There will not be a Throwback Thursday post this week, as we have both taken a day to celebrate the new year (We might be recovering from a hangover or two as well). We’ve loved the time spent with our readers in 2014, and look forward to many more memories, reviews and readers, in 2015!
There will not be a Throwback Thursday post this week, due to Christmas. We hope you all have a wonderful Christmas Day, filled with joy, love, and of course, books. If you don’t celebrate Christmas, then Happy Hanukah, Merry/Happy Kwanza, Happy Festivus, and Happy Holidays.
Welcome to Books For Boys, publisher of the popular “And Then It Happened” book series by M & L Wade. Books For Boys writes quality, high-interest books for students in grades 3 – 6.
This is always my go to book for anyone having issues getting their children interested in reading. Boys especially, but girls enjoy this as well. The wonderful thing about this series is that each chapter is a story of its own. No need to have them read these long stories that are dragged out, each story is only a few pages! How can they argue with that? The books themselves are short also, always less than 100 pages with big print so they aren’t that intimidating to look at either. There are 11 books in total, so enough to keep them going for awhile, and help them build up their passion and confidence in reading.
The best part is that the stories are funny, the three boys get into all kinds of trouble (innocent trouble of course) and they have you laughing right from the very first chapter to the end. These stories are perfect for both read aloud and independent reading.
An extraordinarily different story by Robert Munsch is a gentle affirmation of the love a parent feels for their child–forever. Sheila McGraw’s soft and colorful pastels perfectly complement the sentiment of the book–one that will be read repeatedly for years.
Every kid thinks about running away at one point or another; few get farther than the end of the block. Young Sam Gribley gets to the end of the block and keeps going–all the way to the Catskill Mountains of upstate New York. There he sets up house in a huge hollowed-out tree, with a falcon and a weasel for companions and his wits as his tool for survival. In a spellbinding, touching, funny account, Sam learns to live off the land, and grows up a little in the process. Blizzards, hunters, loneliness, and fear all battle to drive Sam back to city life. But his desire for freedom, independence, and adventure is stronger. No reader will be immune to the compulsion to go right out and start whittling fishhooks and befriending raccoons.
Mistress Mary is quite contrary until she helps her garden grow. Along the way, she manages to cure her sickly cousin Colin, who is every bit as imperious as she. These two are sullen little peas in a pod, closed up in a gloomy old manor on the Yorkshire moors of England, until a locked-up garden captures their imaginations and puts the blush of a wild rose in their cheeks; “It was the sweetest, most mysterious-looking place any one could imagine. The high walls which shut it in were covered with the leafless stems of roses which were so thick, that they matted together…. ‘No wonder it is still,’ Mary whispered. ‘I am the first person who has spoken here for ten years.'” As new life sprouts from the earth, Mary and Colin’s sour natures begin to sweeten. For anyone who has ever felt afraid to live and love, The Secret Garden‘s portrayal of reawakening spirits will thrill and rejuvenate.
If you have not read this book, you should. Or watch the movie… just do something to familiarize yourself with this story. There are many reasons why you should do this:
1. There are references made to this story in the smallest of ways that you won’t ever understand until you read it
2. It’ll make you feel better about your life, what you have and who you are.
3. Your children, children’s children and children’s children’s children will have to read it so you might as well.
As you can tell by the date, this novel has been around forever, I almost don’t feel like it is fair to review it. There are all different takes and criticisms about the story line, characters and even the illustrations (if you have an illustrated copy). I would recommend an illustrated copy for a younger child just to take some of the pressure off for them.
Some people see this story as having ghosts, religious content, stereotypes and even racism. I warn you, all of this is true in a way. Keep in mind, it was written in 1910!!! All of these things were normal, this is how people wrote, felt and believed. You may not see the references made to ghosts, that is okay, it is a personal take on the story. I beg you all though, PLEASE, PLEASE give this book a read.
I know, everyone is saying “but I really don’t like classics”, I didn’t like classic either but this one I loved. You get so caught up in their lives and wanting to make sure everyone is going to be okay, wanting to know about the garden and to believe the effects of true, positive thinking. This book will stay with you forever.
With a bit of last summer’s sand in the pockets, the Traveling Pants and the Sisterhood that wears them embark on their 16th summer.
“Bridget: ” Impulsively sets off for Alabama, wanting to both confront her demons about her family and avoid them all at once.
“Lena: “Spends a blissful week with Kostos, making the unexplainable silence that follows his visit even more painful.
“Carmen: ” Is concerned that her mother is making a fool of herself over a man. When she discovers that her mother borrowed the Pants to wear on a date, she’s certain of it.
“Tibby: ” Not about to spend another summer working at Wallman’s, she takes a film course only to find it’s what happens off-camera that teaches her the most.