Wednesday, October 30, 2013

WWII: What to do when trick or treating is cancelled!

By the time October 31, 1942 rolled around, the country was going full speed ahead producing wartime materials; sugar was rationed, the blackout was in effect and many communities decided to simply cancel Halloween trick or treating.  For some kids, Halloween meant too much free time to get into trouble with so many parents not home because of working and juvenile delinquency was already on the rise.  For other kids, it meant the usual pranks, like soaping windows, just weren't much fun to play on already exhausted adults.  For all kids, treats were in short supply and no one had anything to give away.

To counter this and not disappoint kids, parents, schools and communities decided to have Halloween parties, in order to have


First, invitations would be send out:
Next, find some Halloween decorations and party suggestions from your favorite magazine or comic book:

Used with permission of Jeff Pepper at 2719 Hyperion
Then, buy or make some decorations:

Carve the Pumpkin:

Choose a costume:

At the party, serve some food:

Then, play some games like Apple Snap or Bobbing for Apples:

Stunt and Fortune Telling games were also popular:

Or make your own Fortune Teller (you can find instructions for making this great Halloween Fortune Teller thanks to Shannon's instructions at The Diary of a Nouveau Soccer Mom)

Most of all, have some fun


Monday, October 28, 2013

The War Within These Walls by Aline Sax, illustrated by Caryl Strzelecki, translated by Laura Watkinson

The War Within These Walls is a slim graphic novel based on a real event.  Narrated by teenage protagonist Misha, it follows the fate of his Jewish family living in Poland at the start of WWII.  Little by little the Nazis made life untenable for the Jews in Poland.  Eventually, the Jews were all moved into various ghettos around Poland, Misha and his family found themselves living the the Warsaw Ghetto.

With little food and people dying of starvation every day, Misha begins to sneak out of the ghetto at night to find food to smuggle in for his family.  Soon, his younger sister Janina starts following him and when he insists she stop when the Nazis were starting to hang smugglers, she leaves the ghetto on her own and doesn't return.

Then, the Nazis announced that the Jews were going to be resettled in the east to have a better life.  People thought that might be a good thing until the freight trains with only cattle cars arrive.  As the Nazis swarmed the ghetto to find anyone who tried to hide, Misha realizes that they were going east to be killed not resettled.

Hiding from the Nazis during the raid, Misha meets a young man named Mordechai Anielewicz and his life as a Jewish resistance fighter begins.  As he meets other Jews in the resistance, Misha feels a sense of renewed hope.  The Nazis planned to liquidate the ghetto on April 19, 1942, a date that coincided with the Jewish holiday of Passover.  But they were never expecting to meet resistance, but Misha, Mordechai and the other Jews for back, culminating in what we know call the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.

Using sparse test accompanied by stark black and white pencil, pen and ink illustrations against a black or white pages, The War Within These Walls is one of the most powerful books I have read about the Holocaust and the Warsaw Ghetto.  The slim design of the physical really imparts the sense of how increasing narrow the Nazis made world for the Jews in Europe, while the height reminded me of how Misha saw the freedom of birds who had the freedom could just fly away from the ghetto.

And it is a grim novel, full of despair, but how could it not be.  One of the most poignant parts of the story was the disappearance of Janina after she runs away from the ghetto.  I could really feel Misha's agony not knowing what happened to her - did she survive or was she captured and killed?   Like so many many Jewish families caught in the the Nazi reign of terror who never saw their loved ones again and never learned what became of them.

By the end, I could really see how Misha and the other resistance workers saw hope in what they were doing even though it proably would spell certain death for them.

This is a heart breaking novel in its very simplicity, but not to be missed for mature teen readers interested in the Holocaust and WWII.

This book is recommended for mature readers age 14+
This book was purchased for my personal library

At the end of The War Within These Walls, there is a short biography about Mordechai Anielewicz, who was indeed the leader of the resistance within the Warsaw Ghetto.  He was born in 1919 and killed on May 8, 1943 during the Uprising.  He was only around 24 uears old at the time.

You can also read more about this hero of the Holocaust HERE

This is book 11 of my 2013 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge hosted by Historical Tapestry
This is book 6 of my 2013 European Reading Challenge hosted by Rose City Reader

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

The Messenger Bird by Ruth Eastham

It's bonfire and housewarming night for Nathan Vane, 12, and his family.  All the excitement and people accounts for why he didn't notice the two men in suits until his dad did and then, before Nat knew it, they had arrested his dad.  But just before that, Nat's dad gives him a very cryptic message to follow Lily's trail. But who is Lily and where was her trail?  He also tells Nat not to trust anyone, or tell them anything about the mystery he needs to solve now for his dad, not even his mother - the less they know, the safer they are.

Leon Vane has reason to worry about his family.  Turns out, Nat's dad is accused of being a traitor/terrorist for breaking the Official Secrets Act.  It is believed that he had sold top-secret information to the enemy that ultimately caused the death of British soldiers, information that he was able to get because of his job at the Ministry of Defense.  This is serious stuff, but he seems to feel Nat is capable of figuring out the clues that will ultimately prove his  innocence.  Luckily, Nat and his dad always shared a love of puzzles, codes, and riddles.

Unable to imagine his dad doing such a thing, Nat must first figure out the mystery of who Lily is.  Apparently, she was someone who had lived in their house long ago.  But Auntie Hilda had always lived in the house.  Indeed, it was so full of all her old WWII memorabilia, it felt like a museum.  And didn't dad always say how happy he was whenever he was visiting Auntie Hilda as a boy?  So how did Lily fit into things now?

Following his dad's advice to always think literally and laterally when solving a puzzle, Nat does figure out who Lily is.  And, Lily did indeed live in the house - billeted there in 1940.  But when Nat finds a note written by her it only leads to yet another mystery that need to be solved.

And it doesn't take long for Nat's best friends, Josh and Sasha, to realize that something is up with him and Nat finally takes them into confidence.  With their help, the three kids begin following a trail of clues and coded messages, all of which leads them to Bletchley Park and the World War II code-breakers and one codebreaker in particular - Lily Kenley.

But how does the work of a wartime codebreaker connect to the trouble Nat's father is in?

Eastham has nicely incorporated Britain's wartime past, namely Bletchley Park, the Enigma Machine and the bombing of Coventry Cathedral, with the present to produced a fast paced, exciting mystery, ideal for young readers.

What a fun book this was to read, the more so, I suppose, because I have always loved codes, puzzles and riddles myself.  I loved the visits the kids made to Bletchley Park and reading about how they solved the mystery, although at times, finding a clue seemed a bit too easy.  But that certainly didn't diminish my enjoyment of the story one bit.

All in all, The Messenger Bird was a compelling, skillfully done mystery with wonderful historical bits.  And best of all, the ending was a complete surprise.

This book is recomended for readers age 12+
This book was purchased for my personal library

Bletchley Park 
Bletchley Park was originally slated for demolition, but was saved and it in the process of being rehabilitated.  You can read about Bletchley Park and the WW2 Codebreakers HERE

The bombing of Coventry and the Cathedral, called Operation Moonlight Sonata by the Nazis, happened on the night of November 14-15, 1940.  It was carried out by over 400 Luftwaffe planes and lasted around 13 hours.  Coventry was bombed to destroy the factories there and to break the morale of the people.  You can read more about the bombing of Coventry HERE

Coventry Cathedral after the bombing

Monday, October 21, 2013

World War II Spies: An Interactive History Adventure by Michael Burgan

So far, I have reviewed two of these interactive adventures that are designed to give the reader a sense of what life was life during World War II.  The first book was World War II: On the Home Front by Martin Gitlin, in which you could choose three different stories to follow: a woman living in NYC, a 12 year old boy in San Francisco or a wounded African American soldier from the segregated south.  The second book, World War II Pilots also gives the readers a choice of three stories to follow: a British pilot in the RAF, an American pilot fighting in the Pacific, or a Tuskegee Airman.

Now comes yet another You Choose WWII adventure, World War II Spies.  The basic format is the same as the other two books.  It begins with a short introduction to why the war began, and begins to introduce the topic of the book, in this case it is spying and military intelligence gathering.  Then you are give three stories to follow: a college student who joins the resistance in Denmark after that country is invaded by Hitler in April 1940, an agent working for the German Abwehr (the Abwehr was the German intelligence organization), or an American OSS agent (Office of Strategic Services, also a wartime intelligence gathering organization).

As each story unfolds, you are asked to make more choices about what you want to do.  For example, the first choice the college student in Denmark must make is whether to stay in Copenhagen so he can also look after his family while serving the resistance or go to London and train to be an agent.  You follow each choice to its end, then you can go back, begin again and make different choices.  In all, you get 3 stories, 38 choices and 22 endings.  Trust me, it is not a complicated as it sounds.

I have really gotten to like these You Choose adventures.  Throughout your adventure, there are maps and lots of photographs relevant to the path of each adventure you are following.  And there is lots of back matter for anyone who wants to find out more.  And further suggestions for setting up your own wartime spy adventure.

I was particularly interested in World War II Spies because so many of the books I have written about here include spying and espionage tactics that were such a part of WWII in all its forms.

Like the other interactive history books, World War II Spies, will have lots of appeal to any reader interested in the war.  It would also be a wonderful supplement to a classroom or home schooling situation studying the war.

I should probably tell you that there are about 30 You Choose books from Capstone Press covering all periods in history, not just World War II.  I mention it in case you think the format is appealing, but are interested in another historical period.

This book is recommended for readers age 9+
This book was purchased for my personal library

A very informative leaflet about British spying and espionage in WWII can be found HERE courtesy of Craig Simpson, who writes exciting WWII books for kids age 12+

Nonfiction Monday is hosted this week by Abby the Librarian

Friday, October 18, 2013

The Extra by Kathryn Lasky

Like all the Gypsies living in Vienna in early autumn 1940, Lilian "Lilo" Friwald, 15, had been required to register at the police station along with her father, a master clockmaker and mother, a talented lace maker.  But now, as kids in Lilo's school began to disappear, she remembered the rumors about Gypsies being rounded up in eastern Austria and sent to internment camps.  But although the Friwalds were also of Gypsy descent, they were settled Sinti, not like the Roma who were more nomadic.

But not long after the SS show up at their door,  the Friwalds find themselves in Buchenwald Concentration Camp, where Lilo and her mother are separated from her father.  

In Buchenwald, Lilo meets Django, already a veteran of three other camps.  She quickly learns he is also a master at "organizing" - obtaining hard to come by things like food, clothes, and even information about Lilo's father.  But Buchenwald is only a short stay and soon Lilo, her mother and Django are sent to Maxglan Concentration Camp, a work camp near Salzburg, Austria.

Shortly after arriving at Maxglan, the prisoners are called out for what they think is just another endless roll call.  What a surprise for Lilo when she saw Hitler's favorite filmmaker, Leni Riefenstal, walking among them, tall and elegant.  Riefenstahl was looking for Gypsies who looked Spanish to act as extras for her new movie Tiefland. Lilo, her mother and Django were all among the chosen.

Would this prove to be a lucky opportunity for survival until the war ended for the three new movie extras?

I was very excited when I read about this book and was lucky enough to receive an ARC of it at this years BEA.  The story is based on a true experience and to my knowledge, an aspect of WWII that has never been explored in MG/YA literature.

The basic story is pretty good.  Kathryn Lasky has presented a new and interesting view of the plight of the Romani under the Nazis through Lilo, her family and the other prisoners.  She doesn't sugar coat their experience, and there are parts that are difficult to read because they really make you feel the capriciousness of life as a victim of the Nazis.  On the other hand, through Lilo's experiences, Lasky does include people who were willing to risk their lives to help whenever they could.

Lilo was a great female character.  The reader can really see her development from a naive, scared schoolgirl to a young woman who courageously decides that the Nazis were not going to decide her fate, regardless the outcome.  AND she doesn't need Django to help her carry out her decision.  

I also liked Lasky's portrayal of Riefenstahl.  Riefenstahl was a very self-centered person and a demanding, perfectionist filmmaker, and that really came out in The Extra.  She did, indeed, use Romani from Maxglan in Tiefland, and for years afterward, claimed she did not know the fate of the extras after their part in the film was completed.  Riefenstahl certainly contributed many excellent techniques to the art of filmmaking, but I personally never believed her denials about anything having to do with the Nazis.  Still, there was ambiguity surrounding the extras in the film and that comes out in the novel as well.

What bothered me:
This part is really hard to write because I have such respect for Kathryn Lasky as a writer.  What didn't work for me was the time changes Lasky took for the sake of storytelling.  Now, I have read lots of books where this is done.  But usually the time change is not so drastic.  Throughout The Extra, Django talks about extermination camps and people being sent east to be killed in them.  The Extra begins in autumn 1940 and by June 1941, filming for the Romani was pretty much wrapping up.  During this whole time, there were no extermination camps.  The first extermination camp was Chelmo and it wasn't operational until December 1941.  Additionally, as a group, Romani were not sent to extermination camps until December 1942 when they were sent to Auschwitz.  Using work camp would have been much more authentic and they were just a scary.  Work camps had been around since 1933 when Dachau was opened and the idea behind them was to simply work prisoners to death and replace them with new ones, and people did know about this practice in 1940.

I wouldn't not recommend this book because of the time change, but I would hope that readers will take the time to read the Author's Note at the back of the book.

This book is recommended for readers age 12+
This book was an ARC received at BEA 2013

You can read more about the Nazi treatment of Gypsies at the Shoah Resource Center

Lilo's character is based on two young woman that were film extras (and who were the only members of their families to survive the Nazis).  Anna Blach was Riefenstahl's horse riding stand-in.  However, Lilo was modeled more on an extra named Rosa Winter.  You can read more about Anna Winter HERE.

Tiefland wasn't completed until 1954.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Ronnie's War by Bernard Ashley

Told in four vignettes, Ronnie's War is about the wartime experiences of Ronnie Warren, whose father is off fighting for Britain. It begins on the first day of the war and ends on VE day.

The first vignette, Blitzkrieg,  begins on the first day of the Blitz and Ronnie, 11, decides that today is the day he will not go with his mum to visit boring Auntie Edna.  Instead, he just rambles through the day, but when the Luftwaffe arrives along with fear, Ronnie risks everything to get to his mum and make sure she is OK.  When he gets to his auntie's, the house is on the verge of collapsing and no one will let him near it.  Still, Ronnie manages to get himself inside and finds his mum and auntie under a piles of debris.  But his mum is still alive, and Ronnie manages to get her out of a slim opening with the help of a fireman just before the whole thing collapses.

The second vignette, Top Bunk Boy, begins after Ronnie's mum has recovered from her injuries and begun doing war work.  Ronnie finds himself evacuated to Lancashire and billeted with a woman whose only interest is her son, Eric, an stutterer who runs hot and cold.  Neither are very welcoming and Ronnie finds the same reception at the new school he begins attending.  In fact, on his very first day, he receives three hard raps on his knuckles with a ruler from his sadistic new teacher for not adding 'Sir' when he correctly answered a question.

Things were any easier for Ronnie at home, but eventually he proves himself to be a stand-up boy to the other kids and also manages to settle a couple of scores that weren't even his to settle.  And he begins to notice girls, well, one girl in particular.  But when his mum receives news that his dad is missing in action, presumed dead, Ronnie finds himself back in London until July 1944, when the *doodlebugs start arriving.

In vignette three, The American Captain, Ronnie, now 14 and in his last year of school, and his mum are off to Essex to stay with his Uncle Len and his father, whom Ronnie calls Uncle Will.  His mum gets a job at an American bomber base, and the two settle in.  But Uncle Will is a cantankerous old man, with lots of prejudices.  When Ronnie says that he had met a girl named Evie in school, a girl he finds himself very attracted to, he is forbidden to see or speak to her by Uncle Will, because she is of Italian descent and he still considers them the enemy, even though the Italians had already lost the war and surrendered.

And it looks like his mum may be too attracted to the handsome American captain who conveniently brings her home every night.  But what about his dad?  Sure, there had been no word about him in four years, but Ronnie isn't about to give up hope, why is his mum?

The fourth and last vignette, Man of the House, finds Ronnie and his mum back in their old flat in London.  Ronnie has left school, and much to his mother's disappointment, has taken a deadend job rather than an apprenticeship, so he can buy a motor bike to go visit Evie in Essex  But it is hard to celebrate VE day when there has still been no word about his dad.  Will they ever find out his fate?

In each vignette, set against the background of the war, we witness Ronnie's personal coming-of-age 'battles' as he grows from a boy to a young man.  I say battle, because Ronnie seems to be put into positions of physically fighting a little too often as a way of earning respect.  His dad had taught him how to box properly, so while he did fight, it was never dirty fighting and not his choice of resolution.  On the whole, however, Ronnie is a very engaging, personable character, as is his mum.

I have to say, I quite enjoyed Bernard Ashley's writing style.  Ronnie's War has an intimate style so that I somehow felt that Ashley was telling me Ronnie's story personally.  And by dividing the book into four vignettes, Ashley is able to give the reader not just Ronnie's story but a nice in-depth portrait of what of what life was like on the home front for many people in all its mundaness punctuated by fear and anxiety during air raids.

Ronnie's War would also get my "Most Refreshing" award simply for the wonderful relationship Ronnie and his mum have.  It was really nice to read. And, from the way Ronnie thinks about his dad, I imagine they also had the same kind of easy, comfortable relationship.

Ashley has just come out with a new WWII book, called Jack and the German Spy, which I am looking forward to reading and I expect I will be exploring much more of Ashley's writing in the near future.

Another bonus, Ronnie's War is a book that will will definitely have appeal to both boys and girls.

This book is recommended for readers age 9+
This book was purchased for my personal library

*Doodlebug was the nickname the British gave to the German V-! or Vergeltungswaffe.  Doodlebugs, also called buzz bombs, looked like airplanes, but had no pilot, instead they ere simply bombs with wings.  They were very fast, and made a distinct buzzing sound.  A V-1 flew until it were out of fuel.  Then they simple dropped from the sky and explored where they landed.  If the buzzing stopped over where you were, you were in trouble.  There was only about 10 seconds before it exploded, not really time to get away to safety.

Anatomy of a Doodlebug

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Listening for Lucca by Suzanne LaFleur

When 13 year old Siena's family moves from Brooklyn to Maine for a quieter life, they hope the move will help her 3 year old brother Lucca begin to speak again.  It isn't that he can't speak, he just stopped one day and Siena has always worried that it was her fault.

Siena also has an odd obsession - she collects abandoned things - a lost hair clip, a abandoned toy, all kinds of things that she keeps on a shelf in her room.  And she also sees things that others don't, and has some very realistic dreams.  In fact, one recurring dream takes place in a house, which turns out to be the very house her family has just moved into.  After moving in, Siena and Lucca immediately sense that the house has a haunted feeling.

Siena finds an old abandoned pen while fixing up her room with the initials SEA.  After putting in some ink, Siena tests out the pen and uncontrollably begins to write My name is Sara Elizabeth Alberdine in a completely different handwriting. 

And it doesn't take long after finding the pen for Siena to start have dreams about a boy fighting in World War II.   She soon learns that the boy is Joshua Alberdine, older brother to Sara.  Sara is rather young and pushed around by their rather mean cousin Jezzie.  When Sara catches Jezzie stealing money from her mother's purse, Jezzie takes Sara to the ocean, tells her she can not speak again if she wants her brother Joshua to be safe and come home.  She takes a key, turns it and Sara immediately stops speaking.

The pen which only writes Sara's thoughts gives Siena hope that if she can find out what happened to Sara, Joshua and Jezzie, she might be able to help her brother speak again.  But when Joshua comes home suffering from a rather serious case of PTSD, finding the answer may be harder than Siena thought.  How can she possible go back in time to reach out to Joshua?

Listening for Lucca did hold my attention throughout the novel, but in the end, I was somewhat disappointed with it.  The writing was fine, the characters were well-drawn, and for the most part the action, though a little slow, was good.  Yet, in the end, I realized I had some big problems with the story.

But for some reason, I never really got the sense place, of the Maine seacoast and the town that the family moved to, of what should be a wonderful old Victorian house, so I don't feel like I really ever situated them, not in the house, not outside the house.  Maine is such a wonderfully descriptive place that it was too bad it didn't get play a bigger part.  Nor did I get a sense of where Joshua was fighting in WWII.

Joshua came back from the war in pretty bad shape emotionally and mentally.  He basically took to his bed, a shell of the fun-loving person he had been before the war.  And while they didn't call it PTSD back then, combat stress was still recognized as a serious problem.  I am afraid Joshua's recovery was just too pat and trivialized his whole experience.  Yes, he loved his sister, but one just doesn't snap out of a serious trauma the way he did.

The ending - just too pat, too easy.

Most of Listening for Lucca was OK, so I wouldn't not recommend it.  It will, undoubtedly, have a great deal of appeal to lots of middle grade readers, especially since there is the hint of a budding romance in Siena's very near future.

This book is recommended for readers age 9+
This book was borrowed from a friend

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson

I bought Chains ages ago, but never got around to reading it.  It was actually the book that motivated me to participate in the 2013 American Revolution Reading Challenge over at War Through the Generations.  And yet, it still sat on the shelf.  So naturally, when Anna and Serena, the hosts of War Through the Generations, announced that there was going to be a Chains read-along, I jumped at the chance to sign up.  AND I AM SO GLAD I DID!  But now that I have read the book, I can't understand what took me so long.

Chains is the story of a young slave girl who yearns for freedom.  Isabel, 13, and her younger sister Ruth are quickly sold by a greedy nephew for the money they will bring after their somewhat benevolent owner, Miss Fitch, passes away.  But Miss Fitch had promised them freedom after her death and Isabel can't get that promise out of her head.

Now, as the American Revolution begins, the sisters find themselves in a Loyalist household in New York City at the mercy of a cruel mistress, Mrs. Lockton.  The Locktons, who know their bread is buttered on the side of the Loyalist and King George III, despise the Patriots who want independence from and everything they stand for.

It isn't long before Isabel meets Curzon, a slave working for the Patriots, and known for the red tricorn hat he is always seen wearing.  Curzon convinces Isabel to spy on Mr. Lockton, and report anything she hears that might be useful to the Patriots.  Isabel isn't very enthusiastic about doing this, but when she is given the devastating news that Mrs. Lockton has sold Ruth, she changes her mind.  It had just been discovered that Ruth suffers from seizures and the very ignorant, superstitious Mrs. Lockton believes that they are a sign that the devil is in Ruth.

Curson proves to be a good friend to Isabel, although she has very mixed feelings about him, the war between the Patriots and the Loyalists and which side would be most beneficial to her in terms of getting her freedom.

As the war heats up, so does Isabel's determination to find her sister and, as she is told by an elderly slave known as Grandfather, to find the way to cross her own River Jordan* to freedom.

Chains is written in the first person, so we always know exactly what is going on in Isabel's mind, how she perceives everything around her and, most poignantly, how she feels about the things that happen to her.  But by spying on Mr. Lockton and his friends, we are also given a certain amount of insight into the Loyalist side of things.

Isabel is a very strong willed girl and Mrs. Lockton knows it and is determined to break that will and so she is constantly trying to tighten the chains of slavery that bind Isabel.  Yet, it takes a while for the realization that Mrs. Lockton cannot chain her soul to really sink in to Isabel's consciousness, even though all her actions had always already proven it to be true.  Her strength in the face of Mrs. Lockton, her wavering between the Patriots and the Loyalists, her determination and her innate sense of kindness despite everything all make Isabel such an exemplary protagonist.

In fact, Anderson has created a whole cast of characters in Chains who play their parts to perfection.  Set against the backdrop of New York City,  Anderson has written a brilliantly crafted novel in which the fictional walk through the historical and it is spot on.  Anderson has even turned New York into a character in its own right, by staying true to the history of the time (NB: I used to teach New York history to my 4th graders and it was my favorite thing to teach).

One of the things I really liked about Chains were the quotes used at the beginning of each chapter.  These quotes are from actual sources of the time that help situate the reader and gives the novel a real feeling of authenticity.

I don't think I could possibly recommend this book highly enough.

This book is recommended for readers aged 14+
This book was purchased for my personal library

Laurie Halse Anderson has excellent teaching resources for Chains, including a section on how to put on a colonial tea (with some really good recipes).  You can find it HERE

This is book 3 of my 2013 American Revolution Reading Challenge hosted by War Through the Generations

This is book 10 of my 2013 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge hosted by Historical Tapestry

*I was talking to a friend about Chains and she said she didn't get the River Jordan reference, which is a reference to the God's command that after the death of Moses, Joshua would lead the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt to freedom in the promised land by crossing the River Jordan.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

It's Cybils Nomination Time!

Yes, it is that time of the year again - time to nominate your favorite books for a Cybils Award.  And it is so easy to do, too.

Just head over to the Cybils website, have a little look around, then click on the nomination form.  Easy as pie!

What's eligible?  Books published in Canada or the United States (luckily some of those great UK and Australian are also published here) between October 16, 2012 and October 15, 2013. 

Nominations close on October 16, 2012, so hurry up.  You don't want your favorites left behind!