Okay, so the first recommendation isn’t a book, it’s a dvd.
But it’s the perfect compliment to books.
Over the holidays, we read about various Portuguese explorers
who went sailing off into the unknown looking for a sea route
to the islands where spices could be found.
At school, I was led to believe that all those maritime explorers
were just off searching for new land,
but it seems that they were just out shopping for spices
and trying to figure out how best to get to the super-spice-market.
It all makes sense now that the explorers have been linked together by a common thread.
So, after all that reading, I found this dvd at our library – “The Spice Trail”.
I was a little hesitant at first, thinking it could be dead boring,
but it was excellent.
I never knew that spices could be so interesting.
The documentary twines a little history with the cultivation and harvesting of various spices.
We thoroughly enjoyed it and it gave us a better appreciation of spices.
My sons even stopped in front of the spice section at the supermarket
and checked out the various spices they learned about.
The next recommendation is a book.
It’s a book I chose to read to myself
after hearing others recommend it as their favourite children’s book.
Well, I didn’t think it was ‘that’ good but it was a good book,
especially if you are looking for a book about the issue of poverty and homelessness.
The story is cleverly crafted for children (probably in upper primary school years)
by placing a giant invisible cat (that’s Crenshaw) in the midst of the story.
Having Crenshaw in the story, makes a deeply emotional issue
a little less scary for a younger audience.
“Straw into Gold” is my next recommendation
and it’s a BRILLIANTLY written book.
(I’m now on a frantic hunt for all things Schmidt).
The language in this book is superb!
And discussion starters! Oh boy!
There are so many discussions that could be had,
centred around the ideas in this little book.
Initially, I picked up the book because I liked the idea of the story –
it’s a follow-on from the story of Rumpelstiltskin
(or, more accurately, “The Miller’s Daughter”).
And, yes, I loved the story,
but what most impressed me was the skill of the author.
This book is gold!
The last book is an Esolen book.
We’re just starting this book for our bookclub
but I know it will be excellent.
I mean, it’s written by Esolen. How could we go wrong.
Don’t panic. The author isn’t actually hoping to destroy the humanity of children.
The author is pointing out how modern society is leading parents to unconsciously destroy the humanity of their children.
It’s a wake-up call type of book,
just as the author’s book, “Ten Ways to Destroy the Imagination of Your Child”,
was a reminder that our parenting, or lack of it, has very serious consequences.
Oh, and if you are a fellow ‘Esolen-lover’,
did you know that he has a new book out?
“Out of the Ashes – Rebuilding American Culture”.
It’s already on my shelves and begging me to read it.
But there are these pesky children,
who demand to be educated,
getting in the way of simply dropping everything and binge reading.
Speaking of children demanding to be educated,
I best go and start our afternoon reading session.
Actually, my students are being very quiet,
hoping that I’ll forget that our lunch break is over.
No such luck kiddos.
It’s read aloud time and I never forget that.