Be Book Smart Sweepstakes

Want to promote literacy? Like shopping? Reading is Fundamental (RIF) and Macy’s have teamed up with a promotion and sweepstakes to raise money to give books to children.

First of all, if you donate $3 to Macy’s for their Be Book Smart campaign from June 24, 2011 to July 31, 2011, they will give you a coupon for $10 off on a $50 purchase. You may visit any Macy’s store in the United States to donate. Macy’s then gives the $3 to RIF.

Secondly, if you visit the Be Book Smart Facebook page, you can sign-up for a sweepstakes to win a $500 gift card. (Just be aware that you will be asked to reveal some personal information.)

So, look for a Macy’s store near you, and help get books into the hands of children.

Happy shopping!

48 Hour Book Challenge Wrap Up

How long has it been since you’ve spent the weekend reading?

For the 48 Hour Book Challenge, I read a total of 14 hours from 7:00 p.m. Friday until 7:00 p.m. tonight. Some of time was spent reading aloud, some was spent reading while wiping down the bathroom mirrors, but most of the time was spent with my nose in a good book.

The Summary:

The Iron Butterfly: Memoir of a Martial Arts Master by Choon-Ok Jade Harmon with Ana María Rodríguez. (See yesterday’s post. Full review is now posted).

Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya, which is required summer reading for incoming freshman taking honors English at our local high school. Now that I have read it, I can understand why. Although this book probably is not for everyone, the author does use many of the techniques in the writer’s toolkit in a fairly transparent way. Even a novice writer can find the foreshadowing, for example.

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian by Sherman Alexi, which I finished today. Yes, it does deserve the hype. Sherman Alexi threw out the standard writer’s toolkit Anaya used and made up his own fresh ones.

I had listed Redwall by Brian Jacques, Book 1, but didn’t read that one.

I also read from Bill Bryson’s A Walk in the Woods, and a few other nonfiction titles for various upcoming events.

I’m going to throw in one of those Amazon widgets, because I’m too tired to make all the covers look pretty.

If you hadn’t done so, run on over to the 48 Hour Book Challenge links and take a look around. I found some great books to read in the upcoming months, including:

Science Fair Season: Twelve Kids, A Robot Named Scorch… and What it Takes to Win by Judy Dutton at Abby the Librarian blog.

Iron Guy Carl at Boys Rule Boys Read suggested The Philosophical Breakfast Club by Laura J. Snyder, The Throne of Fire by Rick Riordan and Milo: Sticky Notes and Brain Freeze by Alan Silberberg.

Ms. Yingling Reads reminded me I wanted to read Shirley Duke’s Unthinkable. You need to go see how many books she read.

MotherReader has Bitter Melon by Cara Chow, which might be interesting to contrast with The Iron Butterfly.

At Check It Out, Jone reminded my I wanted to read The Book Thief and The Mermaid’s Mirror.

Thank you to everyone who stopped by and who participated. What a wonderful community!

48 Hour Book Challenge Half Way

As the half-way mark slid by in the 48 Hour Book Challenge, I have managed to read for 8 hours.

Saturday morning I finished The Iron Butterfly: Memoir of a Martial Arts Master by Choon-Ok Harmon with Ana Maria Rodriguez.  This unique memoir is by a woman who, against great odds, became a master of the Korean martial art, Kuk Sool Won. Born during the economic turmoil of post-war Korea, Choon-Ok survived an impoverished childhood where her family had to scrounge for food to have one meager meal per day. She was not allowed to attend school because her family had no money to pay the fees. When her family moved to the city, she wanted to study martial arts. She had an opportunity to learn when her sister married Chief Master of a school. Eventually she came to the United States via an arranged marriage to an American who studied the same form of martial arts. Yes, the two of them corresponded by mail and had only met once before they were married!

Interesting contrast to the book MotherReader read, Bitter Melon. Hope Iron Butterfly doesn’t get lost in the whole Tiger Mother thing.

I read aloud to my son from Bill Bryson’s A Walk in the Woods, (selecting leaving a few of the “juicier” parts out).

Saturday afternoon, I plowed through Rudolfo Anaya’s Bless Me, Ultima. This books is assigned summer reading for our local high school’s honors freshman English class. I’m still processing it.

Then last night, my son and I read a book about cacti for an upcoming science club meeting.

I was thinking that writing might be more cathartic than reading, but sometimes there’s nothing like getting caught up in a good book. What do you think?

Iron Butterfly
Hardcover: 224 pages
Publisher: Pelican Publishing (February 8, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 9781589808904
ISBN-13: 978-1589808904

Bless Me, Ultima
by Rudolfo Anaya

Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Warner Books (April 1, 1999)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0446675369
ASIN: B000LP674W

48 Hour Book Challenge Begins

Due to an unexpected and very sorrowful event yesterday, I almost decided not to participate in this weekend’s 48 Hour Book Challenge at MotherReader blog. I have decided to go ahead, but with a heavy heart.

I will start with The Iron Butterfly: Memoir of a Martial Arts Master by Choon-Ok Jade Harmon with Ana María Rodríguez, because it is about a woman who overcame a great deal of adversity.

I will be starting in a few minutes at 7:00 p.m. MST.

Good luck to everyone.