Sunday, December 7, 2014

Holiday History: Memorial Day

Originally called Decoration Day, this holiday is a day of remembrance for those who have died in service of the United States of America. Memorial Day was first observed after the Civil War as a desire to honor the dead. Originally proclaimed on 5 May 1868 by General John Logan (national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic in the Civil War) because the date wasn't the anniversary of any particular battle. In his General Order No. 11 he proclaimed:
“The 30th of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers, or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie
in almost every city, village and hamlet churchyard in the land,” (original text link here)

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Mamma's Book Review: Sense and Sensibility

Sense and Sensibility

Author: Jane Austen
Recommended Reader Age: Adult
Of course the original will always be my favorite!

"Sense and Sensibility is the story of two sisters; pragmatic Elinor and passionate, willful Marianne. When their father, Henry Dashwood, dies, by law his estate must pass to the eldest son from his first marriage. Suddenly homeless and impoverished his current wife and daughters find themselves living in a simple country cottage. The two sisters are soon accepted into their new society. Marianne soon becomes swept up in a passionate love affair with the dashing Willoughby, while Elinor struggles to keep a tight reign on the family purse strings and to keep her feelings for Edward Ferrars, whom she left behind, hidden from her family. Despite their different personalities, they both experience great sorrows in their affairs, but they learn to mix sense with sensibility in a society that is obsessed with both financial and social status."
~from the back cover of Sense and Sensibility

Friday, December 5, 2014

Mamma's Book Review: Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters

Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters

Author: Ben H. Winters, original novel by Jane Austen
Recommended Reader Age: Young Adult to Adult
A fan-fiction novel of Sense and Sensibility set to the tune of Sea Monsters!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Mamma's Book Review: His Dark Materials, Phillip Pullman

Book 2 of the His Dark Materials trilogy, the Subtle Knife 

by Phillip Pullman

"Having slipped through a newly formed astral portal, the intrepid Lyra finds herself in the beautiful, haunted world of Cittagazze--a city where soul-eating Specters walk the streets and the wingbeats of distant angels sound against the sky. But she is not without allies. For young Will Parry, in search of his father, has stumbled into this strange new realm via a magic gateway.
Together the enlightened pair forge ahead on a perilous journey between worlds teeming with witches, angels and sorcery--and uncover a deadly secret: an object of extraordinary and devastating power. But with every step, they move closer to an even greater threat--and the shattering truth of their own destiny..."
~from the back cover of The Subtle Knife

Friday, November 28, 2014

Mamma's Book Review: His Dark Materials, Phillip Pullman

Book 1 of the His Dark Materials trilogy, The Golden Compass 

by Phillip Pullman

"Lyra Belaqua is content to run wild among the scholars of Jordan College with her daemon familiar always by her side. But the arrival of her fearsome uncle, Lord Asriel, draws her to the heart of a deadly struggle--a struggle born of Gobblers and stolen children, witch clans and armored bears. And as she hurtles toward dangers in the cold far North, young Lyra never suspects the shocking truth: she alone is destined to win, or to lose, this more-than-mortal battle."
~from the back cover of The Golden Compass