‘Life as We Knew It’
By Susan Beth Pfeffer (Young adult fiction)
Sixteen-year-old Miranda’s diary entries reflect the concerns of a typical teenager — fights with her mom, anxiety about her friends, and a yearning to get her driver’s license.
When a news bulletin announces that a meteor is going to hit the moon, she barely gives it a second thought, thinking it is merely another opportunity for her teachers to assign extra homework. But as her family, friends and neighbors watch the impact from their lawn chairs, she realizes that something has gone awry. The moon is knocked closer to Earth, and soon things go from frightening to life-changing.
The collision sets off a chain of horrific events — tsunamis, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and millions of deaths. Thanks to her mother’s quick thinking, Miranda’s family is better off than most, but as supermarkets run out of food, gas prices skyrocket, utilities are lost and school is closed indefinitely, she realizes that scientists made a huge miscalculation and her family is in grave danger.
Pfeffer uses Miranda’s diary entries to tell the story, and this keeps the focus on her family. The characters are memorable and the feelings of despair, hopelessness and fear are genuine. Readers will not be able to stop thinking about this story of struggle, and ultimately, survival.
‘Animal, Vegetable, Miracle’
By Barbara Kingsolver with Steven L. Hopp and Camille Kingsolver (Adult nonfiction)
Barbara Kingsolver, her husband Steven Hopp, and their two daughters, Camille and Lily, made a commitment to eat only locally grown food for one year, and this is their personal account of that year.
To kick-off their venture, they pack their belongings, make a pit stop at the gas station to load up on “things that go crunch,” and are on their way from Tucson, Ariz., to a farm in Virginia that Steven has owned for 20 years. Upon arriving in Southern Appalachia, they get busy planting a garden, raising turkeys, and 9-year-old Lily starts her own heritage poultry business. The Kingsolver family is well versed in gardening and raising poultry, but this is a new venture, and one that Barbara refers to as a process, meaning they are still outlining the boundaries.
‘Life as We Knew It’
- Globe Life
Head for heritage: Through years of devotion to community, title of 'Mr. Carl Junction' earned
He worked for and later owned the town's weekly newspaper, the Standard, for more than 30 years; retired as the Jasper County deputy assessor in 2004; is president of the Carl Junction cemetery board and serves as the high school alumni association's corresponding secretary.
Phyllis Seesengood: Gardner's seventh in series among her best thrillers
"Fear Nothing," the seventh novel in the D.D. Warren series, may be Lisa Gardner's best psychological thriller yet.
Ryan Richardson: Dog remembers summer toads aren't chew toys
Over the next month, I became fascinated with their well-being. As far as I could tell, none of my other neighbors had the fortune of having these little guys pay them a visit.
Frankie Meyer: USGS launches powerful map tool
The site, historicalmaps .arcgis.com/usgs, will be a tremendous help to family history researchers. The maps are free, downloadable and printable. Best of all, they include the quadrangle maps that researchers used to pay for.
Cari Rerat: Gratton's series a great transition to Gaiman
In "The Lost Sun," the first book of "The United States of Asgard" by Tessa Gratton, Soren Bearskin is a berserker. He has an innate internal fire, a battle rage that he constantly tries to squelch with self-discipline, exercise, and meditation.
Frankie Meyer: List of historic sites offers plenty of research leads
In 1966, our federal government established the National Historic Preservation Act that set up the National Register of Historic Places.
Achievements (July 20)
The following people were recognized in the Joplin Globe for the following achievements.
Ryan Richardson: Preventing heat stroke can save your pet's life
I still see it around town, and it bothers me to see pets in a dangerous situation. But I don't think it is necessarily a product of intentional harm or neglect; I think it has more to do with understanding just how a dog ultimately deals with hot weather.
Shared palette: Married couple Steve and Cindy Head create art, show exhibits together
Steve Head is pretty good with cameras and video editing. Cindy Head is an expert quilter. Neither one had painted much a few years ago -- Cindy painted tulle and furniture for repurposing projects, but that was about it.
Linda Cannon: 'Freak' authors explain their unique thought processes
In 2006, Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner wrote the huge best-seller "Freakonomics" and followed it up in 2009 with "Superfreakonomics." Now they bring us "Think Like a Freak: The Authors of Freakonomics Offer to Retrain Your Brain."
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- Head for heritage: Through years of devotion to community, title of 'Mr. Carl Junction' earned