Reviews by cherylo
Master of the Awkward Pause
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Jimmy's best friend and crush has moved to New York, but he is barely able to get out of his comfort zone by leaving his Oakland neighborhood. He sets out east by bus after sending her a letter asking to meet at the Empire State Building at sunset on a particular date for a reunion suited to a movie resolution. What actually happens goes awkwardly against his hopes, but still he's the better for having made the trip.

I first fell in love with Jason Shiga's graphic work by reading Bookhunter, which I cannot recommend highly enough. The absurd and awkward are his medium. Somehow he can illustrate the awkward pauses of conversation when two people narrowly miss understanding each other like no other.
Much better than the movie adaptation (Home)
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This is one of my most favorite books intended for young readers ever. The aliens have come to take over the earth, and young Gratuity, Tip to her friends, has the job of explaining the impact of their arrival for an essay contest. Ultimately, she goes above and beyond the scope of the original assignment and takes the reader on a terrific romp of defiance against the invaders.

Although the movie Home is based on this wonderful book, other than its starting point and a few scenes and bits of text, it diverges wildly both in ultimate direction of the plot and messages.

Both the audio book and printed book have charms, so it is a puzzle which to recommend more highly. Perhaps for a summer travel adventure, get both so the family can enjoy the wonderful performance while the passengers can follow along and enjoy the graphic elements in the printed copy.

Smekday has concepts and themes that may be upsetting to younger readers, including harm to and separation from family members, as well as the pending destruction of the Earth. Most middle school and older children should not only tolerate but ultimately enjoy the ride.
Much better than the movie (Home)
»
This is one of my most favorite books intended for young readers ever. The aliens have come to take over the earth, and young Gratuity, Tip to her friends, has the job of explaining the impact of their arrival for an essay contest. Ultimately, she goes above and beyond the scope of the original assignment and takes the reader on a terrific romp of defiance against the invaders.

Although the movie Home is based on this wonderful book, other than its starting point and a few scenes and bits of text, it diverges wildly both in ultimate direction of the plot and messages.

Both the audio book and printed book have charms, so it is a puzzle which to recommend. Perhaps for a summer travel adventure, get both so the family can enjoy the wonderful performance while the passengers can follow along and enjoy the graphic elements in the printed copy. I particularly enjoyed the audio book performance of the alien character J-Lo.

Smekday has concepts and themes that may be upsetting to younger listeners/readers, including harm to and separation from family members, as well as the pending destruction of the Earth, so use with caution. Most middle school and older children should not only tolerate but ultimately enjoy the ride.
Before the main event
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Before the events recounted in the Anubis Gates, Jacky was haunted and searching for peace. When dealing with ghosts, not everything is as it appears. Jacky comes across another haunted soul trying to free herself from the ghost of her dead husband, and together they visit Nobody, a recluse living on a houseboat on the Thames, who is reputed to be able to help those with problems such as theirs.

This is a wonderful dip back into the weird world of one of the most inventive time travel stories ever.
Fantastic exploration
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For those who despair of ever having the time to savor the Great Novels, worry no longer! This volume offers a tasting menu of selections to tantalize while enlightening the would-be connoisseur on the properties of both haute cuisine and literature. I most enjoyed the directions in Chaucerian verse on how to caramelize onions and description of the virtues of tarragon in the style of Jane Austen.