Wednesday, January 23, 2008

The Book Thief - Markus Zusak

The Book Thief (Readers Circle)
That is my favorite YA book this year. I am "hand-selling" this to my 8th grade students. They are studying the Holocaust right now. Markus Zusak approaches the topic from a different viewpoint. He introduces you to the people who were left behind, the people who had to leave, people who didn't agree but didn't have a choice, people who tried to do the right thing and what that cost them and their families. He does all of that, and more, with compassion. The compassion comes in the form of Death, who narrates the story. He has a sense of humor and a great big heart. It is truly a great book. I've only physically read it once, but I listen to the audio over and over. The narrator hits the exact tone that I imagined! Well worth reading. Don't let the size put you off. It's actually a fast read. Enjoy!

Also posted on: Goodreads, LibraryThing

Monday, January 21, 2008

Lack of Posting

I am pretty busy with classes and work stuff lately. Not a lot of time to read or post, except what's required! I need to learn to say no. I hope to get back on track soon!

I did just finish reading The Opposite of Invisible by Liz Gallagher (waiting for Jess at the ortho). That book is full of awesome. As soon as I get the chance, I want to re-read it! And, of course, write about it. Along with all the other reviews I would like to do.'s hard.

30 Day Challenge Check In

Not a great week on the workout front. I worked out for 1 day. It has been a stress-filled busy week...all the more reason to work out, of course. But I did today and I made a new plan and even put it in my plan book so I think this will work out. My new plan is to work out two days aerobics, one day of strength, two days of aerobics, one day of strength, and then one day off. I can do that. The strength day will feel like a break. Yeah, that's a good plan.

Monday, January 14, 2008

30 Day Challenge Check In

All right, week 2! Well I didn't make six workouts but I made 4. I doubled from last week. I got my new tapes from Collage Video. So much fun and pain! This week I will incorporate a dance video. I've only lost 3 pounds so far but I've gained muscles! I can see them! We are only using the resistance band and 3-pound dumb-bells (or at least that's all I'm using!). I've eaten more fruit this week. Ok, gotta get some sleep.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

50 Book Challenge

My "Latest Books I've Read" updates will cease for awhile, so that I can work on my 50 Book Challenge. As I read each book, I will put it on my list to the right. I wonder how many books I will read this year? How many have you read so far? Goodreads has a group called 50 Books 2008 if you want to keep track there.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Smiles to Go - Jerry Spinelli

I just started Smiles to Go by Jerry Spinelli. It is phenomenol. It's all I can do to put it away while I do my homework. Will Tuppence is afraid of everything and his fear...well it keeps him from everything. Here are a few lines from the book:

And smiles to go before I weep. the edge of self-control and down the slippery slope of my own words. can't forgive unless you first give a crap. on wheels...(describing a laugh)
Chapter PD165

It's a great story with great words. Will thinks of his epithet:

Here Lies Will Tuppence - He Was Afraid

He also thinks of his best freind's dad's epiteph. He's a man who is always busy:

Here Lies Mario Bontempo - For the Moment.

Expect a full review by week's end.

I'm a Winner! Again!

I just won a Chronicle's of Narnia pop-up book from Anne at Book Buds Kidlit Reviews as part of her Cybils awareness campaign.

I am writing all of the YA short list books in my journal, so that I can read them before the year is over. If I haven't already. I will then be able to use some of them for next year's YA book club! How sweet is that?

30 Day Challenge Check In

Today is the first check-in day for HipWriterMama's 30-day Challenge. I've worked out 3 of the last 5 days. My goal is at least 6 days a week. I've been doing Leslie Sansone's Kick/Walk tape and I just ordered myself some new tapes from Collage Video. I will let you know how they are. I've also found myself drinking more water, a great side habit! I feel great.

I've been entering my workouts at iVillage's Healthy Living site. It's nice to see that even a little bit helps. I hope it will serve to keep me motivated throughout this year.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

2 out of 3 ain't bad...

I worked out today! That's twice since I set my goal on Wednesday with HipWriterMama. I'm doing the 30-day Challenge. I always feel great when I work out, like I can conquer the world. Why is it so hard to do then? I don't know, but I'm going to do this. I will make it!

Soon my Rockstar dreams will come true! I mean my bookstore owner dreams! Same difference!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

I'm a Winner!

First - chocolates from Robin Brande
Then - opportunities to read and review Smiles to Go by Jerry Spinelli and Bird Lake Moon by Kevin Henkes! Perfect for middle schoolers!

Woo Hoo and it's only January 3rd!

Old Blog, New Year

I used to have a blog called Read.Think.Learn. I think, as part of the new me, I want to go back to doing the reviews for my students. This is my second year as a librarian and now I have students in middle and high school as well as some authors I've met. I think it's time. I will be careful though. I burned out because you couldn't update at school and I was super busy at home. I'm still super busy, taking classes at IUPUI, single mom-ming it, hanging out with my homies, running a couple of school book clubs, you know the drill. I'm going to start off small, just with the books I read for book clubs, including our ARYA book club (Adults Reading Young Adult books) which is just me and some teachers finding a reason to get together once a month!!

Ok, that's what I'll do. Right now I'm reading: Cry of the Icemark by Stuart Hill, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak, and Teach Me by RA Nelson. Those are the book club books du jour. For fun I'm reading: Two-Way Street by Lauren Barnholdt.

I also have a Facebook and Myspace account. As well as GoodReads and LibraryThing. I need to consolidate!

30 Day Challenge

I did it! I joined HipWriterMama's 30-Day Challenge. I am on my way. I got up, thought about why I was getting up an hour early - and I actually worked out! This year I want to get back to working on my dream of owning a bookstore. I became a middle school Librarian so that I could determine if I enjoyed working with this age group and reading YA books, and well, YES I DO. As a matter of fact, I believe I want to do a bookstore that specializes in YA books and products. Any way...I decided to break things down and start pulling myself together and getting back on track. First step...Take care of myself better. I'm not getting any younger, although I probably act that way! Being healthy and in good shape will give me the stamina needed to work 20 hour days.

So for the next 30 days, I want to build the habit of working out into my schedule. Look for updates here and watch me make my dreams come true!

I need to send a shout-out to Robin Brande who had a link to HipWriterMama's blog (how can you NOT click on a link by someone called HipWriterMama?). Thanks for the chocolates Robin and keep writing!


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