Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Ogre of Oglefort

 Eva Ibbotson’s books twist and tangle fairy tales. So, when I picked up The Ogle of Oglefort, I knew the Ogre wouldn’t be a flesh-eating villain. But, I didn’t expect him to be on the verge of a nervous breakdown! Happily, Ivo, the boy hero, is every bit as brave and resourceful as any orphan should be, and the other characters (a princess, hag, banshee, troll, and mad scientist) are zany and fun.

PS I’ll write about more of her books. She is one of my favorite writers.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Do you ever get cravings? I do, for Jane Austen. I’d say it was a guilty pleasure, but it seems a lot of other readers love her, too. I listen to Nancy Pearl’s reviews on NPR and she recommended Keeping the Castle  (by Patricia Kindl) for Jane Austen fanatics. I read it in one night. Evil stepsisters, two handsome eligible men, a castle falling to ruin, and the need for a rich match to save the family’s crumbing castle. The heroine is a bit too full of herself to see clearly, like most Austen women. I got hooked when Althea’s mouth acts before her brain does. A pumpkin headed, yet very wealthy suitor murmurs, “You’re so beautiful,” and she answers, “And you’re so rich.” You won’t be able to resist this.
Ages: Girl romantics of any age

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Dinosaur! was a big hit in the bookstore (Anderson’s Bookshop)I worked at when it came out in 2000. So, I was happy to stumble across it in the library. It begins quietly. A little boy takes a bath with his plastic dinosaur. But, within a page, they’re joined by a Jurassic cast of pteranodon, iguanodon, stegosaurus and more. What I loved best was when the cartoon creatures morphed into the beautiful artwork Peter Sis is known for. All I can say is,what a way to take a bath!
Ages: 2 and up