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namarome has commented on (3) products.

I'm Down: A Memoir by Mishna Wolff
I'm Down: A Memoir

namarome, September 27, 2012

This felt way too awkward throughout. It felt too confessional, too critical, too funny, too...everything. Though she tried to include enough background to have all of the characters be sympathetic characters, I ended up angry at too many of them.
Some of the anecdotes would have made good short stories on their own, but tied together through 7-ish (or more, depending on how you look at it) years of her life, they left more questions than insight. The chapter called "Cappin" (or something similar) worked very well--I think her ideas would work better as a Sedaris-like collection of stories.
It must be difficult to straddle cultures and have parents with the quirks of hers, but she needed a stricter editor to help her turn this into a cohesive memoir.
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Grammar Girl Presents the Ultimate Writing Guide for Students by Mignon Fogarty
Grammar Girl Presents the Ultimate Writing Guide for Students

namarome, July 13, 2011

I love Grammar Girl's podcasts, and frequently refer to them to settle an argument or teach a grammar point to kids. I loved her first guide to better writing, and tried using small chunks with my students who could understand grammar at that level. I recently received an advanced reader's copy of her new writing guide for students, and continue to put Mignon Fogarty on a pedestal. This new book makes the grammar concepts so much more accessible to students. I would even use pieces of it for students as young as third grade. She mixes formal grammar vocabulary with informal references and explanations, boiling things down to what we really need to know. She justifies when we need to follow certain rules for clarity, and that sometimes we just have to memorize things because we do. (Bummer.) I think her humor, her matter-of-fact-ness, and her unapologetic interest in all things language make this an excellent book to have.
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World War II: An Interactive History Adventure (You Choose Books: An Interactive History Adventure) by Elizabeth Raum
World War II: An Interactive History Adventure (You Choose Books: An Interactive History Adventure)

namarome, April 18, 2011

I am so excited to have come across this series. It's a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure type series about historical time periods or events. I teach high school history, but many of my students have quite low reading levels. I feel like this is a fun alternative/addition to strict textbook reading. In this book ,we can start at the beginning, choose to follow the American soldiers, and suddenly we're on a ship at Iwo Jima. Like in the fiction series (and in real life), one wrong choice can lead to instant or painful death. There are photos from the events and places, and plenty of background knowledge to beef up their understanding. And it's a book we can read again and again, choosing new paths each time.
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