WWW Wednesdays – January 2, 2013

WWW Wednesdays

My bookshelf

The Mistress of Spices by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni – What I’m currently reading  ,
The Mistress of Spices by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni. I saw the preview for the movie while watching a DVD a few months ago and decided to read the book instead. It’s interesting so far but I have no idea where it’s eventually going, although I’m reaching the end. I’ll review it in more detail next week when I’m done with it.

– What I recently finished reading
I finished The Giver series and I loved it! Read my review of The Giver here, the first in the Quartet.
Gathering Blue by Lois Lowry. I really liked reading about Kira’s chilling, yet fascinating, world. She fights against adversity and is determined to find out the truth about her cruel world and change what can be changed. I love reading about strong female characters and this book didn’t disappoint. If you wondered what happened to Jonas at the end of The Giver, this book gives you a small clue.
Messenger by Lois Lowry. I love how the stories in this series intertwine without overlapping and how each main character has a definite role in their own world. For those who felt the end of the The Giver was incomplete, this book gives you a good idea of what happened to Jonas, even more than in Gathering Blue.
Son by Lois LowrySon by Lois Lowry, which was just published a few months ago, in October 2012. What a powerful ending to The Giver series! Reading the four books in a row was the best decision I could make to understand the powerful message of these stories. The Giver, Gathering Blue and Messenger are all connected in one way or another, and Son brings all of the characters together to tie things up neatly. I love how Lois Lowry tells the story, yet leaves room for your own imagination in every chapter. She’s a wonderful storyteller with a realistic grasp of humanity, with all its faults and strengths. I’m so glad I read this series and I can’t wait for my kids to be old enough to do the same (age 10 and up is probably best). I couldn’t have asked for better reading materials to end 2012.

– What I think I’ll read next 
My friend Mia recommended I read Cutting For Stone by Abraham Verghese. I requested it from the library a couple of months ago but I had to return it before I had a chance to start it. I just got it again so I need to hurry this time. If you’ve read Cutting For Stone already, I’d love to hear what you thought, but no spoilers please.

My kids’ bookshelf

Olivia and the fairy princesses by Ian FalconerWhat they’re currently reading
Olivia and the Fairy Princesses by Ian Falconer. Even though they’re boys, my kids love reading Olivia’s adventures. After all, she’s not your typical girl pig. She’s quite unique and that’s the theme Olivia and the Fairy Princesses explores. Olivia doesn’t want to be a princess like all the other girl pigs, but she’s not sure what she wants to be. The ending is typical Olivia and we enjoy reading this book over and over. It was interesting to hear my kids express their concerns about looking different from the other kids. I guess peer pressure is already very strong, even at their young age. Scary.
King Arthur’s Very Great Grandson by Kenneth Kraegel. Kristen at Motherese said in a recent post that her youngest boy really liked it so I requested it from the library. Henry Alfred Grummorson is the great-great-great-great-great-greatgreat grandson of King Arthur and decides to search for adventure when he turns six. Unfortunately, none of the creatures he encounters seem to want to fight a grand battle. Poor Henry!

Walter the farting dog by William Kotzwinkle– What they recently finished reading
We’ve read four books of the same series recently. What I like about them is, they’re very funny and show you that a bad thing (a dog with very bad gas) can turn into a good thing, depending on the circumstances. What I don’t like about these books is the artwork. It’s a major eyesore. Even my kids complain how ugly the computer illustrations and colors are. How a publisher would even allow such ugly artwork to go to press is beyond me. I bet the writers are still scratching their heads about this one too. My advice to you: borrow the books from your library, don’t buy them.
Walter the Farting Dog by William Kotzwinkle. (CORRECTED) If you’ve ever read Dav Pilkey’s Dog Breath, The Horrible Trouble with Hally Tosis, you’ll wonder how Kotzwinkle didn’t get accused of plagiarism because these two books tell exactly the SAME story (just replace the bad breath with the smelly farts). Pilkey’s version is by far the best: Hally Tosis is cuter and the story is very witty. By the way, if you want to read a fascinating children’s book about farts, go with Fartiste, the real story of French performer Joseph Pujol, who grew up to become “Le Petomane” (read my personal review of Fartiste here).
Walter the Farting Dog: Banned from the Beach
Rough Weather Ahead for Walter the Farting Dog
Walter the Farting Dog: Trouble At the Yard Sale

– What I think they’ll read next
I don’t know but I’m sure it will be good stuff. What about you? Any books you or your kids are reading you’d like to share?

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15 responses to “WWW Wednesdays – January 2, 2013

  1. I’d love to hear your thoughts on “Cutting for Stone.” I’ve been thinking of reading that one. I’m currently reading “Cell” by Stephen King. It’s good, and his storytelling and characterization is as good as always, but it’s not one of my favorites, probably because I’m not a huge fan of apocalyptic type novels.

    • You’ll know as soon as I’ve done with it. Hopefully, I can start it before this weekend. You’re reminding me I want to read more King books this year. I have several still unread on my bookshelf and many more are waiting for me at the library. :-)

      • I want to go back and reread The Shining. It’s the only book I remember really scaring me. I was young at the time, so I want to reread it and see if I still feel the same. Plus, he’s writing a ‘sequel’ to it. It involves the son as an adult who encounters some of his own ‘issues.’

      • Oh, I don’t think I read that one. The Four Past Midnight short stories were terrifying. My favorite are still The Green Mile and the short story that inspired The Shawshank Redemption. They show you King’s brilliant talent as a storyteller.

  2. I really liked Cutting for Stone. Other friends of mine haven’t liked it so much, but I found the setting fascinating and the two twin boys lives very riveting. I loved all the medical surgery info in the story.

    • My friend had similar comments about the book and that’s why I got intrigued and wanted to read it. Hopefully you’ll know soon what I think of it. I looks like a long book though. I hope it reads fast.

  3. Hi Milka,
    Your honest opinions are refreshing. Your comments about the “farting” dog book made me laugh.
    Tracy :-)

  4. I agree with you on the Walter books. They are really kind of scary for little ones. The most fun we have with them is looking for the spider on every page. We also have the little stuffed Walter and it is kind of funny to squeeze it and make him fart. Yes, even for adults, fart jokes don’t get old.

    • Oh, I didn’t know we had to look for a spider but since I hate spiders, I won’t entice my kids to search for them! I also didn’t know there was a stuffed Walter out there. Poor doggy, I hope he only comes with the noises but not the odors…

  5. It is William Kotzwinkle who should have been accused of plagiarism. Dav Pilkey’s Dog Breath!: The Horrible Trouble with Hally Tosis was published in 1994 and won the 1998 California Young Reader Medal. It should also be noted that Pilkey did all of his own illustrations in addition to the writing. It took three people to write, illustrate and design Walter the Farting Dog.

    • THANK YOU so much for correcting me on the publication dates! I’ll fix my post after I finish this comment. I could have sworn Dog Breath was published first but Amazon only showed a 2004 date, which must have been a new edition. It actually took 4 people for Walter the Farting Dog since the illustrator was on top of 3 writers. And no, I can’t understand why it took 3 people to write a story that was written exactly the same previously. We’re big Dav Pilkey fans at our house (I thanked him for giving my son the love of independent reading in a previous post: https://perfectingmotherhood.wordpress.com/2012/12/31/my-favorite-books-of-2012/) and I think we’ve read most of his books. My oldest son loves to write and illustrate his own stories and so Pilkey is a great role model for him. Thanks again for stopping by and setting the record straight, I really appreciate it!

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