Seabiscuit: An American Legend by Lauren Hillenbrand

sea biscuit

Seabiscuit: An American Legend  by Lauren Hillenbrand

In the early 1900s Charles Howard became a businessman, forcefully ushering in the automobile era in San Francisco after owning a bicycle repair shop. As his wealth grew, he bought a large ranch in northern California and became interested in thoroughbred horse racing. Tom Smith was a horseman being relegated to the fringes of society as cars took the place of horses for transportation throughout the country. When Howard bought a less-than-classic horse named Seabiscuit, with Smith as a consultant/trainer, they found the ideal jockey for Seabiscuit in Red Pollard, an experienced jockey who had never worked for a winning stable. As Seabiscuit trained and raced on west coast race tracks, the established eastern racing establishment scoffed at Seabiscuit’s ability and speed. Through the ups and downs of the horse’s career, Seabiscuit, his jockey, owner and trainer captured the attention and devotion of the American public all the way up to President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Americans during the Depression hungered for good news and inspiration, which Seabiscuit and his team supplied.

Even readers who are not fans of horse racing will find much to capture their attention in this book. Through her own health challenges, the author spent 4 (four!) years researching all the figures involved, finding people in their 90s who had seen Seabiscuit race. I found the book completely enthralling and moving. The author has written acknowledgements at the end of the book that explain her writing and research process in detail. The book also includes an interview with the author after the index. Both additions are worth reading.

Review by Ms. Goldstein-Erickson

Doctor Sleep by Stephen King

doctor sleep

Doctor Sleep by Stephen King

More than thirty years after he wrote The Shining, Stephen King continues the story of Danny Torrance, the small child from the first book who was torments by both malevolent ghosts and his alcoholic father.  Dan, as he is now called, is a grown man with alcohol issues of his own.  He’s trying to finally get sober and begins setting into a small town in New Hampshire, while going to AA for the first time and being “sponsored” by his boss. During this same time, a group calling themselves the True Knot travels across the USA in RV’s looking like harmless retirees.  Sadly for any child with the Shine, they feed on the children’s power as they slowly torture them to death.  Dan finds himself in the middle of an epic battle when the True Knot discovers Abra Stone, a severely gifted child who has been mentally messaging Dan since she was a baby.

This book is guaranteed to keep readers glued to the pages.  I would suggest reading The Shining first, but this story will still make sense if you haven’t.  I highly recommend it to all King and horror fans, and anyone wanting to escape into an epic tale of good versus evil.  At just over 500 pages, this may be one of King’s shortest books in recent years, alway a plus for our busy students.

shining

 

Welcome Back – 2014-2015

flowers

Mrs. Goldstein-Erickson and I would like to send out greeting and a huge welcome to all our new and returning students.  We have been working hard over the last year to keep your library up-to-date.  Here are some of what you can look forward to this year in here:
  • New books, both current and classic fiction.
  • New books; non-fiction for your personal interest and research.
  • E-books to help you with your research projects.
  • A set of  chrome books for class use.

Please stop by and say hello when you get a chance; we miss all our students from last year and are having a great time meeting the new freshman!

SYNC Week 7 Free Audio Books

Great Choices this week and I’ve already downloaded both!

forgive           october

Here is the link to the downloads.  Remember that you only have until July 2 to download them, but them they are your’s forever on your computer.

You might recall that we reviewed Forgive Me earlier this year and just loved it!  Click HERE to access our review.  The other title, October Mourning has been on my To-Read list for awhile.  It’s a novel in verse that is the writer’s response to the horrific killing of 21-year-old Matthew Shepard, a gay college student who was lured from a Wyoming bar and beaten and left for dead by two young men.  The book got great reviews and is in our BHS collection.

 

We hope you’re having a wonderful summer.  Ms. Goldstein-Erickson is currently at the American Library Association conference in Las Vegas, learning about how to help our students and collecting Advanced Readers Copies to give away in the fall.  Ms. Provence is having a quiet summer reading and writing reviews for next year’s blog.  Feel free to friend her on Goodreads.com if you want to keep up with her one-sentence responses to the books she’s reading.

Week 6 – Free Audiobooks from SYNC

week6-classic-green-gables          week6-ya-kill-you

A mixed bag for this week’s free audiobooks from SYNC.  First on offer is a  childhood favorite  that might be fun to revist or listen to if you missed it like me when you were younger.  The second title is by one of Ms. Goldstein-Erickson’s favorite YA authors, Ally Carter.  CLICK HERE for her review of the book.

You can download these books through Thursday, June 26 at:

 http://www.audiobooksync.com/free-sync-downloads/

Remember that they’re your’s forever once you download them, so go ahead and do it even if you don’t have this to listen right away.  I’m personally stocking up to move them to my iPhone for my daily walks.

 

 

 

 

Last day for this week’s free SYNC audiobooks

So sorry I’m late on this, but today is the last day for these two books.  Code Name Verity is amazing.  Click Here for our review of it.

week5-classic-hiding            week5-ya-verity

Here’s a link to the download page!  Please comment here if you like the books.  Remember that you don’t have to listen to them now, but you do have to download them to your computer/phone during the free week.

Free Sync Audiobooks, June 5-11

Here are this week’s free SYNC audiobook downloads.  You can take either one or both a the following link:

Free audiobooks  Remember that you only have until June 11 to download this set.

sync 6:5

What would you change?
Imprisoned in the heart of a secret military base, Em has nothing except the voice of the boy in the cell next door and the list of instructions she finds taped inside the drain.
Only Em can complete the final instruction. She’s tried everything to prevent the creation of a time machine that will tear the world apart. She holds the proof: a list she has never seen before, written in her own hand. Each failed attempt in the past has led her to the same terrible present—imprisoned and tortured by a sadistic man called the doctor while war rages outside.
Marina has loved her best friend, James, since they were children. A gorgeous, introverted science prodigy from one of America’s most famous families, James finally seems to be seeing Marina in a new way, too. But on one disastrous night, James’s life crumbles, and with it, Marina’s hopes for their future. Marina will protect James, no matter what. Even if it means opening her eyes to a truth so terrible that she may not survive it… at least, not as the girl she once was. Em and Marina are in a race against time that only one of them can win.
All Our Yesterdays is a wrenching, brilliantly plotted story of fierce love, unthinkable sacrifice, and the infinite implications of our every choice.

(description courtesy of Goodreads.com)

 

 

sync 6:55

 

Many of you may have read this for your English classes.  What I like about it is that it’s a full cast version, which makes it much more enjoyable to listen to.  If you haven’t read it, it has all the cool stuff–corrupt politicians, hatred and friendship, betrayal, and murder.

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