Thursday, February 26, 2015

Three Books for Children by Shaila Abdullah

Saffron Dreams by award-winning Pakistani-American author Shaila Abdullah holds a special place in my heart.  Not only is it an incredibly poignant and profound novel, it's also the first book I received in the mail to review, sent to me by Shaila's agent at the time, Kristine, in June of 2009.  Soon after that, I interviewed the author, and also read and reviewed Beyond the Cayenne Wall, a collection of short fiction by Shaila Abdullah.  Today, I'm very pleased to present mini reviews for three children's books from the Growing With Love series by Shaila Abdullah, published by Loving Healing Press.  Each book is written from the perspective of a child, and each deals with a different challenge in a sensitive, original, and appealing manner.

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"And although she cannot stand, walk, talk, or play, I love her all the same!"
~ My Friend Suhana, Shaila & Aanyah Abdullah

The cover of this book makes me smile.  Published in 2014, My Friend Suhana: A Story of Friendship and Cerebral Palsy by Shaila Abdullah and her daughter, Aanyah, is a darling book that will touch your heart.  When Aanyah was in second-grade, she and her mother started to volunteer at a community center where they helped special needs children.  This book was inspired by an essay Shaila's daughter wrote about her friendship with a girl she met there who has cerebral palsy.

The narrator in the book is an unnamed 7-year-old girl, who says that her friend Suhana "is like no other girl that I know".  Suhana has cerebral palsy, which makes it hard for her to move and learn like other children.  Each week, Suhana's friend visits her at the community center where she and her mom go to help out at a special needs class.  She comforts Suhana by rocking her in her arms, and brings her pictures she has made of Suhana's favorite things, such as flowers.

I loved this picture book, and think it will delight children. The illustrations are bright, cheerful, and friendly.  The book talks about cerebral palsy and special friendships in a manner that young children will understand.  My Friend Suhana will help children learn the value of being compassionate to those who face physical challenges, and may encourage them to care for and make friends with children with special needs.

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"And for once, Rani did not ask why.  Families ran in different directions.  Rani's friends were running behind their own families in a sea of color--red, blue, pink, and yellow.  In their hands, they clutched what little they could save from the floods--a book or two, a favorite doll, a change of clothes."
~ Rani in Search of a Rainbow, Shaila Abdullah

Published in 2014, Rani in Search of a Rainbow: A Natural Disaster Survival Tale
by Shaila Abdullah and illustrated by Bijan Samaddar is based on the 2010 floods that affected 20 million people in Pakistan, which displaced over 8 million children.
Rani in Search of a Rainbow tells the story of this devastating natural disaster through the eyes of 8-year-old Rani.  Terrible rain comes to Rani's village in Pakistan, causing rivers and creeks to overflow, and Rani's grandma, Daadi, says that they must leave.  In fact, everyone in the village must leave, with only a few possessions.  Rani's family is rescued by helicopter and flown to a refugee campsite with hundreds of others, who now live in tents.

Although Rani is living in a tent, she has a positive attitude.  She yearns to be helpful to others, and when her mother helps deliver babies, Rani joins her.  After Rani and a boy, Juju, accidentally tear an orange and white striped blanket in half, they become friends.  This book features their friendship, and a special celebration of Eid, with small (but much appreciated) portions of haleem (a kind of stew), and popsicle treats afterward. 

With simple words and colorful illustrations, Rani in Search of a Rainbow will teach young children about this natural disaster, and about the ways of another culture.  It features a short glossary of Urdu words.  The story is uplifting and hopeful, even though the flooding was a terrible disaster in Pakistan that displaced millions of people. 

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"He is one of those children who should have come with a manual.  You know, those handbooks that tell you how something (or in this case somebody) works."
~ A Manual for Marco, Shaila Abdullah

A Manual for Marco: Living, Learning, and Laughing with an Autistic Sibling, published in 2015, is the newest book, written and illustrated by Shaila Abdullah, and also illustrated by Iman Tejpar, a very talented 12-year-old artist.  Additionally, background art for this book was provided by 10-year-old Sophia Pirani, 11-year-old Aanyah Abdullah, and 2-year-old Aaliyana Abbdullah.  The design and illustrations of this book are absolutely remarkable--it is hard to believe that children helped create them!

This fabulous picture book is dedicated to the Ali family, who inspired the author to write this book.  A Manual for Marco is mostly written from the point of view of 8-year-old Sofia, Marco's younger sister.  In the book, Sofia describes the things she likes, and the things she dislikes, about her autistic brother.  The book lists things that are special about Marco, such as his exceptional ability in math, and things that are "not-so-special", such as his restrictive diet (he cannot have anything with wheat or dairy in it) which affects the whole family.  It mentions that the family uses lists to help Marco, and the book itself features several lists.  A Manual for Marco is loving and clever, and funny, at times.

Suitable for young children, A Manual for Marco would be helpful to children with autistic siblings, who may struggle at times with their feelings.  There are tips for parents by Dr. Salima Ali at the end of the book, as well as a list of online resources for families.

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Many thanks to Victor from Loving Healing Press for sending me this wonderful trio of books.

Thank you for reading!  Your comments are welcomed.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

The Last Good Paradise: Review and Giveaway

“Absinthe is the only decent drink that suits an artist.”
~ Paul Gauguin 


Having read two other books by best-selling author Tatjana Soli, The Lotus Eaters (2010) and The Forgetting Tree (2012), I was excited by the prospect of reading her new novel, published this month, The Last Good Paradise.  As is often the case when I read a new book by a tried and true author, though, I keep my fingers crossed and hope for the best, because I "worry" that I may not enjoy it quite as much as the previous ones I've read. 


"She took a huge breath, closed her eyes, and dreamed that soon her life as a painter would start, or her life as a mother, or as co-owner of a successful restaurant, even if she kept her law day job, which was really a day-and-night-and-weekends job. "
~The Last Good Paradise, Tatjana Soli

In The Last Good Paradise, Ann is a lawyer in Los Angeles, a "lowly associate" at Flask, Flask, Gardiner, Bulkington, Bartleby, and Peleg.  She feels insignificant and unfulfilled as a lawyer, as if she's not living the life she was meant to live.  Ann wants to have a baby and to go to art school and to show her art in galleries, but she's postponed her own dreams for the sake of her husband's dream.  Her husband of ten years, Richard, is about to open a restaurant with his partner, Javi.    The three celebrate Ann's thirty-eighth birthday, and look forward to the restaurant's opening.  But this joy is short-lived.  Due to Javi's financial recklessness, his ex-wife, Inez, has just sued him, and has filed an injunction to freeze the restaurant's account, which is actually Ann's and Richard's life savings, meant to pay for the entire first year of restaurant expenses.  Panic-stricken, Ann rushes to the bank and quickly withdraws all of the money out of the account, before the court order arrives at the bank.  She and Richard escape this financial fiasco by flying to Papeete, the capital of French Polynesia.  On Papeete, they meet Loren, who runs an "unplugged", pricey resort, Tahitian workers Titi and Cooked, and another American couple, rockstar Dex Cooper (from Prospero) and his attractive young "muse", Wende.

I enjoyed many things about this novel, especially the enticing emphasis on cooking and food.  Gradually, we learn more about each of the main characters--Ann, Richard, Javi, Dex, and Wende, Loren, Titi, and Cooked--who are searching for love, peace, and purpose, to varying degrees.

Tahiti photo from Wikipedia

While reading The Last Good Paradise, I was whisked away to the warm, tropical setting of French Polynesia (where Gauguin settled in later years to paint).  There are surprises throughout the book, and it held my attention quite well, most of the time.  A few parts of this book left me puzzled and wondering.  (Pardon my little spoiler, but does Wende really need to punch Dex in the nose?  Ouch!)  The story became a bit "blurry" to me in certain parts of the book (the last fifth or so).  But, I was reading an ARC of this book, so perhaps the final edition is more polished and clear. 

Overall, I found this novel to be rather intriguing, and I looked forward to my time reading it.  Tatjana Soli writes beautifully.  She's a very talented contemporary writer, in my opinion, one of the best.  The Last Good Paradise is about finding your purpose and passion, and the courage to pursue it.  Perhaps this is how we create our own positive, private paradise.  I think this is what Tatjana Soli does as an author.

Thanks to the author and TLC, I'm pleased to offer a giveaway for The Last Good Paradise (U.S.A. /Canada).

  • To enter this giveaway, simply leave a comment.
  • For another chance at winning, become a follower of this blog, or indicate that you're already a follower.
  • For an additional chance, post about this contest on your blog, Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter.
  • For one more chance, let me know what book you would bring with you to a tropical island such as Tahiti.

Enter by 5 PM PDT on Monday, March 9.  One winner will be selected randomly and announced on Tuesday, March 10.  Good luck to all!

Special thank to Lisa from TLC for providing a copy of this book. For more reviews and other features, please visit the other stops on TLC's book blog tour for The Last Good Paradise.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Aoléon: The Martian Girl - Part Two

“Which is exactly my point--being telepathic, my thoughts and memories are not always my own.  Your individuality in spirit, in thought, and in your wide range of emotions is what makes Terrans unique among all other races of sentient beings.  In a sense, I think many other races either envy or fear you--for what you are and what you might become."
~ Aoléon: The Martian Girl (Part Two), Brent LeVasseur


Telepathy is a common theme in modern science fiction, and many extraterrestrials have telepathic ability.  In Aoléon: The Martian Girl (Part Two: The Luminess of Mars), written and illustrated by Brent LeVasseur, more attention is given to the matter of telepathy, which is introduced in Part One.  Aoléon says that Martians are a telepathic race, who communicate telepathically.  It has its advantages, of course, but it also has its disadvantages (Aoléon can't keep any secrets from her mother).  And with the way things are going right now, Mars feels like a dystopia of sorts, due in part to telepathy.

Since I can't communicate with my readers telepathically at this very moment, I'll straight out tell you a bit about this book. ;)  I read an ARC of Aoléon: The Martian Girl (Part Two), comprised of three chapters: Luminess (Chapter Six), Bizwat the Procyon (Chapter Seven), and Martian Space Academy (Chapter Eight).

In Part Two of Aoléon: The Martian Girl, we meet many other Martians.  Along with Gilbert, we meet the formidable Luminess, when Aoléon and Gilbert go on a special mission to investigate the Luminon, who's suspected of planning an invasion of Earth to steal cows.  Later, Aoléon brings Gilbert home for dinner, and he meets the members of her family, her mother, Phobos, her father Deimos, and her little sister, Una, as well as Zoot, Una's pet moog, an odd-looking little creature.  They forgo the usual evening consumption of galact, and order platters--Martian pizza--delivered by Aoléon's friend, Bizwat (the delivery guy) who is a Procyon Commando, and who uses his Saturn Pizza delivery job as a cover.  When Gilbert attends school, the Martian Space Academy, with Aoléon, we meet Charm (misnomer), Quarkina, Neptunian "exchange students", Plutarch Xenocrates (the teacher), and others.  Gilbert tries to blend in at Martian school, but as a Terran, he stands out like a sore thumb.  At least Gilbert has some telepathy now, and knows what the other students think about him, although the thoughts he hears are chaotic, and more than a bit overwhelming.  Plutarch Xenocrates gives a lesson about the history of Martian people, and they even take an exciting field trip to the Galactic History Museum.  Later in the day, after school, Gilbert and Aoléon, frolic as they train in zero-G.  The last chapter ends with a game of psi-ball, "the greatest game on Mars", in a "friendly" match between the Martian Space Academy and the Martian Science Academy. 

Pizza: no civilized world can exist without it.

Fun, fun, fun!  Gilbert and Aoléon are a charming dynamic duo, and Aoléon: The Martian Girl (Part 2 : The Luminess of Mars) is an irresistibly fun book.  The brightly-colored, three-dimensional graphics delight the eye and fit the story perfectly.  This time, I read the story on my computer, rather than on my iPad mini, and enjoyed viewing the graphics on a larger screen.  The characters are too cute for words, and there's a healthy amount of humor in the story, which is quite appealing.  I found myself laughing out loud (but not too loud) at least a few times.  As I said in my review of Part One, Aoléon: The Martian Girl has MOVIE written all over it--I can practically see and hear it now.  As a book, though, it's a quick and absorbing read, the second part of a five part book.  I enjoyed many of the sci-fi adventures and ideas in this book, which includes a handy dandy glossary of terms, and think that this sensational book is especially suitable for (even reluctant) readers in middle-school, as well as older readers with an interest in Martian matters. 


Many thanks to Laura from iRead Book Tours for sending me an advanced readers copy of this ebook. For more reviews, please stop by iRead's book blog tour for Aoléon: The Martian Girl (Part Two)

Thank you for reading! Your comments are welcomed. 

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Humbled by the Journey


"I have been touched by angels.  I have been blessed.  And I have been humbled by this journey."
~ Humbled by the Journey, Mike Fernandez

Last month, I presented the book Humbled by the Journey: Life Lessons for My Family... and Yours by Miguel "Mike" Benito Fernandez (with Martin Merzer)--or simply Mike Fernandez in a spotlight post, along with a giveaway for this book.  This is my "official" review now, with a few more details and thoughts about this book, and a special feature as well, a very brief "interview" with Mike Fernandez.

Published at the end of 2014, Miami businessman Mike Fernandez wrote Humbled by the Journey at the urging of his wife, Constance.  In the book, we meet his beautiful family: his wife, Constance, his four sons, George, Alexander, Michael, and Cristofer, his daughter, Michelle, his parents, Lieba and Mario (Mami and Papi), his sister, Pilar (Pili), and his granddaughters, Stella and Daniella.  This book is dedicated to Constance, and to the rest of Mike's family.

Humbled by the Journey resembles a travel journal, complete with dated "journal entries" and photographs of the trip, and of his family.  The book has an antiqued look and feel to it.  Mike says he wrote this book for the sake of his children, and for those who follow them, so that they will know their history.  Humbled by the Journey has a message for everyone: "You have to take care of those who come after you." 

This memoir provides the history of his family, and focuses on Mike's El Camino walking journey, from the French town of Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port to Santiago, Spain.  Why did Mike walk El Camino?   When Mike's granddaughter, Daniella, was 19 months old, she needed open-heart surgery.  Thankfully, her operation at Miami Children's Hospital was a complete success, and Daniella is fine. But while Mike was at the hospital, he met a mother in the waiting room who was worried about her child.  This meeting changed Mike's life.  After talking to this distraught mother, he realized that there are many others in the same situation, who have children needing health care that they can't afford.  This became Mike's incentive to make the pilgrimage he'd been considering for a while, a 508-mile hike through France and Spain, to raise funds for that mother, and many others like her, whose children need treatment.

"To me, God is goodness.  God is doing good to and for others."
~ Humbled by the Journey, Mike Fernandez 

Mike worked with a trainer, Victoria, in Utah, to prepare for his strenuous journey.  In 2013, Mike hiked along El Camino de Santiago (The Road to Santiago), with a pledge for every mile.  He raised over $5 million for Miami Children's Hospital.  The walk was also a way for Mike to concentrate on the sense of gratitude that he feels strongly.

In spite of some health issues, including a bad back, Mike began his walking journey on September 22, 2013, a time of year when there are fewer pilgrims (those who walk El Camino are called pilgrims).  Each year, the pilgrimage of El Camino is experienced by more than 200,000 people.  Most make the trip from May through early September, during the dry season, but Mike and his friend, Cesar Alvarez (who walked for about a week), started their walk in late September.  Together, they went to the office to get their special passports (which are stamped at each stop where pilgrims spend the night), and began their pilgrimage. 

"A new experience began when I took my first steps on the first day on El Camino.  In the beginning days, my body wanted to quit after six or seven hours, and I would cover no more than 10 miles in tough terrain.  Now, after three weeks, I can cover 20 miles a day, rest for the night and be ready for the next day with a smile."
~ Humbled by the Journey, Mike Fernandez

Humbled by the Journey is Mike's incredible story, in the form of a striking book.  I truly enjoyed reading it, and imagined myself on this walking journey.  While walking, everyone says buen camino, or good road, which means "have a safe pilgrimage".  This book makes the arduous journey seem like a joy, and features pictures and descriptions of the hike, scenery, and lodgings. Throughout the book, Mike calls the journey rigorous and magnificent--I'm sure that it is!  I love to walk, and perhaps one day, I will also walk El Camino, which I've been interested in since seeing the movie The Way (as mentioned before).  Mike hopes his book will inspire others to achieve their dreams and to share their blessings.  Blessed to be a blessing!

In Humbled by the Journey, Mike refers to his walking journey, as well as to his journeys in life.  As mentioned in my spotlight post, Mike was born in the rural town of Manzanillo, Cuba.  During revolutionary times in 1964, his family was exiled from Cuba, when Mike was 12.  They traveled first to Mexico and then to America, and soon moved to New York City.  Mike desired to attend Xavier High School in NY, and worked hard to pay for half of his tuition.  At Xavier, he met a very important mentor, Father Duminuco, who, in addition to his parents, helped Mike develop strong values and character.  After high school, Mike studied architecture very briefly at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, then left college to enlist in the U.S. Army's 82nd Airborne Division in 1972.  One day, he jumped out of a C-130 aircraft at 1,250 feet as required, but his parachute only partially deployed.  Needless to say, he was greatly relieved when it finally did open fully, about 300 feet above the ground.  The realization that he could have died that day gave him a new appreciation for and approach to life, which made him more productive and driven.  Over the years, with passion and perseverance, Mike became a very successful entrepreneur, business owner, and philanthropist.  Although Mike's study of architecture was quickly abandoned, ground will be broken in 2015 for Xavier's first new building in a half-century, the Duminuco-Fernandez Building.  Mike calls himself fortunate to have led such a life, and is grateful for it.   

"I have always considered myself a good (if often lucky) salesman."
~ Humbled by the Journey, Mike Fernandez

This book also focuses on Mike's business philosophy.  As mentioned in my spotlight post, Mike is a very successful businessman and entrepreneur.  He founded MBF Healthcare Partners and Simply Healthcare Plans, and is a major benefactor to Miami Children's Hospital.  His business partner and friend, NBA legend Earvin "Magic" Johnson, praises Mike and says that he's "honest, smart, caring and committed".   Mike shares a lot of tried and true, valuable business advice in this book, his ideas and ideals.  Chapter Six: Doing Good Business, Doing Good Work features tips for succeeding in business.  Mike says that "every business deal has to be a win-win".  I really enjoyed this aspect of the book, and Mike's philosophy of doing business in a helpful and honest way is outstanding. 


Page 125

The tone of this book is honest, humble, friendly, intelligent, encouraging and inspiring.  What a fascinating memoir, about an extraordinarily generous humanitarian!  Although Mike has been extremely successful financially, he's down-to-earth, giving, and grateful.  It comes across in this book.

As mentioned in my spotlight post for Humbled by the Journey, all proceeds from book sales go to The Early Childhood Initiative Foundation, a nonprofit focused on early childhood education and “school readiness"--making high-quality health, education, and nurturing available and affordable for all children.  The idea is simple yet profound: if children are nurtured at an early age, they will do better in the present and future, which will benefit everyone. 

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After reading Humbled by the Journey, I asked Mike a couple of questions through his agent, Jessica.  To my surprise and delight, he answered the questions right away! :)
 

1. What was the most surprising thing about your 508-mile walking journey along El Camino de Santiago?  

MBF: The simplicity and civility we all met during the pilgrimage.  On this magical path, with every step one takes, as you walk over 1000 year old Roman bridge, step on ground where soldiers bled in the fields of battle, forests which paths seem as if they were tunnels...  One begins to find one's true self. 

Every hiker begins to take off "their masks".  Under the weight of our backpacks our minds begin to synch with the sound of every step and the clinking of our walking stick as it bites the dirt we are traversing.  After a few days, I began to see a new self.  A simpler self.  At this point each Pilgrim was much simpler, much more human. 

If you saw a person off the trail dressing their blisters, soon you would find two or three strangers trying to help...

I had mentioned to one of my sons during a disagreement that " I am too old to change".  I was wrong!  A few weeks after I had returned home, we were enjoying a BBQ, a family gathering.  He came close to me and said, " You were wrong".  I asked, "What are you taking about?"  He responded, "You did change on that walk".
  


2. Writing involves making discoveries.  What did you discover while writing your book? 
 
MBF: As a former soldier in the U.S. Army, I often would hear a jump master, at the open door of an airplane say, " Life is like a parachute.  It has to be open in order for it to work".   As I look back at 30 plus years in business and 60 plus years of life,  I recognize the importance of having an open mind.  Of pragmatism.

Thank you very much, Mike, for taking the time to answer my questions.  Walking does seem to nurture our sense of simplicity and optimism.  Being open to possibilities, yet practical--both are important characteristics in life.  A pragmatic person is sensible, grounded, and practical.  That describes you, Mike; you seem quite grounded and practical, although you've been extremely successful as well.  You enjoy your journeys in life, and are both grateful and humble.  I was honored to receive an early copy of Humbled by the Journey from Jessica Jonap, and it was my sincere pleasure to read your memoir.

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Thanks for reading!  Comments are welcomed and appreciated.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Really Random Tuesday #91: A Book Winner and a Simple Gourmet Sorbet



Please help me to congratulate Melwyk from The Indextrious Reader, the lucky winner of A Matter of Mercy by Lynne Hugo.  Congratulations, Melwyk!  I hope you'll enjoy reading this beautiful novel as much as I did.

If you didn't win this time, please take a look at the other book giveaways listed on the right side of my blog.  Click on the book covers to enter the giveaways that interest you.

As you can see, I'm continuing to design logos that coordinate with the colors in the book covers I post, thanks to CoolText.  I may not continue this for every book giveaway I host though.  ;)

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Amy's Raspberry Sorbet

Although it's winter now, it's the perfect time for a a taste of summer.  Over the summer, my sister, Amy, made us a wonderful raspberry sorbet for dessert one evening.  It's a healthy indulgence (my kind of oxymoron) you can whip up in no time.  Amy used a blender, but you don't need a blender.  All you need is a package of frozen raspberries, and a bit of soymilk.  I took the berries out of the freezer to soften them a bit, then pureed them in a bowl with a spoon (because truthfully, our blenders are fit to be tied).

Ingredients:
10 oz package of frozen raspberries
1/4 cup of soymilk
1 teaspoon of cacao nibs, optional
Mint leaves for garnish, optional



Directions:
Mash softened frozen berries in a bowl.  Mix in about 1/4 cup of soymilk, until the mixture is creamy.  I used plain, unsweetened soymilk, but you can use whatever kind you prefer.


Stir in 1 teaspoon of cacao nibs, if desired.  Spoon sorbet into ramekins and garnish with fresh mint, if desired.  That's it!  (Or put into freezer until ready to serve; partially thaw before serving.)  This recipe makes about three servings.  For more servings, simply use more berries and soymilk.


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Appearing on random Tuesdays, Really Random Tuesday is a way to post odds and ends--announcements, musings, quotes, photos--any blogging and book-related things you can think of.  I often announce my book giveaway winners in these posts, and sometimes I share a recipe. If you have miscellaneous book news to gather up and are inspired by this idea, "grab" the button for use on your own blog, and add your link to the "master" Mister Linky on the Really Random Tuesday page.

Have a terrific Tuesday!  Thanks for reading.  Your comments are welcomed.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Fancy Words ~ For Wondrous Words Wednesday

Don't be fancy, just get dancy
Why so serious?
 ~ Raise Your Glass, Pink

We all know the meaning of fancy, a word that's an adjective, noun, and a verb.  I usually think of fancy as an adjective meaning decorative or ornate.  But do you know the meaning of these fancy words?




Fancy meeting you here!
(I am very surprised to see you here!)

Fancy-pants
(Someone or something that's trying to seem too attractive or too clever, in a fake sort of way.)

Footloose and fancy-free
(This is an idiom used to describe someone who's unattached, without many responsibilities, especially romantically.)

Fancy that! 
(That's hard to imagine! Wow!)

To take a fancy to, or to strike someone's fancy
(This means to like someone or something; or you could say that something tickles your fancy; what is a fancy?)

Fancy-schmancy
(As it sounds, this term is used to poke fun at something that's overly fancy.)


Now say the word fancy twenty times in a row, and it will lose all meaning.  Ah, but now I'm acting like a fancy-pants.  Fancy that!



Hosted each week by Kathy from BermudaOnion's Weblog, Wondrous Words Wednesday is a fun celebration of words.  What is your favorite fancy word?

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Really Random Tuesday #90: A Thank You and a Book Winner

It's time to give thanks.  Thank you, CoolText!  You really are cool.  I use this terrific, free graphics generator as needed to create custom logos for my blog.  (I keep a link to the site on my blog for convenience.)  I just created a new one for my book winner: 


Please help me to congratulate ds from Third-Storey Window, the winner of Joy Street by poet Laura Foley.  I hope you will enjoy this collection of joyful poems, ds, and that it will inspire you to write some poetry of your own (you have the talent!).   


If you didn't win this book, I have other wonderful book giveaways listed on the right side of my blog, so please take a look.  I update the them on a regular basis, so you'll find a variety of new giveaways here.  :)

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Appearing on random Tuesdays, Really Random Tuesday is a way to post odds and ends--announcements, musings, quotes, photos--any blogging and book-related things you can think of.  I often announce my book giveaway winners in these posts.  If you have miscellaneous book news to gather up and are inspired by this idea, "grab" the button for use on your own blog, and add your link to the "master" Mister Linky on the Really Random Tuesday page.

Thanks very much for stopping by!  Your comments are welcomed.

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