Tuesday, September 30, 2008

I feel like I've met a friend...

I only know his name. I don't believe he's still living. I've bought all kinds of books locally that have his name in them - he and his wife appear to have taught children's literature classes. He has all the old classics and some very good children's books choices - that I have bought for either stock or myself.

I took some stock to our local bookstore that takes books/videos/dvds in trade, and then I went shopping in the mysteries. (My favorite read.)

I found a lot of old mysteries, several in Dover editions, and I bought them. After all, with my trade credit, I only pay 5% of the price. So here I buy $116 worth of books for $6.28.... How could I not gloat over my finds?

And, as I work my way through them, I find the same man who had all those marvelous children's books I grabbed, also collected old British mysteries.

I think we could have had fun chatting if I'd met him before I met his books. As it is, when I read one, I imagine him sitting above, grinning that someone else likes his taste in books!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Book Review: The Smart One and the Pretty One by Claire LaZebnik

As I was reading this book, I thought about how well it would play on the Lifetime channel, if you're familiar with that. It seems like a book meant to be a movie!

This is the story of two sisters who have taken different paths in life. One is a lawyer and spends her time on her job and her contacts connected with that. The other is clothes buyer, who is her own best customer and isn't responsible with her money. They love each other, but they don't visit much.

Then Mom gets cancer and the younger sister moves home (right before she gets evicted). Within a couple of weeks, she is living with her older, more sensible sister.

As might be expected, this is not a smooth transaction. Big sister doesn't want little sister's advice, and vice versa. When big sister snookers little sister into signing a contract that she will stop buying clothes and shoes and other non-essential items, little sister remembers an old, forgotten contract she found while staying with Mom and Dad...

It seems, years ago, Mom had signed a contract with another neighbor saying that their children would get married when they grew up. As big sis was about 8 at the time, she didn't remember a thing about it. But little sis is happy to remind her.

And happy to set her up with Russell - who has already been divorced twice - and isn't big sis's type at all. So she's not enthused when little sis cons her into going to dinner and finds Russell and his friends at the table...

And it gets better from there!

You never know where it's going to go with the two opposite types of sisters, but they do find some common ground before the end of the book, and it's a fun lively read.

Try it, you'll like it!

If you'd like the copy I received to review, leave a comment and send me a note telling me why. I'll be picking someone as the recipient after a few days.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Another book I'm recommending...

If you have not had the opportunity to read the Mutts comics, you've missed out on a real cool cartoon about a cat and dog, their owners, and their friends. It's very authentic to an animal lover, and while Earl is real cute and typical dog, I just love Mooch, the cat. He loves to play with his little pink sock...

Here's the link to the site: http://muttscomics.com/index.asp . You can get the comics daily, just a few weeks late, if they aren't in your paper.

I requested an advance copy of South by Patrick McDonnell. It's the story of a small bird who got left behind when the others migrated because he was sleeping...

Mooch finds him, tells him where the other have gone (south), and then watches the baby bird cry and decides he will have to help.

There are no words in this book, but the illustrations tell the story completely and lovingly.

This would be a lovely gift for a young one who can't read yet, or one that admires graphics, or even an adult like me who enjoys G-rated comics!

This book is going in my personal library, but you should get you a copy, too. Patrick does a lot of good in the animal world, and here is just one more example of his great work.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

New BOGO sale!

Buy a paperback from my Paperbacks - Special Sale category and pay for one, get the cheapest one free!

Here is the link to the category: Paperbacks - Special Sale

The coupon code is: BOGO

There is no limit on the number purchased.

There are 350 paperbacks listed there, maybe a couple will tweak your interest.

This is ONLY catalog this special covers.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Book Review: Eclipse by Richard North Patterson

Henry Holt is bringing out a new book by Richard North Patterson that I had the opportunity to read in advance. I expected Richard North Patterson to engage my interest and keep the story moving - and he did!

A college professor meets a student who really charms him with her intensity and sense of purpose. However, she has a black boyfriend who is going to go "home" to help his people, and she's going with him. So Damon goes on with his life as a professor...

Then, years later, he gets an email from Marissa - who is asking him to help her. Her husband, Bobby, is an outspoken critic of the exploitation of his country by PetroGlobal - who is going after the oil the country has (sound familiar?). The country's autocratic ruler decides to use the eclipse to make an example of why criticism and protest is futile, and kills everyone in the village, including Bobby's father, then puts Bobby in jail and lets Marissa go because she is American.

Damon agrees to defend Bobby, trying to save them both from death, but it's very dangerous in Luandia, and even lawyers can die...

It's a very busy story, has the ring of truth and mirrors actions happening in African nations, as well as other countries with oil...

And you're not really sure exactly what is going to happen until the end.

If you'd like to have this Advance Reader's Edition to check it out, leave me a comment and email me expressing your interest your interest.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

When you want to order a book...

...check to see WHO you are ordering from. I get multiple orders for a single copy that I have because folks visit various sites and try to order more than one copy. That's no problem. But it is when they try to order from The Book Faerie everywhere I list!

When I get orders on more than one site, I have to cancel it on the ones that got ordered on later - and it counts against me!

So my request to you is not just to order - but pay attention to which vendor has it listed. Don't assume one dealer has more copies available - especially on out-of-print books.

Orders are wonderful, but not when they penalize you.

Just a note to those who might not realize we can list on more than one site.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Need a good book for a Christmas gift?

If you like sharing books for Christmas, this would be a very nice one for a child (or an adult child, like me). I intend to keep the copy I bought for my library.

It's titled "Winter's Gift" and is written and illustrated by Jane Monroe Donovan.

Her illustrations are wonderful - very authentic, the mare's look makes you want to cry!

We have an old man, who's wife died earlier in the year, and he's not going to put up a tree or put the star on top that they had done in the past, he's just going to have a quiet Christmas, alone...

And a mare has gotten separated from her herd and is looking for shelter - she can hear wolves. But she can't find anyplace that she could find shelter and finally gave up and laid down, with a little nicker.

She was close to the old man's house, and he went out to check on her, and put her in his barn.

He stayed out there with her and fell asleep. When he woke up in the morning, there she was - with a foal!

And, lo and behold, her foal has a star in the middle of his forehead...

Its beautiful illustrations make it a joy to read. And he wasn't alone at Christmas after all...

Have you ever seen a yucca walking stick?

The center core of the cactus grows several feet tall and has a blossom at the top. The core itself is almost like wood, and works great as a walking stick.

I saw one at the Farmer's Market here in downtown, with feathers and some colorful paint on it at the top, but didn't have the money at the time. Now I want to purchase one and can't find one I like!

I don't want them woodburned, or with inset gems. I just want a plain stick with some leather, a few feathers, maybe some beads and a little bright paint to make it an attractive partner. (Don't go thinking of opposite sex partners - although some would look better with these additions...)

I've searched on the net, but I'm not being successful at finding what I want.

I could just buy the stick and decorate it, but that's no fun - I like having memories of where I got that special item.

So, right now, unless one falls out of the heavens in front me, I'm going to try to find one when we visit Capitan next month. They have a lot of local artists, and maybe one of them plays with the yucca walking sticks. I can hope!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Book Review: A Tale Out of Luck by Willie Nelson with Mike Blakely

My first thought was Willie Nelson wrote a book??? I know he writes songs, but...

I have to admit he did a good job.

This was a very good western that is about a retired Texas ranger and his ranch, his son, and some grievances from the past that aren't resolved yet.

His characters are well-fleshed out, have their own idiosyncrasies, and there is more than one subplot. The cowboys act like cowboys do, they're rough and tough, sometimes people die, but they generally have good hearts - if they remember to use them.

The storyline is believable, keeps your interest, and it ends with an ironic twist that fits well.

If you're not sure I really liked this book, I paid Willie the ultimate compliment - I bought my own copy in hardcover for my library. This is one I'd read again, and I wouldn't be surprised if they made a movie out of it.

If you like Westerns, this should be a good read for you!

Leave me a comment, send me an email and tell me why you'd like this book, and I will choose someone to get this Advance Reader's Copy for free. Share the magic of books!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Sorted Puzzles Today...

That's hard for me to do. I love puzzles. Now, when I will have time to do them is another thing. And my eyes are getting older, so small puzzle pieces don't work so well anymore. So I have a whole box of puzzles going out.

Tomorrow will be more Christmas ornaments. Not sure how many will end up staying. Or how I will store them.

Oh yeah, I forgot I have a big box of teddy bears to sort first. That will be even harder. I've collected them for years, and I hate to give them up, but there's only so much room.

And I'm doing a major job of downsizing. We've taken 9 pickup loads of donations downtown so far.

And there will be more.

I can even see some room in my house now. When I'm done sorting, then I'll have to figure out how to organize it all in good order and easy to see and protected from bugs!

This hoarder is unhoarding...

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Crochet Thread...

OK, I told you I like to crochet. Can you believe I have one whole under-the-bed container full of crochet thread? And I have another container of specialty threads for unusual projects...

I also have lots of Banana Dazzle Aire yarn, and I need another color or two to go with it for an afghan. Unfortunately, no one makes it anymore. It's like looking for an out-of-print book!

Now I'm sorting other odds and ends in that closet - lots of various things that got "stuffed" when we were moving in.

I think Good Start should give me citizen of the year for donations. I think I have three more pickup fulls to go to them!

And my friends are getting little gifts, too.

What the heck, share the largess!

Downsizing is hard, but I can do it - this is proof.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Book Review: Something Wickedly Weird The Wooden Mile by Chris Mould

I had the opportunity to "taste" the first book in a new series for young adults (9-12 years). This one was "wickedly" fun to read!

The illustrations are wonderful, almost caricatures, and really add to the story.

Stanley didn't even know he had an elder uncle, and he certainly didn't know he'd inherit his home when he died! To claim it, he had to go live in it, and that's where he adventures started.

He's not even allowed on the island until he proves he owns the property - so his feet get wet while they read the paperwork...

Then he gets warned by a fish about danger (yes, it's dead and stuffed, but it talked to him).

Everyone goes in at night and never comes out again until morning, why he wonders? When he ventures to stay out too long, his caretaker gives a big lecture and tells him he can't do that, but he still wonders...

Soon he manages to make friends with an odd fellow who turns out to be pirate - and has two friends. They are cobblers now (or so they say), but they tell him about the night problem - there's a werewolf in town...

Of course, the pirates have their own agenda and are planning on using Stanley to as a means to get there. Stanley knows he's being used, but thinks he can hold his own.

You need to read the book to see who wins!

The next book in this series will be: Something Wickedly Weird, The Icy Hand.

To me, this looks like a great new series for boys and girls alike - lots of adventure, unusual things happening, and fun illustrations.

If you'd like to have my Advance Reader's Copy, leave a comment and send me an email. I'll have a drawing and send it to the lucky winner!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Any crafters out there?

I have now finished the very back room and have it cleared and ready for storage. I have decided to make it a home for my yarn tubs. I have tons of yarn, love to crochet with it.

But I also have a living room full of yarn. So I am now sorting my tubs, bags, boxes, projects, etc. in back, and deciding what to keep and what to get rid of.

I have to downsize because I have a blivet of yarn and need to get it to a more manageable level. I also need to be realistic about how long I think I'll live and not keep stuff that I would need to live to be 200 to complete...

Found some kits to donate, then checked to see how they were priced now - and they're not even available anymore. So I set those aside and I will be eBaying them. I sure hope some folks get in a bidding war on them - I could use the money.

The Good Start guys run out to unload Glen's rig now. He says they love him. I told him, no, they love ME - it's all my stuff I'm donating!

I know they can sell it well, some of it is brand new and still in its wrappings. So I'm sharing with my community, helping the poor, and keeping the handicapped employed. Looks like a win win to me. My house is cleaner, my community healthier.

Today I got almost all of the yarn in back sorted and matched up. Have more to do tomorrow. That might take the rest of tomorrow.

But, by Saturday, I should be able to begin reclaiming my couch in the living room - wow, huh?

Only another crafter/hoarder would understand...

Monday, September 1, 2008

Book Review: Exit Music by Ian Rankin

I first ran across Ian Rankin in a book of his short stories - and I found them quite delightful. He has a quick mind, offers you a few weird quirks, and keeps you thinking until the end.

This novel was no different. This is the last case for John Rebus. He's getting ready to retire (but isn't sure he really wants to - what will he do then???). And then a dissident Russian poet gets murdered, apparently in a mugging.

He goes after this case as he has all others. Talk to everyone, look beyond the obvious, never believe all of what you're told (or maybe not even any of it), don't give up, keep trying to solve them all, not just the case you're working on...

Along the way, he meets the son of a man he incarcerated - who is now a cop. He finds out that nothing is quite like it seems. And his partner is looking for another partner to replace even while they are on this case.

The story is tied to the past and the present both. And while Rebus is mourning the end of his job, his partner is looking to the future and promotion.

It keeps you reading, surprises you along the way, and the ending makes you wish for another book! C'mon, Ian, you can't leave us here - what happens next???

If you'd like to have this advance reader's copy I reviewed, leave me a comment and then send me an email to tell me why you'd like to have it!

Eeny Up Above! Jane Yolen, Kathryn Brown (Illustrated by)

Eeny is a mole.  Her sisters are very happy in their home but Eeny is more adventuress.  She goes up and samples all of the seasons of the y...