Monday, March 09, 2009

Weekend Reading

Sherri L. Smith's Flygirl covers an intriguing historical moment-- World War II from the point of view of an African American pilot in the Women Airforce Service Pilots organization. Ida Mae has always loved to fly, but hasn't had the opporunity since her father was killed in a farming accident. When her brother goes off to war and she finds out about the WASP, she passes as a white woman in order to get accepted. Rich in details, this covers her life before the military (cleaning houses, struggling to get by) as well as the difficulties she has having to remember that everyone thinks she is white. While this is not the sort of World War II book that will be hugely popular with the boys who tend to read about this era, it is still a worthy addition to a collection and adds depth to our understanding of the many different people who served our country in different capacities.

On the other hand, Chris Bradford's Young Samurai: The Way of the Warrior will make the boys happy. Described on the flash Disney/Hyperion web site as "the all-punching, all-kicking, action-adventure series for boys and girls", it is filled with lots of action. In 1611, Jack's father is killed when his ship is attacked by ninja pirates. Saved by the samurai Masamota, Jack is adopted because Masamota's son was killed. This does not make Yamota, his other son, happy, and he proceeds to make Jack's training at Masamota's school difficult. Since Jack is also being pursued by Dragon Eye, the evil ninja who attacked the ship, there are lots of battles and descriptions of samurai fighting techniques. Leaving room for a sequel, this will make the fans of Whitsel's Blue Fingers or the Hooblers' Ghost in the Tokaido Inn series very happy.

Need something fluffy and completely enjoyable? Pick up Rachel Hawthorne's Suite Dreams. Why did a hot Aussie guy never want to crash on my couch when I was in college? After Alyssa's boyfriend (who just can't commit and isn't making her all that happy) takes off for Australia during winter break, she finds out that he is part of a couch swap-- only the couch in his room is taken. Jude ends up staying with her, and after spending a lot of time together, they realize that they are very attracted to each other. I especially liked the realization, after Alyssa has to finally buckle down to writing a paper, that the two are usually both very scholarly, and Jude helps get research material for her. Many thanks to Sarah, who loaned this one to me.

Last and certainly least (we know my opinion of Twilight-- nothing to do with the writing or subject matter, it's just that I've folded too many socks to think that eternity is romantic), be aware that Mark Cotta Vaz has Twilight: the Complete Illustrated Movie Companion out, and most fans will want to look at it. It's filled with a lot more technical details about the clothing and makeup than I cared about, but 9th grader spent some time looking at it. Only available in paperback.


  1. Ah! Not just one, but two, new Samurai titles to investigate. Domo arigato gozaimashita!

  2. I can't believe I haven't read Twilight yet, but I haven't! My TBR stack is huge and the book isn't for review, so I guess it's gonna wait a bit longer...(: The movie was great, though!