Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Little Free Library Adventures #10

A couple of weeks ago, my husband and I decided to take a trip to Northern California for our one year wedding anniversary. During our trip, we encountered a few Little Free Libraries (LFL). Here are some from the various places we were at:

San Gregorio(ish)

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Audiobook Review: Esperanza Rising by Pam Munoz Ryan

Read by Trini Alvarado
Duration: 4 hours 43 minutes
Esperanza Ortega possesses all the treasures a young girl could want: fancy dresses; a beautiful home filled with servants in the bountiful region of Aguascalientes, Mexico; and the promise of one day rising to Mama’s position and presiding over all of El Rancho de las Rosas.

But a sudden tragedy shatters that dream, forcing Esperanza and Mama to flee to California and settle in a Mexican farm labor camp.There they confront the challenges of hard work, acceptance by their own people, and economic difficulties brought on by the Great Depression. When Mama falls ill from Valley Fever and a strike for better working conditions threatens to uproot their new life, Esperanza must relinquish her hold on the past and learn to embrace a future ripe with the riches of family and community.

Friday, June 12, 2020

Review: Wonder by R.J. Palacio


August Pullman was born with a facial difference that, up until now, has prevented him from going to a mainstream school. Starting 5th grade at Beecher Prep, he wants nothing more than to be treated as an ordinary kid—but his new classmates can’t get past Auggie’s extraordinary face. WONDER, now a #1 New York Times bestseller and included on the Texas Bluebonnet Award master list, begins from Auggie’s point of view, but soon switches to include his classmates, his sister, her boyfriend, and others. These perspectives converge in a portrait of one community’s struggle with empathy, compassion, and acceptance.

Thursday, June 11, 2020

His and Her Reviews: 11/22/63 Audiobook

My hubby and I started listening to this together during a trip back in November 2019. The audio was more than 30 hours long so we did not finish it. Unfortunately, we had to wait on a long waiting list to be able to check it out again. Six months later, we finished it.

16436838. sx318Read by Craig Wasson
Duration: 30 hours 40 minutes

On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? Stephen King's heart-stoppingly dramatic new novel is about a man who travels back in time to prevent the JFK assassination. Following his massively successful novel Under the Dome, King sweeps listeners back in time to another moment--a real life moment--when everything went wrong: the JFK assassination. And he introduces listeners to a character who has the power to change the course of history.

Jake Epping is a thirty-five-year-old high school English teacher in Lisbon Falls, Maine, who makes extra money teaching adults in the GED program. He receives an essay from one of the students--a gruesome, harrowing first person story about the night fifty years ago when his father came home and killed his mother, his sister, and his brother with a hammer. Harry escaped with a smashed leg, as evidenced by his crooked walk.

Not much later, Jake's friend Al, who runs the local diner, divulges a secret: his storeroom is a portal to 1958. He enlists Jake on an insane--and insanely impossible--mission to try to prevent the Kennedy assassination. So begins Jake's new life as George Amberson and his new world of Elvis and JFK, of big American cars and sock hops, of a troubled loner named Lee Harvey Oswald and a beautiful high school librarian named Sadie Dunhill, who becomes the love of Jack's life--a life that transgresses all the normal rules of time.

Monday, June 8, 2020

Graphic Novel Review: Ghosts


Catrina and her family are moving to the coast of Northern California because her little sister, Maya, is sick. Cat isn't happy about leaving her friends for Bahía de la Luna, but Maya has cystic fibrosis and will benefit from the cool, salty air that blows in from the sea. As the girls explore their new home, a neighbor lets them in on a secret: There are ghosts in Bahía de la Luna. Maya is determined to meet one, but Cat wants nothing to do with them. As the time of year when ghosts reunite with their loved ones approaches, Cat must figure out how to put aside her fears for her sister's sake - and her own.

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Don't Feel Guilty If You're Not Reading Right Now

Since "Safer at Home" measures started, I made big plans to get back into reading. I even made a nice pile of books that I planned to tackle right away...but...

I barely touched my books these past few days... 

I am remote teaching and I find myself working way more than I was before (and I was already working long hours before). Also, being in front of a screen almost all day really tires out my eyes, which makes reading more difficult. 

So...I was feeling really guilty for not starting on my reading goals. I even cried the other day because I felt like I let myself down. Luckily, I encountered this video on YouTube:

Monday, April 13, 2020

Audiobook: Funny, You Don't Look Autistic

Funny, You Don't Look Autistic: A Comedian's Guide to Life on the Spectrum
Narrated by the author, Michael McCreary
Duration: 3 hours 37 minutes
Slaying autism stereotypes with stand-up, one joke at a time. Like many others on the autism spectrum, 20-something stand-up comic Michael McCreary has been told by more than a few well-meaning folks that he doesn't "look" autistic. But, as he's quick to point out in this memoir, autism "looks" different for just about everyone with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Diagnosed with ASD at age five, McCreary got hit with the performance bug not much later. During a difficult time in junior high, he started journaling, eventually turning his pain e into something empowering--and funny. He scored his first stand-up gig at age 14, and hasn't looked back. An #OwnVoices memoir breaks down what it's like to live with autism for readers on and off the spectrum.