Mimetic March Staff Picks Part II
March Staff Picks Part 2!
After months of social isolation due to the Pandemic, do you feel that your “conversation muscles” have atrophied a bit? This just might be the read for you! We all know how connections benefit our basic health and psyche. Author Patti DeNucci has done extensive research on the skills and benefits of communication, and coupled with her interest and ability to communicate, she has written this straight-forward, easy to digest guide filled with advice, guidance and inspiration. The book format invites readers to reflect on their own conversations, and choose the information that applies to them. I know first hand that Patti has the innate capacity to engage in fun and meaningful conversations. (She’s my sister-in-law) , and I may be biased, but I love this book! If you enjoyed Atlas of the Heart by Brene Brown, then I know you’ll relish More Than Just Talk. If you don’t believe me, check out Patti’s Podcasts and Ted Talks.
This brand new cookbook is phenomenal! I sat down and read it like a novel when I first grabbed a copy. The introduction consists of a short history of the variety of dishes that are labeled as ‘curry’ throughout the world, from India following the spice trails into South America. Curry, as a category, has a remarkably long history that is often tied into human movement and accomplishments, and I found the information fascinating! These recipes are easy to follow, and include options you’ve definitely heard of all the way down the spectrum to brand new options with ingredients you probably haven’t heard of. I have been loving the recipes I’ve been working through. Admittedly, I’ve placed some mail orders for spices that are not available in our sleepy mountain town, but they have been well worth it to create authentic and delicious dishes. Substitutions have their place, but I would argue that this book isn’t it. I have always believed that food is often the best way to know people, and this book solidified that mindset in me as gospel. If you loved Korean Vegan or Mi Cocina as masterpieces of culinary knowledge and human resourcefulness, I highly recommend you pick this book up next.
Sarah Anderson is an incredible cartoonist, and her third collection of comics does not disappoint! This is a self-declared survival guide for frantic modern life, and it is especially poignant for those of us whose brains have a little more difficulty than the rest of the world. Her comics have a wide range of subjects, from her love of cats, procrastination, being a woman in a male-dominated society, to the hilarious struggle of day-to-day life that just about anyone can relate to. Pick up this fabulous comic collection if you need a deep belly laugh, or just need to feel a little less alone.
People say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. But it’s no secret most of us do. I was fascinated by this cover. Every time I look at it I notice something new. The Nightbirds are the best-kept secret of the Houses. A fairytale for most and saviors for few. The magic in this book was a breath of fresh air. Literally. I would highly recommend it if you love strong female magic wielders, fantasy cities and suspense. I’m highly anticipating the sequel.
Check out the audiobook!
We’ve seen it so often in the news; people of color, such as Philandro Castile and George Floyd, confronted by police who respond to “potential danger” with deadly force. Author Brian Buckmire uses his experiences as a NYC Public Defense Attorney to craft a story for teens, as well as adults, who want to better understand social justice and the truths and pain of growing up as a person of color in America.
It’s not every adolescent person of color whose dad is a public defender, teaching his children how to invoke their rights and how to safely handle potential police encounters. When 14 year old Reed and his 12 year old sister are accused of a crime they did not commit, they must bury their indignation, and remember what their father has taught them, in order to “come home safe!” In my opinion, this is an excellent book to use as a conversation piece with your own adolescent, to better understand the America of today, and maybe fight to make change!
Check out the audiobook!
A lovely queer book set in an ocean town. You never know what might be living just beneath the waves. Stunning pictures and beautiful colors tell the story of a young queer girl, Morgan, who wants nothing to do with the place she lives. She wishes to leave and start over somewhere new. During a storm and a lack of judgment, Morgan falls into the ocean. From the depths something or someone saves her. I hope you enjoy this tale because it is both a tale and has tails.
WOW. What a ride. I stayed up reading this way past my bedtime. I could not put it down. The characters were beautiful and the colors! *Chefs kiss*. What I thought was a simple romance turned into a twisting tale of betrayal, magic and heartbreak. The end had me crying. I will definitely be putting this on the shelf nearest to my bed for those nights when sleep leaves me and I need a good book to read. Definitely try this out if you are a fan of Coney Island, magicians and pet rabbits with spiked collars.
I am so glad I picked up this book. “The Swifts” is right in the same vein as “A Series of Unfortunate Events”, “The Westing Game”, and “The Mysterious Benedict Society”, but with its own unique, kooky twists! When a Swift child is born, a name is chosen at random from the giant, mysterious family dictionary. Shenanigan Swift is a little sister in the Swift household, who loves adventures and playing pranks. Though she often lives up to her name, she’s begun to have this nagging feeling that there might be more to it.
The Swift family is now in a state of disrepair, and as the family reunion looms ahead, so does the race to find the elusive Swift family treasure. Shenanigan is determined to be the one who finds it first, and relish in all the glory! But when a gruesome murder shakes the family’s confidence, Shenanigan, her sisters Felicity and Phenomena, and their new cousin Erf, might be the only ones able to solve the case and save everyone from a similar fate.
This story is so much fun to read. I could not put it down, and tore through pages to discover who the murderer was! This book also writes non-binary and LGBTQ+ characters in such a touching and accepting way, and would be a wonderful way to educate children and adults alike about the beauty of being exactly who you are.
Shenanigan fully embodies her name, as do the many other in the family Swift. Phenomena is a lover of science, Maelstrom is a man of the sea, and Aunt Inheritance is obsessed with family tradition. But Shenanigan feels she is much more than her mischievous name suggests, and she’ll need to prove it during the Swift family treasure hunt/ family reunion after Arch-Aunt Schadenfreude is pushed down the stairs.
The Swifts is a witty, fantastic, and whimsical mystery. It’s sure to keep any book lover reading and on the edge of their seat.
Check out the audiobook!
As someone who has always been interested in Greek mythology, and especially the gender roles within the myths, this collection of myths with swapped gender roles was super fascinating to read. My personal favorite of the stories was Thesea and the Minoheifer (a retelling of Theseus and the Minotaur). I also really enjoyed The Fall of Icara (instead of Icarus) because of the mother/daughter dynamic that replaced the original father/son dynamic. Although all of these stories are gender swapped, they still portray the original meaning and significance of the myths. There is also an included index of the gender swapped names, which is super helpful. I would recommend this book to anyone with an interest in Greek mythology– not just kids!
This book is a perfect addition to any family’s library!! With some of the most stunning illustrations I have ever seen in a picture book, ‘The Fire of Stars’ is a beautiful combination story; each page tells the story of the birth of a star, and details the Biography of Cecilia Payne–the astronomer who discovered what stars are actually made of!
For any younger reader interested in learning more about science, and the magnificent mysteries of the universe, this is the book for you!
This is much more than a fun book for kids! It’s a lesson in fluent thinking, a skill I incorporated with my gifted students. Kids love it, because it’s so much fun, and it will definitely encourage thinking! The topic of this story; how many things can be used as a hat? An acorn is a hat for fingers, a roof is a hat for a house, etc. Once you’ve read this story, extend this fluent thinking to other objects! I guarantee that your kids will LOVE this!