Congratulations Doret! You’re the Bordertown winner!
Congratulations Doret! You’re the Bordertown winner!
author: Ngugi wa Thiong’o
date: Heinemann, 1987 edition
Njoroge is so excited that it will be possible for him to go to school that he cannot wait to tell with his brother, Kamau. One would expect some sort of conflict from this brother who chooses for himself to learn a trade but, there is none. The boys truly believe each of them will be contributing to Kenya’s future. They embody the hope for this new country as it tussles to free itself from the deep-seated vestiges of colonial rule; roots that go too deep for such naïve thinking.
In this slight book of just over 100 pages, Ngugi manages to build our hopes and expectations in somewhat the same way the Kenyan people’s were. Njoroge is smart and has so much support, there is no reason to believe he will not be successful in life. Kenya had a new leader, a strong middle class it had to succeed, didn’t it?
The complexities of history and of people are well layered in this classic story of the downfall of a government as seen from within. The book should be in all school libraries and would be excellent in any world lit curriculum.
This is my second review for the Africa Reading Challenge.
I sure was going to stop after posting my review of Perfect Shot, but then I started reading the blogs, tweets and newspapers and I just had to reflect on my SundayMorningReads!
I have to say goodbye to Amy at Bowllan’s Blog on the SLJ website. I met Amy through her Writers Against Racism series where I posted my own story. I actually met Amy and presented with her at the National Diversity in Libraries conference back in 2010. She’s one of my few online friends that I’ve actually met in person and that makes her quite special to me! Her energy, intelligence and charm will be missed!
When you reflect on what you’re doing and start to feel like you’re preaching the same message to the same choir and getting no results, one has to wonder who has to make some changes? My blog feeds been given quite a transformation lately, along with a resolution to post comments more often. Who knows what the results will be!
We lovers of books talk about inspiring young people to want to read, but I know firsthand that all it takes is the right reading material matched to the right reader. We honest to goodness have it so easy! Imagine if we were math teachers and had to inspire students to like math! I’ve been thinking about this since responding to a comment lately, how easy it is to get students to read if they’re given the right stuff to read. All they need is the freedom to choose and that comes from availability not only in terms of representing the vast diversity of people who read but in realizing the vast diversity of what teens want to read: magazines, newspapers, manga, non-fiction, graphic novels, almanacs, books of records… They’re not all into novels!
Hey, if you’re a librarian reading this and looking for diversity in what you do, why not try writing about librarians in a non-librarian publication? Let the world know what we do! Enter your piece in the Great Librarian Write Out and win some cash!
Summer for you means hot fun but it’s back to work for me! This week, I’ll begin working at Indiana State University as an Asst. Reference Librarian. Summer for bookies means ALA , BEA, Comic-Con, ChLA, SBCWI or the Mazza Conference in Findlay, OH??? Perhaps you’re a bit more international and headed for the Asian Festival of Children’s Content ? What conferences will you be attending? How do you anticipate them upping your game? JCLC isn’t far away, either!
One new blog I’m really enjoying reading has presented not only a very interesting article by Francisco X. Stork about depression (a topic in his next book) but it also introduced be to Catherine Valdez, a promising new writer.
The heat made it hard for Esther to breathe. It was humid and it felt as if she were breathing in more water than air. Water and stray mosquito wings. She smacked another one off her arm. She cursed the small wings that hummed against her sunburned skin. Esther dug her heels into the ground and pushed back against the tree trunk as she sprung onto her feet. Her toes cringed with pain but she started to walk. She was less likely to get bitten when moving. She wiped off the sweat that edged down the bridge of her nose. Peeling skin stuck to her fingers, leaving behind flesh as pink as peony flowers.
“ Catherine Valdez is a ninth grader currently studying creative writing at Miami Arts Charter School . She is of Hispanic decent. Key factors in her writing are nature and her heritage. Her work has received awards from the Jack London Foundation and The Scholastic Art and Writing Awards of 2012. She has been published twice in creative communication” source
To grow even more new talent is the 7th Annual Brooklyn Lit Match Writing Contest.
The contest is open to high school students who reside in Brooklyn or those who attend a high school located in Brooklyn. Eligible candidates should feel free to turn in their stories, poems, essays, spoken word pieces and raps before the deadline on June 29th. Follow this link for more information.
I have to send a shout out to my youngest in the AirForce today! While I remember the reasons why he serves, I hope he remembers how proud I am of him! For him and all the members of the armed services there are these ways to share books with them today and everyday. I have to say it really gives me pause when people thank our military for protecting our freedoms. I would so love to live in a world where it’s our teachers, librarians, spiritual leaders and others who protect our freedom by empowering us with knowledge and compassion.
book review: Perfect Shot (Romantic Comedy series)
author: Debbie Rigaud
date: Simon Pulse; 2009
main character: London Abrams
My students never want to read this book because of the cover. They’ve told me they don’t want to read about cartoon characters which I suppose translates as “it’s not real enough”. Are romances supposed to be ‘real’?
London is a star volleyball player. In simply giving her this attribute, Rigaud tells us that she is competitive, athletic and a believer in fair play. She’s a good kid, right? But when she gets caught up in somethings outside her element (modeling and romance) she behaves in atypical ways.
London works at a local art supply store with her bestie, Pam, where she meets and crushes on Brent. That crush sets the stage for London becoming involved in a local modeling contest to be a store’s spokesperson and for her ex, Unslick Rick, to really begin to play games with her. Brent seems like a nice enough guy but we don’t know him well enough to know how things will play out with him and London. And, we have no idea what treachery Rick is up to! Add to that ancient animosities from childhood friend Kelly and a not too pleasant mom and you’ve got a story with a lot going on! Too much? Not at all! Rigaud develops things quite well.
There was some unevenness in this debut novel, but not enough to diminish the intrigue that Rigaud builds through the fast past happenings in the storyline. London is easy to like and readers will to want to see her get her man!
A happy ending may not be real but it sure is romantic!
modeling; volleyball; romance