This spring I got one of the best surprises. My brother, my older very annoying but endearing brother, was expecting a baby! I was going to be an Aunt to an adorable little niece or nephew. And boy was I excited (not as much as my mother was though)! A while ago they had their reveal party to which I found out I was getting a little niece. And as the baby shower approaches this got me thinking. . . Much like my childhood I wanted her to grow up around books that she could love just like Stephen and I did. So down below I have compiled a list of my five most favorite children’s books.

1. GUESS HOW MUCH I LOVE YOU by Sam McBratney

The Little Nutbrown Hare tries to show how much he loves his daddy by spreading his arms out wide and hopping as high as he can. But the Big Nutbrown Hare who can spread his arms wider and hop higher loves the Little Nutbrown Hare just as much if not more.

This one is at the top of my list mainly because of sentimental value. Everytime I read this short little book I’m reminded of my mother. She and I are fairly close and she would always tuck me into bed at night. Even now I distinctly remember those nights.

2. VELVETEEN RABBIT by Margery Williams

A stuffed rabbit sewn from velveteen is given to a little boy as a Christmas present. The boy instead plays with his other toys who snub the considerably old-fashioned velveteen rabbit. One night to help him sleep the boy’s nana gives him the rabbit in place of a lost toy and soon after the rabbit becomes the boy’s favorite toy. Time passes and the rabbit becomes shabbier he meets some real rabbits learning that he is not real. The boy comes down with scarlatina (scarlet fever) and his taken to the seaside and his room disinfected leaving the velveteen rabbit out in the trash. He cries as a tear drop lands on the ground a flower appears along with a magic fairy. She claims that she can make him real and takes the rabbit into the forest to be with the others. The next spring the rabbit returns to look at the boy, and the boy sees a resemblance to his old velveteen rabbit.

This makes it at number two because of the lesson it teaches. This story teaches life lessons like loving who you are and loving unconditionally. In the end I believe that is what makes this story so special.

3. THE GIVING TREE by Shel Silverstein

There was once a tree who loved a boy. Every day the boy would come to the tree and eat her apples, swing from her branches, or slide down her trunk. As the boy grew older he wanted more and more from the tree. And the tree, well she gave and she gave until there was no more.

At number three is the Giving Tree (sorry I just had to rhyme). Again this childrens book teaches some very important life lessons about giving but also receiving in turn.

4. GOODNIGHT MOON by Wise Brown

In a great green room where a little bunny is tucked away in bed he says “Goodnight room, goodnight moon.” He says this to all the things in his softly lit room; to the picture of three little bears sitting in chairs, and to the clocks, the socks, and the mitten and kittens. He says this one by one until the little bunny says goodnight.

I just feel like this book is a wonderful bedtime story to read. And while it’s repetitive it’s also short and sweet.

5. OH, THE PLACES YOU’LL GO by Dr. Seuss

This is an ode to life where Dr. Seuss addresses graduates of all ages and gives them the get-up-and-go to move mountains.

Even as I get older I will always have a love for Dr. Seuss which why I had to put this book on the list. Part of loving this more came more from when I was older. When I graduated High School last year my parents used this as my guest book to my graduation party. It’s a neat little momento for me and it was truly awesome to see how some of the guest would use the story and images to write their messages. You could really tell who put some thought into it.

 

See ya in the A.M.

-Zippy-

“I have a lot of respect and love for children’s books.”

-Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

Welcoming Wattpad

As I was starting the early stages for this post I knew that there were many things that I felt I just had to share with you guys. Mainly why Wattpad is so meaningful to some people but also some personal thoughts I had on writing. So as you read know that I have tried to the very best of my ability to explain my exact thinking.

Wattpad is a wonderful website for readers and writers alike. It launched about 11 years ago and creates a storytelling community where users can publish their novels, poems, fanfiction, or short-stories. On the other hand users also have the access to other amazing works at their fingertips. The Wattpad community has all levels of writers and gives every person an equal chance to write popular works. Works are published under genre categories allowing you to easily find something that you will love. Much like Goodreads, one will get recommendations based on works you have read. Many like myself will fall in love with certain authors whom you can follow and read every book they write as the chapters come (there is only a few that I do this for). The best thing about Wattpad is the Watty Awards every year. The awards vote for the best work in many different categories and those who win get more reading views and votes on their books. For me personally seeing a piece that has won the Watty Awards is like the best review a book can have. If a public population has voted on and loved that work so much then it’s gotta be good.

Like many good books, Wattpad came to me through word of mouth. I’d had a high school friend who dabbled in writing and she would post her works to Wattpad. That very day I signed up and although I have published barely anything I have been devouring books like no tomorrow.

My favorite thing about Wattpad is not just the novels themselves but the people behind them. Wattpad has a great sense of community and I feel as if writers can feel that. More than not people are giving strong encouragement and critical construction instead of beating an author down. And this is important because it’s hard to write anything that you feel so passionate about and put it in the public eye. And many of these authors use Wattpad because they have a dream of one day the possibility of getting published but in the meantime they still want to write and share.

And trust me things don’t always stay on Wattpad. Just recently a Wattpad author under the name HonorInTheRain published her work In 27 Days with Blink YA! She had started writing the novel when she was sixteen and it became a Watty Award winner in 2012. And the reason this work is slightly more dear to my heart than others is because this was the very first book that I ever read on Wattpad. It was the novel that kinda showed that this site was for real and these people had some serious talent. Y’all should go buy and read her book! I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

See ya in the A.M.

-Zippy-

“Chase after the dream don’t chase after the money.”

-Old Dominion

Books to Film – Between Shades of Grey

Later this year Between Shades of Grey by Ruta Sepetys will be released on the big screen. Ever since the announcement I have been waiting patiently (more like dying) to see any trailers. And although the film is based on Sepetys novel it will be called Ashes in the Snow instead of the original title.

The first time I read the novel I was only a Freshman in High School as a required by the curriculum. At the time Shades of Grey was making it’s rise on the charts so my teacher was very clear with the title and author as to lessen confusion between the two.

Between Shades of Grey shadows, the life of a fifthteen-year-old Lituanian girl, Lina, in 1941 right in the middle of World War II. One-night Soviet officers barge into Lina’s home separating her from her father before shoving Lina, her brother, and her mother onto a train car heading north. Their journey takes them to Siberia where they are forced to work under Stalin’s orders. Lina finds solace in her art and documents events of her life by drawing. She hopes that her small messages will eventually make their way to her father so that he knows they are still alive.

Although the release date has not yet been announced you can find some more information on movie websites like IMDb. I tend to check there every so often. It shows the full cast of characters and has some pictures.

See ya in the A.M.

-Zippy-

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“I mean if they’re running and they don’t look where they’re going I have to come out from somewhere and catch them. That’s all I do all day. I’d just be the catcher in the rye and all. I know it’s crazy, but that’s the only thing I’d really like to be.”

-J.D. Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye

Featured Photo Credit: Photo by Anastasia Polischuk on Unsplash

The Book That Made Me a Reader

When I was younger I wanted to be exactly like my older brother, Stephen, so when he grew to love reading so did I. At the time I considered myself an advanced reader but I hadn’t found MY book. You know the book that makes you fall in love with reading.

I’ve always believed that those who don’t like to read just haven’t found THEIR book yet.

My Grandpa Sky was always real big on encouraging my new found love of reading by buying books he thought I would like almost every Christmas. If he never found any a handy Barnes and Noble gift card would always take its place. At Christmas about 12 years ago he bought me the first book of Sisters Grimm by Michael Buckley.

The story surrounds two sisters, Sabrina and Daphne Grimm, who traveled through many foster homes after their parents mysteriously disappear leaving behind a single red handprint. In the end they move in with their supposedly long dead grandmother in a town called Ferryport Landing. Sabrina and Daphne learn about the family business as detectives, Fairy-Tale detectives that is. Ferryport is filled with fairy tale characters who are referred to as Everafters. And as long as a Grimm lives within the magical barriers surrounding the town all the Everafters inside cannot leave.

This series turned out to be MY book or books I guess because after that there wasn’t a novel I couldn’t keep my hands off of. During that summer I spent most if not all of my time at the library gathering books and making friends with the librarians (many of whom I still converse with today). It was also during this time that I read the Harry Potter series for the very first time by myself. Ever since then it has been an integral aspect of my life and a series that I will always always always go back to.

I’d love to know what YOUR book was?

P.S. I’m currently re-reading this series just for the fun of it!

See ya in the A.M.

-Zippy-

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“One should never underestimate the power of books.”

-Paul Auster, The Brooklynn Follies

Featured Photo Credit: Photo by Taylor Bryant on Unsplash