Artist living near Hayward. Works in acrylics, watercolors and digitally. Known in Hayward for their chicken paintings.
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Five stars: Murder and Mamon by Mia P. Manansala and Danice Cabanela (Narrator) (2023) is the fourth book in the Tita Rosie's Kitchen mystery series. The Calendar Crew is celebrating the opening of a new business venture: a laundromat. Unfortunately the business is vandelized and Ninang April’s niece is found murdered inside.
Five stars: Prologue to Murder by Lauren Elliott and Karen White (Narrator) (2019) is the second book in the Beyond the Page Bookstore mystery series. When the head librarian goes missing and is later found dead in an underground utility vault, Miss Newsy accuses Addie Greyborne. Frustrated by the libelous gossip, she teams up with the town's new medical examiner to solve the case.
Five stars: How Spider Saved Halloween by Robert Kraus (1973) was published the year I was born. I think I had it read to me way back when. I came across it again via social media — Instagram, I think. As it was coming up on Halloween, I though it was a good time to read or re-read it.
Five stars: Under the Whispering Door by T.J. Klune (2021) is a slow, quiet, melancholy and sometimes funny look at life and death. Wallace dies unexpectedly, the day after firing a woman who desperately needs her job. Wallace, though, now has to contend with attending his own funeral and being stuck in a teashop with a reaper (Mei), a ferryman (Hugo), a ghost (Nelson), and a dog (Apollo).
Five stars: Yellow Kayak by Nina Laden and Melissa Castrillón (Illustrator) (2018) is the tale of a child, their friend and a trip in a kayak through calm and rough waters. The story is conveyed through minimalist poetry and luscious illustrations by an English-Colombian artist.
Five stars: Killer Run by Lynn Cahoon and Susan Boyce (Narrator) (2015) is the fifth book in the Tourist Trap mystery series. Jill Gardener has been pressured into sponsoring a 5K race through her seaside town. When her aunt's boyfriend collapses from heat exhaustion, he stumbles over the body of the race's organizer.
“The Galloping Gourmet was a telly programme that Peter watched with his granny.” The Secret Starling by Judith Eagle (2019).
An example of a line changed in the US edition I read a couple years ago. I hate how children’s books are Americanized/Americanised.
Five stars: Lo and Behold by Wendy Mass and Gabi Mendez (Illustrator) (2023) is about friendships made through augmented and virtual reality. Addie and her father have moved temporarily to a college town so he can help some computer science students with their grants.
Five stars: A Scatter of Light by Malinda Lo (2022) (October 2023) is set in the North Bay in the year that same sex marriage was approved. Aria Tang has found herself at her grandmother's place after topless photographs of her were posted on social media.
Five stars: The Mysteries by Bill Watterson and John Kascht (Illustrator) (2023) is a graphic novel or picture book for adults. At first glance it's a dark fantasy about an unknown threat. At second glance it's a parable for man's ongoing abuse of the world and the species' collective arrogance at the cost of everything precious.
Five stars: A Flock and a Fluke by Hillary Avis and Kitty Hendrix (Narrator) (2020) is the second book in the Clucks and Clues mystery series. With Easter approaching, the town of Honeytree is hosting its first ever Egg Scramble, a treasure hunt for adults. In the process of tracking down the most valuable of the eggs, Leona finds the body of the pastor's wife.
I am reading Basic Color Terms: Their Universality and Evolution
Paul Kay and Brent Berlin (1969). Their observation is that when a language has a limited number of color words, which colors are given priority is a fairly universal order of operations beginning with black and white, moving on to red and spreading out from there.
They have samples of words from dozens of languages and still manage to be biased by their western colonizer heritage. In the introduction where they explain their method they first equate number of basic color words with how evolved a given culture's society is. They later make a similar statement but replace society with level of industrialization.
Further more they exclude "borrowed" words from languages if those languages happen to be ones spoken by a colonized person. There is no similar discussion of borrowed words showing up in a colonizer language (English or Spanish for example).
I am as close to flapping as I ever get. I just heard about the #ozathon24 read along for next year. I am super excited. But this also means I will be doing lots of Oz inspired chicken art next year. And not just Bill fan art (Bill is best chicken) but the regular cast as chickens. Will I chickenify the Gump too? @bookstodon
Five stars: Overdue or Die by Allison Brook and Mia Gaskin (Narrator) (2023) is the seventh book in the Haunted Library mystery series. Carrie Singleton should be planning her wedding, or at least the engagement party, but she's preoccupied with the death of Martha Mallory, the woman who ran the local art gallery.
Five stars: Chickenology: The Ultimate Encyclopedia by Barbara Sandri et al. (2021) at only eighty pages and heavily illustrated, is however, one of the most informative and entertaining books about chickens I've ever read.
Five stars: Musseled Out by Barbara Ross and Dara Rosenberg (Narrator) (2015) is the third book in the Maine Clambake mystery series. Time has run out on the season and Julia Snowden has to decide whether she's going to stay or go back to her job in New York. She's distracted by the discovery of a drowned man trapped under a free floating lobster boat.
Five stars: Danger at the Iron Dragon by Carolyn Keene (2021) is the 22nd book in the Nancy Drew Diaries series. On the way home Nancy is mugged but she's rescued by Carly, a student of jiu-jitsu at the Iron Dragon. On her father's encouragement, Nancy and her two BFFs, Bess and George sign up for lessons.
Five stars: My Mother Was a Nanny by Laura James (2023) is inspired by the author's childhood in Brooklyn New York.
Five stars: DeadEndia: The Watcher's Test by Hamish Steele (2018) is the first half of a duology about demons, angels, and an amusement park. DeadEndia was a pilot, then a webcomic, then a graphic novel, and a brief series on Netflix (as Dead End: Paranormal Park). Each version is different but they share some key similarities: Norma, Barney, Pugsley, and Courtney.
Five stars: Sunshine by Jarrett J. Krosoczka (2023) is the follow up to Hey, Kiddo (2020). This one covers a week in September where Jarrett volunteered at Camp Sunshine, a camp for children with cancer, and their families.
Five stars: The Masterful Cat Is Depressed Again Today, Volume 3 by Hitsuji Yamada (2020) deals with separation anxiety. Specifically, Saku's going on the biennial company retreat, a trip she skipped when Yukichi was a kitten.
Five stars: Pink, Blue, and You!: Questions for Kids about Gender Stereotypes by Elise Gravel with Mykaell Blais (Contributor) (2022) is a picture book about gender and sexual orientation for children. It's straight forward and easy to understand and is colorfully illustrated.
Five stars: Teen Titans: Robin by Kami Garcia and Gabriel Picolo (Illustrator) (2023) is the fourth graphic novel in the series. Dick Grayson has caught up with Damian and the others as they hide out and train on an island in Georgia.
Five stars: The Night Is Short, Walk on Girl by Tomihiko Morimi and Emily Balistrieri (Translator) (2006) is the story of two college students finding and falling in love with each other through a year's worth of odd coincidences and supernatural shenanigans.
Five stars: Cold Brew Corpse by Tara Lush and Kae Marie Denino (Narrator) (2021) is the second book in the Coffee Lover's mystery series. Lana Lewis is drawn back into her love of journalism when the woman who runs the yoga studio, Dante's Inferno.
Five stars: Witch Upon a Star by Angela M. Sanders and Francesca Townes (Narrator) (2023) is the fourth book in the Witch Way Librarian mystery series. Josie's sister, Jean, is visiting Wilfred. She's here to take part in a Life Coach workshop but Josie (and her mother) have reservations about this workshop. And then the bodies star appearing: one in the cafe and one at the conference center.
Five stars: We Are Going to Be Pals! by Mark Teague (2023) is a book about symbiotic relationships. Specifically it's about an egret and its long winded introduction of itself to the rhinoceros it wants to hang out with.
Four stars: The Marvellers by Dhonielle Clayton and Khadijah Khatib (Illustrator) (2022) is the start of The Conjureverse middle grade fantasy series set in an alternate Earth where magic is real and segregated. Ella Durand is the first conjurer to attend the Arcanum Training Institute. Although she's been welcomed to join, she faces prejudice from nearly everyone at the school. She also finds herself in the middle of a mystery that threatens the school.
Five stars: Death by Iced Coffee by Alex Erickson and Melissa Moran (Narrator) is the eleventh book in the Bookstore Cafe mystery series. Krissy Hancock takes part in Pine Hills's first ever marathon on a scorcher of a day. As the race is reaching the hills one of the race's organizers is found murdered just off the route.
Five stars: Elf Dog and Owl Head by M.T. Anderson and Junyi Wu (Illustrator) (2023) begins with a royal hunt in the Kingdom Under the Mountain from the perspective of a young elfhound. When the prey ends up outside the mountain and the hunt follows, the elfhound is separated and befuddled by a modern human mountain town.
Five stars: Off the Map by Trish Doller (2023) is the third book in the Beck Sisters romance series. Anna and Keane are getting married in Tralee, Ireland. Carla Black, her BFF from Ft. Lauderdale, is one of her bridesmaids. Keane's brother, Eamon is supposed to drive her from Dublin to the wedding. Except the two keep getting distracted by their own chemistry.
Five stars: The Masterful Cat Is Depressed Again, Today, Volume 2 by Hitsuji Yamada (2019) continues to explore the relationship between Saku and her oversized cat, Yukichi. The two also spend more time with Saku's boss's niece, Yume-chan.
Four stars: The Perfect Staging for Murder by Kathleen Bridge and Vanessa Daniels (Narrator) (2023) is the seventh book in the Hamptons Home and Gardens mystery series. Meg Barrett is still helping with set dressing for the final season of Mr. and Mrs. Winslow. She's now dating the head writer, Patrick.
Five stars: Steeped in Malice by Vicki Delany and Shaina Summerville (Narrator) (2023) is the fourth book in the Tea by the Sea mystery series. Lily Roberts is in need of new teacups for the tea room. She prefers antiques and finds a wonderful children's set featuring Beatrix Potter characters. But the very next day she has regrets when two different sisters and then her ex-boyfriend all want what was also in the basket.
Five stars: Girl Taking Over: A Lois Lane Story by Sarah Kuhn and Arielle Jovellanos (Illustrator) (2023) is a stand alone YA graphic novel that looks at a young Lois Lane, just starting out in her career as a journalist. It also imagines a Lois who is Japanese-American and has been driven to be the best to rise above racism she grew up around.
Five stars: The Bawk-ness Monster by Natalie Riess and Sara Goetter (2023) is a graphic novel about a group of friends trying to say thank you to a cryptid who saved one of them from drowning. In the end of the day they end up having to save the cryptid and a bunch of others too.
Five stars: Frank and Bert by Chris Naylor-Ballesteros is a picture book about friendship and a love of hide-and-seek. Frank is a fox and Bert is a bear. Although they love to play together, they aren't evenly matched.
Five stars: Murder is a Piece of Cake by Valerie Burns and Jasmin Walker (Narrator) (2023) is the second book in the Baker Street mysteries. A second bakery is opening soon and it's owned by the sheriff's estranged husband. But before Maddy can even focus on the competition, the man is murdered, his body left in her bakery!