February 25 . Issue #132

Hello all and welcome to my weekly journal. A place for me to share with you my interests during the week. Just 5 points, things that caught my eye or my ear, motivated me, gave me hope and kept me going.

1. This week is all about reading and the freedom to read. Freedom To Read Week happening from February 20 – 26, go to the site to find special reading events.

Judy Blume is a children’s author who I became aware of way back in the day when my children started reading chapter books.

Blume is the author of lots of books and she writes across many genres, books for children, middle-grade books, books for teens and even adults.

Blume is also familiar with banned books, Judy Blume talks about censorship.

A conversation with author Lawrence Hill, Hill is the author of the award-winning Book of Negroes. In this conversation to celebrate Freedom to Read he is in discussion with a librarian from an Edmonton library on his favourite banned books.

He talks about three books. A diverse group, all unique, and now books that I  want to read. Another Country by James Baldwin, Foxfire by Joyce Carol Oates and Three Wishes by Deborah Ellis.

Lawrence Hill, in response to someone wanting to burn his book, wrote an essay entitled Dear Sir, I Intend to Burn Your Book.

2. My eye candy this week: Can You Bring It: Bill T. Jones and D – Man in the Waters. This is an extraordinary collage of interviews, archival material, and uniquely powerful cinematography.

A superb documentary that uses the story of this iconic dancer to illustrate the power of his artistic importance and the triumph of the human spirit.

3. My sonic explorations this week – George Frideric Handel who was born on February 23, 1685 and I spent time this week celebrating his birth in the enjoyment of his masterpieces. The Best of Handel on youtube music.

4. One project gets completed, Scratchy the Squirrel: A Time For Friends my new children’s early reader chapter book is out in the world and it’s receiving great reviews.

What’s next, another project springs to life, I am working on a new, old story. A story I started in 2010 and put aside until just recently. A story about martial arts, one that I hope children can relate to, tentatively entitled Dojo in the Woods, enjoy a free sample.

5. I am not looking to politicise my newsletter but I couldn’t help getting my interest peaked with news of War in Europe. I don’t like war or physical conflict in any way, shape or form. I am all about Peace, Love and Harmony.

During the writing of this week’s newsletter I listened to an interview with Noam Chomsky on Europe Matters – in it, he discusses many of the current problems facing humankind at this moment — including the Pandemic, Ukraine, Climate Change and USA politics.

Thanks for reading, if you think someone you know would like to read my newsletter please share it with them.

If you are looking for a great children’s book check out one of my books, including my new children’s early reader chapter book Scratchy the Squirrel: A Time for Friends.  Paperback version, on sale for a limited time.

Or one of my other children’s picture books, Samba on a Snowy Day or the Brazilian/ Portuguese version Samba em um Dia de Neve. Or you may enjoy Samba in Brazil or the Brazilian/Portuguese version Samba no Brasil.

Stay safe, stay well, stay strong and keep going.

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