Saturday Sum Up

Here’s what I found bookish & interesting on my tour around the Internet this week:

Let’s start off with a little John Green.  Here’s his quickfire list of 18 books he loves, but which you probably have never heard of. Love him.

These List Challenges were flying all over the Internet this week and they’re fun to do because instead of just an actual list – you get book covers and a satisfying sound every time you check one you’ve read.

I have embraced all sorts of social media, even giving in to my long-held belief that Facebook is the devil and rejoining, but one thing I don’t have is Tumblr. If I was so inclined, though, this would be a terrific place to start: The 25 Best Tumblr Accounts for Book Nerds.

Tomorrow is the last day for the Twitter Fiction Festival.

Have a great day.



Saturday Sum up – Feb 29

I am a regular bookstore visitor. Generally on Friday night, after we drop my daughter off at ballet, my son and I head over to Indigo and while away a couple hours, browsing and barely resisting the copious books. I have a Kobo. I don’t even know how to set it up and have no real desire to. We don’t actually have an independent bookstore in my town, although we do have a couple second-hand bookstores, which I try to visit when I can.

This article by Canadian Writer David Bidini is, I think, a sad reflection on the state of independent bookstores.

Reading between the times to understand the death of indie bookstores

Speaking of indie bookstores, The Bookseller posted a disheartening article about the decline of independent bookstores in the UK. Read it here.

But just so you don’t think all is lost – read this awesome story about a young boy who wants to start a library for homeless people.

Enjoy your day!

Saturday Sum-up

Here’s what I found bookish & interesting on my tour around the Internet this week:


From Coffee and a Good Book


I remember reading The Diary of Anne Frank when I was eleven or twelve. I was profoundly moved when I visited the Annex while visiting Amsterdam in the early 1990s. The world continues to surprise and dismay me:

Hundreds of Anne Frank’s book and other books about the Holocaust have been vandalized in dozens of libraries in Japan. Read the story here.

Dare I say it? Here’s an event even more sacred than the Stanley Cup! That’s right, it’s almost time for Canada Reads.

Do you know that there’s this whole thing on YouTube where people talk about the books they buy.  It’s compulsively watchable especially for those of us who buy multiple books at a time.

Have a great day.

Saturday Sum-up – February 15

Here’s what I found bookish & interesting on my tour around the Internet this week:


I’m celebrating my 500th post with today’s Saturday sum up.  That’s a lot of book talk, people!

Do you judge a book by its cover? Of course you do. Buzzfeed has posted 22 Absolutely Stunning Victorian Book Covers

ca7d632dd0ddbade22edddec8f6c6cbaI actually love this idea for the classroom – at the end of the year, I’ll have have students choose a book from my library that they loved and wrap it up for students to choose the following year. It’s something I actually planning on doing in the spring.

I watch my students choose books all the time. The students who don’t really care about reading just walk over to the shelves and grab a book – barely even looking at the cover. The keen readers do what I do: look at the cover, read the blurb on the book, maybe even check out the first paragraph before deciding to take it. More and more students are asking me for my advice – and they all know that I LOVE to offer it.

Not that I ever have any trouble deciding what to read next – I practically have a bookstore’s worth of unread titles in my house – but if you’re someone who isn’t sure what should be next on your tbr pile, check out What Should I Read Next, a handy site that lets you enter your current read into a search engine and then spits out a variety of titles which might interest you. It’s very cool.

And did you know there is actually a book cover archive? lr shelves

Book covers are actually one of the reasons (okay, call me superficial) that I prefer physical books over virtual ones. My reading life is like art…and looking at my heaving bookshelves never fails to give me pleasure.

I’d like to celebrate my 500th post with a little contest. Leave a comment below, or follow my Ludic Reader Facebook page (link on the right) and I’ll enter your name in a draw to win a bookish prize pack. Contest closes tomorrow (Feb 16) at midnight (Atlantic time).

Have a great Saturday!

Saturday Sum-up – Feb 8

Here’s what I found bookish & interesting on my tour around the Internet this week:


The above picture will never happen to me. That’s because this is my to be read shelf!  IMG_0211

It is both awesome and daunting to have so many books waiting to be read, especially when I also have a little notebook filled with hundreds more titles

Not nearly as often as I should, I visit the blogs I’ve linked to (see right) to see what other bloggers are reading and talking about. One click led to another and suddenly I came across this fabulous page: 100 Essential Sites for Voracious Readers. I’m just – gah! Where has this page been all my life?

I suspect that many of you are already familiar with Book Drum, a wonderful site that allows readers to offer (academic) insight into the books they love by way of pictures, video, footnotes etc. I actually submitted a project – for lack of a better word – on Helen Humphreys’ magnificent novel, The Lost Garden. For teachers out there – try Teaching with Book Drum.

I suspect that everyone and their dog has seen this sweet little video – but just in case you missed it:

Happy Saturday!


Saturday Sum-up – Feb 1

Here’s what I found bookish & interesting on my tour around the Internet this week:


I think bookshelves are the best thing ever…and I’m not alone. Check out this interesting article written by local designer, Judith Mackin: By the Book Design

I have a nice collection of book shelf pictures on Pinterest or for the motherlode you could check out Book Shelf Porn.

Everyone knows I am an avid reader. I am also an English teacher. Even when you put those two fact together, it still  doesn’t mean I’ve read every book I should have read. That’s why this brief guide to faking your way literary classics when you haven’t actually read them guide is so handy.

The whole world went gaga over Gillian Flynn’s novel Gone Girl and in case you’re looking for something else to read in the mad matrimony genre, check out this list of like titles.

On this day in literary history in 1918, Scottish writer Muriel Sparks was born. Ms. Sparks is best known for her novel The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie

Saturday Sum up – January 25

Here’s what I found bookish & interesting on my tour around the Internet this week:

I loved this story about people forming a human chain to move books to a new library – now that’s bookish dedication!

For the past couple of years I’ve taken part in Goodreads Reading Challenge. I also track my reading at the 50 Book Pledge, which I love even more as it’s very visual.  I view participating in these things as a way of challenging myself to read more and do other stuff (watch tv, waste time online) less. The Guardian views the reading challenge another way. Read The bad side of Goodreads’ Reading Challenge.

My brother Mark bought me a Kobo for Christmas. He’s a dear man. “You read a lot,” he said to me when I thanked him. Yep, I read a lot….of BOOKS. Like… books that I can hold in my hand with real pages I can turn and then store on my shelves when I am done.  Nevertheless, I tried to set the damn thing up and failed and now it’s just sitting on my bedroom table, abandoned. So…

this makes me inordinantly happy: How Book Porn is Actually Revolutionalizing the Book World

Check out this comprehensive list of 50 Essential Mystery Novels. It’s missing Thomas H. Cook, a mystery writer at the top of my list, but it’s still a great start for newbies to the genre.

Finally – here’s a fantastic list of books for booklovers.

Saturday sum-up – Jan 18th

Here’s what I found bookish & interesting on my tour around the Internet this week:


Why does too many books still not seem like hoarding to me?

Looking for a way to spice up your reading lives? Check out these cool Reading Bingo Challenge cards over at Random House.

I love The Nerdy Bookclub and they recently posted about Canadian children’s books.

I am a big fan of Nick Bantock. He’s probably best known for his Griffin and Sabine trilogy and if you haven’t read them I highly recommend them. Anyway, my son and I made our weekly pilgrimage to Indigo last night and I stumbled upon Bantock’s latest endeavour, The Trickster’s Hat. I didn’t purchase it, but I’m going to. It’s a beautiful little book about creativity with 49 activities you can do to promote it in your own life. Visit Nick’s Etsy page. (Edited on Feb 22 to add this review of The Trickster’s Hat from the National Post.)

And here’s something avid readers already know: Great novels can change your life…and your brain

Today in literary history: A.A. Milne, author of Winnie the Pooh was born in London on this day in 1882. My mom read me and my brotheKumpulan gambar kartun winnie the pooh Yang Lucu dan Imut Brs Winnie the Pooh  all the time when we were kids. I loved those stories, but I loved my mom reading to me even more.

““If you live to be a hundred, I want to live to be a hundred minus one day so I never have to live without you.”  A.A. Milne

Saturday Sum-up

Here’s what I found bookish & interesting on my tour around the Internet this week:

I do a lot of reading about reading. The longer I teach, the less I care about testing and grammar and the more I care about reading. When students leave these hallowed halls (and the hallowed halls of whatever post-secondary route they take) they’re not going to read and then make a poster. At best, they might start a book blog, but even then they’re not going to talk about the figurative devices they come across in the books they read. The question then becomes, ultimately, how do I instill in my students a life-long appreciation for reading.

This article was an interesting look at that very topic: How to teach reading for pleasure.

Yet one more reason to love Jon Stewart:

(with thanks to @JasonElsom for the original post)

And, egads, The Telegraph shares its list of the Top Ten Young Adult books of 2013 and not only have I not read any, I’ve only heard of two.

On this day in literary history (in 1928) Thomas Hardy (Jude the Obscure; The Mayor of Casterbridge) died.  He was 87. His heart is buried in the grave of his first wife and his ashes are buried next to Charles Dickens in Westminster Abbey.

Saturday Sum-Up

Here’s what I found bookish & interesting on my tour around the Internet this week:

read every dayArt from Scholastic.

The Guardian’s Philip Hensher had some thoughtful things to say about reading: This should be a golden age for readers, but it feels like the end of days

I was particularly interested in Mr. Hensher’s assertion that even reading 15 books a year has a positive impact on your life. A mere 15 books, people! Since I intend to do way better than that (I read 62 books in 2013), I’ve already signed up for Savvy Readers’ 50 Book Pledge. It’s easy to use and a wonderful way to see what you’ve read.

Speaking of seeing what you read…

If you are a book voyeur, you need to follow  Savidge Reads regular feature Other People’s Bookshelves  Simon lets people share their reading lives via their impressive bookshelves and it’s always fascinating.


I am not ashamed (okay, maybe I’m a teensy bit ashamed) to admit that I can’t wait to watch this remake of Flowers in the Attic. Teenagers of a certain age devoured this book (come on, admit it!) and this remake looks a bazillion times better than the 1987 movie.

On this day in literary history:

Albert Camus, author of The Plague, was killed in a car accident near Sens in 1960.

And a recommendation:

If you haven’t already discovered her blog, I highly recommend The Perpetual Page-Turner. Jamie updates regularly with interesting (and often interactive) content. If you are a book-lover, she’s definitely one to follow.