Thursday, March 31, 2016

Intoducing Our New Look!

Happy Friday, and welcome to our Project Yawesome's completely re-branded blog:
Project Pangolinawesome

This is a Pangolin
Have you heard of the majestic pangolin? No? Then you've come to the right blog: Project Pangolinawesome, the blog about pangolins. Pangolins are the best animal there is. The pangolin is a mammal that looks like a dinosaur anteater and whose body is covered with plate-like overlapping scales. If you think those giant claws look scary, fear not. Those claws are only for digging up and eating insects not eviscerating humans. They also have a sticky tongue to grab ants and termites with like its hairy cousin the anteater. It probably doesn't enjoy reading or even listening to audiobooks because its eyesight and hearing are very poor and also because it doesn't have opposable thumbs so it can't hold a book or a library card or even a wallet to keep its library card in. So no need to worry about reaching Pangolins in your next marketing campaign. If you think this animal looks like a Pokemon, you would be right, because Nintendo based the Pokemon Sandshrew and the Pokemon Sandslash off of this mammalian artichoke with legs.
Sandshrew and Sandslash, the
Pangolin Pokemon

The sweet little (but sometimes giant) pangolin, native to several regions in Africa and Asia, lives in a large underground chamber, sort of like a hobbit, but with fewer waistcoats and seedcakes and furniture.
This Pangolin is Scared
It is like a hobbit in that is scares easily, but unlike a hobbit, who might put on a ring of power when it's scared, the pangolin rolls up into an adorable scaly ball after which it is quite safe from predators,  including Ringwraiths. Hobbits, pay attention, you might just learn something from the wily pangolin. Click through to learn even more about your new favorite animal, the pangolin.

We are not turning Project Yawesome into a pangolin fan blog. Were you convinced? Please let us know in the comments!

As recompense, please enjoy this review of Raymie Nightingale

BUT FIRST...if you haven't already done so, don't forget to register for CLASC's upcoming Annual Dinner And Membership Meeting! This year's meeting is Wednesday, April 13th from 6-9 pm at the beautiful Three Village Inn and will feature Richard Torrey, author and illustrator of books including My Dog Bob and Ally-saurus! Attendants will be able to participate in awesome raffles and will receive 2 professional development hours for attending. Click here to go to CLASC's registration page!  And, whether you've registered already or not, don't forget to email Kristen Todd-Wurm with your dinner selection so there's a delicious meal waiting for you! Now on to the review!

Last week I was lucky enough to get my hands on an actual copy of Kate DiCamillo’s imminent new release, Raymie Nightingale, courtesy of Candlewick Press. Once I cracked the cover of this heartfelt middle grade novel, I finished it in less than 24 hours. Let me tell you, this book will give you all of the proverbial feels. Light plot spoilers follow, but fear not, all cats will be staying put in their bags for the purposes of this review.
Raymie Clarke’s father has run away from home. Not only that; he has run away from home with a dental hygienist. Luckily, Raymie has a plan to bring him back. She will spend her summer learning how to twirl a baton like a pro so she can become Little Miss Central Florida Tire 1975 and get her picture in the paper, which her father will invariably see and which will make him come home to her.
Of course, there are several things in her way, both of whom she meets at Ida Nee’s baton twirling lessons.One of them is named Louisiana Elefante, a parentless girl who lives with her poverty-stricken grandmother. Louisiana also wants to learn to twirl a baton so she can win the contest and its $1,975 prize money, which she will use to save herself from worrying about the county home and her cat, who they couldn’t afford to feed, from the Very Friendly Animal Center. The other is named Beverly Tapinski, a girl who is already an excellent baton twirler, but who intends to sabotage the Little Miss Central Florida Tire 1975 contest. And possibly the whole world.
The bond that forms between Raymie, Louisiana and Beverly over the course of one special will change their lives in ways none of them could have predicted, and that you the reader won’t be able to predict either - at least I couldn’t. For a middle grade read, this is an usually thoughtful and introspective book. Raymie checks in on the state of her “soul” constantly - the bloom of new friendship makes it balloon out big around her, while the threat of loss makes it shrivel up so small she can hardly find it. She and her friends confront poverty, death, abuse, abandonment, loneliness, and grief. It’s not a story replete with big-smile moments, so this isn’t the book for a reader looking for a laugh. If you’re a crier like me, bring the tissues, and don’t finish it in the middle of a Penn Station Starbucks. But do read it - please do.
Kate DiCamillo drew on her own personal experience of her father leaving during her central Floridian childhood, as well as her participation in a Little Miss contest, for her inspiration. Check out her September 2015 interview with EW for more on this and her other inspirations. Raymie Nightingale will be available beginning April 12th.

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