Posted in alphabetica, just for fun, tagged art, book covers, children's books, hand lettering, humor, illustration, linzie hunter, typography on November 25, 2014 |
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#50 in an ongoing series of posts celebrating the alphabet
Right now I am loving the work of crazy-talented London-based illustrator and hand lettering artist Linzie Hunter.
Originally from Scotland, she graduated from Glasgow University and then studied illustration at the Chelsea College of Art and Design.
Linzie’s distinctive, exuberant doodles have graced everything from magazine and book covers, posters, cookie tins, children’s toys, stickers and stationery to oodles of promotional materials. Her impressive international client list includes The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal, Scholastic, HarperCollins, Roaring Brook Press, Sainsbury’s, Random House, Macmillan, American Girl, and Marks & Spencer.
Her hand drawn letters have irresistible “personalities” and her zany characters often prompt a double take. I also love her maps and ongoing poster series of Uninspiring Messages. And yes, she’s illustrated a children’s book: A Small Brown Dog With a Wet Pink Nose (written by Stephanie Stuve-Bodeen).
Enjoy this mini-trip to Linzie Land! :)
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Posted in book reviews (all genres), guest posts, middle grade fiction, tagged bread, children's books, ebooks, flatbread, food, historical fiction, lefse, margo sorenson, middle grade novels, north dakota, norwegian culture, scandinavian cooking on July 7, 2014 |
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I’m happy to welcome dear friend and award winning author Margo Sorenson back to Alphabet Soup today. :)
The good news is that her middle grade historical novel, Tori and the Sleigh of Midnight Blue (first released in paperback back in 2003), is now available as an ebook!
Eleven-year-old Tori and her family are struggling with the Great Depression in North Dakota, and the death of her beloved Papa has been the severest blow of all. To aspiring writer Tori, everything is changing for the worse—her friends are acting too grown-up, and her little brother Otto invades her privacy. When a Norwegian bachelor-farmer begins courting Mama, Tori writes in her journal that her life will be ruined. What will Tori discover about forgiveness and acceptance as she tries to keep her life from changing?
I enjoyed learning about Scandinavian customs through this beautifully written novel, which reminded me of childhood favorites like All-of-a Kind Family and the Little House Books, where family ties, simple pleasures and a strong sense of community sustain the characters through difficult times.
In the chapter “Missing!”, Tori reluctantly helps her mother roll lefse for Thanksgiving. She usually loves making the traditional flatbread, but this would be their second Thanksgiving without Papa, and besides, she was angry that Mama had invited suitor Bjorn Oppestadt to dinner. How dare she? He wasn’t family!
Today, Margo talks about rolling lefse with her own family. It sounds like such delicious fun. Adopt me, please :).
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Posted in book reviews (all genres), picture books, tagged children's books, concord, cooks, food, historical fiction, illustration, judith byron schachner, picture books, ralph waldo emerson, transcendentalism on July 1, 2014 |
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“Your work should be in praise of what you love.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
The best cooks know that sometimes it’s those intangible ingredients that can make or break a recipe.
A certain slant of light, a sprinkling of happy anticipation, a generous cup of love. Two people can prepare the same dish with notably different results. That’s because cooking is a transformative process — part magic, part spiritual, part meditative. Every cook brings his or her own je ne sais quoi to the table.
In Mr. Emerson’s Cook by Judith Byron Schachner (Dutton, 1998), we see what happens when Irish cook Annie Burns finally discovers what special ingredient she must use to help employer Ralph Waldo Emerson regain his appetite.
Emerson lived at “Bush House” from 1835-1880. Here, he raised his family, wrote his most important works, and entertained leading transcendentalists like Thoreau, the Alcotts, and Elizabeth Peabody.
Fact and fiction are interwoven in this beautifully written gem of a story, which takes place at Emerson’s home in Concord, Massachusetts, where he lived with his second wife Lidian and their three children.
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Remember how excited I was to hear that Colin Firth was going to voice Paddington Bear in the new movie to be released Christmas Day in the U.S.?
The other day I saw the official movie trailer and something felt wrong. Can’t explain it — the bear on the screen looked like Paddington, but he didn’t feel like the character I had grown to love so much from reading Michael Bond’s books. I know how more often than not, the book is usually better than the movie. And the producer of this project did say they were going to put their own spin on the character. But still.
See for yourself:
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Okay, maybe I’m just used to the Paddington puppets from the old TV series. Or maybe I’m stuck on the Paddington of my own imagination. Maybe I like him so much I’d be disappointed no matter what.
Now I’ve learned that Colin Firth has left the film. Apparently it was mutually agreed that his voice didn’t suit the on-screen character they had created (who so far feels more like a “Ted” than a child-centric bear).
Sigh. Wonder who will take Colin’s place. No one can, really.
I really need a marmalade sandwich.
Copyright © 2014 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.
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Posted in book reviews (all genres), picture books, presidential food, tagged american history, book reviews, children's books, eleanor roosevelt, food, franklin delano roosevelt, Great Britain, history, hot dogs, leslie kimmelman, picnics, picture books, presidents, victor juhasz, WWII on June 11, 2014 |
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When is a hot dog more than just a hot dog?
When it’s served on a silver tray to the first reigning British monarchs to ever set foot on American soil!
Yes, that’s precisely what happened when King George VI and Queen Elizabeth visited the United States in June 1939.
The King and Queen arrive at Union Station (June 8, 1939).
To celebrate this momentous occasion, Eleanor Roosevelt decided to host an all-American picnic at Top Cottage, their beautiful countryside retreat overlooking the Hudson River Valley in Hyde Park, New York.
All illustrations © 2014 Victor Juhasz
In Hot Dog!: Eleanor Roosevelt Throws a Picnic (Sleeping Bear Press, 2014), Leslie Kimmelman recounts how the indefatigable First Lady planned the picnic and why she felt it was important for both our countries. With Europe on the brink of war and the U.S. in the throes of the Great Depression, this would be a good chance for Americans to set aside their cares for awhile to welcome these special guests. Such a personal gesture of friendship would also allow Americans to see a more human, accessible side to the Royals.
(click to enlarge)
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