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Reflections on the #AtoZChallenge

by Donna Huber For the A to Z Challenge, I discussed different book genres/categories. Each day, I gave a few details about the genre/catego...

May 20, 2011

Follow Friday

So I'm trying out another weekly meme. Let me know if you like it or not. It's a recap of sorts for my week of reading. I might play around a bit and add in a little video to my blog with these weekly memes. Would you watch it?

My review for the week: 

Buddy's TailBuddy's Tail by K. Anne Russell
If you are looking for a book to enjoy with your elementary aged child this summer (have you signed up for your library's summer reading program?) I recommend giving this book a try. I give it 4 tail shakes (ok, that was my attempt at funny). Also check out Anne's website for instructional material -

Reading on my Nook:

Lethal Remedy (Prescription for Trouble)Lethal Remedy (Prescription for Trouble) by Richard L. Mabry

I received my Nook on Monday and already love it. I've played several games of Sudoku, but also started reading my ARC from It is kind of ironic that I am reading a fictional tale about an experimental drug trial, when I'm also reading a non-fiction book on why we shouldn't vaccinate our kids.

Listening to:

It Had To Be YouIt Had To Be You by Susan Elizabeth Phillips

Not sure if I'm going to make it through this audio book. I can't remember why I thought I might like it. It is off to a very slow start. I'm on the 4th chapter and if the story doesn't start moving soon I might call it quits. I'm taking suggestions for my next audio book choice.

In my hands (traditional printed books):

The Priest's GraveyardThe Priest's Graveyard by Ted Dekker

This is such a phenomenal read. I should finish it up this weekend. Unfortunately you won't see my review until sometime in June when I am the featured Little Known Blog. I'm just going to go ahead and tell you - get your copy NOW, you won't regret it.

Vaccine-nation: Poisoning the Population, One Shot at a TimeVaccine-nation: Poisoning the Population, One Shot at a Time by Andreas Moritz

I'm reading a little each day so I should eventually finish it. I just noticed the price on for this book. Only a couple of chapters in and I don't think you should waste your money. It has the feel of an infomercial that plays on late night TV. 

Question of the week:

What are 5 quirky habits or facts about you?

  1. I don't like my food to touch, unless it is food that is meant to be mixed together (ie chicken pot pie). Chinese food is the only exception.
  2. I love to cook, but I hate touching raw meat.
  3. My guilty pleasure is reading Twilight fanfiction
  4. I'm kind of anti-technology, but I got a smartphone and a Nook this weekend (use the Nook a lot, the phone not so much).
  5. I will read horrible and scary stuff in a book, but I won't watch a horror movie.

May 17, 2011

An animal tale that isn't too sad: Buddy's Tail by K. Anne Russell

by Donna Huber
Buddy's Tail
April 2011; 978-1456411954
audio, ebook, print (178 pages); children's

After signing up with Book Blogs, I started receiving emails about books for review and one of them happened to be a 4th-grade level book. Though I typically stay far away from animal stories (I was traumatized by Old Yeller as a child), I chose to review Buddy's Tail for a couple of reasons. One, I have a niece that will be entering 4th grade in the fall. Two, I can't really remember what I read as a 4th grader, but I sure haven't recognized the titles my niece and nephew talk about. Three, on a related note, I wanted to have a book that I could talk to my niece and nephew about - my niece isn't really into books due to a slight reading disability, but my nephew loves books. I am really glad I chose to review it. It was a really good read.

Like I said, I can't really remember what I read when I was their age (I guess this might have been the age I was reading The Bobbsy Twins). When I received it in the mail. I remember thinking it was kind of long for a children's book (I have adult books that are only 10 - 20 pages longer). I mentioned it Mom (who has worked with kids all her life) and she reminded me that kids are reading Harry Potter at this age. 

The summary of the book pretty much tells you everything about the book so there were no surprises. I prepared myself for the dogs to die. It was a little sad, but since their story continues after death, it wasn't like they disappeared. Also, there isn't a lot of human interactions to make me feel attached to the dogs on that level. I did get a little teary eyed at the end, but I won't spoil for you.

Buddy's Tail would be great to use in a classroom when studying the southwest US as there were many geographically specific references. I was a little disappointed with the stereotyping that Russell used with the dogs. A chihuahua that "speaks" Spanish, lives with a Hispanic family and likes Taco Bell seemed contrite. Maybe 4th graders are assumed by it, but I thought it condoned stereotyping. The book is also good for a vocabulary lesson. I'll admit that I had to look up a couple of terms - granted they were architectural terms. Again, the southwest influence of language was present which would easily lead to discussions of sense of place. Russell has a website with additional classroom tools. The book (which I think this was supposed to be the main point) deals with animal neglect and responsibility of having a pet - lessons a child should learn. This is the fourth reason I wanted to review this book. In the overview that came in the email announcement, it was mentioned that the book was to teach children about animal cruelty - I was curious about how the subject would be handled to be age appropriate. I thought Russell did a good job. I think in the back my mind I thought it might push for vegetarianism or more extreme PETA-like propaganda, but it didn't. Like I said it touched more on being a responsible pet owner.

I would recommend this to teachers and parents (it would make a good summer read for all those summer reading programs). For the parents: what are your kids reading? For my readers without young kids: what books did you read as a child?

Buy Buddy's Tail at Amazon

Donna Huber is an avid reader and natural encourager. She is the founder of Girl Who Reads and the author of how-to marketing book Secrets to a Successful Blog Tour.

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May 16, 2011

It's Monday! What are you reading?

It’s Monday!  What Are You Reading is weekly meme hosted by Book Journey to tell everyone what you have read or planning to read. If you would like to join in or see other blogs participating click on the icon above.

I had a good weekend reading. Here is what is on my plate this week:

I'm about half way through it after starting on Friday night. If I hadn't had somewhere to be on Saturday morning, I might have stayed up all night reading. After just 20 pages, I thought this might just be the best book I have ever read. My blog is going to be the June feature for Little Known Blogs and I will be posting my review there (I post a link on my blog when it is up).

I haven't made it very far into this one. My opinion of it might be a bit biased, but I am really trying to read it with an open mind. When the titles was sent to me by email I choose to review it because I like to see different opinions on a subject. It might be a few more weeks before this review goes up.

This book is my first request from My Nook is suppose to be delivered today so hopefully I will be able to load it on there. It sounded good. It is a Christian fiction novel dealing with medicine and government conspiracy/cover up. 

It Had To Be YouIt Had To Be You by Susan Elizabeth Philips

I'm listening to this book this week. Not sure if it will be something I like or not, but thought I would give it a try none-the-less. 

Okay, that is my round up of what I'm reading this week. A peek at a review that will post later this week:

Buddy's TailBuddy's Tail by K. Anne Russell

This was good book. A bit sad (it involves animals so that was a given) but not overly so and has a sweet message. I look forward to sharing this book with my niece and nephew.

What are you reading this week?