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Friday, April 16, 2010

Friday Finds: 04/16/10

Friday Finds is getting to be a once-a-month thing for me.  I'd like to do it more often but I never seem to have the time.  Ah well, here's my list anyway ...

It's been a while since I found something for Kiddo so let's start with that one:

The New Brighton Archeological Society, by Mark Andrew Smith and Matthew Weldon - found at The Book Smugglers - I've been trying to get Kiddo into graphic novels because I think it would help him to like reading more.  It's starting to work, so I'm on the lookout for new titles to introduce him to.  This one looks and sounds amazing! "Out of the ashes of misfortune will rise the next generation of great adventurers! After their parents are lost on an archeological expedition, four children begin to unlock the secrets of their parents’ mysterious lives, discovering a hidden world of mystical artifacts, mythical creatures, and arcane knowledge. Soon they find themselves drawn into a conflict over a great library that has kept two kingdoms at war for centuries, the children must save an enchanted forest, the birthplace of magic itself. Join us as these children become the latest members of the fabled New Brighton Archeological Society, and take their first steps towards their true destiny!" Be sure to check out the Smugglers' review - it has some up-close images of the illustrations and they are wonderful.

And now on to the books I found for me ...

The Lost City of Z, by David Grann - I thought this was already on my list but apparently not.  Swapna reminded me of it in her review: "This isn’t really an archaeological mystery; instead, it’s the tale of Percy Fawcett, and the puzzle of what happened to him after disappeared in the Amazon.  As the book progresses, the reader can tell that Grann is getting more and more sucked into the obsession with the Lost City of Z.  It’s funny that a lot of people’s interest in this subject starts with Fawcett, but ends up fixating on “Z.”  Grann falls prey to that, even as he is describing it happen to others in the book."

Clara's Kitchen, by Clara Cannucciari - found at She Is Too Fond of Books - This is the kind of cookbook I like, one that includes family stories and reasons for recipes. "Clara’s Kitchen is part memoir, part fortune-cookie aphorism, and part cookbook.  It is a comfort read in the sense that Clara Cannucciari reminds me of my own Gram, and both her stories and the food she serves bring pleasant memories of simpler times. The prose of her memoir may be transcibed recordings of an oral history – very familiar, conversational, and no-nonsense."

Abraham's Well, by Sharon Ewell Foster - found in an email from the author - "Until she is about seven years old, Armentia never knows she is a slave. She grows up in the southern Appalachians of North Carolina, watched over by loving parents, her older brother, Abraham, and Mama Emma and Papa, a married couple of white and Indian blood who treat her almost as a daughter. But an act of childhood mischief, and the arrival of whites who want the Indians’ land, makes their true relationship painfully clear. In 1838, Armentia’s family, along with thousands of other Black Cherokee – African Americans of mixed heritage, both slave and free – is forced westward on foot, accompanying their owners and other Indians along the Trail of Tears to what is now Oklahoma."

The Girl Who Fell From The Sky, Heidi Durrow - found at The Book Haven - This isn't the type of book I'm usually drawn to but here's what caught my attention: "The daughter of a Danish mother and an African-American G.I., a family tragedy puts her under the thumb of her strict African American grandmother.  She moves uncomfortably in a new world where blue eyes and light brown skin are attention grabbers. [...] The publisher says the story is inspired by 'true events.'"

The Lotus Eaters, by Tatjana Soli - found at At Home With Books - "What is rare about this story is that while it is set during the Vietnam War, and you do get to read about some horrific events, the story remains one of love and relationships (and the effects of the war on those relationships).  It is nice that the story is balanced and written with an eye toward the beauty of the Vietnamese culture and countryside, which just emphasizes how heartbreaking it is to witness their destruction from either side.  No one side is vilified or glorified - there are evil acts perpetrated by soldiers on both sides, as the line between right and wrong gets blurred in the war zone.  The true villain in this story is war itself, yet goodness shines through from those selfless enough to act."

Matterhorn, by Ken Marlantes - found at The Book Case - I wouldn't have been captured by the book had I not watched this video of the author.  Now I really, REALLY want to read this.

Those are the books I've added to my TBR list recently ... are any on yours as well?

For more Friday Finds please visit Should Be Reading.  And have a great weekend!


bermudaonion said...

Great finds! A friend of mine read The Girl Who Fell From the Sky - she said it's great, but sad.

Kate T said...

I watched the video on Matterhorn with trepidation, I usually go out of my way to avoid books about war, but after watching I immediately put this book in my Book Swim rental pool. Thanks for posting that video, I'm sure if it had just been a basic summary I would have kept on scrolling! The Girl Who Fell From the Sky is on my radar, but I especially am interested in reading more graphic novels, so thanks for those finds!

Juju at Tales of said...

I LOVE Clara's cookbook! :) I will be posting my review soon.

Amy said...

The Lost City of Z is on my list too.

MizB said...

How old is your kid? My son loves graphic novels, and you're right -- it gets them to read more when they have an interest. ;)

My boy just turned 12, and he's enjoyed the 'Bone' series by Jeff Smith, Captain Underpants by Dave Pilkey, and the "Amulet" series by Kazu Kibuishi. He's also always loved the Pokemon books, and anything based off of his favorite TV shows (Spiderman, Superman, Bakugan, Beyblade...)

Recently he enjoyed the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series, though those aren't graphic novels.

Best of luck! :D


MizB said...

PS...'s current Early Reviewers list has two graphic novels up for grabs -- "Alison Dare: Little Miss Adventures" and "Alison Dare: The Heart of the Maiden" both by J. Torres. These are for ages 8-12, apparently, and they're graphic novels. ;)


Alayne said...

These look awesome! The Lotus Eaters is getting good reviews. My Finds are at The Crowded Leaf.

Wanda said...

The Lotus Eaters made my wish list this week as well. Abraham's Well sounds like a book that would generate some discussion, I'll mark it as a possible together read for my daughter and I, thanks!

Mary said...

Like Kate T (commenter above), I usually avoid war fiction but after viewing the video it makes me want to hear the author's story. I've read about this book before so it was already on my radar but seeing him talk about it makes me want to read it. Thanks for posting it.

Heather J. said...

bermudaonion - That book is starting to make the rounds. I'll probably check out a few more reviews before I decide either way, but the story does sound really good.

Kate T - I know what you mean! I'm glad you checked out the video though. I've been convinced by more than one book trailer so I'm a huge fan of them.

Juju - Ooh, I'm so glad to know it was good!

Amy - I've heard great things about it!

MizB - Kiddo is 8 but he's a funny kid. He thinks Captain Underpants is stupid, and also Diary of a Wimpy Kid. He's not into superheros or Pokemon but he does love Star Wars ... and I've just about run out of Star Wars books for him to read. We've found lots of books for me to read TO him but less than he can do on his own. Thanks for the tips - I'll check out the books I hadn't heard of before.

Aalyne - It isn't something I'd normally pick up, but I've heard great things.

Wanda - That's a great idea! That book is sure to have lots of things to discuss.

Mary - I'm so glad the video convinced you to give it a shot!

atla said...

After watching the video about Matterhorn, I went over to amazon to read the first paragraph. Wow. I'm adding it to my TBR.

Barbara said...

Hey Heather,

great finds. The Lotus Eaters and Matterhorn are on my list, as well.

Here's mine -- short and sweet.

GMR said...

It may be considered for kiddo but The New Brighton... book looks good! Great choices! Thanks for sharing!

Audrey said...

The Girl Who Fell From the Sky sounds like an engaging read, especially since it is inspired by true events. I really enjoyed Josh Karp's personal golf memoir about how he used the game and his spirituality to bring peace into his life. It's quite humorous as well. You should check it out!

Kailana said...

I think I might have to buy The Lost City of Z. I keep getting it from the library and not fitting it in to my reading schedule! I tend to read non-fiction slower than fiction, so maybe I should just accept that the library, me, and non-fiction are not a good mix. lol

Jules said...

Abraham's Well sounds like a good and powerful read. This is the first I've heard of it.

Lotus Eaters keeps catching my eye, so I might just need to grab myself a copy.

Thanks for sharing your finds!

Alyce said...

I really enjoyed the Lost City of Z when I read it, and of course I loved The Lotus Eaters. :) Nice finds!

Lisa said...

I've got The Lost City of Z and The Girl Who Fell From The Sky on my wishlist as well. I loved The Lotus Eaters. I read it a few weeks ago and I just keep finding myself thinking about it.

Heather J. said...

atla - I'm glad the video got your attention - it certainly got mine!

Barbara - Off to check your out now ...

GMR - I'm not really a graphic novel fan but I have to admit that NEW BRIGHTON really does look appealing.

Audrey - Thanks.

Kailana - Yeah, that might be the solution for you. I'd go crazy if I had to return a book before I finished reading it - it's happened before, but not often.

Jules - I'd never heard of it before either but it sounds fascinating, and it's about a time/place/people that I'm not very familiar with.

Alyce - Yeah, you know that most of my Friday Finds can be blamed on you ... :)

Lisa - Glad to have a second good opinion on LOTUS!

Lydia said...

The Girl Who Fell from the Sky sounds really good. Not to mention, the cover is quite pretty in its simplicity.

-Lydia @ The Literary Lollipop

ps. Good Luck on the Lost Reading Challenge.

Heather J. said...

Lydia - Thanks! Are you a LOST fan?

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