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The Secret Garden

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This is a truly beautiful story about the power of change. A little girl's parents die and she is sent to live with her uncle in England, setting in motion a chain of events that will ultimately change the lives of many people.
The Outcast

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I approached this book with uncertainty based on reviews I had read. Once I began the first page, though, I was caught in the net of complicated characters and actions that all carried their consequences. There was not a single character whose life was left untouched by the others, some to their detriment, but others to their perceived salvation. True to life, the problems faced by these characters never came to a magical resolution, but instead shaped the people they would become...just as in real life. The book was superbly written with enough happiness at the end to leave the reader feeling comforted but not enough to ruin the story with a fairy tale ending.
A Long Way Gone

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I have spent a lot of time in war-torn countries, but I have never been able to see things through the eyes of one of the child-soldiers until now. This book is excellently written, and gave me a whole new perspective into the lives of these children. I may be a "softy" or "sentimental", but I went through a whole box of kleenex while reading the account of what it's like not only during the fighting, but before and after it as well. A very moving story.
1,000 Places to See in the United States and Canada Before You Die, updated ed.

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I have to say I was a little disappointed in this book. When I think of places that I absolutely must see, fancy hotels and expensive restaurants do not top my list. Having said that, though, there are still many places in this book that I did not know about and are now on my personal list of "must-see". I still feel that there are a lot of places that I am going to have to find out about elsewhere, but I'm sure there are people out there who would be glad to have the hotel and restaurant information as well.
You Can Cope With Neuropathy

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My initial interest in this book was due to the fact that I have been dealing with peripheral neuropathy for the last few years. I have been through a pain management course and was hoping that the book would offer some tips on how to decrease the pain even more. I was pleased to find so many suggestions in the book that fall under the cognitive and behavioral therapy categories rather than leaning heavily on drugs. There are some suggestions for drugs as well, but most of the suggestions in the book are centered more around improving life without them. There are several things here that I did not learn in my pain management course, and many more that I already knew but had forgotten. The book itself seems to be aimed towards people who have not yet been given much information about their condition, as well as towards the people who live with them and know nothing about how to make them more comfortable. In fact, there is an entire chapter specifically for caregivers. Since pacing your lifestyle is the most important aspect of pain management, I was very happy to find a whole chapter on what to do when you go on vacation and find pacing more difficult. There is also a quick-help section with FAQs for those who need help but don't have time to read the whole book at the moment. All in all, I would definitely recommend this book for anyone who would like to improve their lives without drugs...even if they do not have peripheral neuropathy.
The Secret Garden

by

This is a truly beautiful story about the power of change. A little girl's parents die and she is sent to live with her uncle in England, setting in motion a chain of events that will ultimately change the lives of many people.
The Wind in the Willows

by and

A charming book to read aloud to children while they color or play with toys...but maybe I think that because that is the way I was introduced to it as a child. As an adult, the story seems to have lost much of its magic, but that is most likely due to the different point of view. The story is about a group of animal friends and the adventures they have as they live on the banks of a river. They get into many scrapes, and work together to help each other get through each of them.
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