Learning doesn't stop when the last bell rings, though. Children gain new knowledge through experiences in the summer months; car trips, family time, sports. Teachers are learners by nature, too, so after a day or two of some down time, most are back at it, taking classes, reorganizing, and planning for the next year. Many of my teacher peeps are readers, therefore for most of us, one of our first indulgences of the summer is opening the cover of that novel that you've been waiting to read.
As promised in my previous blog post Black and White, here are some books Eloise is planning to read this summer.
I'm in to Andy Andrews. You can see them on the top left. I loved The Noticer and will be blogging about that one soon, so I bought some of his other books.
I started The Selection by Kiera Cass yesterday. You can see it there in the middle. It's the one with the girl with the pretty, blue dress on the cover. My mom found it on a book list called Cures for the Hunger Games Hangover. Moms of the world, this is a good read for girls. A lighter version of Katniss. Sort of Hunger Games meets The Bachelor. If you thought Hunger Games was too violent, you'll like this one much better.
You can also see The Key peeking out from behind the stack. That is my book. I haven't read it back yet since September 6, 2011, the day I finished it. I'm cracking open the cover again tomorrow with my red pen in hand to make my final changes before I send it off to seek its publisher.
As you can see, War and Peace is still in the mix for the twentieth straight year. Still on page 51. Can't get past it. I get sidetracked every time I get to Princess Ellen wearing a dress made of moss. Eloise gets to thinking what is a moss dress? and go google "moss dress" and all that comes up are pictures of Kate Moss. Then I sit and wonder how a person can be so skinny, and the whistle blows in the freight train of my brain and I head away from War and Peace. Again.
The Language of Flowers is one that I received as a gift from two of my students last week. I opened the cover and inhaled deeply this morning. I do have an admitted overly keen sense of smell, but I did not think that I could actually smell the flowers that were on the cover. I just like the smell of the pages. The feel of the book is preferred to the weight of a Kindle for me. Plus, I can't read with my Kindle in the bathtub. I'm far too clumsy and that is one expensive slip.
As you can see, I am a woman of my word. I promised Tracy Southern I'd finish the Twilight series before the last movie came out in November. Eclipse and Breaking Dawn on on the slate. That leaves me two blood sucking novels to read this summer.
Speaking of blood sucking, that made me hear that train whistle in my head again. Blood sucking makes me think of blood flow, which reminds me of another book. It's been one HOT topic of conversation among women this spring. In fact, I think some of your eyes were scanning my stack for this one, given the title of this blog today. Hmmmm....what could you all be so curious about? Curious to see if Eloise has read it.
Read what, you ask?
The one that sold TEN MILLION copies in just six weeks.
The most purchased book from amazon for a month straight....(so you don't have to go IN to the book store to buy it--it just shows up in a box on your front doorstep for only you to know about...)..............
Ahhhhh.......there it is, Readers. The one you've been waiting for, especially for you nosy ones that skimmed through all my boring words above. I know you pressed your cursor on the down arrow to see if the cover popped up, down the post a bit. If you read the book, that would probably the last downward motion you'd see for awhile, because everything in your being stands at attention when you read it. Eyelids. Hair on your arms. And other parts.
I can feel my interested readers going retrieve their coffee cups now. This blog post is bound to be a juicy one, so maybe you reached for a beer, or even a pack of cigarettes instead. That's okay with me. No judgment here. Whatever makes you comfortable while you settle in for a thinking session inspired by Eloise.
Now hang on a minute and quit scrolling down looking for the juicy stuff. My 67 year old mother who lives next door to me is healing a bum hip. She's my biggest fan. Helen's moving a little slow as of late and she needs an extra thirty seconds to retrieve those smokes of hers. I get the sense I'm worrying her a bit with this post. She's a fretter. Over the years I've found it all goes better for me after she has a couple of puffs because the nicotine calms her. Plus she can't whap me as hard when she's got a long, thin one held between her fingers. Let's wait, Readers. Do it for me.
Give her some time.........
She doesn't like to miss anything..............
Wait, I can hear her door opening--she's moved outside...........
Should I hide?......
I'm whispering now, peeking from the curtains Gladys Kravitz style. Remember her? She's the neighbor from Bewitched.
(still whispering) Shoot, I can see her out my window. Can't find her lighter. Looking through my dad's Jeep for one. He always keeps one in the glove box.
Whew! Looks like she's got it....................
Thank you, Dad! Came through again, unbeknownst to you. You'll get an extra good gift for Father's Day this year...............
She's heading back inside...................
I think I'm safe.............for now.....................
Sorry to keep you in suspense, Readers. Now let's get on with it. Eloise's discussion of 50 Shades of Gray.
No......... I see you think you've caught me there. Teacher didn't misspell a word (oh how people love that). I meant the AY gray. Because before you move into any good story, you first need to teach the background information. It's a teaching technique. Build background information prior to the story. Time for your history lesson. (Just heard you all groan).
As for the spelling of the word itself, gray versus grey; spelling doesn't really matter. It means a shade of black. According to "The Grammarist", the "ay" gray is typically used in America and the "ey" grey is more often used in England. E.L. James the author is from London, so one should assume that this was the reason for the spelling on her book title GREY, although Grey was the main character's last name.
I did a little research on the actual color gray and found some fascinating information on Wikipedia. (Kenyan, quit scrolling down to get to the good stuff!) There are actually many shades of gray, falling into the warm gray or cool gray categories depending on which colors are blended into the black. See:
In fact, I consulted two highly valued resources--Wikipedia and the Crayola Crayon website. I made a list of as many shades of gray as I could until I got to number 39. Then my sources ran dry, no more names and I wanted to get to 50. Because I am an excellent namer of things, and have secret nicknames in my head for almost all of you (precisely why I never drink too much), I took the liberty of naming some myself. Here is the list:
Proving my earlier premise that nothing is ever truly black and white--it is only a shade of gray.
3. Achromatic gray
5. Light gray
6. Medium gray
7. Dark Medium gray (clever)
9. Dim gray (must have named it after the math light bulb in my head)
10. Davy's gray
13. Ash (needed to add this to color correct my hair once from a dye job gone bad)
16. Cool Gray
17. Cadet gray
18. Blue gray
19. Glaucous--had to look this one up--pale grayish-bluish green, something to do with plants
20. Slate gray
21. Warm gray
23. Mountbatten--still not clear how this relates. Homework: look this one up yourself.
24. Rose Quartz
27. Wild blue yonder
29. Steel Gray
30. Granite Gray
32. Black coral pearl
33. Quick silver
34. Deep space sparkle
35. Mummy's tomb
36. Black shadows
37. Sonic silver
38. Eerie black
Eloise's shades of gray
40. Bubbles the Elephant--after the elephant we used to have at the Erie Zoo
41. Smoke and ashes--after my mother's cigarettes
42. Stray gray--after my deceased cat Amtrak
43. Old bruise--I have several on my legs
44. Rotting tooth--just because I thought of it
45. Tar n Chip--annoying thing they do to my road every summer
46. Hook and Line--for Sam
47. Dustbunny--find several taking up residence under my bed every year
48. Stone cold--after my favorite ice cream that I rarely indulge in
49. Sinister--after the book
50. Flogger--read it and you'll find out
51. ????????---I thought of a really good one, but you'll have to wait.......................
Good things come to those who wait, Readers. You know what Eloise says, You can't rush a good story.
I know you're all settled in with your smokes and your booze waiting to see what I have to say about this book. But sorry. Gotta wait.
Just as E.L. James milked this story into three books, I too shall stretch my thoughts into a third blog post. Yes, I planned for three. Suckered you all; I admit it. The Black and White was all a set up. I baited the hook with the line shades of gray in Lesson 151 just to make you wonder. I dropped the line with this one, to add some suspense. Now you all bit. Tomorrow I'll have to reel you into the Lamp Post to read my thoughts on this very ____________ book.
Curious to know my adjective above? How about my name for shade number 51? Check back later to find out.