Monday, June 9, 2014

Biographies

Today I went to the new Boca Raton library.  It is a beautiful facility and they have a great selection of books.  It was a pleasure to go and do some reading there.  I got to read some biographies today and they had some I hadn't read before.  My favorite one was called "Bad News for Outlaws: The Remarkable life of Bass Reeves" by Vaunda Michaux Nelson.  It's about a law man named Bass Reeves who started his life as a slave but ended up a famous sheriff.  It was a great story with lots of interesting details about Bass (who could shoot straight with both hands and was pretty tricky about arresting bad guys).  Here's a book trailer about it.
The second one I read was "To Dare Mighty Things: The Life of Theodore Roosevelt" by Doreen Rappaport.  I love the way Doreen Rappaport writes biographies.  She weaves together a story of the person's life, along with quotes from their own writing or spoken words in that is visually pleasing as well as compelling to read.  The illustrator, C. F. Payne, also does an amazing job of capturing the energy and curiosity of Theodore Roosevelt.  It was a lovely book.  Here's a book trailer that I thought was great.


I also read "Daniel Boone's Great Escape" which was very exciting.  It tells about a time when Daniel Boone was scouting and was then captured by the Indians.  He proved his bravery through a variety of experiences but eventually escaped and made it back to the fort and his family.  It seemed like kind of an isolated incident (he did some pretty great things during his life) and I wondered why the author would choose this one event.  The pictures were compelling but it wasn't my favorite book.


There was also a really great graphic novel about a librarian (!!)  It's called Alia's Mission by Mark Nan Stamaty.  It tells the story of a librarian (Alia) who works at a library in Iraq.  When it becomes apparent that war is coming, she starts taking books from the library and putting them in her house to keep them safe.  She has to be pretty sneaky about it because people have told her she shouldn't take the books away, but her worst fears are realized when the army comes through and people start looting.  They take all kinds of things, but leave the books, so she and her friends and neighbors come and help to save the books.  It's pretty exciting and the graphic nature of the book really helps you understand the story.  It would be a great match up with "The Librarian of Basra" by Jeanette Winters. >
The last one was "John Brown: His Fight for Freedom" by John Hendrix.  This was probably my least favorite one today.  Although the pictures were interesting, the text really wasn't.  I really wanted to like this one because I just finished reading some historical fiction based on John Brown and I wanted to get some of the REAL background story.  The best part was it was short.

Tonight I'm reading a murder mystery by one of my favorite authors, Sue Grafton.  I've read her whole series of books which started with A is for Alibi and we are now on W is for Wasted.  I love reading a series of books because you really start to feel like you know the characters.  Happy reading!

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