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Friday Faves

goodreads logoI got an email from Goodreads informing me that I’d started reading The Complete Short Stories of Truman Capote 127 days ago and suggesting that I might want to update my progress.

Oh yeah, Truman Capote’s stories. Never finished them. Didn’t grab me.

But I did finish some other books in the last 127 days. So I scrounged my memory for a handful of favourites to praise on Goodreads this morning. (I have a new writing schedule that devotes Friday mornings to stuff like that – and this. As it is 1:17, I’m technically already off schedule. No surprise there.)

Here are a few of the books that grabbed me recently. (You can read more via the Goodreads sidebar. In fact, I’m probably just repeating myself by posting the reviews here. But whatever, time’s up.)

battle bunnyBattle Bunny by Jon Scieszka and Mac Barnett, illustrated by Matthew Myers.

The best children’s book I’ve read for a while – and that’s saying something because I read a lot of great children’s books. A clever boy with a pencil transforms Birthday Bunny into Battle Bunny in this hilarious picture book. Read it if you are a bright kid or used to be one. It captures the energy and creativity of a young mind just perfectly. I loved it. Five stars. Outstanding.

heroesThe Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healey

This is a fun book for 8-12-year-olds about the various Princes Charmings from folklore who, with the princesses of lore, work together to save their kingdom from a wicked witch. I read it to my son when he was 11 and we both loved it. (It’s long for a read-aloud but lots of fun.) Engaging characters, witty, action-packed and funny.

For the adults out there looking for something un-put-down-able that will scare the pants off them:

ritualThe Ritual by Adam Nevill

Riveting. Loved it. Especially the beginning. Want to read it again to figure out how he did it. Don’t know why I’ve reverted to sentence fragments… The book’s premise is the stuff of urban legend – four guys lost in the woods stumble onto something creepy hanging from a tree and start to think maybe they’re not alone – but he makes it fresh and gripping. You will reconsider that remote camping trip you planned for August after reading this, let me tell you. It was so much fun to read a good scare! I find most horror books gross or dumb or poorly written – but this one was none of those things.

For adults who prefer to read something more realistic (with their pants snugly in place)…

corvusCorvus by Esther Woolfson

This memoir of home life with wild birds (injured and rehabilitated animals including a couple of clever crows) is beautifully written. Every scene is vivid – the birds come to life in all their splendid plumage and personalities. There is a deep love and humility here that touches the heart and makes me wish I shared my days more intimately with other natures.

And for the teen crowd…

unlikely heroI’m reading last year’s Governor General’s Award winner, The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B by the witty and wonderful Teresa Toten, and I am loving it.

I’ll try to get my review up on Goodreads before another 127 passes by.

And that’s all for this Friday. Have a great weekend.





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