Tag Archives: books

Books that Stayed with You – Second Verse, Close to the First

Posting “ten books that have stayed with you” started going around facebook again. I resisted for a bit, but decided to try again, knowing I might have a few of the same answers and a few different. Depending on the day and your mood and your memory, you can answer the same question a thousand different ways.

Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones — I believe this was on my list before. Yes, it was a book first. A perfect humorous fairy tale with a Shakespearian Comedy-type ending. Also, read the Chrestomanci series. Also, anything else by her.

The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein – Because I thought it was going to be as funny and lighthearted as his poetry, and it broke my heart.

Remember Me by Christopher Pike – A ghost has to track down her own killer. I loved the views of the afterlife in this one. The story was also relatively not-weird compared to his usual fare.

Peter Pan by JM Barrie – Didn’t read this until college, which made the reading experience excellent. You can read Peter Pan as someone not quite human, and the ending is that Peter comes back for a Darling child to spirit away every generation.

Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maude Montgomery – I loved the idea that the family mistakenly adopted a girl when they wanted a boy to help them with hard farm labor. Also features hilarious underage drinking. It’s like a Canadian pre-teen “I Love Lucy.”

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by CS Lewis – This is obvious. I still wish I had my own writing pocket dimension where you can visit for years and no time passes in the “real world.”

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens – One of the only classics I read independently as a child. The reason it stayed with me was the image of an old woman in a bridal gown dancing by herself as her house burns down around her.

Hole in my Life by Jack Gantos — A recent read, but I’ve known the story for a while. A Boston children’s author’s memoir of his time in prison.

Cradle and All by James Patterson – When I was ten, my gram told me this book was too mature and I shouldn’t read it. So I waited until she returned it to the library and checked it out. Now I have a thing for religious horror thrillers.

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett – I love Mary and Dickon, but Colin was the one I was most fascinated with. Colin’s father was so grief stricken by his wife’s death that he protected his son fiercely. So much so that Colin hardly ever saw the sun and couldn’t walk on his own, though there was nothing physically wrong with him.

Also, be proud KidLit writers: Almost all the books people said influenced them were written for children. Keep doing good work for young people. 

Boston/New England Area Events

I always find a lot of great events around Boston, many of them book/writing-related. I always forget to invite people until the last minute, so have some Event Round-ups!

So here are some things on the calendar:

Bookbuilders Bowling Night

Where: Sacco’s Bowling Heaven in Davis Square

When: April 10th from 6-8pm

Cost: $6, and pre-register

Why?: Networking and bowling! Only $6. And bowling!

https://www.bbboston.org/  Continue reading

INDIES: How Independent Publishers & Bookstores are Surviving & Thriving in Today’s Market

This was a panel put on as part of Bookbuilders of Boston‘s Spring Workshops. It was hosted at Emerson College. Well worth attending; the cheese plate was delicious.

Our panelists were: 

The affable Ned Lomigora, a sales rep at Zeeen, an online promotional platform for authors that especially works with Indies. He specializes in analytics and digital media. He’s also a presenter and contributor for WordPress Boston.

The illustrious Dale Szceblowski, the General Manager at Porter Square Books in Cambridge, one of the hubs of the literary scene in the Boston area. He’s been in the book-buying and book-selling business for 30 years. Vice President of the New England Booksellers Association.

And the perspicacious Judith Rosen, a Senior Bookselling Editor and the New England correspondent at Publishers Weekly for 15 years. Previously she has worked in marketing and publicity for trade publishers, Wordsworth Books, and wrote a regular column for the Boston Herald. Continue reading

Books Recs for Strong Girls

A school librarian I know has two 8th grade girls looking for female protagonists akin to the kick-assery of Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games.

I asked my friends for YA recs with strong heroines. This is what I have so far.

Contemporary
Shrinking Violet – Danielle Joseph
Tokyo Heist – Diana Renn
The Good Braider – Terry Farish
Nowhere Girl AJ Paquette

Historical
Bloody Jack – LA Meyer
The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle – Avi
Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery
Scarlet – AC Gaughen
Climbing the Stairs – Padma Venkatraman
Catherine called Birdy – Karen Cushman
Love in the Haight – Susan Carlton

Fantasy
Song of the Lioness – Tamora Pierce
Graceling Realm – Kristin Cashore
The Chaos Walking Trilogy – Patrick Ness
Howl’s Moving Castle – Diana Wynne Jones

Continue reading

Music and Poetry, Truth and Romance: The BPL

The Boston Public Library

As part of my company’s goings on, we had a lunch tour of the McKim building (1895) of the Boston Public Library. Our tour guide was the lovely Ms. Nancy Stutzman. You could tell she loved the library and that she loved talking about the library everyday. We, being book people, were all over it.

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My impression of the tour was that it would be of the library and it’s services (which I also would have been interested in), but we didn’t even go near the addition that was built in the 1970’s. Instead I got a beautiful history of books and architecture that makes me want to live there all over again. It was gorgeous. I was nerding all over the place.

I want to work there so I can go inside and explore all the locked rooms and nooks and crannies. Not get glares from the guard for touching locked door handles. Continue reading