When I was living in Seattle after college and teaching middle grades in a Montessori school, I had the idea to create a newsletter about children’s books. It would have an essay by me in each issue along with reviews by students and teachers from the area; it would be made available for free copying and distribution within their schools, and I would also make copies for distribution at local bookstores. This would create a real, tangible venue for student writing and encourage communication and collaboration between teachers. I called it The Emerald City Book Review, a nod to Seattle’s nickname and to my origins as a reader in the Land of Oz. I actually produced a couple of issues, my very first venture into desktop publishing and graphic design. Then my shyness conquered my entrepreneurial spirit and the project fizzled out. (I still think it was not a bad idea. Today it would be a blog, of course.)
Lo these many years later, I suddenly had the impulse to start a book blog, which I named in honor of my original publication. The new ECBR is not a children’s book blog, although I occasionally find myself including some of my favorite books for young readers, past and present; I also read classic and contemporary literary fiction, fantasy, historical fiction, mysteries, some romance, a smidgen of science fiction, humor, biographies, nonfiction. . . almost anything except graphic horror. This is a forum for whatever I feel like writing about that relates to books in any way. I’m not in it for free review copies, ad revenue, or anything else except the challenge and fun of expressing my thoughts. What is really rewarding is when someone else responds to something I’ve written. Thank you for taking the time to do that, if you do.
I try to do at least one post per week on Sundays, with sometimes another review or other post during the week as well. I have a special love for the book as a physical object, and I try to highlight beautifully produced or well-designed books that come my way. I collect Folio Society, Heritage Press, and Limited Editions Club books when I’m lucky enough to find them at a price I can afford.
I participate in the Partner program of Powell’s City of Books, and receive a small percentage for any book that you buy there through a link on this site, which I will use to buy more books from Powell’s. Support independent bookstores!
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