Elephants Can Be Quite Lovely

Happy Monday! After this week it is Thanksgiving vacation! Woooo! So looking forward to a week off. And eating. And shopping. And eating some more.

Congratulations to the winners of I'm SO Sure: Carrie Turansky and Colene. Ladies, just send me your mailing addys to jen at jennybjones dot com. Before I tell you about this week's contest, I must dish about a book you are going to want to read.

I read a fabulous book this weekend. So good I want to take a break from pushing my own book and tell you about it. Not that it needs help.

magician's elephant

I'm pretty sure I first heard about the book's fabulousness from author and expert blogger Natalie Lloyd. Not only does she have awesome things to say in her blog, but she often has great book recommendations. When Natalie talks books, I listen. And I finally picked up The Magician's Elephant. Oh, my gosh. I loooooved it. It's a quick read. It has pictures (always a selling point for me). And it is the most beautifully crafted tale ever. It's fairy tale like.  It's magical. It's hope-filled. It's about this boy whose parents are dead. And he lives with an old man who is not so kind and quite crazy. His mother died giving birth to his sister, and the old man told him his sister died as well. Yet the boy cannot leave it alone. He believes, he hopes, that his sister is alive. So he takes a great risk and goes to see a fortune teller. This fortune teller tells Peter to find his sister, he must follow the elephant. The elephant? What kind of craziness is that? Peter is thoroughly discouraged at the woman's cheap answer. . . until an elephant makes a rather starling appearance. And it doesn't just affect Peter's life. It affects the lives of a handful of people–lives that have been tied together with invisible string.

There are all kinds of random threads and characters in this book. And initially when you find a stray plot piece, you think “that's random and pointless.” But then…then you realize there is no character, no word, no detail wasted in this story. Everything is related in the most brilliant, sigh-inspiring way. This book was like a cozy bedtime story. Would be great read aloud. Would be great read in increments. It's considered juvenile lit, but I would recommend it for any age.  Here is a favorite line:

Looking out over the city, Peter decided that it was a terrible and complicated thing to hope, and that it might be easier, instead, to despair.

And isn't that the truth. Hoping is complicated, difficult business. The book is filled with themes of faith in the unseen, miracles, and about not wasting a single day. I loved it, loved it, loved it. Now I must go find Kate DiCamillo's Edward Tulane.

I'll be giving away a copy a little closer to Christmas, so stay tuned. It's a perfect gift type of book.

In the meantime, let's give away another copy of I'm So Sure. To spice up the haul, I'm adding a $25.00 Barnes and Noble gift card AND a mention in my acknowledgments if I use your answer. So book, gift card, and name droppage! Woo!  Here is the question for the week: If you could name a fake football team, what would it be called?

Let me give you a little background. In the book I'm writing (go NaNoWriMo! I'm not last!), I have a HDLI (hot dude love interest) who is a former professional football player. (Or some manly sport. I'm thinking football. Let's go with that for now.) Anyway, I don't want to put him on a real team. I need him to be from an imaginary team. And I need some help in coming up with this name. It's a lot harder than you might think.

So in order to get in the running for a copy of I'm So Sure And that 25 dollar gift card to Barnes and Noble AND a shout out in this future release, I need you to leave a suggestion for the team name. Or two. Or three. I will enter your name TWICE for every legit suggestion (manly sounding teams) and once for ones that make me laugh (like one I found on a fantasy football site–Roast Beef Curtains). One will actually be of use to me and one will make me laugh. Because sports–not a fun topic for me. And CHALLENGE yourself not to cheat too much and look up all those fantasy football sites and steal their names. Names like:

Moats n' Hoes (what? what the heck does that even mean? Don't you hate it when something strikes you as funny, but you have no idea what exactly you're laughing at?)
Tylenol Cold and Coughlin
Farve Dollar Footlong (love that one)
Flacco Seagulls
WD-Forte
I Dream of Mangini
Kibbles and Vick
I'm Brinnging Hasselbeck
My My Myyyy Bironas
Henne Nut Cheerios

Good stuff. None of it useful to me. I need something legit sounding like the Broncos, the Bears, the Cowboys. And those teams won't return my calls about letting me buy those names off of them. I mean, aren't they tired of them? Time for new ones!  But until they call. . .I must come up with my own. Can't wait to see your suggestions! You have until Friday at midnight to leave your comments. Winner announced next Monday.

Have a great week. I am on Thanksgiving vakay countdown. Buh-ring it.

See you Wednesday unless another snot plague takes over my body.

JEN
P.S. No, you can't suggest Snot Plague as a team name.

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