbsp;It inspires readers to look for the bright places in their lives and to also look for those around them who might be silently suffering. &nbsp;Get your tissues (and your Post-its!) ready. This one will touch your heart forever. &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Read<i> All the Bright Places</i> if you ...&nbsp;</span><br /><ul><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">enjoyed <i>The Fault in Our Stars</i>, <i>Eleanor and Park, </i><i>Thirteen Reasons Why </i>or<i> If I Stay&nbsp;</i></span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">have lost someone close to you</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">sometimes feel lost - or like a "weary traveler" - in this world</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">are a tortured soul or commiserate with those who are</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">you remember (or dream of!) your first true love</span></li></ul><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://www.jenniferniven.com/" target="_blank">Click here&nbsp;</a>to read more about&nbsp;<i>All the Bright Places</i>, Jennifer Niven, and her critically-acclaimed books published for adults.&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif; font-style: italic;"><u>Note:</u>&nbsp;The movie rights of&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;">All the Bright Places<i>&nbsp;</i></span><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif; font-style: italic;">have already been sold, and Elle Fanning has been cast to play Violet! &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vy5JJFuB-eI/U_qWtSPDCoI/AAAAAAAAN6I/SWR5tk731xs/s1600/ELLE-FANNING.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vy5JJFuB-eI/U_qWtSPDCoI/AAAAAAAAN6I/SWR5tk731xs/s1600/ELLE-FANNING.jpg" height="198" width="320" /></a></div><span style="font-family: 'Trebuchet MS', sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;">I created a wall of some of my bright places and was honored that author Jennifer Niven added it to <a href="http://jenniferniven.tumblr.com/post/91165940143/bright-places" target="_blank">her blog</a>! &nbsp;:)&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: Trebuchet MS, sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VRyRIqsECfo/U_qQXNoTsgI/AAAAAAAAN54/MNEqYn_eApw/s1600/Bright%2BPlaces%2Bcollage.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-VRyRIqsECfo/U_qQXNoTsgI/AAAAAAAAN54/MNEqYn_eApw/s1600/Bright%2BPlaces%2Bcollage.jpg" height="300" width="400" /></a></div><br />Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com1tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-6279399344723213002014-08-07T12:33:00.000-05:002014-08-07T12:33:00.045-05:00Jillicious Reading: To All the Boys I've Loved Before<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-6-66nsLbufs/U-FCDztgTBI/AAAAAAAAN5E/yJt_yEcW6gw/s1600/boys+I%27ve+loved.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-6-66nsLbufs/U-FCDztgTBI/AAAAAAAAN5E/yJt_yEcW6gw/s1600/boys+I've+loved.jpg" height="400" width="265" /></a></div><b><i><span style="font-size: x-large;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">To All The Boys I've Loved Before</span></span></i></b><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Jenny Han</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Summary</b>:&nbsp; Lara Jean has never really dated.&nbsp; But, she has loved several boys who, unknowingly, have broken her heart.&nbsp; She writes to each, pouring out her soul in letters that she never mails; all notes are kept safely in a hatbox under her bed.&nbsp; Until one day the secret letters are mysteriously mailed.&nbsp; Suddenly, eyes that were never meant to see the letters are exactly the ones who receive them. Overnight Lara Jean's very <i>private</i> love life becomes very <i>public, </i>and she is forced to deal with the mess.&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Thoughts</b>:&nbsp; This is a delicious novel, and I just gobbled it up.&nbsp; It is a romance, but it also tackles important themes of family relationships, loss, and identity with the perfect combination of depth and humor.&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Lara Jean is the middle daughter of three who lost their mother at a young age.&nbsp; The oldest, Margot, is going away to college and the family is dealing with this change.&nbsp; Skilled author Jenny Han explores the complicated relationships of the sisters - their strong bond as they care for each other and their father, but also the added pressures they put on one another in the absence of their mother.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The debacle of the mailed letters is a creative premise.&nbsp; It brings different characters into Lara Jean's life, forces her to face her feelings, and allows her to begin to realize who she really is.&nbsp; Han works it all adeptly, not bringing in too many past loves, and perfectly pacing the chaos with character development and self-discovery.&nbsp; The boys are believable, intriguing characters, full of personality and surprises. The youngest sister, Kitty, brings additional humor and heart to the story.&nbsp; The result is a delightful novel that explores what happens when one is faced with the truth and new possibilities.&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Read <i>To All the Boys I've Loved Before </i>if you ...&nbsp;</span><br /><ul><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">enjoyed Jenny Han's previous writing</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">like books by Stephanie Perkins or Lindsey Leavitt</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">have ever had a secret crush</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">have a sister&nbsp;</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">have a complicated family relationship&nbsp;</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">wonder what would happen if your private thoughts were made public! Gasp!</span></li></ul><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://www.dearjennyhan.com/" target="_blank">Click here</a> to read more about the hilarious Jenny Han, <i>To All the Boys I've Loved Before</i>, and her other novels.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">SPOILER ALERT:&nbsp; Ms. Han has already announced that there will be a sequel,<i> P.S. I Still Love You.</i> (Thank goodness!!) &nbsp; I can hardly wait, and, judging from <a href="http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20698530-p-s-i-still-love-you" target="_blank">the Good Reads page</a>, I am not the only one.&nbsp; Many other fans are feeling equally tortured having to wait until 2015 for the story to continue!&nbsp; But don't visit the page until you've finished the first novel.&nbsp; :)&nbsp; </span><br /><br />Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-75638670989837537372014-08-06T12:19:00.005-05:002014-08-06T12:19:45.971-05:00Jillicious Reading: The Winner's Curse<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-XE7D8kAn4EM/U-ALVMT0UPI/AAAAAAAAN4Q/1clbuJINI_c/s1600/The+Winner%27s+Curse.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-XE7D8kAn4EM/U-ALVMT0UPI/AAAAAAAAN4Q/1clbuJINI_c/s1600/The+Winner's+Curse.jpg" height="400" width="266" /></a></div><b><span style="font-size: x-large;"><i><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The Winner's Curse</span></i></span></b><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Marie Rutkoski</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Summary</b>: Kestrel is the daughter of the general, part of the aristocracy.&nbsp; She is used to winning and to getting what she wants.&nbsp; On a whim, she purchases a slave, Arin, in an auction.&nbsp; It is not long before he starts to change the way Kestrel thinks, the way she sees the world, the way she feels about everything.&nbsp; But Arin is not what he seems. &nbsp;&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Thoughts</b>: <i>The Winner's Curse</i> is a completely enthralling novel. It pulled me in from the very beginning because of its originality.... a world of indulgent aristocrats, a conquered people-turned-slaves, and a society that values military strategy and prowess in combat over the arts.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Kestrel is passionate about music, but it is not seen as a worthy pursuit of the upper class.&nbsp; Her father insists that she join the military or get married, so she looks for ways to exert control in her life.&nbsp; This is quickly lost when her world is turned upside down.&nbsp; The novel is lush and intoxicating, pulling the reader into a world of high society, political intrigue, secrets, forbidden love, and betrayal.&nbsp; Kestrel and Arin are complex, well-developed characters, both full of surprises.&nbsp; I look forward to their continued story in the next two books of the trilogy. &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp; </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Read <i>The Winner's Curse</i> if you ... </span><br /><ul><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">like books that pull you into a completely different, fully imagined new world</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">liked the <i>Incarceron</i> series by Catherine Fisher, the <i>Shadow and Bone</i> series by Leigh Bardugo or <i>For Darkness Shows the Stars</i> by Diana </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Peterfreund</span><br /> </li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">look for atmospheric novels with a unique feel </span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">enjoy stories with unexpected plot twists and turns</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">love stories of star-crossed love!&nbsp; :) </span></li></ul><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://www.thewinnerstrilogy.com/" target="_blank">Click here</a> to read more about <i>The Winner's Trilogy</i> and author Marie Rutkoski.&nbsp;</span><br /><br />Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-25880689099434762212014-07-15T21:47:00.000-05:002014-07-15T21:47:35.289-05:00Jillicious Reading: Beach Reads<span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Beaches, summer, romance ...&nbsp; all things I love and all elements of a good beach read.&nbsp; Here are a few I enjoyed this summer while sunning at the beach .... &nbsp; :)&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/--xs8tvf-3UI/U8Ht1_OoYVI/AAAAAAAAN1o/W7APnY-wm4o/s1600/Nantucket+Blue.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/--xs8tvf-3UI/U8Ht1_OoYVI/AAAAAAAAN1o/W7APnY-wm4o/s1600/Nantucket+Blue.jpg" height="320" width="212" /></a></span></div><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><span style="font-size: large;"><i><b>Nantucket Blue</b></i></span></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Leila Howland</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Summary</b>:&nbsp; Cricket is elated when her best friend Jules asks her to spend the summer on Nantucket with her family.&nbsp; Cricket adores the Claytons and is thrilled about the possibilities of the months ahead ... particularly since her longtime crush Jay Logan will also be summering on the island. But an unexpected tragedy changes everyone's plans. Cricket is still determined to spend her summer on Nantucket; but when she gets there, nothing turns out like she planned. </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Thoughts</b>: I must start by saying that I love Nantucket.&nbsp; The grey shingled houses, the bursting blue hydrangea, the idyllic main street, lobster rolls ... it's like a postcard come to life.&nbsp; I wish I could afford to summer there myself!&nbsp; So, I was already excited about this book just because of the setting. And, <a href="http://leilahowland.tumblr.com/" target="_blank">author Leila Howland</a> does an incredible job recreating this magical place, taking the reader right to the </span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-sQGzt3IFPHY/U8Xf1igkcbI/AAAAAAAAN2w/GyupZ9kYl9s/s1600/Nantucket-Hydrangea-300x300.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-sQGzt3IFPHY/U8Xf1igkcbI/AAAAAAAAN2w/GyupZ9kYl9s/s1600/Nantucket-Hydrangea-300x300.jpg" height="200" width="200" /></a></span></div><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">quaint streets and sandy shores of Nantucket.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">But, I was surprised by the story.&nbsp; It's a summer romance, but has a lot more depth and plot development than I expected.&nbsp; I fell in love with the interesting cast of characters including Cricket, her family, and the many people she meets on the island.&nbsp; The novel explores the challenges of friendship, family relationships, loss, and self-discovery in addition to navigating first love. I really enjoyed this book and immediately treated myself to the juicy sequel, <i>Nantucket Red</i>! &nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I recommend the book duo to anyone looking for good beach reads, hoping to be transported to a picturesque summer town, or seeking a compelling story about figuring out who you are and who you really belong with in the world. &nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Py8qsFhn1Yk/U8VtUMOAgEI/AAAAAAAAN2E/Ua5O-FLrSo8/s1600/Nantucket-Red-Cover-.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Py8qsFhn1Yk/U8VtUMOAgEI/AAAAAAAAN2E/Ua5O-FLrSo8/s1600/Nantucket-Red-Cover-.jpg" height="320" width="209" /></a></span></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-cowwlHyvZLE/U8VuOw7R-2I/AAAAAAAAN2Y/ROWPTlftqs4/s1600/Broken-Hearts_1.3.14-600x900.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-cowwlHyvZLE/U8VuOw7R-2I/AAAAAAAAN2Y/ROWPTlftqs4/s1600/Broken-Hearts_1.3.14-600x900.jpg" height="320" width="213" /></a></div><br /><b><span style="font-size: large;"><i><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Broken Hearts, Fences, and Other Things to Mend</span></i></span></b><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Katie Finn</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Summary</b>: Gemma is looking forward to the summer ahead and having time to spend with her perfect boyfriend, Teddy.&nbsp; But when Teddy shocks her with a sudden breakup, she is devastated. Instead of traveling across the world with him, she ends up in the Hamptons with her father. The Hamptons is an amazing destination, to be sure, but it's also the place where Gemma must face her past and a friend she betrayed years ago. She wants to make things right; but a case of mistaken identity, an unforgettable, cute boy on the train, and the effort of keeping up a charade creates one complicated summer. </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Thoughts</b>: As soon as I heard <a href="http://www.katiefinn.com/" target="_blank">Katie Finn</a> is another pen name for author <a href="http://www.morganmatson.com/" target="_blank">Morgan Matson</a>, I was totally in.&nbsp; I loved Matson's <i>Second Chance Summer</i> and was eager to try another novel <table cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="float: right; margin-left: 1em; text-align: right;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-sU_i29utPks/U8XkUU-oCYI/AAAAAAAAN3M/hTPAgr1KE00/s1600/Hamptons-Village-and-Town-Shops.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-sU_i29utPks/U8XkUU-oCYI/AAAAAAAAN3M/hTPAgr1KE00/s1600/Hamptons-Village-and-Town-Shops.jpg" height="209" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size: xx-small;"><i>Photo: Long Island CVB</i></span></td></tr></tbody></table>by her.&nbsp; I also liked that this story was set in the Hamptons; it sounded like the perfect book for my beach bag!&nbsp; </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">After I started, though, I wasn't sure about the mistaken identity storyline.&nbsp; I don't always like excessive hijinks.&nbsp; ;)&nbsp; But, I did like the characters and felt the story had heart and promise.&nbsp; Gemma is a funny, engaging character.&nbsp; Nothing goes her way, and although her case is extreme, I think we can all relate to those times when things seem to be falling apart around us.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I am really glad I stuck with the novel.&nbsp; It's humorous, takes an interesting turn, and leaves the reader eager for the next book in the series, <i>Revenge, Ice Cream, and Other Things Best Served Cold</i> (which comes out next spring).&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;<i>&nbsp;</i></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The author's <i>Second Chance Summer</i> is also a summer story, but it's a heavier drama dealing with intense loss and grief as well as finding love.&nbsp; Although lighter, <i>Broken Hearts, Fences, and Others Things to Mend</i> does explore important themes of friendship, trust, betrayal, and family relationships.&nbsp; I would recommend it to someone looking for a fun summer read, someone who can relate to having made mistakes and living with regrets, or someone looking for a book with humor and heart.&nbsp; </span>Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-45434029349083167462014-07-07T11:14:00.001-05:002014-07-07T11:14:25.668-05:00Jillicious Desserts: Recent Adult Reads<span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">It's summer!&nbsp; Time to sleep in, sit in the sun, catch up on home projects, prepare for next year, and read, read, read!&nbsp; The summer is also the time I allow myself to indulge in a few adult books.&nbsp; Here some recent reads: </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-dNzF_2LO3w0/U6Y9P3cQQ-I/AAAAAAAANzs/x2FJzbgNKpg/s1600/Pink+Suit.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-dNzF_2LO3w0/U6Y9P3cQQ-I/AAAAAAAANzs/x2FJzbgNKpg/s1600/Pink+Suit.jpg" height="200" width="128" /></a></span></div><span style="font-size: large;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i><b>The Pink Suit</b></i></span></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Nicole Mary Kelby&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>The Pink Suit</i>&nbsp; is based on the story behind the iconic pink suit Jacqueline Kennedy wore that fateful day in Dallas in 1963.&nbsp; This unforgettable ensemble and many others from "The Wife's" wardrobe came from Chez Ninon, an exclusive New York&nbsp; boutique which specialized in creating French-inspired designs for American royalty.&nbsp; The book incorporates factual information into a fictionalized tale about all those involved in the creation of the suit - from the President who ordered the suit for the First Lady to Coco Chanel who designed it to the eclectic ladies who ran Chez Ninon to Kate, the talented seamstress who labored over every stitch and pleat to craft the perfect pieces.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-ScvhKknQWBk/U6uA3P3AlbI/AAAAAAAAN0k/s8tuNkMtA8E/s1600/the-pink-suit+JFK+&amp;+Jackie.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-ScvhKknQWBk/U6uA3P3AlbI/AAAAAAAAN0k/s8tuNkMtA8E/s1600/the-pink-suit+JFK+&amp;+Jackie.jpg" height="200" width="165" /></a><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">This is a fascinating tale of fashion, politics, New York City, </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">and love.&nbsp; It focuses mostly on the seamstress Kate, which I didn't expect, but really enjoyed.&nbsp; The novel transports the reader into 1960s NYC as experienced by an Irish immigrant.&nbsp; Kate lives in an Irish neighborhood and has captured the attention of Patrick the local butcher.&nbsp; But, her world is quite different than his as she selects fabrics, perfects stitches, and imagines but never attends the events for which her designs are created.<i>&nbsp; The Pink Suit</i> is a unique, captivating novel that takes readers behind-the-scenes of a fashion boutique and of an unforgettable moment of history.&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-xvzf298mP00/U6Y9vX0GHgI/AAAAAAAAN0E/FX_YbhZpjO8/s1600/one+and+only.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-xvzf298mP00/U6Y9vX0GHgI/AAAAAAAAN0E/FX_YbhZpjO8/s1600/one+and+only.jpg" height="200" width="131" /></a></span></div><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif; font-size: large;"><i><b>The One and Only</b></i></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Emily Giffin&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>The One and Only</i> is the story of Shea Rigsby, a 33-year-old avid football fan who has spent her whole life in the small town of Walker, Texas supporting and then working for her beloved college football team.&nbsp; The novel opens at the funeral of the wife of the football team's beloved coach and mother of Shea's best friend Lucy.&nbsp; In light of this tragedy, Shea begins to question the choices she has made and must face her deepest desires. &nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I was drawn to this book because of the subject &amp; setting - college football in a small Texas town. It isn't a top pick, but I did like the football and <u>all</u> of the Dallas references (the small town is outside of Dallas), including The Ticket (my favorite radio station), Highland Park HS (the high school in my school district), and Mi Cocina (my favorite Mexican restaurant).&nbsp; :)&nbsp; </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-W1NWJlhvxZ4/U6Y-UbOs1QI/AAAAAAAAN0M/PJCDPGcaSdE/s1600/Me+before+you+2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-W1NWJlhvxZ4/U6Y-UbOs1QI/AAAAAAAAN0M/PJCDPGcaSdE/s1600/Me+before+you+2.jpg" height="200" width="130" /></a></span></div><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif; font-size: large;"><i><b>Me Before You</b></i></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Jojo Moyes&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Louisa is from a working class family and has never thought much beyond her small British town.&nbsp; She lives an ordinary life and enjoys her simple job in a local cafe.&nbsp; But when her boss has to let go, her life is shaken up, and she is suddenly in desperate need of a job.&nbsp; She finds work caring for Will Traynor, a highly successful man who lived his life on the edge until a paralyzing accident confined him to a wheelchair.&nbsp; Will is bitter and depressed.&nbsp; Louisa isn't sure she can make it a day in this new situation, but she needs the money and is out of options.&nbsp; Slowly things start to thaw between her and Will, and he begins to show her a world beyond their town, a world she never expected.&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I adored this book. Louisa is funny, original and endearing.&nbsp; She lives in the shadow of her sister and has settled into the life and family role that she believes she is fit to play.&nbsp; But gradually, she starts to wonder and to dream. &nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>Me Before You</i> is an excellent novel. It breaks your heart and also inspires you to live every moment to the fullest. Read it, and be sure to have a box of tissue nearby. &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-30026234762292510662014-07-03T16:14:00.001-05:002014-07-03T16:14:23.776-05:00Caldecott! <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-8_cHEfpXMvE/U7S-cPAcYRI/AAAAAAAAN00/jk17wD9oGKU/s1600/Caldecott-Medal.png" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-8_cHEfpXMvE/U7S-cPAcYRI/AAAAAAAAN00/jk17wD9oGKU/s1600/Caldecott-Medal.png" height="200" width="200" /></a></div><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">May 2 was the longest day of my life.&nbsp; I knew all of the candidates on the Caldecott ballot would be contacted at some point to learn if they had been elected (or not).&nbsp; I kept the phone with me all day awaiting the call and praying for good news.&nbsp; Friends were texting, some were also awaiting election results, others were just encouraging me as I waited.&nbsp; &nbsp; </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The call finally came that afternoon, and it was Dan Bostrom, the ALSC Marketing Manager.&nbsp; He asked how my day was going and then said, "I have some news that's going to make it even better."&nbsp; I almost jumped out of my skin. I had been elected!&nbsp; I squealed and danced all through the library!&nbsp;&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-OxG3GiN9d4A/U7S_lzmxH0I/AAAAAAAAN1I/drVZ2RO3zOo/s1600/Caldecott+2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-OxG3GiN9d4A/U7S_lzmxH0I/AAAAAAAAN1I/drVZ2RO3zOo/s1600/Caldecott+2.jpg" height="320" width="254" /></a>Serving on the Caldecott Committee has been a dream of mine for many, many years ... ever since I started sharing picture books with students.&nbsp; I love art and words and marvel at the way the two come together so exquisitely in this format.&nbsp; The privilege of serving on this committee is an honor and a responsibility I will not take lightly.&nbsp; It will be hard work, but I look forward to the reading, evaluation, discussions,&nbsp; debates, and challenge of working with a group to select one medal winner.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">This weekend at the ALA Annual Conference I was able to attend a lovely Random House cocktail party celebrating illustrators <b>Chris Appelhans, Marc Brown, Brian Floca, Mary GrandPre</b>, and <b>Kevin Hawkes</b>.&nbsp; Hearing these talented artists talk about their work filled my heart and reaffirmed my love for illustration and the power of the picture book.&nbsp; (This basically happens every time I hear an author or illustrator speak or read a picture book!)&nbsp; My heart swelled knowing that I will play a small part in making picture book history.&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Thank you to all the ALSC members who voted for me and gave me this special opportunity.&nbsp; I can't wait to get started!</span>Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-35273721263013912014-03-23T20:04:00.002-05:002014-03-23T20:04:11.020-05:00Jillicious Reading: Grandmaster <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-J-g7t-PgBVw/Uy26TRNNRxI/AAAAAAAANWA/N1RPpi2BRK4/s1600/grandmaster.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-J-g7t-PgBVw/Uy26TRNNRxI/AAAAAAAANWA/N1RPpi2BRK4/s1600/grandmaster.jpg" height="320" width="213" /></a></div><i><b><span style="font-size: x-large;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Grandmaster</span></span></b></i><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by David Klass</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Summary</b>: Freshman Daniel hasn't really found his place at school.&nbsp; He doesn't seem to fit in anywhere and just tries to fly under the radar.&nbsp; A mediocre player on the team's prestigious chess club, Daniel is surprised to be asked by the two senior co-captains to join them and their fathers at a weekend father-son tournament.&nbsp; To his further amazement, Daniel then learns the truth. His father - a reserved, accountant - was actually a chess prodigy at the age of 16 and earned the ranking of Grandmaster.&nbsp; When his father agrees to return to the game 30 years later and accompany Daniel to the tournament, the six man team is in for a weekend none of them expected. </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Thoughts</b>: <i>Grandmaster</i> is a fast-paced, compelling novel that keeps the reader engaged like a spy thriller or intense sports match.&nbsp; I am not a chess player, and I was completely on the edge of my seat during the tournament scenes.&nbsp; The book includes enough chess to satisfy those who do play, but not too much to overwhelm the novice or non-player.&nbsp; What keeps the story captivating is the characters.&nbsp; They are interesting, flawed and believable.&nbsp; Main character Daniel is a likeable kid, and readers can relate to his desire to fit in at school.&nbsp; His father is also an interesting character as he faces his past demons and reveals his former life to his son.&nbsp; I really enjoyed the development of the relationship between these two as Daniel learns more about his father and starts to reorder his priorities.&nbsp; I also liked the addition of Liu, a spunky girl who competes with her mother.&nbsp; She brings out a different side of Daniel and adds some pluck and humor to the story.&nbsp; If you see <i>Grandmaster</i> and expect it to be a boring book about chess, you would be grandly mistaken.&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Read <i>Grandmaster </i>if you&nbsp; ... </span><br /><ul><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">like chess</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">don't like chess</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">enjoy sports fiction with front-row-feeling scenes that pull you into the action and keep you on the edge of your seat</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">look for young adult literature with interesting teen <u>and</u> adult characters&nbsp; </span></li></ul>Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-33344806400105131082014-03-17T20:58:00.000-05:002014-03-17T20:58:37.760-05:00Jillicious Healthy Bites: True Stories from the Holocaust<span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Stories from the Jewish Holocaust during WW II continue to captivate readers.&nbsp; As difficult as it is to read about the depths of human evil reached during this time, it is also incredibly inspiring to read of those who held onto hope in horrific circumstances and ultimately survived to tell their story.&nbsp; It is also so vitally important to read these narratives and remember how simply and subtly these dreadfully evil initiatives began.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Below are three 2013 releases, two nonfiction and one fiction based on a true story, that tell the hopeful, heroic stories that came from this time of persecution:&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ooaLAnyD3e0/UyUKmXaFJcI/AAAAAAAANUQ/xvJX6NXUTaI/s1600/odette.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ooaLAnyD3e0/UyUKmXaFJcI/AAAAAAAANUQ/xvJX6NXUTaI/s1600/odette.jpg" height="200" width="129" /></a></div><span style="font-size: large;"><i><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Odette's Secrets</span></b></i></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Maryann MacDonald</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>Odette's Secrets</i> tells the story of a young Jewish girl living in Paris during the Nazi occupation.&nbsp; Her father joins the French army, her mother joins the Resistance, and Odette is sent to the French countryside for safety.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Throughout the frightening time, young Odette is both terrified and confused.&nbsp; She fears the soldiers, worries about her father, and runs from those who bully her for her yellow star.&nbsp; She also wonders about her Polish roots, her Jewish faith, and later the Christian values of the foster family that cares for her while she seeks refuge in the country.&nbsp; She gets used to silently observing, keeping secrets, and hiding in plain sight. &nbsp; </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I never thought of what these young people must have endured as they tried to make sense of the terrifying world around them as well as their own identity.&nbsp; And what extremes their parents went to for their protection!&nbsp; This moving novel also shows what the survivors faced when they triumphed over their persecutors, but then tried to return to their homes and to their former lives. </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Author Maryann MacDonald was deeply moved by Odette's story and asked her family permission to share her experience in a book for children.&nbsp; She ultimately chose to tell the story as a first person novel-in-verse instead of a factual biography to allow a more intimate view into the young poet-to-be's thoughts and feelings.&nbsp; The result is a accessible, personal narrative that immediately pulls the reader into Paris in 1942 and provides another perspective from this time. </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>Odette's Secrets </i>is a selection on the <a href="http://www.txla.org/sites/tla/files/groups/TBA/Texas%20Bluebonnet%20Award%20Master%20List%202014.pdf" target="_blank">2014-2015 Texas Bluebonnet List</a>. </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp; </span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-aNwowRC1CPE/UyUKszgvueI/AAAAAAAANUc/MRKnXN8bwUA/s1600/Boy+on+box.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-aNwowRC1CPE/UyUKszgvueI/AAAAAAAANUc/MRKnXN8bwUA/s1600/Boy+on+box.jpg" height="200" width="148" /></a></span></div><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif; font-size: large;"><i><b>The Boy on the Wooden Box&nbsp;</b></i></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Leon Leyson </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Leon Leyson was the youngest survivor on what became the world famous "Schindler's List." This memoir tells how Leyson's life went from a happy childhood to a terrible nightmare at the hand of the Nazis and their occupation of his Polish homeland.&nbsp; Leon's family was forced to move to the Krakow ghetto, but through determination, luck, and ultimately the attention of the man named Oskar Schindler,&nbsp; Leon, his parents and a few of his siblings' avoided placement in the horrific concentration camps.&nbsp; </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Constructed from Leyson's personal notes and speeches, <i>The Boy on the Wooden Box</i> tells of how he survived in Schindler's factory with almost nothing to eat but holding onto hope and believing in Oskar Schindler, who became his lifelong hero.&nbsp; Leyson tale's is honest and reflective, but told without bitterness and hatred.&nbsp; It is a powerful, moving memoir that celebrates the risks taken and the perseverance necessary to survive during this time of persecution. </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;<i>The Boy on the Wooden Box </i>is a title on the <a href="http://www.txla.org/groups/lone-star" target="_blank">2014 Texas Lone Star Reading List.</a> </span><br /><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-DXJ5JAHvrXc/UyUKx7G1TbI/AAAAAAAANUk/sRoRPQIajEM/s1600/nazi+hunters.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-DXJ5JAHvrXc/UyUKx7G1TbI/AAAAAAAANUk/sRoRPQIajEM/s1600/nazi+hunters.jpg" height="200" width="131" /></a></div><span style="font-size: large;"><i><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The Nazi Hunters: How a Team of Spies and Survivors Captured the World's Most Notorious Nazi</span></b></i></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Neal Bascomb</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">After WWII ended, one of the highest ranking Nazi officers, Adolf Eichmann, vanished.&nbsp; Believed to have eradicated over 700,000 Jews from Hungary and to have been responsible for millions of Jewish deaths, Eichmann was a prime war criminal to be brought to justice; but he had not been seen or heard of in years. Until a clue finally surfaces from a blind Argentinean man and his teenage daughter.&nbsp; Then the manhunt begins.&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>The Nazi Hunters</i> tells the riveting true story of how the Eichmann case went from a desire to find the man to promising leads to dead ends to the forming of an elite team of Israeli spies to plan and execute an incredible capture.&nbsp; This team - all of whom had been directly affected somehow by Eichmann's crimes - would have to secretly enter Argentina, capture Eichmann, and smuggle him out of the country and return him safely to Israel so he could be brought to justice on Israeli soil. &nbsp;&nbsp; </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Neal Bascomb has crafted a work of narrative nonfiction that expertly provides historical facts and reads like a spy novel.&nbsp; I was on the edge of my seat reading this book!&nbsp; It is truly fascinating.&nbsp; The author does an outstanding job of introducing the young, powerful Eichmann, later showing what he has become during his years in hiding and his views of his actions, and finally showing what an impact the time with Eichmann has on his captors.&nbsp; Bascomb also effectively weaves in the story of an Auschwitz survivor, Zeev Sapir. The reader meets him early in the book when he has an encounter with Eichmann; later Sapir has a chance to testify against Eichmann.&nbsp; It's quite powerful to see one survivor get to face his tormenter and get to share his story with the world.&nbsp; Photographs and documents are included throughout the book that add intrigue and authenticity to the captivating account.&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">This is a must-read for anyone interested in WWII, Jewish and Holocaust history, narrative nonfiction, and/or page-turning tales of spying and intrigue. &nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp; </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>The Nazi Hunters </i>is a title on the <a href="http://www.txla.org/groups/tayshas" target="_blank">2014 TAYSHAS Reading List</a>.&nbsp; </span>Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com1tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-60085903171819312332014-03-16T15:28:00.000-05:002014-03-16T15:33:22.349-05:00DMA Arts & Letters Live 2014<span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The Dallas Museum of Art offers a literary series called <a href="http://www.dallasmuseumofart.org/programs/arts-letters-live" target="_blank">Arts &amp; Letters Live</a> (including the BooksmART programs "for the young and young at heart") that brings outstanding authors and illustrators to town every year.&nbsp; I love this programming and have been volunteering for the events for several years.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The day the season's lineup is announced is always exciting; I open the email and eagerly devour the list to see who's coming ... I know, total nerd.&nbsp; Each season offers an outstanding offering of children's, young adult, and adult authors.&nbsp; Just a few of the amazing writers I have had the opportunity to hear through this programming include: E.L. Konigsburg, Marcus Zusak, Kathryn Stockett, Daniel Handler, Maira Kalman, Sarah Dessen, Laurie Halse Anderson, Eoin Colfer, and Lois Lowry.&nbsp; This year is no different, offering an excellent array of talent (including S.E. Hinton, author of <i>The Outsiders </i>who will be here on April 24!).&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I've attended two BooksmART programs this year and both were fabulous: </span><br /><br /><span style="font-size: large;"><u><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Oliver Jeffers</span></b></u></span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Khvrq_P7kPk/UyX75WPeffI/AAAAAAAANVE/i0KWwBqu18Q/s1600/Jeffers+1.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><br /></a></div><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-8tpooGXaWNQ/UyX8J_ND8UI/AAAAAAAANVM/z7YzhVnrS8U/s1600/Jeffers.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-8tpooGXaWNQ/UyX8J_ND8UI/AAAAAAAANVM/z7YzhVnrS8U/s1600/Jeffers.jpg" height="240" width="320" /></a><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-wfpjCUXLm1k/UyX6hNjG-PI/AAAAAAAANU4/xrTo6pDnprk/s1600/Crayons+quit.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-wfpjCUXLm1k/UyX6hNjG-PI/AAAAAAAANU4/xrTo6pDnprk/s1600/Crayons+quit.jpg" /></a><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I have longtime been a fan of Jeffers' work.&nbsp; It is whimsical and charming, and I love his distinctive handwriting (always a weakness with me).&nbsp; Mr. Jeffers visited the museum on February 9, and the illustrator himself proved to be just as charming as his books and artwork. First off, he has an Irish accent so the room fell in love with him right off, but he also has a delightful sense of humor, a passion for what he does, and a lovely appreciation for his fans.&nbsp; He did a stellar job of presenting to a crowd that ranged in age from 2 to 82 and kept all completely entertained.&nbsp; And during the book signing, he drew something special in every book and had a word for every person who waited for a signature. </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">One thing I loved that he said is that everyone is an artist when they are young.&nbsp; Some just stop.&nbsp; When young artists came through the line, he would tell them, "Just keep going".&nbsp; I like that. I wish I had kept going.&nbsp; </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Here is a video he showed at the beginning that shows his studio and gives a taste of his fun personality:&nbsp;</span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><object class="BLOGGER-youtube-video" classid="clsid:D27CDB6E-AE6D-11cf-96B8-444553540000" codebase="http://download.macromedia.com/pub/shockwave/cabs/flash/swflash.cab#version=6,0,40,0" data-thumbnail-src="https://ytimg.googleusercontent.com/vi/sbkxcY0sm2s/0.jpg" height="266" width="320"><param name="movie" value="https://youtube.googleapis.com/v/sbkxcY0sm2s&source=uds" /><param name="bgcolor" value="#FFFFFF" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><embed width="320" height="266" src="https://youtube.googleapis.com/v/sbkxcY0sm2s&source=uds" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowfullscreen="true"></embed></object></div><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><u><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><span style="font-size: large;">Tim Federle</span></span></u><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><u><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-EyUiXAEKZWw/UyYB3puPxsI/AAAAAAAANVc/aUUtENeJ9jI/s1600/better-nate-than-ever-cover.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-EyUiXAEKZWw/UyYB3puPxsI/AAAAAAAANVc/aUUtENeJ9jI/s1600/better-nate-than-ever-cover.jpg" height="320" width="211" /></a></u></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Tim Federle is new on the scene but he has definitely made a big splash.&nbsp; He published his first book <i>Better Nate Than Ever</i> in 2013 to stellar reviews and much critical acclaim. This autobiographically inspired debut novel tells the story of Nate, a kid growing up with big dreams in a small town; he knows that life will get better if he can just get to New York City.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">After reading several reviews and tweets about this novel, I read it last year and loved it.&nbsp; It's heartfelt and hilarious.&nbsp; Although I have never felt the draw of the stage, I could definitely relate to Nate's desire to find his place in the world... particularly in the midst of middle school!&nbsp; And writers with comic talent always have me at hello.&nbsp; ;)&nbsp; So, I was thrilled when I saw Tim Federle's name on the season's schedule and was doubly thrilled when Carolyn Bess, Director of Programming and Arts &amp; Letters Live, asked me to introduce him.&nbsp; What an honor!&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Well, what a treat it was when Mr. Federle visited on March 2.&nbsp; He was an absolute riot.&nbsp; I</span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-pd5O0E5dsk4/UyYGXVZbOBI/AAAAAAAANVo/NOouTMx5How/s1600/Tim+Federle.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-pd5O0E5dsk4/UyYGXVZbOBI/AAAAAAAANVo/NOouTMx5How/s1600/Tim+Federle.jpg" height="320" width="320" /></a></div>loved him from the minute I met him, as did the entire room.&nbsp; We were rolling from the moment he began.&nbsp; Unfortunately, Dallas experienced a crazy cold snap that day and icy roads kept many from attending.&nbsp; But, the author took it all in stride and the small crowd that attended <span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">(what he described as, "almost enough for a party bus") </span>enjoyed every moment!&nbsp; It was a side-splitting afternoon celebrating writing, following dreams, and tap dancing that was more than worth bundling up and facing the elements.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">If Tim Federle is ever in your area, I advise you to be first in line to see this talented, hilarious guy!&nbsp; Librarians, he will be at both TLA and ALA annual conferences this year.&nbsp; :) </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i><u>Side note:</u> Tim Federle is the creative genius behind <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Tequila-Mockingbird-Cocktails-Literary-Twist/dp/0762448652" target="_blank">Tequila Mockingbird: Cocktails with a Literary Twist</a> which I have previously mentioned is a favorite gift of mine.&nbsp; He is now at work on Hickory Daiquiri Dock which will likely be my new go-to gift for new parents.&nbsp; ;) &nbsp;</i> </span><br /><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">If you live in the Dallas area, I highly recommend taking advantage of the Arts &amp; Letters Live series.&nbsp; Most of the programs are free, but you do have to reserve tickets ahead of time.&nbsp; <a href="http://www.dallasmuseumofart.org/programs/arts-letters-live/2014-season-glance" target="_blank">Click here for the season at a glance</a>.&nbsp; Hope to see you at an upcoming event! </span>Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-46251818870547270342014-03-13T19:50:00.001-05:002014-03-13T19:50:29.701-05:00ALA Midwinter 2014<br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">2014 has been a whirlwind!&nbsp; It's time to catch up on some posts.&nbsp; Let's start with some recent literary events.&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"></div><table cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="float: right; margin-left: 1em; text-align: right;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-wGUAg63hNXw/UyINeD_E1RI/AAAAAAAANS4/agllGBWlWlk/s1600/Mary+2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-wGUAg63hNXw/UyINeD_E1RI/AAAAAAAANS4/agllGBWlWlk/s1600/Mary+2.jpg" height="200" width="150" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>I was not made for cold weather.</i></span></td></tr></tbody></table><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span><br /> <span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The ALA Midwinter Meeting was held in January in Philadelphia. It was bitterly cold as evidenced in the photo on the right.&nbsp; Travel buddy Mary and I were walking down the street squealing as we were pelted with freezing snow; clearly, no one confused us for native Philadelphians. But, in spite of the bone-numbing temperatures, I had a wonderful weekend in Chilly Philly (my first visit to the city).&nbsp; Here are some highlights:&nbsp; </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b></b></span><br /><br /><ul></ul><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>**Scholastic Author Reception</b>&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Scholastic hosts these fun events where a group of their authors perform a readers' theater of excerpts from each other's upcoming releases.&nbsp; </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The mix of books, genres, styles, and personalities is always a delight, and this gathering was no different.&nbsp; </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The reception featured <b>Julia Donaldson, Jon J. Muth, Natalie Lloyd, Cynthia Lord, Rodman Philbrick, Deborah Wiles</b>, and <b>Lucy Christopher</b>.&nbsp;</span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-d4XSDVFkOXM/UyHb7aXdjjI/AAAAAAAANQs/9SWn49_Ragk/s1600/snicker+of+magic.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-d4XSDVFkOXM/UyHb7aXdjjI/AAAAAAAANQs/9SWn49_Ragk/s1600/snicker+of+magic.jpg" height="200" width="131" /></a></span></div><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://natalielloyd.blogspot.com/" target="_blank">Natalie Lloyd</a> is a debut author, and she completely charmed the room (again! ... she was </span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span></div><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">also featured at the Scholastic event at NCTE and won a legion of fans there as well).&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"> Her debut novel <b><i>A Snicker of Magic </i></b>is an enchanting story celebrating words, family, and new beginnings.&nbsp; I expect we will continue to see great things from this talented lady! <b><i><br /></i></b></span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"></div><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-RJO6cAZd8Mw/UyIBC079V2I/AAAAAAAANSQ/0jlWUaTapCE/s1600/Jon+Muth.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-RJO6cAZd8Mw/UyIBC079V2I/AAAAAAAANSQ/0jlWUaTapCE/s1600/Jon+Muth.jpg" height="150" width="200" /></a></span></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I also particularly loved Muth's unique <i><b>Hi, Koo! </b></i>full of endearing haiku poetry<i><b> </b></i>perfectly illustrated by his gentle artwork. Two more spotlighted books I am really excited about are Cynthia Lord's <i>Half a Chance </i>( I loved her first novel <i>Rules</i>) and Deborah Wiles' <i>Revolution</i>, the second in her Sixties Trilogy.&nbsp; I have been eagerly awaiting this follow-up to <i>Countdown</i>.&nbsp; It will surely be another powerful story of this tumultuous, important time period told in Wiles' heartfelt style.&nbsp; And, isn't the cover excellent??&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-bm0jnlsKrYQ/UyHiE-dQuWI/AAAAAAAANRA/oJXp7dFAi50/s1600/revolution.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-bm0jnlsKrYQ/UyHiE-dQuWI/AAAAAAAANRA/oJXp7dFAi50/s1600/revolution.jpg" height="200" width="132" /></a></div><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"></div><br /><br /><ul></ul><ul></ul><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"></div><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>**Random House Dinner</b>&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Random House hosted a lovely dinner with authors <b>E. Lockhart, Dana Reinhardt</b>, and <b>Jenny Hubbard</b>. It was a delightful evening celebrating excellent writing for young adults. I had read the incredible <i><b>We Were Liars</b></i> and loved hearing the back story to this unforgettable novel as well as learning about the additional upcoming novels featured at the event.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I have since read <b><i>And We Stay</i></b>, a melancholy story of a teen who experiences a great tragedy but finds healing through poetry and the spirit of Emily Dickinson.&nbsp; It was written by the talented and very Southern Jenny Hubbard (<i>Paper Covers Rock</i>) and edited by the equally talented and absolutely fabulous Rebecca Short whom I had the pleasure of chatting with throughout the evening. After reading this moving story, I am now eager to visit the <a href="https://www.emilydickinsonmuseum.org/" target="_blank">Emily Dickinson Museum</a> in Amherst, Massachussets (Emily Dickinson's home and an important setting in the novel) and I also plan to revisit Dickinson's poetry with fresh eyes.&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp; </span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-sL-U6WPbd_A/UyHgNh6vgVI/AAAAAAAANQ4/VZ18iInVxCk/s1600/and+we+stay.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-sL-U6WPbd_A/UyHgNh6vgVI/AAAAAAAANQ4/VZ18iInVxCk/s1600/and+we+stay.jpg" height="200" width="131" /></a></span></div><br /><ul></ul><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>**Exhibition Opening at The Barnes Foundation</b>&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Thanks to the ever-connected Mary, we were able to attend the opening of a special exhibition at <a href="http://www.barnesfoundation.org/" target="_blank">The&nbsp; Barnes Foundation</a>. The Foundation holds an extensive collection of Post-Impressionist and early Modern art amassed by <a href="http://www.barnesfoundation.org/about/history/albert" target="_blank">Dr. Albert C. Barnes</a>. Dr. Barnes was committed to "the advancement of education and the appreciation of the fine arts" ... be still my heart!&nbsp; I was completely awed by what had been Dr. Barnes' personal collection which includes hundreds of pieces by Renoir, Picasso, Rousseau, Matisse, and one of my very favorites, Cezanne.&nbsp; </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The exhibition opening that weekend was <a href="http://www.barnesfoundation.org/exhibitions/shonibare/" target="_blank"><i>Magic Ladders</i> created by artist Yinka Shonibare</a>. Shonibare's work "cites the artistic and intellectual history of Europe. His sculptures - life-sized mannequins clothed in the Dutch wax fabrics associated with Africa - offer a dramatic, playful, irreverent examination of identity, history, and politics. [The] show focuses on education, enlightenment, and opportunity, ideals embraced by Dr. Barnes." (-taken from The Barnes Foundation website)</span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-gZyVf03RGxM/UyIs1LRiPdI/AAAAAAAANTg/2_Ag719VCKg/s1600/magic+ladders.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-gZyVf03RGxM/UyIs1LRiPdI/AAAAAAAANTg/2_Ag719VCKg/s1600/magic+ladders.jpg" height="177" width="320" /></a></span></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The exhibition was fascinating.&nbsp; I loved the fabrics, the mix of patterns, the striking images.&nbsp; The mannequins were bold and arresting and each portrayed a powerful message.&nbsp; My favorites, of course, were the child-sized figures climbing ladders of books (volumes taken from Dr. Barnes' own library) representing the growth that is attainable through knowledge and education.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"></div><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-vOHyeWk0dNE/UyIs9CQYzxI/AAAAAAAANTo/9OQSwxKPMxs/s1600/magic+ladders+2.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-vOHyeWk0dNE/UyIs9CQYzxI/AAAAAAAANTo/9OQSwxKPMxs/s1600/magic+ladders+2.jpg" height="200" width="150" /></a></span></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The exhibition was sponsored by Anthropologie and select stores will have pieces inspired from the art.&nbsp; I hope Dallas is one of these select stores!&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The visit to the Barnes Foundation was an unexpected addition to the trip, and such a treat.&nbsp; I highly recommend a stop here if you are ever in the Philadelphia area. </span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>** ALA Youth Media Award Announcements</b></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The award announcements is always one of the highlights of Midwinter.&nbsp; There is such excitement in the air as early risers line up to enter, last minute predictions are being made, the doors finally open, the crowd scrambles for seats, the selection committees enter the room, and the officers take the stage.&nbsp; When the announcements begin, there are wild cheers as favorites win and gasps or even stunned silence when suprise titles are named; but it is always exciting and a wonderful celebration of the literary excellence created the previous year. &nbsp;</span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-B-REF14oMek/UyIMGeRl2aI/AAAAAAAANSo/VUveAYf4YNk/s1600/YMA.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-B-REF14oMek/UyIMGeRl2aI/AAAAAAAANSo/VUveAYf4YNk/s1600/YMA.jpg" height="240" width="320" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I was so pleased with the outstanding selections and congratulate the authors and illustrators on their awards and the committees on their hard work. A few of my personal favorites that received acknowledgement this year were:&nbsp;</span><br /><ul><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;<i>Flora &amp; Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures</i> by Kate DiCamillo (Newbery Winner)</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>One Came Home </i>by Amy Timberlake (Newbery Honor)</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>Flora and the Flamingo </i>by Molly Idle (Caldecott Honor)</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>Mr. Wuffles!</i> by David Wiesner (Caldecott Honor) </span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>P.S. Be Eleven </i>by Rita Williams-Garcia (Coretta Scott King Author Award)</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>When the Beat Was Born: DJ Kook Herc and the Creation of Hip Hop</i> illustrated by Theodore Taylor III (CSK/John Steptoe winner)</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>Eleanor and Park</i> by Rainbow Rowell (Printz Honor, Odyssey, Honor)</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>Better Nate Than Ever </i>by Tim Federle (Odyssey Honor, Stonewall Honor)</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>Nino Wrestles the World </i>by Yuyi Morales (Pura Belpre Illustrator Award)</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>The Lightning Dreamer: Cuba's Greatest Abolitionist</i> by Margarita Engle (Pura Belpre Author Award)</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>The Nazi Hunters: How a Team of Spies and Survivors Captured the World's Most Notorious Nazi</i> by Neal Bascomb (YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults)</span></li></ul><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">There are always some books you would like to have seen come away with an award.&nbsp; For me, I really would like for <b><i>Mr. Tiger Goes Wild </i></b>by Peter Brown to have received Caldecott acknowledgement.&nbsp; I felt the color, contrasts, pacing, and humor in this book were all brilliant. I also would love to have seen <i><b>Winger </b></i>by Andrew Smith and <b><i>All the Truth That's in Me</i></b> by Julie Berry earn Printz recognition.&nbsp; Both of these unforgettable teen voices and their powerful stories were unique contributions to young adult literature that I would like to have seen celebrated.&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">But, so it goes. Comparing our favorites to the winners is all part of the fun!&nbsp; I appreciate the work of the committees, trust the process, and look forward to next year's announcements.&nbsp; I also hope to someday serve on one of the committees and get to be a part of, what I am sure, is an intense, arduous, but incredibly rewarding experience. &nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">**Friends, Food &amp; Fun</span></b><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Of course, the best part of these conferences is enjoying good food in fun cities with good friends!&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"> </span></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-WBckvVuH-ZY/UyINMQJ2FpI/AAAAAAAANSw/9neG4liFnJs/s1600/KK+&amp;+Mary.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-WBckvVuH-ZY/UyINMQJ2FpI/AAAAAAAANSw/9neG4liFnJs/s1600/KK+&amp;+Mary.jpg" height="240" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><i><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">A late dinner with&nbsp; Karen &amp; Mary! </span></i></td><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><br /></td><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><br /></td><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><br /></td><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><br /></td></tr></tbody></table><br />Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com2tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-23221413248035749922014-01-02T07:30:00.000-06:002014-01-02T07:30:00.960-06:00Jillicious Side Dish: CookbooksI love to look at cookbooks.&nbsp; I don't really like to cook, but I do love to eat and enjoy pouring over the photographs and creative culinary ideas in cookbooks.&nbsp; A friend with the same feelings once told me that we are "intellectual cooks." :)&nbsp; I liked the euphemistic term and immediately claimed it. <br /><br />Luckily my husband likes to do more than just look at recipes, and he is a tremendous cook.&nbsp; He is also more adventurous than I am.&nbsp; I basically have the taste buds of a 6-yr-old (my favorite foods are pizza and mac &amp; cheese!), but he has broadened my horizons and my palate.&nbsp; It is a treat to come home to his delicious dinners after a long day at the library.&nbsp; And, I am more than happy to do all the clean up! <br /><br />Here is one of our cookbook shelves with some of my favorites:&nbsp; <br /><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-i30jowPfdE0/UsSVA4acYBI/AAAAAAAACyU/DMkcE5e6q2M/s1600/cookbooks+1.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-i30jowPfdE0/UsSVA4acYBI/AAAAAAAACyU/DMkcE5e6q2M/s1600/cookbooks+1.jpg" height="226" width="400" /></a></div><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;">&nbsp;<a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-OmbIF8U-etU/UsSqFz-joiI/AAAAAAAACy0/2tLTRL1_yVo/s1600/Ina.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-OmbIF8U-etU/UsSqFz-joiI/AAAAAAAACy0/2tLTRL1_yVo/s1600/Ina.jpg" height="200" width="151" /></a></div><br />I love Ina Garten, the Barefoot Contessa.&nbsp; I also wouldn't mind living&nbsp; in her beautiful house in the Hamptons!&nbsp; Barefoot Contessa recipes are elegant but not too complicated.&nbsp; Her turkey sausage lasagna is my favorite lasagna in the world.&nbsp; Her ultimate brownies are purely sinful, and her coconut cupcakes are divine.&nbsp;<br /><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;">&nbsp;<a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-47_cJOQX1wc/UsSp7nowI4I/AAAAAAAACyo/f6Xtbz0N1pk/s1600/rebecca+rather.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-47_cJOQX1wc/UsSp7nowI4I/AAAAAAAACyo/f6Xtbz0N1pk/s1600/rebecca+rather.JPG" height="200" width="160" /></a></div>Rebecca Rather used to own the Rather Sweet Bakery in Fredericksburg (one of my favorite Texas towns).&nbsp; Her cookbooks are full of delicious savory dishes as well as delectable sweets.&nbsp; Her tuxedo cake takes some time to make, but it's well-worth the effort; the cake is pure bliss.&nbsp; I hope opening a new eatery in the Hill Country is in Ms. Rather's 2014 plans!<br /><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-FP3UxuZmIYQ/UsSqDFoYOlI/AAAAAAAACyw/y-KJQbyLc3A/s1600/PioneerHolidayCoverSmallb.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-FP3UxuZmIYQ/UsSqDFoYOlI/AAAAAAAACyw/y-KJQbyLc3A/s1600/PioneerHolidayCoverSmallb.jpg" height="200" width="159" /></a></div>Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, creates recipes that are homey, simple, and flavorful.&nbsp; I like the way she shows things step-by-step in photos. This fall I picked up her new book <i>The Pioneer Woman Cooks: A Year of Holidays</i>.&nbsp; My husband tried several of her recipes for Thanksgiving, and they were all delicious.&nbsp; I particularly liked the cornbread sausage dressing. <br /><br /><br />Now, for some new cookbooks I'd like to add to our collection:<br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-8bxXe1TPNcg/UsStDcu9cXI/AAAAAAAACzA/WLPReMHnCdA/s1600/melt.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-8bxXe1TPNcg/UsStDcu9cXI/AAAAAAAACzA/WLPReMHnCdA/s1600/melt.jpg" height="200" width="200" /></a></div><br /><i><b>Melt: The Art of Macaroni and Cheese&nbsp;</b></i><br /><b>by Stephanie Stiavetti &amp; Garrett McCord</b><br />I mentioned that mac &amp; cheese is one of my favorites foods.&nbsp; I probably shouldn't admit this, but I even love it out of the blue Kraft box!&nbsp; So, this looks like a must for our shelf. &nbsp; <br /><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Alit-oee03g/UsStLGm-F8I/AAAAAAAACzI/89MxkMlLE2Y/s1600/smittenkitchen-3.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Alit-oee03g/UsStLGm-F8I/AAAAAAAACzI/89MxkMlLE2Y/s1600/smittenkitchen-3.jpg" height="213" width="320" /></a></div><br /><i><b>The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook</b></i><br /><b>by Deb Perelman</b><br />Deb Perelman is a food blogger at <a href="http://smittenkitchen.com/">smittenkitchen.com</a>.&nbsp; She tackles a variety of food challenges in her tiny little NYC kitchen always looking for the best (and simplest) ways to create the best food.&nbsp; She is a skilled photographer, and her posts are full of lovely, helpful photos. Many have been eagerly anticipating her first cookbook. <br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-HTWtUH1JNAk/UsSv4gMNBaI/AAAAAAAACzU/SUaJBRqBuAg/s1600/jerusalem-640.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-HTWtUH1JNAk/UsSv4gMNBaI/AAAAAAAACzU/SUaJBRqBuAg/s1600/jerusalem-640.jpg" height="319" width="320" /></a></div><br /><i><b>Jerusalem</b></i><br /><b>by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi&nbsp;</b><br />I have heard and read a lot about this cookbook.&nbsp; It would likely be stretch for my babyish taste buds, but I think my husband would love this one.&nbsp; I'll bet he would introduce me to some excellent food I never would have tried on my own.&nbsp;<br /><br />Because of our love of food, this is the cookbook we'll be using for the next 21 days!&nbsp; I hope I can lose some lbs and keep things in better moderation in 2014.<br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-rOyoOVaDBE0/UsSxO-jfJFI/AAAAAAAACzg/5AEPDysLhcQ/s1600/21+day.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-rOyoOVaDBE0/UsSxO-jfJFI/AAAAAAAACzg/5AEPDysLhcQ/s1600/21+day.jpg" height="320" width="224" /></a></div><br />Any favorite cookbooks of your own? Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-67229843467562345172013-12-31T12:50:00.001-06:002013-12-31T12:51:29.824-06:00Favs of 2013<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-iGmX3BKzNH4/Ur-SY8H03_I/AAAAAAAACvs/8xADIDvSlzE/s1600/BEST-2013-.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-iGmX3BKzNH4/Ur-SY8H03_I/AAAAAAAACvs/8xADIDvSlzE/s1600/BEST-2013-.jpg" height="318" width="320" /></a></div><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">SO many great books released in 2013.&nbsp; Here are my favorites of the year:</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><u><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Picture Books</span></b></u><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://www.jilliciousreading.com/2013/08/jillicious-snacks-back-to-school-means.html" target="_blank"><b><i>The Day the Crayons Quit</i></b></a></span><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Drew Daywalt, illustrated by Oliver Jeffers </span></b><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Hilarious collection of letters from the crayons who have had enough!&nbsp; Overworked, ignored, or misunderstood, they quit!&nbsp; This clever story is perfectly drawn with Jeffers' charming artwork and lettering.&nbsp; Innovative and witty, <i>The Day the Crayons Quit</i> is a must for every picture book shelf.&nbsp; &nbsp; </span><br /><br /><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b><i>Exclamation Mark</i></b></span><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Amy Krouse Rosenthal, illustrated by Ted Lichtenheld </span></b><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Exclamation Mark is different and is trying to find his place in the world.&nbsp; Funny and perfectly PUN-ny, this little book has a simple but important message for readers of all ages. Particularly for those who appreciate humor, word play, and a brilliant blend of text and illustration. &nbsp;&nbsp; </span><br /><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pzVqz0ntK9A/UsD3HN1jkeI/AAAAAAAACw8/_D8StBeimQQ/s1600/Mr.-Tiger-Goes-Wild-cover.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pzVqz0ntK9A/UsD3HN1jkeI/AAAAAAAACw8/_D8StBeimQQ/s1600/Mr.-Tiger-Goes-Wild-cover.jpg" height="200" width="197" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b><i>Mr. Tiger Goes Wild</i></b></span><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">written &amp; illustrated by Peter Brown </span></b><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Mr. Tiger doesn't really like his prim, proper world and goes a little ... wild.&nbsp; He learns some things in the wilderness as do his prim friends while he is away.&nbsp; Another riotous romp from Peter Brown, complete with his detailed, whimsical, perfectly hand-crafted illustrations. His use of line and color (<span style="color: orange;">ORANGE!<span style="color: black;">)</span> </span>are pure genius.&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"></div><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"></div><a href="http://www.jilliciousreading.com/2013/03/book-talk-with-teri-lesesne.html" target="_blank"><br /></a><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://www.jilliciousreading.com/2013/03/book-talk-with-teri-lesesne.html" target="_blank"><b><i>Paul Meets Bernadette</i></b></a> </span><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">written &amp; illustrated by Rosy Lamb</span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Paul swims around and around in circles in his fish bowl ... until Bernadette arrives. Bernadette sees things differently and shows Paul a whole new way to view the world.&nbsp; The artwork, created with broad strokes reminiscent of Monet or Matisse, adds to the charm and beauty of this gentle book celebrating the impact one individual can make on the world ... even one as small as a fish bowl.&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-HLeZ4LbvrR0/Ur-SkNxpBsI/AAAAAAAACv4/y43TpkJLpQA/s1600/Flora.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-HLeZ4LbvrR0/Ur-SkNxpBsI/AAAAAAAACv4/y43TpkJLpQA/s1600/Flora.jpg" height="200" width="160" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i><b>Flora and the Flamingo</b></i><b>&nbsp;</b></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>written &amp; illustrated by Molly Idle</b></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">This wordless interactive book is a pure delight.&nbsp; Plump little Flora, in a pink swimsuit and bathing cap, imitates the moves of her friend the flamingo.&nbsp; Although not quite as graceful, her efforts result in pure fun.&nbsp; Young readers will want to flip the pages again and again ... and likely mimic the dance!&nbsp; Created by a former </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">DreamWorks </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">animator, this duo begs to star in an animated short, whether it's on the screen or in the reader's mind. &nbsp;&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><u><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Middle Grade</span></b></u><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i><b>Flora and Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures</b></i><b>&nbsp;</b></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>by Kate DiCamillo, illustrated by K.G. Campbell</b>&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Another Flora! ... and equally as endearing.&nbsp; Flora Belle Buckman, a self-described cynic, steps in to help a squirrel in a tangle with a vacuum cleaner.&nbsp; The squirrel (AKA Ulysses) survives and emerges a superhero with special powers and a penchant for poetry.&nbsp; DiCamillo has woven another quietly brilliant tale with her </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">exquisite word choice, endearing characters, and </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">trademark charm. </span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-fOXubIaS_OU/UsBoN5l8SjI/AAAAAAAACwI/Ywy67tCtiaA/s1600/Counting-by-7s.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-fOXubIaS_OU/UsBoN5l8SjI/AAAAAAAACwI/Ywy67tCtiaA/s1600/Counting-by-7s.jpg" height="320" width="213" /></a></div><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i><b>Counting by 7s</b></i></span><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"> </span></b><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Holly Goldberg Sloan</span></b></span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Willow Chance is a 12-year-old genius.&nbsp; She has an amazing knowledge of nature and medical conditions, but knows very little about getting along with others.&nbsp; When tragedy hits, Willow must learn to exist in a new reality and makes an unexpected impact on those around her.&nbsp; The writing is impeccable, and Willow a true gem.&nbsp; This tragic, but ultimately hopeful tale is one-in-a-million. &nbsp; </span><br /><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://www.jilliciousreading.com/2013/12/jillicious-reading-ps-be-eleven.html" target="_blank"><i><b>P.S. Be Eleven</b></i></a></span><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span></b><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Rita Williams-Garcia</span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Delphine and her sisters are back!&nbsp; Returning home from time spent with her estranged mother, Delphine must reconcile what she has experienced and her newly found independence with her grandmother's old ways, the changes happening in her family (her father is dating!), and the trials of 6th grade. Rita Williams-Garcia has created an excellent sequel to an excellent book. &nbsp; I can't wait for #3!&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-7GHPf6eERe4/UsIkPhCZZBI/AAAAAAAACxc/hi7R1uQr9Ms/s1600/Jedi+Academy.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-7GHPf6eERe4/UsIkPhCZZBI/AAAAAAAACxc/hi7R1uQr9Ms/s1600/Jedi+Academy.jpg" height="200" width="137" /></a></span></div><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i><b>Star Wars: Jedi Academy</b></i></span><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span></b><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Jeffrey Brown</span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">This little book completely surprised and delighted me!&nbsp; Roan dreamed of entering the Pilot Academy, like his father and older brother before him.&nbsp; He doesn't get in, but instead is invited to the mysterious Jedi Academy.&nbsp; Told through journal entries, clippings, report cards, doodles, and letters, <i>Star Wars: Jedi Academy</i> tells the ups and downs of Roan's first year at the Academy.&nbsp; The book is clever and entertaining, but also surprisingly perceptive as it addresses topics such as bullying, making friends, not giving up, and handling new situations. It has huge reader appeal and makes you want to pull out your old collection of Star Wars action figures (yes, I've got 'em.. even the Land Rover!) and maybe even start your own journal.&nbsp; Read it you must, love it you will. ; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><br /><u><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Young Adult</span></b></u><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://www.jilliciousreading.com/2013/05/jillicious-reading-one-came-home.html" target="_blank"><i><b>One Came Home </b></i></a></span><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span></b><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Amy Timberlake</span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">It's 1871 in Wisconsin, and Georgie's sister has disappeared.&nbsp; The town assumes the worst, but </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Georgie</span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">, armed with only her sharpshooting skills and pure determination,</span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"> sets out </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">insistent on finding her.&nbsp; Part adventure, part mystery and wholly original, <i>One Came Home</i> is a <i>True Grit </i>for tweens &amp; teens (and 40-somethings!), immediately transporting readers to a different time and into the heart of a plucky unforgettable heroine.&nbsp; Funny, smart, and insightful.&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><br /><a href="http://www.jilliciousreading.com/2013/01/the-fire-horse-girl-by-kay-honeyman.html?spref=tw" target="_blank"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b><i>The Fire Horse Girl</i></b></span></a><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span></b><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Kay Honeyman</span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Jade Moon is born under the worst sign of the Zodiac for Chinese girls ensuring that she is willful and stubborn, traits not desirable in young girls.&nbsp; While her grandfather worries about marrying her off, she dreams of a different future.&nbsp; Her chance comes when a distant adopted cousin arrives with an opportunity to go to America.&nbsp; But, admittance to this new country is not easy for the Chinese in 1923 and detainment at Angel Island is almost unbearable.&nbsp; Jade Moon's strength and will turn out to be just what she needs to survive. This well-researched novel gives readers an authentic view into Chinese immigration as well as a strong, feisty teen to root for as she navigates her new world.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-COGMDLQ8Yh0/UsIhzylLFkI/AAAAAAAACxM/2wOhAKidoEM/s1600/going+vintage.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-COGMDLQ8Yh0/UsIhzylLFkI/AAAAAAAACxM/2wOhAKidoEM/s1600/going+vintage.jpg" height="200" width="132" /></a></div><br /><a href="http://www.jilliciousreading.com/2013/06/jillicious-reading-going-vintage.html" target="_blank"><b><i><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Going Vintage</span></i></b></a><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span></b><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Lindsey Leavitt</span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I am a sucker for romance, quirky, loveable characters, and books that make me laugh... Lindsey Leavitt creates all three superbly!&nbsp; When Mallory's boyfriend "cheats" on her with an online girlfriend, she swears off all technology.&nbsp; Armed with a to-do list her grandmother made as a teen in 1962, Mallory decides to "go vintage," to return to a simpler time, and to try to accomplish her grandmother's goals.&nbsp; The challenge proves to be a little more than she expected (How does she run for pep club secretary when her school doesn't even have a pep club??).&nbsp; Through it all, Mallory makes many new discoveries about herself, her family, and those around her. &nbsp;Reviewers have claimed Linsdsey Leavitt's books have "humor and heart." I wholeheartedly agree and can't wait for the next one!&nbsp; &nbsp; </span><br /><br /><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i><b>Winger</b></i></span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i><b></b></i></span></div><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Andrew Smith</span></b><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Ryan Dean West is the youngest in his junior class at an elite boarding school on the West Coast. He is a frequent target for bullies, but his wits, determination, and prowess on the rugby field help him rise above.&nbsp; This year he is set on making Annie, his best friend and love of his life, see him as more than a friend and a younger boy.&nbsp; But the year brings more than anyone anticipated.&nbsp; This honest look into the mind and heart of an insecure, hormonally-charged 14-year-old boy is a true achievement. It's wickedly funny, intelligent, surprising, </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">and absolutely heartbreaking. &nbsp; </span><br /><br /><br /><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">And my two very favorites of the year ...&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></b><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-DXp9wfVCyGI/UsIoSCXqb4I/AAAAAAAACxk/UG0LKp5cVvc/s1600/All+the+Truth.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-DXp9wfVCyGI/UsIoSCXqb4I/AAAAAAAACxk/UG0LKp5cVvc/s1600/All+the+Truth.jpg" height="200" width="132" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i><b>All the Truth that's In Me</b></i></span><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Julie Berry&nbsp;</span></b><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Four years ago, Judith and her best friend disappeared.&nbsp; Her friend's body was found in the river; Judith returns to town two years later, mutilated and unable to speak.&nbsp; Viewed as cursed and ignored by the town and her family, Judith silently pours her heart out to Lucas, the boy she has loved since childhood.&nbsp; </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">With echoes of <i>The Scarlet Letter</i> and <i>Speak</i></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">, <i>All the Truth That's in Me</i> is an exquisite, completely captivating novel.&nbsp;&nbsp;Readers are immediately pulled into Judith's silent world and compelled by the mystery surrounding her disappearance.&nbsp; This quiet but determined girl grabs hold of your heart as she searches for answers, for hope, and for her lost voice.&nbsp; </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">References to Joan of Arc, emphasizing sacrifices for love, and the use of the Psalms as a mode of healing are brilliant.&nbsp; </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">This rich, beautifully executed story stays with the reader long after the final page is turned. </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b><i>Fangirl</i></b></span><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span></b><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Rainbow Rowell</span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Cath and twin sister Wren have been inseparable for years.&nbsp; They share a love for the fantasy series <i>Simon Snow</i> and the world of fanfiction surrounding the beloved stories.&nbsp; But, as they prepare to go away to college, Wren seems to be pulling away from Simon and from Cath.&nbsp; Wren has always been the more confident, extroverted sister and trying to navigate college without her is a big challenge for reserved, socially-awkward Cath.&nbsp; But, the year is full of surprises, new friendships, trials and triumphs, and unexpected love. Is it possible for Cath to leave the boy wizard's magical world behind and fully embrace her own reality?&nbsp; This novel is simply outstanding.&nbsp; The characters are real, complicated, and funny; the dialogue quick and unforgettable (I have read the conversations over and over, treasuring the humor, originality, and emotion). This is a story that wedges into your heart and never leaves. It is pure magic. &nbsp; </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><u>NOTE</u>:&nbsp; I <i>LOVED</i> Rowell's <i>Eleanor &amp; Park</i>, also released this year; but I decided to select just one to spotlight in this list and <i>Fangirl</i> won out. The deciding factor? Levi ;) I am head-over-heels for this guy!&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-5rXuQ9AV8hM/UsIvCRZqN1I/AAAAAAAACx0/yZOsYqVB4ak/s1600/PicMonkey+Collage.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-5rXuQ9AV8hM/UsIvCRZqN1I/AAAAAAAACx0/yZOsYqVB4ak/s1600/PicMonkey+Collage.jpg" height="400" width="400" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">These were the standouts for me from a year of many excellent reads. What were your 2013 favs?&nbsp; &nbsp; </span>Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-78486647995962670532013-12-22T14:00:00.001-06:002013-12-22T14:00:53.119-06:00Jillicious Gift Ideas!<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-43ofuiR3MB4/Urc2gpJ46xI/AAAAAAAACtY/voMqVYxP_ao/s1600/christmas+gift+ideas.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-43ofuiR3MB4/Urc2gpJ46xI/AAAAAAAACtY/voMqVYxP_ao/s1600/christmas+gift+ideas.jpg" height="320" width="270" /></a></div><br />Need a few ideas for your last minute shopping?&nbsp; Read on!<br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-OmzJg-BScb4/UrZEVGX-UgI/AAAAAAAACsc/skasmJPfqPk/s1600/Little+Golden+Book.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-OmzJg-BScb4/UrZEVGX-UgI/AAAAAAAACsc/skasmJPfqPk/s1600/Little+Golden+Book.jpg" height="200" width="165" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-size: large;"><b><i>Everything I Need to Know I learned in a Little Golden Book&nbsp; </i>&nbsp;</b></span><br />by Diane Muldrow<br /><i><br /></i>I LOVED the Little Golden Books.&nbsp; I read and treasured so many, favorites being <i>The Poky Little Puppy </i>and <i>The Saggy Baggy Elephant.&nbsp; </i>This new book celebrating this special collection was created by Diane Muldrow.&nbsp; Longtime editor of the beloved Little Golden Books, Muldrow realized that these books offer excellent advice for almost every real-life situation.&nbsp; She combined these lessons and original illustrations into this special little guide to life manual.&nbsp;&nbsp; Give <i>Everything I Need to Know I Learned in a Little Golden Book&nbsp;</i> to those who grew up reading the Little Goldens, to&nbsp; lovers of children's literature, or to anyone who needs to be reminded what is important in life.<br /><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-BezZUQqBy0Y/UrZMIAVVDqI/AAAAAAAACs4/6-Cvg3bGeCo/s1600/book-lust-to-go.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-BezZUQqBy0Y/UrZMIAVVDqI/AAAAAAAACs4/6-Cvg3bGeCo/s1600/book-lust-to-go.jpg" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-size: large;"><i><b>Book Lust To Go</b></i></span><br />by Nancy Pearl<br /><br />A friend gave this at a recent book exchange, and I thought it was such an excellent idea for a book!&nbsp; Librarian/author Nancy Pearl has created a guide of recommended reading for travelers.&nbsp; <i>Book Lust To Go</i> includes fiction and nonfiction books to read before traveling to a new locale.&nbsp; From San Francisco to Sri Lanka, travelers will find recommendations for over 120 travel sites.&nbsp; A must for the traveler (or armchair traveler!) on your list! <br /><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-N7iZCMC6pXM/UrZJSpnYcLI/AAAAAAAACss/SJC_kGl73O8/s1600/Tequila+mockingbird.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-N7iZCMC6pXM/UrZJSpnYcLI/AAAAAAAACss/SJC_kGl73O8/s1600/Tequila+mockingbird.jpg" height="320" width="229" /></a></div><br />&nbsp;<i><b>&nbsp;</b></i><br /><span style="font-size: large;"><i><b>Tequila Mockingbird&nbsp;&nbsp;</b></i></span><br />by Tim Federle<br /><br />Having recently finished Federle's first middle grade novel, I came across this fabulous little book he also published this year.&nbsp; The cocktail guide contains 65 recipes that pay homage to literary favorites including Brave New Swirled, Gin Eyre, Romeo and Julep, Huckleberry Sin, and Are You There God? It's Me, Margarita.&nbsp; <i>Tequila Mockingbird </i>is a fun gift for the readers, book club members, or cocktail enthusiasts on your holiday gift list.&nbsp; <br /><br /><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-EwDyreutCnY/UrZSY4JaFBI/AAAAAAAACtI/osMrg-kIOV0/s1600/Anna+Karenina.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-EwDyreutCnY/UrZSY4JaFBI/AAAAAAAACtI/osMrg-kIOV0/s1600/Anna+Karenina.JPG" /></a></div><br /><br /><br /><span style="font-size: large;"><i><b>Anna Karenina: A Fashion Primer</b></i></span><br />by Jennifer Adams&nbsp; <br /><br />This darling board book is perfect for every little (or not-so-little!) fashionista on your list.&nbsp; A dear friend gave it to me, and I am head over heels.&nbsp; Author Jennifer Adams has created several other board books for the young reader inspired by classics such as <i>Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, Jane Eyre,</i> and <i>Wuthering Heights</i>. I think I've got a new collection to work on! <br /><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-a2Zek3EQ2bM/Urc55t7vaJI/AAAAAAAACt4/5vJ3O20OqbA/s1600/Poems+to+learn+by+heart.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-a2Zek3EQ2bM/Urc55t7vaJI/AAAAAAAACt4/5vJ3O20OqbA/s1600/Poems+to+learn+by+heart.JPG" height="320" width="255" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-size: large;"><i><b>Poems to Learn by Heart</b></i></span><br />by Caroline Kennedy, illustrated by Jon Muth<br /><br />This collection of poems has a verse for every occasion.&nbsp; Some silly, some serious, some familiar, some new, but all worth reading, reciting, and remembering.&nbsp; I love this illustrated collection; it reminds the reader of the beauty of verse and the power of learning something by heart. Give this to wordsmiths young and old.&nbsp;<br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yd93kb3VBiU/Urc-XT-42RI/AAAAAAAACuE/GVsAx3W8j58/s1600/snowflakes+fall.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-yd93kb3VBiU/Urc-XT-42RI/AAAAAAAACuE/GVsAx3W8j58/s1600/snowflakes+fall.jpg" height="300" width="320" /></a></div><br /><br /><span style="font-size: large;"><i><b>Snowflakes Fall</b></i></span><br />by Patricia Maclachlan, illustrated by Steven Kellogg<br /><br />Patricia Maclachlan and Steven Kellogg collaborated to create this heartfelt tribute to the lives lost in the Sandy Hook, Connecticut tragedy.&nbsp; In this special book former Sandy Hook resident Kellogg and the Newbery Medalist Maclachlan celebrate individual uniqueness, the gift of life, and the hope that is found in renewal.&nbsp; Give this to one who has experienced loss this year or to anyone as a reminder to treasure each day.&nbsp;<br /><br />&nbsp; <br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vAXN0e0AD0w/UrdCQQ-FNlI/AAAAAAAACug/i9CimrUKX-w/s1600/battlebunny.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vAXN0e0AD0w/UrdCQQ-FNlI/AAAAAAAACug/i9CimrUKX-w/s1600/battlebunny.jpg" height="320" width="226" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-size: large;"><i><b>Battle Bunny</b></i></span><br />by Jon Scieszka and Mac Barnett, illustrated by Matthew Myers<br /><br />Now to end on a light note ... and to bring things full circle.&nbsp; Hilarious authors Scieszka and Barnett along with illustrator Myers have created a truly original picture book.&nbsp; It begins as a gentle, Little-Golden-Book-like story about a bunny's surprise birthday party.&nbsp; Then, Alex, who receives the book from his Gammy, takes a pencil to the sweet <i>Birthday Bunny</i> and turns it into<i> Battle Bunny</i>, a devil-may-care rabbit intent to take over the world.&nbsp; It is a riot!&nbsp; Give this to young readers with a sense of humor.&nbsp; After reading, these young creators can go to the <a href="http://mybirthdaybunny.com/" target="_blank">Birthday Bunny site</a> to download a clean copy of <i>Birthday Bunny </i>and then recreate the story in their own way. &nbsp;&nbsp; <br /><br /><br />Good luck finishing up the last minute shopping.&nbsp; Best wishes for a happy, book-filled holiday!&nbsp; :) <br /><br /><br /><br />Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-62274278140787391102013-12-12T07:30:00.000-06:002013-12-12T19:03:49.898-06:00Jillicious Reading: P.S. Be Eleven<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bqxEGw54f0Q/UqYLl--HvGI/AAAAAAAACqs/10_dsiF8Bzs/s1600/P.S.+Be+Eleven.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" height="320" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bqxEGw54f0Q/UqYLl--HvGI/AAAAAAAACqs/10_dsiF8Bzs/s1600/P.S.+Be+Eleven.JPG" width="213" /></a></div><i><span style="font-size: x-large;"><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">P.S. Be Eleven</span></b></span></i><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by Rita Williams-Garcia</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Summary</b>:&nbsp; After spending the summer of 1968 with their estranged mother, Delphine and her little sisters, Vonetta and Fern, are heading back to Brooklyn. They take with them a deeper understanding of their mother (a poet/activist), experiences with the Black Panthers, and newly discovered independence. Back home, Delphine struggles to reconcile new thoughts and perspectives with her changing family and the struggles of sixth grade. And, the only help her mother is offering is a continual reminder at the end of her letters to "Be Eleven."&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Thoughts</b>:&nbsp; I loved <i>One Crazy Summer</i>.&nbsp; It was the perfect blend of family drama, 1960s tensions, differing </span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-x9KXDK41BLM/UqZxQbhrZwI/AAAAAAAACr0/1PaWfzBKHRM/s1600/One+Crazy+Summer.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" height="200" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-x9KXDK41BLM/UqZxQbhrZwI/AAAAAAAACr0/1PaWfzBKHRM/s1600/One+Crazy+Summer.jpg" width="133" /></a></span></div><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">perspectives, strong female characters, and the universal struggles of growing up, all explored with humor and heart.&nbsp; And now in the sequel <i>P.S. Be Eleven</i>, Rita Williams-Garcia completely succeeds again!&nbsp; I may even like this one better than the first.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">This novel picks up right where the last ended, allowing the reader to immediately see the way the girls' summer experiences affected them and how balancing new thoughts and independent streaks is going to be a challenge at home.&nbsp; As in <i>One Crazy Summer,</i> the story is told from the strong, honest voice of eleven-going-on-twelve-year-old Delphine.&nbsp; She faces many obstacles as she tries to control her headstrong little sisters, laments being the tallest girl in her class, worries about the Valentine Dance, tries to accept that her father is dating, and seeks to understand her uncle who has returned from Vietnam a changed, melancholy man.&nbsp; The story is interspersed with letters to and from her mother, Cecile; the correspondence perfectly contrasts the perspective of a woman dedicated to a cause and that of a young girl trying to figure things out, many times simply her own feelings. </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">One of my favorite parts is when the girls fall in love at first sight with The Jackson Five. :) Williams-Garcia perfectly depicts the thrill of being swept away by new music and celebrity infatuation.&nbsp; Reading it, I was immediately a kid again falling for Sean Cassidy, listening to <i>Da Doo Run Run</i> over and over (<i>"Somebody told me that her name was JILL!!</i>")&nbsp; :) </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Through it all, Delphine begins to reconcile her experiences, learn from new ones, and figure out who she is in ... her family, in her class, and in the tumultuous world.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Read <i>P.S. Be Eleven</i>, if you ...&nbsp;</span><br /><ul><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">read <i>One Crazy Summer</i></span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">enjoy quality historical fiction</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">like stories about strong, feisty girls</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">struggled being the oldest sister (or the youngest ... or stuck in the middle!) &nbsp; </span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">want to expand your views of life in the 1960s</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">have ever fallen head-over-heels for a celebrity or boy band!&nbsp; :)&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></li></ul><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://www.ritawg.com/" target="_blank">Click here to visit Rita Williams-Garcia's website</a> to learn more about these books and her writing.&nbsp; I hear she is working on another story about these plucky Gaither sisters... I'll be the first in line! </span>Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-15840924071308609332013-12-11T07:00:00.000-06:002013-12-11T07:00:04.630-06:00Jillicious Reading: We Were Liars<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-cbBylxKLmm8/UpbC4ghRJ8I/AAAAAAAACn8/RjcRycYvBoA/s1600/we-were-liars-e-lockhart.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-cbBylxKLmm8/UpbC4ghRJ8I/AAAAAAAACn8/RjcRycYvBoA/s1600/we-were-liars-e-lockhart.jpg" height="320" width="220" /></a></div><span style="font-size: x-large;"><b><i><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">We Were Liars</span></i></b></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">by E. Lockhart</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Summary</b>: Cadence Sinclair Eastman is the oldest grandchild of the flawless Sinclair family.&nbsp; Her summers are spent on a private island with her cousins ... her best friends ...and the boy she loves. Together they are The Liars. Then, friendships turn destructive, lies are told, secrets are buried. Cady desperately seeks to discover the painful truth behind the accident and the family's false facade.&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Thoughts</b>: <i>We Were Liars </i>is a truly remarkable novel.&nbsp; It is like none I have ever read.&nbsp; From the first page, the reader is swept into the "perfect" world of the Sinclairs and absorbed by the secrets this privileged family hides. &nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Lockhart masterfully crafts vivid characters - </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>Johnny, he is bounce, effort, and snark... Mirren, she is sugar, curiosity, and rain..</i>. - </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">and tells a haunting tale that stuns at every turn.&nbsp; It is tense, atmospheric, exquisite.&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I highly recommend this book to teen and adult readers looking for a captivating, unforgettable story.&nbsp; And if anyone asks how it ends, <b>LIE! </b></span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Read <i>We Were Liars</i>, if you ...&nbsp;</span><br /><ul><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">are a fan of E.Lockhart&nbsp;</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">enjoy sophisticated, intelligent writing</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">like suspense, plot twists, and surprises</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">are intrigued with the lives of those who "summer" on islands ;)&nbsp;</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">want to read the book that everyone will be talking about! </span></li></ul><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://www.emilylockhart.com./" target="_blank">Click here</a> to learn more about E. Lockhart and her books.&nbsp; <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qzXA1SlWSzc" target="_blank">Click here</a> to hear the author reading an excerpt from <i>We Were Liars</i>.&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><u>Note</u>:&nbsp; <i>We Were Liars</i> will be released May 13, 2014.&nbsp; <a href="http://www.amazon.com/We-Were-Liars-E-Lockhart/dp/038574126X" target="_blank">Click here</a> to pre-order a copy!</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span>Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-5898161019195681922013-12-10T07:30:00.000-06:002013-12-10T07:30:00.770-06:00Follow me! <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Tk37M5obRmg/UqZdGpUbFqI/AAAAAAAACrM/Vs1NodLsUzk/s1600/Twitter+key.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Tk37M5obRmg/UqZdGpUbFqI/AAAAAAAACrM/Vs1NodLsUzk/s1600/Twitter+key.jpg" height="179" width="320" /></a></div>In effort to organize my life :) , I have created a new Twitter handle to go along with the blog. <br /><br />Please <a href="https://twitter.com/JilliciousRdg" target="_blank">follow @JilliciousRdg</a> for tweets about books, libraries, and all things literary.<br /><br />Continue to <a href="https://twitter.com/jillbellomy" target="_blank">follow @jillbellomy </a>for musings about food, travels, college sports, Texas A&amp;M, and pugs!&nbsp; :)<br /><br />See you in the Twitterverse! &nbsp; Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-19808685152622100202013-12-09T11:00:00.002-06:002013-12-09T12:25:00.508-06:00NCTE & ALAN<span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">In November, I had the chance to attend my first <a href="http://www.ncte.org/" target="_blank">NCTE (National Council of Teachers of English) </a>Annual Convention. The conference was in Boston - one of my very favorite cities ... added bonus! </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Four colleagues and I presented a session on igniting middle school readers and building a reading community.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Ew2JB8keCH8/UqEu7ECa4II/AAAAAAAACoc/akZC2Nrw2oA/s1600/NCTE+9.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Ew2JB8keCH8/UqEu7ECa4II/AAAAAAAACoc/akZC2Nrw2oA/s1600/NCTE+9.JPG" height="183" width="320" /></a></div><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-uBEX83VVL98/UqEvMSf_I9I/AAAAAAAACpU/j0doaSPGGXE/s1600/NCTE+14.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-uBEX83VVL98/UqEvMSf_I9I/AAAAAAAACpU/j0doaSPGGXE/s1600/NCTE+14.JPG" height="185" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><i>Our t-shirts advertising the session were a hit!&nbsp; </i></span></td></tr></tbody></table><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">We presented Friday afternoon, the first day of the conference.&nbsp; We had a lovely crowd, and the presentation went very smoothly ... quite a relief after planning and preparing for so many months!&nbsp; After presenting, we were able to relax and just enjoy the conference and the sharing of ideas.&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Highlights of included:&nbsp;</span><br /><ul><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>a fabulous dinner with Little, Brown</b>.&nbsp; I was able to sit next to the amazing <b>Matthew Quick</b>., author of <i>The Silver Linings Playbook</i>, and my favorite, <i>Sorta Like a Rock Star.</i> &nbsp; What a treat to hear about his upcoming releases and many movie deals! &nbsp;</span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>an excellent session featuring some literary rock stars</b>&nbsp; ... master teachers <b>Colby Sharp</b> and <b>Donalyn Miller</b>, literature guru <b>Teri Lesesne</b>, literacy experts <b>Kylene Beers</b> and <b>Bob Probst</b>, and hilarious author and reading promoter <b>Jon Scieszka.</b>&nbsp; The standing-room-only session was entertaining, informative, and inspiring. <br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-iUmbIuphT7s/UqEvO3bbgzI/AAAAAAAACp8/7VR1AdZV6g8/s1600/Scieszka.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-iUmbIuphT7s/UqEvO3bbgzI/AAAAAAAACp8/7VR1AdZV6g8/s1600/Scieszka.JPG" height="320" width="240" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><i>Jon Scieszka ... such a hoot!</i></td></tr></tbody></table></span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>a delightful Scholastic brunch</b> with Reader's Theater readings from fabulous authors including <b>Rodman Philbrick, Elizabeth Eulberg</b>, and <b>Barbara Kerley</b>.&nbsp; The room fell in love with <b>Natalie Lloyd</b>, debut author of <i>A Snicker of Magic</i>.&nbsp; </span></li><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Delicious East Coast food!</b>&nbsp; One of my favorites was the lobster roll at <a href="http://islandcreekoysterbar.com/" target="_blank">Island Creek Oyster Bar</a> (Best Lobster Roll 2013... definitely earned my vote!) And, a stop at <a href="http://flourbakery.com/" target="_blank">Flour Bakery</a>, breakfast at <a href="http://www.paramountboston.com/" target="_blank">The Paramount</a>, and a dinner in the North End are Boston musts! </span></li></ul><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /> </span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-lmy4T_-9l0M/UqEvNwTnZKI/AAAAAAAACp0/-_5p7E43Eek/s1600/Lobster+Roll+1.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-lmy4T_-9l0M/UqEvNwTnZKI/AAAAAAAACp0/-_5p7E43Eek/s1600/Lobster+Roll+1.JPG" height="320" width="320" /></a></div><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /> </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"> </span><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-vjIBiHp80ks/UqEvPxkHKjI/AAAAAAAACqM/4YCNuYWmwFo/s1600/photo+5.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-vjIBiHp80ks/UqEvPxkHKjI/AAAAAAAACqM/4YCNuYWmwFo/s1600/photo+5.JPG" height="240" width="320" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><i><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Blueberry Pancakes at The Paramount</span></i></td></tr></tbody></table><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"> </span><br /><ul><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Visiting the amazing Boston Public Library.</b>&nbsp; I may move to this city just so I can go here on a regular basis.&nbsp; It was almost a religious experience.&nbsp; ;)&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></li></ul><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-KOevRqfOgdo/UqEvKoWY00I/AAAAAAAACo0/h1VgGAiWByI/s1600/BPL.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-KOevRqfOgdo/UqEvKoWY00I/AAAAAAAACo0/h1VgGAiWByI/s1600/BPL.JPG" height="320" width="320" /></a></div><br /><ul><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Sitting with incredible Jerry Spinelli at a Random House dinner.</b>&nbsp; He is such a talented man and a truly amazing person.&nbsp; It was an honor to get to talk with him.</span></li></ul><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-1cCisJCFuXg/UqEvL3qbXjI/AAAAAAAACpM/6K6-SW305S4/s1600/NCTE+1.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-1cCisJCFuXg/UqEvL3qbXjI/AAAAAAAACpM/6K6-SW305S4/s1600/NCTE+1.JPG" height="320" width="320" /></a></div><br /><ul><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;<b>Meeting Lindsey Leavitt.</b>&nbsp; She is one of my favorite "chick lit" authors.&nbsp; Her books are heartfelt and hilarious.&nbsp; I really want her for my BFF.&nbsp; ;)</span></li></ul><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp; </span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-4bNNb0mMtcI/UqEvPR-RpJI/AAAAAAAACqE/WztRxKVKgCM/s1600/photo+4.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-4bNNb0mMtcI/UqEvPR-RpJI/AAAAAAAACqE/WztRxKVKgCM/s1600/photo+4.JPG" height="320" width="320" /></a></div><br /><ul><li><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Meeting SCOUT!</b> ... aka Mary Badham, the darling lady who played Scout in <i>To Kill a Mockingbird!&nbsp;&nbsp;</i> </span></li></ul><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp; </span><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-JsJ2VZtCs88/UqEvNgyFjbI/AAAAAAAACpo/SRXf9DoHIbs/s1600/NCTE+4.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-JsJ2VZtCs88/UqEvNgyFjbI/AAAAAAAACpo/SRXf9DoHIbs/s1600/NCTE+4.JPG" height="240" width="320" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp; </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">After the conference, we were able to stay for the <a href="http://www.alan-ya.org/" target="_blank">ALAN (Assembly on Literature for Adolescents)</a> Workshop. The event kicks off with a cocktail party for all attendees and featured authors. &nbsp;</span><br /><i></i><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-E30b17vXot0/UqEvKosuiGI/AAAAAAAACo8/grXXvi7XUwE/s1600/Dessen.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-E30b17vXot0/UqEvKosuiGI/AAAAAAAACo8/grXXvi7XUwE/s1600/Dessen.JPG" height="320" width="240" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><i>The lovely Sarah Dessen</i></td></tr></tbody></table><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><table align="center" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" class="tr-caption-container" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: center;"><tbody><tr><td style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-zN-FbLrSpmI/UqEvNynRxLI/AAAAAAAACpw/20Nn0tG_RO8/s1600/Scieszka+1.JPG" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-zN-FbLrSpmI/UqEvNynRxLI/AAAAAAAACpw/20Nn0tG_RO8/s1600/Scieszka+1.JPG" height="320" width="240" /></a></td></tr><tr><td class="tr-caption" style="text-align: center;"><i>The hilarious Jon Scieszka </i></td></tr></tbody></table><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The next morning you show up, and they hand you a HUGE box of books!&nbsp; Opening it feels like Christmas morning!&nbsp; Then you get to listen to author panels all day and get books signed by favorite authors.&nbsp; Pure heaven for lovers of young adult lit! </span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-07E28BtmVtg/UqEvKnhigjI/AAAAAAAACow/N7_98NvdtOY/s1600/ALAN+box.JPG" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-07E28BtmVtg/UqEvKnhigjI/AAAAAAAACow/N7_98NvdtOY/s1600/ALAN+box.JPG" height="240" width="320" /></a></div><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">It was a terrific weekend celebrating books, authors, and literacy in an amazing city.&nbsp; I am thankful for the chance to attend, and can't for next year!&nbsp; </span>&nbsp; Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-23982767516907049402013-11-09T11:04:00.001-06:002013-11-09T11:04:52.564-06:00Caldecott! <div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-IuQxGDjXJ7k/UnsGAdkfj-I/AAAAAAAAB_Y/DI_gS56hTMU/s1600/caldecott-medal.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-IuQxGDjXJ7k/UnsGAdkfj-I/AAAAAAAAB_Y/DI_gS56hTMU/s1600/caldecott-medal.jpg" /></a></div><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Since I started teaching elementary school and sharing books with my students over 20 years ago, I have admired and devoured the books that have received the annual Caldecott Medal and Honors.&nbsp; As a new librarian, I was delighted to share these special books with more and more readers and to introduce them to artistic elements and mediums.&nbsp; A favorite yearly activity became issuing a Caldecott Challenge and hearing from students which of the winners were among their favorites.&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">It has been a longtime dream of mine to serve on the Caldecott Committee.&nbsp; </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">As a lover of literature, art and design, I've always felt this would be such an incredible experience.&nbsp; </span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I am over the moon to report that I will be on the ballot for the 2014 committee!&nbsp; It is a long shot, but it's a shot.&nbsp; I am truly honored to be considered and beyond thrilled at the possibility of serving on this esteemed selection committee. Thank you, ALSC (and to a special friend who suggested my name to the committee!), for this amazing opportunity! </span><br /><br />Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-3082103360520982882013-11-04T19:38:00.002-06:002013-11-04T19:38:11.953-06:00Jillicious Side Dish: Favorite Things<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-JTgYm16JMTw/UnMD5ba2qKI/AAAAAAAAB8c/mQZ8tojzTOc/s1600/favorite+things.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-JTgYm16JMTw/UnMD5ba2qKI/AAAAAAAAB8c/mQZ8tojzTOc/s1600/favorite+things.jpg" height="240" width="320" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">A few recent finds for bibliophiles ... </span><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span></b><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span></b><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span></b><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span></b><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span></b><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Tommy Hilfiger Book Dress</span></b><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-s6KEDFhWOF8/UnMDSXiEv-I/AAAAAAAAB8U/F5pUUYGhFT8/s1600/Hilfiger+book+dress.tif" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-s6KEDFhWOF8/UnMDSXiEv-I/AAAAAAAAB8U/F5pUUYGhFT8/s1600/Hilfiger+book+dress.tif" height="320" width="261" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">A friend alerted me to <a href="http://www1.macys.com/shop/product/tommy-hilfiger-dress-long-sleeve-printed-shirtdress?ID=950342" target="_blank">this darling shirt dress</a> covered in books.&nbsp; A must for a librarian or bibliophile, right?&nbsp; </span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><b>Kate Spade's Required Reading Collection</b></span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;">&nbsp;<a href="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-wKqAwolq1mc/UnMCyoqYqZI/AAAAAAAAB8Q/pRUJLq3eMdI/s1600/Kate+Spade+required+reading+collection.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-wKqAwolq1mc/UnMCyoqYqZI/AAAAAAAAB8Q/pRUJLq3eMdI/s1600/Kate+Spade+required+reading+collection.jpg" height="214" width="320" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I love Kate Spade.&nbsp; And, when she introduced the Required Reading Collection, I knew we were soul mates for life.&nbsp; These are pricey, but definitely worth saving for!&nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://www.katespade.com/required-reading-bon-shopper/PXRU4507,en_US,pd.html" target="_blank">Bon Shopper</a></span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://www.katespade.com/required-reading-index-organizer/PXRU4511,en_US,pd.html" target="_blank">Index Shopper</a></span><br /><br /><br /><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Longchamp's Shopping Tote</span></b><br /><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-wWPvefvL6O4/UnWjdcRx1rI/AAAAAAAAB-0/rBh9aK4NllY/s1600/Longchampe.png" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-wWPvefvL6O4/UnWjdcRx1rI/AAAAAAAAB-0/rBh9aK4NllY/s1600/Longchampe.png" height="320" width="320" /></a></div><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><br /></span><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">I am addicted to <a href="http://us.longchamp.com/pliage/nylon" target="_blank">these totes by Longchamp</a>.&nbsp; They are perfect for the bibliophile as they are roomy enough to accommodate purse essentials PLUS the necessary book (or two!) AND an iPad and/or Kindle. I've tried purchasing other purses, but quickly return to this tote for its roominess. &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp; </span><br /><br />Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com1tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-8679112160625797568.post-33427017221529707442013-11-02T19:22:00.003-05:002013-11-02T20:37:31.114-05:00Texas Bluebonnet List Announced! <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vAdjdSozyIk/UnWasUKFu7I/AAAAAAAAB-Y/yZH8tbaXH94/s1600/battlebunny.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"><img border="0" height="200" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vAdjdSozyIk/UnWasUKFu7I/AAAAAAAAB-Y/yZH8tbaXH94/s1600/battlebunny.jpg" width="140" /></a><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The 2014-2015 Texas Bluebonnet Award Master List was announced at the Texas Book Festival in Austin on October 26.&nbsp; The announcements were made by the hilarious Jon Scieszka and Mac Barnett, creators of the new <b><i>Battle Bunny</i></b>.&nbsp;</span><br /><br /><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-tzR5GohIzFk/UnWeCuyMYzI/AAAAAAAAB-k/T1ZsaV40yDc/s1600/Bluebonnet.gif" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-tzR5GohIzFk/UnWeCuyMYzI/AAAAAAAAB-k/T1ZsaV40yDc/s1600/Bluebonnet.gif" /></a><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">The Texas Bluebonnet List is a list of recommended reading for students in grades 3 - 6.&nbsp; Readers who read 5 or more of the nominees are eligible to vote for their favorite to receive the Texas Bluebonnet Award.&nbsp; The voting takes place in January; the recipient receives the award in April at the TLA Annual Conference. &nbsp; </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://www.txla.org/sites/tla/files/groups/TBA/Texas%20Bluebonnet%20Award%20Master%20List%202014.pdf" target="_blank">Click here to see the complete 2014-2015 list</a>. &nbsp;</span><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;"><a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W9uShLx0NoM&amp;desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DW9uShLx0NoM&amp;app=desktop" target="_blank">Click here to see the announcement of the awards</a>. &nbsp; </span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;,sans-serif;">Two early favorites on the list are <i><a href="http://www.jilliciousreading.com/2013/09/jillicious-reading-counting-by-7s.html" target="_blank">Counting by 7s</a></i> by Holly Goldberg Sloan and <a href="http://www.jilliciousreading.com/2013/08/jillicious-snacks-back-to-school-means.html" target="_blank"><i>The Day the Crayons Quit</i></a> by Drew Daywalt, illustrated by Oliver Jeffers.&nbsp; And, of course I love anything by the great Jarrett J. Krosoczka.&nbsp; I look forward to seeing which books my students enjoy! &nbsp; </span><br /><br /><br />Jill Bellomyhttps://plus.google.com/100026530469507112831noreply@blogger.com0