Book Review: Wonder

Wonder by R.J. Palacio is my daughter’s favorite book (and she is not alone). I’ve been meaning to read it for at least a year, and I have even already watched the movie (because my daughter wasn’t going to wait around for me). Having barely set the book down over the past two days, I…

A Book a Day

Every once in awhile, I get out of the habit of reading on a regular, usually daily, basis. Often this is the indirect fault of media–TV or internet–but sometimes it’s because I haven’t encountered a good book in awhile so I start dragging my feet. This time, I think it was a combination of free…

Books That Changed My Life

The last four years have seen a lot of change in my life. Four years ago, my husband graduated from school and changed careers, and my last child at home went off to kindergarten. I started writing full-time and published a novel within nine months. Two years ago, we made the decision to take said-son…

Book Review: Roscoe Riley Rules #1

My son is what is termed a “reluctant reader.” It seems a little more–a little stronger–than reluctant, sometimes. About a year ago, a kind bibliophile who also happens to be family, sent along a small pile of easy reader-esque books which she hoped would entice my son to read. Alas, although he spent some time…

Series Review: Jack Stalwart

I will dare to give the Jack Stalwart series of children’s secret agent books three stars, but only because my eight-year-old son loves exactly two series of books, and this is one of them. If I had found these Elizabeth Singer Hunt books on my own, I would have only made it through the first…

Movie Review: Goosebumps

Goosebumps, the movie, released in 2015 by Sony Pictures. There are a few things that I need to say before I get to this movie. The first is that I do not allow my kids to read Goosebumps or watch the show, because they are too scary (and possibly I have some other reasons). That…

Series Review: Frog and Toad

The Frog and Toad series by Arnold Lobel, which we read in Harper’s Frog and Toad Storybook Treasury, which includes all four Frog and Toad books: Frog and Toad Are Friends Frog and Toad Together Frog and Toad All Year Days with Frog and Toad Arnold Lobel, 1933-1987, was a children’s book illustrator and writer.…

Best Books: World Literature

Woah, this list took me a long time to scrape together. Please don’t make too much of it (as I have not read the vast majority of the books), but I wanted a place to start with titles that didn’t appear in my largely American- and Western European-heavy best books lists. This list is not…

Book Review: The Bronte Sisters

The Bronte Sisters: The Brief Lives of Charlotte, Emily, and Anne, by junior biographer Catherine Reef, and published fairly recently by Clarion Books in 2012. When I ordered this book with pretty good reviews and a charming cover, I had no real idea what it was. I mean, I guess I knew it was a…

Series Review: The Land of Stories

The Land of Stories series, by Chris Colfer, published from 2012-2015 by Little Brown. The series consists of four books so far, and Colfer says the series will end with the fifth book, assumed to be published in 2016. I read the series because my daughter–and just about every other kid her age–is in to…

Best Books: Nonfiction and Journalism

Continuing to list the Best Books and breaking it up by genre, we have now made our way to nonfiction and journalism. Actually, I compiled this one long ago, but the length of the list intimidated me into procrastinating on it. Plus, I would much rather be reading fiction, right? Maybe not. I have read…

Best Books: Graphic Novels

I have long been intrigued by graphic novels. I have many times wandered to their section in the bookstore and run my finger along their spines, wondering which one I might like, pulling them out and flipping through the intense illustrations. But I have so little exposure to them, I really wouldn’t know where to…

Book Review: Go Set a Watchman

Go Set a Watchman, by Harper Lee. I read a Kindle copy given to me on the day the book was released, in July 2015. For further comments and articles on this book, Harper Lee, and the hype surrounding all of it, see these blog entries: Haven Kimmel Month Postponed; What? Harper Lee Is Back…

Book Reviews: The Professor and Villette

This review is for two books by Charlotte Bronte: The Professor and Villette. I read them in the Wordsworth Classic version (with a blue cover, not black) and the Bantam Classic version, respectively. The books were originally published in 1857 and 1853. Although The Professor was written before Charlotte Bronte’s other novels, it was repeatedly rejected and…

Series Review: The Secret Series

The middle grades Secret Series by Psuedonymous Bosch: The Name of This Book is Secret (2008); If You’re Reading This, It’s Too Late (2009); This Book is Not Good for You (2010); This Isn’t What It Looks Like (2011); and You Have to Stop This (2012), in order. Illustrated by Gilbert Ford. Published by Little,…

Book Reviews: Dave Ramsey

The Total Money Makeover (2003, Thomas Nelson) and Complete Guide to Money (2011, Lampo Press), both by Dave Ramsey, the Financial Peace money guru. Let’s just do this up front: you either love the Dave Ramsey system or you hate it. You either jump in with both feet and hang on for dear life, or…

All Aboard the Launch Train!

“Come on ride that train, and ride it! Woo-woot! Come on ride that train, and ride it! Woo-woot!” An oldie and a… ah, well. The point is, now you’ve got a dancing song in your head and you’re ready to celebrate the launch of The Night of One Hundred Thieves with me by boarding The…