27 April 2013

Out of my Mind – By: Sharon M. Draper (Teen Fiction)

In my humble opinion, curiosity and imagination are the keys to empathy.  Unless you’re curious about what makes other people tick, or how they experience the world, you’ll never really care about them. One of my favorite things about reading is the way it pulls you from your own world, and places you squarely in someone else’s. It’s practice for empathizing with others in real life. That’s why I feel so strongly that books like this are irreplaceable.

In this wonderfully written story, Melody is a young girl, living with cerebral palsy.  She is physically disabled, but intellectually vibrant. With the aid of new technology, she is finally able to venture out of her own mind and into the world, with that comes school, and all of its challenges. As a reader you are able to watch someone try to carve out her unique place in the world, in harder circumstances than most of us face in our daily lives.

Bookwyrm Rating – Meat & Potatoes

21 April 2013

Unbroken - By: Laura Hillenbrand (Nonfiction)

I was woefully uneducated on the history of WWII in the Pacific. However, this book addressed that lack with its combination of history and biography. This is the story of Louis Vamperini, who grew up became an Olympic hero, joined the air force during WWII and came back to tell about it.

After surviving an aerial battle and his plane crashing into the sea, Vamperini went on to survive 47 days aboard the emergency raft, and internment as a prisoner of war. Laura Hillenbrand is a gifted storyteller, and shipwreck, imprisonment and survival make for a lot of excitement.  But, the real story is the impression that it all made on the men who survived it.

Bookwyrm Rating: Vegetable