Book Talk Tuesday: A Need So Beautiful

I just finished reading a YA book, A Need So Beautiful by Portland author, Suzanne Young.  Are you looking for a paranormal book to take you away for a while?  This book is it.

We all want to make our mark in the world.  Who wants to be forgotten?

When Charlotte feels “the Need”, she must go.  She’s a Forgotten like an earth angel, helping strangers in need.  However, each time Charlotte assists someone, a piece of Charlotte transforms.  Eventually all of  the people who knew Charlotte will forget her.

Charlotte struggles to accept her fate.  Who wants to be forgotten?  She wants to help her boyfriend and best friend but the Need doesn’t take her there.  She can choose to fight and live in the dark forever.  But will she?

Young weaves a tight tale of love, the desire to be remembered, and the fight between good and evil.  It’s refreshing to have a paranormal that doesn’t involve vampires and werewolves.  As somebody read and re-read Wuthering Heights in high school (when the YA genre didn’t exist), I can see me in high school today reading and rereading A Need So Beautiful.  And the ending will make you wish the sequel was coming out next week. (You’ll have to wait until next summer).

Read about more great books at The Lemme Library, host of Book Talk  Tuesday.

 Happy Reading.



Nonfiction Monday: Vacation Mode

Hi. I’m on vacation,can you tell? Between the two trips to the east coast to say good-bye to my aunt and follow up with her family matters, our own vacation road trip, and just getting the projects completed like my computer/writing room, this summer is flying by me.

I have been reading a couple of  great professional books this summer.  Teaching with Intention by Debbie Miller is one that will be a staff read this coming school year.  An easy book to read, it’s chock full of ideas and strategies to hone the art of teaching.

What I love is that even with 37 years of teaching behind me, there are points for me to consider.  One of these is revisiwing my beliefs about teaching and learning.  How can I refine them?  How can I update to match the 21st century students?  It’s great to get inside the head of one of the most masterful education leaders we currently have.

Here are some other fabulous nonfiction books:

A biography of Maria Anna Mozart  at Wrapped in Foil.

Speaking of Art: Colorful Quotes by Famous Painters edited by Bob Raczka at Janet Squires.

African Animal Alphabet at NC Teachers Stuff.

SOMETHING OUT OF NOTHING about Marie Curie at Rasco at RIF.

Dear Hot Dog by Mordicai Gerstein at Shelf Employed.

Elephants over at A Patchwork of Books.

This Tree Counts by Alison Formento at Simply Science.

Me . . . Jane and The Watcher about Jane Goodall at BookMuse

Sea Turtles by Laura Marsh at Geo Librarian.

Amelia and Eleanor Go for a Ride by Pam Munoz Ryan and Brian Selznick at Gathering Books

Not a Buzz to be Found: Insects in Winter at Nonfiction Detectives

Amelia Lost: The life and disappearance of Amelia Earhart by Candace Fleming at Jean Little Library

Happy Reading.  Enjoy!



Poetry Friday: Bed in Summer

I found this poem by Robert Louis Stevenson which fits the long days of summer in the northwest:

Bed in Summer

In winter I get up at night  
And dress by yellow candle-light.  
In summer, quite the other way,  
I have to go to bed by day.  

I have to go to bed and see         
The birds still hopping on the tree,  
Or hear the grown-up people’s feet  
Still going past me in the street.  

And does it not seem hard to you,  
When all the sky is clear and blue,  
And I should like so much to play,  
To have to go to bed by day

And while summer has been a bit gloomy here in Oregon, I love watching nightfall late from my bedroom. Plus I don’t wish those days that I wake to darkness to come soon.

Tabatha at The Opposite of Indifference is hosting Poetry Friday today.

Happy Reading.


Nonfiction Monday: Human Footprint

Put a shoe on my foot and you’re putting a size 10 on my dogs.  But have you wondered what the human footprint is for everything you will use, eat, wear, buy and throw out in a lifetime?

National Geographic Kids wants us to know in their new title: Human Footprint: Everything You Will Eat, Wear, Buy and Throw Out in Your Lifetime by Ellen Kirk.

This book features loads of interesting facts and tips to decrease the human footprint in easy to read text and fabulous photos.  Kirk is clear in her statement that the photos are not doctored, they represent the numbers,

The sections are divided into topics that are sure to grab you attention: diapers, candy bars, showers, milk, and clothes to name a few. Each section gives a fact on how much is used furthering explaining the impact on the environment to produce the item.

Did you know? This is for the average American who lives 77.75 years.

You will munch through 12 shopping carts of candy bars in your lifetime. 

You will drink an average of 43,371 cans of soda over a lifetime.  On page 20 there’s a great photo to illustrate this fact.

It takes one half pint of crude oil to make the plastic lining for a disposable diaper, thus 1,898 pints are used per baby.

You will spend $52,972 in clothing and you will toss out 68 pounds of clothes.

This is a great book to have in the classroom, school library and home.  I see the possibilities for further science experiments. It is sure to interest readers al around.

Nonfiction Monday Round-up is at Chapter Book of the Day by Anastasia Suen.  Thanks!

Happy Reading.


Nonfiction Monday: Silk and Venom: Searching for a Dangerous Spider

I am on vacation and it ends today as I travel back home.  While on my trip, I have enjoyed reading Silk and Venom: Searching for a Dangerous Spider by Kathryn Lasky, photographs by Christopher G. Knight.  It’s a fresh look at spiders for 2011.

I love spiders. I am intrigued by them. So this book had me at its title.  The text is written in such a way tha Lasky pulls readers in on her journey. Both she and Knight were invited to join Greta Binford, a arachnologist and professor at Lewis and Clark College, Portland, Oregon (my ala mater) to go with her to search for the Loxosceles tanio in the Dominica Republic.

The book’s photographs is rich and detailed.  There is a vast array of spiders that I had not heard of before.  For example, have you every seen a close up of the spiny orb weaver?  It looks like an alien spaceship. 

Greta is a fascinating scientist. Lasky has written and engaging and informative text for any young aspiring arachnologist.   Readers learn of the process she uses to capture the spiders, her questions about how and when the Loxosceles made it to the North American continent. The end material includes  a pictorial glossary of spiders, websites to check out and index.



The 5th Annual Kidlit Con Blogging Conference registration is now open.  You can find details HERE. I will do a post some time this week.

Nonfiction Monday is at proseandkahn.  Head over there to see what others are saying about great nonfiction books.

From the road,



Nonfiction Monday: I Like Vegetables

In honor of my great-nephew who turned one on July 1, I am featuring part of his birthday present.  It’s a board book on vegetables by Lorena Siminovich, I Like Vegetables.

My niece, great-nephew, my husband and I went to a local produce farm on Friday.  My niece needed food for today’s birthday celebration.  As she said, “the processed food at birthday parties must stop somewhere.”  She’s a smart woman.

Later in the day, I found Siminovich’s concept board book on opposites with vegetables.  It’s bold and colorful illustrations will capture the 0ne to three set.  An added feature is its different textures. For example, the peas have cut outs with a green satiny fabric to represent them.  Peas generally feel smooth. On the other hand, the carrots have bumpiness to them.

Learning about carrots, peas, corn, and pumpkins along with the concepts of  short, tall, inside, outside, tall, short, and big, small is sure to be great fun with small ones.  I think my great-nephew will agree.  I will know after the party today.

Bookmuse is hosting Nonfiction Monday.  I am hoping to post next week as well as I am travelling.  Hence the spotty blog posts.

Happy Reading.