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The Platypus Police Squad Book 1: The Frog Who Croaked by Jarrett J. Krosoczka

15 Aug

ppsfrog

 

The Platypus Police Squad Book 1: The Frog Who Croaked

by Jarrett J. Krosoczka

240 pages – ages 8+
Published by Walden Pond Press on May 7, 2013

 

Rick Zengo was excited. It was his first day for his new job. Zengo was going to be joining Kalamazoo City’s police force, the Platypus Police Squad (PPS for short). He spilled some hot chocolate on his partner in the first hour. On the second hour, they get a case about an illegal fish exchange gone wrong. But, that’s not important. Nope, not at all. We’re talking about Zengo’s first hour at work. So… He spilled some hot chocolate on his grumpy (but kindly) partner, Corey O’Malley, and they both got made fun of by two over-confident platypi detectives (can someone lend a helping mouse? ;) Platypi or platypuses?). It was a perfectly normal hour. Nothing out of the ordinary. No wondering if the local billionaire panda is behind the fish exchange. No fretting over where the school professor was who apparently disappeared at the fish exchange. Not a minute spent over worrying that a night club owned by the billionaire panda is behind the illegal fish market. No pondering how many hot dogs Corey O’Malley can eat at a time. Nope. None of that. Now, on the other hand, about that second hour…

THIS WAS HILARIOUS!!! The title is a wonderfully done pun and a marvelous hooker! The book was well done and was fun to read. I read it in one day. Mr. Krosoczkais a great author who has a way of creating a wacky world that pulls you in and only lets you out when the mystery has been solved. Detective Rick Zengo is a great guy, er… platypus… who tries to do the best he can, even if he messes up sometimes. I love all the goofy characters in the book. This is a fun book! I already read Book 2 (see my review HERE) which prompted me to go back and read book 1. I am glad I did (and obviously you don’t have to read the books in order to enjoy them!)! I am already waiting for the third book…

yup still waiting…

…someone please tell Mr. Krosoczka I’m waiting…

okay, okay I’ll get on with it -

I give this book 5 out of 5 bookworms!fivebooks

 

What the Sleepy Animals Do at the Audubon Zoo REVIEW AND GIVEAWAY!

4 Aug

sleepyanimalsWhat the Sleepy Animals Do at the Audubon Zoo

by Grace Millsaps & Ryan Murphy

Illustrated by John Clark IV & Alyson Kilday

44 pages – ages 4+
Publisher: The Sleepy Animals, LLC; 1st edition  on July 15, 2013

This is an awesome picture book! What’s even better is I have TWO copies to give away to TWO lucky people! (Sorry US addresses only)

“Erik, How do we enter such an awesome give away?!?” you ask…

Well read to the bottom and find out!

Goodreads description -

Rhinos rock out. Alligators stroll under limbo polls. Elephants pound the piano. Pelicans cater.

Ever wonder why the animals at the zoo are always so sleepy? What the Sleepy Animals Do at the Audubon Zoo will answer your questions once and for all.

When Renee asks her father why the zoo animals are snoozing all day, he dreams up an elaborate answer. At night, the monkeys steal the zookeeper’s keys, and all of the animals come out of their cages to dance, eat, and play. By the time the visitors arrive in the morning, the animals are all tuckered out. Renee doesn’t believe her father’s tale, but dads have a way of being right about these things…”

What I thought- Who hasn’t wondered why the zoo animals are always sleepy? Well, you can find out in this hilarious book! The illustrations are big, bright, kooky and super fun to look at. You could read this book 5 times, and catch something new each time in each illustration! I swear that I have seen a dinosaur or two in the details! Even the end pages of the book are fun to look at. The pictures make it seem like you are right in the party with the animal! The story is great too! The rhyme is great, and is kind of sing-song when you read it. It makes the story fun to read! This book makes a great bedtime story – or for kids interested in animals or zoos. I would certainly read other books by this team! :)

I give this hilarious book 5 out of 5 bookworms!fivebooks

HOW DO I WIN A COPY OF THIS GREAT BOOK, ERIK?!?

Hey – I make it easy – just comment and say you’d like to be in the drawing. :) My sister will pick 2 lucky names out of a hat (US addresses only, please) and I will announce the winners on August 18th. Good Luck!

To learn more about this book, check out the website HERE!

Like the Sleepy Animals on Facebook HERE!

Find the Sleepy ANimals on Twitter HERE!

Check out this fun video about the book!

 

Check out more great Kid Lit posts at the Kid Lit Blog Hop! Click on the image to see more!

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The Hero’s Guide to Being an Outlaw by Christopher Healy: Blog Tour & Giveaway!

26 May
140425_hero_outlaw

Artwork © 2014 by Todd Harris

 

Be sure to add this book to your summer reading list! It’s the third book in one of my favorite series – “Hero’s Guide.” Don’t have the book yet?!? Well then just comment below and you’ll have the chance of winning a hard-cover AUTOGRAPHED copy of The Hero’s Guide to Being an Outlaw! WOO!!! Just tell me if you want to be in the drawing and, on June 2nd, I will announce the winner (sorry – U.S. addresses only). The winner is chosen by putting all the names in a hat and having my little sister Josie pull a name out.

PLUS:

Make sure you check back tomorrow because I get to reveal a new character bio from the book!

Now on to the review!

HG3 - Final CoverTHE HERO’S GUIDE TO BEING AN OUTLAW
by Christopher Healy
Illustrated by Todd Harris
528 pages – ages 8+
Series: Hero’s Guide (Book 3)
Published by Walden Pond Press on April 29, 2014

ABOUT THE HEROICS – Prince Liam. Prince Frederic. Prince Duncan. Prince Gustav. You think you know those guys pretty well by now, don’t you? Well, think again. The Princes Charming, along with Ella, Snow, Rapunzel, and Princess Lila are caught and arrested for the murder of Briar Rose. The heroes are simultaneously shocked and sad to hear of this news. But a series of suspicious events leads them to believe that not only is Briar still alive, but some unseen evil is working its way into the throne rooms of all thirteen kingdoms. It’s up to the League to break out of prison, find Briar, and uncover the nefarious plot before the entire country is destroyed.

Check out the trailer!

 

WHAT I THOUGHT –

BAH HA HA HA HA HA HA!!!!

The book is hilarious! I loved the first two books in the series and they just keep getting better. It’s credit to Mr. Healy that he can keep coming up with great things for these characters to do. The the humor along with action and adventure in the book kept me turning the pages – **literally I read all 528 pages over 2 days – I couldn’t put the book down. Mr. Healy has a great writing style. Even for kids who aren’t that into reading will love the book because of the story. The Prince Charming characters in the story are great main characters. I love how they are all different personality-wise but all want the same thing; their honor back. The book isn’t just for boys. I think girls will love the story just as much. I think the idea of the story and this series is super imaginative and completely fun.

This is one of those books where I wish my rating scale went higher than 5. Five out of five bookworms for “The Hero’s Guide to Being an Outlaw!”fivebooks

WHO IS THIS CHRISTOPHER HEALY?!?

Christopher Healy

Christopher Healy is the author of The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom, which the New York Times selected as one of its best books of the year, calling it “charming—a quest that recalls at moments the Musketeers and at others the Marxes”; as well as its sequel, The Hero’s Guide to Storming the Castle, which Publishers Weekly hailed as “uproariously funny” in a starred review. He is also a reviewer of children’s media. Chris lives with his wife and two children in New Jersey. You can find him online at www.christopherhealy.com

Follow Mr. Healy on Twitter HERE.  Like Mr. Healy on Facebook HERE.

 
  To learn more please visit

Walden Pond Press at

 Blog: http://waldenpondpress.blogspot.com/

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

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/WaldenPondPress

CHECK OUT ALL THE STOPS ON THIS BLOG TOUR!

Hero’s Guide to Being a Blog Tour 

5/1 - The Book Rat

5/5 – Icey Books

5/6 - Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers

5/7 – The Book Monsters

5/8 - The Book Rat

5/9 - A Foodie Bibliophile in Wanderlust

5/12 - Word Spelunking Book Blog

5/15 - Buried in Books

5/16 - KidLit Frenzy

5/19 - Mundie Kids

5/20 - The Flashlight Reader

5/21 - Bunbury In the Stacks

5/22 - The Hiding Spot

5/23 - Novel Novice

5/24 – Paigeintraining

5/26 - Mundie Kids

5/26 - This Kid Reviews Books

5/27 - This Kid Reviews Books

5/28 - Small Review

5/29 - Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers

5/30 - The Haunting of Orchid Forsythia

Easter pick – God’s Amazing World by Eileen Spinelli

13 Apr

Here’s a great book for Easter by one of my favorite authors!

 

godsamazin

God’s Amazing World
by Eileen Spinelli
Illustrated by Mélanie Florian
32 pages – ages 4+
Published by Ideals Children’s Books, an imprint of Ideals Publications on March 1, 2014

Cousins Gracie and Bo are amazed by the world around them. Gracie tells Bo about the 7 Days of Creation. Together the children discover how great and beautiful the world is.

This is an extremely cute book! The illustrations are just beautiful and a perfect fit for the story. I love the two little cats in the background of  pretty much all the pictures. They are funny. Gracie and Bo are great characters. I like the happy feeling the story has. I like how Gracie explains the 7 Days of Creation to her younger cousin by just playing outside. It is very simple and fun but not “preachy”. Mrs. Spinelli has done it yet again! :D

I give this book 5 out of 5 bookworms!fivebooks

To learn more about Mrs. Spinelli and her other books, please visit her website HERE.

To learn more about Ms. Florian and her illustrations, please visit her website HERE.

Almost Super by Marion Jensen

26 Mar

I’m feeling a little purple today!

I’ve turned my blog purple too. Why? Today it epilepsy awareness day!

elilepsyPurple Day was founded by 8-year-old Cassidy Megan (she’s now 15). Epilepsy is a serious disease that affects about 50 millions people. Please show your support and help make people more aware of this disease. Please visit purpleday.org or the Purple Day  Facebook page HERE. Follow Purple Day on Twitter @PurpleDay

Now on to my review!

almostsuperAlmost Super

by Marion Jensen

256 pages – ages 8+

Published by HarperCollins on January 21, 2014

Every February 29th, members of the Bailey family (if you are legally part of the family (adopted, marriage, etc.), it counts too!) 12-years-old and older go through an amazing transformation. This year, at exactly 4:23PM (as always) on February 29th 13-year-old Rafter Bailey and his little brother, 12-year-old Benny Bailey will get their SUPER POWERS! You see the Baileys are a family of superheros. Rafter and Benny are excited to see what super powers they get. Will they fly like their dad? Be super-strong like grandpa? Have fire powers?!? When the time finally comes they receive AWESOME super powers! Well… not awesome… more like… umm, well, the powers are lame and pretty much useless.  Rafter can light matches on polyester and Benny can turn his innie belly button to an outie. How are Rafter and Benny supposed to help their family save the world from the evil family of supervillains,  the Johnsons, with these pathetic powers?!? When things look the worst, the boys find an unlikely ally and realize that together they really are heroes.

Books like this make me think I should change my rating system from number of bookworms to rating it as the number of times I get in trouble for reading the book when I’m supposed to be doing something else. I got yelled at, well, at least 6 times because I couldn’t put this book down. :) I actually ended up hiding under the covers in my bed (when I was supposed to be asleep) using my alarm clock for light (my parents confiscated all my flashlights a while ago because of me reading way past my bedtime) to finish reading the book. It was that awesome.

Mr. Jensen has written a fun superhero story that has a different twist. The book is packed with lots of humor and written in a style that all ages can enjoy, especially fans of comics and superheroes. It is a great choice for young advanced readers who are looking for something more than a chapter book. Rafter is a great guy. You really understand how he feels. He’s surrounded by totally super family – his great-aunt (whose power is way less than it was when she was younger) has a stronger power than he does! Benny is a character you just hope succeeds. He’s the really nice guy and he keeps trying and trying. I ended up cheering for Benny. :) The story also has a good message – Don’t draw conclusions based on rumors/gossip or what other people are telling you. People aren’t always what other people tell you they are. I really hope there is a book two, even though the story ended well. But, it’s sort of a cliff-hanger. Sort of.

 

Five out of five bookworms for this most certainly super book! fivebooks

Noah Zarc and Mammoth Trouble by D. Robert Pease

13 Feb

Happy snow day! I think I’ll review a book! 

NoahZarcMT_Cover600x900Noah Zarc and Mammoth Trouble

By D. Robert Pease

210 pages – ages 8+

Published by Evolved Publishing LLC on December 17, 2013

Noah Zarc and his family are on a mission. They are collecting 2 of every animal via time machine so that they aren’t extinct in the year 3024 (Noah’s home time-zone). When Noah’s mom and dad get stuck in time because someone stole their time-traveling spaceship, Noah and his older siblings go to rescue them. But, it turns out that by the time they got there (they arrived a week after the signal) that their mom was kidnapped (by the guy who stole their spaceship). And that’s not all – the evil guy plans to destroy their goal by wrecking the place they have set up for the animals via poisonous gas, so it would take years to remove it. What can Noah and his family do?

Mammoth Trouble is the first book in the Noah Zarc trilogy (Book 2 is Cataclysm and Book 3 is Declaration). This is a fabulous dystopian world! Mr. Pease makes it sound so real and believable. I wouldn’t be surprised if this actually happened in the future (hmm.. maybe Mr. Pease is the time traveler?). I like Noah’s name, it made me smile. Noah is a really cool boy. The fact that he is disabled (Noah is in a high-tech wheelchair) added to the story. It is great to see a very cool MC with a disability. The story is very fun and totally gets the reader involved. I think it would make a great read-aloud for parents to read to younger kids for story time. Older kids and grown-ups will enjoy Mr. Pease’s writing style. The book has no profanity and only mild violence. The sibling rivalry described between Noah and his brother and sister is very believable and pretty funny. I think Noah Zarc is a great series that kids would love. I am definitely finishing this series!

I give Noah Zarc five out of five bookworms!

fivebooks

To learn more about Mr. Pease and his other books, please visit his website HERE!

Check out the series trailer!


 

Wanderville by Wendy McClure

10 Feb

I am starting the week off right – a 2-hour school delay AND a great book to tell you about!

wandervilleWanderville (Book 1 of the Wanderville Series)

By Wendy McClure

224 pages – ages 8+

Published by Razorbill on January 23, 2014

Jack wasn’t an orphan, but his parents put him on an orphan train after his older brother died in a factory fire. His parents couldn’t afford to have Jack live with them anymore. Jack makes friends on the train. His new friends, Frances and her little brother Harold, are just happy to not be separated from each other. The kids hear horrible rumors about the place they’re heading for, the Pratcherd Ranch. So, they hatch an idea. When the train stops, the kids jump off it! Soon after, they meet Alexander, a kid who had escaped from the Pratcherd Ranch. They become friends and they make a town where kids in need can find refuge. The children call it Wanderville.

This was an outstanding, well-written book. Ms. McClure has instantly become a favorite author of mine with this book! The story was one I couldn’t put down. I really identified with the characters who were taken from New York and left in Kansas (we recently moved from just outside Philadelphia to a VERY rural area). Ms. McClure’s writing style really draws you into the story. It made it seem like I jumped off the train with Jack, Frances, and Harold. There is some very minor violence at the Pratcherd Ranch, but most of it happens between chapters and isn’t graphic. I love the history I learned about the orphan trains too. I first learned about them in Clare Vanderpool’s “Moon Over Manifest,” but learned more about them from this book. Jack sounds like a boy I’d love to be friends with. He’s pretty adventurous. I think kids will love this book! I can’t wait for Book 2! :D

I give this book 5 out of 5 bookworms!fivebooks

Ms. McClure’s website is packed with activities, history, cool things about her research for this book and much more. To visit her website, please click HERE.

Like Ms. McClure’s Facebook page HERE.

Follow her on Twitter HERE.

Visit the publisher’s website HERE.

Bad Kitty – Drawn to Trouble by Nick Bruel

3 Feb

WOO!!! 2-hour school delay AGAIN!!!  SNOW DAY!!!

Let’s celebrate with something bad… Bad Kitty, that is! :D

drawntotraoubleBad Kitty – Drawn to Trouble

By Nick Bruel

128 pages – ages 7+

Published by Roaring Brook Press on January 7. 2014

Bad Kitty is back! But, this time, she’s not alone! Her creator, Nick Bruel, is right in the plot! With the (unwilling) help of Kitty, Mr. Bruel tells us readers how to write a good story . The reader learns about protagonists, setting, plot, conflict, foreshadowing and much more in a fun-filled way. The is that Kitty needs to go on a diet of turnips, because she’s gained a LOT of weight recently (thanks to Mr. Bruel and his trusty paint brush). But, the thing is, Kitty doesn’t even LIKE turnips. And, Puppy is eating all of her food. Plus, the giant octopuses outside the house (generously provided by Mr. Bruel) keep Kitty from running away.

This is a hilarious addition to the Bad Kitty series. In fact, I think this is my new favorite (sorry Bad Kitty vs. Uncle Murray) because of all the information it gives about writing a book. Mr. Bruel’s humor is awesome. I love that the antagonist in the story is a turnip. :) Mr. Bruel wrote a great book that teaches kids all about writing and made it a totally enjoyable story. The idea of the author/illustrator and character interacting is very cool (even though Bad Kitty is NOT impressed by it). I like how Mr. Bruel adds comments from his editor, “Neal”, on little sticky notes “stuck” to the pages reminding him of things he shouldn’t be doing in the story. There is also a handy glossary in the back of the book with the definitions of the parts of the story Mr. Bruel  goes over (and a recipe for roasted turnips hee hee :lol: ). I think kids of all ages will enjoy this book for the hilarious story and learn something along the way!

I give this book 5 out of 5 bookworms!fivebooks

To learn more about Mr. Bruel and his other books, visit his website, HERE.

Like Bad Kitty Books on Facebook HERE.

Check out a preview at Macmillan Publishers HERE.

Review & Giveaway! I Even Funnier by James Patterson and Chris Grabenstein

4 Dec

HAPPY WEDNESDAY!

Have I got a great giveaway to tell you about today! :D

One lucky person will win a copy of “I Funny” PLUS a copy of  “I Even Funnier”! That’s right – both books in this awesome series by award-winning authors James Patterson and Chris Grabenstein! Read to the end to find out how to enter!

ifunnyIEvenFunnierHC

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IEvenFunnierHCI Even Funnier

by James Patterson

and Chris Grabenstein

Hardcover: 368 pages -ages 8+

Published by Little, Brown and Company on December 9, 2013

After being declared “Funniest Kid in New York State” in I Funny (Book 1), Jamie Grimm is ready to go to the national semi-final comedy competition! Jamie, along  with Gilda Gold, Joey Gaynor & Jimmy Pierce, is ready to make you laugh until you bust a gut!  Jamie is totally psyched about the competition, but everything seems to be going wrong. Joey’s mom is dealing with having cancer and after getting into MAJOR trouble at school, Joey ends up having to move in with Jamie’s super-nice uncle  Frankie. Jamie is still living with his terrible Aunt and Uncle and his horribly mean cousin (we learn in Book 1 that Jamie was hurt (and is now in a wheelchair) and his parents killed in a car crash before the series starts and he lives with his mom’s sister and her family). When Joey moves in with Uncle Frankie, Jamie also goes to live with him, which is good because Jamie’s cousin is being worse than ever. Things are going pretty well until Uncle Frankie has a heart attack! With all this going on, will Jamie become “The Planet’s Funniest Kid” or will all of his dreams go down the drain?

This book was one of those where I remember the characters really well. I really enjoyed the story. The best part of the book – that no matter what happens, the characters don’t give up. All the hardships the characters in the book go through make me care for them even more. The characters are believable middle school kids. Some of the story plot seems a bit sad, but it’s really the kind of things kids have to go through every day. The humor in the book is hysterical and I had a few laugh out loud moments when I was reading it. I love Jamie’s motto – “Laughter is the best medicine” :) Mr. Patterson and Mr. Grabenstein’s writing style is enjoyable to read. The book is very appropriate for middle school age kids even though it deals with some sad topic. I think this book can inspire everyone to persevere and follow your dreams. I can’t wait for the next book (I Funniest) to come out.  :)

I give I Even Funnier 5 out of 5 bookworms!fivebooks

To learn more, please visit Mr. Patterson’s Middle School Books official website HERE!

Visit Mr. Grabenstein’s website HERE!

Follow Mr. Patterson on Twitter HERE and Mr. Grabenstein HERE!

Like Mr. Patterson on Facebook HERE and Mr. Grabenstein HERE!

Now for the Giveaway!

To enter the giveaway, all you have to do is comment saying you want to enter. But you can ALSO give me your best joke, OR your best evil laugh (because I like evil laughs)! MWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! :twisted:

The contest runs until Tuesday December 10th. I will put all the names of people who enter in a hat (I haven’t decided what kind of hat, but I guess it should be funny). My sister Josie will pick a name out of the hat and I will announce the winner on December 11th! Good Luck!

The 39 Clues: Unstoppable Book 1: Nowhere to Run by Jude Watson

23 Sep

unstopThe 39 Clues: Unstoppable Book 1: Nowhere to Run

By Jude Watson

272 pages – Ages 8 – 12 years

Series: The 39 Clues: Unstoppable (Book 1)

Published by Scholastic Inc. October 1, 2013

Dan and Amy Cahill, the two kids in charge of the world’s most powerful family and keepers of The 39 Clues serum are back in an all new adventure! The 39 Clues are a list of ingredients that when you mix them together, they make a serum that makes the person who takes it 90% invincible (it happens to be very toxic, so you die soon after taking it)! The 39 Clues is too powerful to ever to be used, but there are those who will stop at nothing to get it. After defeating the Vespers (an evil family who want t o rule the world or destroy it) in the Cahill vs Vespers series, all Dan and Amy want is to return to a normal life or at least a life where they don’t have to look over their shoulders 99% of the time and wonder who is out to get them. Sadly, that is not going to be. J. Rutherford Pierce (a super-rich and super-powerful media guy) is out to get the Cahill kids. He is trying to ruin their reputations and even worse. The Cahills decide it is time to stop Pierce, but they soon realize their worst fears have come true. Someone has assembled the serum, which a Cahill had just perfected (now 99.9% safe, and taken in daily doses!

The 39 Clues is one of my favorite multi-series (I say multi because there are a bunch of series: The 39 Clues, Rapidfire: The Cahill vs Vespers etc)! I am the kid at the front of the line at the bookstore every time a new book comes out. I was very thrilled that I was able to get an ARC of this book because of two words – Jude Watson! Ms. Watson is a favorite author of mine, and one of the original 39 Clues authors, and I think she writes really well. I was a little disappointed in the last book of the last 39 Clues series (The 39 Clues: Cahills vs. Vespers Book 6: Day of Doom – each book in the 39 Clues series is written by different authors). In Day of Doom, there were some character things and things that happen in the plot I wasn’t really fond of. I was hopeful that this series would start off well. I was not disappointed! Ms. Watson not only tied up things from the last series, she sets this series up to be another great Cahill adventure. Ms. Watson puts in a bunch of action, humor, and adventure into her books and tells a great story for kids. I thought the plot of this book was especially intense and exciting because of the new bad-guy, Pierce. Pierce is very cunning, smart, and absolutely diabolical.

This is one of those books I want to give more than 5 bookworms to, but my scale only goes to 5 :) – 5 out of 5 bookworms! fivebooks

You can find out more about The 39 Clues and play the online game (which I think is very cool) by visiting the official 39 Clues website – click HERE!

The next book in The 39 Clues: Unstoppable series is called Breakaway by Jeff Hirsch and will be published by Scholastic Inc. on January 28, 2014! I can’t wait!

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