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Aftermath of a Blogger’s Illness Part 2 – Reviews Galore!

28 Jun

Hello blogging world. I feel like I haven’t seen you in a while. Sadly I’ve been sick for as long as I’ve been out of school. At first I thought I was getting better but then – nope. It turns out I had pneumonia and the doctor I was seeing “missed” it (my mom took me to a different doctor because she knew something was not right with me… well besides the usual). I am happy to say that after 14 days of 101+ fevers, I was fever free yesterday! WOO!  I am sad to say, I’ve not been able to keep up with commenting and posting and reading everyone’s wonderful blogs like I usually do (I got around a little, but not much), but things should be back to normal now. :) I have one more multi-post that I will do to catch up on all the things I got behind on! Here we go –

The winner of the Guardian Herd: LANDFALL by Jennifer Alvarez Swag Pack is:

GuardianHerd_3_final cover

Front of Tote

Front of Tote

Maureen Verone!!!!

Congratulations! I will be emailing you to get the address of where to send you your goodies!

NOW ON TO THE REVIEWS!

shiversShivers! The Pirate Who’s Afraid of Everything

Written by

Illustrated by

192 pages – ages 8+

Published by HarperCollins on February 24, 2015

Synopsis- Shivers is a pirate. His mom is a pirate, his dad is a pirate, and his big brother is a pirate. It runs in the family. So why is Shivers afraid of everything that can do anything on this world? And if that’s not bad enough, why did his entire family have to be captured while sailing the high seas, leaving only Shivers and his pet fish, Albee, to rescue them. But then Margo comes along. Her dad is chief police officer, and she’s almost as good as him! Will Margo be enough to whip Shivers into shape?

What I Thought- This was a hilarious early chapter book! I read it while I was stuck in bed because I was sick, and I read it in an afternoon. It really cheered my spirits up. Shivers is a great character, and he’ll make you laugh! The book has random chapters missing, or blotted out, but all with a purpose, and they add humor (for example, the last page of Chapter 5 is blotted with “squid ink” because they were being attacked by an angry squid). I like how Margo, Shivers’ best friend, helps him on his adventures, taking control of a “frightening” situation. It’s a nice touch that she’s a girl. The book is wacky and slightly unbelievable, and kids will learn a little about the Statue of Liberty. Story-book pirates still exist in modern-day New Jersey and New York City, and they sail around looking for the treasure in the Statue of Liberty’s torch. This is a really funny book!

I give this five out of five bookworms!fivebooks

~

The Bewundering World of Bewilderbeests coverThe Bewundering World of Bewilderbeests

By Bailey Fort

ebook  (picture book) – ages 5+

Published by Fortify Books on March 23, 2015

Synopsis- In the East, over the high seas, lays a land you’ve never seen before. It hosts marvelous creatures that normally only exist in your imagination. Discover wild beasts that make you laugh, like the Two-Headed Mugwump, and others that you just think are cool, like the Millipus. Journey to the bewundering world of the bewilderbeests in this picture book!

What I Thought- This was a creative book. Ms. Fort has made a nice picture book. The creatures are whimsical and the illustrations are bright and marvelous. Kids will really like them. They capture the spirit of the book. The book is available as an ebook and the illustrations come out pretty well digitally. The repetitive rhyme in the poems are fun to read. They get your imagination going.

I give this four out of five bookworms.fourbooks

~

Solve-A-CrimeYOU DO THE MATH: Solve A Crime

Written by Hilary Koll and Steve Mills

Illustrated by Vladimir Aleksic

 

  • Series: You Do the Math

 

32 pages – ages 6+

Published by QEB Publishing on April 1, 2015

Synopsis- When a crime is reported, you are called upon to do the math to find out who broke into the safe in an apartment. You then learn about fingerprinting, DNA, alibis, video footage, etc. In math skills you learn about pie charts, fractions, timelines, area, etc. You learn many more skills of both types. Can YOU solve the crime?

What I Thought- This was a really cool book! This series shows you how you will have to use math to do a job well. The job in this book is a police officer/detective. I like how it goes through the crime, and gives you math problems related to what is going on in the case. You learn a lot about crime solving, and just plain old math problems. This book is appropriate for young advanced readers, but does mention blood (but no murder is committed (it mentions it in a statistic)), and using it for a DNA test. There are answers in the back of the book, including a glossary and index too. All in all, it’s a really cool book!

I give this book five out of five bookworms!fivebooks

hospitalThe Berenstain Bears: Hospital Friends

By Mike Berenstain

23 pages – ages 5+

Published by HarperCollins on April 21, 2015

Synopsis- When the Bear family goes to pay their well-wishes to a young family member at a hospital, they get curious about what really goes on in a hospital. Luckily, the family doctor is willing to give a tour of the hospital, explaining how they worked.

What I Thought- This is a nice book. It gives a tour of the average hospital, with operating rooms, x-ray rooms, kid (or “cub”) playrooms, etc. I like that this book helps with the fact that some kids might be afraid of hospitals, but they are actually nice places. The illustrations have that timeless Berenstain feel. It is really cool how the newer stories keep all of the elements we like about the original books. I really liked this book. I think, if anything, that hospitals should all carry a copy of this book, at least in their kids’ section.

BONUS – from the publisher – “All of the author’s royalties are being contributed to the Stan & Jan Berenstain Healthy Kids Foundation, a charitable organization devoted to children’s health issues.”

I give this book five out of five bookworms!fivebooks

Review and Giveaway! The Princess and the Pony by Kate Beaton #PonyTime

25 Jun

 

Princess and the Pony FINAL TEXT.pdfThe Princess and the Pony

By Kate Beaton

40 pages – ages 4+

Will be published by Arthur A. Levine Books on June 30, 2015

Synopsis- From the Publisher: “Princess Pinecone knows exactly what she wants for her birthday this year. A BIG horse. A STRONG horse. A horse fit for a WARRIOR PRINCESS! But when the day arrives, she doesn’t quite get the horse of her dreams…

princess-and-the-pony-1

From the artist behind the comic phenomenon Hark! A Vagrant, The Princess and the Pony is a laugh-out-loud story of brave warriors, big surprises, and falling in love with one unforgettable little pony.

What I Thought- This was a cute picture book set in viking times. Princess Pinecone is a young princess whose parents don’t seem to understand that she’s a warrior princess. They give her cozy sweaters instead of armor and warrior stuff.

PrincessandPony2

I like how this book is about being yourself, and not what society says you are. It also shows that you can make the best out of any situation… and it has farting ponies ha ha ha. The illustrations have just the right amount of detail and they add to the humor in the story. The story isn’t about girls not being able to be warriors – there are plenty pictures in the illustrations. It’s just that Princess Pinecone’s seems to have been labeled more princess than warrior. The twist in the story (at the battle scene) was unexpected, and made me laugh. The book reminds me of one of those fractured fairy tale cartoons. Overall very cute story with a nice message.

princess-pinecone-pony3

I give this book five out of five bookworms.fivebooks

About the Author

Photo credit: Notker Mahr.

Photo credit: Notker Mahr.

Kate Beaton is the author of Hark! A Vagrant, her #1 New York Times bestselling collection of comics which began as a webcomic in 2007. The Princess and the Pony is her first picture book. She is the recipient of multiple Harvey awards, andher work has been featured in the New Yorker, Harper’s, and The Best American Comics Anthology. Kate lives in Toronto,and you can find her online at www.beatontown.com and on Twitter as @beatonna.

LEARN MORE

Learn more at Scholastic.com

Visit the author at BeatonTown.com

Follow Kate Beaton on Twitter

NOT YOUR AVERAGE PRINCESS prize pack!!!!!!! Thanks to the great people at Scholastic, I get to give away TWO copies of THE PRINCESS AND THE PONY !!!

Giveaway open to US addresses only. Prizing provided by Scholastic.

All you have to do is comment and next week on July second, I will pick two winners out of all the comments – pretty easy peasy huh? :) Good Luck!

BLOG TOUR AND GIVEAWAY! Vanishing Island by Barry Wolverton

22 Jun

vanishing island preview tour banner updated

I am very excited to share this book with you. It is the beginning to a very promising series and even better – one of you will get to win a signed ARC of the book! Details of the giveaway are at the bottom of the post. :)

VanishingIslandHC

Vanishing Island
By Barry Wolverton
Book 1 of the Chronicles of the Black Tulip
352 pages – ages 8+
Will be published by Walden Pond Press on September 1, 2015

 

Publisher’s Summary- Does  the Vanishing Island really exist? And if so, what treasure—or terrible secret—was hidden by its disappearance?

It’s 1599, the Age of Discovery in Europe. But for Bren Owen, growing up in the small town of Map on the coast of Britannia has meant anything but adventure. Enticed by the tales sailors have brought through Map’s port, and inspired by the arcane maps his father creates as a cartographer for the cruel and charismatic map mogul named Rand McNally, Bren is convinced that fame and fortune await him elsewhere. That is, until his repeated attempts to run away land him a punishment worse than death—cleaning up the town vomitorium.

It is there that Bren meets a dying sailor, who gives him a strange gift that hides a hidden message. Cracking the code could lead Bren to a fabled lost treasure that could change his life forever, and that of his widowed father. But to get there he will have to tie his fate to a mysterious Dutch admiral obsessed with a Chinese legend about an island that long ago disappeared from any map.

Before long, Bren is in greater danger than he ever imagined, and will need the help of an unusual friend named Mouse to survive. Barry Wolverton’s thrilling adventure spans oceans and cultures, brings together the folklore of East and West, and proves that fortune is always a double-edged sword.

What I Thought- This was an amazing book! It had adventure, comedy, excitement, mystery – pretty much anything you could want in a book! Bren is a character you would like to meet in real life. He has dreams, and he’s clever in how he gets them achieved. Mouse is a cool character too. I really like how Mr. Wolverton doesn’t hide that sea isn’t always exciting – at times Bren is just sitting around at sea. There is death throughout the story, but it is not graphic/gory. There are some illustrations that will be put in the final version of the book, but not in the ARC that I read (they weren’t in yet), and they play a role in the story, so that was sad for me. Guess I’ll have to get the completed version! This is a solid start to a new series. :)

WHO IS THIS BARRY WOLVERTON?!?

Barry Wolverton Author Photo

Barry Wolverton is the author of Neversink. He has more than fifteen years’ experience creating books, documentary television scripts, and website content for international networks and publishers, including National Geographic, Scholastic.com, the Library of Congress, and the Discovery Networks. He lives in Memphis, Tennessee. You can visit him online at www.barrywolverton.com.

Links for Barry Wolverton: 

Website: http://www.barrywolverton.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/wolvertonhill

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/bwolverton

Instagram: https://instagram.com/wolvertonhill/

Check out all the stops on this awesome tour!

Blog Tour Schedule: 

6/15 Blue Stocking Thinking:  bluestockingthinking.blogspot.com
6/16 The Haunting of Orchid Forsythia:  hauntedorchid.blogspot.com
6/17 Small Review:  smallreview.blogspot.com
6/18 Maria’s Melange:  www.mariaselke.com/
6/19 Unleashing Readers:  unleashingreaders.com
6/19 The Hiding Spot:  thehidingspot.blogspot.com
6/22 This Kid Reviews Books:  thiskidreviewsbooks.com
6/23 Mundie Kids:  http://mundiekids.blogspot.com/
6/24 Page in Training:  https://pageintraining.wordpress.com
6/25 Novel Novice:  novelnovice.com

BLOG TOUR PAGE HERE!

Connect to Walden Pond –
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ WaldenPondPress
Facebook: https://www. facebook.com/WaldenPondPress

Website/Blog: http://www. walden.com/books/

Pinterest: https://www. pinterest.com/waldenpondpress/

NOW FOR THE GIVEAWAY!

All you have to do is comment in the comment section below telling me you want to WIN! (well you can comment somewhere else, but I won’t see it) and on June 29th I will pick one name out of a hat of all the entrants. US residents only please. Good Luck!

VanishingIslandHC

 

Review! Mahalia Jackson: Walking with Kings and Queens by Nina Nolan

20 Jun

mahalaMahalia Jackson: Walking with Kings and Queens

Written by Nina Nolan

Illustrated by John Holyfield

32 pages – ages 4+

Published by Amistad on January 27, 2015

Synopsis- Mahalia Jackson was a young girl with a ginormous voice. Even while life was tough for her, she still sang what she loved, and she loved gospel. She always sang, and she realized her voice had power. Even though she had to overcome a lot of hardships in her life, she got to sing on TV shows, at Carnegie Hall, and many places she could only dream of! She became and is still know as the Queen of gospel music.

Check out the video below – you’ll know why she got the title!

What I Thought- This is a really motivational picture book that will have you feeling positive. The story of Mahalia Jackson, from cleaning-maid to Queen of Gospel, is truly inspiring. The story stresses perseverance, and working towards a goal. Mahalia, no matter where she was, or how her life was, always sang. The illustrations are gorgeous and make you really smile inside. They capture the spirit of a girl with a goal perfectly and using the talents you are given. The book has a short timeline and more ways to learn about Mahalia at the end of the book. The publisher has the age range as 4+ – this is a great book as an introduction to this fabulous lady and perfect for a younger kid. The resources at the back of the book are a great add-on for older kids.

I give this five out of five bookworms!fivebooks

Now excuse me I am going to go download some Mahalia Jackson from iTunes. ;)

Review-o-Rama! or The Aftermath of a Blogger’s Illness

18 Jun

HELLO BLOGGING WORLD!

So I have been sick since Sunday which is weird because I pretty much never get sick. I’ve had a 104 fever until Wednesday. Today it’s down to like just over 100 but I feel a bunch better… and I’m pretty hungry and a shower after laying on the couch 24/7 for four days felt pretty good – so I think I’ll live.

“Why are you telling me this Erik?” you ask.

Well maybe you didn’t but let’s pretend you did. I am telling you so you’ll know why I am posting a bunch of reviews at once – I missed posting on a few days (except Wednesday because that one was written a while ago and I had a guest) – hey if you didn’t read it click on over – click HERE – plus that post has the honor of being my 1000th post of my blogging “career.” ;)

SOOOO HERE WE GO!

nerd12_2Close Encounters of the Nerd Kind

Nerdy Dozen Book #2

By Jeff Miller

272 pages – ages 8+

Published by HarperCollins; Reprint edition on March 10, 2015

Synopsis- Neil Andertol is an expert video-gamer. He’s in the top twelve in the US. And he’s only a kid. He and the other top players (also kids) were recruited by the US Air Force, in order to stop an evil plot (thought out by a wayward genius kid). Now they are joining NASA to recover a top-of-the-line space shuttle that was stolen. It doesn’t help that another giant asteroid (like the one that may have killed the dinosaurs) is supposed to hit Earth in about two weeks…

What I Thought- This was an amazing book! I honestly don’t know how I missed book one! This book brings you up to speed, so reading book one isn’t necessary, but it would make some minor points clearer. Neil is a great character, who, while not perfect, is extremely realistic. The other nerds in the book are people you would probably like to meet in real life. I know I would! It’s pretty cool how all the kids are expert video-gamers, and because of it, they are government secret mission pilots. That would be neat if it would ever happen (or maybe it did, but it’s a secret). Mr. Miller’s writing style has a good mixture of humor, adventure, vivid descriptions, wit, and great characters for an overall enjoyable experience.

I give this book five out five bookworms!fivebooks

zariaZaria Fierce

By Kiera Gillett

224 pages – ages 9+

Published by Keira Gillett on March 6, 2015

Synopsis- Zaria Fierce was not fierce. Or so she thought, that is, until a river troll kidnaps her best friend. Then she, pitted together with his other friends (one of whom is actually a changeling (a creature swapped for a look-alike human)), goes on an adventure up the river, into a world mixed with the modern world and the ancient myths of Scandinavia.

What I Thought- This was a really good book with a great setting and cool plot line. I really liked how it didn’t hide that Zaria was adopted and she knew it . I also liked how her adoptive parents were nice. You don’t see that often in books (as an adopted kid, I like it when adoption is portrayed well). The characters and mythology are realistic, and the mythology was well explained, too. I like how Zaria tries her best to make do in a world she knew nothing about. There are some instances of d*** throughout the second half of the book that some parents may have issues with for younger kids. This was a good book and I will be looking for book 2.

I give this four out of five bookworms.fourbooks

HEY IT’S ALSO ….

CREATIVE KID THURSDAY!!! WOO!

My Creative Kid guest is JOSIE my little sister. ;)

Today Josie is doing a guest review.

peridotThe Peridot Pendant

By Emma Homes

75 pages – ages 9+
Published by Spark Street Communications Pty Ltd on April 17, 2015

 

Summary (from Amazon) Fabrina is devastated when her mother suddenly vanishes. When she stumbles across her mother’s necklace, Fabrina sets out to untangle the mystery of her disappearance. With feisty best friend Vicky, bookish boy-next-door Harry, and her enigmatic cat Mr Whiskers, Fabrina begins to unlock the secrets of her mother’s magical green pendant.

A fast-paced fantasy where stories from long ago are entwined with present, ‘The Peridot Pendant’ is an imaginative tale that will appeal to children nine years and older.

What Josie Thought – This story was cool. I thought it was going to be a mystery but it had fairies in it and the people traveled to another world. I liked Fabrina. She is smart and brave. I liked Vivky and Harry too. They were all goo characters. The Red Cap guy was creepy (the evil fairy that kept her mom). I liked that there was magic in the story and how Fabrina could travel to different worlds. The book wasn’t too long for me, some of the words were kind of hard but I used my kindle dictionary to help me. I liked how well all the characters are described and all about the fairy world. It was a good book to read.

I give it five bookworms fivebooks

 

Perfect Picture Book Friday! Beach House by Deanna Caswell

12 Jun

Susanna Leonard Hill has a feature on her blog called Perfect Picture Book Friday. It is a list of “perfect” picture books recommended by all sorts of people. I chose this book because summer breaks are starting everywhere, and families are going on vacations a lot.

beachBeach House
Written by Deanna Caswell
Illustrated by Amy June Bates
32 pages – ages 3+
Published by Chronicle Books on May 12, 2015

Theme/Topic- going to the beach / waiting

Genre- Realistic Fiction

Opening and Synopsis- Opening

“A long, long drive.
It’s been a year
of dreaming, waiting.
Summer’s here.

Synopsis – from GoodReads: “In a funny and heartfelt celebration of family, vacations, and the joy of the sea, Deanna Caswell and Amy June Bates capture the essence of summer—building sand castles, jumping the waves, and watching the stars come out after a long day at the beach—and the love that warms every moment.

Why I picked this book- This is a really well done summer book. The characters are never named, which is a great touch. The warm feeling the watercolors generate is perfect for this book. I really enjoyed this book, and the rhyme in it had a soft, there-but-not-there feel. This was a great book I would recommend to any family going on vacation to read (whether on vacation or not) or if you just want to dream about warm summer days. :)

Activities and Resources-

I found a cute seashell fish craft for kids on the Crafts by Amanda blog – click HERE

Education.com had a list of 10 Super Sand Activities HERE

To find more Perfect Picture Books please visit Susanna Hill’s blog HERE!

Here are some other great summer books you may want to look for!

onmybeachOn My Beach
By Sara Gillingham
Illustrated by Lorena Siminovich
Puppet board book – ages 2+
Published by Chronicle Books on May 19, 2015

What I Thought- This is a cute board book. It gives a little about a day in the life of a crab, and also gets kids interacting, with the puppet it has.

~

aquaAqualicious
By Victoria Kann
Series: Pinkalicious
pages – ages 5+
Published by HarperFestival on March 3, 2015

What I Thought- This was a great book! It was cool how the mermaid/merminnie in the book was an “actual” thing at the beach for Pinkalicious and her family to see, and not just in Pinkalicious’ imagination. This is a really cool series!

~

paddingtonbeachPaddington at the Beach
Written by Michael Bond
Illustrated by R.W. Alley
32 pages – ages 3+
Published by HarperCollins on June 30, 2009

What I Thought- The Paddington books are a great series. I like how this book slightly encourages counting (seagull #1, etc.), and has a funny ending. The illustrations help make this a good book, too!

 

~

 

 

 

chubeachChu’s Day at the Beach
Written by Neil Gaiman
Illustrated by Adam Rex
32 pages – ages 3+
Published by HarperCollins on April 7, 2015

What I Thought- This was a really cute book. I like that the animals WANT Chu to sneeze again, even though his first sneeze messed the beach up. It was nice.

~

 

intowavesIn the Waves
Written by Lennon and Maisy Stella
Illustrated by Steve Björkman
40 pages – ages 3+
Published by HarperCollins on April 28, 2015

What I Thought- This was a great interpretation of a song by Lennon and Maisy Stella. Lennon and Maisy are the stars of the ABC TV show, Nashville. The illustrations are fun and really cool!

From HaperCollins –

Head to www.harpercollinschildrens.com/inthewaves to listen and sing along as the girls gather their boogie boards and sip homemade lemonade.”

Vietnamese Children’s Favorite Stories retold by Tran Thi Minh Phuoc

9 Jun

vietnameseVietnamese Children’s Favorite Stories

Retold by Tran Thi Minh Phuoc

Illustrated by Nguyen Thi Hop & Nguyen Dong

96 pages – ages 5+

Published by Tuttle Publishing on April 14, 2015

Synopsis- Vietnamese folklore is rather extensive, but author Phuoc Thi has gathered several of the more well-known children’s folklore, and put them into one book. There is a wide variety of tales, but some revolve around the Vietnamese New Year. It also includes some Vietnamese vocabulary.

What I Thought- This was a cool collection of stories. I love how the stories helped explain Vietnamese traditions and culture. I learned about the Vietnamese new year celebration, and why a certain flower is popular, and why they don’t sweep their houses during the celebrations. These are great stories for bedtime, and are wonderful for a multicultural unit. There is even a story similar to our Cinderella. The illustrations are gorgeous. They catch the feel of the story perfectly, and they really bring the tales to life.

viet3

Image from Tuttle Publishing Click image to go to book’s page

All in all, I would really recommend this book!

I give this book 5 out of 5 bookworms!fivebooks

Perfect Picture Book Friday! Rory the Dinosaur: Me and My Dad by Liz Climo

5 Jun

Susanna Leonard Hill has a feature on her blog called Perfect Picture Book Friday. It is a list of “perfect” picture books recommended by all sorts of people. I chose this book because it is really cute and a good pick for father’s day.

roryRory the Dinosaur: Me and My Dad
By Liz Climo
40 pages – ages 3+
Published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers on May 5, 2015

Theme/Topic- Father-Son Bonding

Genre- Fiction

Opening and Synopsis- Opening – “This is Rory.”

Synopsis – From Goodreads: “Meet Rory, the dinosaur. He loves spending time with his dad, but today he wants to go on his own adventure and explore his island home. He can’t wait to tell his dad all about the things he can do all by himself, from crossing rivers to finding shelter from the rain. Little does Rory know, his father is never far behind. There’s nothing Rory’s dad won’t do for his intrepid son–he’ll even let him think he’s made the journey all by himself.

Why I liked this book- This is probably one of the best family-bonding picture books I’ve read this year. I like how, even though Rory is going on an adventure, he still “listens” to his dad (Rory “isn’t allowed to swim without his dad.”) and follows his rules. Rory is a good kid. The illustrations include some humor for adults/older readers (like the titles on the books Rory’s dad reads – “Roar and Peace” :) ) The book is a great story about parents watching our for their kids ut still letting them have an adventure. All in all, it’s a great mixture of fun for everyone.

Activities and Resources- 

Think about a time when you and your dad had an “adventure”. Then write about it! (It’s okay to exaggerate a little) For example, once my dad and I were walking through the woods, and we stumbled upon a flock of turkeys;

The forest was silent. A man and child crept through the woods. It was now or never – gobble gobble gobble! A huge flock of giant turkeys came out and starting attacking the humans with ninja moves and fast reflexes. The man was scared, but the boy was not. He knew what to do. HI-YAH! And Thanksgiving was plentiful.

;)

Since Father’s Day is approaching, why don’t you make a homemade card for your dad?

I see Ms. Climo has another book coming out in October – I already have it on my TBR list – mostly because of the title. ;)

lobster

To find more Perfect Picture Books please visit Susanna Hill’s blog HERE!

Perfect Picture Book Friday! Rude Cakes by Rowboat Watkins

29 May

Susanna Leonard Hill has a feature on her blog called Perfect Picture Book Friday. It is a list of “perfect” picture books recommended by all sorts of people. I chose this book because it really gets its point across!


rudecakeRude Cakes

By Rowboat Watkins
40 pages – ages 3+
Will be Published by Chronicle Books on June 2, 2015 (ARC reviewed)

Theme/Topic- Manners / Being nice

Genre- Fiction

Opening and Synopsis- Opening – “Rude cakes never say please, [Gimme]

Synopsis – From Goodreads: Who knew that cakes were so rude?! In this deliciously entertaining book, a not-so-sweet cake—who never says please or thank you or listens to its parents—gets its just desserts. Mixing hilarious text and pictures, Rowboat Watkins, a former Sendak fellow, has cooked up a laugh-out- loud story that can also be served up as a delectable discussion starter about manners or bullying, as it sweetly reminds us all that even the rudest cake can learn to change its ways.

Why I liked this book- This is a really fun picture book. It has cakes and cyclopses – what’s not to like? I like how it cleverly teaches young kids to be nice and use their manners. The pictures are cute and funny. They also help get the point across.

rudecake2

This is one of the most clever picture books on manners that I’ve seen! It uses baked goods and giant cyclopses to explain how you can be well mannered – how do people think of these things?!?

Activities and Resources- 

Chronicle Books has supplied a ton of activities to go along with the book. You can download an activity kit – HERE.

Get a sharing poster HERE.

rudecake3You can also download a phenakistoscope (fen-uh-kissed-oh-skope – my new word of the day) template and make a magic wheel animation of rude cakes HERE!

rudecake5

To find more Perfect Picture Books please visit Susanna Hill’s blog HERE!

Review! Jake G. Panda in The Case of the Cursed Dodo by Jake G. Panda

28 May

pandaJake G. Panda in The Case of the Cursed Dodo – A Jungle Noir

By Jake G. Panda

Series: The Endangerd Files [#1]

180 pages – ages 8+

Published by Woolly Family Studios on November 23, 2014

Synopsis- Jake G. Panda is the private investigator at the Wildlife’s Last Resort, a hotel for endangered species. He makes it his business to know business. When an old-time friend, an eccentric professor, calls, and is abruptly cut off, Jake knows something is up. And thus begins an adventure fit for a king! Jake travels through jungle, camp, desert, air, and many more exotic locations to get this case solved! He meets several new animal friends, and makes several animal enemies. All this, in a search to bring a lost suitcase to its owner.

What I Thought- This is a really cool detective/private investigator book. It has a slightly dark edge to it, but it works well with the story line. I like how the book includes some basic movie script-terms (FADE IN/OUT; CUT IN/OUT; etc.) to transition the book forward. It really mixes well with the storyline. There is a “warning” at the beginning claiming the book is a movie, and to sit back and enjoy it! The book has cool B&W illustrations that scatter throughout the chapters. They capture the characters’ emotions perfectly. The cover is really cool too. It has an artificial “weathering” on the cover. I didn’t realize it at first, it was that realistic! I like the fact that 95% of the characters are endangered/supposedly extinct animals, so you learn a few things without realizing. All in all, it’s a great story – great look – great book – and definitely worth the read.

I give this 5 out of 5 bookworms!fivebooks

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