There is no Frigate like a Book - Emily Dickinson


Call Me By Your Name

Posted by Professor G on March 9, 2018 at 2:25 AM Comments comments (1)

Cerebral and carnal.

Call Me By Your Name by André Aciman (professor at the Graduate Center of City University of New York) was first published in 2007 and has recently seen a major surge in popularity thanks to the release of the transcendent film of the same name.

Rarely is a film able to hold ground with its literary counterpart, but in this case both the novel and the film are each legends of their own merit. Both complimentary and independent, the novel and film are lovingly intertwined both offering their own insight and emotions serving only to augment and not detract from the other.

The novel, a Proustian styled romance as told from the recollections of its main character Elio, unguardedly recounts the events of Elio’s first love during an Italian summer some 20 years prior. Aciman transports and immerses the reader into the emotional and tender realm of the awakenings of a boy on the cusp of becoming a man struggling with identity, desire, love and loathing.

The film, expertly directed by Luca Gaudagnino with a screenplay by James Ivory, is a slow-burning, emotive visualization of the angst of first love. The outstanding performances of Timothée Chalamet (Elio Perlman), Armie Hammer (Oliver) and Michael Stuhlbarg (Elio’s father) only lend further depth to the rich tapestry of the emotional longing and turmoil laid out in the source novel.

A new page on EnglishCaddy has been created to host different book and film activities for English learners and lovers of the story in general.  Many of these activities are designed to help develop a personal relationship with the story, and find some of the deeper conections we find with the summer story of Oliver and Elio.  Click here to visit the Call Me By Your Name page on EC.

Experience the novel, the film or both. As Elio confirms while trying to rationalize his sexual feelings, “We are not written for one instrument alone; I am not, and neither are you.”, and neither is this this story.

Game of Thrones Bookmark Project

Posted by Professor G on June 7, 2013 at 5:35 AM Comments comments (2)

Are you a fan of the saga A Song of Ice and Fire?  Why not class up your books with some high quality classy bookmarks with a fun project you can do easily with just a few supplies.

What you will need:

  • A color printer
  • Card stock or thick photo paper
  • Scissors or an exacto knife
  • A ruler or straight edge
  • Templates (pdf)


  • A paper hole punch
  • Metal eyelets (from any craft or sewing goods store)
  • Hammer
  • Ribbon
  • Tassels
  • Beads
  • Leather rawhide laces or strips
  • A larger sewing needle (to pull the strips or ribbons through the beads)

The Templates:  here are two templates that you can download and print.  You can print them double-sided on both A4 and American 8 1/2" by 11", just adjust the template proportionally to fit the maximum width of your landscape size paper.

Look at the pictures above to get some ideas but really all you need is your imagination to adorn the bookmarks once you've printed them. For even more ideas, simply go to your local craft or sewing goods store.

The Templates:  There are 2 ways you can download the templates:

  1. Right click on the individual images below and save them to your computer, you can then insert these into any word processing or photo editing software and adjust the sizes.
  2. Click on the link PDF.  There you can download a double-sided PDF file that you can simply print.  Follow the instructions of your printer for printing double-sided documents.

Template 1 PDF (both sides)    Template 2 PDF (both sides)

Template 1 (front):

Template 1 (back):

Template 2 (front):

Template 2 (back):

Once you've printed your bookmarks, simply cut them out and adorn! That's all there is to it! 

If you have any questions, suggestions or ideas please feel free to leave a comment below.

Happy Reading!!!

For more Game of Thrones activities, visit:  The Game of Thrones English Challenge page.

Game of Thrones: The Next English Challenge!

Posted by Professor G on April 1, 2013 at 4:40 PM Comments comments (0)

Not much to say :D  Check out the preview of the next English Challenge!

"When you play the game of thrones, you win or you die."

Moby-Dick - Herman Melville

Posted by Professor G on January 2, 2013 at 7:40 AM Comments comments (0)

One of the most celebrated American novels of all time - Moby-Dick; or, The Whale is often discussed but not often read. However the people at The Big Read have created a wonderful solution to this problem!

Available in serialized form, famous authors and celebrities will each take one chapter and read it aloud; these chapters will then be published and available for downloading at the rate of one per day. All completely free!

“I try all things, I achieve what I can.”

Having multiple readers has lent a unique property to the novel; each reader brings their voice, their passion, their professionalism and their character to each chapter.

Included among the guest readers are: David Cameron (Ch. 30), Stephen Fry (Ch. 10), Fiona Shaw (Ch. 25), David Attenborough (Ch. 105), Tilda Swinton (Ch. 1), John Waters (Ch. 95) and many more! 

A great way to make literature accessible and enjoyable for all!


Listen to a sample extract from the project, Chapter 58: Brit as read by Benedict Cumberbatch.

You need Adobe Flash Player to view this content.

From Wikipedia:

"Moby-Dick; or, The Whale is a novel by Herman Melville, first published in 1851. It is considered to be one of the Great American Novels and a treasure of world literature. The story tells the adventures of wandering sailor Ishmael, and his voyage on the whaleship Pequod, commanded by Captain Ahab. Ishmael soon learns that Ahab has one purpose on this voyage: to seek out Moby Dick, a ferocious, enigmatic white sperm whale. In a previous encounter, the whale destroyed Ahab's boat and bit off his leg, which now drives Ahab to take revenge."

Free copies text copies of Moby-Dick are available in the Library @ EnglishCaddy.

Banned Books Week

Posted by Professor G on September 27, 2012 at 11:15 AM Comments comments (0)

Every year in the United States and other countries, there are many attempts to censor what we can read.

For the past 30 years the American Library Association (ALA) has been fighting to make these censorship attempts counter-productive by promoting the books people and organizations have requested be removed from circulation.

Celebrate your freedom to read.

Join the ALA in their 30-year fight for fREADom during Banned Books Week (Sept. 30 - Oct. 6, 2012).

For more information please visit the ALA Banned Books Week or EnglishCaddy's Banned Books page.

Have you read a banned book?

EnglishCaddy Announces This Year's Theme

Posted by Professor G on September 20, 2012 at 3:15 AM Comments comments (0)

Hello everyone!

La Rentrée 2012 is just behind us now, and you are most likely settling into your routine at your respective shools. 

The purpose of this blog entry is to briefly talk about what to expect this year on EnglishCaddy....

First off, I would like to announce this year's theme for EnglishCaddy....  The Hunger Games

This is an exciting novel by Suzanne Collins, and now a blocbuster film!  This story has taken the world by storm and garnered the respect of many critics including Stephen King!

So this year  many theme-based activities have been developed for your class and here on EC, concentrating on topics such as;

world hunger,


self discovery, and


For example...  here is a little game that will help increase your vocabulary and send rice to those in need..

Free Rice 2.0 is an organization that donates rice to hungry people around the world.  For each vocabulary question you get right, the sponsors of Free Rice will donate 10 grains of rice.  The site has sent over 96 billion grains of rice since it's inception.  You can play a part, it's completely free and you will increase your vocabulary as you play.

Try it out today!

A game everybody wins!

Let the games begin and don't forget to check back regularly for exciting new activities here on EnglishCaddy! 

Click here to visit the Hunger Games Theme Page on EnglishCaddy!


Posted by Professor G on March 2, 2012 at 6:35 PM Comments comments (0)

The benefits of reading can't be exaggerated!

In addition to improving your ability in any language (second languages included), reading regularly can:

  • Improve memory
  • Improve concentration
  • Increase vocabulary
  • Improve creative thinking
  • Improve analytical thinking
  • Improve writing skills
  • Reduce stress levels

Now this is just a short list.  The benefits obtained from reading are in many cases too numerable to mention in a blog, but such a list should be motivation in its own right to just simply read as much as you can. Click here for articles discussing reading benefits.

One of the chief objectives of EnglishCaddy is to provide its users access to a diverse and entertaining corpus of written works from full-length classical fiction to the latest in scientific publications and to bring them to you in different media formats.

"How can I begin to reap the benefits of reading?"

To take advantage of the benefits of reading you could set a fixed time each day where  you will slow down and read.  It helps too if you choose a well-lit comfortable place where you can focus on your reading.  And why not pamper yourself as well? Make yourself a nice hot chocolate or a cup of tea.  Remember reading is a reward! 

Keep track of your reading!  Download and print the English Reading Log to help you journal your reading and 'harvest' vocabulary words. A reading log will help you set goals for yourself and - when completed - be an object of pride!

"Today's readers are tomorrow's leaders."

You can't achieve success in life without obtaining knowledge, whether it be a university degree, a job promotion or a fulfilling hobby.  The written word is the most ubiquitous forms of shared human knowledge in the world.  Simply tapping into that knowledge will introduce you to worlds and information you never imagined and thereby guarantee your success in all that you endeavor.

So if you're looking to exercise your mental muscle, all you have to do is simply read!

Pertinent links:

English Reading Log page (information and resources)
Reading Activities (Reading exercises and activities on EnglishCaddy)
Library (Online multi-media library on EnglishCaddy)
Benefits of Reading (An article explaining how reading enhances lives)
Observations on the effects of reading Shakespeare.
New Library@EnglishCaddy (blog entry highlighting the new features of the online library.)

Have a Horrific Hallowe'en!

Posted by Professor G on October 31, 2011 at 4:00 AM Comments comments (0)

EnglishCaddy wishes you a frightful and chilling Hallowe'en!

And what is a holiday without presents?  Well not much of one at all!

So, on this dreadful day of grisly gouls and ghastly goblins your special gift will be a gruesome gift of  sickening suspense and tenuous terror by the master of macabre, Edgar Allan Poe and his petrifying piece, The Pit and the Pendulum!

So click the image below to get your free bloodcurdling book with ominous audio and a terrifying  translation into fearsome French by none other than the famous French poet Charles Baudelaire.

Enjoy the book and have a horrendous Hallowe'en!!!



Posted by Professor G on October 10, 2011 at 5:55 AM Comments comments (0)

Hallowe'en is fast upon us and EngishCaddy is finally prepared with new pages and activities centered around the 3000 year old Celtic Holiday.


Curious about witches, ghosts and the super natural world?  12 new documentaries have been added just for Hallowe'en.  Watch them now if you dare, the page will disapear in November...

click here...

Books and Audio:

Listen and read some of the best horror stories in English!

click here...

Audio Dramas:

Some of the most macabre and horrific modern tales in audio theater.  Be careful of your imagination!!!

click here...

Thriller Film Festival:

The classic slasher and suspense films of yesteryear with directors like Hitchcock and Jackson.

click here...

So stay in your warm house and lock the door.  Just make sure there's no one else inside before you lock it.

Free eBooks on the Web

Posted by Professor G on May 21, 2011 at 5:00 AM Comments comments (2)

The world of reading is evolving.  This week Amazon announced that the sale of eBooks has surpassed that of print books.  With the progress in the technology and readability of eReaders the average reader has access to a wealth of books that they never have had before.  All you really need is an internet connection.

There are many sites out there that offer free eBooks, however the quality is of something to be wary when downloading such books.  In my opinion several things make a “bad” eBook, the worst being advertising, that’s right advertising.  Some eBook providers insert advertising in the book itself.  While reading you may be surprised to find a full-page ad on page 29.  While some would argue that this practice covers the cost of providing the book for free, I would prefer to enjoy my book ad free.

Another consideration is quality.  The word ‘quality’ seems oddly paired with something virtual like an eBook.  However, you can stumble upon some poorly edited and formatted versions of eBooks.  As most of the sources for free eBooks come from the efforts sites like Archive.org to digitize works in the public domain, there are unfortunately frequent problems that arise during the scanning process.  For example, letters can be mistaken for other letters, page formating can cause sentences to be cut, and in some cases entire pages may go missing, making the enjoyable  experience of reading a frustrating one.

The following sites are sites that have taken great care and even pride in providing quality eBooks free of charge.  This list is not exclusive and it is rather designed to share my experience in the hunt for free (and legal) eBooks.

1) Feedbooks

Feedbooks (feedbooks.com)

Founded in 2007 Feebooks was the first service to support the ePub format, now widely regarded as the standard for eBooks and eBook readers. Personally speaking Feedbooks is my default site when looking for something to read.  Their eBooks are top  quality well-edited and compatible with just about any eReaders on the market.  Downloading is straightforward and fast in all formats.

  • Languages offered: Eng., Fr., Ger. & Sp
  • Site readable in: Fr. & Eng.
  • Estimated number of free eBooks: English 6,475 ( 1,642 contemporary/creative commons & 4,834 classic/public domain) French 1,350
  • Formats available: PDF, Kindle & EPUB

2) Manybooks

Manybooks (manybooks.net)

Their slogan says it all “The best books at the best price: free!”    Manybooks' collection currently numbers at 29,000 free books either in the public domain or possessing a creative commons license.  They work closely with the Project Gutenberg and use conversion software to create the formats offered in their library.

  • Languages offered:  36 different languages
  • Site readable in: Eng.
  • Number of free eBooks: 29,000
  • Formats offered: EPUB, Pdb, PDF, fb2, html, Kindle, mobipocket, txt & RTF (formats offered could vary with book)

3) Baen Free Library

Baen Books (baen.com)

Geared for the fans of Science Fiction and Fantasy.  The Baen Free Library provides a handful of quality eBooks by new and evolving authors.

  • Languages offered: Eng.
  • Site readable in: Eng.
  • Number of free eBooks: ~125
  • Formats offered: EPUB, RTF, Kindle, mobipocket, HTML, & RTF

4) Short Stories at East of the Web

Short Stories at East of the Web (short-stories.co.uk)

The site is limited in terms of formats available, but not at all limited in the variety and number of stories available.  Covering every genre of literature, they feature old and new authors alike, from classic to contemporary.  The site is easily searchable and intuitively designed for browsing.  Format is limited to HTML and PDB, but can easily be converted to a format compatible with an eBook reader.  NB: A great site for educators.

  • Languages offered: Eng.
  • Site readable in: Eng.
  • Number of free eBooks: Over 1000
  • Formats offered: HTML & PDB

5) Daily Lit

Daily Lit (dailylit.com)

A site and concept unlike all the others.  Basically reading by installment.  Choose a book from the wide selection of eBooks and have it delivered to you serialized in bite sized portions in a schedule you can handle.  For example, I experimented with the Scarlet Letter.  I chose to have a chapter delivered every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday at 2PM to my email address.  I’ve received 30 installments thus far with 53 yet to go.  The format is limited; by email or RSS, but easily convertible to eBook friendly formats, and if you have a smart phone, you can read each installment directly in your email client.

  • Languages offered: Eng., Fr., Ger., It., & Span.
  • Site readable in: Eng.
  • Number of free books: 947
  • Formats offered: Email & RSS

6) The Internet Archive

The Internet Archive (archive.org)

One of 2 of the most ambitious projects in cyberspace.  The Internet archive is dedicated to “offering permanent access for researchers, historians, scholars, people with disabilities, and the general public to historical collections that exist in digital format.”  The site is vast and while they continually receive new documents the current count of digitized texts is a whopping 2,186,449.  While the formats available vary with each book, generally the most used formats are available.  The only drawback can be the quality.  Again this varies book by book, since the digitizing process is automated the resulting text can contain many misreads by the scanner when converted into electronic formats.

  • Languages available: Every major world language and even dead languages
  • Site readable in: Eng.
  • Number of free eBooks: 2,186,449
  • Formats offered: EPUB, PDF, HTML, Kindle, Daisy, DjVU, MP3 et. al.

7) Project Gutenberg

Project Gutenberg (http://gutenberg.org)

Pretty much where it all began.  Way back in 1992 Project Gutenberg began digitizing books.  PG continues to digitize and make the books available to all as a source material for the creation of eBooks and print books.  PG’s mission simply stated is: “To encourage the creation and distribution of eBooks”.

  • Languages available: 59 different world languages
  • Site readable in: Eng. & Port.
  • Number of free eBooks: 33,000 from PG, +100,000 through partnerships and affiliates.
  • Formats offered: HTML, EPUB, Kindle, Plucker, .txt, et. al.

I hope you find this non-exclusive list useful. As this is just a list of sites that I’ve had experience with,  I will be appending this post as I discover new providers of free eBooks.  I would also like to invite you to list any sites that you would like to recommend to others in the comment section below.

Happy reading!!!

Original article can be found on (http://englishcaddy.wordpress.com)