Author Spotlight : P G Wodehouse

It is no secret that I love reading since I have learned how to read first. I have written about reading and classic books I love to read before and not nearly enough as I really feel about it.  There are quite a few authors where I like everything they have written. One of my favorite author is Jane Austen and I am an avid fan. There is another author I like reading is British Author P. G. Wodehouse.

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Image source: Wikipedia

P. G. Wodehouse may not be as popular or well-known in US but some of you may have read or seen stories Jeeves, a smart and witty butler.  P. G. Wodehouse’s full name is Pelham Grenville Wodehouse, was an English writer whose body of work includes novels, short stories, plays, poems, song lyrics and numerous pieces of journalism. He enjoyed enormous popular success during a career that lasted more than seventy years, and his many writings continue to be widely read. His all novels are funny, witty and has its British humor. Wodehouse took a modest attitude to his own works. In Over Seventy (1957) he wrote: “I go in for what is known in the trade as ‘light writing’ and those who do that – humorists they are sometimes called – are looked down upon by the intelligentsia and sneered at.”

Best known today for the Jeeves and Blandings Castle novels and short stories, Wodehouse was also a playwright and lyricist who was part author and writer of 15 plays and of 250 lyrics for some 30 musical comedies.

His famous works includes;

  • Blanding Castle Series: It is about the upper class inhabitants of the fictional rural Blandings Castle. Includes the eccentric Lord Emsworth, obsessed by his prize-winning pig, “Percy” to Emsworth’s unappreciative second son Freddie Threepwood.
  • Psmith Stories: It is about an ingenious jack-of-all-trades with a charming, exaggeratedly refined manner. My favorite Psmith story, Leave it to Psmith, overlaps the Blandings stories in that Psmith works for Lord Emsworth.
  • The Jeeves and Wooster stories: narrated by the wealthy, scatterbrained Bertie Wooster tells stories about ingenious valet Jeeves is always able to solve problems by his intelligence and one of the most famous works by P.G. Wodehouse.
  • The Drones Club stories: It is about the mishaps of certain members of a raucous social club for London’s idle rich. Drones Club stories always involve unnamed club members known as “Eggs”, “Beans” and “Crumpets”, in each story, a well-informed Crumpet will endeavour to tell an Egg or Bean of the latest exploits of another Drones Club member, most frequently Freddie Widgeon or Bingo Little.
  • The Ukridge stories: It is about the charming but unprincipled Stanley Featherstonehaugh Ukridge, always looking to enlarge his income through the reluctant assistance of his friend in his schemes. Ukridge is one funny character.
  • His other works series are,  Mr Mulliner storiesOldest member stories, Uncle Fred’s stories and stand alone stories.

If you read some of his work, you will see some of the stories and characters from other series seemed to overlap.  However, it will not matter if you read his book in series or have not read it before as it stands and reads well on its own but surely knowing his other characters sometimes reading more fun.  Being an Indian from India, I am able to understand British humor and find it funny, however some of my US friends do not always get the dry British humor as one reads Wodehouse books, I believe with time his humor and quirkiness of characters gets entertaining so try reading some of his books.

He lived his later life in America and has written and published works from 1902 until  1977. He died in 1975 at age of 93 in New York and left a legacy of funniest stories and funny characters that are larger than life with British humor and lifestyle. He has written many novels, poems, and journalist pieces so it is not possible to list all of his works here. Here are few of my favorite books by my favorite author, P. G. Wodehouse. If you have not read his books before, try checking it out today, as funny, humorous books will lift up your mood in no time.

Best P. G. Wodehouse Books:

Product Details

My Man Jeeves:

If you have not read any Jeeves and Wooster stories, this book is a great book to start with, it comes with story collection of Jeeves and Wooster and also other stories by Wodehouse which are equally entertaining. If you know the ingeniousness of Jeeves, you will be able to reconnect with Jeeves again with this book, I have it in my book collection and I read it from time to time.

Product Details

Right Ho Jeeves:

This book is great for someone who does not know anything about Jeeves or Wooster, it will make you a fan of P.G. Wodehouse and Jeeves. It is funny, witty and you will crack up as you read the story. Remember it is a novel and not a short stories collection like previous one but still fun to read and enjoy.

 

Another funny Jeeves tales, The code of the Woosters is to never let a friend down, and Bertie would do this far more often were it not for his tactful and clever gentleman’s personal gentleman, Jeeves. Bertie is a marvelous type of fellow: over-educated but under-intelligent; useless to society but wealthy beyond any need for scruple; completely numbed by the simple pleasures of an aristocratic life, but always there for his friends and family in a pinch.

 

This is my one of the most favorite book by Wodehouse, while not as famous as Jeeves, this story is simply has it all, romance between Psmith and Eve, mystery, mistaken identity and witty dialogue.  Psmith cannot bear to be in the fish business any longer and advertises that he will do anything as long it has nothing to do with fishes. Clarence’s son, Freddie Threepwood, contacts Psmith and asks him to help with an inside-the-family theft of his aunt’s necklace and adventure begins.

Product Details

 P. G. Wodehouse 10 Books Collection:

This is 10 books series by P. G. Wodehouse. PG Wodehouse Collection The Clicking of Cuthbert, Summer Moonshine, Monkey for Nothing, A Damsel in Distress, The Girl in Blue, Service with a Smile, Ukridge, Full Moon, Aunts Aren’t Gentlemen, Piccadilly Jim.

 

These are my favorite books that I like reading again, which one of is your favorite Wodehouse books?

If you want to find out more click below:

P. G. Wodehouse Books

Product DetailsHis Jeeves and Wooster has been made in to a Television Series starring Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie from House: Jeeves and Woosters TV Series. Fans of Hugh Laurie’s prickly and dark House character may not realize that Laurie started as a slapstick comedian of the most British type: Very very silly. And nowhere has Laurie been sillier, or more likeable, than as Bertie Wooster in Jeeves & Wooster, the British TV series based on the famed P.G. Wodehouse characters. Playing off Laurie is the equally splendid Stephen Fry  as the arch and supremely competent valet Jeeves. The two create a winning, hilarious pair of tour guides into the world of early-20th-century upper-crust England. Bertie is kind-hearted and a soft touch, and, well, not exactly street smart and without Jeeves he will be lost in life. I wish I had my own Jeeves to help when problem arises! but until the day comes, I simply enjoy watching these 2 silly, great actors in this funny Wodehouse series.

Cookbooks for Vegetarians : For Healthy and Easy Cooking

Vegetarian Cooking

Being vegetarian is not new for many, some do it for health reason, some do it for ethical reason. One of my friend has gone vegetarian for saving money and being healthy. Even if you are meat eater, having vegetarian meal along with your meat and potatoes will balance your diet.

Many think Vegetarian diet means eating salads and Raw fruits, it is not the case. There are so many great vegetarian choices that are not only healthy, quick and delicious. If you are like me and sometimes need an inspiration from a cookbook, look no further. These 5 books in my cookbook collection is perfect for any cook who wants to make great tasting vegetarian meal. All you need is simple cookware pot, a few kitchen gadgets and vegetarian cooking recipe to start off making a vegetarian meal. When you cook at home, food is not only healthy but you will save money on eating out as well.

Top 5 Cookbooks for Vegetarian Eating

There are many of us eating more vegetarian diet for various reasons. One of the main reason for is that in general vegetarian diet is more healthier, unless your diet consist of soda and french fries only. One of our friend would like to try more healthier food, but he think that vegetarian diet is boring. In reality vegetarian diet can be full of variety food and you will not need to eat salads everyday. For those who might be in same boat as our friend or fully vegetarian, you will love our top 5 vegetarian cookbooks choices. These top rated and best selling vegetarian cookbooks have easy, fast, healthy and delicious vegetarian recipes to whip by anyone at home.

1. Quick Fix Vegetarian: Healthy home cooked meals in 30 minutes of less

This book is written by Robin Robertson, and great for anyone who are short on time and wants to eat healthy home cooked meals. Who is not busy now a days? Not many. Quick Fix book also has dairy free recipes for those who are lactose intolerant or vegan. Quick fix book offers easy, simple recipes for new cooks to seasoned cook. The book has many recipes from salad, main meals, appetizer and more. It also has slow cooker recipes and shows us how to use pre-made food to create a quick meal. With these tips and recipe idea, cooking for yourself or party can be fun and stress free. It is not for purest who wants to cook everything from scratch, still offers fast healthy alternative to eating at fast food joint. Our favorite recipe are, Spinach and sun dried tomatoes quesedilla, Mediterranean Orzo Salad,and No-Bake Oatmeal Almond Cookies.

2. How-Cook-Everything-Vegetarian

‘How to cook everything vegetarian’ is written Mark Bittman who has written and published numerous successful cookbooks. This cookbook has over 2000 recipes with illustrations. Book offer simple and delicious recipes for new cook to follow, there are no complex recipes or instructions which makes it lot easier for many of us cooking at home. A few of our favorite recipes from the book are Fava Bean and Mint Salad with Asparagus and Red Lentils with Chaat Masala.

3. American Vegetarian Cookbook : Fit for the Life Kitchen

This popular cookbook is written by Marilyn Diamond, who also has published many successful books in cooking and getting fit for life with focus on eating to stay fit and healthy. This cookbook has over 500 fit and healthy vegetarian recipes. It also shows why fitness and health matters and reasons we should eat certain way. The book makes it simple explanation making us want to be better at taking care of ourselves while eating good and diverse healthy food at home.

4. Students Vegetarian cookbook Revised

This paperback cookbook by Carole Raymond is perfect for students or those of us, who wants to cook frugal vegetarian meals. Make sure you get the revised copy, as new version is more updated with new and updated recipes. This cookbook has a few tofu and Nori recipes but most of the recipes are simple and easy to make and ingredients that you can find in most grocery stores.One thing we like about this cookbook is it offers lot of healthy alternative for everyone’s favorite food such as pizza, burritos and burgers and pasta. Our favorite recipes are Orange Rice and Black beans salad and Broiled Tofu with lemon vinaigrette.

5. Everything Vegetarian cookbook

This paperback cook book is authored by Jay Weinstein and has over 300 recipes inside. The book has simple ingredients that you will find in most groceries store, without hunting for those hard to find spices. Jay explains everything listed with recipe such as what is that? where to find it? and other possible questions. His writing has humorous tone with tons of fun stories about food and family. Our favorite recipes inside are, baked Ziti lasagna.

Conclusion:

I have many cookbooks as I love cooking, but these top 5 picks will be great for any home chefs from a beginner cook to expert cook. Enjoy Cooking.

How to Make Vegetarian Food at Home:

In addition to these vegetarian cookbooks, please check out Videos of: How to Make Vegetarian Pizza by Vah Chef, he is very funny, energetic and shows great way to make many vegetarian and non-veg recipes.

English Idioms and Its Meaning

Recently, we were in fast food place and saw a person ahead our our line ordering food. I am assuming the person was new to US as when the lady at the counter asked if the order was for “here” or “to go”, the person ordering seemed confused, why should he go and where? After explaining that does he want to food inside the restaurant or outside, he understood the words.  He seemed good at English but apparently not knowing local lingo made it difficult for him.

I can totally relate, as English is my second language and I learned it more fluently after moving to US. I thought it would be interesting to see commonly used idioms and its true meaning. According to freedictionary.com it has been said, The Cambridge International Dictionary of Idioms explains over 7,000 idioms current in British, American and Australian English, helping learners to understand and use them properly. The Dictionary of American Idioms, based on the 200 million words of American English text in the Cambridge International Corpus, unlocks the meaning of more than 5,000 idiomatic phrases used in contemporary American English. Full-sentence examples show how idioms are really used.

Idioms Books:

1000 English Idioms Explained (English Language)

Webster’s New World American Idioms Handbook

Scholastic Dictionary of Idioms

Super Silly Sayings That Are over Your Head: A Children’s Illustrated Book of Idioms

I’m Not Hanging Noodles on Your Ears and Other Intriguing Idioms From Around the World

Here are some most used idioms in English langauge and its supposed meaning.

1. A penny for your thought

We all would be bit more richer, if we truly got a penny for every thought we got, the idea is not bad itself. But this commonly used idiom means asking a person what he or she is thinking about or asking his or her opinion about subject they are talking about. No actual payment occurs sadly.

This phrase has been in use since middle ages when penny was worth lot more and it supposed to mean that value of personal thought was valuable and important. This phrase generally credited to a man by the name of John Heywood, a writer who penned many plays and a book.

2. Speak of the Devil!

There is no actual Devil here. It simply means if you are talking about person A, and he or she just happens to come by as you or group talks about him or her. This is short form of rarely used original idiom “Speak of the devil and he doth appear”.

Many idioms including this one has its roots starting from middle ages. There was an old superstition that if you spoke directly about evil, it will bound to appear. There are similar phrase for this idioms in many other languages: see here.

3.  Pulling Wool Over Others Eyes

Literal meaning is to blind someone through wool cloth, so he or she can not see. This idiom in reality means similar to deceive a person in a way so he or she can not see what the other person truly is doing.

4.  Sit on Fence

Sitting on fence may not be safe and you may get splinter and fall off, so do not go and sit on fence literally. This idiom means that someone is not able to make a decision  or does not want to make a choice, so he or she will wait before making a choice.

5.  Costs Arm and Leg

Losing an arm and legs would be devastating to any person. This idioms means that someone cost so outrageously priced that cost felt like losing your precious limbs. Many payday loans and delayed credit card debt payments may seems like costing an arm and legs for people who are in huge debt.

6. Taking what someone says with Pinch of Salt

Taking what someone is saying with grain of salt or pinch of salt is not what it literally means. It means that do not believe whatever the person is saying, it might be not truth or only partial truth.  Usually means to doubt the story that person is telling and not take it seriously.

7. Kill Two Bird with One Stone

This offensive and cruel sounding idiom has much simpler and much less sinister meaning, it simply means solve two problems with one single action or doing two things at the same time have been also used. For example, I had to go to post office to buy stamps and I also mailed gift to my cousin at the same time.

8.  Hearing Straight From The Horse’s Mouth

I am always amazed at doing search on idiom that who came up with all quirky phrases. Funny sounding idioms are common as this. Talking horse would make a great TV show, wait there was one in 60s, wasn’t there? This idiom means that hearing straight from the original person, source or an authority before believing any story. For example, “I heard my friend Sarah was moving to Canada, so I called her up to hear straight from the horse’s mouth before believing the gossip. She was simply going to visit and not move there as I heard.”

9.  Missing The Boat

I remember when we were in school, one of my friend said he missed the boat on applying for university. So we all joked that he should have taken a plane instead of boat, which would have been much faster. All joking aside, this idiom means that when someone has missed a chance or an opportunity for some thing, some one or some event.

10. See Eye To Eye

One can imagine seeing eye to eye, meaning two love birds are lost in to each other eyes and lost in their world, unaware of what is happening around them. Right? No. This idiom means that one or more people agree on the same thought or decision. For example, if two friends agree to visit Nigara falls during school break can be consider seeing eye to eye.

Summary:

There idioms are used or spoken has cultural reference and may mean completely different meaning to its literal meanings. It could be interesting to see someone from other culture or someone who is not aware of those idioms feel confused when one of the above idiom is used without its reference.

A Short Story about Beautiful Girl

A Short Story About a Girl Who Didn’t Know She Was Beautiful

Writing Short Stories and Poems

I have many taste along with cooking, watching movies, reading and also writing. I have been writing stories and poems for past few years but have not shared much. I have written a few poems along with post but I have not shared my fiction writing here so far. My mother and my Nana (Grandfather) both are published author, compared to them, I suck big time so I waited until I got perfection. With time I realize, only practice makes perfect and not time, so here it is for public eyes first time.  This is something I written about 4 years ago or so, and this is edited new version here for your eyes!

This is a fictional story about a girl, who is beautiful inside out but does not feel she is. I myself have gone through many self doubts about beauty before as many other girls and women may have gone through it one time or another. We all have self doubts and feel we can improve and look and feel better inside and out. Sometimes, we need to learn to see it from other’s point of view, then we may realize how beautiful, handsome or smart we truly are. I really believe all girls are beautiful and all guys are handsome, it is confidence in ourselves that makes us look the best, and not any make up or clothes can.

This is image of Frieda Pinto, Indian actress who I think is truly beauty

Beauty in Her Eyes : By Zengirl

Nira was sitting alone in cafe, sipping on her hot Cappuccino and looking out from her laptop to see people sitting around her.

Day was warm and sun has just come out from the cloud glaring Nira’s dark skin. She took out her light sweater and placed it on chair next to her. She tried to read and engage in romance novel she was reading but her mind was not in to the novel today. She generally liked to read a lot but not today!

Her eye went to nearby table where three girls about her age were having coffee, and loads of fun with laughing every minute like there was no care in the world. Nira looked at these women and thought how beautiful they were. One lady had red shawl draping her red curly hair around the shoulder! And next to her, there was a blond in dark yellow shirt, with high pony tail, she looked like fashion model to her. Third woman had dark hair and fair skin and had a beautiful smile that she has seen on any woman.

Nira sighed and wished she was as beautiful and did not have her dark skin to worry about it, then surely she would have a boyfriend! No wonder she was alone, she thought to her self. More she thought about it, sadder she became. Nira tried to shake her thoughts in to her novel and realized her cappuccino was done, and she needed more caffeine to keep her energy about.

As she got up and walked by those girl’s table to go near cashier to order more needed caffeine boost. As Nira walked passed that table with 3 girls, they looked at her walking by. One girl said to other, “Did you see how beautiful she is?”

Second girl chimed, “oh I love her dark skin, I am trying to get tanned at salon but I hardly get it right tone”.

Third girl said: “I bet she is model or actress..I loved her dress”. They all sighed and said “I wish I was beautiful like her.”

Five minutes later when those girls left the cafe, they walked by Nira and gave her smile in admiration. Nira thought how kind of these girls are to take pity on her and make feel better by smiling at her.

She never knew how beautiful she was truly. Not that day at least!

Top 10 Must See Romantic Movies

Great Romantic Movies

I love watching entertaining and educational movies in my spare time when I am not in busy with kids or cooking. I like to combine my interest so, I make healthy snacks at home just I can sit down and have entertaining friends and family by watching DVDs at home. It is not only cheaper to watch a movie from my own collection or rented from movie rental store. Also check classic uplifting holidays movies for family that will sure to bring cheer and inspiration to anyone. Valentine day is just around the corner and it is a great to do something special for your loved ones.

I love romantic reading as any other woman out there, and I cry at sappy movies and laugh and get happy when there is a happy ending to people’s love.There is something about two people destined to be together come over great obstacles and misunderstanding to come together in the end, which is so inspirational and hopeful for anyone in love out there. Many of are made for women no wonder some are call chick-movies. Another romantic things to for your loved one is get them flowers for valentine, chocolate or cook dinner for them. Hopefully guy who is truly in love will watch these movies with his girlfriend, wife, sister or mother. There are many romantic comedies out there which are great. I want to share my top romantic movies list.

Top Romantic Movies

1. Titanic

Language: English
Genre: Romance/Drama
MPAA rating: PG-13
Director: James CameronActors: Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet, Billy Zane
Based on part non-fiction and part fictional story takes place in voyage over the ocean and tells a story of unlikely pair in love. Young rich girl and poor boy’s doomed love story. Whole story is told in flash back by old lady who comes with her grand daughter to retell what really happened. I love Leo’s character in this movie and made him a star.

2. An Affair to Remember

Genres: Drama, Romance, Rating: NR,Language:English
Director: Leo McCarey
Actors: Cary Grant, Deborah Kerr, Richard Denning,Neva Patterson, Cathleen Nesbitt,Robert Q. Lewis

I did not see this movie until recently and I loved it and wonder why I had not seen it. It stars Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr. This another love story in ocean liner and fall deeply in love. Deborah’s character is engaged to somebody but they agree to meet after six month at Empire State’s Building if they still felt the love after six month’s time. A tragic accident keep their love apart but in end all ends well.

3. Casablanca

Language: English
Genre: Drama/Romance
MPAA rating: NR
Director: Michael Curtiz
Actors: Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, Paul Henreid

This movie is set in Casablaca, Africa during 1940s. Bogart’s character has past which he wants to forget and avoid. He meets his past love, Ingrid again in a bar he owns. Things get complicated as has a husband now and to watch happens next you have to watch this movie.

4. Roman Holiday

Language: English
Genre: Drama/Romance
MPAA rating: NR
Director: William Wyler
Actors: Gregory Peck, Audrey Hepburn, Eddie Albert

I love Audery Hepburn and this was her first ever movie for which she won an academy award. It also stars Gerogory Peck as news paper reporter. He meets a princess played by Audrey who has escaped her boring family life. Will he spill the beans in new paper story? Watch this movie to find out.

5. City of Angels

Genres: Drama, Fantasy, Rating: PG-13,Language:English
Director: Brad Silberling
Actors:Nicolas Cage,Meg Ryan,Andre Braugher,Dennis Franz,Colm Feore,Sarah Dampf

This movie is remade or inspired by a German movie called Wings of Desire. Meg Ryan plays a heart surgeon and has just lost a patient. An angel name Seth played by Nicholas Cage comes for this patient and falls in love with doctor. She can feel him and Angel chooses to be normal human and losing his immortality to be with woman he loves. Touching romantic story is gripping to watch.

6. When Harry Met Sally

Director: Rob Reiner
Actors:Meg Ryan,Billy Crystal,Lisa Jane Persky,Carrie Fisher,Steven Ford,Bruno Kirby
Genres: Comedy, Romance
Rating: R Language: English

This movie asks eternal question, can man and woman can be ever true friend or sex will have come between them. This movie spans two people’s life from a college to twenty years, starting with friendship and more to see they truly care and loved each other.

7. Gone With the Wind

Language: English
Genre: Drama/Romance
MPAA rating: PG
Director: Victor Fleming
Actors: Clark Gable, Vivien Leigh, George Reeves

An epic movie tells civil war tale of a strong woman, Scarlett, who loves the man she didn’t marry. When she truly realize that man she married is the person she truly love, it is too late.

8. Pretty Woman

Director: Garry Marshall
Actors: Julia Roberts, Richard Gere,Jason Alexander, Alex Hyde-White, Hector Elizondo
Genres: Romance, Comedy Rating:R
Language: English

Richard Gere plays a rich lawyer, whose girl friend has left him. He meets a prostitue to give him a direction and he uses her services to take her to special events and get to know each other to realize they there is more to the relation and that is love.

9. It Happened One Night

Language: English
Genre: Comedy/Romance
MPAA rating: NR
Director: Frank Capra
Actors: Clark Gable, Claudette Colbert, Roscoe Karns

A rich and spoiled daughter of rich father, runs away from home to meet the guy she think she in love with. She meet up Clark’s character who is newspaper reporter and they take journey together to realize at the end that they are in love with each other.

10. Romancing the Stone

Genres: Action, Adventure
Director:Robert Zemeckis
Actors:Michael Douglas,Kathleen Turner,Danny DeVito,Zack Norman,Alfonso Arau,Manuel Ojeda

A romance writer played by Kathleen Turner, receives a treasure map in the mail. She is soon headed to Columbia and have an adventure to save her sister from kidnappers, and maybe fall in love with a rogue soldier-of-fortune played by Kirk Douglas.

Non movies way to Celebrate Love, Romance and Valentine Day:

Two Dozen Red Roses (with FREE glass vase) - Flowers

 

Classic Romance Gifts

Valentine Amore Romantic Gift Set - Bed of Roses Scented floating silk rose petals and tealight candles Valentine Amore Romantic Gift Set – Bed of Roses Scented floating silk rose petals and tealight candles

BoldLoft "Say I Love You" Couple Pillowcases-Romantic Valentines Gifts for Couples, Cute Valentines Day Gift Ideas, Good Couple Gifts for Valentines, Romantic Anniversary Gifts BoldLoft “Say I Love You” Couple Pillowcases-Romantic Valentines Gifts for Couples, Cute Valentines Day Gift Ideas, Good Couple Gifts for Valentines, Romantic Anniversary Gifts


Reasons I love you stones Pack
My Heart Will... Pocket Compass My Heart Will… Pocket Compass


Top Uplifting Holiday Movies To Watch

Christmas Tradition

I am sure many of you celebrating Christmas or any holidays have some type of tradition to share with family and friends. These beautiful traditions are wonderful as they pass from generation to generation and hold family like a glue. I like reading books and watching movies, specially romantic movies, comedy movies and science fiction movies.

Top Christmas Movies to Watch With Family (Everyone)

I love watching “It is a Wonderful Life” Movie by James Stewart and Donna Reed anytime but during Christmas time it is a perfect for making a tradition.. It is such a uplifting movie that brings more holiday cheer and positive feelings around.

That got me thinking what other Christmas movies are great to watch and thought of sharing some of my favorite movies here. Here are my pick of top great movies to watch together for Christmas Season in random order: Hope you enjoy it.

1. Miracle on 34th Street

This black and white movie came out in 1947 and it is one of my favorite. It is simple story of Santa Claus us trying to prove that he is “Real” in court case. It has romance and also little girl played by Natalie Wood, who believes in Santa Claus so much. The actor Edmund Gwenn, who played Santa Claus did amazing job of looking and acting like Santa Claus would have.

The new color version of this movie was made a while ago, while it is great, I still like the original black and white movie and I am sure you will too.

2. It is a Wonderful Life

It is Wonderful Movie !

As I said, this is our tradition movie that we watch every year, This is not second best Christmas movie, it is just that list is random. I love James Stewart in every movie, even where he played villain in one of the thin man movie. This movie is in our movie gem collection and never loaned to people, as I have lost one copy already, I am that much in love with this movie and it brings so much hope and inspiration when I am feeling down.

if you ever wished or thought, what if you were not born, life would be better for those around you? Most likely not. George Baily is tired of life’s hardship and money problem, as he is about to commit suicide on Christmas eve, his guardian angel make him see how important his life truly is. You can watch on DVD or instantly on you tube or here.

3. Home Alone

This first in series of Home Alone movies, I like this is the best. The McCallister family sleeps in late as few of us do, on the day they plan to travel. They hurry and rush to the airport to barely make for the flight. They sense, something they have forgotten, which turns out to be their youngest son, Kevin. Now, this seems pretty unrealistic as it is hard to forget your child, but I suppose it could happen to any of us when we are stressed out.

Now this little Kevin wakes up to find that he is all alone at home, and somehow he come up brave enough unlike many kids who are lost from their parents. When two thieves try to break in and steal stuff as they assume the house is empty, Kevin foils their attempt with traps and funny physical comedy. Leave your logic aside and simply enjoy this movie.

4. Love Actually

Love actually has six or more stories intermingled in life of various characters. There is an English child who has fallen in love with little American girl, A father who has lost a wife, A married man who has an affair with his secretary, a girl looking for love is bound by family, A Prime minister in love with on of office aids, aging rock star and guy who has been in love with his best friend’s love.

Some stories have happy endings and some do not go anywhere, just like in real life. The best part I like about is, Hugh Grant dancing scene! I have a huge crush on him so I am bit biased. Lovely.

Hugh Grant Dancing Scene

5. Scrooged.

Scrooged is a modern version of Charles Dickens classic book, A Christmas Carol in modern setting. Bill Murry’s character Frank is bitter, cynical and selfish TV executive, who is visited by three ghosts from past, present and future to show him his life in flashbacks and future. It is funny, inspirational movie to make you do right thing in your life. You will love this modern update on old Charles Dickens’ classic novel.

Top Classic Christmas Movies For Children:

Kids are amazingly believe in Santa and they love Christmas time and magic of it all. It is no wonder that there are some great cartoon movies made for children and that we adults also love to watch. Here are some the classics I like.

1. Charlie Brown Christmas

This is simple and cute movie that children and adults will like watching. There is sick little Christmas tree that takes center stage. Charlie brown is told by Lucy that he needs to get a Christmas tree for helping the school Christmas Pageant. Charlie does not want to buy a fake tree, so he goes with Linus and end up buying little, sickly tree. They use and keep this tree despite everyone making a fun of it. Cute and charming story.

2. How Grinch Stole Christmas

How the Grinch Stole Christmas is another great holiday classic cartoon that any kids will love. There is a new version of Jim Carrey movie by the same name and while it is excellent, it might be too scary for little kids. If you have little ones, you may try watching this cute movie. Grinch is mean old thing that wants all the attention and we are supposed to hate him for it, but we end up feeling sorry for him, knowing how lonely he is! Great message and happy ending at the end keeps everyone happy.

3. Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer

When I was young, I loved watching this movie so this has a special place in my mind. This movie has a little Rudolph who is little different from other reindeer is made fun of and he goes to a misfit island where all misfit toys are there. He makes friends and helps Santa in foggy night and comes back as a hero. The story has good message and happy ending and lovely song called “Rudolph the Red nose Reindeer”, which I know by heart even now 🙂 I guess I am still child at heart. There are many wonderful classic Christmas cartoon movies that I can watch again with my two little ones.

Rudolph The Red Nose Song:

4. Frosty the Snow man

I remember singing and watching Frosty the snow man, as he was so fun snowman who could talk and was kind. This has voice done by Burl Ives, and made in 1969. This is one of the classic movie that you can watch and enjoy with your kids or nieces and nephews. I like when Frosty says “Happy Birthday” at wrong time, so innocent, so cute.

5. Mickey’s Christmas Carol

This is cartoon and simplified version of Charles Dicken’s classic story A Christmas Carol. Much suitable for young kids as the original story can be pretty scary and harsh for little mind. That is one of the reason I like remake Scrooged as it is not as harsh and we still get the message from the story. Tiny Tim’s character always breaks for heart, as I want him to get better and be happy and root for him and his family.

6. Twas the Night Before Christmas

This is one of the original movie and some of us may have forgotten about it. This is simple cartoon story of mice and Santa who saves Christmas in small town. There is original poem with same name that is classic read everywhere which has memorable song. If you have not seen it, you can put it in your list and share it with kids and family to uplift the mood and bring holiday spirit.

Top Holidays Macho Movies for Guys:

There are some macho, funny and manly Christmas movies to watch if you are more in to action and comedy type of mood. Here are some that men will like;

1. National Lampoons Christmas Vacation

No list would be complete without this classic Chevy Chase’s movie called Christmas Vacation. National Lampoon series has many funny, crazy movies and this one is no exception.

The Griswold family plans a family Christmas is anything but smooth, there are lot of funny and silly moments to enjoy. Chevy Chase’s character Clark has so much bad luck and his clumsy nature makes the holidays go from bad to worse . If that was not enough, he has crazy family house guests makes things even worse. It is holiday with fun and hilarity that will make your own family look lot saner. It stars, Chevy Chase, Beverly D’Angelo, Juliette Lewis, and Randy Quaid.

2. A Christmas Story

This movie did not do well in theater when it was first released but now it has become a cult classic. I am not sure if I like this as much but I put in here as guys or gals may like it. This movie is an adaptation of the book In “God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash.” Everyone remembers little boy in glasses in this movie. You may enjoy and like it, decide it for yourself. The story is set at some indefinite time around 1940 in an Indiana town approaching the holidays. Young Ralphie (Peter Billingsley) wants only one thing for Christmas, the Official Red Ryder Carbine-Action 200-Shot Lightning Loader Range Model Air Rifle with a compass in the stock.  The actors were and are not well known and it is certainly not kid friendly even though kid plays main role in the film. Great for adults who can not agree on what to watch maybe?

3. Die Hard

How come this action movie is a Christmas movie? Because the event folds during Christmas holiday season. It was released in 1988 and made a successful Die hard movie series for Bruce Willis to follow up with. It stars Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, and Bonnie Bedelia.

Bruce’s character, John is a New York cop in Los Angeles for the holidays to be with his family. They go to office party held by his wife’s company for a Christmas party and get trapped by terrorists played by genius Allan Rickman (Listen to his American Accent). John armed and barefoot tries to get help from police and fight terrorists to save his family and other innocent people. Real action pack movie and fun to watch! It Christmasy movie without the Santa and snow but still fun to watch.

4. Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas

This movie is amazing master piece if you look at the artistic way this stop and motion section was filmed and it took long time to shoot each sequence. Tim Burton’s this classic is Halloween and Christmas rolled into one.

When Jack, the Halloween king, comes upon a entryway to a Christmas Town, then Jack becomes obsessed with Christmas and decides to do Christmas his way and take over the whole plan. He decides to kidnap Santa so there are no interference to his plan. Jack and his Halloween friends from Halloween town prepare their version of Christmas which is scary and eerie to say the least. The plot is very unique and story has a heart. This movie is not suitable for younger kids, despite having kiddish look of the movie, however, adults will enjoy watching this movie.

5. Elf

Will Ferrell is regular human boy who is raised by an Elf father, played by Bob Newheart. They live in north pole and Will grow up, he is taller than rest of elves and accidentally he becomes more nuisance and destruction around Santa’s workshop. One day he finds out that his biological father lives in New York and sets out to find him. The movie has funny part, touching story and fun to watch! It is not classic Christmas movie, nevertheless entertaining to watch.

 Your turn: What are you favorite Christmas Movies to Watch?

Top 5 Must Read Books On Peace: How To Find Peace

Freedom from desire leads to inner peace.
– Lao Tse

For all of our lives, we feel something is missing and we chase our dream to make money, fall in love, get a college education, get married, buy house, have kids and so on and yet something remains unfulfilled in many people. That something is peace or we can say mental peace that comes with time.

What Does Peace Mean to You?

Peace is kind of inner sense calm where nothing from outwardly bothers you and you are at peace with your self and world. Peaceful heart should be free from worries, jealousy and boosting. It is inner calm and balance where nothing is overly sad or overly happy. That is what it means to me, while I am long way from achieving this feat, I am trying.

When I gave up my six figure job over 7 years ago, I had thought it was a beginning of my journey to find meaningful purpose and peace within myself. I have read many books, visited websites, attended a few talks and I found some great gems and some that were not worth my time.

I want to share top peace related books for those you might be interested, as not all books are created equally and some books can change your life and belief system in good way and some you wished you can get your wasted time back.

Here are my top peace related books, so you do not have to do trial and error to find motivational reading.

Top 5 Must Read Books on Peace:

This list is based on what I have read out of thousands of books that I have read. I am book worm and love reading in my spare time. I happen to be very fast reader too, so sometimes I have to and like to re-read books that are truly inspiring. This list is in random order;

1. 10 Secrets for Success and Inner Peace

This book has written by Dr. Wayne W. Dyer, who has written many books on self development, and has appeared in many television and radio shows such as The Today Show, The Tonight Show, and Oprah. I usually stay away from trendy things so I had not read any of his books, until a friend of gave me her copy to read it. It is simply great and shares 10 (not so much) secrets to have inner peace.

The book is about 158 pages, that reveals 10 basic steps or principles of changing the perception or outlook in our life. It is simple, although it is about peace, happiness comes along with it. Some of the secret focuses on having an open mind, avoiding weak thoughts, attach to nothing and gaining wisdom to forget your own history, treat yourself as you like to be and so on. I like how the each chapter he starts with simple yet profound quotes that makes a perfect sense.

This book is easy read in one lazy afternoon and shows many ways to bring peace, positivity and happiness all in rolled in one. One issue I have with this book is that Dr. Dyer does not show how to change certain behavior, I think he assumes that reader already knows how to do it. Being happy or bringing peaceful mind is certainly long journey that can not be achieved in one day. This book sure bring one step closer to finding inner peace.

2. How to Stop Worrying and Start Living (Revised Edition)

This is amazing book by my favorite author Dale Carnegie. I had first read it in teen years but easily forgotten in my busy teen life. It was not until, I took a Dale Carnegie leadership Workshop early in my career and then I begin co-teaching the workshop as an assistant, I truly realize how powerful this book and its message is.

You may think this is worry book, why it is in peace section? Without letting go of worry, we can not be at peace and believe me after reading and re-reading this book again, you will find peace as you let go of some of silly concerns and worries that we all tend to have.

Book begins with  “Those who don’t know how to fight worry, die young.” If you have read How to Win friends by Dale you will know, this book has same good old common sense, interviews with famous people, heartfelt advice and solutions. He does not teach you, he makes you feel like we are learning together, without making you feel guilty and silly over our worries and concern. This book is must for many home library, it is in mine.(Amzn.)

3. Peace Is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life

This is written by Thich Nhat Hanh, whom I had not known much about until I started reading Zen Habits. He recommended this book, so I had to go get and read it. This book really spoke to my inner calm and encouraged mental inner peace. We are looking for peace and happiness outward, no wonder we do not find it. Peace and happiness comes from within us, once we remove the clutter from our life, and mind.

Modern living has made us lose touch with our true self and peace within us. Thich Nhat Hanh is Zen Master, author and spiritual master who shows us how every moment can be turned in positive instead of annoying one. For him a ringing phone can be a signal to call us back to our true selves. According to him even dirty dishes, traffic lights are process to keep our conscious to stay alive to present reality. So, next time, you are stuck at red light, sit back and smile….One thing I like about this book’s method is, that process starts where-ever you might be, if I am with a toddler in kitchen, I can still get deep meditative presence and I like that. He also shows, how to increase awareness through conscious breathing which is huge step towards inner joy. World around has its beauty and its horrors but we can still find stillness and peace, this book makes me optimistic and it will do similar thing to you. (Amzn.)

4. World Peace Diet: Eating for Spiritual Health and Social Harmony

Why food book in peace section? It is because it is true that we are what we eat, really! Food is our most intimate and telling connection both with the living natural order, being compassionate with earth and with our living cultural heritage . By eating the plants and animals of our earth, we literally incorporate these principles.

Doctor Will Tuttle’s World Peace Diet is unlike any other “diet book” that you will ever read. Diet Books such as Dr. Atkins, The South Beach Diet attempt to give the reader guidance on how to lose weight. However, they fail to spell out the psychological health, ethical, environmental, and spiritual implications of their guidance. The World Peace Diet suggests how we as a species might move our consciousness forward so that we can be more free, more intelligent, more loving, and happier in the choices we make.  Make peace with earth and our body and eat diet that is good for us, earth and other living beings so that we can be in harmony and at peace.

5. Peace of Mind: Healing of Broken Lives

This book was strongly recommended by elderly uncle about 2 years ago, when we were without any income and little P was having lot of health and breathing issues. Trying to find silver lining between unemployment and sick child was tough to say the least. At the moment, I could not see how any reading will help someone in my situation and I sure did. I wished I had read it sooner.

Peace of Mind spiritual healing is based on the premise that no one can be truly healthy unless their mind, body and psyche are indeed operating in one sympathetic unit. This book promotes that it is not enough to alleviate physical symptoms of illness or injury; to be completely healed one must also address the mental and spiritual symptoms as well. This is great book for depression, mental well being. Even though I do not believe in black magic, spiritual attacks, evil eyes, and curses, this book also touches upon these topics as well.

I have tackled depression and anxiety both and now I know that to live a healthy life, stress free, we need to keep the body and spirit in sync. This book  offers a simple guide to achieving peace and tranquility for the soul in a step by step guide: Signs – Diagnosis, Healing – Treatment, Protection and Purification.

May Peace Be With You!

Also Check out Peace Quotes 

Various Peace Symbols:


8 Kids Books That Everyone Should Read

Out of many passions of mine, one of the strong love I have is for reading. I love classics, new best sellers, fiction and non fiction types of books to keep learning and be entertained at the same time. Over 2600 words to share my passion on reading, that too kid’s books but I am sure you will find something fun and educational in the process! Check out great classic books to read, and benefits of reading posts.

When I was younger (ahem, in college years),  I did not wanted to read certain books that I felt were kiddish or for teens only and I felt similar way for certain cartoon movies for me. Since then I have learned to enjoy and be educated by some of the “kiddish” books that many adults will like too. Here are some great example that kids(teens) and adults will love to read!

 

1. Tintin

 

Tintin was written by Georges R]émi a Belgian, who wrote under the pen name of Hergé. The series is one of the most popular European comics of the 20th century, with translations published in more than 80 languages and more than 350 million copies of the books sold to date. It is more well known in Europe and some Asian country compared to America.

The series is Set during a largely realistic 20th century, the hero of the series is Tintin, a young teenager Belgian reporter with faithful white terrier dog name Snowy, who helps him in his adventure. There are series of colorful characters such as cynical, often drunk and angry Captain Haddock, Classic forgetful and smart Professor Calculus, and two silly and goofy detectives Thomson and Thompson. (One is with P).

I loved reading Tintin comics when I was younger, but I recently picked up and read it again much to my amazement, I still enjoyed it and saw a few things that I had not noticed when I was teen such as;

  • Tintin comics books are all 62 pages, all 23 published ones. How amazing is to have story 62 pages long no matter which subject they chose? It somehow always looked natural.
  • Tintin was ahead of times, have moon landing in “Explorers on the Moon”, was written and published in 1954, much before real moon landing ever happened in 1969 first time. There are a few inaccuracy, but amazing thing is there many more accuracy in the comics (fictional and for kids) such as shape of rocket,rocket has two propulsion systems including neclear powered engine, imagination of how moon land and surface will look (no one had seen it in 1950s), water and knowledge of astronomy is very much close to what we know now. This is just one example, this was true for other comics subject as well.
  • Tintin travels around the world and many adventures in well known and some not so known places! Pretty cool thing in 1950s when people probably did not get much chance to travel and see the world.
  • Tintin might be young, but he is brave, smart and resourceful, almost like Indiana Jones but more realistic.
  • Dianasari (Dina) informs that Tintin is the first comic character that has been honored by Dalai Lama. The Tibetan spiritual leader honored Tintin and Archbishop Desmond Tutu at the same time (2006) according to this Source.
  • Tintin series have been made in to cartoon dvd, and maybe live action movie in US is soon to be released.

If you have never read Tintin comics, pick one up from your friend’s place, library, bookstore or amazon and read it. (Amzn.)

 

2. Asterix

 

Unlike Tintin comics, I had never heard of Asterix when I was younger. I first heard it when I was Senior in my college year but I was skeptical if I would like at ripe age of 20, so ignored it. Until I kept hearing from various different people around me, including someone who had bought whole series at crazy price! I thought he was nuts, until I read one Asterix comics myself.

So, what is Asterix is about? Asterix or The Adventures of Asterix  is a series of French comic books written by René Goscinny and illustrated by Albert Uderzo and shows fun and adventure with pun! The comic series follows the life and adventure of Asterix and his larger then life sidekick and friend Obliex in ancient Gaul as they are pitted against Roman occupation and regime. There are magic, world travel, humor and much more packed in to this comics.

  • The series have 34 comics total, starting from 1959 first comic book being published.
  • Even number of Asterix books have story set in Gaul and odd number of comics had story set in various countries in the world.
  • The both hero and friend have name ending with “ix”.
  • The series can be classified in fantasy and science fiction both.
  • This series has been translated in to 100 different languages and 325 millions copies sold.
  • There has been 11 movies have been made, 8 cartoon and 3 with live action with people. There have been games based on the comics book as well.
  • Same as Tintin, this series is more popular in Europe and some Asian Countries, not many here in America know about this series (yet). (Amzn)

 

3. The Series of Unfortunate Events

 

The Series of Unfortunate Events is a series of children’s novels (13 in series) by Lemony Snicket (pen name of American author Daniel Handler) which follows the crazy lives of three orphaned kids named Violet, Klaus and Sunny. Their parents die in house fire under mysterious circumstances, and their cousin Count Olaf is shadowy figure who is after the kids inheritance and other relatives lives. Only thing the kids have is their intellect and each other to outsmart Count Olaf.

Violet is smart and great inventor, Klaus is great reader of books and baby sunny develops biting and cooking ability as story progresses starting with “Bad Beginning”. Yes that is the title of first book and it has 13 total, each book start with dreadful “do not read” type of sentences yet fun to read. As the books continue, the three children uncover more and more of the mystery surrounding their parents’ deaths and soon find that their parents were in a secret organization, V.F.D., along with several of their guardians.

There has been one movie made with Jim Carrey which covered first 3 book stories. Movie itself was not bad but other in series never materialized. Read these 13 “dreadful” books for fun adventure, smart invention, murder and mystery secret organization’s involvement in it.

  • The entire series is actively narrated by Snicket, who makes numerous references to his mysterious, deceased love interest, Beatrice.
  • Books have been translated in to 41 languages and 60 millions copies have been sold.
  • The siblings are followed by misfortune wherever they go, but occasionally something good happens and they survive by their intelligence.
  • It is hard to tell which timeline the book is set in, it seems it alternate earth in 1930s era but seems timeless and modern.
  • There are 13 books in series, and each book have 13 chapters. Only exception is the last book in the series, which has 14 chapters.
  • Count Olaf is master of disguise, smart and wicked.
  • While the books are marketed primarily to children, they are written with adult readers also in mind; the series features references more likely to make sense to adults. Many of the characters’ names allude to other fictional works or real people with macabre connections. (Amzn.)

 

4. Harry Potter Series:

 

Now, Harry Potter is much more well known series that everyone knows and movies have been made and which had made Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint in to stars! I would say movies are not bad but books are much more superior to read and understand from it. There are 7 books in the series and some books are big with over 800 pages but I am sure many people will love the story of boy wizard who was lonely, orphaned into great hero and friend against battle of good versus evil. Each year Harry learns and goes through various problems such as social, emotional and self doubting issues to overcome his greatest task that lies ahead, some we learn though flashbacks of his parents and his birth.

  • Harry Potter Book has been translated in to 67 languages so far, 8 movies have been made about it (last book with 2 part movies)
  • Harry potter books are also loved by adults that publisher have published books with 2 covers, one of younger readers and one of adult readers (with same content inside)
  • Many blogs, support books, and supplemental books on understanding game of quidditch have been written.
  • These book can belong to Fantasy, Magic, Coming of age, Death, Mystery, Thriller, adventure genre.
  • Harry potter introduced new word in to British dictionary such as Muggle and Quidditch. (Amzn.)

 

5. Amar Chitra Katha Series

 

Every Indian will know this comic series which tells storie of many Gods, Goddess, Famous Real People lives in form of comics. I always loved reading Amar Chitra Katha but I recently found that many non Indians seems to enjoy these comics series. If you had not read it or know about it, here is some tidbit about it;

  • Amar Chitra Katha, loosely translates in to Immortal Picture Stories and in a way they are!
  • It is translated in to 20 Indian languages, including English and have sold over 90 million copies.
  • It was created by Anant Pai for India Book House Publishing in 1967.
  • Very first Amar Chitra Katha was published in “Kannada” Language in 1965.
  • Amar Chitra Katha have been written by many notable and creative Indian Author team!
  • There have been over 400 different titles in Amar Chitra Katha Series, for every age, every taste (mythical, historical to real heros of India) Cartoon network also showing now Amar Chitra Katha cartoon.
  • Most famous of mythology of Gods, Fables (moral stories), Panchatantra (Moral stories with animal characters), Humor and wit (Birbal etc), Epics, Biographies of Indian and other famous people.
  • Stories are told in comics without degrading the morals and values of it and generally loved by kids and adult alike. The interesting thing I was told by local Indian bookstore owner, that many non Indian buyers are buying these series and seems to enjoy it. (Amzn.)

 

6.  Lord Of the Ring

 

I admit it, I had not read Lord of the Ring Trilogy Until the First Movie Came out in US. I had read hobbit which was prequel to Lord of the ring but I had not thought of reading further in the series. Hobbit is fun story where Bilbo gets the Ring which he does not know is evil. It is more fun and light-hearted story compared to Lord of the ring, which has some dark shades and appeal more to teen or adult.

  • According to wikipedia source, Lord of the ring is 2nd best selling novel ever in the world.
  • It was written around 1937-1949, time of second world war, and published around 1954, 1955 in 3 volume series, called the fellowship of the ring, Two tower, and Return of the King.
  • Story has dark wizard Sauron, good wizard Gandlaf, small and happy Hobbits, Elves, Human, Dwarfs, Giant, Talking and walking trees, Ring Slave creature Gollum, and many mythical animals and creatures. Story is supposed to set in fictional middle earth.
  • Tolkien not only wrote the large three volume story, but also created details maps of the fictional middle earth and other elves language that goes with the story, which is quite impressive.
  • When book first released, critics were divided and had mixed feelings about it unlike it now, as it is considered to be classic and loved by many and is influence for many new writers and film makers.
  • The book has been on radio, theater and movies. Generally movie made from book is inferior to the original book for many cases, however, the recent trilogy movie made by Peter Jackson, is decent presentation of the book and I think it does fairly well job of conveying book’s message. (Amzn.)

 

7. Mrs. Frisby and Rats of NIMH

 

I read this book after someone recommending me to check it out, otherwise, I might not have found this gem of book. Mrs. Frisby and Rats and Of NIMH is a 1971 children’s book by Robert C. O’Brien. Robert O’ Brian was inspired by real research by John Colhoun’s Research on Rats at National Institute of Mental Health AKA (NIMH). (Personal Note:  Modern Technology have shown online simulations and other non evasive method can achieve medical advancement without hurting lives), this story shows the fear, real emotion and horror of Rats and Mice and how they triumph over it little and lose a little, just like us humans. Maybe, just maybe it show us that small animals such as mice and rats also get hurt, happy and have feelings just like us. The novel relates the plight of a widowed field mouse, Mrs. Frisby, who seeks the aid of a group of former laboratory rats in rescuing her home from destruction by a farmer’s plow, and of the history of the rats’ escape from the laboratory and development of a literate and technological society.

  • This book was followed up with Roscoe and Rats and NIMH novel.
  • This book won Newbery medal in 1972.
  • Cartoon movie Secret of NIMH was released in 1982, which made a few changes to original story. The movie is entertaining for those who might have read the book. However, book is much more superior in telling the story with feelings in details.
  • It is based on real research on RATS.
  • NIMH stands for National Institute of Mental Health
  • Movie has few changes: such as added mystical element, Jenner is made in to villain unlike in the book, Mrs, Frisby’s name was changed to Mrs. Brisby to avoid trademark issue with Frisbee. (Amzn.)

 

8. Encyclopedia Brown

 

Everyone knows about Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew books, so I am not writing much about those here.  You may or may not have heard of Encyclopedia Brown is the same Genre as Hardy Boys and Nancy drew and great read about solving mystery, crime by kid Sleuth called Encyclopedia Brown. I certainly did not know about this lesser known series when I was child.

There have been 28 Encyclopedia Brown Series books and other additional related works. One great thing about this book series is that you do not have to read books in series or have read previous series to enjoy and understand the story. Each book stands on its own as basic things are told in the beginning of the each book. (Amzn.)

  • Each Book actually divided in 10 or more short stories and intended to be solved by reader. I will be honest and idiot enough to admit it, that even though I think of myself fairly intelligent, I did not always found the right clue as an adult while kid Encyclopedia Brown outsmarted me and few other adults. That makes it fun and challenging read for teen or even adult.
  • I have learned to think with my eyes closed like Encyclopedia brown does before solving case, thinking deeply.
  • Encyclopedia Brown has its own kids detective agency which charges 25 cents plus expenses for neighbor hood children.
  • Encyclopedia Brown’s father is Police chief in town of Idaville (fictional). He helps his father some times.
  • There is mean and bully gang, led by Bug Meany in most stories, who will look for revenge and foiled by E. Brown.
  • E. Brown has friend name Sally, who he might have crush on, although book never elaborates on it.
  • This book series and author received Edgar Award in 1976 by Mystery Writers of America Society.
  • There was a TV series based on the books on HBO around 1989, which aired 30 minutes episodes. I have not seen any episodes so can not tell how it was. Has anyone seen it?

Conclusion:

When reading a book, do not go by labels such as kids book, or children Novella, read based on interest and not based on age or race. You may find great gem of books that way, if we start looking out of box thinking. Have you read these books? What are your thoughts on it?

Do you have other books to share, add to the list? Keep reading, Keep Learning and Have fun.

Image source: Wikipedia, Amazon,Self