Why "The Search for..."?

I got my title from the book The Search for Delicious by Natalie Babbitt. where there is a wonderful quote--

" 'Of course it's silly,' said the Prime Minister impatiently. 'But a lot of serious things start silly.'"

This particular quote stuck out for me as I was reading The Search for Delicious to my kids this past fall, and I put it aside knowing that I would use it somewhere, sometime. It seems like the perfect subtitle to this blog as many of my musing probably are silly, but may turn serious at any moment!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Every Bone Tells a Story by Jill Rubalcaba and Peter Robertshaw

I found this book while browsing the 2011 YALSA shortlist for their excellence in nonfiction award.  It's a book that will intrigue a very niche "market" among young adults fascinating by evolution, paleontology, archaeology and ancient man.  It's also one of those young adult nonfiction books that, as an adult, I enjoy reading because I don't always have the time to invest in the longer, more in-depth books on this type of subject written for adults.  Every Bone...  tells the story of four hominin discoveries that have stirred controversy in the scientific community (Turkana Boy, Lapedo Child,
Kenniwick Man and Iceman) from their discovery through the scientific examination of the evidence to the deductions drawn from the fossils.

This would be a good book to book talk as students debate the Creationism vs. Evolutionary Theory debates.

False Princess by Eilis O'Neal

Another Rhode Island Teen Book Award nominee, The False Princess  by Eilis O'Neal is genre cross between fantasy, mystery, and chick lit.   This was one of those books that I thought I had figured out by about page 50.  You know, the oh-so predictable books that follow a logical, but predictable path to a fairly ho-hum ending.  I was wrong.  About seventy pages into the book, the storyline takes a sharp left turn down a road that I wasn't really expecting, and I was delightfully surprised by the end!

The protagonist of the novel starts the story as Nalia, princess of Thorvaldor, privileged, scholarly and awkward.  Within pages of the beginning, Nalia is summoned to the throne room where the king and queen announce that she is not Nalia at all, but a decoy princess set up by the royals to protect the real princess from a prophecy about death.  Suddenly, Nalia is Sinda, niece of a clothe dyer, and is sent away with a few simple items to live a life entirely foreign to her up-bringing.

At this point, I thought this novel was going to be about self-discovery and would chronicle Sinda's path to acceptance of her new life.  As I mentioned, I was wrong. While this novel is about self-discovery, Sinda only finds her real self after unraveling a royal intrigue that dates back to before her birth.  Magic plays a part Sinda's story as well.  A fun read, and a little better than the average book that I would label as "chick lit." Suitable for grades 6 and up!