Thanks to my 7 year-old, Nate Dog, he picked Jess Istvan’s name out of the baseball hat!!!! CONGRATS JESS!
Monthly Archives: May 2013
“She was wise enough to know that, despite what most people think, the best things in life are often quite ordinary.” I adore this quote and feel the need to embrace it more often. I think we tend to feel that everything has to be out-of-this world in order to mean anything. When, in fact, simple is truly beautiful. This is a book for children…middle-age readers, but as an adult I found it rather entertaining. It is called Remarkable and it is by author Lizzie K. Foley.
Remarkable is a town where everything and everyone is remarkable…except Jane Doe. Jane is surrounded by remarkable people: her mother is a remarkable architect, her father…a remarkable novelist, a brother who is a remarkable artist and a younger sister who has remarkable math skills. Her grandmama is in fact the mayor of Remarkable and may be the most remarkable of all. But not Jane….she takes after her grandfather…John Doe. Both are rather ordinary and overlooked. In fact, Jane is so ordinary that she is the only kid in the whole town to go to the public school while everyone else attends the School for the Remarkably Gifted.
Now insert a sea monster, some pirates and some devilish twins….and a story begins to develop and we discover that being “ordinary” is so much better than being remarkable in just one thing.
I loved the characters and the word play….so much fun to read!
This book was recommended by my friend Kristin, and she said she just loved the story. So I had to get a copy ASAP, and I could not wait to get a hard copy, so I downloaded it to my iPad (I am getting more comfortable reading eBooks, but I am still prefer the real pages in my hand. It is nice to be able to get a book within 30 seconds and start it immediately. But then I find I have a need to own the actual copy, so this is one on my list to buy). The book is called The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh, and it is wonderful.
The story follows the life of Victoria, a young woman abandoned as a baby and has lived her childhood in the care of the foster system. The book is divided into 4 parts and flashes between her childhood and the present. Victoria had a foster-mother, Elizabeth, who she came to love dearly. This woman taught her not only the love of flowers, but their meanings and how to communicate through the flowers. [Sidenote: here is a little known nerdy fact about myself: before I had children, Dave & I spent a lot of time camping and hiking. During these trips, I would carry a camera to take pictures of flowers. I would develop them and then research them in my little Peterson’s Field Guide of Wildflowers. I created an album of them. I am sure if I searched hard enough, I may be able to locate this album. So when I began to read this story, I felt a connection to Victoria who researched flowers and scoured libraries for books on flowers and their meanings. I actually keep lavender in my bedroom because it is supposed to ward off anger, and then I read this book to discover lavender means mistrust…hmmmm…more research to follow.]
A horrible event happens that causes Victoria to be removed from Elizabeth’s home and live the rest of her childhood alone and bitter in a group home. She is released at 18 and her life begins. The story that follows is of struggle, hope, love, and the strength of the human spirit. A quick read and one you won’t soon forget.