Cornelia Funke books

One day while browsing in the bookstore, I picked up a copy of Dragon Rider by Cornelia Funke and thought ohhh dragons!
A few years ago I fell head over heels in love with another Cornelia Funke book – Inkheart.
Inkheart is Fabulous with a capital Fab.
I must reread it soon and write a review, I also read the other two titles in the trilogy (why is everything a trilogy??!) but loved the first book more than the others.

Anyway, I picked up (and bought) Dragon Rider, and sat it on the pile of books on my bedside table – finally grabbed it for reading this week.
I try REALLY hard not to judge a book by it’s siblings – but I fear I judged Dragon Rider before I had even opened the cover – and the story so far has disappointed.
There’s a talking rat who is incredibly fussy and some scenes where I lose track of who is talking, what they are saying, and why any of it matters.

I hate giving up on a book though, so I will persevere – and when I am done I will write a proper review, and then go find my copy of Inkheart.

In other news, the children have spent all of my money at their school book fair. Good reason to be broke.

Thanksgiving

I did not grow up celebrating Thanksgiving, but after moving to the US I decided to embrace this wonderful tradition of eating Christmas dinner a month early.
I enjoy Thanksgiving – my kids bring home handprint turkeys and autumn leaf art which I hang around my kitchen. The trees don’t do a very good job of changing color where I live now, so the kid artwork fills in.
I like the excitement of Christmas being right around the corner, without feeling any of the stress of the holidays (yet).
I’ve had a few quiet Thanksgivings at home with just the spouse and offspring, but most years we get together with our adopted family – the group of friends who are, like us, far from their actual families.
We eat, we drink, we play with the kiddos – it’s fantastic – and it’s what I am most thankful for.

A review: Divergent by Veronica Roth

Divergent

Divergent (Photo credit: prettybooks)

Divergent is another tale of dystopia. And it’s really rather good.
The main character, who is telling you her story, does not introduce herself… you don’t even find out her name ’til page 10… because she is Abnegation and the way of Abnegation is one of selflessness.

The Abnegation dress in gray clothing, they have plain hairstyles, live in plain homes and have quiet, simple lives. They believe in always putting the needs of others first. They keep their mirrors covered, ask few questions and follow a strict set of rules which ensure that their every action, every thought, exists only to benefit others.

It’s a lifestyle with which the MC, Beatrice, struggles to feel comfortable.

Along with Abnegation, there are four other factions into which all of the citizens are divided.

Candor values honesty above all else, and the truth must always be told, no matter how difficult.

Amity values peace and happiness, they strive to find joy in all things.

The Erudite value knowledge, they believe that the best life is one of constant learning.

Dauntless value bravery, and insist on a life of challenge and risk.

At the age of sixteen, each citizen takes a secret aptitude test to determine which of the five factions best suits their nature. After the test comes the choosing ceremony, where each teen declares publicly which faction they will join, where they will stay for the rest of their life.

Beatrice loves her family, but she does not love Abnegation. As she prepares for the aptitude test, she is worried. She does not want to live her life in Abnegation, but she does not want to reject her family. Even the idea that she has a choice causes her distress, would a girl raised Abnegation choose for herself?

There’s a lot more to the story, but I don’t like spoilers.
To find out what happens to Beatrice, and to find out what the title means, you’ll have to read Divergent.

I’d love to pass this book along to my 12yo but she fears all novels which may dilute her love for The Hunger Games.