Monday, October 22, 2018

Middle Grade Books: Halloween Reading Round Up / #MarvelousMiddleGradeMonday


Happy Marvelous Middle Grade Monday! If you're looking some good books to read to get you in the Halloween spirit, check out these fantastic middle grade reads. There is definitely a little bit of something for everyone with these titles. Some are spooky, but not all the ones listed here. Some are just fun reads, some have dragons, monsters, witches, and a variety of other fun elements to them. Yes, most all of these books can definitely be read all year long. Be sure to click on the titles beneath the books featured to find out more about each title.








There are a number of great books to add to your Halloween reading round ups. These are just a few of the ones I'd recommend. What are some other middle grade books you'd recommend picking up for Halloween reading? 

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

THE DARKDEEP by Ally Condie and Brendan Reichs / Book Review #TheDarkDeep


By: Ally Condie & Brendan Reichs
Published by: Bloomsbury
Released on: October 2nd, 2018
Series: The Darkdeep #1
Purchase Links
Add it to Goodreads 
Rating: 4 owlets
An arc of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review

When a bullying incident sends twelve-year-old Nico Holland over the edge of a cliff into the icy waters of Still Cove, where no one ever goes, friends Tyler and Ella - and even 'cool kid' Opal -rush to his rescue... only to discover an island hidden in the swirling mists below.

Shrouded by dense trees and murky tides, the island appears uninhabited, although the kids can't quite shake the feeling that something about it is off. Their suspicions grow when they stumble upon an abandoned houseboat with an array of curiosities inside: odd-looking weapons, unnerving portraits, maps to places they've never heard of, and a glass jar containing something completely unidentifiable.

As the group delves deeper into the unknown, their discoveries - and their lives -begin to intertwine in weird and creepy ways. Something ancient has awakened... and it knows their wishes and dreams - and their darkest, most terrible secrets. Do they have what it takes to face the shadowy things that lurk within their own hearts?


This book is a creeptastic, hard to put down, kind of read! I'm thrilled that Condie and Reichs finally wrote a book together. Their joint middle grade debut did not disappoint either. It is the right amount of creep, mixed with a little dark, but not in the terrifying Stephen King kind of way, and given a good dose of hard to put down, and wondering what was going to happen next. 

Sure it may give you some goose bumps, and make you jumpy, but this book is also about friendship, self confidence, over coming fear, bullying, and empathy. The friendship in this book was an element I really enjoyed. I loved seeing how each of the characters grew individually, and collectively. For once, I don't have a favorite character, as each of them brought something unique to the story. I liked getting to know each of them.

The Darkdeep on the other hand.....well that's just say I have a feeling there's a lot more to this than we've learned about in this book. The history to this place was equally creepy and intriguing. I'm definitely intrigued and want to know more. Just look at the cover and tell me that doesn't make you want to learn more.... haha On serious note, I do love that cover. It illustrates the Darkdeep perfectly. 

What a fun, fast paced, action packed read. It's the perfect blend of thrilling, and mystery. This is the kind of books that gives you just enough answers that you're hooked, but still leaves you wanting to know more. I can hardly wait to pick up the second book in this series. 

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

PROJEKT 1065: A Novel of World War II by Alan Gratz / Book Review #Projekt1065


By: Alan Gratz
Published by: Scholastic Press
Released on: October 11th, 2016
Ages: 12 & up
Purchase Links
Add it to Goodreads
Rating: 4 owlets 
Source: borrowed library book

Infiltrate. Befriend. Sabotage.

World War II is raging. Michael O'Shaunessey, originally from Ireland, now lives in Nazi Germany with his parents. Like the other boys in his school, Michael is a member of the Hitler Youth.

But Michael has a secret. He and his parents are spies.

Michael despises everything the Nazis stand for. But he joins in the Hitler Youth's horrific games and book burnings, playing the part so he can gain insider knowledge.

When Michael learns about Projekt 1065, a secret Nazi war mission, things get even more complicated. He must prove his loyalty to the Hitler Youth at all costs -- even if it means risking everything he cares about.

Including... his own life.

From acclaimed author Alan Gratz (Prisoner B-3087) comes a pulse-pounding novel about facing fears and fighting for what matters most.


WOW, what a read! I feel like I stepped back in time, during WWII, when this book was set. Even though you know the outcome of WWII, this pulse pounding novel will have you questioning what you'd do if you were in Michael's position. Would you face your fears, like he learns to do, and fight for what you believe to be right, even if those around are against don't? 

Gratz definitely knows how to make his readers feel as though they're apart of this story vs just reading about. He makes his readers feel as though they've jumped back into time, and are watching history unravel. I’m so impressed with the research that went into this story. I appreciated the way Gratz interwove history and historical contexts into this fictional story. It felt like a real story. 

I'm not sure why it's taking me this long to read one of Gratz's books. After hearing Alan speak at a middle grade library I was working in, I had to pick up this book. The kids love his books, and really enjoyed hearing him talk about writing this book, as well as a few of his others, and the research and inspiration that went into writing them. I highly recommend checking out this book, along with this others. 

Monday, October 15, 2018

THE DAY WAR CAME by Nicola Davies / Book Review #TheDayWarCame


By: Nicola Davies
Illustrated by: Rebecca Cobb
Published by: Candlewick Press
Released on: September 4th, 2018
Ages: 6 & up 
Purchase Links
Add it to Goodreads
Rating: 5 Owlets
A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review

A moving, poetic narrative and child-friendly illustrations follow the heartbreaking, ultimately hopeful journey of a little girl who is forced to become a refugee.

The day war came there were flowers on the windowsill and my father sang my baby brother back to sleep.

Imagine if, on an ordinary day, after a morning of studying tadpoles and drawing birds at school, war came to your town and turned it to rubble. Imagine if you lost everything and everyone, and you had to make a dangerous journey all alone. Imagine that there was no welcome at the end, and no room for you to even take a seat at school. And then a child, just like you, gave you something ordinary but so very, very precious. In lyrical, deeply affecting language, Nicola Davies's text combines with Rebecca Cobb's expressive illustrations to evoke the experience of a child who sees war take away all that she knows.



With it's beautiful, childlike illustrations, and it's powerful message written with children in mind, this book is a must read for all ages! Nicola Davies's story, combined with Rebecca Cobb's illustrations, tell the story of a young child who is forced to become a refugee. 

Written from the point of view of a young girl who goes about her day when suddenly war hits her town. Now everything this young girl loved, and enjoyed doing, is gone. Forced to flew, and look for a new home, this young girl's brave, and heartbreaking journey will invoke empathy and understanding from even this book's youngest readers. 

What this powerful story tells, and helps readers see, and understand on a child's level, is how war destroys and takes away all that people know. Like the young girl in this story, war makes refugees out of people who have had everything taken from them, including their homes, their families, their way of lives, and their sense of belonging. This book is a moving reminder that like this child, refugees, are individuals just like the rest of us, and have the same wants and needs we all have. 

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

CITY OF GHOSTS by Victoria Schwab / Book Review #CityofGhosts


By: Victoria Schwab
Published by: Scholastic
Released on: August 28th, 2018
Ages: 9 & up
SeriesCassidy Blake #1
Purchase Links
Add it to Goodreads
Rating: 5 owlets 
An arc of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review

Cassidy Blake's parents are The Inspecters, a (somewhat inept) ghost-hunting team. But Cass herself can really see ghosts. In fact, her best friend, Jacob, just happens to be one.

When The Inspecters head to ultra-haunted Edinburgh, Scotland, for their new TV show, Cass and Jacob come along. In Scotland, Cass is surrounded by ghosts, not all of them friendly. Then she meets Lara, a girl who can also see the dead. But Lara tells Cassidy that as an In-betweener, their job is to send ghosts permanently beyond the Veil.

Cass isn't sure about her new mission, but she does know the sinister Red Raven haunting the city doesn't belong in her world. Cassidy's powers will draw her into an epic fight that stretches through the worlds of the living and the dead, in order to save herself.


A fantastic middle grade debut! I love it when YA authors can successfully cross over to the middle grade realm of story telling. Victoria Schwab's talent for vivid story telling, has done just that. What I have admired about her YA books is still very present in City of Ghosts, only it's written with a younger audience in mind. 

City of Ghosts is a book with a setting that beautifully and effortlessly comes to life. It's paired with an atmospheric feel that is crucial when writing a ghost story. Schwab makes readers feel as through they're getting their own personal tour of Edinburgh, and are thrust not only into the mix of today's bustle, they also get a glimpse of the city's rich, ghostly history that Cass sees. I absolutely loved this book's atmosphere and feeling as though I was an Edinburgh along side Cass, and her family. 

Character wise, this story has some great, easy to like characters. Like their story, they are straightforward, and fun to get to know. I loved the relationship Cass, and her ghost friend, Jacob have, and finding out why they're drawn to each other. That was a twist I wasn't excepting. Ghost wise, there may be a ghost or two, or possibly more that my younger reader self would have been equally freaked out by, and intrigued with. 

I absolutely love that while this book is in modern day Edinburgh, the historical part of this city is very much alive. That part of this story is what really drew in. It's obvious Schwab did a lot of research. She definitely makes the perfect ghost hunting tour guide. 

If you're looking for a good ghost story, I highly recommend picking up this book! It's an engaging, entertaining, fast past, paranormal read with age appropriate darkness I've come to except in a Victoria Schwab book. I can hardly wait to read the next book in this series.

Thursday, October 4, 2018

THE STORM RUNNER by J.C. Cervantes / Giveaway #TheStormRunner


I'm thrilled to team up with Disney Hyperion to celebrate the recent release of THE STORM RUNNER by J.C. Cervantes, the next book in the Rick Riordan Presents imprint. Thank you to Disney, I have a fantastic prize pack that (1) one lucky winner will receive. First, before you enter to win, here's a little bit about THE STORM RUNNER. 

ABOUT THE BOOK



By: J.C. Cervantes
Published byRick Riordan Presents, an imprint of Disney Book Group
Released onSeptember 18, 2018
Series: A Storm Runner #1
Ages: 10-14
Purchase from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Books-A-Million | Indie Bound
Learn more about the book at ReadRiordan.com

How can one boy with a limp stop the Maya god of death, disaster, and darkness from destroying the world?

Zane has always enjoyed exploring the dormant volcano near his home in New Mexico, even though hiking it is challenging. He'd much rather hang out there with his dog, Rosie, than go to middle school, where kids call him Sir Limps a Lot, McGimpster, or Uno – for his one good leg. 

What Zane doesn't know is that the volcano is a gateway to another world and he is at the center of a powerful prophecy. A new girl at school, Brooks, informs him that he's destined to release an evil god from the ancient Maya relic he is imprisoned in--unless she can find and remove it first. Together they return to the volcano, where all kinds of crazy happens. Brooks turns into a hawk, a demon attacks them in a cave, and Rosie gives her all while trying to protect Zane. When Zane decides to save his dog no matter the cost, he is thrust into an adventure full of surprising discoveries, dangerous secrets, and an all-out war between the gods, one of whom happens to be his father. 

To survive, Zane will have to become the Storm Runner. But how can he run when he can't even walk well without a cane?


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

J. C. Cervantes is the author of Tortilla Sun, which was called "a beautiful and engaging debut" by Kirkus, an "imaginative, yet grounded novel" by Publishers Weekly, and "lean and lightly spiced with evocative metaphor" by School Library JournalTortilla Sun was a 2010 New Voices pick by the American Booksellers Association and it was named to Bank Street's 2011 Best Book List. When Jennifer isn't reading or writing, she helping her husband with his gubernatorial campaign.


ABOUT RICK RIORDAN PRESENTS

The Rick Riordan Presents imprint is dedicated to providing entertaining middle grade fiction based on various world mythologies. Rick Riordan is involved in the selection, editing, and promotion of these books, working with great authors to tell exciting stories inspired by the mythologies of their own heritages. Learn more about the imprint and its current and upcoming titles on their official site. 


ENTER TO WIN


MYTHOLOGY 101: RICK RIORDAN PRESENTS
One (1) winner will receive a trio of introductory mythology tales from a variety of cultures, including:
  • The Storm Runner by J.C. Cervantes;
  • Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi;
  • and The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan!

Giveaway open to US addresses only.
Prizing and samples provided by Disney Book Group.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, October 1, 2018

SIR SIMON: SUPER SCARER by Cale Atkinson / Book Review #SirSimonSuperScarer


Written & Illustrated by: Cale Atkinson
Published by: Tundra Books
Released on: September 4th, 2018
Ages: 4 & up
Purchase Links
Add it to Goodreads
Rating: 5 Owlets
An ebook was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review

A delightful, funny story of friendship, ghost chores, a spooky house and a professional haunter.

Meet Sir Simon, Super Scarer. He's a professional ghost who has been transferred to his first house. And just in time! He was getting tired of haunting bus stops and forests and potatoes. And to top it off, this house is occupied by an old lady -- they're the easiest to haunt!

But things don't go as planned when it turns out a KID comes with this old lady. Chester spots Simon immediately and peppers him with questions. Simon is exasperated. . . until he realizes he can trick Chester into doing his ghost chores. Spooky sounds, footsteps in the attic, creaks on the stairs -- these things don't happen on their own, you know!

After a long night of haunting, it seems that maybe Chester isn't cut out to be a ghost, so Simon decides to help with Chester's human chores. Turns out Simon isn't cut out for human chores either.

But maybe they're both cut out to be friends . . .


A fun Halloween read. Sir Simon is the kind of ghost you'd want to make friends with. He is really friendly. He teaches readers what life as a ghost is like, and in the process he makes friends with a young boy who's not afraid of ghosts. Believe it or not, even ghosts have chores. Though Sir Simon's chores seem a lot more fun than the mundane ones we all have to do.


Though this book is the perfect new release to add to your Halloween picture book collection, this story comes with a beautiful message as well. What Sir Simon and the young boy teach readers, is that despite having differences, you can still be friends with those who are different than you.


If the story and the message weren't convincing enough to pick up this book, the illustrations are. These illustrations are lively. I've never thought of a ghost as cute or adorable, but Sir Simon is. Cale Atkinson is one of our favorite illustrators. When you pick up this book, you'll see why. If you're looking for a new book to add to your Halloween picture book collection, add this one! Really, this one can be read all year long. I'm sure Sir Simon would agree. After all, ghosts like Sir Simon love to hang around all year long. 


Wednesday, September 26, 2018

J IS FOR JACK-O'-LANTERN: A Halloween Alphabet by Denise Brennan Nelson / Book Review


Written by: Denise Brennan-Nelson
Illustrated by: Donald Wu
Published by: Sleeping Bear Press
Released on: June 29th, 2009
Ages: 3 & up
Purchase Links
Add it to Goodreads
Rating: 4 Owlets 
Source: School Library 

Who lit the first jack-o'-lantern? What creature of the night must return to his grave by dawn? And why do we holler "Trick or treat"? J is for Jack-O'-Lantern: A Halloween Alphabet invites you to come along on this A-Z adventure and celebration of all things that "go bump in the night."
Poetry and prose combine to entertain and educate.
H is for Haunted House
A haunted house; you better beware.
Only enter if you dare.
Monsters lurking, looking mean--
Just can't wait to make you scream!
Classic autumn games, jokes, and recipes (including gooey deviled egg eyeballs!) help round out the Halloween festivities. Atmospheric artwork blends just enough fun with fright to provide the perfect backdrop.


This book is must for any Halloween book round up. The Halloween alphabet is fun to read, and appealing to young readers as they discover all Halloween offers from letters A-Z. To add to the book's overall appeal, included in the margins for each letter, is a brief history on the Halloween/fall item featured. For example, Autumn. A is for Autumn. Included with the ABC mention of Autumn  there's also a brief history on it. It's interesting to learn about various Halloween traditions, and things associated with Halloween. To add to the over all festive appeal are some really cute illustrations that give the book a fun, festive atmospheric feel. 

Monday, September 24, 2018

GIRAFFE PROBLEMS by Jory John & Lane Smith / Blog Tour: Book Review #GiraffeProblems


Welcome to the next stop in the GIRAFFE PROBLEMS blog tour, hosted by Penguin Random House. Out TOMORROW, the creators of the popular children's book, Penguin Problems, are at it again. This time instead of penguins, readers will be falling in love with a giraffe.

ABOUT THE BOOK

By: Jory John 
Illustrated by: Lane Smith
Published by: Penguin Random House 
Released on: September 25th, 2018
Ages: 3 & up
Purchase Links
Add it to Goodreads
Rating: 5 Owlets 
A bound arc of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review

Penguins aren't the only animals with problems. . . . A second hilarious collaboration from picture-book superstars Lane Smith and Jory John!

Can you guess what's making this giraffe self-conscious? Could it be . . . HIS ENORMOUS NECK Yes, it's exactly that--how on earth did you figure it out?

Cyrus the giraffe can't understand why his neck is as long and bendy and, well, ridiculous as it is. No other animal has a neck this absurd. He's tried disguising it, dressing it up, strategically hiding it behind bushes--honestly, anything you can think of, he's tried.

Just when he has exhausted his neck-hiding options and is about to throw in the towel, a turtle swoops in (well, ambles in, very slowly) and helps him understand that his neck has a purpose, and looks excellent in a bow tie.

Jory John and Lane Smith have truly outdone themselves in this companion book to Penguin Problems.


MY REVIEW 

A wonderful follow up to Penguin Problems, Jory and Lane have created another  memorable picture book with a message that readers of all ages can take to heart. You'll find that penguins aren't the only animals this picture book duo will have readers falling in love with. A giraffe and turtle are equally as cute. 

When a self conscious giraffe who feels his neck causes him problems, meets a turtle who is just a self conscious of his short neck, a story about perspective unfolds. What Cyrus the giraffe doesn't realize until he meets his new friend, is all the wonderful things his long neck allow him to do. This story is told in a way that even the youngest of readers can understand, and relate to. 

We loved this book. It's cute illustrations and wonderful message make this a book worthy of picking up. It's great for reading out loud at story time or during bedtime reading. 

Thursday, September 20, 2018

BRUCE'S BIG MOVE by Ryan T. Higgins / Book Review


Written & Illustrated by: Ryan T. Higgins
Published by: Disney Hyperion 
Released on: September 26th, 2017
Series: Bruce #3
Ages: 3 & up
Purchase Links
Add it to Goodreads
Rating: 5 Owlets 
A bound arc of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review


After the events of Hotel Bruce, our favorite curmudgeonly bear shares his home with not only his four geese, but three rowdy mice besides! Fed up with their shenanigans, Bruce sets off to find a rodent-free household. But as usual, nothing goes quite according to plan…
A hilarious sequel for fans of the previous Bruce books, as well as a standalone discovery for new readers, Bruce’s next reluctant adventure is sure to keep kids giggling.
The third book in one of our favorite picture book series, the lovable, and ever grumpy bear, BRUCE is back! Picking up where the second book left off, Bruce is in need of more space. Once again, he finds that some of the things that might make him grumpy, are the very things that make his geese happy. What's a bear to do? 

This is another hilarious, and highly entertaining read. From Bruce's expressions, to the events that unfold. Bruce's stories are never short on laughter. He won't like this comment, but his stories are heartwarming, and ones the entire family can enjoy. Be sure to look carefully through out the entire book. There are always fun details Ryan includes in his books.  

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

WHEN THE WORLD IS FULL OF FRIENDS by Gillian Shields / Book Review #WhenTheWorldIsFullOfFriends


By: Gillian Shields
Illustrated by: Anna Currey
Published by: Bloomsbury
Released on: February 20th, 2018
Ages: 3 & up
Purchase Links
Add it to Goodreads
Rating: 5 Owlets 
A bound arc of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review

When the world 
is full of friends,
the fun and laughter
never ends.

Albert, Tom, Flossie, and Pipkin love to play. And while they have fun inventing games together, their biggest wish is to have friends to share them with. One day, something magical happens. A family of squirrels moves in across the stream! They could be the perfect friends--but how will they cross the stream?

With a little help from Father Rabbit, Albert, Tom, Flossie, and Pipkin will discover just how wonderful it is when the world is full of friends. This touching story from the revered team behind When the World Is Ready for Bed and When the World Was Waiting for You will warm the hearts of readers young and old.


A simplistic story about friendship, imagination, teamwork, and plenty of outdoor play. This adorable story about a family of bunnies who discovers there are a new family of squirrels that moved in across the stream. With no way to get to them to play, the siblings use their imagination, and team work to come up with a solution. We loved the timeless, beautiful illustrations that made this story easily come to life. This book would make a great read aloud for story time reading.  

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

STORM by Sam Usher / Book Review #Storm


Written & Illustrated by: Sam Usher
Published by: Templar Books 
Released on: September 4th, 2018
Ages: 3 & up
Purchase Links
Rating: 4.5 Owlets - I really enjoyed this book!
A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review

Despite the storm weather, a boy and his granddad decide it's the perfect day for kite flying. First they have to find the kite... then their adventure really takes off!

If this book doesn't get you in the mood for Fall, I don't know what book will. With it's beautiful fall colors, the illustrations through out this book bring to life the bond and adventure a grandfather and his grandson share on stormy afternoon. The lively story is one that will engage readers of all ages. It's one that will resonate with older ones as well. I loved this book's illustrations. STORM is one book I'd recommend picking up, and adding to your seasonal books collection. 

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

SANTA BRUCE by Ryan T. Higgins / Book Review #SantaBruce


Written & Illustrated by: Ryan T. Higgins
Published by: Disney Hyperion
Released on: September 4th, 2018
Series: Bruce #4
Ages: 3 & up
Purchase links
Rating: 5 Owlets
A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review


Everyone’s favorite curmudgeonly bear is back, and this time he and his goslings are gearing up for Christmas!
Bruce is a lot of things. He is a bear. He is a grump. He is a pretty decent cook. And he is a mother. One thing Bruce is not? Santa Claus. But that doesn’t stop the whole forest from lining up to give him their Christmas wishes when he becomes the victim of mistaken identity—again. Kids will howl with laughter as award-winning author-illustrator Ryan T. Higgins delivers another hilarious story about this bear who just can’t catch a break.
Santa Bruce is a great holiday read. Full of cheer, and out loud moments, Bruce the Bear can't seem to catch a break. A case of mistaken identity has him playing Santa Claus to all of his new woodland friends. Though Bruce would have you believe this book lacks any Christmas cheer, the geese, mice and all the other characters in this book would tell you other wise. This is one book that is worth picking up this upcoming holiday season. The illustrations and one-liners make this book one adults will enjoy as much as kids. Santa Bruce another great addition to one of our favorite picture book series. 

Monday, September 10, 2018

HERSTORY: 50 Women and Girls Who Shook Up the World by Katherine Halligan / Book Review #Herstory50WomenAndGirlsWhoShookUpTheWorld


By: Katherine Halligan
Illustrated by: Sarah Walsh
Published by: Simon & Schuster
To Be Released on: September 11th, 2018
Ages: 8 & up
Purchase Links
Rating: 5 Owlets 
A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review

Move aside history—it’s time for herstory.

Celebrate fifty inspiring and powerful women who changed the world and left their mark in this lavishly illustrated biography compilation that’s perfect for fans of Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls and She Persisted. 

Throughout history, girls have often been discussed in terms of what they couldn’t or shouldn’t do.

Not anymore.

It’s time for herstory—a celebration of not only what girls can do, but the remarkable things women have already accomplished, even when others tried to stop them.

In this uplifting and inspiring book, follow the stories of fifty powerhouse women from around the world and across time who each managed to change the world as they knew it forever. Telling the stories of their childhood, the challenges they faced, and the impact of their achievements, each lavishly illustrated spread is a celebration of girl power in its many forms. From astronauts to activists, musicians to mathematicians, these women are sure to motivate young readers of all backgrounds to focus not on the can’ts and shouldn’ts, but on what they can do: anything!


An inspiring collection of 50 women and girls who shook up the world. This book is one that will inspire readers of all ages. With it's compilation of brief histories on each person featured, this book is a great introduction into some ordinary people who have done some extraordinary things. From historical to modern day, these 50 women and girls have left their mark on the world, and continue to do so today. Not only is this book great for elementary school research papers, it also makes a great addition to both classroom and school libraries. 

Friday, September 7, 2018

MONSTER BOOGIE by Laurie Berkner / Book Review


By: Laurie Berkner
Illustrated by: Ben Clanton
Published by: Simon & Schuster
Released on: July 24th, 2018
Ages: 4 & up
Purchase Links
A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review

Laurie Berkner, “the queen of children’s music” (People), pairs the lyrics of her infectious hit song with Ben Clanton’s whimsical illustrations in this groovy and adorable picture book—a must-have for fans of Laurie, dancing, and all things monstrous!

I’m the biggest monster
that you’ve ever seen!
My eyes are purple
and my teeth are green.
I’m big and I’m scary,
you know what I mean?
And this is what I like to do… 


Boogie away those bedtime fears and embrace your inner monster with Monster Boogie, based on Laurie Berkner’s irresistibly fun song and featuring lively, playful artwork by Ben Clanton!

I do the monster boogie.
So can you!
Rraaaahhh!


A fun, entertaining read. With bright illustrations, repetition and rhyming, kids will love having this book read out loud to them, as much as they'll enjoy reading it on their own. Be warned, it's definitely a challenge to not sing the words as you read it out loud. You can find the song, and her video for it on Youtube. This book is great for music and story time.

Thursday, September 6, 2018

SNOW PONY and the SEVEN MINIATURE PONIES by Christian Trimmer / Book Review

 

By: Christian Trimmer
Illustrated by: Jessie Sima 
Published by: Simon & Schuster
Ages: 4 & up
Where to buy links
Rating: 4 owlets
A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review 

From Christian Trimmer and bestselling illustrator Jessie Sima comes an adorable and imaginative twist on the tale of Snow White…with lots more ponies!

Sweet Snow Pony is loved by all for her beautiful coat as white as snow and her mane as black as ebony. Children come to her farm from all over just to have her braid their hair and teach them line dancing.

But not everyone loves Snow Pony. Jealous Queenie hatches an evil plan to make Snow Pony run away from the stable by planting a trail of apples into the woods and before long Snow Pony is lost! Full of delicious apples but all alone in the woods, Snow Pony stumbles upon the home of seven miniature ponies. The mini-ponies couldn’t be cuter, especially with Snow Pony’s braids, but they don’t have quite the same moves as the kids back on the farm.

Will her new friends help her find her way home? Or will the evil Queenie get her way?


A fun, fractured fairytale with twists, and humor both kids and adults will appreciate. The illustrations for this picture book are adorable. The seven ponies definitely add to the over all humor. The story itself is one that will resonate with kids, especially the ending.

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

OCEAN MEETS SKY by The Fan Brothers / Book Review #OceanMeetsSky


Written and Illustrated by: Terry and Eric Fan
Published by: Simon & Schuster
Released on: May 2018
Ages: 4 & up
Purchase from: The Publisher | Amazon | B&N | BAM
Rating: 5 Owlets 
A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review

It’s a good day for sailing.

Finn lives by the sea and the sea lives by him. Every time he looks out his window it’s a constant reminder of the stories his grandfather told him about the place where the ocean meets the sky. Where whales and jellyfish soar and birds and castles float.

Finn’s grandfather is gone now but Finn knows the perfect way to honor him. He’ll build his own ship and sail out to find this magical place himself!

And when he arrives, maybe, just maybe, he’ll find something he didn’t know he was looking for.


The creators of THE NIGHT GARDENER have done it again. Their newest release, OCEAN MEETS SKY, is a stunning picture book about one boy's journey to find the place his grandfather always told him about. Captivating illustrations will make readers feels as though they're sailing along side Finn on his journey to find where the ocean meets the sky. 

This book is visually stunning. The whimsical illustrations alone make this book one that's worth picking up. The story itself is beautifully told. Finn's story will resonate with kids who are missing someone they love. This book is definitely on the top of my list of 2018 favorite picture books. I'm going to be shocked if this book doesn't win some kind of award.

A SNEAK PEAK INSIDE THE BOOK




*All images are owned by Simon & Schuster 
I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves. ~ Anna Quindlen

Good children's literature appeals not only to
the child in the adult, but to the adult in the child.
~ Anonymous ~