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Showing posts from April, 2015

This Is Sadie by Sara O'Leary and Julie Morstad

Your imagination is the strongest force you can possess, and this is a story about imagination. Albert Einstein said, "Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world." 
I fell in love with the concept of This Is Sadie. How can you not, when it teaches you to travel into your mind and embark on an adventure that anything is possible. You can make and do and be lots of different things. 
 Sadie sometimes lives inside a book. Sadie sails all the way around her room and back again. 

The book also teaches kids about respect: "Sadie has learned to be quiet in the mornings  because old people need a lot of sleep."
And, the book teaches kids about responsibility: "When it's time to start the day, Sadie tidies her room." 
But best of all, it teaches kids about one of my favourite things: Imagination.

And my favourite line of all (apart from the "books" image posted), is this:
"Sadie likes to make boats o…

The Pocket Butler by Charles MacPherson

These are a few of my favourite things from Charles The Butler...

Charles The Butler (as he is fondly know as) is back with a new compact guide to modern manners, business etiquette and everyday entertaining. Already an expert in etiquette, Charles MacPherson surely knows how to pack a pocket-sized wallop in The Pocket Butler. 

The Language Of The Butler

"You always have just one chance to make a first impression." 

Charles The Butler reminds us of this important rule in his book, and has a few suggestions on how to create a good first impression. 

"When meeting someone for the first time, repeat his or her name in your conversation." 

The Do's and Don'ts of a Handshake

"A badly executed handshake, poorly timed, will inevitably create a negative impression."

So, what makes a handshake effective? 

"It should be genuine and friendly; it should not be tentative or indifferent."

The Perfect Bar

Bringing back old favourites like the art of folding napki…

An afternoon with Sara Gruen and Lori Lansens

The rain didn’t dampen our spirits…

After all, authors Sara Gruen and Lori Lansens were in the house. If you remember Water For Elephants (the book, and then the movie starring Robert Pattinson and Reese Witherspoon), then you know Sara Gruen needs no introduction. Neither does New York Times best-selling author and screenwriter, Lori Lansens.  
The Duke Of York in Yorkville, Toronto, set the stage for this intimate mix and mingle for book sellers and influential bloggers. It was hosted by Chapters Indigo and Random House Canada, hours before the authors were scheduled for an official public appearance at Appel Salon (TorontoPublic Library).

The event consisted of three things that just were the perfect ingredients to lift my spirits. The first crucial ingredient were of course the authors. Yes, despite the overcast weather pattern in Toronto over the last few days (…I’m sure Vancouver residents are having a laugh right now), there's no way I was going to let the rain dampen my spir…

SuperMutant Magic Academy by Jillian Tamaki

There is an absurdness to SuperMutant Magic Academy. But seriously, would you expect anything less from a title like that? So instead of deterring, it is the catalyst that pushes you to pick up Jillian Tamaki's book and steamroll your reading.  And, boy are you glad you did. Because in this oddly bonkers graphic novel, lie gems of insights. 

How does something seemingly insignificant become art? Jillian Tamaki makes his point by illustrating a dicussion between the students regarding an empty soda pop can. This is one of the many neat things that make you smile and have that epiphany.

Another moment in SuperMutant Magic Academy pokes fun at the way we perceive others in our society. In this snippet, one student sees the the other as having the perfect life, with her perfect body and sculpted looks. But as you can see, that perception is flawed. Perfection only lies in the eye of the beholder. 

SuperMutant Magic Academy consists of many individual characters and their experiences in t…

Snow White and the 77 Dwarfs by Davide Cali

We all know the story of Snow White and the adorable dwarfs: Sleepy, Happy, Doc, Dopey, Sneezy, Bashful and Grumpy. Davide Cali has a different version in his new book for ages 3-7. Snow White And The 77 Drawfs is a hilarious parody on the original version. In the original book, Snow White signed up to take care of seven dwarfs (with their own quirks and personalities). Now, imagine multiplying that number tenfold. With 77 breakfasts to make, 77 packed lunches to prepare, 77 pants to mend, (and don’t even get started on the dishes), Snow White finds herself in quite a conundrum. Has she taken on more than she has bargained for?  
What ensues is a grumpy Snow White (yes, it is possible in Davide Cali’s version) who decides to drop everything and take her chances with the witch. The ending definitely goes against the Disney classic, and puritans may be quite upset with this version of the tale. However, Snow White And The 77 Dwarfs is a delightful satirical take on a classic tale, which …

The Secret Of The Golden Flower by Caroline Stellings

Teenage spy and kung fu expert Nicki Haddon is back!

The second book in the Nicki Haddon Mystery, The Secret Of The Golden Flower once again features Nicki Haddon, now sixteen years old. The book begins with her arrival in London, where she will be undercover helping the British Secret Service infiltrate a drug cartel that is smuggling large amounts of heroin into the country. She has to keep her mission a secret, even from her parents, who think she is here to train at a martial arts school for elite athletes.
Her ally is Fenwick, the family’s butler at her home in Toronto’s exclusive Bridal Path. Yup, if you haven’t gathered yet, her adopted parents are super rich. Her mom makes regular visits to a plastic surgeon in London. The Haddon’s own an upscale chain of hotels around the world and had adopted Nicki from China as an infant sixteen years ago. If you’ve read the first book The Scratch On The Ming Vase, you’d know that one of the things Nicki wants most in this world is to find he…

Ruby by Cynthia Bond

Evocative, haunting, honest. This literary depiction feels like a piece of history.
“Ruby Bell was a constant reminder of what could befall a woman whose shoe heels were too high.”
These are the intriguing words that start off Cynthia Bond’s new book Ruby. It is also a tale that caught the eye of Oprah Winfrey and made it to her esteemed Oprah Book Club. And, it’s easy to see why: rift with tension from racial conflicts to dark forces that reign over humanity, the book is a cross between a Stephen King thriller and a historical narrative. Yes, there is even a symbolic crow that makes an appearance in the book.
The story follows two characters – Ruby Bell (of course) and Ephram Jennings – through the course of their lives. Ephram has not been able to get the beautiful girl with the long braids running through the red dust and piney woods of Liberty, their small East Texas town, out of his mind.
One of Oprah’s favourite passages from Ruby describes Ephram beautifully.
“The magical thing a…