For years people have been predicting what would be the next Harry Potter. With the final movie from the franchise in theaters now, here's a look at some of the series that have been called its successor--and whether they have lived up to the hype (courtesy of Atlantic magazine).
Gwyneth Anne Jones, a teacher-librarian in Laurel, Md., who writes the Daring Librarian Blog, says that librarians need to be more like Lady Gaga than Lady Bird Johnson. We need to establish a clear, pervasive, vibrant, and involved presence in our community, and on the web. The more visible librarians are the less likely that they’ll be taken away. Good point.
As you can see from the photos, I had a great time in New Orleans at the ALA Meeting. It was wonderful to get a chance to meet some folks face to face whose books I've enjoyed reading for years and to get to know some new authors. New Orleans was an attraction itself, the Scholarship Bash held at the World War II Museum was a rousing good time, and the Newbery, Caldecot, Wilder Award Banquet was a glittering affair.
Me with Daniel Handler, aka, Lemony Snicket
He's signing a copy of his new Young Adult book for me "Why We Broke Up"
Me with Kate DiCamillo, Alison McGhee, and Tony Fucile
Kate's book that she signed for me is "Bink & Gollie"
Me and Harlan Coben
He's signing his new YA book "Shelter"
Jeff Kinney, "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" author, gave a nice presentation
Cassandra Clare, author of the hot YA trilogy "Mortal Instruments"
Mary Kay Andrews, author of Little Bitty Lies, Hissy Fit, and Savannah Blues
Authors Brandon Sanderson and Nnedi Okorafor
Brandon signed copies of his book "The Way of Kings" (he is also completing Robert Jordan's "Wheel of Time" series); Nnedi signed copies of her books "Akata Witch" and "Who Fears Death".
Steve Hamilton, author of Edgar Award Winner for Best Novel of the Year for his YA book "The Lock Artist"
Alden Bell, author of "The Reapers are the Angels"
I love Jeri Westerson's Crispin Guest novels. She really makes me feel like I am right in the middle of the medieval atmosphere she has created, London in 1384, experiencing the sights and sounds along with her hero, the Tracker, Crispin Guest.
The thing I love about Crispin is that he operates within this historical framework while maintaining personal integrity, his own moral compass, and a sense of humor that never seems to desert him no matter the circumstances. And the circumstances have not been the best for Crispin since he was banished from court, stripped of his title and his land, losing his money and position in the process, and forced to survive by his wits and skill as the "Tracker".
In this second book in the series, a simpleminded tavern girl shows up at his door in the Shambles asking for his help. A body was found in her room with an arrow protruding from the man and she must have killed him. The man was a courier from the French king transporting a relic to England. Crispin is drawn into the events and they quickly spiral out of control to the point where Crispin is implicated in the murder. With time running out he has to unravel the conspiracy behind the murder and save his country and himself in the process. How he manages to do this is a reader's delight in the hands of the skillful Westerson. This book is pure fun and one of my favorite reads of the past few months. I highly recommend it. I can't wait to tackle "The Demon's Parchment" [Book 3], and the 4th installment, "Troubled Bones", which is due out in October.
Good books. Good times. Good stories. Good rhymes. Good beginnings. Good ends. Good people. Good friends. Good fiction. Good facts. Good adventures. Good acts. Good stories. Good rhymes. Good books. Good times.
Yeah, Reading is Sexy
A Whale for the Killing by Farley Mowat
All Over But the Shoutin' by Rick Bragg
American Gods by Neil Gaiman
At Play in the Fields of the Lord by Peter Matthiessen
Beach Music by Pat Conroy
Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser
How Now Shall We Live by Charles Colson
In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan
Life of Pi by Yann Martel
Parchment of Leaves by Silas House
River of Earth by James Still
Standing in the Rainbow by Fannie Flagg
The Cloister Walk by Kathleen Norris
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
The Know-It-All: One Man's Humble Quest to Become the Smartest Person in the World by A. J. Jacobs
The Mitford series by Jan Karon
The Stand by Stephen King
This quote from Eudora Welty captures perfectly how I feel about books and reading
"I cannot remember a time when I was not in love with them -- with the books themselves, cover and binding and the paper they were printed on, with their smell and their weight and with their possession in my arms, captured and carried off to myself."
Get Caught Reading
Want to find time to read? Fall in book love. Seek out the books that fire your passions. Follow your intellect and your heart. Then time will find you. ...Steve Leveen
Stop thinking this is all there is...
Realize that for every ongoing war and religious outrage and environmental devastation, there are a thousand counter-balancing acts of staggering generosity and humanity and art and beauty happening all over the world, right now, on a breathtaking scale, from flower box to cathedral.
Resist the temptation to drown in fatalism, to shake your head and sigh and just throw in the karmic towel.
Realize that this is the perfect moment to change the energy of the world, to step right up and crank your personal volume; right when it all seems dark and bitter and offensive and acrimonious and conflicted and bilious...there's your opening!
And, finally, believe you are part of a groundswell, a resistance, a seemingly small but actually very, very large impending karmic overhaul, a great shift, the beginning of something important and potent and unstoppable.
...Mark Morford, Newspaper Columnist and Yoga Instructor
CONAN THE LIBRARIAN
I read as if time were running out, because technically it is. As I grow older, I find I'm increasingly impatient with mediocre entertainments: I want books that will take my breath away and realign my vision...Barbara Kingsolver
Books are the carriers of civilization. Without books, history is silent, literature dumb, science crippled, thought and speculation at a standstill...Barbara Techman (Writer)
Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul...Samuel Ullman
Old minds are like old horses; you must exercise them if you wish to keep them in working order...John Adams, 2nd President of the U.S.
Every page allows me to live in the main character's thoughts and marvel at how all of us who grew up poor and female are bonded, regardless of where we were raised or who raised us. I not only feel I know this person, but I also recognize more of myself. That's just one of the great joys of reading. Insight, escape, information, knowledge, power. All that and more can come through a good book...If you're going to binge, literature is definitely the way to do it...Oprah Winfrey
"I'm of a fearsome mind to throw my arms around every living librarian who crosses my path, on behalf of the souls they never knew they saved."
Asking a Librarian her favorite book is like asking a Mother her favorite child
So you want to become a librarian? Welcome to a vibrant and exciting profession. Click here.
The best of all things is to learn. Money can be lost or stolen. Health and strength may fail. But what you have committed to your mind, is yours forever...Louis Lamour
You don't have to burn books to destroy a culture.Just get people to stop reading them. ..... Ray Bradbury
I LOVE NEIL GAIMAN
Do yourself a favor and read American Gods, Anansi Boys, Fragile Things, Smoke & Mirrors, The Graveyard Book, MirrorMask, or Good Omens
Love the Fantasy/SciFi genre
Many good authors to try, John Scalzi is one of the newer ones
Every man who knows how to read has it in his power to magnify himself, to multiply the ways in which he exists, to make his life full, significant, interesting...Aldous Huxley
The Chronicles of Narnia are an excellent read!
I was an adult before I read these books...how sad...
BOOKS: The Other Channel
My lifelong love affair with books and reading continues unaffected by automation, computers, and all other forms of the twentieth-century gadgetry. — Books in My Life Robert DOWNS (1903- )
A room without books is like a body without a soul. .....Marcus T. Cicero
To feel most beautifully alive means to be reading something beautiful, ready always to apprehend in the flow of language the sudden flash of poetry. ......Gaston Bachelard
The library connects us with the insight and knowledge, painfully extracted from Nature, of the greatest minds that ever were, with the best teachers, drawn from the entire planet and from all our history, to instruct us without tiring, and to inspire us to make our own contribution to the collective knowledge of the human species. I think the health of our civilization, the depth of our awareness about the underpinnings of our culture and our concern for the future can all be tested by how well we support our libraries. — Cosmos Carl SAGAN
The library is not a shrine for the worship of books. It is not a temple where literary incense must be burned or where one's devotion to the bound book is expressed in ritual. A library, to modify the famous metaphor of Socrates, should be the delivery room for the birth of ideas - a place where history comes to life. — Cited in ALA Bulletin, Oct. 1954, p.475 Norman COUSINS (1915- )