Dec slide show


Fallen Angels by Walter Dean Myers (BOTD Dec 1)

This is a story about war, compassion, and friendship set in the trenches of the Vietnam War. A group of young soldiers come face to face with the Vietcong and learn some hard lessons about life and humanity. The U.S held the 1st draft lottery since WW II on Dec 1, 1969, to insure a fresh supply of troops for the Vietnam War.


Hiroshima by John Hersey (BOTD Dec 2)

The Manhattan Project was the codename of a secret WW II project to develop the atomic bomb before the Nazis. The 1st nuclear chain reaction occurred on Dec 2, 1942, at the University of Chicago. The 1st nuclear bomb was dropped on the Japanese town of Hiroshima in 1945. This non-fiction account looks at the events following the bombing through the eyes of six real Japanese survivors.

The Once and Future King by T.H. White (BOTD Dec 3)

The play Camelot debuted on Broadway on Dec 3, 1960. It is based on this book about King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. Raised by foster parents and abused by a ruthless foster brother, young Arthur’s life is strikingly similar to a much more recent English hero - a young boy by the name of Harry Potter.

The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane (BOTD Dec 6)

One of the most important works in American literature, this novel graphically depicts the cruelty of the Civil War. Henry is a young recruit who overcomes his initial fears and eventually becomes a hero on the battlefield. Confederacy President Jefferson Davis died on Dec 6, 1889. 20th century American writers were heavily influenced by Crane’s writing style, especially Ernest Hemingway.

Lord of the Flies by William Golding (BOTD Dec 7)

Fleeing from the ravages of WW II, a group of schoolboys are stranded on a desert island and try to govern themselves with disastrous results. Author William Golding was working as a teacher when he wrote this thought provoking allegory about human nature. Prompted by the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, the U.S. entered WW II on Dec 7, 1941.

Who Were the Beatles? by Geoff Edgers (BOTD Dec 8)

Beatlemania took the U.S. by storm in 1964. The country was still mourning the assassination of President Kennedy when four young lads from Liverpool provided the perfect distraction. Who could have foreseen that the Beatles lead singer would eventually suffer the same fate? John Lennon was assassinated on Dec 8, 1980, and we can only imagine what could have been...

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis (BOTD Dec 9)

Lucy discovers the land of Narnia when she slips through a magical wardrobe. Her older siblings Edmund, Lucy, and Peter don’t believe her at first, but they soon join her in an epic struggle to help Aslan the lion reclaim his throne from the White Witch. The Disney movie version was released in the U.S. on Dec 9, 2005.

Visiting Emily by Sheila Coghill and Thom Tommaro (BOTD Dec 10)

Poet Emily Dickenson was born in Massachusetts on Dec 10, 1830. She was introverted and became increasingly reclusive as she got older. Most of her friendships were carried out by correspondence. Fewer than a dozen of her almost one thousand eight hundred poems were published during her lifetime. Many of her poems deal with themes of death and immortality.


An Inconvenient Truth by Al Gore (BOTD Dec 13)

After serving as VP under Bill Clinton throughout the 1990’s, Al Gore decided to run for President in 2000. It was an incredibly close vote and a recount was necessary. Gore finally conceded the presidential election to George W. Bush on Dec 13, 2000. Since that time he has been a strong advocate for environmental issues. This book explores the controversial topic of global warming.

Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage by Alfred Lansing (BOTD Dec 14)

This is an incredible, real survival tale about a failed attempt to reach the South Pole. Ernest Shackelton led a crew of 56 explorers to Antarctica. Their ship was caught in pack ice and completely destroyed leaving the men stranded thousands of miles from civilization. Roald Amundsen had much greater success when he became the 1st person to reach the South Pole on Dec 14, 1911.

Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell (BOTD Dec 15)

Set in Atlanta during the Civil War and Reconstruction this saga depicts the experiences of Scarlett O’Hara, the spoiled daughter of a wealthy plantation owner. It was turned into a blockbuster movie starring Vivien Leigh as Scarlett and Clark Gable as Rhett Butler, a scandalous but dashing adventurer. The movie made its premiere in Atlanta on Dec 15, 1939.

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (BOTD Dec 16)

Mr. Bennett is in poor health and if he dies soon his wife and five daughters will be in a dangerous predicament. Mrs. Bennett is worried and hopes to find husbands for her daughters quickly. Elizabeth Bennett, the 2nd oldest daughter, is introduced to Mr. Darcy and she is determined to match his pride and prejudice. Author Jane Austen was born on Dec 16, 1775.

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens (BOTD Dec 17)

Sour and stingy Ebenezer Scrooge has no place in his life for kindness or compassion. But all that will soon change when he is visited by the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future. This Christmas classic was 1st published on Dec 17, 1843. It was an immediate success and has never been out of print.

The Pearl by John Steinbeck (BOTD Dec 20)

Kino is a pearl diver in a small Mexican coastal town. He, his wife Juana, and their baby son lead a simple but happy life. Then their quiet existence is turned upside down when Kino finds a massive pearl. Surely the wealth it represents will lead to a better life. Or will it? Author John Steinbeck died on Dec 20, 1968.

Around the World in 80 Days by Jules Verne (BOTD Dec 21)

Phileas Fogg is a rich Englishman who leads a very structured, predictable existence in London in 1872. An argument with friends leads to a large bet on whether or not it is possible to travel around the world in 80 days. Quite out of character, Fogg spontaneously sets off that very day accompanied by his French servant Passepartous. He completed his trip around the world on Dec 21st.

Criss Cross by Lynne Rae Perkins (BOTD Dec 22)

Book publisher John Newbery died on Dec 22, 1767. Each year the Newbery Award is given in his honor to the most distinguished contribution to American children’s literature. 1974 Springdale graduate Lynn Rae Perkins won the award in 2006. The setting of the book is a town named Seldem which is modeled after Cheswick.

Mayflower by Nathaniel Philbrick (BOTD Dec 23)

One week after arriving in the New World, construction began on the 1st permanent European settlement in New England on Dec 23, 1620. The mythology of the Pilgrims and their peaceful co-existence with their Native American neighbors is part of our national culture. But this book paints a very different picture - one that includes ethnic cleansing, bloody wars, and environmental destruction.

80 Years of the Oscar by Robert Osborne (BOTD Dec 28)

The 1st movie theater opened on Dec 28, 1895. The Academy Awards, commonly known as the Oscars, are the biggest prizes in the film industry. This reference book chronicles the nominees and winners in every category since the ceremony began in 1927. Author Robert Osborne is an important movie critic and the host of the Turner Classic Movies cable television network.

Spoken from the Heart by Laura Bush (BOTD Dec 29)

This memoir chronicles the life of Laura Bush from her childhood in a small Texas town, to her years as an elementary teacher and librarian, to her time at the White House. As you learn the stories behind the stories, you begin to understand the complexity of the role of the First Lady of the United States. Texas became the 28th state on Dec 29, 1845.

How I Play Golf by Tiger Woods (BOTD Dec 30)

This instructional book gives a plethora of tips and advice for players of all levels. Unlike most golf instruction books that begin with swing technique and hitting off the tee, this book begins with putting. “Drive for show, putt for dough.” Tiger Woods has won plenty of dough with close to $100 million in career earnings from golf tournaments. He was born on Dec 30, 1975.