Book Review: Moll Flanders

I fully expected to enjoy this book. Among my favorites are so many of the classics: Wuthering Heights, Emma, Anna Karenina… you know, all that old stuff. And while I understand how this book made quite a sensation—because of subject matter, narrator choice, and even story set-up—I don’t see how it’s still clinging on to…

Book Review: Disposable People

I am almost a hundred per cent certain that I have read this book before. Not only is the information and even the layout familiar to me, but there are so few books like it, out there. Which is a shame. See, the story goes like this: It was the beginning of the pandemic stay-at-home…

Book Review: Chasing Vines

If you are an American Christian, it is likely that you have encountered Beth Moore. Maybe I have, but this book, Chasing Vines, is the first time I can say for sure I have read her. Now it seems that everywhere I look I see Beth Moore and everywhere I turn I hear a reference…

Series Review: Dragonbreath

Disclaimer: The Dragonbreath series has nothing to do with Dragon’s Breath ice cream. It’s not that easy to find a local author to support, but my son did it for me. Ursula Vernon is an author out of Pittsboro, which is a town not that far from here (Durham, NC) and a place I will…

Author Review: Todd Parr

This review has been a long time in coming. Todd Parr didn’t fall onto my list of TBRs in any conventional way (though I just looked it up and one of his books is on the Best Picture Books list). It was more of a way for me to volunteer at my kids’ school. It…

Liasing with the Man

I’ve been in the writing biz for a long time. There is a caveat to that, which is that I have been only part-time in the biz for most of those years, sometimes very part time. In fact, there have been years when I got almost nothing done. And there have been others where I…

Book Review: The Strange Case of Origami Yoda

There have been many times during my twelve-year-old son’s life that we have tried to force science fiction, and especially Star Wars on him. While he has grinned and born many of these objects (sheets, clocks) and experiences (movie marathons), he has never really clicked with any of it. I should not have been surprised,…

Book Review: The Wheel on the School

You  might think, anymore, that I’m pulling your leg when I say a book was my favorite in fourth grade. It does seem like I say that a lot, but fourth grade was a golden year for me, so by “fourth grade” I mean around fourth grade. And in reality, I’ve only made this claim…

Author Review: Robert McCloskey

I started off on reading Robert McCloskey way back when my son and I read Homer Price, like a few years ago. Shortly after, I reviewed the classic, Make Way for Ducklings, and then got Lentil from the library. All this time later, I have read all of his picture books (which aren’t many), and…

Writing Prompted: Therapy for a Modern Soul

The following is impromptu flash fiction based on a writing prompt. I found the prompt at thinkwritten.com. The idea was to write about the weather outside my window. _______________ There is something I don’t like about this house: you can’t hear anything. I can look out the windows right now, at the impossibly tall and…

Foot on the Gas

Well, I will have my first writing group Zoom on Wednesday. (Perhaps we were all enjoying being cut off from civilization for a while, but now we know we must connect in order to keep the group alive.) I have so much to report, though there are things I wish I could be saying. Here’s…

Book Review: The Martian Chronicles

It is interesting, beginning any book. You don’t quite feel like you belong, you’re not sure if you’re speaking the right language. And where are you, anyways? What’s going on? Some books invite you in pretty quickly. Other books take a long time to acclimate to, sometimes so long that you give up on them…

Best Books: Philosophy and Classics

I wasn’t going to make a best books list for philosophy or for classics, but then I received a comment on my last best books list (religion and Christianity) that got me thinking. Philosophy books and classics—genres that I have read a lot of—were included in the very first best books list that I did,…

Best Books: Christianity and Religion

There are some books below that are on the wrong list, but I think I got most of them in the right spot. As always, I haven’t read these books and am not recommending them, per se (though if it has a link attached to it, I have read it and you can follow that…

Best Books: Plays, Musicals, and Screenplays

Not everyone reads plays, or at least after the required reading in high school and college. I do. (And more than Shakespeare, though I do love Shakespeare.) I enjoy them the same way I enjoy novels. Not that I read them like crazy, because I just don’t encounter them as much. Well, with this list…

Book Review: The Borrowers

Here are a few of the books that I remember loving in late-elementary school: A Wrinkle in Time, Caddie Woodlawn, The Wheel on the School, The Indian in the Cupboard, and The Borrowers. (Also the Babysitters Club, but we don’t need to pretend that’s great literature; just good, clean fun.) It occurs to me that…

Book Review: Because of Winn-Dixie

I hadn’t even noticed, until now, that I had two Kate DiCamillo reviews lined up one right after another. This is another book that I read with my son, but then gave a 24-hour re-read in order to review it fairly. I remembered it, but not well enough. I think that one of the reasons…