Monday, December 21, 2009

Weekly Round-Up 12/21

Weekly Round-Up is my wrap-up of last week's activities and includes what I'm reading this week and anything of interest plus From the Library, my weekly listing of what I've checked out from the library.
It's Christmas week!  All my reviews are going to be from holiday books so look for that this week.

This week I'm reading The Midnight Twins (Mitchard), Envy and Splendor (Godbersen).  I'm listening to Twelve Sharp (Evanovich).

Since last week I've read Eyes Like Stars (Mantchev), Gidget (Kohner) and I've listened to The Wednesday Wars (Schmidt), The Great Brain (Fitzgerald), and Betsy-Tacy (Lovelace).

From the Library is my weekly listing of what I checked out from the library this week.  I'm getting ready for some challenges and I'm in need of audio so most of what I got is audio.

The Great Brain (audio) - John Dennis Fitzgerald, read by Ron McLarty

(I read this a long time ago when I was in maybe 4th or 5th grade and I don't remember much except the indoor toilet scheme, but I'm going to read it for the Shelf Discovery Challenge and the Rainbow Connection Challenge)  The best con man in the Midwest is only ten years old. Tom, a.k.a., the Great Brain, is a silver-tongued genius with a knack for turning a profit. When the Jenkins boys get lost in Skeleton Cave, the Great Brain saves the day. Whether it’s saving the kids at school, or helping out Peg-leg Andy, or Basil, the new kid at school, the Great Brain always manages to come out on top—and line his pockets in the process.

The Westing Game (audio, Playaway) - Ellen Raskins, read by Jeff Woodman

(also for the Shelf Discovery Challenge) This highly inventive mystery involves sixteen people who are invited to the reading of Samuel W. Westing's will. They could become millionaires-it all depends on how they play the tricky and dangerous Westing game, a game involving blizzards, burglaries, and bombings! Ellen Raskin has created a remarkable cast of characters in a puzzle-knotted, word-twisting plot filled with humor, intrigue, and suspense.

Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West (audio) - Gregory Maguire, read by John Mcdonough

(for the Take a Another Chance Challenge) When Dorothy triumphed over the Wicked Witch of the West in L. Frank Baum's classic tale, we heard only her side of the story. But what about her arch–nemesis, the mysterious witch? Where did she come from? How did she become so wicked? And what is the true nature of evil?
Gregory Maguire creates a fantasy world so rich and vivid that we will never look at Oz the same way again. Wicked is about a land where animals talk and strive to be treated like first–class citizens, Munchkinlanders seek the comfort of middle–class stability and the Tin Man becomes a victim of domestic violence. And then there is the little green–skinned girl named Elphaba, who will grow up to be the infamous Wicked Witch of the West, a smart, prickly and misunderstood creature who challenges all our preconceived notions about the nature of good and evil. 

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz - Frank L.Baum

(for the Take a Another Chance Challenge, I honestly don't know if I've read this before) As Dorothy journeys down the yellow brick road to the Emerald City, hoping the Great and Terrible Wizard who lives there will help her return home, she shares adventures with the famous trio of characters, defeats a wicked witch, and learns about the power of friendship, loyalty, and self-confidence. While scholars have debated for decades over possible political meanings hidden within the tale, Baum himself claimed he simply wanted to write a “modernized fairy tale, in which the wonderment and joy are retained and the heartaches and nightmares are left out.” As it has done for generations past, this classic of fantasy adventure speaks movingly about what every child needs: the Woodman’s compassion, the Lion’s courage, and the Scarecrow’s wisdom.

Fat Cat - Robin Brande

(recommended by edge of seventeen, I like Robin Brande though)

Cat smart, sassy, and funny—but thin, she’s not. Until her class science project. That’s when she winds up doing an experiment—on herself. Before she knows it, Cat is living—and eating—like the hominids, our earliest human ancestors. True, no chips or TV is a bummer and no car is a pain, but healthful eating and walking everywhere do have their benefits.

As the pounds drop off, the guys pile on. All this newfound male attention is enough to drive a girl crazy! If only she weren’t too busy hating Matt McKinney to notice. . . .

Splendor - Anna Godbersen

(I'm finally going to finish this series.) A spring turns into summer, Elizabeth relishes her new role as a young wife, while her sister, Diana, searches for adventure abroad. But when a surprising clue about their father's death comes to light, the Holland girls wonder at what cost a life of splendor comes.
Carolina Broad, society's newest darling, fans a flame from her past, oblivious to how it might burn her future. Penelope Schoonmaker is finally Manhattan royalty—but when a real prince visits the city, she covets a title that comes with a crown. Her husband, Henry, bravely went to war, only to discover that his father's rule extends well beyond New York's shores and that fighting for love may prove a losing battle.
In the dramatic conclusion to the bestselling Luxe series, New York's most dazzling socialites chase dreams, cling to promises, and tempt fate. As society watches what will become of the city's oldest families and newest fortunes, one question remains: Will its stars fade away or will they shine ever brighter?


  1. I really want to read The Midnight Twins. I requested it on Bookmooch over a month ago and it still hasn't come. Grr.

  2. I'm going to have to read The Westing Game again. Hope you love Wicked. It's not always easy, but it's worth it :)

  3. Great week! I need to read Eyes Like Stars. I've heards some good things about it.


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