The Truth About Melody Browne

Lisa Jewell is one of my favorite writers, and this title was a very enjoyable read. Melody Browne has no memories of her life before 9 years old. After her parents’ house burned down, the trauma of the event helped to suppress those recollections. Now she is 33, with a son who is turning 18. After a brief encounter with a hypnotist, she passes out, and, following that, slowly begins to experience scattered memories and snapshots of the past. Little by little, Melody begins to follow the paths that her memories lead her on, embarking on a journey of self discovery, as she realizes what she experienced in her early childhood years. Ms. Jewell has a deft way of weaving relationships together, as she builds her characterizations and the plot. I definitely recommend this title!

Anime NYC next weekend @ Jacob Javits

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November 19 – November 21 2021 Anime NYC is New York City’s anime convention! A showcase of the best of Japanese pop culture in the biggest city in America, Anime NYC brings anime fans and publishers together for three days of unique exhibits, exclusive screenings, extensive panels, and appearances by some of the biggest creators in Japan. Join us for a celebration of Japanese animation, manga, and cosplay in the heart of NYC!

‘Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving

This is one of my favorite Thanksgiving holiday books to read aloud. Dav Pilkey borrows from Clement Moore’s poem ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, to tell a hilarious story about a busload of children who are determined to save the turkeys on a nearby farm. They hide the turkeys under their coats and stagger back to the bus, with none the wiser. The illustrations are lively and upbeat: all in all it’s a great readaloud.

Notable Children’s books 2021

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If you’re looking for recommendations for a younger person, take a look at the American Library Association’s 2021 list of notable books. These titles have been considered by their committee of professionals:

“Each year a committee of the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) identifies the best of the best in children’s books. According to the Notables Criteria, “notable” is defined as: Worthy of note or notice, important, distinguished, outstanding. As applied to children’s books, notable should be thought to include books of especially commendable quality, books that exhibit venturesome creativity, and books of fiction, information, poetry and pictures for all age levels (birth through age 14) that reflect and encourage children’s interests in exemplary ways.”

The list contains titles for preschoolers up to age 14 as well as an ‘All Ages’ category.

Women Of Troy

If you plan on reading this, it would be best to read Pat Barker’s previous novel, The Silence of the Girls, as it sets the stage for Women of Troy. Both novels are based on the epic of The Iliad, as seen from the captured Trojan women’s point of view. Women of Troy is heavy on characterization, and you need to know your Greeks and Trojans in order to keep everyone straight. Women begins with the arrival of the Trojan horse, and concentrates on Briseis, a former queen of a neighboring kingdom of Troy that was sacked by Achilles. Now his son Pyrrhus is the feared Greek warrior, who kills Priam, King of Troy, setting off a whole ethical debate. I had a hard time finishing this novel; it was a bit too heavy on characterization and focus on the terrible treatment of Trojan women by the Greeks during the war for my taste.