Thanks for stopping by. I’m having a very happy summer and I hope you are too.
First, I want to tell you about my favorite book of the week. It didn’t start out that way. In fact, I thought it was dull and quite slow at the beginning. I considered stopping, but it’s an up-coming book club selection so I felt obligated to keep going. Its a good thing I did. By the half-way point I was enjoying it a bit more and by the end, I loved it.
News Of The World by Paulette Jiles is the story of Captain Jefferson Kidd, a seventy-one-year-old man who travels the small towns of northern Texas in 1870 reading national newspapers. The Captain’s customers are the people of these frontier towns who are willing to pay 10 cents to hear about what’s going on in the rest of the world. Its an interesing life and the Captain is well-known and respected.
The Captain’s life changes when the U.S, Army pays him $50 in gold to return a ten-year-old girl to her family in San Antonio. The army rescued her from a Kiowa tribe that had captured her four years earlier. Reluctantly, the Captain agrees. The girl does not remember anything except her Kiowan family. She speaks no English and tries often to run away back to her tribe. The Captain is very wise and quite patient as he attempts to earn his $50 and in doing so, her trust. This was a very satisfying story with a conclusion that was inevitable although not predictable. I hightly recomend it.
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I read the graphic-novel version of the award-winning book The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini. Its set in Afghanistan and is the story of an unlikely friendship between two boys. When I first read the book several years ago I was deeply touched by the story. Now, with the graphic version, I could “reread” this enjoyable book again, but in a different way. Its a story that should be shared by all ages. This graphic-novel is bringing the book to a new group of readers. (My local librarian is very happy with it’s circulation numbers among teen readers.) The illustrators did a wonderful job of interpreting the original story. Even if you aren’t normally a graphics’ fan, check this one out.
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I finally finished reading Kitchens of the Great Midwest by J. Ryan Stradal. It’s the kind of book that, on one hand is a great story, but on the other hand made me very hungry. Each chapter is devoted to one particular dish along with another segment of the story of Eva Thorvald. It’s a touching story of how Eva was raised alone by her father who had an absolute love of food. Eva absorbed that and when she grew up she became a celebrity chef reflecting the foods of Minnesota and the Midwest. What made her unique was a secret supper club that could pop up anywhere. Everyone wanted to be in on these amazing feasts. All of this made an iteresting story with yummy-food and a good sense of humor.
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Today I want to tell you about a place where we have spent many happy hours this summer with our four-year-old grandson. It’s called The Children’s Museum. It’s located in the next town over from us, Santa Rosa. There is both an indoor area and an outdoor area.
As you can see in the picture above, the indoor area has two floors of interesting and fun, hands-on activities. There is a train set in addition to the trains going around overhead, a general store, a restaurant where you can cook a meal, a puppet theater and a gian bubble room. I’m only telling about the things our little guy likes. There’s a lot more.
The outdoor area has a full-sized helicopter and a full-sized tractor and garden to match. That’s fun, but our budding engineer/plumber loves the water area. There are giant sinks and pvc-pipes so he can devise his own water scupture. It’s amazing to watch. The little river next door even has fish (in glass tubes) you can catch. There’s a lot more to see and do but you get the idea. I love the concept of a museaum just for children, don’t you? My sister tells me there is one near where she lives in Anaheim and I’m sure other parts of the country have them as well. It’s a great place to be if you are four or actually for an aging Nana.
That’s it for me this week. I hope you have a great week ahead. Happy Reading.