Graphic Novels for elementary school readers

Two series of humorous graphic novels that I find to be popular with 2nd to 5th graders are the “Lunch Lady” series by Jarrett Krosoczka and the  “Dragonbreath” series by Ursula Vernon. The series by Krosoczka follows a school lunch lady who secretly fights crime, for those young patrons who like mysteries. The “Dragonbreath” series is for a slightly younger reader who would enjoy the comical adventures of a heroic dragon and his faint-hearted friend; this series is also good for reluctant readers.

Margaret Mahy

The field of children’s books has suffered several important losses recently.  As Pam noted, Donald Sobol died last week.  Within the last several months, Maurice Sendak, Phyllis Craighead George, and more recently Margaret Mahy have all passed away.

A New Zealander, Mahy wrote and illustrated more than 150 children’s books.  Trained as a librarian, she was unsuccessful in getting her books published.  In1969, an American publisher read one of her stories and within a year, they published 6 of her books.

Known for her quirky rhymes, she had the ability to “leaven unbelievable situations with believable characters.”  Some of her books are “A Lion in the Meadow,” “Beaten by a Balloon,” and
“Bubble Trouble.”

Crocheting/Knitting Circle

I asked Maria tonight about a crocheting/knitting circle- a time where anyone interested can show up and bring their respective projects to work on together.  It would be open to all ages.  What do the rest of the staff think of this idea?  Should we offer lessons or do you think that we should just keep it simple and have it BYOP (Bring Your Own Project)?  Should it be on a weeknight or on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon?  Any thoughts on the subject would be welcome!

Game of Thrones

I’m reading The Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin.  I really enjoyed watching the first season (EXCELLENT!), but I’m having trouble powering through the book.  I’m not sure if it’s because I already know the main plot points of what will happen to the characters, or if the writing is a bit ponderous in detail.  The book is interesting and gives more detail then you get from the show, however, it’s definitely not a light read.  Has anyone else read it?  What did you think of it?

The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin

This book belongs in the non-fiction category of stunt journalism. The genre may have been kickstarted by Supersize Me. Julie and Julia is another example. Many started out as blogs as did this book and Julie and Julia. Basically, someone does something out of the ordinary for a period of time and documents their experience.

How can you not like a book that tries to bring more happiness to the world. I did like this book and would recommend it to people who liked Eat, Pray, Love. The author spends a year working on a different aspect of her life for a month in order to become a happier person. Gretchen is a voracious reader, a serious researcher and a former lawyer. These aspects of her personality elevate the book above your average blog.

Her number one principle was “To be Gretchen.” Things and activities that make other people happy don’t necessarily make her happy and vice versa. Gretchen gets more sleep, resists nagging her husband, “lightens up”, cleans up the clutter, expresses more gratitude and tries overall to be a more pleasant person to others because one of the best ways to make yourself happy is to make others happy and one of the best ways to make others happy is to be happy yourself.