This book is part adventure, part mystery. Max’s parents (who are actors) are invited to sail to India to begin a stage company. When Max arrives at the port to board the ship, he discovers that there is no ship sailing for India and his parents have vanished! Max has to find a way to support himself and solve the mystery of his missing parents. He becomes a professional finder of lost things, but can he find the lost thing that matters most to him?
This book is written in a poetic style. It tells the story of Ha, a little girl who must flee Vietnam because of the war. She and her family are able to find passage on a dangerously overcrowded boat to America where they face danger from the communist helicopters above and starvation within. When they make it to the shores of their new home, however, the challenges are only beginning. Author’s own true story.
It takes a very long time before you like any of the characters in Emily Bronte’s magnificent novel. Heathcliff is pure evil, Edgar and Isabella are spoiled, Hareton is crude, Hindley is a drunk, Catherine is a drama queen, Linton is a sissy, and Cathy makes the worst choices imaginable! But you do come to feel very connected to them and in the end, two of them completely redeem themselves. Although it’s very dark and, at times, depressing, this classic is engaging and beautifully written.
In his autobiography, Henry Oertelt tells the story of the Holocaust as he lived it. Like so many other Jews, he suffered the inhumanity and brutality of the Nazi regime. But unlike so many others, he lived to tell the tale. He attributes his survival to 16 links in a chain of survival. A sympathetic Christian, his profession as a craftsman, and even his size and age are links in the chain. His theory is that if any one of those links had not existed, he would surely have become one of the millions of victims who never made it out of the Nazi death machine. These stories are so hard to read, but so necessary. If we fail to read and learn from history, we are doomed to repeat it.
The Witch of Blackbird Pond was a book that I reluctantly picked up yesterday. I was desperate for something to read. I wandered to my bookshelf and scanned the contents for something, anything I hadn’t read yet. I found this book and remembered that my daughter had read it in high school. It didn’t look interesting to me, but like I said, I was desperate. Well, once I started it, I couldn’t put it down! It is so good! It’s about a 16 year old girl (Kit) in the 1600’s. She is orphaned and has to leave her life of luxury and home in Barbados to go live with Puritan relatives in the American colonies. Her life changes dramatically as she goes from having servants and living in paradise, to working from sunup to sundown in the strict puritan village. She finds refuge with an old woman (Hannah) who lives by Blackbird Pond. The rest of the villagers think Hannah is a witch because she is a Quaker. When they find out Kit has been visiting Hannah, she is arrested and put on trial as a witch herself! The penalty for being a witch in New England in the 1600’s……..death by hanging. Great read!