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Archive for the ‘Blog Progress Report’ Category

Ok, so I didn’t go to Moominland but I have been on some exciting travels which might explain my lack of blogging. Whilst I have missed my blog and the Large family, I needed time away, detached from everything so I went to Tunisia and i’ve just got back from Cyprus. After standing at the top of the Troodos mountains looking down at the streams, I can honestly say I feel thoroughly refreshed and back in the game.

So on to more important things, like it’s seven days until the publication of The Moomin’s Cookbook.

I will be buying a copy on the 8th and will post my review soon after. I do hope it’s everything it’s cracked up to be. I adore Tove Jansson more than words can describe and I hope this book gives her original concept of the Moomin family great honour. On my travels I read ‘The Summer Book’- a piece of adult fiction by Jansson and I adored it; I knew I would and I loved waiting and waiting for that right moment to read it.

Expect lots more next week. It’s good to be back.

“Sometimes, if you stand on the bottom rail of a bridge and lean over to watch the river slipping slowly away beneath you, you will suddenly know everything there is to be known” So true Pooh bear.

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Now that everything seems to be up and running on here and the blog is doing well, I’ve decided to incorporate a few daily traditions on here. They’re certainly nothing serious nor are they set in stone, most likely life will get in the waand they may be delayed a few days but the proposed ideas are as follows-

Mailbox Monday which was created by ‘The Printed Page’. If you wish to join in you can do so at http://printedpage.us/category/mailbox-monday/ Mailbox Monday is an alliterative day in which readers share with others what has arrived in the house in the past week- this can be library books, book to be reviewed or books bought. We share the most exciting ones and give a quick review of them. I think it will be great fun and lead to us all buying far too many books.

Tuesday’s Choosings will look at ‘Five of the best… ‘with a different theme each week. This coming week I shall be looking at Five of the best fairy tale anthologies (I’m just so predictable).

The Wednesday of Whimsy is exactly what it sounds like, the day in which I review a book which doesn’t really have a category. A purely fun, whimsical, absurd crazy book which deserves the honour of being reviewed purely for its imaginative scope. This review will start today so keep your eyes peeled, I’ve got a great one to start with.

The Book Blogger Hop founded by the lovely Jennifer over at Crazy For Books http://www.crazy-for-books.com/ It is a weekly event starting every Friday where you sign yourself up via her blog as a way of promotion your book blog and finding new ones. It gives great support and new opportunities to fellow bloggers.

Hope you like the sound of these new features.

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In My Mailbox. This will be a new weekly theme starting every Monday thanks to http://www.thestorysiren.com

This will also coincide with Mailbox Monday courtesy of http://printedpage.us/category/mailbox-monday/

I’m excited about this.

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I’ve just realised I completely forgot to review the new Mr Men story ‘Mr Nobody’ who feels invisible and ignored. How ironic. Sorry Mr Nobody, your time will come this week.

In preview of this week I’m reviewing a most wonderful book called ‘Jim’ which was originally published in 1907. It first caught my eye because I know a wonderful, whimsical guy called Jim who lives in Tunisia. Now the book has been re-invented through the illustrations of Mini Grey. She too is a person of interest to me and I might like to interview her about her illustration style.

Dracula will also be emerging from his coffin and leaping into a beautiful edition of Bram Stoker’s dark, absurd tale.

And finally there will be a whole host of childhood historical heroes in a look at adventure tale anthologies.

So that’s this week in preview, Jim, Dracula and historical heroes- that’s my invite list sorted for the mad hatter’s tea party!

I am also considering some new features to set up on here. I would like to include author and illustrator interviews, twitter length reviews as I have so many books I want to review but not the time to review them in length so in similar fashion to children’s author Melvin Burgess and his quest to tweet stories at 140 characters in length http://www.melvinburgess.net/home/blog5.php , I will review in the same manner. It will be a challenge but fun to say if I can use my English language to the best of its ability. I’ve just read through Melvin Burgess’s site/blog/tweets. Fascinating man, I love his frankness and often welcomed absurdity. Would be wonderful to interview him as I get the feeling he wouldn’t lie and would tell you where to go if you overstepped the mark. Be sure to check out his books for older children, teenage years.

And finally I will present a weekly list of ‘5 Minutes Peace’s 5 favourite…’ this will change each week, it could be 5 favourite fairytales, picture books, illustrators. I think it will be fun and get a bit of regularity going, something that people can check back for on a weekly or daily basis. Let me know your thoughts.

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 (via Liberty London Girl)

This photo was taken by Liberty London Girl, from the blog with the same name. She posted it on twitter this morning and I thought it quite fitting whilst I make a few home improvements. Hope she doesn’t mind my using it. Great sight to visit if you haven’t already. http://www.libertylondongirl.com/

Just a quick note to say i’m changing my blog around a bit at the moment so it’s not looking its best. Consider it a bad hair day and all shall be lovely jubly tomorrow (I hope).

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I have been rather overwhelmed with working at the bookstore and looking for a graduate job recently and so I have not had time to make any decent posts.

Next week, I have a bit more time on my hands and so here is the plan

1. Review the latest picture books by new authors.

2. Write some early reviews for upcoming Christmas picture books (one can never prepare enough for Christmas)

3. Post my reviews for the Waterstone’s Super-tiers Christmas lists which I am submitting to head office. This is in the hope that they will be rolled out across all the stores in December.

On a quick goodnight note, all signs have been pointing for me to re-read ‘The Magic Faraway Tree’…I keep finding links for pictures of Helena Bonham-Carter as Enid Blyton, the books has had an increase in sales recently and this is one of the super-tier books for our Christmas best-seller list. What a wonderful, dreamy, crazy book. Just what I need to forget that the recession and lack of job is not everything. Happy reading, whatever the book may be!

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First and foremost, welcome to my first blog. I am truly excited about it.

Blogs, I have come to discover are a most convenient and fun way of writing.  Whilst the art of blogging is a relatively new form of the ever-evolving forms of literature there is something to be said about the timeless ability of it all.

What I want to achieve from my blog is not only a form of writing experience for myself, but also to any readers out there who have an interest in children’s literature; I want them to feel that they can visit my blog and find a genuine review of a book whether this is for their own pleasure or to pass on to their child.

These reviews will vary and ultimately, I want my blog set up so that it is organised by genre making it accessible to those who visit. I certainly do not want to give those who visit a false sense of excitement when they see the name of my blog, hoping to enter a serene virtual space only to find a jumble of words lost in a genre-palooza.

So, why children’s literature? And why now? Well i have recently graduated from a B.A Honours degree in English and might I say what a pleasure it was to study. Without realising, I honed my writing skills, I became a keen debater and I fell in love with the written word. During this time I also got a part-time job in Waterstones which I just adore. It is possibly the best retail job, simply because it does not put upon you the strains and stresses of any other retail job I have had the displeasure of working. Certainly there are expectations and commitments, but my job focuses on one thing and one thing only…the books.

And of course, we each have our own favourite parts of the shop. For a long time the Cookery section and the Children’s section were locked in a tense battle over who would become my favourite place and in the end, the Children’s section won out simply because it keeps that magical feeling throughout the year. The Cookery section for me seems to sparkle most only during the Christmas season.

I just love Children’s literature and the giant ‘Where’s Wally?’ figure placed high above the picture books. What’s wonderful about children’s literature, I believe, is the disctinctions of the old and the new but both flourish so well together. These days we have Beast Quest in amongst Mrs Pepperpot and Twilight leaning against  Stig of the Dump but what becomes apparent when helping customers find their perfect book is that there is room for both the old traditions and the creating of the new.

Certainly my love for the children’s book would not be so strong would it not be for John Cook who is the children’s specialist in my particular branch. His knowledge is astounding and he is a simple, no nonsense, genuine man, who nonetheless can inspire greatness in each and every person and who can read people so well, it is spooky. He himself is a budding author who can be very proud of what he has written and I wish many great things upon him. Perhaps one day when he is far too rich and important to be seen amongst the lowly bookseller, I can beg him to come and do a book signing in my own bookstore, aptly named ‘FiveMinutesPeace’ in homage to Jill Murphy’s wonderfully simple yet telling tales of the Large family. Of course this is just the dream, but it is my dream all the same.

So back to the blog in hand. I will aim for a few updates a week and whilst I am always one for nostalgia, I will also be writing reviews for new picture books and reprints so that the children of today, in years to come can pass on to their own kids, their copies of the books they once loved. Because really, that’s what it’s all about. For now, i’m not interested in writing about politics, or world affairs or the environment. It is just not my calling. My calling, I know in my heart of hearts is books and it is just the most wonderful, exhilarating and enlightening feeling to go into a children’s bookstore and find a book you had completely forgotten and remember it, simply for it’s front cover or illustration or particular moment in the story. A book can embue such vital, precious memories and I am certainly evangelical about my passion for each and every children’s book out there.

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