“The Unhappy Little Dragon~Lessons Learned” by Carole Wolf

A Bit About the Author:   Carolyn Wolfe is a free lance writer, poet, and author of six books including her collections of poetry, short stories and her first children’s book of bedtime stories in verse, titled: The Bedtime Of The Sky and Other Sleepy Bye Stories. In this, her sixth book, The Unhappy Little Dragon, Lessons Learned, she reveals the journey of Happy the dragon, who, while trying to understand how to master his uncontrollable gift of fire, has an exciting adventure in the woods. His forest friends help him understand his gift and that he really is a very special dragon indeed! Ms. Wolfe lives in the Shenandoah Valley with her Photographer, husband Scott, and her houseful of animal companions. For more information about Ms. Wolfe and her books please visit her website at: www.whenthemoonspeaks.com.

Purchase this book at Amazon.


Little Dragon Synopsis:

This is the tale of a little Dragon who has a big problem, he cannot control his fire!

After a major mishap, he runs away into the forest and has a wonderful adventure where he meets new friends, learns that every creature has a unique gift, and also finds out the special way in which he can use his own remarkable gift of fire.


An Excerpt From The Book:


“Let me ask you something son, when you practice your fire burning skills-what do you tell

yourself?”   “Tell myself? What do you mean?” asked Happy not understanding what his new friend was

getting at.   (Shelley the Turtle)   “Well, maybe I should ask instead, how do you feel when you practice holding in your flame?   “Oh that! I feel scared, so scared that I will fail and burn everything up!” Happy answered

sadly.   “Well now, I have a suggestion for you. Try feeling like you will not burn everything up.

Instead tell yourself you will succeed in keeping your fire to yourself!” Shelley told him.   “But I am so scared. I really don’t think I can tell myself that I won’t burn everything up

when I know I will!”   Happy argued in a worried little voice.   Shelley looked at Happy’s very unhappy face and said,”I have news for you Happy, and I want

you to listen to me now!”   Then Shelley continued to explain.   “Dragons aren’t the only ones who have special gifts, Happy, no, no! All of the animals were

given a special gift of one kind or another. All of us had to learn how to use it wisely,

just like you. You sort of have to grow into your gift, like growing up! That’s why the

animals need a teacher.   Can you guess what my special gift is?”   Shelley asked, looking at Happy expectantly.   Happy didn’t know the answer so he shook his head and just kept quiet.   “Why Happy, I am a teacher!” Shelley said proudly.





Good-night, dear Mr. Sendak…

Cover of "Where the Wild Things Are"

Cover of Where the Wild Things Are

In the Night Kitchen

In the Night Kitchen (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Our beloved “Wild Thing” has gone back to his island in his little boat where he will undoubtedly be greeted by many a beastie and wild thing who has loved and missed him over many years.  It will be such a loss for those of us still left over here in The Night Kitchen…sleeping in our restless beds, waiting for the bread to be baked and our milk to be poured.
He died yesterday at age 83.
When my children were old enough to sit and listen to music and to my reading to them, I bought Carol King‘s rendition of “I’m Really Rosie” and all the other Maurice Sendak books and poems to music.  “Rosie” was a favorite of my daughter’s.  But, I have sung “Chicken Soup” to my children hundreds of times, as well as to my grandchildren and other children, over the course of nearly 40 years. I’ve sung it with passion and acted it out because
I know it by heart.
I most recently bought a set of Mr. Sendak’s tiny library for my youngest grandsons.  One of whom was pictured hiding under a table with a little red one in his tiny hands.
  His dad did the same thing 30 years prior.
Maurice doesn’t age, you see.
“I Don’t Care” kept my grandson, Kellan, on the sofa and quiet when he had a blazing ear infection last year.  He loves to hear me sing it to him whenever we get a chance.
Kellan is sometimes a petulant child, and that poem suits him just fine.  :]
It and he are adorable!
And, “One Was Johnny” used to give us all a run for our money.  I remember all my children and me during the years trying to keep up with that song!
I know all the songs/poems by heart.
I’ve read “Where the Wild Things Are” hundreds of times, have you?  I’ve purchased “wild thing” paraphernalia for my children and grands over the past 40 years, and wished I was young enough to wear them and play with them myself.  Even now, I’d take a Wild Thing stuffed animal, thank you.
So, here’s to you, Mr. Sendak….and, actually,
Hail, to the Chief!
Good-night, dear friend.
My little family and I love you and  will really miss you.

A Small Note About Him from Galley Cat:  (mediabistro.com)
Brooklyn-born children’s writer and illustrator Maurice Sendak. Sendak grew up in Bensonhurst and graduated Lafayette High School before going on to create wildly popular works—often dark and with an edge—like Where the Wild Things Are, which won him the prestigious Caldecott Medal. Even before his passing, the Brooklyn Book Festival had planned to honor Mr. Sendak with a special bookmark given to attendees at this year’s festival on September 23, a fitting tribute from Brooklyn—the Creative Capital of New York City and home to more writers per square inch than anywhere—to one of its native sons. On behalf of literary lovers throughout Brooklyn and beyond, I extend our thoughts and prayers to Maurice Sendak’s family, friends and colleagues.”
Please take time to read about him in this long,  dedicated article on Mr. Sendak  by The New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/09/books/maurice-sendak-childrens-author-dies-at-83.html?_r=1
Please leave your comments.    Do you  have a favorite memory of Mr. Sendak’s works?

Where Have I Been? And, “Pump Up Your Books”~A Virtual Book Touring Company for Authors and their Books

Image I’ve been reading and writing reviews which I’ve posted at my other blog, and have sadly neglected this wordpress blog for nearly a year.  When I decided to reopen it this morining, I was shocked to find that there are the rareist of followers that are still coming by!  OMGoodness, I feel so horrible that I’ve let them down!!

For the next few days, I’m going to be moving several of my latest reviews over to this website so I can update things for you.  After which, I’m going to be specifically dedicating this site to my professional work with authors and their books through my virtual book tour company affiliation with:  Pump Up Your Books.

Pump Up Your Books has proven to be the finest of the virtual book touring companies I’ve had the pleasure of working with over the past nearly 7 years as I’ve been developing my blogs, and publishing relationships.  I’ve found the authors and books they represent to be of the highest caliber.  I’m an eclectic reader with a strong background in many areas of interest. 

Pump Up Your Books specializes in bringing its authors to those readers who are looking for a wide range of subjects and genre.  From historical fiction, romance, spiritually inspired, non-fiction, health conscious, contemporary fiction, to business-related books, Pump Up Your Books has all the spread of books any major bookstore can offer!  That’s why I’m excited to be a new affiliate with them.

In the past years, for example, through this touring group, I’ve been able to read and bring my readers reviews, author interviews and giveaways on books like the following:

“Equity of Evil” by Rudy Mazzocchi    A Medical/Techo. Thriller   Now being looked at by Oprah’s Books!

“Daddy’s Home” by AK Alexander     A Psychological Suspense Novel  

“The Cross Dresser’s Wife~Our Secret Lives” Edited by Dee A. Levy & B. Sheffield Hunt     Non-Fiction

“Liberation: The Andrusian Chronicles, Book One” by Maria Lucia          A Fantasy/Syfy Novel

“The Year She Fell” by Alicia Rasley      A General Fiction/Women Writer’s Novel

“Tapestry Baby” by Carole Watherhouse     A Contemporary Fiction/Women’s Novel


In addition to these things I’ve been doing above, I’ve been taking time to help my husband as he’s finished writing his first novel.  It’s called “Predator,” and it’s a great read!  About the early formings of a psychopath…a mafia hitman.  This particular book is the prequel to his series.  We’re expecting its publication within the next year.


A final word:  I would like to open this website up to others who would like to post their insights or comments on books in general or specific.  I would, of course, as Editor, have to have the last word about content, but I would welcome your input, and in having you choose a by-line for this with your own particular “Column,” if you like.  Please contact me for more information on that at:  the bookishdame@aol.com


So, busy…..   I’ll be checking back in later this week!    Thanks for stopping by.



Nearly November Last Reads

As it’s nearly November, I want to share my last reads of October with you for good measure:

“Room,” was all I expected it to be and more.  Such a great read from an author whose work (“Slammerkin”) I’d enjoyed before.  Ms Donoghue has a slightly skewed vision which makes her works artistic as well as engrossing.  This book has that nearly, dare I say it, Edgar Allan Poeish twist to it.  Or, at least her writing is reminiscent of something more subtlely gothic.  It’s a sense I get more than an actual thing written out-and-out.   Almost as if this story could have been placed in any timeframe and still work in most ways.

In the book, we find a mother and little, precocious 5 yr. old boy, Jack, who is the narrator of the story, held captive in a “room.”  The mother was abducted and has been held for years as a sex slave, although allowed to keep her son.

  The tension and danger is palpable…the confinement is claustrophobic to the reader as we begin to feel and sense the “Room” and Old Nick, the rapist/captor.  I began to feel my heart race as I realize that everything rested on his bringing them food supplies and allowing them to have basic survival needs in that shed of a hovel!  Donoghue is a genius of a writer!

I won’t spoil this book by saying more than it’s a psychological thriller, a human story with depth and sensitivity, and an unforgettable cast of characters.   As a grandmother of children near Jack’s age, I could relate to so much of his thinking and ways of behaving.  As a mother of a daughter near his mother’s age who has experienced a trauma in her life, I could relate to several things, as well.  The aftermath of their captivity is most distressing, too!    This is a strong novel with believable characters that touch your heart.

Your Bookish Dame highly recommends this to her literary friends of all sorts.  If you read past the first chapter, you won’t be able to put this one down!   As I mostly subscribe to books worthy of your and my time, this one ranks high in that category.

I’d love to hear what you think of “Room,” once you’ve read it.  Please leave a comment….


“Storyteller’s Daughter,” by Saira Shah, as seen above, is the second book I want to review for you.   She has an absorbing story to tell, herself, as we follow her in pursuit of an Afghanistan she was raised to believe in as a nearly mystical place, at her father’s knee.

A brilliant author with a fascinating life, Ms Shah kept me on the edge of my seat and the hours flew by as I listened to her descriptions of the Afghaney (sp?) people, the Taliban, the different regional tribes, and her travels through  the mountain terrains to seek her ancestoral home and people.  What she found in the end was far more than she’d hoped for or expected.

Speaking from a child of the West’s perspective, as well as a grandchild of ancient Afghanistan, a journalist, and an adventurer, Ms Shah paints both a beautiful and a wise story of lost innocence and gained insights.  As another story of a woman journalist and photographer in a war torn country who is both brave and heroic, I find this book an inspiration.

“Storyteller’s Daughter,”  has much to tell us about Islamic culture and faith, the horrors of war, the involvement of foreign countries in middle eastern conflicts, and displaced peoples.  Ms Shah was also responsible for documentaries of note including “Behind the Veil…”
This is one of the very best audiobooks I’ve experienced this last 6 months.  It would also be a great read to linger over, I’m certain.

Highly recommended!    While it does not change my personal support of our troops in the Afghanistan War, I thought the book gave me a good educational insight into the whole country and people, and it’s history.

Your Bookish Dame 


Snakewoman of Little Egypt

A new read for me, and one I’m dying to get into.  I’m trying to keep my eyes open long enough to read through the first quater of the book.  My day has been so busy and I want so much to get immersed in this very interesting tale of  a young woman ex-con recently a member of a snake-handling congregation, and a anthropology professor with homesickness for the Africa where he left a lover and illegitmate daughter he’s never known. 

As the very fickle finger of fate brings these two together, there’s a tale to be told…complete with the woes of living the hardscrabble life of a brokendown farm, strange bedfellows and a groundhog or two thrown in for good meausre.

I for one want to know more about that snakehandling cultand the reason why the recently released from prison girl shot her nogood preacher husband!     More from your Bookish Dame on this book  when I finish it! 

Backseat Saints Review from Bookish Dame

Please take a moment to check out the link below to see the reviews on “Backseat Saints,” by Joshilyn Jackson.

<a href=”http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7114381-backseat-saints” style=”float: left; padding-right: 20px”><img alt=”Backseat Saints” border=”0″ src=”http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1275622170m/7114381.jpg” /></a><a href=”http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7114381-backseat-saints”>Backseat Saints</a> by <a href=”http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/45915.Joshilyn_Jackson”>Joshilyn Jackson</a><br/>
My rating: <a href=”http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/124647811″>4 of 5 stars</a><br /><br />
Joshilyn Jackson knows the South well, and she understands the psyche of the battered woman and the battering male.  This is one of those rare treats of a book that give it all:  humor, horror, humanity and a homefree slide into homebase.  Jackson captures the heart of her characters and serves them up to us in costumes and wisecracks. I love her wicked ways.  I’m reading everything she ever wrote!!
<a href=”http://www.goodreads.com/review/list/268108-deborah”>View all my reviews</a>

Bookish Fall Trend?

It seems I’m in a rather warped slant of mind since a particular bookish theme is drawing my attention these days.  I can’t seem to get enough of the subject, and I think it all started with the following book:

“13 1/2,” by Nevada Barr :   This, as I understand from other reviews, is a book unlike her regular mysteries, and it’s a doozie!  A story about a couple of brothers, one who murdered his parents, is put into an asylum, prison and is dubbed, “Butcher Boy.”  And, his brother who was wounded but not murdered at the same event.  The novel delves into the psychology of children who murder family, the mind-sets of psychologists and patients and just the very warped mind of a psycopath.  Without giving you all the twists and turns of this horrifically fantastic novel, let me say that it’s a read that will not soon leave your mind.  It’s a book that takes you up and won’t let go until you’re at the last pages.   Ms Barr reminds us specifically to think of Scott Peterson and others who are cold-blooded sociopaths.  She is obviously interested in this type of person and her book closely tracks that kind of killer.   I highly recommend this book for those who love Jeffrey Deaver and other such authors.

So, once my mind was set that way, I found this book interesting:  “Still Missing,” by Chevy Stevens.   This is a novel about a young woman who is abducted by a psychopath and kept locked away in a cabin hideaway for over a year.  His psychopathology takes on a life of its own, and she tries to learn all she can about him and the reasons for his behaviors so she can escape.   A frightening story of blood and sacrifice, murder and psychiatric treatment, this is such an unusual and engrossing read that I’ve been up 2 nights finishing it!   I’ve been a bookworm all my life, and I have to say I’ve never read anything quite like this book.   It’s amazing.

A book recommended by my daughter, and one I’m dying to read along these lines is:   “Up From The Blue: A Novel,” by Susan Henderson.   I haven’t read any more than a review on this one, but it’s gotten high marks as a story about the relationship between a young girl and her mother who goes missing from their military home of the 1950’s.   Having been a military brat, myself, this sounds interesting and familiar to me, as the girl and her brother (who is made to salute the father, for instance), struggle to grow up in a strange and stressfully militaristic home.   Something in all this harkens back to the “cabin capture” of  “Still Missing” to me.  The idea that you’re held captive for a time, trying to out-psych your “captor” and hoping for the day you can escape into freedom.

Well, your Bookish Dame has given you 3 books to worry and wonder about in the same general reading area.  So, now let me talk about another fabulous book I highly recommend.

“The Lotus Eaters,” by Tatjana Soli.   This is a fabulous novel about a young woman journalist in the final days of the Vietnam war in Saigon.  Beautifully and richly written about the culture, the war torn area and the people of Vietnam, it is also a book that brings you quickly into the internal life of the young woman and her love interest, a Vietnamese man.   As they make their way to evacuating the city for the final time, the book takes us through her struggles as a photojournalist–the sights, the competition, the loves of her life;  her heart-wrenching struggles for survival; and her mixed emotions about leaving Vietnam.   This is a book and subject I never thought I would enjoy.  I grew up during the Vietnam War, and I wasn’t fond of the way it took away friends of mine and absorbed news and trends for years….  It seemed to suck up the fresh air around us as a college student in Europe.   But, after some 30 years, I was compelled to pick this book up….and I’m glad I did.   It’s very good!

For more book reviews and suggestions given by my friends and me, visit us on Goodreads.com

Goodreads is a great place to meet new friends, hear of great new books to read, meet and discuss authors, and many other topics.  Can’t say enough good things about it.

I hope you’ll come back.  Until we meet again, I remain,

Your Bookish Dame