New Releases 9/29/14 Recommendations

Welcome to the end of September and the new and recommended edition of my blog.  Thank you for stopping by for a visit. Enjoy! Please read to the very end (or at least scroll) for a wonderful and haunting piece of fiction.
This week my choices may surprise you. In my opinion we should enjoy, learn and share reading. My recommendations  include a children’s series that is fun and should be shared with your young ones. I will share one of my absolute favorite series of books for children.
I have 2 non-fiction recommendations. The first will educate, expose and bring awareness. 
Dork Diaries 8: Tales from a Not-So-Happily Ever After By Rachel Renee Russell. Available September 29, 2014. (of course you dorks!) 
Nikki Maxwell’s favorite fairy tales get dork-tastic twists in the eighth book of the #1 New York Times bestselling Dork Diaries series. After a bump on the head in gym class on April Fool’s Day, Nikki has a wild dream in which she, her BFFs Chloe and Zoey,her crush Brandon, and mean girl Mackenzie all end up playing the roles of some familiar classic fairy tale characters. Of course, the stories don’t go quite as expected—because they each have a very special Dork Diaries spin.
How can you not fall in love with a series that has a book 3 ½? Dork Diaries 3 1/2: How to Dork Your Diary And be on the lookout for more dorkiness available three days later. This one is a “Make your Own Book.” I think every reader young and old should participate in our own dorky diary then share an excerpt. It will be a hoot! Dork Diaries OMG!: All About Me Diary! 

Not new but one of my favorites and I think this is a delightful series for children. 

Bedtime for Frances The talented Russell Hoban’s Frances Books along with Lillian Hoban and Garth Williams created Frances.

I love the charming sweetness of the prose and the enchanting illustrations. In this first Frances book, the little badger adroitly delays her bedtime with requests for kisses and milk, and concerns over tigers and giants and things going bump in the night. Long a favorite for the gentle humor of its familiar going to bed ritual, Bedtime for Frances is at last available with the warmth of full color enriching Garth Williams’s original nuanced and touching art. ‘Here is the coziest, most beguiling bedtime story in many a day.’—Kirkus Reviews

Political Order and Political Decay: From the Industrial Revolution to the Globalization of Democracy by Francis Fukuyama. Available September 30, 2014. 

The second volume of the bestselling landmark work on the history of the modern state. Volume two is finally here, completing the most important work of political thought in at least a generation. Taking up the essential question of how societies develop strong, impersonal, and accountable political institutions, Fukuyama follows the story from the French Revolution to the so-called Arab Spring and the deep dysfunctions of contemporary American politics. 

He examines the effects of corruption on governance, and why some societies have been successful at rooting it out. He explores the different legacies of colonialism in Latin America, Africa, and Asia, and offers a clear-eyed account of why some regions have thrived and developed more quickly than others. 

And he boldly reckons with the future of democracy in the face of a rising global middle class and entrenched political paralysis in the West.

A sweeping, masterful account of the struggle to create a well-functioning modern state, Political Order and Political Decay is destined to be a classic. 

The Origins of Political Order: From Prehuman Times to the French Revolution: Virtually all human societies were once organized tribally, over-time most developed new political institutions which included a central state that could keep the peace and uniform laws that applied to all citizens. Some went on to create governments that were accountable to their constituents. 
We take these institutions for granted, but they are absent or are unable to perform in many of today’s developing countries—with often disastrous consequences for the rest of the world.

Francis Fukuyama, author of the bestselling The End of History and the Last Man and one of our most important political thinkers, provides a sweeping account of how today’s basic political institutions developed.
Beginning with politics among our primate ancestors The Origins of Political Order:  draws on a vast body of knowledge—history, evolutionary biology, archaeology, and economics—Fukuyama has produced a brilliant, provocative work that offers fresh insights on the origins of democratic societies and raises essential questions about the nature of politics and its discontents. 

The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person’s Guide to Writing in the 21st Century by Steve Pinker. Available September 30, 2014. 

Why is so much writing so bad, and how can we make it better? Is the English language being corrupted by texting and social media? Do the kids today even care about good writing? Why should any of us care? 

In The Sense of Style, the bestselling linguist and cognitive scientist Steven Pinker answers these questions and more. Rethinking the usage guide for the twenty-first century, Pinker doesn’t carp about the decline of language or recycle pet peeves from the rule books of a century ago. 

Instead, he applies insights from the sciences of language and mind to the challenge of crafting clear, coherent, and stylish prose. In this short, cheerful, and eminently practical book, Pinker shows how writing depends on imagination, empathy, coherence, grammatical know how, and an ability to savor and reverse engineer the good prose of others.
He replaces dogma about usage with reason and evidence, allowing writers and editors to apply the guidelines judiciously, rather than robotically, being mindful of what they are designed to accomplish. 

Filled with examples of great and gruesome prose, Pinker shows us how the art of writing can be a form of pleasurable mastery and a fascinating intellectual topic in its own right.

A Sudden Light: A Novel by Garth Stein. Available September 30, 2014.

The bestselling author of The Art of Racing in the Rain presents a long-awaited new novel in which a boy trying to save his parents’ marriage uncovers a vast legacy of family secrets. 

In the summer of 1990, fourteen-year-old Trevor Riddell gets his first glimpse of Riddell House. Built from the spoils of a massive timber fortune, the legendary family mansion is constructed of giant whole trees and is set on a huge estate overlooking Seattle’s Puget Sound. 

Trevor’s bankrupt parents have begun a trial separation, and his father, Jones Riddell, has brought Trevor to Riddell House with a goal: to join forces with his sister, Serena, dispatch the ailing and elderly Grandpa Samuel to a nursing home, sell off the house and property for development, divide up the profits, and live happily ever after. 

But as Trevor explores the house’s secret stairways and hidden rooms, he discovers a spirit lingering in Riddell House whose agenda is at odds with the family plan. Only Trevor’s willingness to face the dark past of his forefathers will reveal the key to his family’s future. 

Spellbinding and atmospheric, A Sudden Light is rich with unconventional characters, scenes of transcendent natural beauty, and unforgettable moments of emotional truth that reflect Garth Stein’s outsized capacity for empathy and keen understanding of human motivation—a triumphant work of a master storyteller at the height of his power. 

If you haven’t read The Art of Racing in the Rain I can only recommend you read this heart-wrenching and funny book told through the eyes of Enzo. 

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Deconstructing Lila, Available 9/23/14 Buy It!

I love a great romance novel. I enjoy getting caught up in the journey to a happily ever after. 

In Deconstructing Lila, Shannon Leigh had delivered the enjoyment and escape into a well written novel. 

Deconstructing Lila (Entangled Select) Available September 23, 2014.

Preservationist Lila Gentry returns to her small Texas hometown to restore the famous Chisholm Trail whorehouse where her great-great-grandmother was a madam in the 1880s. On her agenda is winning back Jake, the one that got away. But how do you rope a man who doesn’t want to be wrangled?

Jake lives by one creed:  Keep it simple. His ex showing up in town complicates his life and makes him think about things he’d rather forget.
When Lila’s restoration project is threatened before it even begins, she turns to Jake for help. Working together stirs up old feelings, but while Lila and Jake always sizzle between the sheets—or wherever the moment takes them—it will involve some sweet-talking and finesse to bring these two together.
  
Shannon Leigh’s Deconstructing Lila is a breath of fresh air. She writes with an easy style and draws you into the world so easily you don’t even realize your obsession until it is 3 a.m. and you are saying ‘just one more chapter’.
Leigh delightfully blends a traditional modern romance with historically accurate Texas and a second love story. Lila has returned to the home town, a past she has left behind and an ex husband.
 
Lila’s great-great grandmother, ran a brothel called Miss Pru’s house. Someone sent Pru’s journal to Lila. She is motivated and intrigued.  And the handsome Jake is a target along with rebuilding Pru’s house into a day spa. She is determined, to rebuild Pru’s house and win over Jake.
 
“It appeared her job in Hannington had taken on a new twist.
Win back estranged husband. Make the town like her again. And find out what
happened to one Prudence MacIntosh and one Luke Pierce.”
 
As Lila forges ahead to build a happily ever after, Pru speaks to her great-granddaughter through her old diary, revealing her own life and wisdom/lessons on how to attract a man and make oneself desirable. 
 
 
Lesson #14 Silent words conveyed with the eyes are as powerful as those spoken.
Lesson #6 Stand up for yourself. Do not let folk railroad you or make you feel bad. Have pride in who you are and what you do, and the people trying to bring you down to their level will admire you. So will your man.
 

This is a romance so we know a happily ever awaits, but the journey is a delight.  For other books by Ms. Leigh see my review of Forbidden Kiss.

 

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New Releases 9/9/14 Recommended Books

Hello My Friends! Of all the books being released this week – here is what I think are the most awesome. The awesomest. Anyway, I recommend the following books.  Enjoy!

Horton and the Kwuggerbug and more Lost Stories  by Dr. Seuss & Charles D. Cohen Available September 9, 2014 $9.49. 
 A new Dr. Seuss book! This follow-up to The Bippolo Seed and Other Lost Stories features familiar Seussian faces and places—including Horton the Elephant, Marco, Mulberry Street, and a Grinch—as well as an introduction by renowned Seuss scholar Charles D. Cohen. 

Seuss fans will learn more about Horton’s integrity, Marco’s amazing imagination, a narrowly avoided disaster on Mullbery Street, and a devious Grinch. With a color palette enhanced beyond that of the magazines in which the stories originally appeared, this new volume of “lost” tales is a perfect gift for young readers and a must-have for Seuss collectors of all ages!

Horton the Elephant, Marco, and a Grinch return in this rousing recovery of four long-lost stories by the immortal Dr. Seuss!

Most of these entertaining tales appeared in Redbook magazine in the early fifties, but none have not been published since. Respected Seuss scholar Charles D. Cohen offers context to these rediscovered manuscript treasures in a buoyant introduction, making this picture book a gem for readers from four to eight to eighty and beyond. 

If you love Dr. Seuss (and who doesn’t?) why not get The Bippolo Seed and Other Lost Stories (Classic Seuss)  and a marvelous book from 1973  Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are? (Classic Seuss)

 

 

“When you think things are bad, when you feel sour and blue, you should do what I do!”

 

So begins the terrific advice of the wise old man in the Desert of Drize. This classic book provides the perfect antidote for readers of all ages who are feeling a bit down in the dumps. Thanks to Dr. Seuss’s trademark rhymes and signature illustrations, readers will, without a doubt, realize just how lucky they truly are.

Holly Black and Cassandra Clare TOGETHER with a new series.The Iron Trial (Book One of Magisterium) (The Magisterium) The two bestselling series authors: Holly Black (The Spiderwick Chronicles) and Cassandra Clare (The Mortal Instruments Trilogy) create a wonderful story about Callum Hunt, a boy who really, really, really doesn’t want to go to magic school, but somehow can’t succeed at failing.

 I love Holly Blacks Tithe: A Modern Faerie Tale series and recommend you check out these wonderful young adult books also. Modern Faerie Tales: Tithe; Valiant; Ironside

 Waking Up: A Guide to Spirituality Without Religion by Sam Harris. 
For the millions of Americans who want spirituality without religion, Sam Harris’s new book is a guide to meditation as a rational spiritual practice informed by neuroscience and psychology. From multiple New York Times bestselling author, neuroscientist, and “new atheist” Sam Harris, Waking Up is for the 30 percent of Americans who follow no religion, but who suspect that Jesus, Buddha, Lao Tzu, Rumi, and the other saints and sages of history could not have all been epileptics, schizophrenics, or frauds.

Throughout the book, Harris argues that there are important truths to be found in the experiences of such contemplatives—and, therefore, that there is more to understanding reality than science and secular culture generally allow. Waking Up is part seeker’s memoir and part exploration of the scientific underpinnings of spirituality. No other book marries contemplative wisdom and modern science in this way, and no author other than Sam Harris—a scientist, philosopher, and famous skeptic—could write it.

 

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Review: Forbidden Kiss by Shannon Leigh

Fresh and Enchanting – A Timeless Story with a Happy Ending – Finally! 
Some stories are timeless. How many ways can the enduring love between Romeo and Juliet be told? Definitely one more time.
Author Shannon Leigh is a fresh and exciting new author. Forbidden Kiss, her retelling of the Shakespeare classic stands on its own merit. The tragedy of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet now has the happy ending the lovers deserve. 

Leigh introduces readers to a determined Jule Casale and a driven Rom Montgomery. Rom has lived centuries after his ‘death’ trying to overcome the curse that brought him back to life without his beloved Juliet. No longer a love struck boy, Rom is a man on a mission searching for forgiveness and salvation. 

Jule is on a mission as well. She seeks respect in her academic world of art. Her quest to uncover the artist of a unique masterpiece of Renaissance art brings her to Rom’s door.
The centuries and a different world have changed Rom and Jule. No longer star-struck young lovers but mature adults, initially they do not recognize the eternal love they share. 

They begin a journey seeking the series of paintings by the artist that brought Jule to Rom’s door. Let the mystery, adventure, betrayals, attraction and perhaps eternal story of love begin!

Forbidden Kiss will delight Romeo and Juliet lovers as it parallels and stays true to the original telling. “But come what sorrow can, it cannot countervail the exchange of joy that one short minute gives me in her sight.” If romance, paranormal, mystery and action books are your cup of tea – this book delivers.

I have had the privilege of reading upcoming releases of Shannon Leigh’s work. She just gets better. Look for more from Leigh through Entangled Publishing.  RecommendedFor more visit: Author Shannon Leigh 

I recommend Amazon Prime.  I really Do!

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I Am Back & I Missed You

Sometimes life throws a curve ball or you get knocked out by a SHOTPUT
I am on the road from “Shotput to the head” recovery (figuratively not literally) and here I am. I missed you and hope you return to our blogging relationship after my timeout.

And if you want to buy a house I have a well-loved, beautiful one for sale. Missing the bookcase already

 

I miss my bookcase already.  It is so empty but now I am searching for a new place and bookcase.

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Pre-Order Recommended Books Week of 2/24/14

As the second month of 2014 draws to an end – time flies doesn’t time fly? The first book I recommend is by one of my favorite scientists.  Yes, I will be in nerdvana!
Do you watch the Science / Discovery Channels? They will host Firefly marathons occasionally if you aren’t the science nerd I am. But even during the Firefly: The Complete Series  marathons you will learn something (as well as be entertained by a great TV show) from Michio Kaku as he offers commentary on the scientific possibility of the sci-fi premises of the series. 

Michio Kaku is a professor of physics at the City University of New York, cofounder of string field theory, and the author of several widely acclaimed science books, including Hyperspace: A Scientific Odyssey Through Parallel Universes, Time Warps, and the 10th Dimension, Beyond Einstein: The Cosmic Quest for the Theory of the Universe, Parallel Worlds: A Journey Through Creation, Higher Dimensions, and the Future of the Cosmos, Physics of the Impossible: A Scientific Exploration into the World of Phasers, Force Fields, Teleportation, and Time Travel, and Physics of the Future: How Science Will Shape Human. Destiny and Our Daily Lives by the Year 2100.

And if you are a science nerd like me or a scholar, you will find Kaku is an excellent teacher, making complex concepts understandable. Try Sci Fi Science: Seasons 1 & 2.

For the first time in history, the secrets of the living brain are being revealed by a battery of high tech brain scans devised by physicists. Now what was once solely the province of science fiction has become a startling reality. Recording memories, telepathy, videotaping our dreams, mind control, avatars, and telekinesis are not only possible; they already exist.
The Future of the Mind gives us an authoritative and compelling look at the astonishing research being done in top laboratories around the world—all based on the latest advancements in neuroscience and physics. One day we might have a “smart pill” that can enhance our cognition; be able to upload our brain to a computer, neuron for neuron; send thoughts and emotions around the world on a “brain-net”; control computers and robots with our mind; push the very limits of immortality; and perhaps even send our consciousness across the universe. 
Dr. Kaku takes us on a grand tour of what the future might hold, giving us not only a solid sense of how the brain functions but also how these technologies will change our daily lives. He even presents a radically new way to think about “consciousness” and applies it to provide fresh insight into mental illness, artificial intelligence and alien consciousness.

With Dr. Kaku’s deep understanding of modern science and keen eye for future developments, The Future of the Mind is a scientific tour de force–an extraordinary, mind-boggling exploration of the frontiers of neuroscience.

Timmy Failure: Now Look What You’ve Done by Stephen Pastis. Available February 24, 2014.

The clueless, comically self-confident kid detective returns in a sequel to the New York Times bestseller Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made.

“When you lose hope, find it.” —Timmy Failure.

He doesn’t like to pull rank. To reveal that he’s this guy: Timmy Failure, founder, president, and CEO of the greatest detective agency in town, perhaps the nation. But he is.And he’s about to crack the biggest case of his generation: a school competition to find a stolen globe. It’s his ticket to bringing home a $500 prize, which is guaranteed to set him up for life.

But someone is clearly trying to game the system. Hoodwink. Con. Defraud. So it’s up to Timmy Failure, with the dubious help of Total, his lazy polar-bear partner, and his unlikely new ally, eccentric Great-Aunt Colander, to find a way to avenge these shenanigans. Defeat this injustice.
If he can only get his entry form in on time.

Tremor (Pulse)  by Patrick Carman. Available February 25, 2014. I have mixed feelings about this series. As an adult I enjoy many young adult books however, this book didn’t quite do it for me. Never the less, I think it is a strongly appealing series for the targeted age group.

Tremor is the sequel to Pulse: Gr 9 Up-A mix of dystopian, adventure, romance, and superhero origin tale, this book covers all the bases admirably as long as readers are able to suspend their disbelief. Faith Daniels lives in between the strictly government controlled Western and Eastern States, in a zone whose population is dwindling daily through the promised advantages of immigration to the west or east. She also has the Pulse. Dylan has been watching over Faith to find the right time to explain about the supernatural power of the rare few who have it.

As events unfold, he is forced to reveal his secret and hers. Faith must adjust not only to her newfound powers but also come to terms with the loss of her parents and the unexpected murder of her best friend. All this must be done pronto, as the evil forces that wish to kill the duo and rule the world are gathering. Faith and Dylan find an ally in nerdy genius Hawk, who is able to hack into the tablets that control all communication and information. As Pulse comes to a close, the forces of good and evil face off for a showdown. Faith, Dylan, and Hawk await the chance to use their intellect and powers to save the world. Engrossing and suspense-filled, this book is sure to find an audience, and readers will eagerly await the sequel.

Tremor, the second book in bestselling author Patrick Carman’s Pulse trilogy, is filled with more action-packed scenes and romance. Tremor will excite fans of I Am Number Four (Lorien Legacies) and The Maze Runner Trilogy  with its richly developed characters and electrifying story of love and revenge.

In the year 2051, some people have a second pulse. Like all who have “the pulse,” Faith Daniels and Dylan Gilmore have telekinetic powers—they can move objects with their minds. But there are five second pulses in the world who have an even greater power: They are virtually indestructible. Both Faith and Dylan have the second pulse. As Dylan executes a plan to infiltrate enemy grounds, he’ll have to face his only weakness—and a family secret that will threaten his very existence.

The Artisan Soul: Crafting Your Life into a Work of Art by Erwin Raphael McManus. Available February 25, 2014.
In The Artisan Soul, Erwin Raphael McManus, author, thought leader, and founder of MOSAIC in Los Angeles, pens a manifesto for human creativity and the beginning of a new renaissance. McManus not only calls us to reclaim our creative essence but reveals how we can craft our lives into a work of art. There are no shortcuts to quality, and McManus celebrates the spiritual process that can help us discover our true selves.
McManus demonstrates that we all carry within us the essence of an artist. We all need to create, to be a part of a process that brings to the world something beautiful, good, and true, in order to allow our souls to come to life. It’s not only the quality of the ingredients we use to build our lives that matter, but the care we bring to the process itself. Just like baking artisan bread, it’s a process that’s crafted over time. And God has something to say about how we craft our lives. With poignant, inspirational stories and insights from art, life, history, and scripture interspersed throughout, McManus walks readers through the process of crafting a life of beauty and wonder.

 Zane and the Hurricane: A Story of Katrina  by Rodman Philbrick. Available February 25, 2014.
Newbery Honor author Rodman Philbrick presents a gripping yet poignant novel about a 12-year-old boy and his dog who become trapped in New Orleans during the horrors of Hurricane Katrina.
 Zane Dupree is a charismatic 12-year-old boy of mixed race visiting a relative in New Orleans when Hurricane Katrina hits. Unexpectedly separated from all family, Zane and his dog experience the terror of Katrina’s wind, rain, and horrific flooding. Facing death, they are rescued from an attic air vent by a kind, elderly musician and a scrappy young girl–both African American.
The chaos that ensues as storm water drowns the city, shelter and food vanish, and police contribute to a dangerous, frightening atmosphere, creates a page-turning tale that completely engrosses the reader. Based on the facts of the worst hurricane disaster in U.S. history, Philbrick includes the lawlessness and lack of government support during the disaster as well as the generosity and courage of those who risked their lives and safety to help others. Here is an unforgettable novel of heroism in the face of truly challenging circumstances.
 


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Pre-Order Recommended Books 2/17/14

February has had some great new books. If you haven’t checked out the post for 2/10/14 – stop by because they are good. This week is no different – wonderful new releases and a 50th Anniversary of one of my Favorite books, The Giving Tree.

The Museum of Extraordinary Things: A Novel  by Alice Hoffman. Available February 18, 2014. The E-book  edition on Kindle releases March 1, 2014.

Mesmerizing and illuminating, Alice Hoffman’s The Museum of Extraordinary Things is the story of an electric and impassioned love between two vastly different souls in New York during the volatile first decades of the twentieth century.

Coralie Sardie is the daughter of the sinister impresario behind The Museum of Extraordinary Things, a Coney Island boardwalk freak show that thrills the masses. An exceptional swimmer, Coralie appears as the Mermaid in her father’s “museum,” alongside performers like the Wolfman, the Butterfly Girl, and a one-hundred-year-old turtle. One night Coralie stumbles upon a striking young man taking pictures of moonlit trees in the woods off the Hudson River.

The dashing photographer is Eddie Cohen, a Russian immigrant who has run away from his father’s Lower East Side Orthodox community and his job as a tailor’s apprentice. When Eddie photographs the devastation on the streets of New York following the infamous Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, he becomes embroiled in the suspicious mystery behind a young woman’s disappearance and ignites the heart of Coralie.

With its colorful crowds of bootleggers, heiresses, thugs, and idealists, New York itself becomes a riveting character as Hoffman weaves her trademark magic, romance, and masterful storytelling to unite Coralie and Eddie in a sizzling, tender, and moving story of young love in tumultuous times.


 Biscuit Loves the Library (My First I Can Read)  by Alyssa Satin Capucilli and illustrator Pat Schories. Available February 18, 2014.
I
t’s Read to a Pet Day at the library! There are so many fun things to see and do! Biscuit plays with story-time puppets, visits with friends, and listens to recorded books. Before he goes, a librarian helps him find the activity that he loves most of all.
Biscuit Loves the Library , which means it’s perfect for shared reading with a child. The easy-to-read, joyful tale of Biscuit—everyone’s favorite little yellow puppy—will help cultivate a love of books and libraries in children who are learning to read.

The book is suggested for ages 4 to 8. But I think the series is excellent for reading to your toddler.  Try Biscuit Storybook Collection, What Is Love, Biscuit? and Meet Biscuit!.


 Who Wants a Cheap Rhinoceros?: 50th Anniversary Edition  by Shel Silverstein. Available February 18, 2014.

 A rhino makes the best kind of friend in this 50th Anniversary Edition of a cherished classic from Shel Silverstein.
Looking for a new pet? Bored with cats, dogs, goldfish, gerbils, and hamsters? How about a cheap rhinoceros?
Shel Silverstein’s loving look at the joys of rhino ownership may convince you to be the lucky person who takes home this very, very unusual pet.
This 50th Anniversary Edition features jacket art from the original 1964 edition, plus a commemorative anniversary sticker.
“Once there was a tree . . . and she loved a little boy.”
 
My Favorite book by Shel Silverstein The Giving Tree is also available February 18, 2014.
A Must Read! for all ages. I still have my copy in a special place in my library.
The Giving Tree with CD  by Shel Silverstein.
 “Once there was a tree . . . and she loved a little boy.” So begins a story of unforgettable perception, beautifully written and illustrated by the gifted and versatile Shel Silverstein. 

Every day the boy would come to the tree to eat her apples, swing from her branches, or slide down her trunk . . . and the tree was happy.
But as the boy grew older, he began to want more from the tree, and the tree gave and gave.
Since it was first published fifty years ago, Shel Silverstein’s moving parable for readers of all ages has offered an affecting interpretation of the gift of giving and a serene acceptance of another’s capacity to love in return.

Perfect Lies (Mind Games)  by Kiersten White. Available February 18, 2014. 
 This explosive sequel to Mind Games  which New York Times bestselling author Holly Black called “a brutal, exciting gem of a book,” is perfect for fans of Sara Shepard’s The Lying Game series. Perfect Lies is a lightning-fast, wickedly smart tale of two sisters trapped in a web of deceit.
For years, Annie and Fia have been in an endless battle for survival against the Keane Foundation. Now the sisters have found allies who can help them escape. But Annie’s visions of the future and Fia’s flawless instincts can’t always tell them who to trust. The sisters can only rely on each other—and even their extraordinary gifts may not be enough to save them.

 The Mad Sculptor: The Maniac, the Model, and the Murder that Shook the Nation by Harold Schechter. Available February 18, 2014 and the E-book version releases March 1, 2014.
 Beekman Place, once one of the most exclusive addresses in Manhattan, had a curious way of making it into the tabloids in the 1930s: “SKYSCRAPER SLAYER,” “BEAUTY SLAIN IN BATHTUB” read the headlines. On Easter Sunday in 1937, the discovery of a grisly triple homicide at Beekman Place would rock the neighborhood yet again—and enthrall the nation. The young man who committed the murders would come to be known in the annals of American crime as the Mad Sculptor.
Caught up in the Easter Sunday slayings was a bizarre and sensationalistic cast of characters, seemingly cooked up in a tabloid editor’s overheated imagination. The charismatic perpetrator, Roger Irwin, was a brilliant young sculptor who had studied with some of the masters of the era. But with his genius also came a deeply disturbed psyche; Irwin was obsessed with sexual self-mutilation and was frequently overcome by outbursts of violent rage.
Irwin’s primary victim, Veronica Gedeon, was a figure from the world of pulp fantasy—a stunning photographer’s model whose scandalous seminude pinups would titillate the public for weeks after her death. Irwin’s defense attorney, Samuel Leibowitz, was a courtroom celebrity with an unmatched record of acquittals and clients ranging from Al Capone to the Scottsboro Boys. And Dr. Fredric Wertham, psychiatrist and forensic scientist, befriended Irwin years before the murders and had predicted them in a public lecture months before the crime.
Based on extensive research and archival records, The Mad Sculptor recounts the chilling story of the Easter Sunday murders—a case that sparked a nationwide manhunt and endures as one of the most engrossing American crime dramas of the twentieth century. Harold Schechter’s masterful prose evokes the faded glory of post-depression New York and the singular madness of a brilliant mind turned against itself. It will keep you riveted until the very last page.

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