Classic Book Review: Olive

Olive by Dinah Maria Mulock Craik

Olive
by Dinah Maria Mulock Craik

4.5 out of 5 stars
Olive is born with a deformity in her spine. Her parents are devastated to have a humpback child, but try to show Olive compassion. Her childhood is peaceful, but as Olive grows up she begins to realize that she will never be able to live like other people. She is unlikely to ever marry or have a family. Uneducated and without resources, Olive must lean on her faith to help her through the difficulties of her life. She finds solace in nature and art, and in supporting her friends and family with a patient and kind spirit.

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Book Review: Round the Fire Stories

Round the Fire Stories by Arthur Conan Doyle

Round the Fire Stories
by Arthur Conan Doyle

4 out of 5 stars

These short stories all feature some horrific circumstance or frightening apparition. There are terrifying nightmares, murder, ghosts, seances, dangerous exotic animals, and stolen jewels. Each story gradually leads into more and more suspicious circumstances until the hero of the tale is finally confronted with the full effect of their horrific situation.

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Classic Book Review: The Portable Kipling

The Portable Kipling by Rudyard Kipling

The Portable Kipling
by Rudyard Kipling, Irving Howe (Editor)

3 out of 5 stars

I do love Rudyard Kipling’s writing, but I found this book difficult to get through. It took me a year to read little by little through all of the short stories and poems and essays, because I didn’t enjoy most of them.

Most of the time the setting of the stories were so entirely foreign to me that I had a hard time understanding what was going on. There are so many references to historical things and cultural ideas in India that are not explained. The author assumes that the reader already knows about these things, and so it is not clear to a modern reader what is happening. Unless you know the entire history of the British occupation of India and every battle and political upset from the 1800s, you will likely be lost.

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Classic Book Review: Lady Susan

Lady Susan by Jane Austen

Lady Susan
by Jane Austen

4 out of 5 stars

Lady Susan is charming and vivacious. Lady Susan lies to everyone. Lady Susan flirts with anything in pants! Lady Susan tries to persuade her daughter, Frederica, to marry. Frederica doesn’t like the gentlemen, so Lady Susan manipulates and schemes. Lady Susan is greedy and immoral, but… she is not boring.

The epistolary style is my favorite thing about this little book. It was so fun to see from all the different perspectives of the characters. They all have a strong opinion of Lady Susan, and they aren’t afraid to express it in their letters! Lady Susan’s letters to her friend, Alicia, are so full of malice and deceit. Ooh, it’s thrilling!

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Board Book Review: Lit for Little Hands Jane Eyre

Lit for Little Hands by Brooke Jorden

Lit for Little Hands: Jane Eyre
by Brooke Jorden, Olga Skomorokhova (Illustrations)

5 out of 5 stars

This board book tells the story of Jane Eyre, simplified for little readers. It has interactive pull tabs and flaps to reveal the mysteries surrounding Thornfield Manor! Some of the story is told with quotes from the original novel and includes original dialogue as well.

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Book Review: Aunt Jane’s Nieces Out West

Aunt Jane's Nieces Out West by Edith Van Dyne

Aunt Jane’s Nieces Out West (Aunt Jane’s Nieces, #9)
by Edith Van Dyne

4 out of 5 stars

Uncle John and his nieces discover the delights and dangers of the motion picture business when they befriend two young actresses. When a mysterious young man makes their acquaintance, the group are puzzled to explain what he is doing in California.

This penultimate book in the series is so much fun! It has mystery and stolen jewels, a daring rescue, and all the intrigues of the early days of silent films. It was really interesting to see how the girls and their Uncle John got entangled in the lives of these two actresses and the mysterious young man. I loved learning more about the motion picture business in its early days. It’s like a little snippet of history.

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Book Review: Aunt Jane’s Nieces on the Ranch

Aunt Jane's Nieces on the Ranch by Edith Van Dyne

Aunt Jane’s Nieces on the Ranch (Aunt Jane’s Nieces, #8)
by Edith Van Dyne (Pseudonym), L. Frank Baum

3 out of 5 stars

Louise is married, living happily on the ranch with her new baby and adoring husband. Patsy, Beth, and Uncle John come to visit and see little baby Jane. Uncle John worries that the local nurse that Louise has hired will be incompetent, so he brings along a trained nurse from New York to care for the little baby. However, the local Mexican nurse is upset and jealous, causing drama in the family. When both nurses and baby Jane go missing, the whole house is in an uproar to find them.

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Classic Review: Hans Brinker or the Silver Skates

Hans Brinker by Mary Mapes Dodge

Hans Brinker: The Silver Skates
by Mary Mapes DodgeMay Audubon Post (Illustrator)
4 out of 5 stars
Hans and his sister Gretel are poor. Their father was injured years ago and left with brain damage, so it is up to their mother to support the family. Hans tries to get work, but there are no jobs available in the winter time in Holland.
All the children in their village are excited for a grand skating race that will be held after Christmas, but Hans and Gretel only have cheap wooden skates that Hans made himself.

One of my favorite books as a child! Love it! There are so many elements to the story, and yet it is simple and pretty. The writing is so charming and sweet! The plot kept my interest, and I got so attached to the characters.

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Book Review: Mujercitas (Little Women: Spanish Edition)

Mujercitas by Louisa May Alcott

Mujercitas (Little Women)
by Louisa May AlcottGerardo Gambolini (Translator)
5 out of 5 stars

Fue un placer escuchar esta historia como un audiolibro en español. ¡Me encantó volver a visitar esta historia favorita en mi segundo idioma despues de leerlo muchas veces en ingles! Fue genial para mi comprensión del idioma y fue casi como redescubrir a estos personajes por primera vez.

¡Amo a Beth, Amy, Jo y Meg! Son personajes tan dulces. Nunca me canso de leer sobre sus pequeñas aventuras y dramas.

El audiolibro gratuito que escuché era de “Voz Humana”. Fue una buena traducción y sentí que reflejaba muy bien el estilo de la escritura original. Me gustó mucho la narradora. La narradora hablaba clara y lentamente, por lo que era fácil de entender, incluso si el español es su segundo idioma.

KEEP READING TO SEE MY REVIEW IN ENGLISH!

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Classic Review: Wind in the Willows

The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame

The Wind in the Willows
by Kenneth GrahameGrahame Baker-Smith (Illustrations)
5 out of 5 stars
I adore this book! It is one of my favorite classics to reread. There is something so enchanting about Mole and Rat, Toad and Badger, and all the animal folk. Every time I read it, I am swept away into the exciting world of the River.

When I received this beautiful Templar edition in the mail, I literally started crying because the book is so beautiful. The cloth-bound green cover perfectly captures the peaceful mood of a breezy day boating on the River. I love the gorgeous gold foiling on the cover. It’s so tactile! I want to run my fingers over it, feeling the embossed edges of the ripples in the water, but I don’t want to mess it up by handling it too much.

And the inside is just as gorgeous! The endpapers are a pretty green with patterns of willow branches. Every couple of pages throughout the story, there is another delightful illustration bringing the story to life.

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