“The tighter you squeeze, the less you have.”–Thomas Merton
Review and Comments
The story of The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier is one of darkness and mystery. Set in VIctorian England, Molly and Kip have set out looking for work and are accepted by the Windsor family. The new job is brings on a terror that the two children were not expecting.
When Molly first arrives at the home of the Windsors, she immediately notices how dirty it is and how it looks as though it hasn’t been taken care of in ages. Slowly, she realizes that something is amiss. The old pictures of the family show them as younger looking, healthy and vibrant. Now they look pale, sickly, and their eyes look lifeless. Continue reading Hold on Tight: A Review of ‘The Night Gardener’
The Kids of the Polk Street School series is written for young readers who are eagerly beginning to stretch their reading skills to chapter books. This is quite an exciting time of new goals for children. Each book focuses on a student in Ms. Rooney’s second grade classroom.
The Beast in Ms. Rooney’s Room
“Make it a practice to judge persons and things in the most favorable light at all times, in all circumstances.” – St. Vincent de Paul
3.2 [Scholastic – reflects the grade level at which a student reading on grade could read the book independently]
Grades 3 – 5
Review and Comments
The Beast in Ms. Rooney’s Room, the first book in the series, introduces readers to several typical second grade students. Richard “Beast” Best is one of the students beginning the new school year in Ms. Rooney’s class – for the second time. Because of this, Richard has to deal with a lot of concerns before he feels comfortable in a class of younger children. What will he tell his old classmates about why he was left back? Why does he have to feel so big next to the other second graders? Why does he still have baby teeth? Why can he only read ten words? Why does he get in trouble so often? The reader understands more about Richard’s struggles through his relationships with other students who eventually support and accept him. Inevitably, there is also an irritating student who attempts to upset Richard’s adjustment to the new school year with hurtful remarks. Continue reading A Review of Two of the ‘Kids of Polk Street School’ Books
“Love has hands to help others. It has feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has ears to hear the sights and sorrows of men. This is what love looks like.” – St. Augustine
Pre K – K, 1-2 [Scholastic – reflects the grade level at which a student reading on grade could read the book independently]
Grade 3.5 [AR]
Review and Comments
Boxes for Katje is a wonderful story and an outstanding example of actually living Jesus’ commandment, “As I have loved you, so you also should love one another.” (John 13:34)
This true story begins after WWII when the people of Europe are suffering deprivations of all kinds, and charities in America are working together to relieve those affected. Katje’s tale is intertwined beautifully with the seasons, the growing needs of the citizens of Holland, the expanding generosity of the citizens of the United States, and the engaging letters of two little girls. Continue reading Virtuous Actions of Mercy: A Review of ‘Boxes for Katje’
Dads, I know what you’re thinking…I’m super busy. I don’t have time to read. Believe me, my husband has said it time and again. But what if I told you that these books were filled with great prayers, lessons, opportunities, and hope to aid you in your tremendous vocation?! They don’t have to be read in one sitting, they can be aids to your prayer life. Chapters at a time with periods of reflection are often better than taking it all in at once.
Check out this list. There are some books here that could change your outlook, give you a boost, and bring you closer to your own heavenly Father. Father Lawrence Lovasik reminds all dads that “Fatherhood is a vocation in God’s service, to not be held lightly or frivolously, but with the serious determination of serious men.” (Click on the pictures for affiliate link.)
The Original Fathers’ Manual is the first Father’s Day gift I gave to my husband. I had received The Original Mother’s Manual as a gift from my mother and loved it. The Father’s Manual is much the same. There are prayers for every possible need for one’s children, marriage, and vocation. The end lists the responsibilities of fathers for reflection. It’s a powerful book and my husband uses it often.
In Be DADitudes: 8 Ways to be an Awesome Dad, Greg Popcak takes each beatitude and explains how fathers can use these points to become amazing fathers and husbands. Greg Popcak is a counselor and presents the information in a simple way. This is one of those books that would be great for short periods of reading.
Continue reading 10 Books for Dads This Father’s Day