Thursday, January 26, 2006

I am blogging via the laptop from the feather bed with a heating pad on my back. Who knew picking up lots of ARCs (Advance Reading Copies of new books) could be dangerous? Well, I should have since I have a "little problem" with a herniated disk, but a bad back was not going to stop me from hauling those books home. I could have mailed them but I would have been waiting for over 2 months for the books like I did last Midwinter. I probably would have been fine if I had set the alarm correctly and not woke up an hour and 1/2 before my flight went out. My suitcases looked like monkeys had packed them! I am lucky the only thing I forgot in the room was my phone charger. I was yanking the two suitcases full of books and a few clothes down the hall as fast as I could when I felt the "pop" in my back and I knew I was in trouble, but I was going to make that flight no matter what. And so were my books! Thank goodness the airport is only 15 minutes away from downtown San Antonio. As Steve was grunting while loading my suitcases into the car he told me it was clear I had "sacrificed" filling my suitcases with mall bargains for books! I sure did and the books I didn't pay for! It was like Christmas unpacking them.

The cat and I read Patrick Jones' Nailed yesterday. Sophie loves the heating pad! This is one gutsy book about a teen who has been struggling to find his inner strength. Yes, non-violence is good, but by not standing up for himself, long-tinted-haired grunge dressing Brett is called less than macho names, especially by the jocks. His life revolves around quietly resisting and rebelling against his angry father and playing music with his buddies Alex and Sean. Then petite and worldly Kylee steps into his life when they both work on the same play together. Kylee is rebelling in her own way and wants to be the center of Brett's world, that is until she gets bored with him having other things to do in his life than spend all his time with her and moves on to her next conquest, Sean. Brett is devastated and for the first time turns to his Dad for help. Brett isn't through rebelling and a speech before the student body results in ACLU lawyers becoming involved. But when Brett and Alex step out on the loading dock behind the school during the Prom, Brett realizes now is the time he has to stand up for himself, even if he is physically beaten into the cement by the jocks. The message about the nail that sticks out the farthest gets hammered hardest is a bit heavy at times, but this is a book that all teens should read, conformists and non-conformists alike. Certainly had me thinking about what is "normal" in the world of today's teens.

Did you know that Ann M. Martin's The Baby-Sitters Club are back? But this time in graphic novel format, with Raina Telgemeier doing the b/w illustrations. They are a Scholastic Graphix series so now a whole new generation of upper elementary and middle school girls can read about the antics of 7th grade Mary Anne, Kristy, Stacey, and Claudia. I think the 4th -6th grade girls will love them.

All for now.