This page is a work-in-progress. I’m compiling links to seven years’ worth of book notes  from my archives. Clicking on a title will take you to my post about the book. Sometimes a single post will contain commentary on several books, so you may have to scroll down a bit. These aren’t formal critical reviews; some are recommendations or essays; other posts are my informal musings on the books I’m reading as I’m reading them—a reader’s journal of sorts. Thanks for visiting!

Alan Bennett: The Uncommon Reader. Also here.

A.S. Byatt: The Children’s Book. Also here.

Suzanne Collins: The Hunger Games.

Emma Donoghue: Room.

Sid Fleischman: By the Great Horn Spoon.

Elizabeth Goudge: The Scent of Water.
Elizabeth Goudge: Linnets and Valerians.

Helene Hanff: 84, Charing Cross Road.
Helene Hanff: Letter from New York.

Carol Kendall: The Firelings.
Carol Kendall: The Gammage Cup.

Maud Hart Lovelace: Betsy and Tacy Go Over the Big Hill
Maud Hart Lovelace: Heaven to Betsy
Maud Hart Lovelace: Emily of Deep Valley.

Patricia McKillip: The Riddle-Master of Hed.

L.M. Montgomery: Jane of Lantern Hill.
L.M. Montgomery: The Blue Castle.

Dear Genius: The Letters of Ursula Nordstrom.

Linda Sue Park: A Long Walk to Water.

Mitali Perkins: Bamboo People.

Noel Perrin: A Child’s Delight.

Elizabeth Marie Pope: The Sherwood Ring.

Muriel Spark: Memento Mori.

Josephine Tey: The Daughter of Time.

Truly, Maudly, Deeply: Books I Especially Love



More notes and recommendations. What follows is a topic-sorted list I began compiling a few years ago and then tucked away and neglected. I found it in my archives when I went to create a page for the Booknotes list above. Obviously, I was working with a different format at the time. Figured it couldn’t hurt to tack it here at the bottom of the new list. Sooner or later I’ll combine them into a consistent format. Probably later.

Middle-Grade Novels

The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart.
The Sherwood Ring by Elizabeth Marie Pope.
Damosel by Stephanie Spinner.
Stolen by Vivian Vande Velde.
Coraline by Neil Gaiman.
Rules by Cynthia Lord.
The Firelings by Carol Kendall.

Picture Books

Daisy Thinks She’s a Baby by Lisa Kopper.
Henry Hikes to Fitchburg by D. B. Johnson.
The Floating House by Scott Russell Sanders.
Fannie in the Kitchen by Deborah Hopkinson.
It’s Not My Turn to Look for Grandma by April Halprin Wayland.
The Scrambled States of America by Laurie Keller.
Boxes for Katje by Candace Fleming.

Puzzle Books and Logic

A Case of Red Herrings

Fun History Books for Kids

One Day in Elizabethan England by G. B. Kirtland.

Nature Study

A Natural History of Trees by Donald Culross Peatie.
A list of some favorite nature books


Books About Books

The Polysyllabic Spree by Nick Hornby.

Adult Nonfiction

The Film Club by David Gilmour.
Crowded with Genius: The Scottish Enlightenment

Computer Games

Oregon Trail

Stories on Audio

Jay O’Callahan (“Raisins, raisins, all we are is raisins…)
Jim Weiss (also this post)


Snoopy the Musical soundtrack