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Search tags: the-theory-of-everything
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quote 2019-09-10 15:44
A person is a text in continuous becoming. Reading and reading the world through text influences the text that a person continuously becomes.
Multiple Literacies Theory - Diana Masny

Diana Masny

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review 2019-08-31 02:37
A Captivating MG Mix of Science and Magic
A Time Traveler's Theory of Relativity - Nicole Valentine

Finn Firth is on the verge of turning 13, and is convinced his father will forget his birthday. Which is troubling to him, but really, it's the least of his troubles. When they were three, his twin sister drowned (and he's always felt this absence, and is sure everyone around him does, too). He's not that close with his father, and his mother left home a few months ago, with no warning and no one has heard from her since. Also, his best (only?) friend, Gabi, has been spending less time with him and more time with new friends—the kind that would bully him. He's also a huge science nerd, the kind of twelve-year-old who reads (and re-reads) Richard Feynman and Carl Sagan for entertainment. The fact that he's an outsider, that he's not like the other kids at school is what drives him (like so many) to science, to something he can make sense of and put himself/his trouble in perspective.


So imagine his surprise when his grandmother informs him that she's a time traveler, actually, all the women in his family have been and are. It's not just his family, there are people throughout the world capable of this. Some in his family are more powerful than others, most can only travel to the past—one could only travel to the past but during her lifetime—his grandmother and mother are among the few that can travel forward in time. His mother, he's told, didn't leave his father and him. Finn's dad has been reassuring him that "she just needs some time," and well, that seems to be the case after all. She's stuck somewhere, unable to come back—but she's created a way for Finn to come and get her (despite being a boy).


Time travel is impossible, Finn knows—and even if it weren't, the kind of travel his grandmother describes sounds more magical than scientific. He tells his grandmother this, in fact. But—I won't get into how, it should be read in context—he's given some pretty convincing proof.


Now there are those who don't think Finn should be doing anything regarding time travel, and that no one should be tracking down his mother. And they're seemingly willing to take some extreme measures to stop him. He and Gabi set out on an adventure to evade these others and get to his mother's portal. Finn's ill-prepared for what lies ahead, but he doesn't care. Between brains and sheer determination (and largely it's the latter), he's going to find his mom.


What he never stops to ask is: what else will he find?


This is a fun little read—Finn and Gabi are well-developed characters, his various family members are interestingly and distinctively drawn, the writing is crisp and brisk—once things get going, they stay going, and it's easy to get swept up in it The best is the mix of science and . . . however you end up describing the time travel. For a book directed toward the 9-14 set, the science (time travel, chaos theory, multi-world theory, etc.) is presented plainly and without condescension. That last point, in particular, resonated with me.


The heart of this book is found in two concepts—the power of individual choice, and the importance of kindness in spite of everything. Lessons good to be absorbed by the target audience, as well as the rest of us.


I really enjoyed this book and heartily recommend it. One thing, though, kept running through my mind as I read it. As much as I enjoyed A Time Traveler's Theory of Relativity, when I was 8-13, I would've loved it (probably when I was 14 and 15, too—I just wouldn't admit to liking a book written for younger people at that time). It's the kind of book that I would've been checking out of the library every two or three months. Get this for yourself and enjoy it, get this for your kid for them to obsess over.


Disclaimer: I received this eARC from Carolrhoda Books via NetGalley in exchange for this post—thanks to both for this opportunity.

Source: irresponsiblereader.com/2019/08/30/a-time-travelers-theory-of-relativity-by-nicole-valentine-a-captivating-mg-mix-of-science-and-magic
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text 2019-07-10 22:01
A Princess in Theory by Alyssa Cole $1.99!
A Princess in Theory: Reluctant Royals - Alyssa Cole

Between grad school and multiple jobs, Naledi Smith doesn’t have time for fairy tales…or patience for the constant e-mails claiming she’s betrothed to an African prince. Sure. Right. Delete! As a former foster kid, she’s learned that the only things she can depend on are herself and the scientific method, and a silly e-mail won’t convince her otherwise.


Prince Thabiso is the sole heir to the throne of Thesolo, shouldering the hopes of his parents and his people. At the top of their list? His marriage. Ever dutiful, he tracks down his missing betrothed. When Naledi mistakes the prince for a pauper, Thabiso can’t resist the chance to experience life—and love—without the burden of his crown.


The chemistry between them is instant and irresistible, and flirty friendship quickly evolves into passionate nights. But when the truth is revealed, can a princess in theory become a princess ever after?

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review 2019-05-17 13:39
African Cowrie Shell Divination
African Cowrie Shells Divination: History, Theory, and Practice - Zolrak

by Zolrak


I have always loved cowrie shells, from when I was a child and my aunt brought one back for me from a trip to Hawaii. I never knew they could be used for divination!


This book was a strange mix. It's about African divination and has chapters on Orishas, Eshu, Yoruba, Santeria, etc., but in the introduction the author talks about God from an apparent Christian perspective. I found that a little odd, even though I know Voodoo and Christianity have combined in places like Haiti.


The second part of the book is about the actual method of divination with cowrie shells, about a third through the book. This gives instruction for prayers and preparation, followed by methods for reading with four cowrie shells, then the sixteen cowrie shells. These are given with lines in their native language and I have to admit, go on a bit for something with no translation.


The instructions for the actual reading methods are fairly straight forward. This would be a good book for someone studying the cultural influences behind these methods, but the necessity of steeping oneself in Yoruba or Santeria in preparation might not be to everyone's taste in practice.


There's an extensive glossary and overall I found it a very informative book.

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text 2019-04-08 21:29
A Princess in Theory: Reluctant Royals - Alyssa Cole

She'd always kept her deepest feelings more safely hidden than porn on an unlocked laptop---folder after figurative subfolder of false file names to mask her true feelings from those who might click through. But Jamal had gained access to the folder labeled NothingToSeeHere after just a few days. She'd opened herself to him and, frightening as it was, she wanted more. Oh god, she wanted more.

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