Red Sky at Night by Elly MacKay


Red Sky at Night by Elly MacKay

Creative non-fiction like this is wonderful to find, especially aimed at younger audiences–this one is an illustrated book of traditional sayings about the weather (like “red sky at night, shepherd’s delight”). It’s a way to start a conversation about weather, about customs, about the habits of frogs and ladybugs (thanks to the extra section in the back on the accuracy of the sayings). The art is beautiful as well–there’s one two-page spread of small homes on high hills peppered among the ocean with a train whistling in the background that’s especially imaginative and provoking.

I do wish there had been more of a story woven in–something that I know would be difficult when all your text is just traditional sayings (but maybe with some rearranging it could have been done).

(I won this from the LibraryThing’s Early Reviewer giveaway.)


Château d’Argol by Julien Gracq

chateau dargol

“So many curious tastes enjoyed in common, ritualistic perversions of a language of their own, mutually taught, ideas fashioned by the repeated shock of their rapier-like minds, signals given by an inflection of the voice too often exchanged, a reference to a book, a melody, a name bringing with it a whole throng of common recollections, had in the end created between them a dangerous, intoxicating, vibratile atmosphere, dissipated and reborn by their contact like the withdrawal and approach of the plates of an electric condenser.”

“But in all this an initiated mind would see only a refinement of fate which lavished these treacherous consolations upon them just as wine is mixed with aromatic spices to fortify bodies under torture, in order to intensify the sharpness of fresh torments and make the victim feel to the full the excruciating bliss.”

some quotes I enjoyed from Château d’Argol by Gracq


An Illustrated Dictionary of Japanese Onomatopoeic Expressions by Taro Gomi

An Illustrated Dictionary of Japanese Onomatopoeic Expressions

“This dictionary covers only those expressions that are formed by repeating the same sound twice, such as ijiiji and appuappu. In Japanese such words are called kasanekotoba (repeated words).”

uja uja: Describes many small things gathered together and moving, such as a swarm of insects or a crowd of people seen from a distance.”

uzu uzu: Describes someone itching to do something”

gami gami: Describes someone nagging. Griping.”

gun gun: Describes something progressing or growing very rapidly.”

wan wan: Describes a dog’s bark. Bowwow. A child’s word for dog. *Incidentally, a cat mews nya nya, a cow moos mo mo, a pig oinks bu bu, a goat bleat me me, a crow caws ka ka, a sparrow tweets chun chun, and a frog croaks kero kero…”

some info I liked from Taro Gomi’s book on Japanese onomatopoeia