Sunday, January 31, 2010


Yesterday, I volunteered to help at the kick-off conference for Read Across Rhode Island, one state, one book. Our title this year is the delightful The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society The book takes place in England, just after the close of WWII. The Guernsey Islands off the cost were occupied by the Germans. This is a tale of the island people's resilience and recovery. Written in letters, the main character, Juliet is a witty and endearing observer.
This year, there will also be a Youth Read Across Rhode Island, which will be launched this spring. In the meantime, our committee is busy reading the titles under consideration.
Anyone know of worthy books aimed at 4-5th grade that would appeal to both boys and girls?

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Email again!

I was alarmed to discover this week that emails sent through my website were not reaching me. But the problem has been fixed. Hurray for Mouseworks! (
If you recently tried to reach me through my website and I haven't responded, please email me again. Thanks!

Friday, January 22, 2010

When Illinois was the frontier

Whew! I just finished my biography of Christiana Holmes Tillson for WOMEN OF THE PRAIRIE STATE. This remarkable woman wrote an account of her years as a pioneer in Illinois. Just getting out there was trial...and she makes some rather acerbic observations of the backwoodsmen she encountered along the way. But when she arrived at her log cabin home, she discovered someone else had taken up residence and all her baggage was lost. She stuck a fresh made candle on a nail and soldiered on.