Tag Archives: book review

#BalletCat by Bob Shea Review and GIVEAWAY!

10 Feb

I just joined forces with Disney-Hyperion to offer this amazing giveaway! One lucky winner (US entries only please) will get both of the Ballet Cat books plus a super cute Ballet Cat plush toy!

BalletCatPlushPrize

WHAT DO I HAVE TO DO FOR THIS?!?! you ask – well I am going to tell you! All you have to do is read to the end and comment that you’d like to be in my random drawing for the prize!

ABOUT THE BOOKS (from the publisher)

BalletCatseries

 The Totally Secret Secret

Ballet Cat and Sparkles the Pony are trying to decide what to play today. Nothing that Sparkles suggests–making crafts, playing checkers, and selling lemonade–goes well with the leaping, spinning, and twirling that Ballet Cat likes to do. When Sparkles’s leaps, spins, and twirls seem halfhearted, Ballet Cat asks him what’s wrong. Sparkles doesn’t want to say. He has a secret that Ballet Cat won’t want to hear. What Sparkles doesn’t know is that Ballet Cat has a secret of her own, a totally secret secret. Once their secrets are shared, will their friendship end, or be stronger than ever?

Dance! Dance! Underpants!

Ballet Cat is getting her friend Butter Bear ready for her big ballet debut. “Leap, Butter Bear, leap!” Ballet Cat prompts. But Butter Bear would prefer to just point her toe. When Ballet Cat keeps pushing, Butter Bear gets hungry, then thirsty, then sleepy . . . The bottom line is that Butter Bear would rather do almost anything to avoid making a big leap. Why? Because her bottom is covered in silly underpants! This second entry in the Ballet Cat series will have beginning readers rolling on the floor with laughter.

 

WHO IS THIS BOB SHEA?

BobShea

Bob Shea is the author of the first book about Ballet Cat: THE TOTALLY SECRET SECRET, the Dinosaur vs. series, and several other picture books, including DON’T PLAY WITH YOUR FOOD and UNICORN THINKS HE’S PRETTY GREAT. He and his wife have their own design studio in Madison, Connecticut.

 

WAIT, ERIK, I NEED TO KNOW MORE!!!

LEARN MORE at:
 the Series Official Site

Visit the author at BobShea.com

Follow Disney Books on Twitter and Instagram

#BalletCat

Now on to my reviews of these books!

BalletCat1The Totally Secret Secret

Series: Ballet Cat #1

By Bob Shea

56 pages – ages 5+

Published by Disney-Hyperion on May 5th, 2015

Synopsis- Ballet Cat and Sparkles the Pony want to play together. Sparkles wants to do things like crafts, checkers, and selling lemonade, but Ballet Cat says that it won’t do well with twirling, leaping, and kicking. Of course, ballet fits perfectly into those criteria. But, what if – what if Sparkles has a secret? A totally secret secret? What if it *gasp* ruins their friendship?

What I Thought- I liked this book. The kooky humor and illustrations go so well together.  I know that Josie, my little sister, devoured these almost as soon as she opened the cover. Mr. Shea has written a fun story about how even though friends can have different interests, they can still be friends. I like that it shows Sparkles’ complete lack of enthusiasm for having to do ballet moves. Kids will laugh out loud at these characters. I know I did.

 

BalletCat2Dance! Dance! Underpants!

Series: Ballet Cat #2

By Bob Shea

56 pages – ages 5+

Published by Disney-Hyperion on February 2nd, 2016

Synopsis- Ballet Cat and Butter Bear are doing ballet, and Ballet Cat wants to do the high leaps. Butter Bear suddenly has to do several other things, everything besides leaping. When Butter Bear doesn’t come back until after dark, Ballet Cat knows for sure that Butter Bear is avoiding the high leaps. What could be so scary about high leaps? Nothing, except for that Butter Bear has embarrassing underpants on!

What I Thought- This was a hilarious book! I have to say I am thinking I will like any book called Dance! Dance! Underpants! – the title alone cracks me up. Mr. Shea has written a marvelous story, and it teaches a basic “face your fears” type message. The reader knows instantly what Butter Bear is doing (asking to have a snack, has to go to the bathroom… outside, making popsicles, etc.), while it takes Ballet Cat a little bit to catch on. Little kids reading along will find it hysterical. The illustrations are cartoony and kid-friendly, and easy to read. Mr. Shea is onto something with this series!!

I give both these books five out of five bookworms!fivebooks

Double Review! Balto of the Blue Dawn & Dogsledding and Extreme Sports by Mary Pope Osborne

9 Feb

Have I got a treat for you! I’m reviewing Mary Pope Osborne’s latest Magic Tree House book, Balto of the Blue Dawn, and its nonfiction companion!

mt1Balto of the Blue Dawn
Series: Magic Tree House #54
Written by Mary Pope Osborne
Illustrated by Sal Murdocca

128 pages – ages 7+
Published by Random House Books for Young Readers  on January 5, 2016

Synopsis- (from Goodreads) The magic tree house has returned and it’s taking Jack and Annie back in time to Alaska, 1925. There they meet Balto, a jet-black Siberian husky destined to save victims of the diphtheria epidemic. But the trail isn’t easy, and Balto is going to need Jack and Annie’s help!

What I Thought- This was a fun book. It chronicles the inspirational story that spurred the Iditarod Dogsled race in Alaska. The story is nice and kids will love it. The pages are certainly packed with excitement for younger readers. Jack and Annie are sent back to 1925 to the Alaska Territory to help Gunnar Kaasen and his lead dog Balto bring Diphtheria medication to the people of the territory. The chapters go quick and along with being enjoyable, are an easy read. I love this younger version of historical fiction. Kids get to learn about historical events while being entertained. I can see kids wanting to learn more about the Iditarod and seeking out additional information. FORTUNATELY – this is Magic Tree House and they always think of these things (see my next review below ;) ).  Sal Murdocca’s illustrations are a great fit for the story too.

I give this four out of five bookworms.fourbooks

mt2Dogsledding and Extreme Sports: A nonfiction companion to Magic Tree House #54: Balto of the Blue Dawn
Series: Magic Tree House Fact Tracker #34
Written by Mary Pope Osborne and Natalie Pope Boyce
Illustrated by Carlo Molinari
128 pages – ages 7+
Published by Random House Books for Young Readers on January 5, 2016

Synopsis-(from Goodreads)  When Jack and Annie came back from their adventure in Magic Tree House #54, they had lots of questions. How do sled dogs race for so long? When was the first Iditarod? What are some other extreme sports? Find out the answers to these questions and more as Jack and Annie track the facts about the Iditarod, open water swimming, the Ironman triathlon, free climbing, the X Games, and other ways people test their limits.

Filled with up-to-date information, photographs, illustrations, and fun tidbits from Jack and Annie, the Magic Tree House Fact Trackers are the perfect way for kids to find out more about the topics they discover in their favorite Magic Tree House adventures. And teachers can use the Fact Trackers alongside their Magic Tree House fiction companions to meet Common Core text pairing needs.

What I Thought- Hey! This is just what I asked for! I liked this nonfiction book a lot. It includes basic information about the complex sport of dogsledding, and the conditions and conditioning they go through. I like that it isn’t all about dogsledding though – the book includes other extreme sports, such as the X Games (dirt bikes, motocross, etc.), open water swimming (like swimming through the ocean over a long distance) and much more! The book also chronicles champions in such extreme sports, with portraits. The book includes explanatory illustrations throughout the sports.  This is a great companion to Balto of the Blue Dawn. I love that the Magic Tree House books connect fun stories with historical events but then follow up with additional information. This was always one of my favorite series growing up.

fivebooks

I give this five out of five bookworms!

BUT WAIT THERE’S MORE!!!

mt3

The Magic Tree House Kids’ Adventure Club just launched last month! Here is the description of the new club from the Magic Tree House website -“The Magic Tree House Kids’ Adventure Club is the first-ever club where kid adventurers can come together. By joining the Kids’ Adventure Club, members will receive packages in the mail throughout the year, members-only goodies, and the opportunity to Skype with the person who knows Jack and Annie’s adventures best—Mary Pope Osborne!”

I like that the club has kids getting things in the mail and not all of it is online. It sounds very cool!

Review! The Almost Terrible Playdate by Richard Torrey

8 Feb

almostterribleThe Almost Terrible Playdate

By Richard Torrey

40 pages – ages 3+

Will be Published by Doubleday Books for Young Readers on February 16, 2016

 

Synopsis- Two kids are having a playdate. But what happens when what each thinks they should be playing is VERY different from the other. Can these not-so-similar kids have a nice playdate or will it end on a terrible note?

What I Thought- I loved the story. The dialogue between the two characters are funny, and extremely realistic – Mr. Torrey really captures the sense of two very different kids playing together. The illustrations are unique as most of the page is taken up by a thought bubble, and the image inside the bubble looks as if it were drawn by a little kid – reflecting the imagination of a child. I also like the book because it is all conversation – there is no narration. The kids tell the story just by talking to each other. The story isn’t about differences but rather compromise and seeing anothers’ point of view. In the end there is a nice resolution to their differences and the playdate turns out to be not so terrible. :)This is a nice book for pre-schools or kids learning how to play with each other.

I give this five out of five bookworms!fivebooks

Perfect Picture Book Friday! Frankencrayon By Michael Hall

5 Feb

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 a fun story that kids will absolutely adore!


frankenFrankencrayon 

By Michael Hall
40 pages – ages 4+

Published by Greenwillow on January 26th 2016

Theme- All art is fine / You can’t unscribble by scribbling over something.

Genre- Fiction

Opening and Synopsis- Opening Lines: (in order, said by Orange, Green, and then Purple twice)

I can’t believe it’s been canceled.

It was my first starring role.

It was my first supporting role.

[page turn]

Help! Someone just turned the page.

Synopsis from Amazon: “The crayons are ready to tell the thrilling tale of Frankencrayon. The costumes are made, the roles are cast, the pages are all set—but then disaster strikes. Someone has scribbled on the page! Hideous! Horrifying! The story can’t go on! Try as they might, the crayons can’t erase the scribble, and this picture book must be canceled. Until the crayons playing the title role of Frankencrayon think of a solution, that is.”

What I Thought- This is a unique book – it puts a picture book sort of like a movie, with a cast, narrator, and whatnot. Mr. Hall’s illustrations are simple but show a lot, and the things that the crayons say can be pretty funny. I like how the crayons thought that by scribbling over the offending red scribble, it would get better. I think that little kids will love this book (and will also relate to the horror of opening a coloring book that has been scribbled in)! I loved Mr. Hall’s other crayon book, Red, and this one doesn’t disappoint either!

Activities and Resources- Get your crayons and have them take place in a “movie”. Maybe have a production problem, like the lights won’t turn on, or a cast problem, like maybe one of the cast forgot the most important line. What will the crayons do?

Over at PBS’ website ZOOM – there is a ton of short plays kids can put on themselves. Check it out HERE!

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

 

Review! The Buccaneer’s Code by Caroline Carlson

4 Feb

the-buccaneers-codeThe Buccaneer’s Code

Series: The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates #3

By Caroline Carlson

320 pages – ages 8+

Published by HarperCollins on September 8, 2015

Synopsis- Hilary Westfield, the Terror of the Southlands, and her ragamuffin crew of pirates are back in an all new adventure! And it all started when three pirates came out to Westfield manor (Hilary’s parents’ house, where she was staying for a little vacation) in regards to an ad that she didn’t put out. The ad, apparently, said that Hilary was going up against the pirate Blacktooth’s presidency of the Very Nearly Honourable League of Pirates. After all, Captain Blacktooth was part of the kingdom-threatening Mutineers – without proof of course. But how can Hilary get the necessary 200 pirates needed to compete against Blacktooth? Especially when there are punishments for pirates that even look at Hilary or her crew!

What I Thought- Ms. Carlson does a fabulous job of weaving humor into a serious adventure. The characters are wacky, and they keep you laughing as they go about their days. The adventure in the story is something young readers will appreciate and get lost in. Between the chapters, there are little mail correspondences and newspaper articles, etc., between characters – it’s a cool addition. The dialogue is spot on for the characters and the care Carlson takes with it adds dimension to the characters. I should mention the series features a female pirate as the lead character and she is awesome. The story keeps you hooked from the very beginning. I can’t say enough about Carlon’s writing. She keeps a reader enthralled with the story. Even reluctant readers will devour her books. I love this series and I am sad to see it come to an end with this, the third book in the trilogy.  Will pirate Hillary Westfield sail again? I can only hope.

I give this book five out of five bookworms.fivebooks

Perfect Picture Book Friday! Punk Skunks by Trisha Speed Shaskan

30 Jan

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 a funny story with a great message.

punkPunk Skunks
Written by Trisha Speed Shaskan
Illustrated by Stephen Shaskan
40 pages – ages 5+
Will be published by HarperCollins on February 9th, 2016

Theme- Friendship/Argument/Disagreement

Genre- Fiction

Opening and Synopsis- Opening Lines: “Kit and Buzz were BSFs- best skunks forever. Each day, Kit banged on Buzz’s door.

Synopsis from GoodReads: “Join two rockin’ punk skunks in a fun story about friendship.

Kit and Buzz are BSFs—Best Skunks Forever. Every day they rock out together. But when Kit wants to sing a song about skating and Buzz wants to sing a song about painting, the BSFs get into a HUGE fight!

They try to hum, drum, and strum on their own, but it’s all wrong. Will Kit and Buzz find a way to make up?

What I Thought- I liked this book. Kit and Buzz are great characters. I laughed at the “parodies” of bands and whatnot in the illustrations – Kit wears an “ABCD” shirt, which I’m 95% sure is an AC/DC reference; Buzz has a “Ratmoans” poster. That was funny, and I bet adults would get the jokes. The book is a great story about how friends can disagree/fight with each other, but can make up and still be friends. Mr. Shaskan’s illustrations use bold colors and dark lines, looking like a cartoon or comic character. Kids will love them. Ms. Shaskan has written a fun book that kids will connect with. 

Activities and Resources- You could write a poem/song, and then play an “instrument” to it (anything works – pots and pans, milk jug, etc). Even better – make it about friendship or your best friend! Over on the How Wee Learn blog, there is a great article on how to make a bunch of different homemade instruments. Click HERE.
Check out a couple of the Punk Skunks songs!


Check out more about the book at the HarperCollins website! Click HERE!

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

Multicultural Children’s Book Day! #ReadYourWorld

27 Jan

Today is Multicultural Children’s Book Day!!!

MCCBD

And I am a Multicultural Children’s Book Day reviewer! Before I get to my review, I wanted to let you know a bit more about this event.

For those that don’t know what that is, Multi Cultural Children’s Book Day was created by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from Pragmatic Mom in 2014. As the official website states:

Despite census data that shows 37% of the US population consists of people of color, only 10% of children’s books published have diversity content. Using the Multicultural Children’s Book Day, Mia and Valarie are on a mission to change all of that. Their mission is to not only raise awareness for the kid’s books that celebrate diversity, but to get more of these types of books into classrooms and libraries. Another goal of this exciting event is create a compilation of books and favorite reads that will provide not only a new reading list for the winter, but also a way to expose brilliant books to families, teachers, and libraries.

The MCCBD team’s mission to spread the word and raise awareness about the importance of diversity in children’s literature. Our young readers need to see themselves within the pages of a book and experience other cultures, languages, traditions and religions within the pages of a book. We encourage readers, parents, teachers, caregivers and librarians to follow along the fun book reviews, author visits, event details, a multicultural children’s book linky and via our hashtag (#ReadYourWorld) on Twitter and other social media.

I’d like to thank all of the sponsors of this years events –

Multicultural Children’s Book day 2016 Medallion Level Sponsors! #ReadYourWorld

Platinum: Wisdom Tales Press * StoryQuest Books*Lil Libros

Gold: Author Tori Nighthawk*Candlewick Press,* Bharat Babies

Silver: Lee and Low Books*Chronicle Books*Capstone Young Readers T

Tuttle Publishing ,NY Media Works, LLC/KidLit TV

Bronze: Pomelo Books* Author Jacqueline Woodson*Papa Lemon Books* Goosebottom Books*Author Gleeson Rebello*ShoutMouse Press*Author Mahvash Shahegh* China Institute.org*Live Oak Media

Multicultural Children’s Book Day has 12 amazing Co-Host and you can use the links below or view them here.

All Done Monkey, Crafty Moms Share,Educators Spin on it,Growing Book by Book,Imagination Soup,I’m Not the Nanny,InCultural Parent, Kid World Citizen,Mama Smiles,Multicultural Kid Blogs,Spanish Playground

Now on to my review!

MCCBDbookGarrett and the Feathered Serpent Quetzalcoatl

Series: Tales from Davy Jones Locker #1

Written by Carl Gundestrup

190 pages – ages 8+

Audio Book Run Time: 2 hours

Published by Davy Jones Publishing on June 4th, 2015

Summary from Goodreads-Garrett Spencer is a boy on crutches, with one good leg, no friends, never been to a real school and lives with his family in a cave… because no one on the island will rent them a room.
The family lives on Shiloh Island, known for pirates, treasure caves and legendary sea monsters. Shortly after they arrive, Garrett rescues the legendary feathered sea creature Quetzalcoatl from the ravages of a hurricane and certain death. For the first time in his life, Garrett has a best friend.

But in order to remain together they will have to battle the bullies of the island – survive multiple attacks by Sea Dragons – attempt to find the hidden treasure beneath the island – save Garrett’s father’s business and unite the people of the island.

What I Thought- This was an interesting review for me. The book is a very cool concept. Mr. Gundestrup produced an audio version of the book (more on that in a bit) as a gateway to get reluctant readers wanting to read the whole story. I was a bit hesitant at first because I much prefer written stories to the audio-version, but the audio book was very thrilling and added depth to the story. I was happy to listen to this amazing audio book with 22 different voice actors, sound effects, and a whole orchestra! That being said, the story itself was very gripping. It is a marvelous story about true friendship. The characters are realistic and well-developed. Garrett is physically challenged yes, but he is stronger than most people his age. He is still bullied, but many of his peers admire him. Quetzalcoatl is an awe-inspiring creature of magnificent splendor that has a marvelous “history”. It can heal anything and anyone, and will not hurt you.  The plot is very driving, action-packed, and does a good job of keeping you hooked. Gundestrup writing is spot on for a middle-grade audience. The book is very cool, and does a great job of making it so that you believe that Quetzalcoatl could be real. I was definitely impressed with the audio-book. Having said that, when I sat down to read the ebook version, I was not disappointed. The written story added some subplots and I have to say I do enjoy reading the words in a book and I personally feel more attached to the characters as I read, but I can see how the audio/written book will have real appeal to kids who aren’t as fond of reading as I am. This one is definitely worth a try!

fivebooks

I give “Quetzalcoatl” five out of five bookworms!

To learn more, please visit the Tales of Davy Jones official website by clicking HERE.

Check out the trailer!

BUT WAIT THERE’S MORE!!!

 Classroom Reading Challenge . This very special offering from MCCBD offers teachers and classrooms the chance to (very easily) earn a free hardcover multicultural children’s book for their classroom library. These books are not only donated by the Junior Library Guild, but they are pre-screened and approved by them as well.

What we could really use some help with is spreading the word to your teacher/librarian/classroom connections so we can get them involved in this program. There is no cost to teachers and classrooms and we’ve made the whole process as simple as possible. You can help by tweeting the below info:

​ Teachers! Earn a FREE #Multicultural Kids Book for Your Classroom! #teachers, #books #teacherlife 
http://ow.ly/UUy96

The Classroom Reading Challenge has begun! Teachers can earn a free diversity book! #teachers, #books
 http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/?p=1796

Review! Fires of Invention by J. Scott Savage

26 Jan

mysteryinventFires of Invention

Series: Mysteries of Cove #1

By J. Scott Savage

288 pages – ages 9+

Published by Shadow Mountain Publishing on September 29, 2015

Synopsis- In the underground city of Cove, the worst insult you can call someone is an inventor. It’s the worst of the cuss words. Trenton Coleman was shocked and mostly insulted when, after hooking up two approved devices (power generator+swing=motorized swing), and the power goes out in the city, he is blamed for it and *gasp* called an inventor. The math didn’t add up for how the swing shut off the power, and sure enough – there had been a clog in one of the mine’s power grinders. Only Trenton could fit in there, so he goes in, and finds… a strange device… that isn’t made from an approved metal! And then Trenton starts to find out that Cove isn’t all that it says it is…

What I Thought- This is probably the best steampunk-ish/dystopian book I’ve read in a while and it’s an MG book so it will appeal to a wide range of ages. Trenton is a great main character who you really connect with – he doesn’t mean to cause trouble (at least, not at first), he is just naturally adept at mechanics and I really enjoyed his character. Kallista, his friend, and the daughter of a deceased inventor, is an interesting person who you want to get to know more about. Mr. Savage has written an entertaining and engaging book (so much so I got into trouble several times for reading the book when I should have been doing something else!). I found it really cool that at the beginning of each chapter in the heading, they show a “penciled” dragon blueprint, and with each chapter, more is completed. I enjoyed how Mr. Savage has created a dystopian world and put the city underground. The reasoning behind it rings true and makes sense, making the plot all the more entertaining.

I give this book five out of five bookworms!fivebooks

Review! Vision of the Griffin’s Heart by LRW Lee

25 Jan

smithtour

Today I am part of a blog tour for Linda Lee’s fifth book in her Andy Smithson series! I have enjoyed this series very much.

lee

Author Linda Lee

Here is the series summary from Ms. Lee:

Four years ago, Andy Smithson discovered he is the Chosen one to break a 500-yr-old curse plaguing the land of Oomaldee when he unexpectedly and mysteriously found himself there. To do so, he must collect ingredients for a magical potion. Thus far he has gathered the scale of a red dragon, venom from a giant serpent, a unicorn’s horn, and the tail feather of a phoenix. Now he must ask a griffin for one of its talons. There’s just one problem…humans have poached griffin treasure, causing these mythical creatures to attack on sight.

Complicating matters, the evil Abaddon, sovereign of Oomaldee’s northern neighbor, is turning more and more citizens into zolt in his ongoing campaign of terror as he sets in motion the final steps of his plan to conquer the land. Things really start to heat up in book five!

If you loved Harry Potter, you’ll love the Andy Smithson series chalk full of mythical creatures, newly invented animals like zolt, herewolves, and therewolves, a complex plot with evolving characters, and positive themes including responsibility, diligence, dignity, friendship and more.

Now on to my review!

 

visionsVision of the Grifin’s Heart

Series: Andy Smithson #5

By LRW Lee

218 pages – ages 9+

Published by Woodgate Publishing on January 13, 2016

Synopsis- Andy Smithson is back – back in Oomaldee, the land where he is the sole heir, and the land he is trying to save from a terrible curse. He is almost done finding the ingredients. The evil king Abaddon who is invading the land has found a way to take over the minds of the people who he has turned into the bodies of his minions (bird-like people) so that they do his bidding. With rumors of an attack on Oomaldee’s capital, and an ingredient to find in a nearby country, Andy sure has his hands full!

What I Thought- This is a marvelous book in a great series. Andy Smithson is not your average fourteen-year-old boy! He is sucked out of our world and tossed into another; the world of Oomaldee. To top it off his mom is their long lost queen. Andy was charged with the task of helping to lift a 500-year-old curse on Oomaldee. Ms. Lee has a way of writing a totally believable, on the edge of your seat adventure that nails the content for her intended audience. Lee’s writing combines wit with a sense of suspense to keep readers on their toes. The fifth book in this series gets a little dark, with characters dying and some mild violence but nothing graphic or gory. It would be appropriate for any audience above nine or ten years old. I really like how the book has Andy coming to terms with the effects of lifting the curse, such as the king will die (he was the reason the curse started, and has lived 500+ years). I especially like that Andy really matures as a person in this book.

I give this book five out of five bookworms!fivebooks

Perfect Picture Book Friday! Timeless Thomas by Gene Barretta

16 Jan

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 a nice biography-type nonfiction book about one of my favorite historical inventors.

timelessthomasTimeless Thomas: How Thomas Edison Changed Our Lives
Written and illustrated by Gene Barretta
36 pages – ages 5+
Published by Henry Holt and Co. on July 17, 2012

Theme- Not giving up/Biography

Genre- Nonfiction

Opening and Synopsis- Opening Lines: “Have you ever thought about inventing something of your own? You’re never too young to try.

Thomas Alva Edison began experimenting when he was just a boy. That’s right. It was the beginning of a life dedicated to improving the world with his brilliant ideas and inventions.

Synopsis from GoodReads: “ 

timelessthomas1

What I Thought- I really liked how Mr. Barretta set this book up. Mr. Barretta focuses on things we have in the present day, and how they were inspired by Edison’s inventions. He explains how Edison worked, and how he failed several times. The book shows how through failure, reworking, and ingenuity, Edison succeeded. The message of failure is something I hear a lot about and I think it’s good for kids to hear how many times someone fails before they succeed. The illustrations share information and inject a bit of humor throughout the book. Mr. Barretta has created a nice biography picture book that is instructional, entertaining and inspiring.

Activities and Resources- Talk with your kids/students about how failure can create success. Did you know James Dyson failed over 5000 times before inventing his current version of his vacuum cleaner?!? Here is a cool video from him about failure.

You can virtually visit Monticello, Thomas Jefferson’s home in Charlottesville, Virginia. Click HERE to learn more about Jefferson and Monticello.

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

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