Thursday, May 28, 2015

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Young Readers Edition

The story of William Kamkwamba is so inspiring that three books have been written to tell it. I listened to the audio book version of the 305-page, young reader's edition. 

My review of The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Young Readers Edition
written for AudioFile Magazine, is linked here. 


I cannot recommend this one enough.  I hope you have time to read at least one version of this inspiring true story of a teenager who created electricity for his impoverished, starving village in Malawi with nothing more than garbage, an elementary education, an old borrowed Physics book (in a language that he did not speak or read!), and a will to make things better!
  1. The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Creating Currents of Electricity and Hope by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer (William Morrow, 2009)
  2. The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Picture Book Edition by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer (Dial, 2012)
  3. The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Young Readers Edition by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer (Penguin, 2015)

Here are William Kamkwamba's two TED Talks.  They're short and well worth a listen.
[http://www.ted.com/talks/william_kamkwamba_on_building_a_windmill?language=en]


[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6QkNxt7MpWM]

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Feet, Go to Sleep - a review

Welcome to the final stop on the Barbara Bottner blog tour for her latest book, 
Feet, Go to Sleep, illustrated by Maggie Smith and published by Alfred A. Knopf.


Fiona has spent the day at the beach and now it's time for bed.
"Time to say good night," said Mama.
"I'm not ready!" said Fiona.
"You've had a long day.  You must be tired, from your head to your toes," said Mama.
"Maybe just a little tired...."

This may be a bedtime story, but Maggie Smith's bright illustrations are richly colored and full of life. 
"Toes, go to sleep!" said Fiona.
Toes were for gripping flip-flops on the way to the beach.
Toes were easy.  They went right to sleep."

The illustrations feature bright and bold depictions of Fiona's earlier daytime activities, while the pajama clad Fiona is contrasted in a smaller inset box, growing wearier with each page until she is finally and peacefully asleep against a backdrop of evening blue.  Feet, Go to Sleep is an attractive combination of enjoyable and practical.

Although I was traveling, and did not have time to submit interview questions to author Barbara Bottner, she was kind enough to answer one question for me.  As a Jersey Shore gal, I was curious if Feet, Go to Sleep is based on any particular beach - perhaps one of Ms. Bottner's favorites. Bottner enjoyed frequenting Jones Beach on Long Island as a teenager, however, the location of Fiona's activities are not based on any specific beach, In fact, the book's location was added after the first draft. I have actually (succesfully) used the relaxation technique in Feet, Go to Sleep many times, although I've never needed it after a day at the beach. For me, a day at the beach is a relaxation technique in itself.  Ah, that salt air!

Previous stops on the blog tour include:
Feet, Go to Sleep by Barbara Bottner
Blog Tour Schedule



My copy of Feet, Go to Sleep was provided by the publisher.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Monday Morning Miscellany v.9

I've been reading (and writing!), but no reviews for you today, just a few announcements:

Today is the start of  Scholastic’s #IReadYA week - a celebration of all things YA.  In support of this week, Scholastic will be holding daily challenges beginning today and running through Friday the 22nd. By participating in the challenges, you earn the chance to win #IReadYA prizes including: #IReadYA tote bags, tumblers and free YA books!


The fun daily challenges range from describing a YA book only using words that start with the same letter (e.g. Harry helps Hogwarts, hefting horcruxes), to sharing YA reaction videos/memes.


Some YA authors will also be participating with impromptu Twitter chats, Tumblr posts and more.

To become a part of #IReadYA week and take part in the daily challenges, click here:
Scholastic’s #IReadYA Week 

And on the topic of YA books, I attended a Penguin Random House Book Buzz event on Friday. Library of Souls, the final book in the Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children series will be coming out in September.  The final cover will be revealed this month.  And coming next spring, is Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiars, the Tim Burton movie based on the first book in the series.


And finally, today, as it is every Monday, you can visit the Nonfiction Monday blog to see what's new in nonfiction for kids and teens.