Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Authors You Need to Read

Lois Lowry is one of those authors that I find incredibly inspiring - how does someone come up with the concepts and then weave those worlds using only words??

Recently I've had her quartet on hold from the library. (They arrived out of order but I read them anyway. I couldn't wait!!) The Giver is the first in the series and I remember buying it and reading when I first started teaching. Then comes Gathering Blue, The Messenger and Son. All of these stand alone as powerful novels.

As they are YA literature they can be read easily in a day but they contain a great deal of substance.

Universal themes such as inclusiveness, the attitude we have towards disability, refugees and rules are presented but never in an obvious or preachy way.

Last night I saw that The Giver has now been made into a movie which is pretty exciting it has great potential, drama, mystery, intrigue but please, please read the book first.

And if you aren't familiar with Lois Lowry get down to your local library or bookstore and grab whatever has her name on it. Number the Stars and Gossamer are 2 other novels of hers that are well worth the read.

She is a 5 star writer in my books and these books are so beautifully written, so real and fantastical at the same time. Gathering Blue also features a 'gifted' stitcher as the main character - what's not to love about that?

The books are ones I would happily pass on to any reader of 12+, they are 'clean', engaging and fast moving.

Read them? What do you think?

love you more than a quartet all read and another addition to my 'must buy myself' list xxxx

Monday, September 1, 2014

week 35

This little one who sculpted a 'Platy-Gator' on the beach with Daddy

and this big one who wanted to be a dalmatian when he was face painted.

love you more than discovering new growth on the first day of Spring xxxx

Friday, August 29, 2014

Reading, More Reading!

A trip to Melbourne and a disposition that means I must be at the airport hours before required has allowed me to make some serious inroads in my (very large!) reading pile.

Also I am trying to watch less TV in the evenings - not none just less.

As I am a fast reader (I think) this allows me to plow through a lot of books, you can expect rather a few reviews in the next wee while.

Speed of Light by Joy Cowley.

This was a return trip home read. The lovely people at Gecko sent this to my NZ address and my mama passed it on via my girls weekend friends! I almost read the whole thing on my 1 hour journey home (another reason to love teen fiction!). I was keen to read it having enjoyed Dunger - which won the NZ Post Book Awards for Children & Young Adults 2014, Junior Fiction category.

I like Joy Cowley. I like that she sets her books in NZ settings that are so familiar to me. This one is set in Wellington and the descriptions are perfect.

The story centres around a family crumbling at the edges and Jeff the youngest son and number lover. Having a number lover myself I do like a character who finds a sense of interest and order in the world of numbers (even though I don't myself). Jeff is a character to like - he struggles with mystery and uncertainty and he longs to hold the crumbling pieces together. Cowley perfectly captures the longing of a child to love parents that are not that loveable and to hold onto hope for a family that is far from it.

The story is slightly supernatural but told in a natural way - if that makes sense. So natural it feels wrong to call it fantasy. I guess the reader will make their own call on that - it will probably be influenced by your own view on spiritual things.

The story reads well, the characters, their pain and their disappointments are convincing. It has a mystery that drives the narrative. The book is both tragic and hopeful and I think it will be one many readers would be able to associate with. Gecko recommends it for 12+ and I would agree though a mature reader of 10 or 11 may well still get a lot from it. It's the kind of book that could be used for great book discussions with older readers.

I like Joy Cowley's style of writing, it tells a story, it captures images but it does it in a 'plain' way. I can see my boys really finding her a readable choice as they grow up.

I also love the cover design. It would be a piece of art I'd be happy to have on my walls. Design by Keely O'Shannessy.

Details: Gecko Press, August 2014 RRP $19.99 NZ, teaching notes are available too.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Make My Week - costumes and fortune cookies

So you have seen the book week costumes I made - very simple but well loved!

And the pictures tell the story for these felt fortune cookies - could be very fun for a table setting don't you think?

Joining in here as always!
 Show & Tell Thursday's

love you more than a snappy project in a time poor week xxx

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Where I'm At

My lovelies - hello there!

So I promised some silence (I know, kind of unlikely to have real silence given my personality!!) and I thought I'd let you know a bit about it.

I am preparing for teaching this class on crafting for the non-crafty and this one about love languages, as part of Laneway Learning in Adelaide.

If you miss the dulcet tones of me being an idiot you can listen to me on this radio interview here. (Yes I did get the number of deaths from the chch earthquake wrong :o( - still learning!). I come on about about 4.30 mins.

I am also preparing for a full day session and a staff meeting session on teaching the performing arts and the new Australian curriculum.

So... you know, feeling busy but that's okay. If you live in Adelaide and want to come to the Laneway Learning classes do come - I'd love you to be there okay?

love you more than an empty day and clean washing xxxx

Monday, August 25, 2014

Week 34

Book Week - it's quite a big thing here.

We had Piglet from Winnie-the-Pooh

and we had Bagheera from Jungle Book

and I had a long weekend in Melbourne and left Daddy and Grandad in charge of getting the animals to school, of course I made the costumes - I didn't trust them with that job!! You missed me didn't you??

love you more than a curly pig tail xxxx

Friday, August 22, 2014

Radio Silence

Choosing to broadcast when the time works - this may be less frequent over the next few weeks - projects are many

do not adjust your sets

love you more than sudden static xxxx