Voices: The Final Hours of Joan of Arc

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In honor of National Poetry month I thought I’d to my usual reviews of novels-in-verse. This one, Voices : The Final Hours of Joan of Arc by David Elliott (author of Bull), fulfills all one would want in a book (if they want poetry, wit, humor, and history).

Told through medieval poetic forms and in the voices of the people and objects in Joan of Arc’s life, (including her family and even the trees, clothes, cows, and candles of her childhood). Along the way it explores issues such as gender, misogyny, and the peril of speaking truth to power. Before Joan of Arc became a saint, she was a girl inspired (or was she mad?). This book explores the possibilities in the most clever of ways.

Muscoot Farm for kids

After you’ve read all the farm books to the kids, why not get everyone into the car and head for the real thing? Muscoot Farm in Katonah will bring ‘Old MacDonald’ to life with plenty of chickens, cows, pigs, horses, turkeys, sheep, and goats. Great for picnics (the concession stand is kid-friendly, too), Muscoot provides family fun for all ages.  Special events include magic shows, storycraft hour, Birds of Prey programs, Fairy House projects, and a farmer’s market.   Don’t forget to read Margaret Wise Brown’s “Big Red Barn” before you head out! [Click the book cover below to listen to it being read to you with pictures!]

Title: Big Red Barn, Author: Margaret Wise Brown

The Kinship of Secrets

kinshipCalvin and Najin Cho decide to emigrate to the United States from South Korea in 1948. They take their older daughter with them and leave their infant girl behind with Najin’s parents and brother, planning to return once settled in America. But war breaks out in Korea, and Najin’s family must leave their home to find safety from the fighting. The Chos cannot save enough to return to Korea, but never forget their daughter, Inja. Eugenia Kim skillfully contrasts the struggle of the Chos in America with the hardships of 1950s Korea. I found this to be a very heartwarming novel, with a fascinating window into Korean culture.