Tuesday, March 31, 2009

More Things on a Stick Thing 27: Twitter

Until recently, I didn't see that Twitter had much to offer. Suddenly, in the last couple of weeks I think it is a great "newsfeed" of truly interesting information. Once I knew there were news sources, and book publishers and authors and game people out there updating their followers I was hooked.

Twitter goes far beyond the stated "what are you doing now" in most cases. It is a fascinating window on the worlds of many people. Each 140 character or less entry is easily read and absorbed on the fly. It isn't like a website or even blog where you would like to be able to spend some time reading the entry--they're here and gone.

Some of the Twitter tools and mashups let you read Twitter from other devices or emails, but since I "Follow" over 300 people I don't really want to have those notes in my emails, or on my phone. I prefer to just take a peek at what is happening when I have a chance.

If there is a particular person who you don't want to miss, just go to their page and all of their updates are there. You can see a person's page and updates without even signing in to Twitter by going to Google and typing their Twitter name and the word Twitter. For instance search "librariandoa Twitter" on Google and all my recent updates are right there. Very quick!

I like finding interesting Tweeters so much I have a mystery authors list here on my blog (it is hard to find people by subject), and I had the idea to interview an author "live" on Twitter and actually did it. It went really well, thanks to the graciousness of the subject, author Bill Crider.

In the couple of weeks I have been really enjoying Twitter, the "too many Tweets whale" has appeared with increasing frequency. Also, there is a new wrinkle wherein Twitter is "stressed out" and you are unable to search for new Tweeters :(

In the meantime, I'll have to comb Twellow, Twitterholic, and wefollow for bright shiny new peeps...or is that Tweeps?

April 1, 2009

Not a joke, I was checking on a new follower to see if we had any common interests and I got this picture!

Suspended for "Strange Activity" "Nothing to see here, move along!" This was not the Christopher Walken Twitter account that was apparently suspended last week for the same thing. Bad, bad Twitterers.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

An Interview with Mystery Author Bill Crider on Twitter

There I was, wondering how interactive Twitter could really be, and I had the idea of doing an author interview on Twitter.

I wrote to the ever humorous, ever low key, ever gracious Bill Crider via email and asked if he would be willing to try a five question interview on Twitter. I offered to let him know the questions in advance so he could try to stay within the 140 character limit, but he bravely said he would just answer the questions as they came.

Since we are in the same time zone it was easy to set a time to "meet". However, we couldn't see that the other person was there and ready to go, so its finky, as you can see.

Unlike other online interactive social sites, you can't tell if someone is logged in to Twitter until you see an "update" that they have typed in. Complicating doing a back and forth interview is the fact that you need to keep refreshing your screen to see new updates from others. So you type your question and "refresh" till you see the other person's reply show up.

Potentially, anyone "Following" you can see the interview, but they must "Follow" the person you're interviewing as well or they don't see the updates from both parties. Tricky stuff!

Bill has given me permission to post the text of the session here. I copied and pasted the text of my Tweets and His Tweets in order so the "conversation" is easier to read.

Thanks again to Bill for his time and for giving such fun answers to my questions.

Twitter Interview with Bill Crider 3/28/09

librariandoa Good morning. My experimental mini-interview aka "Twitter-view" with mystery author Bill Crider will begin shortly.

librariandoa In order for you to see both sides of the conversation you need to Follow both me and Bill @macavityabc

librariandoa I thank him in advance for agreeing to this and for gamely deciding not to know the questions in advance.

librariandoa I of course cheated and typed in my questions to make sure they stayed in the 140 character limit.

librariandoa Since you can't tell when another Twitter-ee is online (that I know) we'll begin whenever Bill does a reply to this message :)

librariandoa Interesting, you can't see a response or update immediately as you can in a real chat space, you need to refresh your screen.

librariandoa...Checking email to see if he decided to mow his lawn instead :(

librariandoa Nope no mail

librariandoa:( :( :(

librariandoa For once I can write honestly what I'm really doing at this moment. Staring at my screen...

macavityabc@librariandoa Okay, I'm here.

librariandoa Yay!

librariandoa Without further ado!

librariandoa Murder in four parts is your 16th Sheriff Dan Rhodes mystery. Do you have a Character Bible to keep track of your many side characters?

macavityabc@librariandoa No. Nobody told me I needed one until I'd already written five or six of the books. So I have to trust to memory.

librariandoa Along those lines & because I just read an Agatha Christie with her divine little maps, do you have a map of Blacklin County?

macavityabc@librariandoa No, that's another thing I wish I'd done earlier. I have one in my head, though. Sort of. It's an amorphous place.

librariandoa How do you decide what the next "main crime" will be in your novels?

macavityabc There's always a murder. Deciding who's gonna get whacked is the problem. I like to tie things in to a kind of theme. Chickens in #17.

macavityabc@librariandoa By the way I did a map for the Willard Scott books and sent it to the publisher. it was ignored.

librariandoa I would place your novels in two mystery sub-genres: cozy and humor. Do you agree with those?

macavityabc@librariandoa Yes, though I think there might be a little more mayhem in mine than in the usual cozy. Nothing graphic, though.

librariandoa Final question! As a dog lover who hasn't read all the books yet--why does one of Dan's dogs have to sleep outside? Poor doggie!

librariandoa I agree you have more mayhem than is usually allowed in cozies. Pickup trucks as instruments of death etc.

macavityabc@librariandoa Well, he likes it out there. You'll notice that he has a really nice house. He's not the indoor type.

macavityabc@librariandoa And the cat wouldn't let him inside, anyway.

librariandoa You live in a warm climate so maybe dogs are different down thereabouts.

macavityabc@librariandoa Yeah, he's very comfortable, and the insulate igloo is fine if it gets cold.

librariandoa Thats it for the scintillating interview questions, what do you think of Twitter as an interview medium?

macavityabc@librariandoa It was fun, but it's hard to keep the answers short.

librariandoa Isnt it though? Thats why I cheated and wrote them in to test it out.

macavityabc@librariandoa Worked well, I thought.

librariandoa Thank you so much for talking with me this morning. It is nice enough to go out in the sunshine and rake the yard. Take care!

macavityabc@librariandoa You're welcome! It was fun. Have a good time with the leaves.

Visit Bill Crider's web site for more information the author and his work.

Read Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine for an update on every amazing thing that happens in the world as he unearths it.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Read Meme (from Booklist Online via Ning)

Just answer these and put them on your blog or take it to your next book discussion group (the original use for this meme)

1.Which book has been on your shelves the longest?
A tiny book of science fiction short stories with pages falling out I bought at a school book fair.

2.What is your current read, your last read, and the book you’ll read next?
Current: In a Gilded Cage by Rhys Bowen Last read: Hunger games by Suzanne Collins Next: a book from my huge library book pile (they really do all come at once).

3.What book did everyone like and you hated?
The Davinci Code (but I liked the movie)

4.Which book do you keep telling yourself you’ll read, but you probably won’t?
Moby Dick

5.Which book are you saving for “retirement?”
Moby Dick

6.Last page: read it first or wait til the end?
Wait till the end

7. Acknowledgments: waste of ink and paper or interesting aside?
I usually read these, no idea why

8.Which book character would you switch places with?
Dorothy Gale

9.Do you have a book that reminds you of something specific in your life (a person, a place, a time)?
The Year of Magical Thinking/Joan Didion

10.Name a book you acquired in some interesting way.
Acquired "Brighty of the Grand Canyon"/Marguerite Henry by marrying its owner.

11.Have you ever given away a book for a special reason to a special person?
I gave my son "Nate the Great" by Marjorie Weinman Sharmat though he is really named after Nathaniel Hawthorne.

12.Which book has been with you to the most places?
My travel diary. It had a lovely time in San Francisco.

13.Any “required reading” you hated in high school that wasn’t so bad ten years later?
The Scarlet Letter/Nathaniel Hawthorne

14.What is the strangest item you’ve ever found in a book?
I hate it when people use toilet paper as a bookmark.

15.Used or brand new?
Both though brand new is best.

16.Stephen King: Literary genius or opiate of the masses?
Pure genius. Have loved his books since reading Salem's Lot.

17.Have you ever seen a movie you liked better than the book?
I confess The Wizard of Oz movie is superior to the book in my eyes.

18.Conversely, which book should NEVER have been introduced to celluloid?
Stephen King's books are written cinematically and yet they are never translated successfully to film. I have a soft spot for Cujo the film though because they do not let the child die, while the book does.

19.Who is the person whose book advice you’ll always take?

More Things on a Stick, Thing 26: Ning

I haven't looked at Ning since the last round of 23 Things. Luckily I still had my log in information. I have updated my Profile by putting my enhanced D.O.A. avatar in, and I put in my actual library related experience so you can see how I got this way. It has been a rough road. :)

I also posted a few comments on the forums and hope to sign in somewhat frequently during the Things to keep in touch.

Someone has proposed a Ning Book Discussion group, which seems like a good idea.

Also, in a gently viral manner, a meme that first appeared on Booklist Online for "book people" looks interesting enough so that I will attempt it in a separate post.

The Ning forums are much livlier this time around, kudos to whoever moved them up on the Thing Liste.

Onward to glorious Thing 27, which is my new favorite techie thing: Twitter.

Paradoxically Yours, Time Travel Stories

Since the paradoxes and counter-paradoxes of Lost have our heads spinning here at D.O.A. Central, we present a few time travel tales that are not merely about travelling through time, but which address those tricky time paradox issues that can crop up. There are tons more but these are ones that my co-hort and I have read and recommend. After lo those many years as a YA librarian, I still love and read plenty of YA and middle grade novels so you'll find those here as well.

The Time Tunnel by Murray Leinster

Flash Forward by Robert J. Sawyer

The Man who folded himself by David Gerrold

Time Patrol by Poul Anderson

Timescape by Gregory Benford

Gideon the Cutpurse: being the first part of the Gideon trilogy by Linda Buckley- Archer

A Wrinkle in time by Madeleine L' Engle

Time and again by Jack Finney

The Accidental Time Machine by Joe Haldeman

The Forever War by Joe Haldeman

Lightning by Dean R. Koontz

Mr. Was by Pete Hautman

The Navigator by Eoin McNamee

The Time Traveller's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

A Shortcut in time by Charles Dickinson

Artemis Fowl: the Time Paradox by Eoin Colfer

"A sound of Thunder" by Ray Bradbury (short story)

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

So Lost: He's Our You

I thought there was a possibility, but I didn't think he'd shoot the kid. Yikes. No question Ben was at his most vulnerable and he could have been redeemed, but whammo.

Maybe Sayid missed or the Smoke Monster will scoop Ben up and take him to the Others, then the Purge rolls out.

I feel for Sawyer fighting to keep the nice life he has, for the first time in his life.

Powerful episode.

The timeline has officially gone kablooie.

Even More Thing 25: Polls

Blogger has a Poll function that you can access easily, but I tried this Poll creator from Vizu just to see how it works. Sorry Carol, Hepzibah wouldn't load into the poll :( Also, it put my lovely pink skelly outside the box. Feel free to vote for me early and often anyways.

So Lost: Extra Notes on Our Friend Ben

Ah, how I still love this song. Hugs to the little Michael Jackson that I grew up with *sniff* Never mind the song is about a Rat. Soooo touching.

In any case, I also love Doc Jensen's episode recaps and analysis of Lost and in this weeks "Totally Lost" clip he talks about the importance of little Ben in the Namaste episode. I didn't think much of Ben except he is Mr. Creepy Kid of the Universe.

The more I thought about it, the more I thought that once Ben identifies Sayid as an "Other" he will likely help him escape, and I'm assuming Ben has already made his deals with the Others to help in the Purge, so he would rescue Sayid.

This gives the storytellers an opportunity to see what is going on in the "Other" camp, including what our charmers Charles Widmore and Eloise Hawking are up to. Too finky if Daniel is their son, and that's where Daniel has gone off too. nah, that can't be..hmpf. But Penny can be their daughter.

Another thought on present time Ben and how he got so beat up and still unconscious...ha ha Smoke Monster might have given him a little shake or two. Sun's clobber wasn't enough to account for his injuries when John saw him.

Just a few hours till the episode. In the meantime, let the song play through your head. la la la la la la la la la....

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

MalTweeted #5: the Final Episode

I'll keep tweeting and reading tweets, but this is all for the cartoon series. Next up, once I get a better feel for it, that other "social utility" Facebook.

(I used Twitter to make sure the toon text ended right in the 140 character limit, that's why it ends suddenly as it does, in case you didn't catch the irony or whatever it may be).

Monday, March 23, 2009

So Lost: Namaste

I love these episodes that shed more light on the Dharma Initiative.

I can't see how they recruited people at all, let alone got them to agree to be knocked out for a sub trip, then they get mostly menial jobs on the island, as far as we can see. Yet everyone seems happy. Very cultish behavior.

I hate seeing Sawyer mooning over Kate again, and in Jack's presence he is reverting to bad boy behavior instead of being the leader he obviously has been. Yes, he has effectively "hidden them in plain sight" but he is unraveling, I think.

Creepiest scene in the series, the child Ben lies his way in to Sayid's cell to give him a "sandwich"---sheesh guard, at least check the bag! I can't believe there is a sandwich in there and if there is its probably drugged or poisoned. So we have our Torturer, in a cell, hands bound, and Little Mr. Psycho-I'm Going-to Kill-My-Dad-Soon slinking in and I am afraid for Sayid. Yikes.

Random thoughts from what we've seen so far:

The Undamaged Plane will take off at some point with some of the 815-ers, and I think it will travel through time.

Related to this, the Dharma Initiative "Care Package" that was dropped off in an earlier season will be dropped off by our travellers, most likely at the suggestion of Hurley. :)

I think Daniel is off in 1977 Los Angeles or Oxford working on some Time Travel experiments, but he will come back to get Charlotte off the Island.

I think Christian and the Smoke Monster are manifestations of the same entity, but I'm not sure what entity they represent, unless it is the "soul" of the Island.

I don't want the statue to be John Locke. More likely it is Richard Alpert who is a displaced Egyptian Pharoah or God.

I've been puzzling over why Sun didn't go back in time. My theory is it has to do with Jin's wedding ring, which she has with her. I predict it will act in a future episode as a "constant" that will allow an aircraft in flight in the Dharma time (flown by Lapidos) and the flight 316 craft (flown by...Caesar?) to merge and become one, allowing our 815 folks to return to the present day.

Additional thought: Christian's Shoes, which Ben so nattily suggested Jack place on John's body are a "constant" that kept Locke in the present. Ben brought his own "constant", we don't know what. Maybe the book he was reading on the plane. He couldn't perhaps be in the same time as his young creepy self. Further proof of my theory Ben and Eloise Hawking sent people not just back to the Island but back to specific times for their own purposes.

There ya go.

MalTweeted #4 The Sad Loss of a Follower

As you follow people on Twitter and Tweet yourself, you will find some days you gain Followers and then you lose some.

Don't take it to heart when you lose a fan. There is a site called Qwitter that will email you when someone stops following you, and let you know the last thing you posted before they went *poof*

I don't have the exact language of the mail because I haven't gotten one from them them yet, but you get the idea.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

MalTweeted #3 :When you're new to Twitter, any new follower is a fun surprise

I had my Twitter account for a long time and didn't do much with it. Even so, I've gotten emails over time that so and so was following me on Twitter and since I wrote nothing, what could they be following? Still, it seemed a little flattering and it made me feel guilty wondering what these unknown people were looking for.

In the last week or so, since I've started looking for people of interest to me, I've had a great time myself finding interesting people to follow. I don't mind at all if they seldom update their Tweets, I'd be happy to hear anything at all they have to say. I'm fascinated by the news organizations and their short posts, and by those who can convey thoughts effectively in the 140 characters allowed by Twitter. It is not easy to do.

I made up the name of my Follower here, but it came to me in a flash yesterday morning. I haven't "met" anyone with quite that name, but many people have that sort of name or spirit, that's for sure. I've enjoyed seeing what "screen names" and "character names" people come up with since way back in the early 90s when my husband and I played a Trivial Pursuit competion against other players on the now long defunct Delphi Internet Services. I still have my "U Belong on Delphi" T-shirt.

Thanks for the Follow!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Introducing MalTweeted a Limited Toon Series Dedicated to Twitter

I'm having so much fun with all of the newsy-bits and bytes on Twitter, that it has inspired me to "toon it". Since I can't draw I used the very customizeable Toonlet cartoon creator. My ideas and words, their stable of artist's body parts.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Odiogo for Your Blog

As part of the More Twenty Three Things on a Stick program, I'm working on Thing 25, which is all about enhancing your blog. The original 23 Things offered a section on Podcasting but I did not do any podcasting myself.

This time around I'm trying all of the parts of each Thing. Hence, the icon at the top right of my blog for Odiogo. Odiogo turns what you have written into spoken words. The voice is computer generated and it reads your blog posts aloud.

Click on Listen Now above any post to hear it.

Using the free Odiogo service would allow someone to put your blog entries on a pc, iPod, MP3 player or Mobile Phone, and listen to them at their leisure. It would also be useful for someone who is visually impaired.

Give it a try for your own blog at: http://www.odiogo.com/index.php

Funny, when I write my posts I hear my own voice reading it. It may change how I express things to hear it read in a serious tone. We shall see.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Mystery, Suspense and Thriller Authors on Twitter

NOTE: All updates to this list will now appear on my LibrariandoasReadersWiki page:


Although Twitter can be fun and it potentially gives valuable information in easily digestible bits, it is really difficult to find anything by subject. Here are the beginnings of my list of mystery, suspense and thriller authors who use Twitter to keep their fans and friends up to date. I'll be adding to the list as I unearth more authors. Enjoy!

Abbott, Jeff http://twitter.com/JeffAbbott

Albert, Susan Wittig http://twitter.com/susanalbert1

Alexander, Tasha http://twitter.com/talexander

Andrews, Donna http://twitter.com/mordelaire

Bowen, Rhys http://twitter.com/Rhysbowen

Brookins, Carl http://twitter.com/CarlBrookins

Burke, Jan http://twitter.com/Jan_Burke

Chesler, Rick http://twitter.com/RickChesler

Coban, Harlan http://twitter.com/harlancoben

Coyle, Eddie http://twitter.com/DeathrydeAuthor

Crider, Bill http://twitter.com/macavityabc

David, Evelyn http://twitter.com/evelyndavid

Ellison, J. T. http://twitter.com/thrillerchick

Finder, Joe http://twitter.com/JoeFinder

Goldberg, Lee http://twitter.com/LeeGoldberg

Grant, Andrew http://twitter.com/Andrew_Grant

Hellman, Libby http://twitter.com/libbyfh

Hughes, Charlotte http://twitter.com/Charlottehughes

Karp, Marshall http://twitter.com/MarshallKarp (You must request permission to follow Marshall Karp's Tweets)

King, Laurie http://twitter.com/mary_russell

Konrath, J.A. http://twitter.com/jakonrath

Lavene, Jim https://twitter.com/Jimlavene

Lavene, Joyce https://twitter.com/author54

Leonard, Elmore http://twitter.com/elmoreleonard

McGoran, Jon

Meredith, Marilyn http://twitter.com/MarilynMeredith

Palmer, Michael http://twitter.com/Michael_Palmer

Perry, Anne http://twitter.com/anneperrywriter (Tweets are guarded, you'll need permission to follow her posts)

Pinter, Jason http://twitter.com/jasonpinter

Rhoades, J. D. http://twitter.com/JD_Rhoades

Rollins, James http://twitter.com/jamesrollins

Scottoline, Lisa http://twitter.com/LisaScottoline

Sokoloff, Alexandra http://twitter.com/AlexSokoloff

Smith, Roger http://twitter.com/rog_smith

Stabenow, Dana http://twitter.com/danastabenow

Swierczynski, Duane http://twitter.com/swierczy

White, Dave http://twitter.com/Dave_White

Friday, March 13, 2009

Saving the World One Question at a Time

Back to the ever changing world of library reference work! People are a little slow rolling in this morning but so far all customers are mellow and the questions are easy.

Never fear, should a tough question come up, my Lightsaber-O-Knowledge will save the day. Or I'll toss the question to Cleery :)

(Thanks to the Floating Lush for the updated Hero Machine Thingy).

Make your own!
The title of the comic varies depending upon your creation.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

All God's Children Get Weary When They Roam, Don't It Make You Wanna Go Home?

Today we say goodbye to the silver men and women on the docks, to the guys who jump out from dead shrubbery and say "you've had the thrill now pay the bill" and the guy who asked "Do you want to hear a really good joke today"? (he was sitting by the docks, wild hair blowing in the wind, not at Punchline).

Goodbye to the trolleys, the hills, the beautiful homes from another century lovingly restored. A beautiful, fun packed city if ever there was one.

Back to deep cold and more snow! Aggghhh! Go away snow, I want the spring weather that we've seen here.

Still I'm ready to sleep in my own bed and I miss everyone at home and work. I miss my little beagles.

The title is from an old song by Joe South, for all you old rock fans.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Adventure Cats

We sailed yesterday on a catamaran called the Adventure Cat. It went near our old haunt Alcatraz, around the bay a bit, then under the Golden Gate Bridge.

The captain and his mate were both called Hans. Very laid back guys. On the way back towards dock, the captain let anyone who wished take the wheel for a bit.

We also visited Chinatown and the Fortune Cookie Factory in a small alley. They were making the fortune cookies by hand right in the store and it smelled wonderful. The owner gave out a small slip of paper with a fortune on it and several non-folded pieces of fortune cookie.

The markets there were just bustling with activity, fresh fruits and vegetables being put out and customers buying them almost as quickly as they were set down.

We stopped by a pet shop that had a beagle in it years ago when we visited and it had been priced at over six hundred dollars. Over our heads, but we wished we could take him home. No beagles this time, but tons of exotic fish in a lower level all dim lights and darting shapes.

Today the guys went bicycling around the bay and back to Muir Beach while I trolled the shops on Fisherman's Wharf. I also took it into my wee head to go on my own to a bookstore quite aways away. I took a cab by myself for the first time ever. I swear the guy went all over town before getting to the store.

In order to get back homewards I walked a good fifteen blocks in the wrong direction (looking for the trolley) before a kind guy told me just another ten blocks ahead was the BART bus. No more cabs for me.

How could I not mention...we went to see the Watchmen! Just a short jaunt away so we go to this multi-plex with seven floors. The ticket guy at the bottom says our movie is in theater 14 waaay up top. So we scoot up the escalators and theater fourteen is showing Commonwealth. We are running late but we take a peek at our tickets and lo its in theater 6. Zoom down we go.

The movie is about superheroes in some hellish alternate time where Nixon is in his third term of office. The superheroes are Anti-Superheroes, as it turns out and the film is one scene of pooling blood after another. Yech. Bad music. Worse acting. I liked the most Anti of the Superheroes best, a very creepy but righteous dude named Rorschach. Except the cleaver scene, ack.

Monday, March 9, 2009

A Lush Life

We made it to Muir Woods and unlike our last visit there, I got great pictures that I think show the essence of what it is like. It is only $5.00 to get in and it appears to be a popular Sunday destination for people. There were plenty of parking spaces when we got there around 10a.m. but when we came out around 1:30 people were having to park back up the winding road.

We let N drive a little so he could see what those switchbacks were really like. He just peels out of the lot and we go nuts telling him to slow down. "Im going the speed limit, he says" ack!!! He found Muir Beach for us by heading the wrong way so it was all good. Tons of people on the beach as well.

I bought 3 Day passes for the trolleys and we had a nice visit at the Trolley Museum before hopping back on to Union Square, the end of the line. Walking up the road I spotted a LUSH store, home of our own Floating Lush! I went across to get my photo snapped in front of it.

The Punchline Comedy Club was great. Fifteen comedians, each with 6 minutes each to perform. Apparently this is a regular Sunday Night event.

Connection speed way too slow here, no more photos this morning.

Off to Chinatown (which my husband thinks will be interesting to revisit (we've been there several times in the past) after being in Shanghai, and a catamaran ride around the bay. (will correct later if its some other ship type :)

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Welcome to Sunny San Francisco!

Our flight went smoothly once the guy in front of us with the big deep voice settled down to watching a movie or something. Give that man a megaphone! Not that he needs it.

We trotted right off to check out Fisherman's Wharf and then onwards to Alcatraz. We've been there before but it is a fascinating place. I have some good photos but they are slooow loading to Flickr. Will try to get the rest manana and do an Animoto of Alcatraz.

Off to Muir Woods tomorrow we think, then riding the trolleys to the ends of each line (we're wild doggies) or the Hop On, Hop Off Bus Tours which are great for getting acquainted with the most interesting sights in any city that offers them. Then, for N, that big Comedy Central fan, we thought we would try a Comedy Club.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Civil War Fiction for Teens

More from the "D.O.A. as YA Librarian" Vault! Tsk, need to fill in a couple of annotations. This looks much better in Microsoft Publisher format. Also, the list is a couple of years old and I was bound by the need for us to have a certain number of copies of an item in order to include it on a list.

No Man's Land A Young Soldier's Story by Susan Bartoletti Thrasher Magee joins the Confederate Army to show his father he is not a coward.

Evvy’s Civil War by Miriam Brenaman Just as Evvy turns fourteen and must enter “society” the Civil War begins and changes all of her expectations for the future.

With every drop of blood by James Collier Johnny is captured by black Union soldiers on his way to a mission for the Confederacy in Richmond.

Promises to the dead by Mary Downing Hahn Jesse promises a runaway slave that he will deliver her children to safety.

Soldier’s Heart by Gary Paulsen Fifteen year old Charley Goddard lies about his age to join the Union Army at age 15. His experiences and injuries on the battlefield age him and give him “soldier’s heart”.

Dear Ellen Bee: a Civil War scrapbook of two Union spies by Mary E. Lyons Elizabeth, a white society woman and Liza, the daughter of freed slaves join together to create fictitious "Ellen Bee", a spy during the Civil War.

The River between us by Richard Peck A grandson tells the story of two girls whose Civil War visit changes family history.

The War within by Carol Matas Ulysses Grant issues General Order #11 which demands all Jews leave the territories under his control.

Across five Aprils by April Hunt An Illinois farm boy who sees family and friends take sides in the Civil War must decide where he stands.

The Tamarack tree: a novel of the seige of Vicksburg by Patricia Clapp A British teen is trapped in the seige of Vicksburg.

Second sight by Gary L. Blackwood

Assassin by Anna Myers

Annie, between the states by Laura Elliott

Before the creeks ran red by Carolyn Reeder

Anna Sunday by Sally M. Keehn

Private Captain: a story of Gettysburg by Marty Crisp
A voice from the border by Pamela Smith Hill Set in the very divided state of Missouri during the Civil War, Union soldiers take over a home of a family with Confederate sympathies.

Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane

Ann Rinaldi’s Civil War Stories

Amelia’s war Amelia tries to trick a general who threatens to burn down the twon she lives in.

Girl in blue Sixteen year old Sarah joins the Union army to avoid an arranged marriage. She fights as Neddy Compton, and when she is finally discovered, she takes a job as a spy.

Mine eyes have seen A look at the controversial historical figure John Brown through the eyes of his teenage daughter.

Numbering all the bones After the Civil War, a young black girl searches Andersonville Prison for word of her brother.

Sarah’s ground Eighteen year old Sarah becomes caretaker of historic Mount Vernon as the Civil War breaks out. She tries to remain neutral while protecting the house and grounds.

An acquaintence with darkness

In my father’s house

Fantastic tales for the avid fantasy reader: Imagination, Possibility, and Magic

Here's another list I've done that needs lots of updating but it is easier for me to get at here so voila! Over the many years I did YA, it was easy for me to recommend authors and titles but a year or two out of that and into the adult fiction maven thing...ack my mind goes blank. This is for me as well as anyone.

Included are my own recommendations plus the books that the really super avid fantasy reading kids who come in ask for. When they say "do you have this book" in that sort hushed, excited voice and their face breaks into a huge smile when you say yes...those books make this list for sure.

5/28/09 I've edited the list considerably. I'm adding in titles that anyone reading youth fantasy would love to read, in my humblest of opinions. Classics such as The Wizard of Oz and Alice in Wonderland are now in. Visions of these should be floating about in any true fantasy reader's head. I'm also filling in the full series where I might have noted just the first one. That will take awhile. Read and enjoy.

Abbott, Tony The Hidden Stairs and the Magic Carpet (Secrets of Droon #1)
Alexander, Lloyd The Book of three (Prydain Chronicles #1)
Alexander, Lloyd The Black Cauldron (Prydain Chronicles #2)
Alexander, Lloyd Castle of Llyr (Prydain Chronicles #3)
Alexander, Lloyd Taran Wanderer (Prydain Chronicles #4)
Alexander, Lloyd The High King (Prydain Chronicles #5)
Alexander, Lloyd The Foundling and other tales of Prydain
Alexander, Lloyd Westmark (Westmark Trilogy #1)
Alexander, Lloyd The Kestral (Westmark Trilogy #2)
Alexander, Lloyd The Beaggar Queen (Westmark Trilogy #3)
Anderson, M. T. The game of sunken places
Anthony, Piers A Spell for Chameleon (Magic of Xanth series #1)
Banks, Lynne Reid The Indian in the cupboard (#1)
Banks, Lynne Reid Return of the Indian (#2)
Banks, Lynne Reid Secret of the Indian (#3)
Banks, Lynne Reid Mystery of the cupboard (#4)
Banks, Lynne Reid Key to the Indian (#5)
Barker, Clive Abarat (Abarat #1)
Barker, Clive Days of magic, nights of war (Abarat #2)
Barrie, J.M. Peter Pan
Barron, T. A. The Lost Years of Merlin
Barron, T.A. The Seven Songs of Merlin
Barron, T.A. The Fires of Merlin
Barron, T.A. The Mirror of Merlin
Barron, T.A. The Wings of Merlin
Barry, Dave and Pearson, Ridley Peter and the Starcatchers (Starcatcher's Trilogy #1)
Barry, Dave and Pearson, Ridley Peter and the Shadow Thieves (Starcatcher's Trilogy #2)
Barry, Dave and Pearson, Ridley Peter and the Secret of Rundoon
Barry, Dave and Pearson, Ridley Peter and the Sword of Mercy (Starcatcher's #4)
Bass, L. G. Sign of the Qin (Outlaws of Moonshadow Marsh #1)
Bath, K. P. The Secret of Castle Cant: being an account of the remarkable adventures of Lucy Wickwright, maidservant and spy (#1)
Bath, K. P. Escape from Castle Kant (#2)
Baum, L. Frank The Wizard of Oz
Bell, Hilari The Wizard Test
Bell, Ted Nick of Time: a Lord Hawke novel
Boston, Lucy Maria The Children of Green Knowe (Green Knowe Chronicles #1)
Bradbury, Ray Something Wicked This Way Comes
Breen M. E. Darkwood
Brennan, Herbie Faerie wars (Faerie Wars Chronicles #1)
Brennan, Herbie The Purple Emperor (Faerie Wars Chronicles #2)
Brennan, Herbie Ruler of the Realm (Faerie Wars Chronicles #3)
Brennan, Herbie Faerie Lord (Faerie Wars Chronicles #4)
Brooks, Terry The Sword of Shanarra (Heritage of Shannara Series)
Buckley, Michael The Fairy-Tale Detectives (Sister's Grimm #1)
Buckley, Michael The Unusual Suspects (Sister's Grimm #2)
Buckley, Michael The Problem Child (Sister's Grimm #3)
Buckley, Michael Once upon a crime (Sister's Grimm #4)
Buckley, Michael Magic and other misdemeanors (Sister's Grimm #5)
Buckley, Michael Tales from the Hood (Sister's Grimm #6)
Buckley, Michael The Everafter War (Sister's Grimm #7)
Buckley-Archer, Linda Gideon the Cutpurse: Being the First Part of the Gideon Trilogy (Also known as "The Time Traveler's)
Buckley-Archer, Linda The Time Thief (Gideon Trilogy #2)
Buckley-Archer, Linda The Time Quake (Gideon Trilogy #3)
Buffie, Margaret The Watcher (Watcher’s Quest #1)
Buffie, Margaret The Seeker (Watcher’s Quest #2)
Buffie, Margaret The Finder (Watcher's Quest #3)
Carmody, Isabelle Night Gate (Gateway Trilogy #1)
Carmon, Patrick The Dark Hills Divide (Land of Elyon #1)
Carmon, Patrick Beyond the Valley of Thorns (Land of Elyon #2)
Carmon, Patrick The Tenth City (Land of Elyon #3)
Carmon, Patrick Into the Mist (Land of Elyon #4)
Carmon, Patrick Stargazer (Land of Elyon #5)
Carroll, Lewis Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Carroll, Lewis Through the Looking Glass
Cashore, Kristin Graceling
Cashore, Kristin Fire (companion to Graceling)
Chabon, Michael Summerland
Chima, Cinda Williams The Demon King
Collins, Suzanne Gregor the Overlander (Underland Chronicles #1)
Collins, Suzanne Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane (Underland Chronicles #2)
Collins, Suzanne Gregor and the Curse of the Warmbloods (Underland Chronicles #3)
Collins, Suzanne Gregor and the Marks of Secret (Underland Chronicles #4)
Collins, Suzanne Gregor and the Code of the Claw (Underland Chronicles #4)
Collins, Suzanne Hunger Games
Collins, Suzanne Catching Fire
Constable, Kate The Singer of all songs (Chanters of Tremaris Trilogy)
Colfer, Eoin Artemis Fowl (Artemis Fowl #1)
Colfer, Eoin Artemis Fowl: the Arctic Incident (Artemis Fowl #2)
Colfer, Eoin Artemis Fowl: the Eternity Code (Artemis Fowl #3)
Colfer, Eoin Artemis Fowl: the Opal Deception (Artemis Fowl #4)
Colfer, Eoin Artemis Fowl: the Lost Colony (Artemis Fowl #5)
Colfer, Eoin Artemis Fowl: the Time Paradox (Artemis Fowl #6)
Colfer, Eoin The Wish list (non-series)
Colfer, Eoin The Supernaturalist (non-series)
Cooper, Susan Over sea, under stone (The Dark is Rising #1)
Cooper, Susan The Dark is Rising (The Dark is Rising #2)
Cooper, Susan Greenwitch (The Dark is Rising #3)
Cooper, Susan The Grey King (The Dark is Rising #4)
Cooper, Susan Silver on the Tree (The Dark is Rising #5)
Crossley-Holland, Kevin The Seeing stone (Arthur Trilogy)
Dahl, Roald Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Dahl, Roald Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator
Dahl, Roald James and the Giant Peach
Dahl, Roald The Minpins
Dahl, Roald The Witches
Dale, Anna Whispering to Witches
Dale, Anna Spellbound
Deary, Terry The Fire Thief (Fire Thief Trilogy #1)
Deary, Terry Flight of the Fire Thief (Flight of the Fire Thief #2)
Deary, Terry The Fire Thief Fights Back (Flight of the Fire Thief #3)
Del Vecchio, Gene The Pearl of Anton
Delaney, Joseph Revenge of the Witch (The Last Apprentice #1)
Delaney, Joseph Curse of the Bane (The Last Apprentice #2)
Delaney, Joseph Night of the soul-stealer (The Last Apprentice #3)
Delaney, Joseph Attack of the fiend (The Last Apprentice #4)
Delaney, Joseph Wrath of the Bloodeye (The Last Apprentice #5)
Delaney, Joseph Clash of the demons (The Last Apprentice #6)
DiTerlizzi, Tony The Field Guide (Spiderwick Chronicles #1)
DiTerlizzi, Tony The Seeing Stone (Spiderwick Chronicles #2)
DiTerlizzi, Tony Lucinda's Secret (Spiderwick Chronicles #3)
DiTerlizzi, Tony The Ironwood Tree (Spiderwick Chronicles #4)
DiTerlizzi, Tony Wrath of Mulgrath (Spiderwick Chronicles #5)
Duane, Diane So you want to be a wizard (Young Wizards #1)
Doyle, Debra School of Wizardry (Circle of Magic #1)
Doyle, Debra Tournament and Tower (Circle of Magic #2)
Doyle, Debra The City By the Sea (Circle of Magic #3)
Doyle, Debra The Prince's Players (Circle of Magic #4)
Doyle, Debra The Prisoners of Bell Castle (Castle of Magic #5)
Doyle, Debra The High King's Daughter (Castle of Magic #6)
Doyle, Debra Knight’s Wyrd
Duane, Diane Deep Wizardry (Young Wizards #2)
Duane, Diane High Wizardry (Young Wizards #3)
Duane, Diane A Wizard Abroad (Young Wizards #4)
Duane Diane The Wizard's Dilemma (Young Wizards #5)
Duane, Diane A Wizard Alone (Young Wizards #6)
Duane, Diane Wizard's Holiday (Young Wizards #7)
Duane, Diane Wizards at war (Young Wizards #8)
Eager, Edward Half magic
Eager, Edward Knight's Castle
Eager, Edward Magic by the Lake
Eager, Edward Magic or Not?
Eager, Edward Seven-Day Magic
Eager, Edward The Time Garden
Eager, Edward The Well-wishers
Farmer, Nancy Sea of Trolls
Fisher, Catherine The Oracle betrayed (The Oracle Prophecies)
Flanagan, John The ruins of Gorlan (Ranger's Apprentice #1)
Flanagan, John The Burning Bridge (Ranger's Apprentice #2)
Flanagan, John The icebound land (Ranger's Apprentice #3)
Flanagan, John The battle for Skandia (Ranger's Apprentice #4)
Flanagan, John Sorceror of the North (Ranger's Apprentice #5)
Flanagan, John The seige of Mackindaw (Ranger's Apprentice #6)
Funke, Cornelia Dragon Rider
Funke, Cornelia Inkheart (Inkheart Trilogy #1)
Funke, Cornelia Inkspell (Inkheart Trilogy #2)
Funke, Cornelia Inkdeath (Inkheart Trilogy #3)
Funke, Cornelia The Thief Lord
Gaiman, Neil Coraline
Gaiman, Neil The Graveyard Book
Gliori, Debi Pure Dead Magic (Pure Dead #1)
Gliori, Debi Pure dead wicked (Pure Dead #2)
Gliori, Debi Pure Dead brilliant (Pure Dead #3)
Gregorian, Joyce Ballou Broken Citadel (Tredana #1)
Gregorian, Joyce Ballou Castledown (Tredana #2)
Gregorian, Joyce Ballou The Great Wheel (Tredana #3)
Hanley, Victoria The Seer and the sword
Hanley, Victoria The Healer’s keep
Hill, Stuart Cry of the Icemark
Howard, Joan The Thirteenth is Magic
Hunter, Erin The Quest Begins (Seekers #1)(Bears)
Hunter, Erin Great Bear Lake (Seekers #2)
Hunter, Erin Smoke Mountain (Seekers #3)
Hunter Erin Into the Wild (Warriors #1) (Cats)
Hunter, Erin Fire and Ice (Warriors #2)
Hunter, Erin Forest of Secrets (Warriors #3)
Hunter, Erin Rising Storm (Warriors #4)
Hunter, Erin A Dangerous Path (Warriors #5)
Hunter, Erin The Darkest Hour (Warriors #6)
Hunter, Erin The Sight (Warriors Power of Three #1)
Hunter, Erin Dark River (Warriors Power of Three #2)
Hunter, Erin Outcast (Warriors Power of Three #3)
Hunter, Erin Eclipse (Warriors Power of Three #4)
Hunter, Erin Long Shadows (Warriors Power of Three #5)
Hunter, Erin Sunrise (Warriors Power of Three #6)
Hunter, Erin Firestar's quest (Warrior's Super Edition #1)
Hunter, Erin Midnight (Warriors the New Prophecy #1)
Hunter, Erin Moonrise (Warriors the New Prophecy #2)
Hunter, Erin Dawn (Warriors the New Prophecy #3)
Hunter, Erin Starlight (Warriors the New Prophecy #4)
Hunter, Erin Twilight (Warriors the New Prophecy #5)
Hunter, Erin Sunset (Warriors the New Prophecy #6)
Jarvis, Robin The Alchemist’s Cat (The Deptford Histories)
Jarvis, Robin The Dark portal ( Deptford Mice Trilogy)
Jarvis, Robin The Thorn Ogres of Hagwood (The Hagwood Trilogy)
Jones, Diana Wynne Cart and Cwidder (The Dalemark Quartet)
Kay, Elizabeth The Divide
Kay, Elizabeth Back to the Divide
Kay, Elizabeth Jinx on the Divide
Kerr, Philip The Akhennaten adventure (Children of the Lamp #1)
Kerr, Philip The Blue Djinn of Babylon (Children of the Lamp #2)
Kerr, Philip The Cobra King of Kathmandu (Children of the Lamp #3)
Kerr, Philip The Day of the Djinn Warriors (Children of the Lamp #4)
Kerr, Philip The Eye of the Forest (Children of the Lamp #5)
Kilworth, Garry Attica
Kingsley, Kaza The Dragon's Eye (Erec Rex#1)
Kingsley, Kaza The Monsters of Otherness (Erec Rex #2)
Kingsley, Kaza The Search for Truth (Erec Rex #3)
Kurtz, Jane The Feverbird claw
Landry, Derek Skulduggery Pleasant
Landry, Derek Skulduggery Pleasant: Playing with fire
Lasky, Katheryn Guardians of Ga’hoole series
Laurie, Victoria Oracles of Delphi keep
L’Engle, Madeline A wrinkle in time (Time trilogy #1)
L’Engle, Madeline A wind in the door (Time Trilogy #2)
L’Engle, Madeline A swiftly titling planet (Time Trilogy #3)
L’Engle, Madeline Many waters (Time Trilogy #4)
LeGuin, Ursula K. A Wizard of Earthsea (Earthsea Cycle #1)
LeGuin, Ursula K. The Tombs of Atuan (Earthsea Cycle #2)
LeGuin, Ursula K. The Farthest Shore (Earthsea Cycle #3)
LeGuin, Ursula K. tehanu: the last book of Earthsea (Earthsea Cycle #4)
Levine, Gail Carson Ella Enchanted
Lewis, C. S. The Lion, the witch and the wardrobe (The Chronicles of Narnia #1)
McKinley, Robin The Blue Sword
McKinley, Robin The Hero and the Crown
McNamee, Eoin The Navigator (Navigator Trilogy #1)
McNamee, Eoin City of Time (Navigator Trilogy #2)
McNamee, Eoin The Frost Child (Navigator Trilogy #3)
Melling O.R. The Hunter's Moon (Chronicles of Faerie #1)
Melling, O.R. The Summer King (Chronicles of Faerie #2)
Melling O.R. The Light-bearer's Daughter (Chronicles of Faerie #3)
Melling, O.R. The Book of Dreams (Chronicles of Faerie #4)
Morris, Gilbert The Squire’s Tale (Squire’s Tales series)
Mull, Brandon Fablehaven (Fablehaven #1)
Mull, Brandon Rise of the Evening Star (Fablehaven #2)
Mull, Brandon Grip of the Shadow Plague (Fablehaven #3)
Mull, Brandon Secrets of the Dragon Sanctuary (Fablehaven #4)
Nation, Caleb Bran Hambric: the Farfield Curse
Nimmo, Jenny Midnight for Charlie Bone (Children of the Red King #1)
Nimmo, Jenny Charlie Bone and the Time Twister (Children of the Red King #2)
Nimmo, Jenny Charlie Bone and the Invisible Boy (Children of the Red King #3)
Nimmo, Jenny Charlie Bone and the castle of mirrors (Children of the Red King #4)
Nimmo, Jenny Charlie Bone and the Hidden King (Children of the Red King #5)
Nimmo, Jenny Charlie Bone and the Beast (Children of the Red King #6)
Nimmo, Jenny Charlie Bone and the Shadow (Children of the Red King #7)
Nix, Garth Sabriel (The Abhorsen Trilogy #1)
Nix, Garth Lirael: daughter of the Clayr (Abhorsen Trilogy #2)
Nix, Garth Abhorsen (Abhorsen Trilogy #3)
Nix, Garth The Fall (The Seventh Tower series #1)
Nix, Garth The Castle (The Seventh Tower series #2)
Nix, Garth Aenir (The Seventh Tower series #3)
Nix, Garth Above the Veil (The Seventh Tower series #4)
Nix, Garth Into battle (The Seventh Tower series #5)
Nix, Garth The Violet Keystone (The Seventh Tower series #6)
Nix, Garth Grim Tuesday (Keys to the Kingdom #1)
Nix, Garth Mister Monday (Keys to the Kingdom #2)
Nix, Garth Drowned Wednesday (Keys to the Kingdom #3)
Nix, Garth Sir Thursday (Keys to the Kingdom #4)
Nix, Garth Lady Friday (Keys to the Kingdom #5)
Nix, Garth Superior Saturday (Keys to the Kingdom #6)
Norton, Mary The Borrowers (Borrowers #1)
Norton, Mary The Borrowers Afield (Borrowers #2)
Norton, Mary The Borrowers Afloat (Borrowers #3)
Norton, Mary The Borrowers Aloft (Borrowers #4)
Norton, Mary The Borrowers Avenged (Borrowers #5)
Norton, Mary Poor Stainless: A New Story About the Borrowers (Borrowers #6)
Norton, Mary The Magic Bed Knob; or, How to Become a Witch in Ten Easy Lessons
Norton, Mary Bonfires and Broomsticks
Owen, James Here, there be dragons (Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica #1)
Owen, James The Search for the Red Dragon (Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica #2)
Paolini, Christopher Eragon (Inheritance #1)
Paolini, Christopher Eldest (Inheritance #2)
Paolini, Christopher Brisingr, or the seven promises of Eragon Shadeslayer and Saphira Bjartskular (Inheritance #3)
Patterson, James Witch and Wizard
Pierce, Tamora Alanna the first adventure (Song of the Lioness #1)
Pierce, Tamora First test (Protector of the small #1)
Pierce, Tamora Sandry’s book (Circle of Magic #1)
Pierce, Tamora Trickster’s choice
Pierce,Tamora Trickster’s Queen
Pierce, Tamora Wild Magic (The Immortals #1)
Pratchett, Terry The color of magic (Discworld)
Prineas, Sarah The Magic Thief (Magic Thief #1)
Prineas, Sarah The Magic Thief: Lost (Magic Thief #2)
Prior, Natalie Lily Quench series
Pullman, Philip The Golden Compass (Dark Materials #1)
Pullman, Philip The Subtle knife (Dark Materials #2)
Pullman, Philip The Amber spyglass (Dark Materials #3)
Riordan, Rick The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson & the Olympians #1)
Riordan, Rick The Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson & the Olympians #2)
Riordan, Rick The Titan's Curse (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #3)
Riordan, Rick The Battle of the Labyrinth (Percy Jackson & the Olympians #4)
Riordan, Rick Percy Jackson: the Demi-God Files (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #5)
Rodda, Emily Rowan of Rin (Rowan of Rin #1)
Rodda, Emily The Forests of silence (Deltora Quest #1)
Rodda, Emily Dragons of Deltorra series
Rollins, James Jake Ransom and the Skull King's Shadow
Sage, Angie Magyk (Septimus Heap #1)
Sage, Angie Flyte (Septimus Heap #2)
Sage, Angie Physik (Septimus Heap #3)
Sage, Angie Queste (Septimus Heap #4)
Scott, Michael The Alchemyst: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel #1
Scott, Michael The Magician: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel #2
Scott, Michael The Sorceress: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel #3
Sensel, Joni The Humming of Numbers
Sensel, Joni The Farwalker's Quest
Skye, Obert Leven Thumps and the gateway to Foo (Leven Thumps #1)
Skye, Obert Leven Thumps and the whispered secret (Leven Thumps #2)
Skye, Obert Leven Thumps and the eyes of Want (Leven Thumps #3)
Skye, Obert Leven Thumps and the wrath of Ezra (Leven Thumps #4)
Sleigh, Barbara Carbonel, King of the Cats (#1)
Sleigh, Barbara The Kingdom of Carbonel (#2)
Sleigh, Barbara Carbonel and Calidor: Being the Further Adventures of a Royal Cat (#3)
Smith, Sherwood Wren to the rescue (Wren books)
Smith, Sherwood Wren’s quest (Wren books)
Smith, Sherwood Crown duel (Crown and Court Duet #1)
Snicket, Lemony The Bad Beginning (A series of unfortunate events #1)
Stewart, Paul & Riddell, Chris Beyond the deep woods (The Edge Chronicles #1)
Stewart, Paul & Riddell, Chris Stormchaser (The Edge Chronicles #2)
Stewart, Paul and Riddell, Chris Midnight over Sanctaphrax (Edge Chronicles #3)
Stewart, Paul and Riddell, Chris The Curse of the Gloamglozer (Edge Chronicles #4)
Stewart, Paul and Riddell, Chris The Last of the Sky Pirates (Edge Chronicles #5)
Stewart, Paul and Riddell, Chris Vox (Edge Chronicles #6)
Stewart, Paul and Riddell, Chris Freeglader (Edge Chronicles #7)
Stewart, Paul and Riddell, Chris The Winter Knights (Edge Chronicles #8)
Stewart, Paul and Riddell, Chris Clash of the Sky Galleons (Edge Chronicles #9)
Stone, Jeffrey Tiger (Five Ancestors #1)
Stone, Jeffrey Monkey (Five Ancestors #2)
Stone, Jeffrey Snake (Five Ancestors #3)
Stone, Jeffrey Crane (Five Ancestors #4)
Stone, Jeffrey Eagle (Five Ancestors #5)
Stone, Jeffrey Mouse (Five Ancestors #6)
Stroud, Jonathan The Amulet of Samarkand (The Bartimaeus Trilogy #1)
Stroud, Jonathan The Golem’s eye (The Bartimaeus Trilogy #2)
Stroud, Jonathan Ptolemy's gate (The Bartimaeus Trilogy #3)
Stroud, Jonathan Heroes of the valley
Tolkien, J. R. R. The Hobbit
Tolkien, J. R. R. The Fellowship of the ring (Lord of the Rings #1)
Travers, P.L. Mary Poppins (#1)
Travers, P.L. Mary Poppins Comes Back (#2)
Travers, P.L. Mary Poppins Opens the Door (#3)
Travers, P.L. Mary Poppins in the Park (#4)
Travers, P.L. Mary Poppins From A to Z (#5)
Travers, P.L. Mary Poppins in the Kitchen (#6)
Travers, P.L. Mary Poppins in Cherry Tree Lane (#7)
Travers, P.L. Mary Poppins and the House Next Door (#8)
Turner, Megan Whalen The Thief
Weis, Margaret Dragons of Autumn Twilight (Dragonlance Chronicles)
Winthrop, Elizabeth Castle in the attic
Zambreno, Mary Frances A plague of sorcerors
Zambreno, Mary Frances Journeyman wizard

Readable Classics: Timeless Tales

Here is my handy list of "Readable Classics" something I compiled awhile ago to meet the requests of people who wanted to read or were required to read a "classic". Everyone likes a personal recommendation, so this list has things I've liked and read and books recommended by customers of all ages as well. Yes, I do know "readable" is in the eye of the beholder, but we have to start somewhere.

Pride and Prejudice/Jane Austen
The Picture of Dorian Gray/Oscar Wilde
The Hunchback of Notre Dame/Victor Hugo
Alas, Babylon/Pat Frank
A Room with a View/ E. M. Forester
A Tale of Two Cities/Charles Dickens
Invisible Man/Ralph Ellison
Native Son/ Richard Wright
Catch 22/Joseph Heller
Brave New World/ Aldous Huxley
Lord of the Flies/William Golding
Dracula/Bram Stoker
Frankenstein/Mary Shelley
The Three Musketeers/Alexander Dumas
To Kill a Mockingbird/Harper Lee
One Hundred Years of Solitude/Gabriel Garcia Marquez
House of the Spirits/Isabel Allende
Count of Monte Cristo/Alexander Dumas
Farewell to arms/Ernest Hemingway
Jane Eyre/ Charlotte Bronte
Wuthering Heights/ Emily Bronte
1984/George Orwell
The Red Badge of Courage/Stephen Crane
Twenty Thousand Leagues under the sea/Jules Verne
The Time Machine/H. G. Wells
Catcher in the Rye/J. D. Salinger
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn/Betty Smith
So Big/Edna Ferber
The Scarlet Pimpernel/Baroness Orczy
Fahrenheit 451/Ray Bradbury
On the beach/Nevil Shute
How Green was My Valley/ Richard Llewellen
My Antonia/Willa Cather
Gone with the Wind/Margaret Mitchell
Rebecca/Daphne Du Maurier
All Quiet on the Western Front/Erich Maria Remarque
Tarzan/Edgar Rice Burroughs
The Yearling/Marjorie Kinnen Rawlings
Little Women/Louisa May Alcott
Of Mice and Men/John Steinbeck

So Lost...The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham

This is my least favorite episode ever I think, aside from the one featuring the hideous actor types who ended up getting buried alive (Nikki and Paulo).

I'm not a fan of the John Locke character, he is so weak willed and easily influenced. And yet...you can't help feeling sorry for him sometimes, and there are times when he is just so nice and so decent that you want to like him. All of that is in this episode as he tries to convince the Oceanic Six to return to the Island.

The question on everyone's mind the day after the episode aired was...who is the good guy? We all really would like there to be a good guy and bad guy here twisting these people's lives and hopes constantly (not to mention the audiences hopes).

After watching the episode a second time, I don't think there is a good guy involved at all. Charles Widmore and Ben seemed equally determined to use John to try to get the Six back if it could be done. Neither was really going to let him live once he had done this work, or failed in it. Having Widmore and Ben know that Richard Alpert had said John must die sealed his fate.

Widmore assigned Abbadon to him, and had Abbadon browbeating and demeaning John at every step, browbeating and demeaning being Charles' stock in trade...remember his techniques with Desmond. Despite how earnest he sounded, he hit John right up front with Abbadon himself, and with the dreaded and hated wheelchair. I'm sure Widmore expected John to kill himself all along with a bit of nudging.

Ben of course put on one of his slimiest shows of sympathy ever before killing John himself. I thought the first time around watching the show it was a combination of hearing Jin was alive and the mention of Mrs. Hawking that snapped Ben to the deed. But if you watch he is speculative but still cajoling until Mrs Hawking is mentioned, then his voice gets all tight and he goes for the ol' cord.

That aside, I think John, his old buddy Ben and the other people from the flight
316 plane are on the other island "Hydra".

I think Caesar is there looking for something very specific in the Dharma Initiative files and he is an agent on the island for either Charles Widmore or Eloise Hawking. I thought he seemed particularly interested in a set of drawings with equation type stuff, so my guess for him would be Eloise.

Illana (the other new regular) I'll guess is also an agent-in-place for one or the other of those characters. We'll temporarily assign her to Charles Widmore.

I think they are all in the time of the Dharma Initiative in the seventies, and that something key to the Island happened then that needs to be fixed or repeated. (Aha, could it be that his is when Eloise and Charles were tricked into exile and they think to change that?) I think Hawking might have been able to calculate not just an entrance for return to the island, but she hoped to be able to send them to a particular time period.

I wouldn't be surprised to find both Mrs. Hawking and Charles Widmore on the Island, younger, as this plays out. There's the battle Charles spoke of, in part, with Caesar helping one side and Illana working to help the other. Most interesting if that is correct.

All speculation, but in under the deadline before this week's episode airs!

Side note: The illustration for this post is a picture of the real philosopher Jeremy Bentham who had himself sort of mummified and put in this case. Kind of gross.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

The Warded Man by Peter V. Brett

There I am last week, minding my own D.O.A. business when my husband calls me at work to let me know a package came for "D.O.A. Librarian".

That sounds rather ominous, but it was okay! He said it appeared to be a book and it was from Random House. It took me a bit to recall I had signed up on one of their blog/forums and said I'd be interested in preview copies.

I sat down to take a peek at it when I got home, noted it was fantasy, and had been written on a SmartPhone...honestly I wasn't expecting it to be too good. Unknown (to me) author...written on a telephone...but WOW.

The Warded Man (known as The Painted Man in Europe) is set in a medieval type world. There are small villages and even smaller clustered communities and large faraway cities.

The story opens with a bang as horns sound to call for help in the aftermath of a demon attack on a small group of homes in a scattered community. Instead of rushing to their aid, Arlen and his family tend their livestock and do their basic daily chores before heading to help.

This is not indifference but survival. Demon attacks are not rare, taking place every night as the underworld denizens rise from the ground at sunset. The families protect their homesteads with "wards" complex and interconnected symbols that keep the demons at bay, until a weakness is found by the relentless attackers. Once they are in, they decimate and devour the hapless.

When this happens, the people aid each other in burning the dead, and quickly rebuilding homes and farms for any survivors. They take in any who could not survive on their own.

Arlen and his family take in two women who have lost their homes and husbands in the latest devastating attack. Arlen, who had been picked on by other boys until he fought back fiercely, wants to fight back against the demons as well. He hates cowering in his home at night and feels it must be possible to fight. His father violently disagrees and insists it is impossible to fight the demons, though nothing, he says, would stop him from fighting for his family.

A few nights after the larger attack, everything is secured for the night except one of the women named Marea has left the family dog tied to a post.

Marea, stricken with guilt, runs to get it and Arlen's mother runs after the woman. They are caught between the protection of the house and the barn. Arlen's mother calls to her husband for help but he is frozen in fear. Marea is torn apart by the demons and Arlen's mother is attacked.

Arlen runs out, with only a bucket for a weapon, and tries to help his mother. Arlen does everything he can to save his mother and himself while his father is seen staring helplessly and uselessly from the safe doorway of the house.

So begins a long journey for Arlen and two other characters, Leesha and Rojer, whose stories alternate with Arlen's. I don't always appreciate alternating narratives but here it worked and I was always happy to find out what happened next to these three great characters, and the interesting side characters who filled their lives.

I don't know when I've read a book so filled with distinctive characters, most very likeable. The few villainous characters are sympathetic at some point in their appearance, no mean feat.

The continuing theme of survival, both of the individual and the society no matter how difficult and nearly impossible runs throughout the narrative. There isn't the question of whether it is worthwhile to live in such conditions you might expect. The question is, can it be better, can people fight back against impossible odds and foes? Can you be determined to do the right thing and win?

Pacing is excellent, the story flows smoothly and ends satisfyingly, despite it being the first in a series. It doesn't leave you hanging, it leaves you wanting more.

I was three fourths of the way through the book before I realized that the "Warded Man" might end up looking very much like "The Illustrated Man" though his tale is vastly different.