Thought for the Day:
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”
~ Will Durant ~
Gifts for My Writer Friends:
David Griffin Brown has a guest post HERE on The Creative Penn that will help you create memorable characters.
Edie Jarolim has a post HERE with 5 Tools to Track Your Writing Submissions. This is something I really need to be better about.
I have been working on some picture books lately and found this terrific post HERE from Inkygirl with some great free templates, helpful links, and other good information.
On Tuesday morning, my daughter Sara will leave for Bemidji State University to take my grandson, Gehrig, to begin his college career. It’s a very exciting time. I’m not sure how much blogging I will get done in the next couple weeks as I will be flying to Minnesota to ferry the car back to California. My daughter can’t take enough time off to make the round trip. If I’m here, great. If I’m not, please understand and know I will be back soon.
Years ago, when I was teaching at Independence High School in San Jose, CA, I had a LOT of Filipino students. They were delightful, hardworking students and their families were generous and caring. In all my middle-grade reading, I don’t remember running across books that included Filipino characters or anything about their culture. When I saw My Fate According to the Butterfly by Gail D. Villanueva available for review from the Manhattan Book Review, I was really excited to read it. I was not disappointed. Here is the review I wrote for them.
Sab is only a week away from her eleventh birthday, but it looks like it won’t be a great one. Her mother is away on business, her father doesn’t live with them, and her older sister, Nadine, hasn’t spoken to her father in over a year. Her dream is to have everyone together for her birthday, but it’s not looking good. Sab’s best friend, Pepper, helps Sab spy on Nadine to see if they can figure out why Nadine refuses to speak to their father. But when Sab gets a visit from a black butterfly, something her superstitious father had told her portends death, she decides she will do whatever it takes to repair the family before she dies.
Author Gail D. Villanueva has written a book that will give readers a real taste of life in the Philippines with their superstitions, their formal ways of addressing people, their prejudices, poverty and hunger, the overcrowded conditions in neighborhoods and on transit, and most of all, the destructive drug trade. Her writing is superb, the dialog seems very natural, the characters are well-rounded and interesting, and the story is compelling. This is a terrific addition to the middle-grade canon.
I have an ARC of this book for one of you. All you need do is be a follower or subscriber (it’s free!), have a U.S. address, and leave a comment below. If you would like extra chances, please share the link to this post on Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media outlet and let me know you have done that. If you are reading this in your email, please click HERE to get to my blog, then click on the title of the post, and leave a comment. And don’t forget to check for other Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday posts at the Greg Pattridge’s blog HERE.