Staff Review - Jeanette | Northshire Bookstore

Staff Review - Jeanette

How Carrots Won the Trojan War

Once upon a time I meet an author. Not an unusual event in a bookstore, but this author stuck in my mind because she was fun and giggly and very much a kindred spirit!  Her name is Rebecca Rupp. Her middle-reader novel, The Dragon of Lonely Island is still one of my favorite books. But a new book of hers, How Carrots Won the Trojan War (while like her other non-fiction works) is not my usual reading. First it is non-fiction. And while I've read some non-fiction (even willingly and not mandatory for a class assignment) it is not first on my list of readings.

But when I heard that carrots helped win the Trojan War, I had to take a chance on a friend. And it was a chance worth taking! Rupp has taken vegetables to a new level. She has traced the funny, serious and unusual facts and stories of 20 different vegetables: such as asparagus (a least favorite veggie of mine due to an unfortunate dinner preparation for a couple of children I was babysitting) and how it seduced a French King. Such as corn with its connection to a famous Transylvanian. Such as Pumpkins (a favorite pie of mine and a food for a family legend) and of course turnips (that vegetable that ties in with pumpkins and has a history that would give me a starring role in a Junior-High Play—which to this day I've still not gotten my academy award for!) (READ MORE)

How Carrots Won the Trojan War: Curious (but True) Stories of Common Vegetables Cover Image
ISBN: 9781603429689
Availability: Click Title for IN STOCK Location
Published: Storey Publishing, LLC - October 7th, 2011

Betsy Ross

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Betsy Ross Cover Image
By Becky White, Megan Lloyd (Illustrator)
Call or email to see if a used copy is available.
ISBN: 9780823419081
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Holiday House - September 1st, 2011

Sweet, simple and detailed all rolled into one. Read about the process of how Betsy Ross made the most recognizable symbol of American history. Each illustration looks like a patchwork quilt as White tells you how each piece of silk and cloth was torn, sown and made into the stripes and stars that become the American Flag. Perfect for early readers or toddlers. ~ Reviewed by Jeanette

Jefferson's Sons

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Jefferson's Sons: A Founding Father’s Secret Children Cover Image
ISBN: 9780142421840
Availability: Backordered
Published: Puffin Books - January 10th, 2013

This novel for 10 to 14 years old shows a completely different side of Jefferson. Not only was he the father of our country and a number of children, but as history shows, he was a slave owner who had children with one of his slaves, Sally Hemings. This story is how two of his sons and another slave child saw the man, the history surrounding him and their own stories: one son who would be able to escape slavery but leave behind everyone he loves and one who will take a different path and a third child who because of his birth will probably never be free. ~ Reviewed by Jeanette

Worst of Friends: Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and the True Story of an American Feud

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Worst of Friends: Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and the True Story of an American Feud Cover Image
By Larry Day (Illustrator), Suzanne Tripp Jurmain
ISBN: 9780525479031
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Dutton Books for Young Readers - December 8th, 2011

This longer picture book of how two friends became not so friendly then put aside differences near the end of their lives is touching, informative and accessible to all readers.  It is a lovely way to be introduced to people we know a little about, but in a more human light. ~ Reviewed by Jeanette

The Cloud Spinner

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The Cloud Spinner Cover Image
By Michael Catchpool, Alison Jay (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780375870118
Availability: Special Order
Published: Knopf Books for Young Readers - March 13th, 2012

A young boy can weave cloth from the clouds! When the greedy king sees the fantastic scarf the boy created, he demands the boy make him many clothes for him and his family. But soon there are fewer clouds in the sky and while the King, the Queen and Princess are all finely dressed the people of the kingdom have no water for the crops or  the other benefits that the clouds used to give. This is a soft and thoughtful story about conservation, greed and what is truly needed. Jay’s illustrations are quirky and filled with many hidden (and not so hidden) surprises. ~ Reviewed by Jeanette

Things Will Never Be the Same

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Things Will Never Be the Same (26 Fairmount Avenue #5) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780142401552
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Puffin Books - May 24th, 2004

This is dePaola's fifth installment in the 26 Fairmount Avenue series. After being given a diary for Christmas, almost second grader Tomie tells of his adventures in 1941. With his characteristic illustrations and amazing humor, dePaola creates a delightful look into the life of a precocious young man who tackles many different adventures and events. ~ Reviewed by Jeanette


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