Friday, July 31, 2015

Walking and Listening to "Better Nate Than Ever" and "Five, Six, Seven, Nate!"

Federle, Tim. Better Nate Than Ever. 5 cd's.  5 hours 45 minutes. Recorded Books. 2013, $25.88, ISBN: 978-1-4703-6938-5.

Federle, Tim. Five, Six, Seven, Nate! 7 hours, 10 minutes. Simon and Schuster Audio. 2014. $17.99, ISBN: 9781442374201.

I'm almost embarrassed to admit how often I'd walk by the Nate books and say, "I have got to read these books and see what everyone is raving about." and just kept walking on by without picking them up. Well, I can now finally say that I've listened to them, one right after the other, never wanting Nate's story to end. 

Nate and his best friend Libby are obsessed with Broadway, knowing so much in fact that they would be guaranteed to win any Broadway trivia game they ever played. It should come as no surprise then that when Libby hears about an open call audition for E.T., the Musical  she and Nate hatch up a plan to get him to New York without his parents finding out. Mishaps, missteps, and rainstorms ensue but nothing will stop Nate from auditioning and landing his first part in a Broadway musical. 

I enjoyed hearing Tim Federle read his books, who better to read their book than the author themselves. No one knows the characters, the thoughts and the feelings behind it all better than them. Listening to these books made me want to get on the next plane and head to New York. It wasn't just all the theater talk, it was references to things that make New York a wonderful place, the subway, fire escapes, Amy's Bread and so on.

Favorite Chapter Title in Better Nate Than Ever: A Salsa Crawl is Not a Dance Move
Favorite Chapter Title in Five, Six, Seven, Nate!: A Delirious Pinball That's Made Out of Sugar

One afternoon as I was out walking and listening I decided to head down one of the beach accesses and spotted this man fishing off of the rocks. I hope he caught something good that day. 

Walking and Listening to "Greenglass House"

Milford, Kate. Greenglass House. 10 cd's. 11 hours, 43 minutes. Recorded Books. 2014, $108.75. ISBN 978-1-4906-6437-8.

Milo is beyond excited for Winter Break. Not only does he have a break from school, but it is also the only time of year that Greenglass House, the inn his parents run, is unoccupied with guests.  Unfortunately, things quickly change when guest after guest after guest begin to arrive.  While  Greenglass House doesn't typically receive the most upright and honest of guests, Milo and his family are quite shocked when some items belonging to the guests begin to go missing. Not sure what has brought this eclectic group of guests to the hotel and who is responsible for the stolen items, Milo and Meddy (the chef's daughter) begin an Odd Trails role playing game to figure it all out. 

I quite enjoyed listening to this book, hearing the story unfold and the tying of the different characters and why they were at the house together.  While I was initially confused with the explanation of all the rules and roles in the Odd Trails game Meddy was explaining to Milo, it all became clear once the game began. Chris Henry Coffey does a nice job narrating this book. While the differentiation of character voices was minimal, I was never confused as to who was speaking and the story moved along at a nice pace.

Favorite Chapter Title: The Moonlighter's Knack

Summer is here and the beaches are crowded. This person was able to stake out their spot early one morning.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Walking and Listening to "The Forbidden Library"

Wexler, Django. The Forbidden Library. 7 cd's. 8 hours 42 minutes, Listening Library, 2015, $45.00, ISBN 9781101891124

After the disappearance and presumed death of Alice's father, she is sent to live with her "uncle" a man she has never met, never heard of and didn't know she had any relation to. Not having any other place to go, she arrives at Uncle Geryon's, which is not your typically run of the mill home. She rarely sees anyone, it eerily silent and her meals and dishes seem to magically appear and disappear. Alice is thrilled when she is sent to help Mr. Wurms out in the library, a place she had been forbidden to go to alone. It is here that she hears a familiar voice, the fairy Vespidian, whom she had heard her father speaking to shortly before his death. He is talking to Mr. Black, hoping that he will be able to find The Dragon, a book that he needs in the library. Wanting to know more, Alice decides that she is going to sneak out that evening and head back to library. It is then that she meets Ashes, a cat, who she quickly befriends and who helps her discover that she has an ability that she never knew she had. Alice, it turns out, is a Reader, a magician, who Geryon wants to become his apprentice. Not really feeling she has any other choice but to become his apprentice, she accepts it and begins her search for The Dragon, hoping to find it before anyone else does.

I really enjoyed listening to Cassandra Morris read this book. She sounded youthful but not in a "I'm trying to sound like a kid," kind of way. She did a great job keeping the story moving along and I really enjoyed her vocalization of Ashes, the cat.

Favorite Chapter Title: Eavesdropping Again

Paddling season is well underway and every afternoon as I am out walking the ocean is full of canoes and paddlers.