Beautiful Eyes: A Father Transformedby Paul Austin. Hardcover available October 27, 2014. Kindle edition available now.
Through parenting a child with a disability, a father discovers patience, acceptance, and unconditional love. In 1987, Paul Austin and his wife Sally were newlyweds, excited about their future together and happily anticipating the birth of their first child. He was a medical student and she was a nurse. Everything changed the moment the doctor rushed their infant daughter from the room just after her birth, knowing instantly that something was wrong. Sarah had almond-shaped eyes, a single crease across her palm instead of three, and low-set ears—all of which suggested that the baby had Down syndrome.
Beginning on the day Sarah is born and ending when she is a young adult living in a group home, Beautiful Eyes is the story of a father's journey toward acceptance of a child who is different. In a voice that is unflinchingly honest and unerringly compassionate, Austin chronicles his life with his daughter: watching her learn to walk and talk and form her own opinions, making decisions about her future, and navigating cultural assumptions and prejudices—all the while confronting, with poignancy and moving candor, his own limitations as her father. It is Sarah herself, who, in her own coming of age and her own reconciling with her difference, teaches her father to understand her.
Time and again, she surprises him: performing Lady Gaga’s "Poker Face" at a talent show; explaining how the word "retarded" is hurtful; reacting to the events of her life with a mixture of love, pain, and humor; and insisting on her own humanity in a world that questions it. As Sarah begins to blossom into herself, her father learns to look past his daughter’s disability and see her as the spirited, warmhearted, and uniquely wise person she is.
Timmy Failure: We Meet Againby Stephen Pastis. Available October 28, 2014. Ages 8 – 12.
His name is Failure. Timmy Failure. And his detective agency is on the verge of global domination. Global riches. Global fame. And yet the gods keep throwing him curveballs: for starters, academic probation. The coveted Miracle Report is the key to everything, including a good grade.
It’s dirty business. It’s best you know nothing. But one thing is for sure: Timmy Failure will be triumphant again! here are several moments where Timmy is unironically sweet. Anyone familiar with the previous books in the series may be surprised at the genuine sentiment in a few scenes. There are actual hugs, and there's a deeply touching conversation with a very unlikely person. ... Timmy Failure is a classic antihero: Some readers will be drawn to the book because of him; others will be drawn to it in spite of him. —Kirkus Reviews. Don’t forget other Timmy Failure books. They are for kids and kids at heart!
Color Me Happy: 100 Coloring Templates That Will Make You Smile (A Zen Coloring Book) Color Me Calm: 100 Coloring Templates for Meditation and Relaxation (A Zen Coloring Book) Both books by Lucy Mucklow and Angela Porter. Available October 28, 2014.
Already back ordered in some online outlets. Why? Because coloring is fun and therapeutic. I have some beautiful coloring books from Dover and I like to use (and suggest) watercolor pencils. Trust me.
I haven’t finished this but I think it is worth a look-see. Hiding in Plain Sight: A Novelby Nuruddin Farah. Available October 30, 2014.
From an acclaimed African writer, a novel about family, freedom, and loyalty. When Bella learns of the murder of her beloved half brother by political extremists in Mogadiscio, she’s in Rome. The two had different fathers but shared a Somali mother, from whom Bella’s inherited her freewheeling ways. An internationally known fashion photographer, dazzling but aloof, she comes and goes as she pleases, juggling three lovers.
But with her teenage niece and nephew effectively orphaned – their mother abandoned them years ago—she feels an unfamiliar surge of protective feeling. Putting her life on hold, she journeys to Nairobi, where the two are in boarding school, uncertain whether she can—or must—come to their rescue. When their mother resurfaces, reasserting her maternal rights and bringing with her a gale of chaos and confusion that mirror the deepening political instability in the region, Bella has to decide how far she will go to obey the call of sisterly responsibility.
A new departure in theme and setting for “the most important African novelist to emerge in the past twenty-five years” (The New York Review of Books) Hiding in Plain Sight, is a profound exploration of the tensions between freedom and obligation, the ways gender and sexual preference define us, and the unexpected paths by which the political disrupts the personal.
Not New but recommended. Published in 1967 but re-released in paperback with a new forward, an important and meaningful book. Man's Search for Meaningby Victor E. Frankl, forward by Howard Kushner.
Have a wonderful Halloween!