This “literary classic” has been published in 23 languages, was #1 on the NY Times Bestseller list, won a Newberrry Award and was turned into a movie. I never saw the movie because when I read the book for the first time several years ago I hated it. When my youngest daughter asked me to read it to her recently, I did it begrudgingly. But then I thought, maybe I’ll like it better this time. Maybe I just missed something the first time around. Well, the second time wasn’t any better. I just don’t get the hype.
Archive for the ‘Books’ Category
I get most of my books from Amazon.com (almost always buying used ones from resellers) and more and more I see the only way to get a copy of a publication is electronically — you have to download it to a Kindle. I don’t have a Kindle and I don’t WANT a Kindle. I want to read this stuff on a paper!!!
I just read Lois Lowry’s “Number the Stars” book to my kids. Or at least, tried very hard to. Only my youngest stuck it out the whole time, the other two drifted in and out of the room during the couple days it took me to read it. Anyhow, I thought it was a really really good book about a 10-year-old girl in Copenhagen during WW2 when the Germans occupied the country, and the Danes helped nearly all 8,000 Jews escape the country by smuggling them in boats across the sea to neutral Sweden. It’s a fictional account based on fact. I had no idea the Danes had done this brave and unselfish act on behalf of the Jews. It was very life affirming.
I also read her book “The Giver” (to myself). It was also very interesting, in a completely different way, as it was about the merits of a supposed utopian society where everything is the same. A movie version is supposed to be in the works. Another book worth checking out.
I realized yesterday as I was talking with my son about Greg, the Wimpy Kid, that now that I’ve read six of the seven books, I realized that Greg has never done something nice for anyone else. Ever. You’d think just once in a while he could think of others.
The kids and I both watched “Nanny McPhee” and “Nanny McPhee Returns” and do you know I sobbed at the end of both? They weren’t sad, just emotional for me. Now of course I want to read the “Nurse Matilda” books upon which the movies were based.
I recently blogged about my not being crazy about the first Diary of a Wimpy Kid book and the “Rodrick Rules” movie. However, I decided to give the wimpy kid another chance, since my son is SO hung up on them. So I read “Rodrick Rules” and “The Ugly Truth”, and I have to admit, I not only finished both books, but I actually got a few chuckles. And I’m going to go out of my way to read the other books too. However, I still don’t want to watch the movies, after what I saw from Rodrick Rules. I think the books are a lot sweeter (the movies change the book to make it more dramatic).
While home sick with my son, I randomly picked “Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life” from the library. He didn’t quite get it, but I thought it was really good. It was based on a book by Wendy Mass, so I got the book from the library. Since then I have read three more of her books: 11 Birthdays, 13 Gifts, and Every Soul a Star. They are geared to middle-schoolers, but I find them very interesting. I must be a 12-year-old at heart.
We were driving a bit this past weekend so we played the audio CD of the book “Holes”. I had heard about the book and movie for years, but it never appealed to me (a book all about kids digging holes?). Since we had run out of Andrew Clements audio CDs, I got this one. We listened to the whole thing over three days (it’s almost five hours long I think) and we were all hooked (it did take me a while to get into it; I found some of the basic plot implausible at first). A movie based on the book is supposed to be pretty good but I’m not sure if I want to see it. Sigourney Weaver plays one of the “villains”. I was thinking Angelica Houston or Tilda Swinton could be chilling in this role as well. Anyway, the book came out in 1998 and pre-teens/teenagers really connected with it. My niece, now 19, was obsessed with it, and today I mentioned it to a girl in her early ’20s and she said she too was obsessed with it. She and her friends even made their own movie from it. I remember at that age the book “The Outsiders” really wowed me.
When I was in the children’s room yesterday at the Akron Main Library I was wishing that I could read pretty much all the books that were in that huge, huge room. Picture books, fiction, non-fiction — everything.
1) I got another graphic novel by Marjane Satrapi called “Chicken with Plums”. It’s about one of her uncles and why he chose to end his life. Although Satrapi is a gifted storyteller and artist, I only have so much free time to read, and I didn’t feel like reading something that would get me depressed.
2) The kids and I listened to Beverly Cleary’s novel, “Dear Mr. Henshaw” in the car. I really enjoyed it; the kids weren’t into it so much. I checked out the sequel, “Strider”, but I’m not sure if I’m going to read it. The kids don’t want to hear it and again, I don’t know if I want to spend time on a book that will probably get me depressed.
3) An audio book the kids ARE hooked on now is “A Week in the Woods” by Andrew Clements. Since I liked “Frindle” so much, I saw that the library had more Clements’ audio books. The book is four hours and we have one more hour to go. We can’t wait to find out what happens!!*
4) I ordered “Kids Love Ohio” from Amazon. I had checked it out at the library and it had so many great ideas I had to have a copy for myself. I can’t wait to try some of them out!
*Note: we finished the book today and I’m a bit disappointed by the last quarter of it. I hate when that happens!