A Long Way Home

Have you ever heard a story that seems impossible to be true yet is? A Long Way Home is such a story. This extraordinary memoir by Saroo Brierley tells the journey of being a poor five-year-old Indian boy who becomes separated from his brother at a train station at night. Scared, he jumps on the next train and arrives alone in Calcutta where he lives on the streets for several weeks. He miraculously finds his way to an adoption agency where he is adopted by a loving family in Australia. That in itself is amazing but then, after 25 years, he goes in search of his family back in India with the aid of Google Earth. A Hindu saying Saroo mentions in the book highlights much of his journey: “Everything is written.” A movie is currently in the works based on this book. You will finish this book with great respect for the destiny of all our lives.

2015 Pulitzer Prize Winners

The 2015 Pulitzer Prize winners in the category of books were announced early this afternoon. The winning titles for fiction and general nonfiction are listed below.

Fiction

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

General Nonfiction

The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History by Elizabeth Kolbert

April is National Poetry Month

 

 

April is National Poetry Month – another great reason to get your children reading. Some ways to encourage your children to start enjoying poetry are:

Hand your kids one poetry book this month.  A Pizza the Size of the Sun by Jack Prelutsky and Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein are perennial favorites

Check out novels in verse.  The National Book Award winning memoir, Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson and Love That Dog by Sharon Creech are two fine examples.

Encourage your children to write their own poems.  Children usually enjoy writing haikus, 3 lines that are 5 syllables, 7 syllables and 5 syllables respectively.

And, of course, take your kids to the library and let them choose their own poetry book to take home!

Large Print Books

Did you know we have an extensive collection of large print books?  Currently, we have some great new releases including, Saving Grace by Jane Green, The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins and (on April 21) Memory Man by David Baldacci.  Next time you’re in the library take a moment to browse the large print collection located near the new releases.

Gardening…simply

Spring is trying hard to make a presence this week and the warmish weather has got me thinking of gardening.  This year my husband and I are planning on building a raised bed garden.  Grow All You Can Eat in 3 Square Feet, a Dorling Kindersley book, has given us endless inspiration.  Even though we plan on having a bigger garden than 3 square feet, this book gives practical tips on how to grow a variety of vegetables in wide-ranging spaces and containers.  Deciding what to grow, being space efficient, plant know-how, small space projects and growing crops in small yards are all discussed.  Even if you don’t wish to plant a proper garden this year you can simply plant some basil in a container and enjoy and make fresh pesto all summer long.  The warm days can’t come soon enough!

gardening

More Snow…

More snow is forecasted for tonight and Thursday even though most of us are dreaming of springtime.  To celebrate the last snowfalls (I’m being very optimistic) it might be fun to read snow-themed books to your children.  Below you will find several to enjoy.

Blizzard by John Rocco
First Snow by Peter McCarty
Snow by Uri Shulevitz
Katy and the Big Snow by Virginia Lee Burton
Tracks in the Snow by Wong Herbert Yee

Snow-Themed Novels

For those of you who love the snow and are still not satisfied by the real stuff outside your door (snow is falling as I write this), you may want to explore the snow-themed novels listed below.  But hurry – spring is but a month away!

The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey
Smilla’s Sense of Snow by Peter Hoeg
The Ice Storm by Rick Moody
The Snowman by Jo Nespo
The Secret History by Donna Tartt

 

 

Wanderlust

To satisfy a bit of wanderlust we all tend to have this time of year, take a look at Budget Travel’s list of greatest travel literature.  This group of books, both fiction and nonfiction, contains interesting and diverse picks.  Happy travels!

FICTION

On the Road by Jack Kerouac

The Sheltering Sky by Paul Bowles

The Beach by Alex Garland

Daughter of Fortune by Isabel Allende

White Teeth by Zadie Smith

A Passage to India by E.M. Forster

The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith

Open City by Teju Cole

The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova

Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell

The Plumed Serpent by D.H. Lawrence

Brooklyn by Colm Toibin

The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway

NONFICTION

In a Sunburned Country by Bill Bryson

Video Night in Kathmandu by Pico Iyer

Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer

Travels With Charley by John Steinbeck

Desert Solitaire by Edward Abbey

Wrong About Japan by Peter Carey

Confederates in the Attic by Tony Horwitz

Out of Africa and Shadows on the Grass by Isak Dinesen

The Snow Leopard by Peter Matthiessen

The Great Railway Bazaar by Paul Theroux

In Patagonia by Bruce Chatwin

Great Plains by Ian Frazier

Valentine’s Day

pride and prejudice

In honor of Valentine’s Day, it’s a nice idea to read a book about love.  For me, nothing captures the stirrings of love and hopefulness like Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen.    It’s a classic worth rereading and a must to read at least once.