The Scraps Book

ScrapsBookBy Lois Ehlert

The renowned Caldecott Honoree and illustrator of Chicka Chicka Boom Boom provides a moving, intimate, and inspiring inside look at her colorful picture book career.

Lois Ehlert always knew she was an artist. Her parents encouraged her from a young age by teaching her how to sew and saw wood and pound nails, and by giving her colorful art supplies. They even gave her a special spot to work that was all her own.

Today, many years and many books later, Lois takes readers and aspiring artists on a delightful behind-the-scenes tour of her books and her book-making process. Part fascinating retrospective, part moving testament to the value of following your dreams, this richly illustrated picture book is sure to inspire children and adults alike to explore their own creativity.

Math Doesn’t Suck

Math Doesnt SuckMath Doesn’t Suck: How to Survive Middle School Math Without Losing Your Mind or Breaking a Nail
By Danica McKellar

From a well-known actress and math genius – a groundbreaking guide to mathematics for middle school girls, their parents, and educators.

As the math education crisis in this country continues to make headlines, research continues to prove that it is in middle school when math scores begin to drop – especially for girls – in large part due to the relentless social conditioning that tells girls they “can’t do” math, and that math is “uncool.” Young girls today need strong female role models to embrace the idea that it’s okay to be smart – in fact, it’s sexy to be smart!

It’s Danica McKellar’s mission to be this role model, and demonstrate on a large scale that “math doesn’t suck.” In this fun and accessible guide, McKellar – dubbed a “math superstar” by The New York Times – gives girls and their parents the tools they need to master the math concepts that confuse middle-schoolers most, including fractions, percentages, pre-algebra, and more. The book features hip, real-world examples, step-by-step instruction, and engaging stories of Danica’s own childhood struggles in math (and stardom). In addition, borrowing from the style of today’s teen magazines, it even includes a Math Horoscope section, Math Personality Quizzes, and Real-Life Testimonials – ultimately revealing why math is easier and cooler than readers think.

St. Peter’s Bones: How the Relics of the First Pope Were Lost and Found . . . and Then Lost and Found Again by Thomas Craughwell

In this fascinating account of the search for the remains of the world’s first pope, none other than Peter, the chief apostle of Jesus, Thomas J. Craughwell takes us on one of the most exciting archaeological finds of the twentieth century. ST Peter's bones
In 1448 a team of architects and engineers brought Pope Nicholas V unhappy news: the 1,100-year-old Basilica of St. Peter suffered from so many structural defects that it was beyond repair. The only solution was to pull down the old church–one of the most venerable churches in all of Christiandom–and erect a new basilica on the site. Incredibly, one of the tombs the builders paved over was the resting place of St. Peter.
Then in 1939, while reconstructing the grottoes below St. Peter’s Basilica, a workman’s shovel struck not dirt or rock but open air. After inspecting what could be seen through the hole they’d made in the mausoleum’s roof, Pope Pius XII secretly authorized a full-scale excavation. What lay beneath? The answer and the adventure await. In this riveting history, facts, traditions, and faith collide to reveal the investigation, betrayals, and mystery behind St. Peter’s burial place.

Pre-order a copy by calling the store: 203-730-2973……or order from the online store on the webpage- 20% off and $.99 delivery

 

 

Nurturing Healing Love

Nurturing Healing LoveBy Newtown author Scarlett Lewis & New York Times-bestselling author Natasha Stoynoff

On December 14, 2012, Scarlett Lewis experienced something that no parent should ever have to endure: she lost her son Jesse in an act of unimaginable violence. The day started just like any other, but when a gunman opened fire at Sandy Hook Elementary School, Scarlett’s life changed forever. However, this isn’t a story about a massacre. It’s a story about love and survival. It’s about how to face the impossible, how to find courage when you think you have none, and how to choose love instead of anger, fear, or hatred. Following Jesse’s death, Scarlett went on an unexpected journey, inspired by a simple three-word message he had scrawled on their kitchen chalkboard shortly before he died: Norurting Helin Love (Nurturing Healing Love). It was as if he knew just what his family would need in order to go on after this horrible tragedy. Bolstered by his words, Scarlett took her first step toward a new life. And with each step, it became clearer how true Jesse’s message was. She learned that love was indeed the essential element necessary to move forward and that taking the path of love is a choice. We can live in anger and resentment, or we can choose love and forgiveness. With her decision made, she found some peace and began to believe that choosing love was the key to creating a healthy, safe, and happy world. She began the Jesse Lewis Choose Love Foundation to develop programs to teach children about the power each of us has to change our thoughts and choose a life without fear and hate. Nurturing Healing Love is Scarlett’s story of how choosing love is changing her life – and how it could change our world.

Report From the Interior

Report from the InteriorBy Paul Auster

“In the beginning, everything was alive. The smallest objects were endowed with beating hearts…”

Having recalled his life through the story of his physical self in Winter Journal, internationally acclaimed novelist Paul Auster now remembers the experience of his development from within through the encounters of his interior self with the outer world in Report from the Interior.

From his baby’s-eye view of the man in the moon, to his childhood worship of the movie cowboy Buster Crabbe, to the composition of his first poem at the age of nine, to his dawning awareness of the injustices of American life, Report from the Interior charts Auster’s moral, political, and intellectual journey as he inches his way toward adulthood through the postwar 1950s and into the turbulent 1960s.

Auster evokes the sounds, smells, and tactile sensations that marked his early life – and the many images that came at him, including moving images (he adored cartoons, he was in love with films), until, at its unique climax, the book breaks away from prose into pure imagery: The final section of Report from the Interior recapitulates the first three parts, told in an album of pictures. At once a story of the times – which makes it everyone’s story – and the story of the emerging consciousness of a renowned literary artist, this four-part work answers the challenge of autobiography in ways rarely, if ever, seen before.

Marcie Cuff felts with families on Thursday May 8th at 7:30p.m.

We are so happy to spend a family-friendly evening with Marcie Cuff, author of “This Book Was a Tree” on Thursday May 8th at 7:30. From Marcie: “I’ve been imagining my event at Byrd’s to be a sort of book signing and “crafty night out” for grownups.” We think that sounds great!!!

From the author:

This Book Was a Tree is sort of a self-help book for adults on how to slow down and reconnect with the outside world. Though the writing is fun and quirky, and the projects within it are simple and green, it covers the science behind formidable local and global environmental issues. Its audience is the practical, educated middle-aged person making responsible purchases and favoring ethical products. Although the projects within it are very family-friendly and collaborative, but the text is not written as a children’s book.”This book was a tree

About the book:

At no time in human history have we been more disconnected with what lies outside our front doors. Within just a century, our relationship with our surroundings has transformed from one of exploration to one of disassociation. In This Book Was a Tree, science teacher Marcie Cuff issues a call for a new era of pioneers–not leathery, backwoods deerskin-wearing salt pork and hominy pioneers, but strong-minded, clever, crafty, mudpie-making, fort-building individuals committed to examining the natural world and deciphering nature’s perplexing puzzles.
Within each chapter, readers will discover a principle for reconnecting with the natural world around them, from learning to be still to discovering the importance of giving back. With a mix of science and hands-on crafts and activities, readers will be encouraged to brainstorm, imagine, and understand the world as inventive scientists–to touch, collect, document, sketch, decode, analyze, experiment, unravel, interpret, compare, and reflect. (April 1 release)

About the author:

Marcie Cuff has an academic background in studio art, evolutionary biology and animal behavior, and an MA in Secondary Science teaching. Now a nature columnist for a regional newspaper, The Hudson Independent, she has written professionally for most of her life, and runs Mossy, a blog highlighting innovative family projects, hands-on parenting commentary, and related photography, and listed as one of Babble’s top 50 Mom Craft Blogs of 2011. She works as a garden coordinator at a local elementary school, and organizes and maintains a community-based vegetable garden.

Bless the Dogs

 

Bless the DogsBy The Monks of New Skete

This treasure of a book from bestselling authors The Monks of New Skete, features meditations from their book I & Dog, along with new meditations and stunning new photography. It’s a delightful celebration in words and pictures of the special relationship we have with our dogs.

With beautiful 4-color photography and meditations from the Monks, the message is simple, subtle, and sublime – resonating on every page, in every contemplative passage, and every soul-filling image.

Enjoy every moment, page by page, and appreciate anew the marvelous, mysterious, heeling and hope-filled partnership between dogs and humans as it shines in Bless the Dogs.

The lessons are delivered with a gentle touch; “Dogs make us believe we can actually be as they see us.” But they also do not hesitate to show just how important the possibility is: “Listen carefully to your life and you’ll find that good companionship with a dog touches the broader issues of our relationship with all creation and the Creator.”

For All of Us, One Today

For All of UsBy Richard Blanco, 2013 inaugural poet

For All of Us, One Today is a fluid, poetic account of Richard Blanco’s life-changing experiences as the inaugural poet in 2013. In this brief and evocative narrative, he shares the story of the call from the White House committee and all the exhilaration and upheaval of the days that followed. For the first time, he reveals the inspiration and challenges – including his experiences as a Latino immigrant and gay man – behind the creation of the inaugural poem, One Today, as well as two other poems commissioned for the occasion (Mother Country and What We Know of Country), published here for the first time ever, alongside translations of all three of those poems into his native Spanish. Finally, Blanco reflects on his new role as a public voice, his vision for poetry’s place in our nation’s consciousness, his spiritual embrace of Americans everywhere, and his renewed understanding of what it means to be an American as a result of the inauguration. Like the inaugural poem itself, For All of Us, One Today speaks to what makes this country and its people great, marking a historic moment of hope and promise in our evolving American landscape.

Princesesses Behaving Badly

Princesses Behaving BadlyPrincesses Behaving Badly: Real Stories from History Without the Fairy-Tale Endings

By Linda Rodriguez McRobbie

You think you know her story. You’ve read the Brothers Grimm, you’ve watched the Disney cartoons, you cheered as these virtuous women lived happily ever after. But the lives of real princesses couldn’t be more different. Sure, many were graceful and benevolent leaders – but just as many were ruthless in their quest for power, and all of them had skeletons rattling in their royal closets. Princess Stephanie von Hohenlohe was a Nazi spy. Empress Elizabeth of the Austro-Hungarian empire slept wearing a mask of raw veal. Princess Olga of Kiev murdered thousands of men, and Princess Rani Lakshmibai waged war on the battlefield, charging into combat with her toddler son strapped to her back. Princesses Behaving Badly offers minibiographies of all these princesses and dozens more. It’s a fascinating read for history buffs, feminists, and anyone seeking a different kind of bedtime story.

The Brothers

BrothersThe Brothers: John Foster Dulles, Allen Dulles, and Their Secret World War

By Stephen Kinzer

A joint biography of John Foster Dulles and Allen Dulles, who led the United States into an unseen war that decisively shaped today’s world

During the 1950s, when the Cold War was at its peak, two immensely powerful brothers led the United States into a series of foreign adventures whose effects are still shaking the world.

John Foster Dulles was secretary of state while his brother, Allen Dulles, was director of the Central Intelligence Agency. In this book, Stephen Kinzer places their extraordinary lives against the background of American culture and history. He uses the framework of biography to ask: Why does the United States behave as it does in the world?

The Brothers explores hidden forces that shape the national psyche, from religious piety to Western movies – many of which are about a noble gunman who cleans up a lawless town by killing bad guys. This is how the Dulles brothers saw themselves, and how many Americans still see their country’s role in the world.

Propelled by a quintessentially American set of fears and delusions, the Dulles brothers launched violent campaigns against foreign leaders they saw as threats to the United States. These campaigns helped push countries from Guatemala to the Congo into long spirals of violence, led the United States into the Vietnam War, and laid the foundation for decades of hostility between the United States and countries from Cuba to Iran.

The story of the Dulles brothers is the story of America. It illuminates and helps explain the modern history of the United States and the world.

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