Sunday, September 12, 2010

Nancy Drew: Can You Believe This Girl???

If you know me at all, you know that I love children's books.

After all, I'm a children's librarian.

I've never read Nancy Drew.
Everybody has read Nancy Drew.
My mother, for example, adored Nancy Drew.
And it's on the list of 1001 Children's Books You Must Read Before You Grow Up.

So I've been listening to Nancy Drew on the ride to school every morning.
And guffawing.

(Please, please, don't tell my mother.)

Nancy Drew is just too ridiculous to be believed.

With a copyright date of 1930, right in the middle of the American Depression,
here's the first bit of the first Nancy Drew:

"Nancy Drew, an attractive girl of eighteen,
was driving home along a country road
in her new, dark-blue convertible.
She had just delivered some legal papers for her father.

'It was sweet of Dad to give me this car for my birthday,' she thought.
'And it's fun to help him in his work.'"

The plot has Nancy meeting up with two elderly women, with very little income, who are trying to raise a young niece. Nancy learns that the two women had been promised an inheritance from a rich relative, but instead the relative apparently left all his money to a family with two snobbish daughters. There could be a later will, Nancy discovers, and she is off to find it.

Here's a little more:
"When she told Hannah Gruen her plans, the housekeeper warned,
'Don't become too deeply involved in this matter, dear.
In your zeal to help other people, you may forget to be on your guard.'

'I promise to be as careful as a pussycat walking up a slippery roof,'
Nancy assured the housekeeper with a grin."

I think it is all the adjectives that are annoying me.
"The pleasant, slightly plump housekeeper."
Nancy's 'tall and handsome father'.

And Nancy is just so terribly nice.
Refusing to engage in gossip.
Cheerily playing badminton with a child.
Never losing her temper despite a long wait at a department store.
So nice.

Have I become jaded?  Am I being harsh in judging
sweet Nancy to be a goody-two-shoes,
a namby-pamby?

Friday, September 10, 2010

BlogFest, The Hop, and A New Me!


 Let me introduce myself.
Bonjour! Enchanté! Bienvienidos!
I am Debnance at Readerbuzz.
I love to read.
I especially love travel memoirs,
children's books, books about happiness, 
creative nonfiction, and literary fiction.

 I'd love to visit your blog. If you like, follow me and leave a comment and I will hop over and follow you.

I also invite you to:
Befriend me at Goodreads.
Follow me at Twitter.
 Befriend me at Facebook

Blogfest 2010 is hosted by Cinnamon at A Journey of Books.
Be sure to head on over to her blog for the full list
 of over 250 participating Blogfest blogs!

And, the question/topic of the week,
suggested by Anne from My Head is Full of Books,
 from the Hop is:

Post a link to a favorite post or book review
that you have written in the past three months.

I love this post because (1) it reminds me that I am changed, and
(2) it has beautiful pictures.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Review: Mockingjay

"What's with this book?" the checker at Target asked me, as he scanned Mockingjay and then bagged it for me. "Everybody's buying this book!"

I'd held off for six days. But I could not wait any longer. Within an hour, I'd bought it and had settled down nicely into chapter one.

I finished it nine days later. Yes, I could have dashed through it that night, but who really wants to finish that last, final book in the series?

So what do I think? Bottom line, thumbs up or thumbs down?

(I don't like spoilers, so I promise to give away none of the plot for the three of you out there who haven't yet read the book.)

Here goes. It's a safe bet I like the series or what I am I doing buying book three, right? So I like the series. And I thought book three was about as good as one and two.

But I want to say more than I like the series or that book three is about as good as one and two. This is what I want to say: The series made me think about our world and violence and tv and human nature. I'm glad it did. I'm hoping that all the kazillion kids reading this book are also thinking about our world and violence and tv and human nature. I'm pretty sure they are.

Because I'm a school librarian, I feel compelled to add that I honestly would not be crazy about my eight-year-old reading this series. It's violent. Read it first, mom.

If you want to read other reviews of Mockingjay, I've very nicely provided links below. And, if somehow I've skipped your review, feel free to add your link in the comments.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Top Ten Words I Love

Top Ten Words I Love

10. Serendipity
Life as play.

9. Paradox
All truth is paradoxical.
I don't know why.

8. Quirky
My real friends call me this,
not the harsher "crazy".

7. J'aime
In French, this is pronounced "jim" and means "I love".
My husband's name is Jim.
It is fun to say, "J'aime Jim." 

6. Zephyr
I like words that start with "z".

5. Whimsy
I wish we had more of this in life.
I wish we had more of this in algebra.

4. Czechoslovakia
I planned to name my two children
this and "Yugoslavia."
Sadly, I grew up
and named them Jon and Ben.

3. Maranatha
The beautiful word I use in silent prayer.
It means, "Come, Lord Jesus."

2. Books

1. Yes
Studies show that just hearing the word "yes"
makes people happy.

What are the Top Ten Words You Love?

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. This meme was created because we are particularly fond of lists at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week we will post a new Top Ten list complete with one of our bloggers answers. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND sign Mister Linky at the bottom to share with us and all those who are participating. If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Don't worry if you can't come up with ten every time..just post what you can!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Dewey's 24 Hour Readathon!

This was the first event I participated in when I became a blogger and I've loved it so much that I've  participated every time, despite conflicts with conferences and torrential rains and wedding showers.

Here's what you need to know:

Date:  For 24 hours, beginning at 7 am Central Time on October 9th

Activity:  Read and blog, read and blog, read and blog

Prizes:  There will be a contest almost every hour. There will be many, many prizes.

Where to Sign Up:  24 Hour Readathon

For More Info:  Readathon FAQ

Are you signed up? No? What are you waiting for? Go sign up right now. I'll see you at the Readathon!

Friday, September 3, 2010

The Hop and FF: Bienvenido a Readerbuzz!

Bienvenido a Readerbuzz!

I am Debnance.

I love to read.

I especially love travel memoirs,
children's books, books about happiness,
creative nonfiction, and literary fiction.

I'd love to visit your blog.
If you like, follow me and leave a comment
and I will hop over and follow you.

I also invite you to:
Befriend me at Goodreads.
Follow me at Twitter.
Befriend me at Facebook.

And, the question of the week from the Hop is:
Do you judge a book by its cover?

And my response:

I feel horrible admitting to this, but I do.
I judge a book by its cover.

How about you?
Do you judge a book by its cover?

Thank you to Sarah from Sarah Reads Too Much for this question.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Great Picture Books

I read 42 books today.
Picture books.
Good picture books. Great picture books.

A few weeks ago, I ran across a wonderful meme:  What are the ten books that you, as a teacher, could not teach without? I browsed the lists of the participants and then spent most of an evening requesting picture books from the public library.

Here's a photo selection of those I liked best and can't wait to read with the PreK-2nd graders at my school:

Here's a list:
Chalk by Bill Thomson
All Those Secrets of the World by Jane Yolen
Mouse Views: What the Class Pet Saw by Bruce McMillan
Goal! by Mina Javaherbin
Those Shoes by Maribeth Boelts
Hero Cat by Eileen Spinelli
Whoever You Are by Mem Fox
Because a Little Bug Went Ka-Choo! by Rosetta Stone
The Rainbabies by Laura Krauss Melmed
My People by Langston Hughes
My Little Sister Ate One Hare by Bill Grossman
We Had a Picnic This Sunday Past by Jacqueline Woodson
The Hard-Times Jar by Ethel Footman Smothers
Monkey With a Tool Belt and the Noisy Problem by Curtis Monroe
Animal Colors by Beth Fielding
Woolbur by Leslie Helakoski
Walk On! A Guide for Babies of All Ages by Marla Frazee
Clap Your Hands by Lorinda Bryan Cauley
Tough Cookie by David Wisniewski
The Bugliest Bug by Carol Diggory Shields
Posy by Linda Newbery and Catherine Rayner
One by Kathryn Otoshi

Now I'm off to order these for my own school library! Thank you, Read and Refine and Enjoy and Embrace Learning for this wonderful meme!