Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Whimsical Word of the Week

Isolophilia (n.)
strong affection for solitude, being alone.
Example: Most introverted writers naturally enjoy a sense of isolophilia.

Monday, October 3, 2022

Bibliophile's Corner

Frigg's Journey to Anasgar
by Deb Cushman

Back Cover Description:
Is there such a thing as too much adventure?
When dreams come true...
They may not be all you imagined!

Captured by ogres! Exhibited in a freak show! When Frigg dreamed of adventure, this was NOT what she expected. After trolls attack Frigg's colony, the young dwarf and her friends escape and embark on a perilous journey to find the legendary dwarf colony of Anasgar for help.
Blundering Bloodstones!
Can a dwarf, a faery, an elf, and a unicorn convince the defiant dwarves of Anasgar to help fight the trolls?
Or will her friends and family be enslaved forever?

My Thoughts:
This recently released middle grade novel is just the book for any young reader who enjoys fantasy stories! It's full of adventure, friendship, and humor, and its cast of magical creatures is sure to delight children page after page. I highly recommend Frigg's Journey to Anasgar to readers aged eight to twelve!

Click here to read my recent interview with the author, Deb Cushman.

Friday, September 30, 2022

Storyteller's Journey

The Magic of Nature
I've always felt that like a good novel needs sensational settings, colorful characters, and a poignant plot, so too, does a writer need those items in her own life for inspiration.

We've had a lovely autumn in the Pacific Northwest so far. The trees, fields, and waterways around our common property always offer me an abundance of inspiration, but this September the weather has been extraordinary. The dappled autumn light has danced upon the ponds and creeks causing me to feel as though I live in a fairy tale. 

Since all my stories for children feature scenes filled with trees and wildlife, living in this rural area of Washington State has become not only the perfect place for me to receive inspiration, but to find solace from the chaos of the world. There is a magic in nature, after all.

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Whimsical Word of the Week

Mangata (n.)
the reflection of the moon on the water.
Example: The harvest moon's mangata illuminated the Highland loch.

Monday, September 26, 2022

Bibliophile's Corner

The Antlered Ship
by Dashka Slater 
illustrated by The Fan Brothers

Flap Copy Description:
When an antlered ship arrives in the harbor, an inquisitive fox joins a flock of courageous pigeons and a herd of hungry deer on a quest for adventure, tasty grass, and the answers to some of life's most mysterious questions.

My Thoughts:
The Antlered Ship is one of the most imaginative picture books I've read in quite some time. Couple that with the award-winning talents of illustrators The Fan Brothers, and this extraordinary adventure story is sure to delight all young readers. I highly recommend The Antlered Ship for children aged four to ten!

Click here to learn about the author, Dashka Slater.
Click here to learn about The Fan Brothers.

Friday, September 23, 2022

Storyteller's Journey

The End of an Era?

While I'm a true-blue American, I have strong ties to Europe, since three of the four branches of my family immigrated to the U.S. in the early part of the twentieth century: one from England, one from Norway, and one from France, by way of Italy. (The fourth had emigrated from England the first part of the eighteenth century.)
My Norwegian grandmother told me stories of how she sent care packages to her relatives living in Norway during World War II.

I've always had strong ties to my Norwegian roots, as well as to those from France. However, since both my father and mother were/are half English, I'm half English too. So, when Queen Elizabeth II passed away earlier this month, I found myself mourning Her Majesty. Call me old fashioned, but her dignity, sense of duty, and commitment to service, were traits I always admired.

During the days leading up to her funeral, the television coverage in the U.S. was blanketed with all sorts of bits of history and fascinating stories about the life and legacy of Queen Elizabeth II. Many commentators used the phrase: "It's the end of an era." For some reason that bothered me. While I know they were referring to her death, and the end of her historic reign, I reflected on the impact her dignity, duty, and service had had on the U.K., and really on the entire world. By all accounts, every single world leader would have been anxious to meet Her Majesty - maybe more than any other person on earth.

Why is that? 

I believe it's because of her commitment to serving her country in as non-biased a manner as humanly possible. Consequently, she was not only a Royal in title, but a Royal in her behavior. I'm sure it wasn't easy for her. It was a sacrifice, in so many ways. She was a peacemaker. And when she made a mistake, she always humbled herself and tried to make it right - even though she was the Queen of England.

Is it the end of an era of decency?

While Queen Elizabeth II is sadly now gone, her example lives on. How would our world change for the better if each of us vowed to do our best to be peacemakers - and to be people of service?

As an author of books for young readers, I enjoy challenging children to be all they can be - to shoot for the stars. However, it's important that we also remind children of those timeless characteristics of dignity, truth, and honor. There are too many voices of dishonor in our world right now. After all, our children will author the future of our planet.

While it's the end of the era of Queen Elizabeth II, may it never be the end of an era of decency. Keep calm and carry on.

By artist, Eleanor Tomlinson

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

Whimsical Word of the Week

Susurration - (n.)
voiceless whispering, murmuring, or rustling.
Example: The susurration of the September leaves announced the arrival of autumn.