MADreads

A review of My Dog Thinks i'm a Genius by Harriet Ziefert

While his master paints, Louie the dog watches enthusiastically. When it's time for school, Louie gets inspired himself to try his paw at painting. The fantastic illustrations in this book mix pencil, crayon and paint masterfully, while giving kids a good feel of what an artist's studio really looks like. With nicely done art historical references, this is a great story for any budding artist or art enthusiast. ...read more

Reviewed by Trent on
December 28, 2012 | 0 comments
Staff Best Picks for 2012 The Daily Beast is keeping a tally of books that have been mentioned on year-end "best" lists. So far Bring Up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel (which Katie loved) is leading in ...read more

Reviewed by Jane J on
December 27, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of The Journal of Best Practices: A Memoir of Marriage, Asperger Syndrome, and One Man's Quest to be a Better Husband by David Finch

Raising a family, holding down a demanding job, and sustaining a marriage are all big tasks, but as David Finch finds out, accomplishing all of these things as a person with Asperger's disease (a mild form of autism) makes them much more of a challenge. After several years of marriage some of David's habits were becoming increasingly difficult for his speech therapist wife Kristin and it was not surprising to either of them that when they completed an online Asperger's check list, David scored ...read more

Reviewed by Mary K. - Central on
December 26, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of Embrace by Jessica Shirvington

Everything changes for Violet Eden when she finds out that she must make a decision on her 17th birthday that could help to save the world. Can she become an angel and sacrifice her life, or should she deny her ancestry and risk everything? And, if her decision wasn't compelling enough, her heart is  being torn apart by Phoenix, a sexy stranger, and her steadfast companion and protector, Lincoln. Action, romance, angels and demons -- this book has it all! ...read more

Reviewed by Krissy on
December 21, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character by Paul Tough

Are you familiar with the marshmallow experiment? Researchers led by psychologist Walter Mischel in the late 1960s tested a group of small children by setting them in a room and promising them a marshmallow or two after a certain period of time. The kids were given varying instructions about visualization and waiting. Some kids ate the marshmallows right away, some kids waited to eat the marshmallows, you get the picture. The study has been recently referenced several times in child psychology ...read more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
December 19, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of A Simple Murder by Eleanor Kuhns

Kuhns debut mystery was a solid hit with the South Madison Mystery Book Group. We all liked the book which can sometimes kill a discussion,  but because of the setting and characters we found plenty to talk about.  A Simple Murder is set in 1796 in a Shaker community in Maine. How's that for something new? William Rees is a former Revolutionary War soldier who now makes a living as a travelling ...read more

Reviewed by Jane J on
December 18, 2012 | 0 comments
Recommended History Books Like reading history?  Why not check out some new history books? There are many "best of" lists out there, including the New York Times 100 Notable Books of the Year. Below are a few from a new library booklist-- History Books, Recommended ...read more

Reviewed by Kathy K. - Central on
December 14, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of My Name Is Elizabeth by Annika Dunklee

Orange, blue, white and black are the only four colors needed in this beautifully illustrated new picture book. The bold, graphic images are the perfect backdrop for a day in the life of Elizabeth, who is a perfectly normal girl with a bit of a sassy streak. If you have a name that can be shortened, you'll enjoy watching Elizabeth try to navigate a day as Lizzy, Liz, and WORST OF ALL Betsy! ...read more

Reviewed by Trent on
December 14, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of The Light Between Oceans by M. L. Stedman

The Light Between Oceans is a novel that is hard to slot into a category. Might it be considered  historical fiction? A mystery? A love story? Or even a tragedy? Readers of this well written book will not care about this, but will be quickly drawn in to the story and the description of life on a remote island where the lighthouse keeper lives alone with his family. Tom Sherborne has survived years of fighting on the Western front in World War I and has returned to Australia to ...read more

Reviewed by Mary K. - Central on
December 13, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of The End of Your Life Book Club by Will Schwalbe

Yes, the premise of this book sounds grim, but it's quite enjoyable to read. Will Schwalbe's mother Mary Anne is diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. She's got an indeterminate amount of time to spend in waiting rooms and in recovery while undergoing cancer treatments. She shares a love of books and reading with her son, so they decide to start a little book group, just the two of them, to discuss books while waiting for appointments and treatments. It's a nice idea, low pressure, and a great way ...read more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
December 12, 2012 | 0 comments
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