Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Quote of the Day-----Goodreads

Funny, when you finally faced reality, it was amazing how clearly you could see things.
Mary Higgins Clark
December 24, 1929: Happy 84th birthday, Mary Higgins Clark! The mystery and suspense writer has penned almost 50 books, but she has other interests as well. Clark is a part owner of the New Jersey Nets and recently purchased a seat on the Chicago Board Options Exchange.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Quote of the Day----Goodreads

Tell me a story of deep delight.
Robert Penn Warren
December 20, 1985: Ronald Reagan signed legislation that created title of Poet Laureate, 28 years ago today. The first appointee was Robert Penn Warren, who is now remembered for his novel, All the King's Men.

This is a great photo of our first Poet Laureate!  Deep in his work.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

I am Malala review

If you don't know who Malala is, then you have probably been living under a rock.

Malala, with the assistance of Christina Lamb, has written a very thoughtful story, regarding her country, her family and the attempt on her life. With clarity, she guides one through the establishment of her country, offers insights to her Muslim beliefs, her quest that all girls in Pakistan should be able to attend school, and how she became the remarkable young woman she is today.

This book Should Be Required Reading in every public and private school in the United States, to bring home the fact that education is a precious thing that too many of today's young people scoff at or take for granted.

Every Woman in the United States should read this book, to understand how fortunate they are to have been born an American, with Rights guaranteed by our Constitution, as those who have become naturalized citizens of the United States already know how fortunate they are.

Malala wishes three things, Peace for all, Education for all, and to return to her homeland.
May her wishes come true

You have to read this one!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Qoute of the Day-----Goodreads

If you wish to view Marilynne Robinson's photo, please go to Goggle images.  I met Marilynne many years ago, through my best friend Sally.  Today is Marilynne's birthday --- Happy Birthday

This is an interesting planet. It deserves all the attention you can give it.
Marilynne Robinson
November 26, 1943: Happy 70th birthday, Marilynne Robinson! In a 33 year career, the Idaho native has written three celebrated novels—Housekeeping, Gilead, and Home—all luminous works marked by simplicity and wonder.

I always felt that Marilynne's Housekeeping  should have won the Pulitzer. It is one of my favorites.

Currently reading Nancy Mitford's Highland Fling.
Happy Reading.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Quote of the Day----Goodreads

What a pity every child couldn't learn to read under a willow tree...
Elizabeth George Speare
November 21, 1908: American children's book writer Elizabeth George Speare was born in Massachusetts, 105 years ago today. Most of her historical novels, like The Witch of Blackbird Pond, are set in her native New England.

What a beautiful thought......

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Quote of the Day----Goodreads

Give the children love, more love and still more love – and the common sense will come by itself.
Astrid Lindgren
November 14, 1907: Delightfully rude redhead Pippi Longstocking was the creation of Swedish writer Astrid Lindgren, but it was her seven-year-old daughter who came up with that perfect name. Lindgren was born in Småland, 106 years ago today.

It is NOT hard to give children love.  Read stories to them every day, listen to their questions, hold them in your arms, and always tell them you love them.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Quote of the Day----Goodreads

We are stardust, we are golden and we've got to get ourselves back to the garden.
Joni Mitchell
November 7, 1943: Happy 70th birthday, Joni Mitchell! The Canadian singer songwriter had polio as a child—the illness weakened her left hand, which made many traditional guitar fingerings difficult to execute. It led Mitchell to develop her own signature tunings.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Quote of the Day----Goodreads

I read so I can live more than one life in more than one place.
Anne Tyler
October 25, 1941: Happy 72nd birthday, Anne Tyler! The Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist grew up in a Quaker community. She is often cited by fellow novelists as a favorite, with admirers as different as Eudora Welty and Nick Hornby.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

We recently watched this documentary.  I remember going to the Wall, once in the dead of a hot July night, once again several years later on a hot August day, the quiet "peace" of this memorial was so overwhelming.  When I found the two names of those I looked for, it was such a blinding pain, yet a relief to have been able to see that they were remembered.
Thank you Maya for the beauty of the Wall.

Beyond the Wall, this documentary shows many of her other works.  It was very interesting to watch her evolve.

Hope you will consider this one.

Currently reading  Anonymous Sources by Mary Kelly, a real page turner!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Quote of the Day-----Goodreads

The pleasure of all reading is doubled when one lives with another who shares the same books.
Katherine Mansfield
October 14, 1888: Short story writer Katherine Mansfield lived a brief and rebellious life, full of affairs with both men and women. She left her native New Zealand in part due to disgust over the treatment of the Maori people and lived a bohemian life in London before dying of tuberculosis at 34.

Currently reading  "The Last Dog on the Hill"

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Quote of the Day-----Goodreads

A well-composed book is a magic carpet on which we are wafted to a world that we cannot enter in any other way.
Caroline Gordon
October 6, 1895: Although Caroline Gordon's novels are no longer widely read, in her day she was a prominent literary figure who was friends with writers like Flannery O'Connor, Ernest Hemingway, and F. Scott Fitzgerald. She was born 118 years ago today.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

"Kandahar" a fillm by Mohsen Makhmalbaf

We recently viewed this film.  It will tug at your heart, women in other parts of the world really don't know what freedom is about.
Visually this is stunning.

"Kingdom" series starring Stephen Fry

Discovered this series, it is a delight. 

Friday, September 13, 2013

Quote of the Day-----Goodreads

Dare to be strong and courageous. That is the road. Venture anything.
Sherwood Anderson
September 13, 1876: Sherwood Anderson spent his early career in the mail-order business but after a mental breakdown he left his job (and family) to become a writer. Winesburg, Ohio, his most popular book, is a short story cycle based on his hometown of Clyde, Ohio. He was born 137 years ago today

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Quote of the Day-----Goodreads

She had always wanted words, she loved them; grew up on them. Words gave her clarity, brought reason, shape.
Michael Ondaatje
September 12, 1943: Happy birthday, Michael Ondaatje! Born in Sri Lanka of Dutch and Indian parents, the novelist eventually became a Canadian citizen. He is best known for The English Patient, which became an Oscar-winning film. Ondaatje turns 70 today.

Words, they can make you happy, they can make you sad, once spoken they can never be taken back.  Be careful to always speak with love and grace, even when you are angry or sad.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

9-11 Never to Forget

Today is a day that will be etched in the hearts of many.
Don't let them be forgotten.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Soldier Dog a book by Sam Angus

World War I, a time when mankind turned against itself, use of chemical weapons (brings to mind the current situation in Syria) was first introduced in "modern" warfare.

Stanley, a 13 year old, watches as his older brother leaves for France and combat. Stanley and his father have a broken relationship, over dogs that Stanley had taken care of and grown to love, when he awakes one morning Stanley's father and the dogs are no longer on the farm.
Stanley makes the decision that will change his life forever, he leaves home to enlist in the army. Once in the army, he is assigned to the experimental War Dog School, and given a Great Dane, Bones, to train. And so starts Stanley's war time experience.

In a special afterword, the author has included "historical photographs of World War I messenger dogs".

Thursday, September 5, 2013

"The Way" a film

"The Way"  a film by Emillo Estevez  starring Martin Sheen, and Yorick van Wageningen (photo above)

Shot in France and Spain, about the "El Camino de Santiago" pilgrimage.

The movie is beautifully filmed, with wonderful music.

The reason I have posted Yorick's photo, he was absolutely wonderful in his role.  Having a Dutch brother-in-law, and knowing all of his family members, I so enjoyed the in's and out's of his character's humor.

Made me want to do the pilgrimage.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Quote of the Day-----Goodreads

No book can be appreciated until it has been slept with and dreamed over.
Eugene Field
September 2, 1850: American poet and humorist Eugene Field wrote popular nursery rhymes like "Little Boy Blue" as well as a newspaper column. He was born in St. Louis, Missouri, 163 years ago today.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Quote of the Day-----Goodreads

Reading furnishes the mind only with materials of knowledge; it is thinking that makes what we read ours.
John Locke
August 29, 1632: British writer John Locke was a prominent Enlightenment-era philosopher whose theories strongly influenced the Declaration of Independence. He was born 381 years ago today.

So, happy reading and thinking.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Enemy at the Door

Enemy at the Door, a series from Great Britian, revolves around the German occupation of the Channel Islands, particularly the island of Guernsey.

We have just finished Series 2.

British residents of the island are forced to surrender their homes to the German forces, however, they don't have to like it.  This series paints a picture of what it would be like to live under the rule of those one neither respects nor likes. 

We have enjoyed watching this series more than others.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Rescue of Belle and Sundance

Mahatma Gandhi said
"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated."

This story involves two abandoned horses, an errant lawyer (Frank Mackay) and the community of McBride, British Columbia.

Belle and Sundance were left in the Canadian Rockies by Frank MacKay, who had no experience leading pack horses in the wilderness. He figured, wrongly, that they would find their way out of the wilderness back to "civilization". Several folks, over a period of time, had seen these horses wandering around in the alpine area of Mount Renshaw, at the first sightings there was plenty for them to forage for food, as winter drew near, still more sightings - folks would call the RCMP or SPCA, and yet no one made any attempt to get them out of the area, even the lawyer who owned them contacted the authorities, promising to get them (yeah, right!). But when they were still spotted after the snows came to the Rockies, things took on a different perspective. Snowmobile season was fast approaching, and snowmobilers started reported seeing the pair - looking pretty awful.

The community of McBride is made up of folks that depend upon each other, folks born and bred to live in a harsh northern climate, people who farm, breed horses and take care of them, so when Birgit and her friends started hearing of the condition of the two horses, and with the temperature dropping steadily, they decided to take action.

It was just before Christmas 2008 when the action went into full swing.
Digging a trench in snow, in a wilderness area to bring down to pack horses, many folks thought it better to dispatch the horses rather than save them. However, Birgit and community stuck together.

Possilby you might not want to read this story, however, this is a book of determination, strength of character, hope and love. The outcome is "happy".

Please consider this one if you are a supporter of animal rights.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Quote of the Day---Goodreads

He made me think of all the books I hadn't read, and all the ones I'd read but hadn't fully understood.
Tom Perrotta
August 13, 1961: Happy birthday, Tom Perrotta! The novelist couldn't get his book, Election, published until it was made into an Oscar-winning film. He turns 52 today

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Quote of the Day-----Goodreads

Progress is man's ability to complicate simplicity.
Thor Heyerdahl
August 7, 1947: Norwegian explorer Thor Heyerdahl set sail on a primitive boat, the Kon-Tiki, to test his theory that the Polynesian islands were originally settled by South Americans. It crashed on a reef in the South Pacific 66 years ago today, but he survived and wrote a best seller about the experience, The Voyage of the Kon-Tiki.

Isn't that the truth? 

Monday, August 5, 2013

Quote of the Day-----Goodreads

Words dazzle and deceive because they are mimed by the face. But black words on a white page are the soul laid bare.
Guy de Maupassant
August 5, 1850: French author Guy de Maupassant is best known for short stories like The Necklace, which are often marked by a cruel twist of fate. He was born in France, 163 years ago today.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

We just finished watching this documentary.

Filmed by Emad Burnat and Guy Davidi.

Emad films the non-violent resistance put up by the villagers of his home of Bil'in, a West Bank village being threatened by encroaching Israeli settlements.  Emad bought his first camera in 2005 to record the birth of his youngest son, Gibrill. 

Through the eyes of Emad we watch as the Israelis destroy the olive trees of the villagers, to build the settlement, and destroying the countryside as well.  One by one the cameras are "destroyed" during the five years of filming.

We watched in utmost horror as the Palestinians would march, without weapons of any kind, only to be shot at by the Israeli forces, or had stun grenades thrown at them.  Children, women, old men, joined the protestors and still would be shot at.

In horror, we watched the death of one of the village's most beloved men. 

Emad is injured during the shooting of one segment, and is wounded once again at the end.

If you watch this, be prepared to have your emotions torn apart by what you see. 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Quote of the Day-----Goodreads

The world is a story we tell ourselves about the world.
Vikram Chandra
July 23, 1961: Happy birthday, Vikram Chandra! Born in New Delhi but educated in America, the novelist writes about being suspended between cultures. He turns 52 today.

Started reading "Children of the Jacaranda Tree"   very brutal, writing is excellent, set in Iran after the revolution, had to put it down for a bit, so switched to one of my favorites "Inkheart" .

Friday, July 19, 2013

Quote of the Day----Goodreads

Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, but only saps today of its strength.
A.J. Cronin
July 19, 1896: Scottish writer A.J. Cronin was a practicing doctor when he published his first novel, Hatter's Castle. His later work, The Stars Look Down, was an inspiration for the film Billy Elliot. He was born 117 years ago today.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Quote of the Day------Goodreads

A smile is a curve that sets everything straight.
Phyllis Diller
July 17, 1917: Comedian Phyllis Diller's iconic onstage persona of a nutty housewife with a long cigarette holder took her everywhere from USO tours in Vietnam to Broadway. She was born 96 years ago today.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Quote of the Day-----Goodreads

Learn what is to be taken seriously and laugh at the rest.
Hermann Hesse
July 2, 1877: Nobel Prize-winning German novelist Hermann Hesse's books—particularly Siddhartha and Steppenwolf—helped popularize Eastern philosophy with Western audiences. He was born to missionary parents, 136 years ago today

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Quote of the Day----Goodreads

may you kiss
the wind then turn from it
certain that it will
love your back

Lucille Clifton
June 27, 1936: Celebrated poet and children's book writer Lucille Clifton was born in upstate New York, 77 years ago today.

Today would be a good day to read some poetry.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Quote of the Day----Goodreads

I bid the chords sweet music make,
And all must follow in my wake.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
June 26, 1284: So many nursery tales are based in reality; 729 years ago today, a piper may have lured 130 children from the village of Hamelin, giving rise to the Pied Piper story. It later inspired a poem by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Quote of the Day---Goodreads

The earth was overwhelmed with beauty and indifferent to it, and I went with a heart ready to crack for its unbearable loveliness.
Josephine Winslow Johnson
June 20, 1910: Poet and novelist Josephine Winslow Johnson made a literary splash by winning the Pulitzer for her first novel, Now in November, published when she was just 24. She was born in Kirkwood, Missouri, 103 years ago today.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand

This is just one of those "comfort" books that can be re-read countless times, I am on my fourth reading (second of this year).  Each time I read it, I experience a new insight into the Major, and his "greedy" son Roger.  Mrs. Ali is such a delight.

Thought for the Day

The Best Relationships are with people who enter your life by accident, but stay on purpose.

Quote of the Day-----Goodreads

Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.
Benjamin Franklin
June 15, 1752: With a kite, a key, and a cooperative bolt of lightning, American scientist and statesman Benjamin Franklin proved his theory that lightning is a form of electricity. The experiment took place 261 years ago today.

Read a good book.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Thought for the day

Thought for the day

The Most memorable people in Your Life will be the Ones Who Loved You when you weren't very Lovable.

That is certainly true of my best friend.

Read a good book!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Thought for the Day

Thought for the day   

If you are always being judged by someone, it does not define "who you are", It defines "Who They Are."

You are special.

Read a good book

Monday, June 10, 2013

Quote of the DAy-------Goodreads

A book is really like a lover. It arranges itself in your life in a way that is beautiful.
Maurice Sendak
June 10, 1928: Oh Maurice Sendak, we love you so! The prickly, big-hearted children's book writer was born 85 years ago today in Brooklyn, New York. The monsters in his classic, Where the Wild Things Are, were inspired by his immigrant family.

Some authors leave us much too soon, however, soon they leave us, their wonderful work stays with us forever.

Read a good Children's book, you won't be disappointed!

Friday, June 7, 2013

Set in modern day Portland, OR, there is an area known as "I.W." otherwise known as the "Impassable Wilderness", and as our journey begins, we know that no one that has ever ventured into the "I.W." has ever ventured out and told about it.

Prue McKeel is just an ordinary kid, or so she thinks at the onset, having taken her baby brother to a local park one day, she witnesses a "murder of crows" abduct him, and carry him off towards the forest of the "I.W.", naturally, she realizes that since he was in her custody, it is her responsibility to return him safe and sound to his family. So, Prue starts a journey to the "I.W.", with schoolmate Curtis, who has decided on his own to follow her. Once across the bridge, wild and weird events take hold of them, they become separated, and "fall" in with opposing factions. Both are united in finding Prue's baby brother, they just go about it in different ways. This is a place where animals and humans have "equal" footing. Finally, being reunited, they must come to terms with the evil force behind the abduction. Fowl play is afoot.

Remarkable pen and ink drawings, and lovely color illustrations throughout the book.
Husband and wife team live in Portland, OR, so the story holds forth with much truth about the area.

This is the first book in the series then you have

This is what I just finished.  Once again the pen and ink drawings and the color illustrations throughout the book are just delightful, and boy what a cliff hanger ending.......

Even if you are an adult, these books are well worth the time, children's authors are so much more thoughtful in bringing forth their characters.

Give them a shot.

Quote of the Da-----Goodreads

I read a book one day and my whole life was changed.
Orhan Pamuk
June 7, 1952: Happy birthday, Orhan Pamuk! The Nobel Prize-winning Turkish writer was born in Istanbul 61 years ago today.

Happy reading!

I just finished a children's book  "Under Wildwood" set in the area of Portland, OR.  Then I needed to read something adult, I just couldn't settle on anything "new" at hand, so I am currently reading for the fourth time (second time this year since January) "Major Pettigrew's Last Stand".  I reallly do love this book - the story and the writing.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

If books could have more, give more, be more, show more, they would still need readers who bring to them sound and smell and light and all the rest that can’t be in books.
The book needs you.
Gary Paulsen
May 17, 1939: Happy birthday, Gary Paulsen! It's no wonder that he writes adventure novels like Hatchet—he's raced in the Iditarod, lives part-time on a boat, and, at 14, ran away to join a carnival.

Although Gary Paulsen is most "famous" for his book Hatchet
I enjoyed Harris and Me much more.  Harris is a young farm boy, "Me" is his cousin.  Me is probably based on childhood experiences of Gary.  Harris is constantly getting "me" in all types of trouble around the farm.  Set in rural Minnesota during WWII.  Over the years, I have suggested this title to children and adults - I have never had someone return it who didn't enjoy the antics of Harris, and sympathize with "me".  Laugh out loud funny.
Newer release has a different cover, I have always liked this cover as it was done by one of my favorite cover illustrators, Wendell Minor.

Hope you will consider this one, if you need a good laugh.

Just finished "Reckless" by Cornelia Funke

Hope you find a good book. 

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Two Italian "flicks"

You have to watch this one first, to get the cast of characters in your mind.
We just watched this one the other evening.  Having watched Italian flicks from a very early age, I rarely thought of them as comedy, however, "The Salt of Life" is that rare bird of an Italian flick.  Since this has subtitles, most of the humor is body languare, facial expressions.  We really enjoyed this one!
Hope you will give them a shot!
Currently reading  Reckless by Cornelia Funke

Monday, May 6, 2013

Quote of the Day----Goodreads

There ain't no sin and there ain't no virtue. There's just stuff people do. John Steinbeck
May 6, 1940: John Steinbeck received a Pulitzer Prize for his best-seller, The Grapes of Wrath, 73 years ago today. The title, based on a lyric from "The Battle Hymn of the Republic," was suggested by his wife.

Currently reading  "The Fire Chronicle"

Monday, April 22, 2013

Quote of the Day-----Goodreads

The minute you become conscious that you are doing good, that's the minute you have to stop because from then on it's wrong.
Paula Fox
April 22, 1923: Happy birthday, Paula Fox! The decorated children's book author has enjoyed a resurgence of interest in her adult novels, thanks to Jonathan Franzen's championing of her Desperate Characters. Fox is also the grandmother of musician Courtney Love.

Currently reading  Jon Katz's  Running to the Mountain.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Quote of the Day----Goodreads

We often take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude.
Cynthia Ozick
April 17, 1928: Happy birthday, Cynthia Ozick! A master of fiction and essay, Ozick was born in New York City, 85 years ago today.

Perhaps on this day, several days after the tragic event in Boston, we should all sit quietly for a bit and consider all that we have to be grateful for - family, friends, community and our country - let no one take these things from us.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

"The Lady and the Panda" a book by Vicki Constantine Croke

"China is a country of unforgettable color, and often, quite unbidden, come vivid pictures to my mind--sometimes it is the golden roofs of the Imperial City in Peking, or again it is the yellow corn on the flat-roofed little stone houses in the country of the Tibetan border land" Ruth Harkness

February 19, 1936 William Harvest Harkness, Jr. lay dying in Shanghai, his bohemian, socialite wife, Ruth Harkness was in New York City, totally unaware of what her husband was facing. He had left for China on a quest to bring back a live Panda - at this time in our history folks such as Teddy Roosevelt had journeyed to China to hunt pandas, bringing back only their "trophies" of their hunts - so Harkness' journey was something totally unique at the time.

When Ruth learned of her husband's death, she made the decision to embark on the most unusual journey of her time. Leaving her own career in dress design, she traveled to China on the quest of a lifetime - her's and her husband's.

There are many obstacles in being a woman traveling in China at any given time, during the 1930's obstacles were even greater. Her quest to bring back a live Panda was filled with many up's and down's, the threat of World War II looming, her lack of understanding the culture and language, yet none of these obstacles prevented Ruth Harkness from completing her husband's "appointed" task.

Ruth kept going through all types of conditions, until one day ...............

You will just have to read this one for yourself to find out what happened to her expedition.

Hope you will enjoy this one.
Good reading!