Think tropical … island nations, high and low islands. Feel the sun’s warmth, the stir of a gentle breeze clattering palm fronds high overhead. Escape winter, cold, snow, white, ice. How? In a book. Open one of the many books published by Bess Press, one of the first independent publishers located in Honolulu. Their books cover history and culture, war and peace in the Pacific, the many cultures of Polynesia, Micronesia (meaning small islands, there are over 10,000 islands in Micronesia) and Melanesia (the dark islands).
Imagine a cluster of smiling keikis, (kids), sitting around a calabash filled with mouth-watering Hawaii local-style fried rice. Sharing delicious food from a calabash serving bowl is a Hawaii tradition. As it does everywhere around the world, not just in Hawaii, eating meals together creates common bonds for everyone, children and adults alike, solidifying the feeling of ohana, or family.… more
Today we welcome author Polly Carlson-Voiles to Bookology. Her book, Summer of the Wolves, has been a favorite adventure story with middle grade readers, a recent contender for the Maud Hart Lovelace Award. Which celebrity, living or not, do you wish would invite you to a coffee shop? Jane Goodall. Which book do you find yourself recommending passionately?… more
If I hadn’t made the trip myself, I don’t think I would believe how quickly you can travel from the curious world of the Las Vegas Strip to what seems to be its diametrical opposite: the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area. Red Rock is composed of desert and rock formations, the kind of place that inspired one website to urge visitors to leave news of their intended destination with a “responsible party” before they journey into its mysteries.… more
My one visit to Hawaii might best be defined by an afternoon quest. I was there to say goodbye to my cousin, who was coming to the end of her battle with cancer. I discovered she had developed a singular ambition: to find a pair of size 11 ruby slippers. She took great pleasure in the thought of giving them as a gag gift to a male colleague originally from Kansas.… more
The books that most delight middle school and junior high readers often straddle a “Middle Kingdom” ranging from upper middle grade to YA. Bookology columnist Lisa Bullard regularly visits the Middle Kingdom by viewing it through the eyes of a teacher or librarian. Bookology is delighted to celebrate the work of these educators who have built vital book encampments in the transitional territory of early adolescence.… more