Saturday, March 22, 2014

Books to travel by

We had great success with our recorded books this trip, and I wanted to share a couple with you. The first is The Mouse with the Question Mark Tail by Richard Peck. This is set in the time of Queen Victoria and the mice live in and around Buckingham Palace. J. and I found it entertaining and clever. I think this is one of the few times that I will recommend you find the recording and listen to it. The version we listened to was produced by Listening Library and was read by Russ Bain. J. and I think that one of the reasons we enjoyed the book so much was the excellent way the narrator captured each of the British accents. This is something that would be beyond me if I were to read it out loud and it certainly added to our enjoyment of the book. If you are an Anglophile at all, you will appreciate the humor. (The link is for the actual book, I couldn't find the recording on Amazon, so ask your library for it.)

The second book is Whittington by Alan Armstrong. This is a story within a story, the first being a tale of various cast-off animals who live together in a barn and the children who come to visit them, the second is a retelling of Dick Whittington and his Cat. While the outer story was mildly interesting (the animals try to help the boy who comes to visit learn to read), it is the inner story of Dick Whittington which we really enjoyed. Happily, it takes up the better portion of the book. This would be an interesting addition to studying the middle ages as the author does a great job of describing life during that time. I'm still not so sure about the author's take on more modern problems, but they were brief enough to be ignored.

The last books I want to tell you about, we didn't actually listen to, but A. and P. have spent the past three days reading them and highly recommend them. The first, Boston Jane: An Adventure by Jennifer L. Holm, is a book that P. picked-up in the free book bin at the very nice visitor center in Colorado. P. then proceeded to read the entire book before we reached Iowa and A. then took it and read it as well. One of the first things they did when we arrived home was to head to the library and find the other two books in the series, Boston Jane: Wilderness Days and Boston Jane: The Claim. They have both since finished all three books and have raved about them ever since. My girls read a lot of books, but it is infrequent that they both find books that they love so much they talk endlessly about them. I haven't read them, but I trust their judgement and thus share them with you.
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I have fallen in love with a little girl and there's not a thing I can do about it. (Thank you very much, Illinois.) She arrived at New Day Foster Home in China as a barely alive 1 month old. She survived and it turns out she has a complex heart problem, one they tried to repair, but were unable to. Her heart may or may not be able to be repaired here. Either way, she is a cutie and needs a family. She needs a family even if her heart cannot be repaired. She needs to know what it is to be loved by a mommy and daddy. She needs to belong to a family. Please click on the link and read about little Lena. Pray for her. Pray that her family finds her. You might also pray that this happens soon, because I will badger you about her until that happens.

Love Grows Here: The New Day Foster Home Blog: Advocacy: For Lena

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