Tag Archives: Kids Books

Monsterrific Tales: Books 5 & 6 by David Lubar

20 Oct

October is the month of Halloween so lets talk monsters! Check out this great series of monsterous stories! The Monsterrific Tales series by David Lubar is a fun series with a ghoulish spin! The books are meant for younger kids and they are a good length for that. I like that Mr. Lubar mixes monsters with a message. Here is the publisher’s description of the series;

Washington Irving Elementary School has a bit of a monster problem. Sebastian and his friends take turns experiencing life as a vampire, a werewolf, a witch, and ghost. Even one of his teachers and a school bully get “monsterized.” Who will be next? Read all six books in this series of scary and funny Monsterrific Tales!

Check out my review of book 4 in the series “The Wavering Werewolf” HERE.

I don’t normally like monster books, but this series is actually pretty cool. The books aren’t really about the horror aspect, but dealing with being a monster (and maybe turning back).  The stories have a monster theme to them, but they have a lot of humor and are just a fun read.

Here are the latest spooktacular books in the series!

 

gloomyThe Gloomy Ghost (Monsterrific Tales #5)

By David Lubar

144 pages – ages 8+

Published by Starscape on July 8, 2014

Series: Monsterrific Tales
Hardcover: 144 pages
Publisher: Starscape; Reprint edition (July 8, 2014)

Summary – [From Amazon]

“First it was Sebastian, then Angie. Now it’s little brother Rory’s turn to be “monsterized!” One minute he’s a normal kid hanging out in his backyard. The next, he finds himself walking through stuff: the back porch, walls, even people! What’s a ghostly kid to do? Rory decides to find some other spirits and ask them how to get “un-ghosted.” So he heads up to the local haunted house to give it a try. What Rory doesn’t know is that if he doesn’t get the answer soon, he’ll only have a ghost of a chance of ever being a kid again…”

What I Thought – This is a fun story. I loved the description of the haunted house – just enough spookiness for the age range. The ghosts in the haunted house were cool characters. I like how Rory solves his problem by using his ghostly powers to get his brother’s attention. Rory is a pretty cute, very smart kindergarten-aged boy. You really end up caring for him and hope that he makes it back to the living. Mr. Lubar has written a great addition to his series! I recommend it to reluctant readers because of its short length, and the fact that the topic draws in lots of kids! It’s a great read for a rainy, or should I say gloomy, day! ;)

I give this book four out of five bookworms!fourbooks

 

 

bullybugThe Bully Bug (Monsterrific Tales #6)

By David Lubar

144 pages – ages 8+

Published by Starscape on September 2, 2014

Summary – [From Amazon]

“Lud Mellon gets bitten by a bevy of bugs in his basement and the next thing he knows, he’s crawling up walls, drooling on his food, and rolling around in garbage. Turning into a giant insect seems fun at first, almost like having superpowers. But when his dad calls in the exterminators, Lud has to figure out how to stop his transformation before he gets squashed like a bug.”

What I thought – This is a wonderful book with a neat perspective. In the other books, Lud and the Mellon family are always considered the bullies (by the other main characters), so this was an interesting take on the monster story, mostly because of the fact that Lud needs the help of one of the kids he accidentally bullied. Apparently, Lud doesn’t mean to be a bully (doesn’t realize he is bullying, but knows he says some somewhat mean things, like “watch where you walk” when a kid runs into him), he just doesn’t like to talk to many people for long amounts of time, and his outward actions look/sound like bullying (laughing because a character looks so scared, etc.). I like how he ends up making a friend or two in the book, but also comes out of his shell (pun not intended). This is a great series that I think a lot of kids could get into!

I give this book five out of five bookworms!fivebooks

Want to learn more?!? Visit David Lubar’s author website by clicking HERE.

 

Book Launch Tour! Andy Smithson: Disgrace of the Unicorn’s Honor by L.R.W. Lee

15 Oct

 

andysmith

unicornAndy Smithson Book 3: Disgrace of the Unicorn’s Honor

by L.R.W. Lee

252 pages – ages 9+
Published by CreateSpace  on September 23, 2014

Summary- Author’s summary]

Andy returns to Oomaldee and learns the next ingredient to collect is the horn of a unicorn. Not unexpectedly, as he and his company embark upon their quest, they face stiff opposition from the evil King Abaddon, a foreign enemy who seeks to conquer that world. The physical battle, while intense, pales in comparison, however, to his conflicted heart, when a seductive voice calls to Andy, tempting him to surrender the unicorn horn in exchange for a promise to preserve his mom when he breaks the curse. Desperate to save her, he falls for the lie and puts in jeopardy his ability to end the curse.

What I liked- Mrs. Lee has written another great book in the Andy Smithson series. In the newest book, Andy Smithson: Disgrace of the Unicorn’s Honor, Andy really grows as a person. It made me like his character even more. In addition to the vivid description of the land of Oomaldee, the action and twists that Mrs. Lee packs into this story makes it a totally enjoyable read. The plot of the story captures the reader’s attention and Mrs. Lee’s writing style keeps you reading until the very last word. I especially like the unusual animal inhabitants of Oolmaldee (like dragons, unicorns and “herewolves”). They add a lot to this fantastic world. Mrs. Lee has written a long-lasting story that is part of one of my favorite series.

I give this book 5 out of 5 bookworms! fivebooks

 

Want to learn more? Visit Mrs. Lee’s website HERE

 

Review! Little Dead Riding Hood by Amie Borst and Bethanie Borst

14 Oct

It’s October and time for some monstrously fun books! Here is one that is released today!

littledead

Little Dead Riding Hood

By Amie and Bethanie Borst

Illustrated by Rachael Caringella

320 pages – ages 9+
Series: Scarily Ever Laughter
Published by Jolly Fish Press on October 14, 2014

Scarlet Small was new in town. Her dad, Drac, is in the army, and they moved a lot. Scarlet was scared of her new school. It smelled of werewolf. It didn’t help that at her old school, she was friendless and ridiculed. A lot. Did I happen to mention that Scarlet Small and her “parents” are vampires? And that Scarlet is over a century old? In a 12-year-old body? So far, school is going great for her, until Scarlet meets Ethan. She is sure that he is the werewolf she smells, which is bad, because a werewolf’s bite is the only thing that can kill a vampire. And he seems to hate her. Could things get any worse for a pre-teen vampire?

This is a fun book and it is the second in the Scarily Ever Laughter Series (Cinderskella is the first). The Borst mother-daughter team have written monster characters that even I (who really doesn’t like monster stories) like. There is humor in the story, which is always a plus for me. The characters act like middle schoolers and have many of the same issues – fitting in, doing well in school (only in monster terms). I like the sense of fractured fairytales throughout the book. It adds to the enjoyment of reading it. I felt like I was really there with Scarlet as she went on with her story. The Borsts describe the setting very well – it gave the perfect feeling for the story – a small town with a humongous woods surrounding it. This story contains minor spoilers about Cinderskella so I’d read the books in order. Scarlet befriends Cindy (Cinderskella) in the story. I love Scarlet’s “parents’ ” names – Drac and Mort: Dracula and Morticia. The language in the book is kid appropriate. Obviously the book is about monsters and some of the things they do, but there is nothing graphic or unpleasant in the story. It’s a really nice story about trying to fit in. I hope that there are more books in this series!

I give this book 5 out of 5 bookworms!fivebooks

Want to learn more? Visit Amie Borst’s blog HERE! No, really visit her blog because they are having a blog scavenger hunt and you can win a copy of the book and CHOCOLATE! :)

cinderskel

Review! Tales of an Alien Invader by Michelle Brown

22 Sep

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000026_00095]Tales of an Alien Invader

By Michelle Brown

160 pages – ages 9+

Published by Pants On Fire Press on August 4, 2014

Felix Winters is not who he says he is. He is not the troubled son of two archaeologists. He is not visiting his aunt and uncle for a year while his parents are off on a dig. He is a Bopton, an alien species from a galaxy far, far away… Right now, he was sent to Earth to study it and he is to decide the fate of the world. Is the human race worthy of being? “Felix” must try to fit in with the Earthlings in order to study them. But there’s one problem that “Felix” encounters – he’s starting to think too much like a human…

This was an amazing book. I think the plot is a great one for an MG book. It is one that made me think about Felix’s purpose. I like that “Felix” isn’t evil. He is a normal alien, who was assigned to check out Earth and, well, to decide its fate. Ms. Brown’s writing style makes the book exciting and the story is explained well. Felix is a believable character (for an alien) who you really like. The character relations seem natural and I like the struggle Felix has with being too human.  It is interesting to see how he changes in his thoughts about Earthlings and their habits. At 160 pages the book was a fast read for me. I think I would have liked the story plot to be expanded a bit. I really enjoyed it and would have loved to have a longer book with this one. The book ends well, but also leaves room for a sequel – which I’d be very happy to read.

I give this book four out of five bookworms.fourbooks

Like Tales of an Alien Invader of Facebook HERE.

Learn more about Ms. Brown and her other books at her website HERE.

Review! Nanny X by Madelyn Rosenberg

17 Sep

nannyxNanny X
By Madelyn Rosenberg
112 pages – ages 7+
Published by Holiday House on September 15th, 2014

Summary- It’s never a good thing when an older woman with a baby bag, a gardening hat, reflective sunglasses, and a leather biker’s jacket shows up at your front doorstep, and your mother introduces her as your new nanny. At the very least, it’s not normal. And when you see her talking into diapers (which reply back?!?!?…) and when she gives you anchovy-and-peanut-butter sandwiches for lunch, you know something’s up (I mean, seriously? Who gives you peanut butter and anchovy sandwiches for lunch? That’s just not right. Not right at all…). That’s what Alison and Jake were thinking when Nanny X came into their lives. And pretty soon, Nanny X is saving their lives! Crazy! The woman serves them anchovies, and then… *grumbles something about how anchovies taste horrible* Well, nothing is as it seems (except those anchovies – they are what they seem – bad for your taste buds! ;) ) around here…

What I thought of it- Horrible. It was terrible. I can’t stand it.

-Wait. You want me to review the book, not the anchovy peanut butter sandwich? Ah. Well, in that case: The book was  awesome!

What I thought about the book- I love the idea of the whole book – spy nanny. Nanny X (besides her love of anchovies) is a marvelous character! Her baby bag of spy gadgets is pure awesomeness. I like how she handles situations. The story-line is great and the story will keep readers involved in it until the very end. There isn’t any major violence (a guy gets hit accidentally, Jake and Nanny X get kidnapped, etc.) so it is appropriate for all ages. It is perfect for young advanced readers. Alison and Jake are great main characters, and the chapters alternate between their POVs. The setting and the actions of the characters is realistic, and was described so well that I felt like I was there. Ms. Rosenberg has created a compelling spy story!

I give “Nanny X” five out of five bookworms!fivebooks

REVIEW REVIEW REVIEW! Picture Book Triple Play!!!

28 Jul

Have I got a great deal for you! Three great picture books! :D

planesgoPlanes Go

By Steve Light

16 pages – ages pre-K +

Published by Chronicle Books on August 12, 2014

About: Publisher’s description – “The helicopter goes, “PITTATATATA PITTATATATA PITTATATATA.” The jumbo jet goes “Wheeeeeeeee VRRRRRRRRRRUUUHHHHHHHHHMMM.” The propeller plane goes “HUK HUK HUK WHIRRRRRRR WHIRRRRRR.” Prepare for liftoff with 8 exciting aircraft and the noises they make in this irresistible board book! The long oversized format lends itself to the shape of the vehicles and stands out on the shelf and the boisterous text begs to be read aloud.  “

What I like about it: This book is simply amazing! The size of the book is perfect for young kids’ attention spans, and perfect for a bedtime story. Although the size of the book makes it difficult to fit on a book self – it’s 12 inches x 6 inches – the size and shape is kind of cool when it’s showing airplanes. The art is big, bright and wonderful! The text is easy do young kids can read along. I love the sound effects of the planes (and the one helicopter). Kids will love saying them out loud – I know I did! Mr. Light has other transportation themed picture books (Trains Go, Diggers Go) which I want to GO check out now. ;)

I give this book five out of five bookworms!fivebooks

To learn more about Mr. Light, please go to his website HERE.

Check out Sue Morris’ review of this book HERE.

Check out Chronicle Book’s page for this book HERE!

bearsseaThe Bear’s Sea Escape

By Benjamin Chaud

32 pages – ages 3-6

Published by Chronicle Books on August 5, 2014

About: From Inside Cover: “Papa Bear and Little Bear were trying to sleep… Suddenly, a case of mistaken identity results in a big adventure for Little Bear, with Papa Bear in pursuit!”

What I like about it: This is a wonderful Look&Find book. In the pages, you can search for Papa Bear and Little Bear in the crowded scenes. It is a very cute book, and Mr. Chaud’s art style adds lots of humor to it. Mr. Chaud is the guy who illustrated “I Didn’t Do My Homework Because…” (see my review HERE). I admire his art, and now I admire his writing skills. I love this book. I hope to be able to check out the first book in this series (The Bear’s Song). Take a look at an interior page!

BearsSeaEscape_INT_1G.indd

I give this book 5 out of 5 bookworms!fivebooks

Check out Chronicle Book’s page for this book HERE!

mixit

 

Mix It Up!

By Hervé Tullet

56 pages – ages pre-K +

Published by Chronicle Books on September 14, 2014

About: Publisher’s description “Accept Hervé Tullet’s irresistible invitation to mix it up in a dazzling adventure of whimsy and wonder. Follow the artist’s simple instructions, and suddenly colors appear, mix, splatter, and vanish in a world powered only by the reader’s imagination. Tullet—who joins such greats as Eric Carle and Leo Lionni as a master of his craft—sets readers on an extraordinary interactive journey all within the printed page. Tullet prompts plenty of giggles in addition to a profound understanding of colors, and once again displays his unique genius and vision in a work that is a glorious and richly satisfying companion to Press Here.  “

What I like about it: This is an amazing sequel to Press Here. M. Tullet is a great author, and he has a whimsical style for his books. :) I think that tons of kids would enjoy this. Mix It Up has lots of interactiveness in it – all without flaps or apps! I have fun doing the instructions. This book introduces the mixing of colors (blue + yellow = green, add white to lighten, etc.), in simple instructions, as in below. It is quite fun to do and it is super educational. Make sure to get this one for your pre-schooler or kindergartener!

mixitint

I give this book 5 out of 5 bookworms!fivebooks

To learn more about M. Tullet, click HERE to go to his website.

Visit the Chronicle Books page for this book HERE.

Book Review – Kat McGee Saves America! by Kristin Riddick

25 Jul

katmcgeeKat McGee Saves America!

By Kristin Riddick

104 pages – ages 7+

Published by In This Together Media on June 2, 2014 (ebook)

After her adventures at the North Pole and Treatsville, Kat McGee was ready to just sit back and relax for the 4th of July. But that doesn’t go as planned. When her Gram asks the McGee kids what they know about the 4th of July, the kids don’t really answer, Gram takes them to Philadelphia to learn about what happened there to help make the 4th of July so important. When Kat goes through a door and pops up in a place called Libertyland, she is shocked. Kat meets a giant lady in a greenish dress called Liberty. She is the governor of Libertyland, and she needs Kat’s help. The Declaration of Independence has gone missing, along with Thomas Jefferson, two days before he was supposed to present it to the Continental Congress! Kat must go back in time and find Jefferson and the Declaration before the fate of the United States is changed forever!

YAY – Historical fiction for younger kids! This was a great book. Ms. Riddick writes stories that are easy and fun to read. I like how she incorporated the time travel, and historical facts into this book. I really enjoyed Kat McGee and the School of Christmas Spirit (see my review HERE).  I didn’t know that there was a second in the series (this is book 3) and I saw on the publisher’s website a book 4 is planned (click HERE). Good news for parents looking for a great Magic School Bus type series for their kids! I like the character of Kat McGee a lot. She is a great girl who perseveres. I also like that she meets John Quincy Adams in the book (just because I am a super American history buff).  The story is packed with American history facts and kids will learn without knowing it! The cover art is pretty cool too. I am looking forward to reading the other books in this series.

I give Kat McGee Saves America five out of five bookworms!fivebooks

Rrrrrrggggle! (The Wesley Series) by Monsieur J and Mister F

30 Jan

wesley Rrrrrrggggle! (The Wesley Series)

By Monsieur J and Mister F

Illustrated by Papaya

139 pages – ages 9+

Available as an ebook

Published by Monsieur J & Mister F on November 10, 2013

Wesley is a 5th grader who just happens to be a zombie. He and his family have just moved to Stuff Falls, and he will go to Stuff Falls Middle School, which is a regular human school. Everyone knows that he’s a zombie, so he makes a friend with a half-zombie (whose mom is human, and dad is zombie), who shrinks every year because of him being half-zombie (I don’t really understand that, so please don’t ask detailed questions ;) ), and is obsessed with acting. He also becomes friends with a young yeti girl. The school bully, a human, is not one of Wesley’s friends, and has challenged him to a hard, deadly game, which will decide if  he will be left alone (or tormented) by the bully for the rest of the school year.

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I usually do not accept books about zombies or monsters. It usually isn’t my thing, but I try one every now and again. This is a book that I thoroughly enjoyed. I loved this because it didn’t focus on the scary “zombie brain-eater apocalypse” part of zombies. True, the zombies eat organs, but Wesley’s parents eat animal organs, and Wesley is a vegetarian. I love how in the story, zombie is passed via genes (like the half-zombie kid). I like that the story is about a young zombie trying to make friends and fit in. That was pretty funny. I like how Wesley’s dog is allergic to humans. :) The illustrations are cute and cartoon like. They are fun to look at and add to the story. You can see examples above this paragraph, and below it too. The story isn’t really about monsters, it’s about having a good family and good friends. I like how the authors puts a zombie in as the “new kid.” This book is a quick, humorous read, great for reluctant readers, especially boys. I can’t wait for book two!

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I give this book 5 out of 5 bookworms! fivebooks

Visit the Wesley the Zombie website HERE.

Like Wesley on Facebook HERE.

Follow Wesley on Twitter HERE.

BOOK BLASTY BLOG TOUR for The Perpetual Papers of the Pack of Pets (by Stanley and Katrina von Cat the Master of Wisdom and Knowledge)

17 Nov

WOO! IT’S THE STANLEY AND KATRINA BOOK BLASTY BLOG TOUR!!!

S&KBookBlastyTourPicWithGiveaway

Click on the picture above or the one on my side bar to ZOOM over to the Stanley and Katrina blog and find out how to enter to win the $25 Amazon gift card! Plus check out the other awesome stops on the tour!

Now – let me tell you again about The Perpetual Papers of the Pack of Pets! I just LOVE this book! :)

sandkThe Perpetual Papers of the Pack of Pets

by Stanley and Katrina von Cat the Master of Wisdom and Knowledge

86 pages – ages 8+

Published by CreateSpace  on December 21, 2012

Katrina Von Cat, Master of Wisdom and Knowledge, has had it with the dog eating her food all the time. Katrina realizes that they have been living in the same house for a while and she really hasn’t bothered to find out the dog’s name. So she writes a letter to the dog to ask his name and that he stop eating her food. Stanley (the dog) says the letter is nice, but he  won’t stop eating her food. Katrina decides to take Stanley to kitty court! And that’s just the start of the trouble they cause!

This story was extremely well written! The way it starts out with the cat and dog writing letters to each other is unique and also hysterical (the letter writing continues throughout the book)! I love the plot idea of two pets living in the same house for years and pretty much ignoring each other until the one starts eating the other’s food. The characters (Stanley and Katrina) were great and there are other great characters like Mandy the bluebird and Mr. Fluffypants, a guinea pig that lives next door who thinks he’s an astronaut, so he calls himself “Zorg.” I also love the story being told through the POV on the animals. This is a VERY fun book! The illustrations in it are pretty simple, but fun to look at. I reviewed this book a while ago, but it now has a cool new cover!!!

Five out of five bookworms for “The Perpetual Papers of the Pack of Pets”

fivebooks

The trailer is even hysterical! Check it out!


To learn more, please visit Stanley and Katrina’s website by clicking HERE.

Otis Dooda: Strange but True by Ellen Potter

14 Oct

otisdoodaOtis Dooda: Strange but True

Written by Ellen Potter

Illustrated by David Heatley

Soundtrack by David Heatley

225 pages – ages 7+

Published by Feiwel & Friends on June 4, 2013

Otis Dooda and his family have moved from the small town of Hog’s Head, to the big city of New York.  They live on the top floor of Tidwell Towers, neighboring a girl whose bedroom is on the ceiling, a boy who has a rare “French Gerbil Hound” (It’s really a miniature horse/pony, but the apartment doesn’t take horses, but it takes dogs), and some weird old lady. And it doesn’t help that there is some strange lady named “Ms. Yabby” who writes news that goes on in the Towers, called the Tidwell Tidbits – and, the fact is, most of it isn’t true, just rumors and gossip. That’s a problem, especially when it targets a new family in the Towers… The Doodas! And, apparently, Otis is cursed by a guy hiding in a potted plant, saying that Otis will break all of his bones before the next full-moon. Otis finds out that the weird potted plant guy’s predictions ALWAYS come true. What can a kid do?

I will say that I am a fan of Ellen Potter. I have read Spilling Ink and Slob. Ms. Potter didn’t disappoint me with Otis Dooda! It is a hilarious book! I really like the unrealistic (but possible) things that happen – it actually makes the story even more hilarious! I like the cannon that shoots you into a giant vat of marshmallow fluff, and Peaches (the horse/dog/rodent :) ). The illustrations are pretty funny, realistic, and they are incorporated into the text, similar to  Diary of a Wimpy Kid, or Big Nate. The illustration style of the book makes it more fun to read. Otis Dooda is great character and I LOVED reading about him. He makes some really dumb decisions in the book (but what kid doesn’t) that leads to hilarious outcomes! This is a great story that is guaranteed to make young boys (and girls) laugh out loud (I’m a BIG boy, and I sure laughed out loud! :D )! I am already waiting for Book 2 (which is titled Otis Dooda: Downright Dangerous and due out March 2014)!

I give this book 5 out of 5 bookworms!fivebooks

BONUS!  Did I mention that there is also a soundtrack for the book, which you can find HERE? Yes you heard me right! A book with its own sound track! It’s pretty good and VERY silly! Kids will love it! The soundtrack is written and performed by the very talented David Heatley (who also illustrated the book). It is based on the book and the 16-songs in the soundtrack go well with the story. I especially like the “Poodles of Mass Destruction” song. My sister liked paging through the book while the songs were playing and finding which parts of the book the song was about. The theme song is very catchy. In fact my sister and I sang the “Doo Doo Doo Doo Doo Dooda” for two days straight (then my dad started singing Surfin’ USA and we all agreed to just stop). You can hear samples of the soundtrack HERE!

Visit the Otis Dooda website HERE!

Check out the cool trailer for the book!

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