Monday, January 20, 2014

The Heart of the Caveat Whale Trilogy by Precarious Yates

 Good Day Dear Readers,
Today, I have a series of fantastical books called The Heart of the Caveat Whale Trilogy by Precarious Yates.  This is a beautifully told tale which will take you from the the land of Aiqua Marrin and down into the watery world of the deep ocean where an evilness threatens everything that's good. 
Here's the Summary:
Aiqua Marrin, the world found in The Heart of the Caveat Whale books, is a world that is 90% ocean with numerous small islands scattered throughout and two large swaths of land, one in the tropics and temperate zones, one in the icy region.

Clans of aquavians live throughout the seas of Western Aiqua Marrin, mostly in the shallow tropical seas.

Deep in Loesheen Sea lives the MerKing, whose plans to dominate all of Aiqua Marrin become successful when he and his mermen take captive as many aquavians as they can. The once peaceful oceans of Aiqua Marrin are threatened, and all hope hinges on the prophecy that Shunda will rise and stem the tide.

Best of all, wait until you hear this!
For the first time, the each book of the trilogy is available for FREE download! This offer will end on Midnight of Wednesday, 1/22, so act fast! Click the links below to find the books.

 Author: Precarious Yates

Print Length: 334 pages
Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1478175125
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
File Size: 3430 KB
Print Length: 379 pages
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
ASIN: B009H68R44
File Size: 2033 KB
Print Length: 364 pages
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
Language: English

Precarious Yates used certain kinds of poems in her stories and has agreed to talk some about them. After learning more about these fun lyrical poems, try to write a few of your own.

On Yates website is more information about the ocean life found in her book for further study.

Doggerel: Nonsense with Meaning
There is an important literary devise that readers will often encounter while reading speculative fiction: doggerel. This is poetry that is either in rhythm or out of rhythm, in rhyme or out of rhyme and is nonsensical or ridiculous in nature. It comes from an old English word that meant “only fit for dogs (or puppies)”. Don’t let that definition put you off from this genre of poetry! Nonsense has its place and its importance.

Let’s consider of the most famous pieces of doggerel: Jabberwocky. This nonsensical poem is so famous that Microsoft Word recognizes ‘Jabberwocky’ as a proper word. There are so many words throughout this poem that simply make no sense. But in the nonsense lies the beauty. It’s almost a picture of what childhood is like, having to vanquish terrible beasts before the world even makes sense. But at least in Jabberwocky, the boy is congratulated and his win is honored as real.

In The Heart of the Caveat Whale trilogy, I have several doggerel poems. I inserted them into places where the story gets so emotionally intense that there’s need for a break. And therein lays the beauty of nonsense. In a way, it’s like comic relief that you see in movies. Nonsense releases some of the emotional tension. And then the nonsense, or comic relief, when used well, ends up deepening the emotion of the story.

In The Captives, book 1 of The Heart of the Caveat Whale, there’s a scene where the soldiers are overwhelmed by the screaming of their prisoners. Everyone’s exhausted after a battle and no one can find rest within a mile of this screaming.

Then a single soldier begins to sing a ridiculous child’s tune:
Unto the day we say
And bathe our feet in sand
and clay
And laugh at the rains that
ne’er stop
That tickle our chins until
we drop

How fancy a raindrop on birds who
On bird-of-paradise with flightless
On crops of sugar on leaves of
But not in my tea cup! says Father
Now I’m sure that if you’ve never read the book this poem is even more nonsensical. Just in the way that Lewis Carroll employed creatures from Wonderland in Jabberwocky, I incorporated the Ulys (Oo’ lees), which are the river dwellers in the trilogy. Incorporating elements from the surrounding story adds a unique depth to doggerel.

Aside from the silly songs, I also have some serious poems or songs. I wouldn’t consider a serious poem doggerel simply because it shows in the context of a novel. Doggerel is purposeful nonsense. And nonsense, when used well, has great significance!

Have you ever composed doggerel? Please share some you’ve written!

To learn more, check out these links:

 Author's Arena

Precarious Yates is a shepherdess living in the middle of the USA, 500 miles from the nearest beach. She hopes to live closer to the ocean soon. While in Ireland, she lived one mile from the Atlantic Ocean. Those landscapes and seascapes inspired The Heart of the Caveat Whale trilogy.

Friday, January 10, 2014

The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates by Caroline Carlson

Good day, Dear Readers,
Aaargh! Ye book of the week is none other than The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates: Magic Marks the Spot written by Caroline Carlson. I laughed out loud several times while reading this swashbuckling tales of a young girl who dreams of a life of piracy instead of having to attend a board school for girls where she will learn how to knit, feint, and dance. Of all things. The characters are enchanting, and the story will carry you along on a grand adventure.

Plus, there's some fun to go along with the book. Follow the links below.
Happy Reading,
The Queen


Author: Caroline Carlson
Illustrator: Dave Phillips

Book Information:

Publisher and date: Publisher: HarperCollins (September 10, 2013)
Reading level: Age Level: 8 - 12 | Grade Level: 3 - 7
Book Info: Hardcover: 368 pages
Genre: Mid-grade chapter book
ISBN: 978-0062194343

Book Theme:
Pirates, Magic, Dream, Going after your dream, bravery,

Book Summary
September 10, 2013 
Pirates! Magic! Treasure! A gargoyle? Caroline Carlson's hilarious tween novel The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates #1: Magic Marks the Spot is perfect for fans of Lemony Snicket's Series of Unfortunate Events and Trenton Lee Stewart's Mysterious Benedict Society.
Hilary Westfield has always dreamed of being a pirate. She can tread water for thirty-seven minutes. She can tie a knot faster than a fleet of sailors, and she already owns a rather pointy sword.
There's only one problem: The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates refuses to let any girl join their ranks of scourges and scallywags.
But Hilary is not the kind of girl to take no for answer. To escape a life of petticoats and politeness at her stuffy finishing school, Hilary sets out in search of her own seaworthy adventure, where she gets swept up in a madcap quest involving a map without an X, a magical treasure that likely doesn't exist, a talking gargoyle, a crew of misfit scallywags, and the most treacherous—and unexpected—villain on the High Seas.
Written with uproarious wit and an inviting storyteller tone, the first book in Caroline Carlson's quirky seafaring series is a piratical tale like no other.

Activity Adventures:

From Review
Pirate-iquette Tips: Brought to you by The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates and Caroline Carlson

PIRATE-IQUETTE TIP #1: “A good pirate doesn’t run away from nefarious scoundrels—she confronts them.”
PIRATE-IQUETTE TIP #2: A pirate simply can’t abandon her mates.
PIRATE-IQUETTE TIP #3: Pirates aren’t punctual. Most pirates arrive for treasure hunts and mutinies fashionably late.
PIRATE-IQUETTE TIP #4: Pirates keep their word. All others walk the plank.
PIRATE-IQUETTE TIP #5: Sword fighting is the same as waltzing—just with a more gruesome conclusion.

Once you've accomplished these swashbuckling tips, download your own Pirate Certificate

Crafty Ideas: Be A Pirate
Make hats and eye patches and learn to talk like a pirate.
Writing Prompts:
Write a letter of persuasion to the VNHLP on why they should allow you to join their league. OR If piracy isn't your thing, write a letter to Miss Primm's Finishing School on why you would make a great pupil. Remember, being able to knit, feint and dance are all in your favor.
Here are some lesson ideas and printables that might help you with this.

Lesson Activity Idea:
Learn about Maps and how to create them.

Places you can get lesson ideas for teaching about maps:
National Geographic
National Education Association

Authors Arena

Caroline Carlson is the author of MAGIC MARKS THE SPOT, a funny and fantastical seafaring adventure for young readers. She grew up in Massachusetts and holds a BA from Swarthmore College and an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts.
Caroline lives with her husband in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, amidst many stacks of books.

Want to know more, check out this interview with Caroline Carlson.