Tagged: children

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, collected by Alvin Schwartz, drawings by Stephen Gammell, 3/5

It is clear that children are the target audience for this book, but the simple layout and child-friendly writing style provide a disturbing contrast with the extremely dark and gross stories it contains. I wouldn’t have wanted to read such terrifying things as a kid and certainly wouldn’t want my own children to be exposed to these ideas at a young age. As an adult, I found the stories to be entertaining, if a bit simplistically retold, and the artwork in particular is outstanding.

Why I read it: a thrift store find. I’ve always been interested in fairy tales and myths, so paranormal stories are not that much of a stretch.

The Wombles

wombles beresford ernest benn 1975The Wombles by Elisabeth Beresford, 4/5

I may be twenty years older than the target audience, but I still enjoyed reading this charming British children’s classic.

[Why I read it: I recognized the title while browsing in the thrift store.]

Entropy Academy

Entropy Academy Alison BernhoftEntropy Academy: How to Succeed at Homeschooling Even if You Don’t Homeschool by Alison Bernhoft, ♥♥♥♥♥/5

My friend wrote a book!  It is, unsurprisingly, just like her: intelligent, passionate, inspiring and humorous.  Despite possessing an impressive formal education that includes degrees from England’s Royal College of Music, Oxford, and UCLA, Alison wasn’t afraid to embrace unconventionality when it came to successfully homeschooling her large family.  Her decision to work with life’s chaos instead of fighting it resulted in a homeschooling style that is joyful and realistic, integrating learning naturally into every aspect of life.  Hilarious anecdotes and creative educational ideas are woven into a family narrative that provides an antidote to the sort of dry, rigidly-structured homeschooling ideologies that crush children’s natural love of learning and burden their parents with unrealistic demands on time and patience.  This is the sort of book that is written out of love, and, I have no doubt, in response to demand from people who have seen the fruits of Alison’s labour in her loving family and successful children, now grown up.

You can find more information on her website or buy a copy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, and Books-A-Million.

[Why I read it: No one who has read Alison’s hugely-entertaining Christmas letters, met her talented family or talked to her in person could resist the opportunity of reading an entire book written by her!  Also, I was honored to edit the book, design the cover, convert it to e-book formats, put it up for sale on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Google Play, create the website and Facebook page, as well as whatever other things needed doing.  It was a challenging project that took over a year to complete, but provided great fun and satisfaction, as well as invaluable learning experience.]

Update: Since writing this review, Entropy Academy has been further refreshed and published by Propriometrics Press.