Today is Drop Everything and Read Day (D.E.A.R.)! Why was April 12th chosen for this honor? It is because Beverly Cleary, possibly the most beloved writer in America, was born on April 12, 1916. Beverly Cleary turns 99 years old today!
Cleary first wrote about D.E.A.R. in Ramona Quimby, Age 8. She was inspired by some schools celebrating reading during the month of April. Since she wrote about it in that book, it has become a nationwide movement to celebrate it on her birthday.
Here she is in 2006 when she was a mere 90 years old!
Even though today is the official day, the celebration is meant to last for the entire month of April.
Now we can have an excuse to not clean the house, not go to the mall, and not watch television.
Title: My Sparkling Misfortune Author: Laura Lond Genre: Children’s Literature Format: E-book Year Published: 2010 Source: I was sent a copy of this book for review.
My Sparkling Misfortune is a children’s book by Laura Lond. The book is set in medieval times, in the days of knights, sword-fights, and vast kingdoms. What makes this book so unusual is that it is told from the point-of-view of the villain. What is even more surprising is that it is told with a great sense of humor.The protagonist-villain is Lord Arkus of Blackriver Castle. As Arkus says:
I am the villain. What? You wanted a noble hero? Well, tough. You’ve got the wrong book then. But let me tell you something before you put it down: there are no heroes without us villains.
As the book progresses, however, the line becomes blurred between the villains and the heroes. The apparent hero really becomes the villain, and Arkus . . . well, it turns out that Arkus has some surprises ahead. Arkus’ nemesis throughout much of the book is a monster with revenge on his mind. Arkus flees from the monster, only to find out that nothing quite turns out the way he planned. One of the reasons the book is so enjoyable is because you never quite know where the plot is going. You are continually surprised.
The title of the book is a pun, because Arkus, the villain, ends up with a sparkling for a servant. A sparkling is a “goody-goody” spirit that helps heroes. Arkus isn’t a hero . . . or is he?
This book is a terrific book to read for anyone of any age. Children will love it, and their parents will love it too, because the author is obviously trying to surprise us at every turn and not write the standard prince-and-princess fairy tale.