New Fiction Titles on the New York Times Best Seller List (3/12/06)

Have you been following the plagiarism trial in London over the sources Dan Brown used in writing his blockbuster? So far it has not had much of an impact on the astounding sales of The Da Vinci Code which is still #3 after 153 weeks.

At #4 is The Templar Legacy by Steve Berry: another book about the Knights Templar riding on the magical coattails of the above bestseller.

At #6 is The Two Minute Rule by Robert Crais: Elvis Cole does not make an appearance but the scene is LA in all its corrupt glory and a murder to be avenged.

At #8 is The Old Wine Shades by Martha Grimes: Scotland Yard's own Richard Jury is back in yet another pub in England where he hears a disturbing tale of disappearance and possible foul play.

Wordless Wonder - The Flower Man

It's been a while since we've seen much in wordless picture books. The Flower Man is a dandy for studying the details and changes in each picture while develop your own imaginary story. This wordless book may make you want to seek out past favorites like creepy castle, yellow umbrella, or home.

Joy of cooking without meat

If you are tired of wiping and bleaching that goes along with cooking (to prevent the spread of salmonella, etc), try cooking vegetarian meals.

A few favorite cookbooks:
How it All Vegan by Sarah Kramer and Tanya Banyard
The Family Vegetarian Cookbook by Nava Atlas
Vegan Planet by Robin Robertson

Cant wait to try:
Vive le Vegan
Vegan with a Vengeance

Also, check out the following blogs for ideas:
The Vegan Lunchbox
Bunnyfoot

Happy Birthday, Alice Hoffman

Today, March 16, is the birthday of Alice Hoffman, author of more than twenty books and several screenplays. Her latest book for young teens, Aquamarine about a wise mermaid, has recently been made into a film. Hoffman's books are infused with magic so that sometimes it's dificult to tell the real from the unreal. Ghosts can be as important in the development of the story as the flesh and blood characters like in The River King and the moral concerns can be both contemporary and timeless.

What do a slapstick comedian and the father of vocalese jazz have in common?

Jerry Lewis has just been awarded the French Legion of Honor. The 80-year-old wore slippers to the ceremony and, when he spoke, apologized for not speaking French, but said that "'even if the French people cannot hear my language, they have always heard my heart..'"

Lewis joins many other distinguished recipients of the Legion of Honor, including jazz great Jon Hendricks, who once told me that "a woman's first child is her husband."

Everybody's a comedian! ;-)

The Play Ground

The Play Ground

Get those big, round sunglasses out. The UM School of Music Opera Theatre is presenting Jackie O from March 22 to 26 at the Lydia Mendelssohn Theatre. Society’s fascination with celebrity and pop culture is the theme of Jackie O, a playful pop opera of facts and fancies about one of America’s most enduring icons, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. Jackie attends a 1968 avant-garde New York “happening” with Andy Warhol, meets the seductive Aristotle Onassis for the first time, has a dream duet with Maria Callas, and embraces her fate as a symbol of JFK’s idealism. Jackie O captures the mystery, the tragedy, and the glamour that epitomized this pop icon. Oh Darling, don't miss it.

Former British Army captain tops charts!

James Blunt, a former captain in the British Army, is now topping charts with his debut album Back to Bedlam. His first single “You’re Beautiful” is currently #3 on the Billboard Top 100 Chart. His emotionally charged music may be enjoyed by those who are already fans of Jack Johnson or Damien Rice. The hold list is growing, so add yourself soon!

Imagine the Edge!

These are not just for kids. M.T. Anderson has two new books with two different illustrators and they are lovely "share alouds" for elementary school ages! In Me, All Alone, At The End Of The World and A Serpent Came To Gloucester Anderson's melodious prose wrap around dramatic pictures and make these original tales memorable.

How to Love a Rat

Walter: the Story of a Rat by Barbara Wersba is the story of an unlikely relationship between Walter who has been able to read since childhood and Miss Amanda Pomeroy, recluse and writer of books about a secret agent mouse. Walter begins to write letters to Miss Pomeroy, his first, stating: "I live here too," and her reply, "I know." Interspersed throughout this small gem are references to other mice heroes and classics of literature. A sweet story for the child and lover of literature in al

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