Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Y is for Yellowhammer

This is an Alabama Alphabet written by Carol Crane. Each letter is illustrated by Ted Burn that really captures the subject of the letter. I found it by looking at library catalog.  It's call letters are E 973 DIS (from Green Free Library in Wellsboro, PA). As a former teacher,. it is always interesting to find something new for children.

Each letter has a short poem - which could be read aloud for non-readers while the picture was shown or read by younger readers.  For older readers or adults there is a paragraph or more about something or someone from Alabama.

A Yellowhammer is the state bird and is also called the Common Flicker.  Alabama has been the "Yellowhammer State" since the Civil War.  The gray uniforms of the Confederate soldiers of Huntsville, Alabama had bits of yellow on the sleeves, coattails, and collars.  When they rode past soldiers in Hopkinsville in the state of Kentucky, someone yelled out, "Yellowhammer" twice, then "flicker, flicker" and the name soon was used for all Confederates from the state.

One of the best things about this book, is that there is a 20 question quiz at the end, which would save time for a teacher who could use it to find out if her class was listening.

This book would be a wonderful addition to a classroom from kindergarden to fourth or fifth grade when students are learning about states.  I did not know about "Ivy Green" which is where Helen Keller lived as a child. 

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Naughty or Nice Movie

Naughty or Nice is a Hallmark movie.  It is the story of Krissy Kringle who finds the Naughty Book left at her house by Santa Clause.  She lives on Candy Cane Lane and has mail meant for Santa delivered to her. She looks in the book and finds out what naughty things people have done.

It takes talking to her parents to find out that she can find nice things out also.

As with Hallmark movies at Christmas time, this one has a happy ending.  She gives the book back to Santa and becomes engaged to her boyfriend.

I love watching Hallmark movies and learn something new each time I watch one.  I will be looking forward to watching this one again.

Name Challenge 2013

Between January 1 and December 31, 2013, read one book in each of the following categories:
  1. A book with up or down (or equivalent) in the title:The Top-Flight fully-Automated Junior High School Girl Detective by E. W. Hildick
  2. A book with something you'd find in your kitchen in the title:  Buttons and Bones by Monica Ferris
  3. A book with a party or celebration in the title: One Hex of a Wedding by Yasmine Galenorn
  4. A book with fire (or equivalent) in the title: Kiss of Fire by Rebecca Ethington
  5. A book with an emotion in the title: Cat Spitting Mad by Shirley Rousseau Murphy
  6. A book with lost or found (or equivalent) in the title: How to Lose a Tooth by E. C. Stilson
The book titles are just suggestions, you can read whatever book you want to fit the category.

Other Things to Know

  • Books may be any form (audio, print, e-book).
  • Books may overlap other challenges.
  • Books may not overlap categories; you need a different book for each category.
  • Creativity for matching the categories is not only allowed but encouraged.
  • You do not have to make a list of books before hand.
  • You do not have to read through the categories in any particular order.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Baby For Christmas

A Baby For Christmas by Joanna Sims is a Harlequin Special Edition.  Captain Luke Brand is a wounded Marine who comes home for Christmas early.  He needs to make amends with the widow of his identical twin brother.  His brother was an Army ranger.   A small black kitten with golden eyes was found by the man who drove him to the Brand ranch and Luke decides to call the kitten Ranger because black and gold are the Rangers' colors.

Sophia is pregnant with Daniel's son, who was conceived on a visit he made home when there were no condoms in the house.  He did not know Sophia was pregnant when he was killed.

Luke has been in love with Sophia from the first time he saw her.  Sophia falls in love with him during the time they spend together before the rest of the Brands come home.  It takes time before they are willing to admit their love for each other.  It takes Luke's mother and a letter that Sophia finds to get her to tell him how she feels.

The baby does not make an appearance until the New Year and Luke gets to be in the delivery room during the birth.  Luke proposes with his grandmother's ring that his mother had with her.  Sophia does not say "yes" until Luke says he will not re-enlist as she does not want to lose another husband in a war.

I love the descriptions of the house and have to admit I have a soft spot when it comes to kittens.  As with other Harlequin books, the description of the main male character is very specific and in this case even includes Luke's scars.  This was an easy book to read.

I had on some of Hallmark's Christmas movies while I was reading but could not tell you what I was watching.

Animal Challenge New

Since I have read 6 books for 2012, I will continue for 2013, here.
1.  A Novel Way to Die by Ali Brandon
2.  Cat Spitting Mad by Shirley Rousseau Murphy
3.  What the Cat Saw by Carolyn Hart
4.  Cat Laughing Last by Shirley Rousseau Murphy
5.  One Hot Murder by Lorraine Bennett
6.  The Big Kitty by Claire Donally
7.  Cat Trick by Sofie Kelly

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Alphabet Challenge

"Q" Clearance by Peter Benchley

Timothy Burnham is a speechwriter for the president.  He receives an upgrade due to time in office which includes "Q" Clearance.- which means he has access to top-secret atomic information. he gains power and a paper shredder.  Most of all the President of the United States feels that Timothy is the one man who speaks the truth.  Burnham is suddenly targeted by Soviet spies.

This is a story of a man who uses vitamins to keep sober and who has allergies and needs sugar to keep from having a hypoglycemic attack.  His wife throw him out of the house after finding street people and a bug in their car and then files for Divorce.  Burnham likes to play squash and meets Eva who is a nutritionist and the daughter of a spy (which he is not aware of).  Timothy falls in love with Eva.

This is an easy book to read.  It shows some of the behind the scenes at the White House.  I could imagine that meetings with the Cabinet could get boring and the President could fall asleep and have someone awaken him as Timothy does.  I love Timothy's secretary finding out things from other secretaries and telling him about tapes.  These tapes help him get back at the man who taped them.
It is an older book which I found in the Wellsboro Public Library.  I enjoyed reading this book.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Cozies 2013

I will be participating again.  Level 3 - Super Sleuth - Read 13 or more books  
As I read more than 13 this year.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Christmas Challenge

Monday, November 19, 2012 through Sunday, January 6, 2013 (Twelfth Night or Epiphany).
Candy Cane - read 1 book
Mistletoe - read 2-4 books
Christmas Tree - read 5 or 6 books (this is the fanatic level...LOL!)
*Additional levels:

Fa La La La Films - watch a bunch or a few Christmas's up to you!
Visions of Sugar Plums - read books with your children this season and share what you read

*additional levels are optional and must be done in addition to a reading level
    I will try Mistletoe level and Fa La La La Films

    Wednesday, November 14, 2012

    Barrys Tale

    Barry's Tale is a novella by Lawrence M. Schoen I went to  and read the pdf file.  I found out about this from a post card that was at a display at 2012 Philcon (convention of Philadelphia Science Fiction Convention.  Lawrence is better known for creating the Klingon Language.

    Conroy owns a company called Buffalogic, Inc.  He was a hypnotist and is a foodie.  He goes to Colson's World for a festival which features all types of BBQ.  There he sees a girl he last saw when he was 19 named Bethany Colson.  She looks the same as she did then.  With her is a young girl named Gel.

    Reggie, a Buffalo dog or buffalito was with Conroy.  Buffalitos can eat anything but they will not eat humans and they produce oxygen instead of CO2 when they fart.

    Gel and Reggie get into an area where a Thoat is and the Thoat feels threatened and lunges for them.  Gel makes the animal disappear.  She has made other things disappear also.  The problem is she cannot control this and Conroy feels hypnosis may help.  It turns out the things are not destoryed as Conroy thought but moved elsewhere.  Gel is part Plenum and part human, he discovers.

    Barry of the title is one of the mascots of the festival - it is a stuffed bison toy.  It turns out to be the key to keeping Gel alive.

    I had not read any of Dr. Schoen's other works.  I enjoyed reading this.  I have been "hypnotized" which in my case was more playing along, I believe than real hypnosis.  The process is explained and I love the idea of another race that looks human because they are half human.  The Plenum are usually found in pairs and are capable of teleportation.

    If I may quote from the postcard:
    "take one mesmerizing rogue and an adorable, flatulent pet
                             add a barbecue competition....
                      american bison and martian thoats...
                  a child with the power to destroy a world...
             an old man with a secret that could rock humanity'...
          a woman from collage who hasn't aged in fifteen years...
    alien beings with instantaneous, galaxy-wide teleportation....
                                        and a plushie!"

    How can one resist an advertisement such as that!

    Sunday, November 4, 2012

    November A to Z

    Nightshade on Elm Street by Kate Collins shows lighted windows which means that the buildings have working electricity.  I am grateful that we did not lose any power as my husband uses an oxygen concentrator and a C-Pac machine.  Since I have friends who live in the areas that Sandy hit, I hope they all get power back soon and have warm places to stay.

    This book is the latest book in the Flower Shop Series.  Pryce's girlfriend is missing and he calls Abby and Marco to investigate her disappearance.  When a body is found on the beach near where Pryce lives on Elm Street, it is thought to be her.  Meanwhile, back at the Flower Shop, Marco's mother starts bringing in food to feed the customers.  Abby is trying to have a bridal shower the way she wants it not the way the others in her life want.  Jillian is pregnant and does not want Abby to tell anyone - though she is always throwing up.  I don't want to say too much as it is more fun to read the book.

    I look forward to finding out what kind of wedding Abby and Marco have and where.  The series is a fun one to follow.  I did not read the first books in order but thing it would be easier to read them in order.  I will give this book five stars on Goodreads.