3.13 Noriko Matsubara, Bocchi + Pocchi and the Bird, 2014
It's a kid's story about two socks going for a walk. What my children liked the most was the photos of the author knitting models of the socks at the end. She wrote it! She illustrated it! She made the socks!
Olive Senior, Anna Carries Water, illustrated by Laura James, 2013
Olive Senior is a Jamaican writer living in Canada. The picture book is every bit as good as you would think, given that she has won the Commonwealth Writers Prize, a Gold Medal of the Institute of Jamaica and the Isabel Sissons Canadian Children's Story Award.
It's a story about the littlest girl in a family who wants to be able to carry water on her head, like her big sisters and brothers. My youngest child was particularly taken with this.
The colourful illustrations are by Laura James, who has Antiguan heritage.
I enjoyed this book a lot, I'm glad someone recommended it to me!
I loved the flow of it, how easily it sucked me in and kept me reading, and the distinct voice of Ari which always felt true. It was fun to follow along on Dante's and Ari's relationship and to watch its progression. The author took great care with carefully rendering his characters and how they related to each other. Dante and Ari are obviously at the core of the book, but I also thought the parents-child relationships were varied and complex, and even charaters without much page time like aunt Ophelia felt rich.
The ending felt a bit rushed, but nonetheless this is a great book.
Let me preface this by saying that I did not enjoy The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, a book for which Jemisin won many awards. But I thought this book was terrific. Jemisin's work has become better known recently and I was happy to include her in my project. I am now EXTREMELY EAGER for the sequel to this book.
A charming story about a hen in a laying battery who dreams of escaping to freedom and hatching one of her eggs. Clear and simple prose with a likeable heroine.
Though I am close to the end of my project I couldn't help sneaking in one more memoir. I really have enjoyed the nonfiction I have read in this year - so much more than I would normally read and the quality was excellent.
If you have ever felt that you are holding yourself back... that you don't have the life you really want to have... that you would rather not try than embarrass yourself by failing... then you need to get this book as quickly as possible.
Because Rhimes is writing about herself the tone is never preachy. It's short and it's funny but also so inspirational. I loved that it included speeches she gave and pictures of her and her family.
I highly recommend this book for everyone.
This is an anthology of short pieces by the well-known speculative fiction writer Due. They don't quite fall into the horror category - I would rather describe them as atmospheric dark fantasy. The linked pieces center around Gracetown, Florida, a small town with a troubled past...
Though I'm not a horror fan I enjoyed this anthology immensely. The writing was terrific. It made a nice introduction to Due and her work. Highly recommended.
This wasn't my thing. The aggressive cheerfulness put me off. The claim that doing only a little bit at a time doesn't work doesn't fit with my life experience at all. And striving for perfection all the time seems tiring- I'm more in the "The Perfect is the enemy of the good" camp.