Apr slide show

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King Lear by William Shakespeare (BOTD Apr 1)

April 1st is commonly referred to as April Fool's Day. Shakespeare used a fool, or court jester, for comic relief in a number of his plays. Probably the most famous example is the fool in the tragedy of King Lear who slowly descends into madness after naively dividing his kingdom between his 3 daughters based on their false flattery.

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The Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr. (BOTD Apr 4)

Martin Luther King, Jr. was a prominent leader in the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960’s. He is best remembered for his eloquent “I Have a Dream” speech that he delivered from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in front of 200,000 people in 1963. He was shot and killed in Memphis, Tennessee on the morning of Apr 4, 1968.
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The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank (BOTD Apr 5)

Anne Frank is one of the most renowned and discussed victims of the Holocaust. The Frank family was trapped in Amsterdam when the Nazis took control in 1940. On her 12th birthday Anne was given a diary she used to chronicle her life from June 12, 1942 to Aug 1, 1944. She made a journal entry on Apr 5 saying that some day she wanted to be a writer.
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Foundation – Isaac Asimov (BOTD Apr 6)

This is the 1st book in the Foundation series, the winner of the Hugo award for the all-time best science fiction series. A brilliant mathematician develops a branch of mathematics that allows him to predict the large scale events of the future. He foresees the fall of the galactic empire and forms the Foundation to try and avert the disaster. Author Isaac Asimov died on Apr 6, 1992.
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Shiloh – Phyllis Reynolds Naylor (BOTD Apr 7)

An 11 year old boy adopts a stray beagle that follows him home. He names him Shiloh after a history lesson he had in school that day. The Battle of Shiloh in Tennessee on Apr 7, 1862 was the bloodiest battle in American history to that point. Both sides were shocked at the carnage and none suspected that there would be 8 larger and bloodier battles before the Civil War was over.
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I Had a Hammer by Hank Aaron (BOTD Apr 8)

Hank Aaron hit his 715th career home run on Apr 8, 1974 breaking Babe Ruth’s long standing record of 714. Unlike most sports books, this is much more than a collection of memories about important games or memorable seasons. It is a first hand account of the racial prejudices that permeated American society throughout the 20th century.
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Apollo 13 by Jeffrey Kluger and James Lovell (BOTD Apr 11)

Apollo 13 was the 3rd Apollo mission intended to land on the moon. The mission launched successfully on Apr 11, 1970 but 2 days later an explosion crippled many of the ships vital systems. Ingenuity, courage, and luck allowed the crew to survive and safely return to the Earth on Apr 17. NASA called the mission its “most successful failure.”
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The Hunt for Red October by Tom Clancy (BOTD Apr 12)

Tom Clancy was an insurance salesman in his mid-30’s with no writing experience when he decided he wanted to become an author. This story about a Soviet submarine captain who wants to defect to the U.S. was his 1st book. Published in 1984 it became a huge success and was later turned into a blockbuster film in 1990. Author Tom Clancy was born on Apr 12, 1947.
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Marley and Me – John Grogan (BOTD Apr 13)

When John Grogan and his wife decided to get a dog they had no idea what they were getting themselves into! They brought home a yellow Labrador Retriever and named him Marley after hearing a Bob Marley song on the radio. Though he was a neurotic and untrainable dog, Marley turned out to have a heart of gold. Bob Marley made his major label debut on Apr 13, 1973.
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Lincoln: A Photobiography by Russell Freedman (BOTD Apr 14)

This illustrated biography of Abraham Lincoln by famed historian Russell Freedman won the 1988 Newbery Award for most distinguished contribution to American literature for children. This biography covers Lincoln’s entire life: his childhood, his work as a lawyer, his political career as a Congressman and President, and ends with an account of his assassination on Apr 14, 1865.

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In the Year of the Boar and Jackie Robinson by Bette Bao Lord (BOTD Apr 15)

This is the story of a young girl named Shirley Temple Wong and her family who move from China to America after WW II. Though she struggles at first, Shirley makes new friends and embraces her new culture including America's obsession with baseball. Jackie Robinson became the first black player in the major leagues on Apr 15, 1947. Shirley feels a deep connection with Jackie Robinson because of their similar situations.
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Holes by Louis Sachar (BOTD Apr 18)

Stanley Yelnats has landed at the Camp Green Lake juvenile detention center and along with all the other boys he must dig a hole every day in the hot sun as part of his punishment. But the boys gradually realize that they may not just be digging to build character. It appears the warden is looking for something. The movie version was released on Apr 18, 2003.
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Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes (BOTD Apr 19)

This work of historical fiction retells the events in Boston leading up to American Revolution. The Boston Tea Party, the British blockade of the Port of Boston, the Midnight Ride of Paul Revere, and the Battles of Lexington and Concord are all included. The “Shot Heard Round the World” occurred on Apr 19, 1775. It refers to the 1st shot of the Battle of Lexington.
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The Murders in the Rue Morgue by Edgar Allan Poe (BOTD Apr 20)

This short story is generally regarded as the very 1st detective story. It was published on Apr 20, 1841. C. Auguste Dupin is called in to help solve the mystery of two brutal murders in Paris that occurred in a 4th floor room that was locked from the inside. Witnesses heard a voice but could not identify the language. Dupin finds a hair that does not appear to be human. What does it all mean???
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The Aeneid - Virgil (BOTD Apr 21)

According to tradition Rome was founded on Apr 21, 753 BC. The Aeneid is an epic poem by Virgil that tells the legendary story of Aeneas, a Trojan warrior who travels to Italy and becomes the ancestor of the Romans. The story is basically a retelling of the Greek classics the Iliad and the Odyssey with an emphasis on Roman virtues.
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The Bad News Bears by Richard Woodley (BOTD Apr 25)

A former minor-league baseball player is recruited to coach a hopeless little league team. He recruits a couple of unlikely prospects: a talented pitcher who happens to be the daughter of his ex-girlfriend and an athletic but troubled boy who smokes cigarettes and rides a Harley and suddenly the Bears are the hottest team in the league. Tatum O’Neal, who played the pitching phenom, was born on Apr 25, 1963.
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Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe (BOTD Apr 26)

This is the classic survival story of a castaway who spends 28 years on a remote tropical island near Venezuela before being rescued. The story was influenced by the real life experiences of Alexander Selkirk who lived for 4 years on a Pacific island near Chile. Author Daniel Defoe died on Apr 26, 1731.
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Paradise Lost by John Milton (BOTD Apr 27)

In 1663, a blind, impoverished, and unemployed poet named John Milton began dictating this epic poem to his family. It tells the story of the temptation of Adam and Eve and their expulsion from the Garden of Eden in a series of 10 books with a total of over 10,000 individual lines of verse. He sold the copyright to his masterpiece on Apr 27, 1667 for a mere 10 pounds (about $15).
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To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (BOTD Apr 28)

Author Harper Lee was born on Apr 28, 1926. She only wrote one novel, but what a novel it was! Set in Alabama, this classic tale follows 3 years in the life of a young girl named Scout Finch who lives with her older brother Jem and her widowed father Atticus, a lawyer whose mettle will soon be tested by a case where a black man is accused of raping a white woman.
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Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis (BOTD Apr 29)

Bud Caldwell is a 10 year old orphan who has spent most of his life moving from one abusive foster home to another. Convinced that his father is a famous jazz musician in Grand Rapids, Michigan, he runs away to try and find him. But the man he meets is much older and much grouchier than Bud had ever imagined. Could this man really be his father? Duke Ellington, one of the greatest jazz musicians of all-time, was born on Apr 29, 1899.