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DBR Books

The Books Magazine 2

March | April 2014


Our

new readers‟ forum, The Reader’s Journal, is off with a great start. The Power to Transform - Passion, Power, and Purpose in Daily Life by Chris Majer, a 90 day read with inspiring exercises was our first choice for The Reader’s Journal. We hope that you were able to follow along with us and be inspired! The purpose of The Reader‟s Journal is to help motivate you, through great reads, to aspire to greater heights. Also, we would like to give you a more enriching reading experience! This is our gift to you - to introduce books and authors that will motivate you to take charge of your life and to inspire the greatness in you! This issue‟s Reader‟s Journal book is Lance’s Travels - UK, an interesting mix of blog-like personal travel experience interspersed with instances of historical drama! We hope this book inspires you to travel! Happy Reading! More of our reader’s journal entries, reviews, plus author interviews, can be found on our Blog and on Examiner! Do you have a recently published children’s or YA fiction book you would like us to review or promote? Then, write to dbrdesigns1@gmail.com

Read our weekly newspaper, DBR Book News Weekly! DBR Books would like to hear all about your reading experience; share with us on Examiner, our Blog, and on Twitter! 3


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DBR Books has now joined the TripleClicks group of stores! TripleClicks is an online international mall of stores, which is accessible to internet users globally. On TripleClicks, you can: 

Visit DBR Book Store and purchase books and other items and receive from us a $12 gift card for your next purchase on any store on Tripleclicks.com Shop for anything and almost everything on TripleClicks.com Or, open up YOUR OWN* store! You can sell (global or domestic) your own books or other items by becoming an ECA [e-commerce associate]

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Lance’s Travels - UK by Lance Leuven Book Description: With a few beers coursing through his veins and an upcoming 30th birthday on his mind Lance felt the need for one last bout of foolishness, so the next day he quit his job and gave notice on his flat. His plan was simple: spend the summer travelling the length and breadth of the UK in a bid to get to know his homeland. Four weeks later he departed, armed with little more than an antiquated Ford Mondeo, an unreliable Sat Nav and a genuine 1980s caravan. In an attempt to absorb as much as possible from the journey, he compiled an extensive and eclectic list of things to see and do. Travelling the nation ticking tasks from his list, took him from the childhood home of Paul McCartney to the summit of Ben Nevis via standing shoeless on the shores of Loch Ness. He uncovered fascinating tales about the nation‟s natural beauty, world-changing history, explosive battles and revolutionary innovation – whilst taking time to sample the nation‟s best fish and chips and sup a pint at the oldest pub. Follow the adventure as Lance seeks directions to a tree from royalty, helplessly watches as his transport slowly disintegrates and is warmly welcomed to Scotland with handcuffs and a police dog. Author’s Bio: “Lance was aged only four when he was first bitten by the travelling bug. His older brother snuck him out the house late one night with a promise to explore 'the woods'. Sadly, they were discovered by a dog-walking neighbour before reaching their destination and returned to their angry parents. But it was too late; his sense of adventure had been ignited. Despite having visited many exotic places since, Lance has never forgotten the tempting allure of what can be found 'just down the road'. On little more than a whim he spent the summer of 2010 travelling the length and breadth of the UK. Captivated by the wonders the UK has to offer, he has continued to mix his traveling abroad with trips closer to home. Lance‟s first release was a short e-book detailing a week spent exploring Cornwall, his favourite part of the UK. His second book, Lance’s Travels - UK, details a summer spent exploring the whole of the UK.” 6


Our

2nd book for the Reading Journal is Lanceâ€&#x;s Travels - UK by Lance Leuven. DBR Books reviewed Lance's previous book Lance's Travels Does Cornwall, and we found the book to be an interesting mix of history and travel guide commentary, thanks to Leuven's witty storytelling abilities. In his second book, Lanceâ€&#x;s Travels - UK, the author takes the reader on an adventurous journey, mixing in his own travel experience and historical data done through detailed retelling, with lots of imagination and a bit of speculation. The way in which historical facts are delivered in the book, produce for the reader special "what ifs" moments, which caused us to pause and ponder on a bit of history and speculate "what if history had gone an entirely different way, what then?"Leuven gets the reader involved and intrigued, and one can't help but be absorbed in the natural way in which Leuven retells history. This is a good thing because readers will want to visit; to be in the place where such grand history took place, and experience (even if it's just in imagination) that piece of history that Leuven has recreated for us! Leuven's guide books are not the typical, but they are a more detailed, personal journal-like type of guide which take into account the writer's experience, and give a little bit of theatrical drama (both his and history's) along with it! For example, going into the history of the Crown and the fights and battles that ensued to gain control of the Crown and all the provinces and territories that comes with it, is pretty detailed oriented but the tasteful way in which Leuven embarked on this endeavor makes it an adventure for him as well as the reader. Therefore, you could tell that the author totally enjoyed his visit to the town of Battle, (in which the Battle of Hastings took place); his very descriptive, engrossing tale gave it all away! If you love history and travel, then you'll love reading Lanceâ€&#x;s Travels - UK by Lance Leuven. We're just about to delve into chapter 3 and we look forward to hearing from you as you travel the UK with us through the eyes and imagination of Lance Leuven, our author and travel guide! (Review written by DBR Books Blog)

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What We’re Reading Now! This book is our first read for 2014 Reading Challenge, of which readers are challenged to read outside their usual genre! We hope that you will be able to reach your goal for the year! Thanks for participating!

Gilt by Katherine Longshore Book Description: In the court of King Henry VIII, nothing is free — and love comes at the highest price of all. When Kitty Tylney's best friend, Catherine Howard, worms her way into King Henry VIII's heart and brings Kitty to court, she's thrust into a world filled with fabulous gowns, sparkling jewels, and elegant parties. No longer stuck in Cat's shadow, Kitty's now caught between two men—the object of her affection and the object of her desire. But court is also full of secrets, lies, and sordid affairs, and as Kitty witnesses Cat's meteoric rise and fall as queen, she must figure out how to keep being a good friend when the price of telling the truth could literally be her head. Kirkus Reviews: The short life and times of Henry VIII's fifth wife, as seen through the eyes of her friend. Cat Howard styles herself Queen of Misrule in the Duchess of Norfolk's maidens' chamber (a misnomer if ever there was one). When Cat is selected to be one of Anne of Cleves' ladies-in-waiting, she soon catches the king's eye, and the rest, as they say, is history. Cat rescues mousy friend Kitty to attend her in her chambers, giving Kitty and readers an intimate view of that history. Hewing closely to what little is known about Howard's circumstances, Longshore allows Kitty to thread the maze of alliances that was the court of Henry VIII. She concentrates on domestic details while brushing with broad strokes the politics of the men's world. Kitty's narration is formal, but her language is modern, a balance between authenticity and readability that is mostly successful. Her sense of her own powerlessness, and by extension all women's, even the queen's, comes through clearly. The mounting terror as lusty, luxury-loving Cat's fortunes fall is palpable, as is the sense that the queen is no innocent. The author's adherence to historical detail is admirable, clashing with both title and cover, which imply far more froth than readers will find between the covers. A substantive, sobering historical read, with just a few heaving bodices.

Product Details

Historical fiction: 13 & up ISBN-13: 9780142426197 Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group Publication date: May 7, 2013 Series: Royal Circle Series

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DBR’s WISHLIST books for March | April 2014!

The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein

The Pigeon Needs a Bath by Mo Willems

How to Babysit a Grandma by Jean Reagan

Boy, Snow, Bird

Big Nate In The Zone by Lincoln Peirce

Dork Diaries 7 by Rachel Renee Russell

by Helen Oyeyemi

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S

ometimes when we are reading, we'll come across a phrase or an entire paragraph that tends to leave us pondering and wondering just what the writer meant by it. The phrase or the sentence is profound and you wish to capture it, so you might write it in a notebook or save it in your phone or any other electronic device as a screen saver on a slow crawl. Something about the phrase struck a chord with you, and you can‟t get it out of your head. Well, you're not alone. We too are on the lookout for fascinating phrases and sentences that seem to lift off the pages of a book and take on a life of their own. We call these phrases, the prolific phrase, because they produce much to the imagination. From them, thought and reasoning flow and the words sprout root and yield much fruit. This month's prolific phrase is: " ustling in her stiff new overall—Mr. Mulgrove’s adR ministrative eye had rested in disappointment on the extra foot of Anna’s grey corduroy skirt that hung below it—Anna followed Tim out of the warehouse and down a grim cold staircase on to the shop floor. It was like coming on stage in a theatre, out of the dark wings into warmth and light.” The Rector’s Wife by Joanna Trollope. The paragraph caught our attention and we paused to wonder if the author had intended to sum up the entire essence of the book in this one paragraph. Anna, the main character, felt stifled in her life and was surrounded by the cold, unfeeling parish (in which her husband served) who had placed her in a stereotypical box as nothing more than just the Rector‟s wife. The paragraph sites the beginning of the first day on her job; a job she had taken on because of circumstances, but it was also to be a job that would give her the freedom to break free, to make the world her stage, and to truly live out the story of her life. 10


DBR Book News Weekly

The following book news clipping was featured on DBR Book News Weekly, from which the excerpt was taken from SpeakEasy, an online newspaper. The article was written by Robin Kawakami.

How ‘Ernest & Celestine’ Found Its EnglishLanguage Voice blogs.wsj.com - When Oscar-nominated film “Ernest & Celestine” hits New York theaters March 14, with a broad release two weeks later, audiences will have the choice to view the animated feature in two languages. The tale of a mouse and a bear who forge an unlikely friendship can be seen in the original French version, with subtitles, or the star-studded English dubbing, featuring the voices of Lauren Bacall, Forest Whitaker, Paul Giamatti and child actress Mackenzie Foy. Taking on the daunting task of creating the dub, along with casting, was the film‟s American distributor, GKIDS. Eric Beckman, the company‟s founder, remembers first seeing “Ernest & Celestine” a couple of years ago at the Annecy film festival. “You had this amazing chemistry between the character of Ernest and the character of Celestine,” he said. “You don‟t usually use that word „chemistry‟ in describing animated film characters.” Read more… Visit DBR Book News Weekly for more information and news on books. 11


1.

Tell us a little about yourself and what you do. I‟m a gran, a Mum, a wife, a friend, a sister, a reader, a writer, a gardener... I‟m trying hard to be a musician with piano lessons but I‟m a slow learner and to be truthful I don‟t practice enough so a musical career is not very likely. I‟ve just started cycling our new rail trails…that‟s a challenge too! I walk, go to the gym, and eat lots of vegetables! I live with my husband, Derek, and our cat Josie, in a coastal village on the Coromandel Peninsula, in New Zealand. We live next door to a large park with huge Pohutukawa trees right outside our gate. Just across the grass…a little bay where I swim, and where Derek fishes from the shore. I grew up on a farm, where there was always plenty to do and see, and to write about. I began writing when I was nine. Small stories and poems were published in a local newspaper and in the children's pages of a national magazine. Teaching was my chosen career and I loved it! With teaching and my family there was no time to write, although from time to time I did scribble a little poetry. As well as teaching I tried some other jobs…I enjoyed working with the adult community as well as with children. When we moved up to the Coromandel in 1995 I started to write again. As I wrote more I taught less, and now writing is my job. Sometimes I‟m really busy with deadlines to meet and it‟s more than a full time job, with late nights and weekends at work too. Sometimes it‟s a new story that keeps me working late. But at other times there is less pressure so I can choose to work part time, and to take time off for friends and family.

2.

Your book At Risk! is an interesting mix of geography, ecology and endangered species. What made you choose to embark on such a project?

I‟m glad your reader enjoyed At Risk! There was a lot of research required for this book. Endangered Species was a great topic to work with. As soon as I saw that the publisher wanted a book about endangered species I wanted to get started right away. When writing about a species it‟s necessary to include the habitat and the geography of where the species is found. And habitat change is devastating for so many plants and animals. I was really happy to be able to include a page on how we can all help care for life on earth.

3.

At Risk! is one of the featured reading books for NYC Educators on the Teacher Created Materials Publishing website. Tell us more about this opportunity.

At Risk! was part of a Math Reader project. Usually with readers the publishing company invites many writers to contribute to a new series of books. If we are keen to be part of the writing team, the publishers send us Author Briefs. The briefs usually give the topics and levels required for the programme. For At Risk! I knew that the publishers needed a book about Endangered Species, where the content 12


could include graphs; a book that could be used for Data Analysis and Probability. The rest was up to me. Having been a teacher helped with the ideas for the graphs. I researched and wrote much more content than the book needed. I felt as if this gave the publishers some flexibility. The publishers did a great job with this book but I did find the phonetic soundings for some of the words to be very odd. Personally I think they detract from the book and I was a bit disappointed to see these in the final copies. I wrote 8 MATH Readers for this series. They were all different. And all fun to do.

4.

We see you have quite a number of published children's books, congratulations on this accomplishment! Is there any special reason why you have decided to write for kids? I‟m not sure about the reason for this other than I still feel like a kid myself. And maybe it is connected to my love of kids, through my teaching career. Also, I‟m a poet at heart…I like the idea of being able to say more with fewer words. I write from pictures in my mind so that‟s probably why I tend to focus on picture books. We all think picture books are for kids but so many of my books have been purchased by adults for other adults so I think we‟re all children at heart. I often start „real adult‟ work but so far nothing very exciting has happened.

5.

Even though you have written quite extensively for kids, we like that within that genre your work varies to all kinds of children's books, including reading books for schools, on several different subjects. Tell us more about that. I enjoy writing both fiction and non-fiction, although my process for non-fiction is very different from my fiction writing. The non-fiction is a planned project, with broad based research to find good content for the story. The fiction just „happens‟. Suddenly I get images, like a film running, or with the rhyming stories I get the rhythm and then the words start coming in. The stories, especially the rhyming ones, run over and over in my mind and often they drive me nuts until I get the words on paper! The readers address so many topics because the school programmes need to be balanced in the content. Often though, we are given a level and the learning requirements and the story ideas are our own. The challenge is getting a story idea that the publisher likes. Once I sent in 12 story outlines, and had one accepted. So with the readers there‟s a lot of work before you actually start writing.

6.

What are you currently working on? I‟m working with publishers in the final editing of two readers – the last of the five chapter books I‟ve done for Australian schools. I‟ve a new picture book in process and I‟m working through some art roughs with amazing illustrator, Ross Kinnaird. I‟m experimenting with an idea for a new Junior Fiction novel. I‟ve had the idea for ages but I‟m not sure it will work. I do have pictures in my mind but only for the setting… I‟m not sure what‟s going to happen there! I have a school visit coming up so I need to plan my programme for that. I‟m working on some new poetry for my collection. And I have all my „paper work‟ to do for the month…all the accounts and the bookkeeping. A writer‟s job is like any other job – you have to keep a record of all the expenses and the income, and all the tax you need to pay. I make myself a work plan, but sometimes a new story comes in and the plan changes.

7.

What do you want your young readers to know?

I want them to know that I‟m so glad they enjoy my stories. A writer needs readers, so thank you everyone. And I need them to know the magic – how a picture in my mind is painted with my words, and then, when they read my words, the picture is then painted in their heads. It‟s truly amazing when you think about it! And I‟d like to thank all the readers who email me, and those who send me some of their own writing. I love reading their words. You can learn more about Dawn McMillan on the author’s website: www.dawnmcmillan.co.nz 13


At Risk!

W

by Dawn McMillan hen 10 year old Jeremy Gordon was asked to write a book report on his class’ reading book, he chose the book At Risk! written by Dawn McMillan.

Here is Jeremy’s report:

The name of the book is At Risk! and the author is Dawn McMillan. The genre is a non-fiction story telling us about endangered animals, and plants, and their habitats. The setting of this book varies. Some of the report comes from the Arctic region, others from grassland regions, forest and ocean habitats, and various parts of the world including United States, Africa, and the Congo. The main characters in the story are not the people but the endangered animals and their habitats. These include tigers, polar bears, killer whales, seals, rhinoceroses, woodpeckers, ferrets, turtles, geese, and their habitats. My favorite picture is the one of the tiger standing on the rock looking out. He is probably looking out for his prey. The part of the story I like best is this cool fact about the Sumatran Tiger - the male tiger weighs about 260 pounds and the female weighs about 200 pounds. I think that is awesome! The book, written in 2008, revealed frightening facts. Dawn McMillan reported that "scientists predict that Sumatran tigers may become extinct in just10 years". She also stated that "since 1900, over 80% of the Sumatran tigers’ forest habitat has been destroyed. There are fewer than 400 Sumatran tigers left in the wild." I like this part of the book because it lets me know that as humans we need to take better care of our environment to protect the animal species, especially the Sumatran tigers. I learned that because “much of the tiger’s habitat has been destroyed, some tigers now hunt farm animals for food. As a result they are often shot by farmers. Tigers are also hunted for their skins.” To save the tigers we need to stop 14


hunting and killing them and we need to preserve their environment. I would read another book by the author Dawn McMillan because I learned a lot from this story. There are so many different animals all over the world, and their habitats, that need us to protect them. The graphs in the book help us to see which animal species need our help. One graph showed that birds were the animal group that lost the most species in 2004. Another graph showed that "animals can become endangered or extinct if their habitats are damaged." In reading the graph, I noticed that between 2000 and 2006, amphibians became greatly endangered. I would never think amphibians could be endangered! Dawn McMillan also used graphs to show that forests habitats are being destroyed. This would greatly affect animals like the Sumatran tiger who lives in forest habitats. I like that the author included the graphs because they let you see how many animals are at risk, and the numbers made it more real for me. The graphs also help me to understand why these animals are endangered. I did not want to put the book down because I was touched by the way the author spoke out about protecting the animals! I encourage others to read the book too because we all need to do something to prevent the plants and animals from becoming extinct. I like the way the story ends because it tells us how we can save endangered species. I learned that there are laws to care for plants and animals and there are laws to stop pollution. The book tells us "new forests are being planted. Some endangered animals are being cared for in zoos." Dawn McMillan advises us to help save endangered species by doing the following:    

Look after wildlife areas. Stop pollution. Join a group that helps endangered species. Recycle, reduce, reuse.

Dawn McMillan encourages us to "...speak up! Tell people that you care about the plants and animals in our world." I say the same too! [Courtesy of Jeremy Gordon, age 10.]

The book At Risk! is one of several books written by Dawn McMillan. Visit the author’s website to see her collection and to learn more about her. There you’ll find children’s books on several subjects and for various ages. This is one way to begin sculpting that reading library you’ve always wanted for your kids! 15


2014 Reading Challenge Join in the FUN!

b00k r3vi3ws invites you to participate in its 2014 Reading Book Challenge! So you want to read books by authors you’ve never read before? Well here’s your chance to do it!

Here's what you need to know about b00k r3vi3ws 2014 Reading Challenge: 1. Read as many books as possible, by authors that YOU haven't read before. 2. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. 3. Books read may be in any form (audio, print, e-book). 4. The books can overlap with other reading challenges. 5. Post your links to your reviews each month to share with other participants. 6. The challenge runs from January 1, 2014 to December 1, 2014. It‟s never too late to Join In! Challenge Levels are: Amateur : Choose to read 1 - 25 New Authors Lover : Choose to read 26 - 50 New Authors Expert : Choose to read 51 - 75 New Authors Fanatic : Choose to read 76 or above New Authors To know more about this Reading Challenge and to join in with countless readers and authors, sign up for free on b00k r3vi3ws website and begin today! 16


Reading Challenge Books you might be interested in!

O

Son of God - The Life of Jesus in You Leader Kit by Rick Warren

O

Conversations with Myself by Nelson Mandela

O

Things Fall Apar t by Chinua Achebe

O

The Rescue by Nicholas Sparks

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Here

is a list of newly released books to keep your kids busy! These are now available in local libraries nationwide or anywhere books are sold:

For Ages 8 to 12: 1. Middle School Ultimate Showdown by James Patterson 2. My Weirder School #10: Mr. Jack is a Maniac by Dan Gutman 3. The Julian Chapter by R.J. Palacio

4. The River by Alessandro Sanna

DBR Books

The Books Magazine 18

March | April 2014


For Ages 3 to 7: 5. The End (Almost) by Jim Benton 6. Tippy and the Night Parade by Lilli Carre 7. Hi, Koo! by Jon J. Muth

DBR Books

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Packaged, two pack of 4 oz bottles each.

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The Books Magazine 19

March | April 2014


Celebrate Your Success! Advertise your books with us in our next issue! Make 2014 your best year yet! For more info: The Books Magazine dbrdesigns1@gmail.com

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The Books Magazine, March/April 2014  

A book magazine featuring helpful book reviews, author and illustrator interviews, and book sales for children’s and YA fiction books.

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