Friday, August 26, 2016

Enter to WIN a copy of MAXI'S SECRETS: (or what you can learn from a dog) by Lynn Plourde #NationalDogDay

It's National Dog Day! Having grown up with pets, including dogs, I love that man's best friend has a national day. While I currently don't have a dog, though I really wish I did, I love that there are plenty of books out there featuring dogs. I know, it's not even close to the same as having your own dog. Dogs are loyal companions, and no book can replace that, though books are a fabulous thing to have. 

Today we're teaming up with Penguin Random House to celebrate National Dog Day! What better way to celebrate than with a giveaway for Lynn Plourde’s newest book, MAXI'S SECRETS (or what you can learn from a dog), which is out now! Before you enter to win, here's a little bit about the book:


Secret #1: You can learn a lot from a dog you love. Timminy knows that moving to a new town just in time to start middle school when you are perfect bully bait is less than ideal. But he gets a great consolation prize in Maxi—a gentle giant of a dog who the family quickly discovers is deaf. Timminy is determined to do all he can to help Maxi—after all, his parents didn't return him because he was small. But when the going gets rough for Timminy, Maxi ends up being the one to help him—along with their neighbor, Abby, who doesn’t let her blindness define her. It turns out there’s more to everyone than what’s on the surface, whether it comes to Abby, Maxi, or even Timminy himself. (per the publisher)

Purchase from: The PublisherAmazon | B&N
Add it to Goodreads


The author of more than 30 picture books, MAXI'S SECRETS is Lynn Plourde’s debut middle-grade novel. She writes of her switch: “At sixty years of age, why write my first middle grade novel? To bring my dog Maggie back to life, of course. When my beloved Maggie died three years ago, I got greedy. I wanted more time with her… Maggie gave me permission to sprinkle make-believe on her truth. To add, take away, change whatever I needed to in order to make the best story I could. And so I did. I turned my medium-sized, black, Irish-setter-mix Maggie into a giant, white, Great Pyrenees Maxi.” 

A former speech-language therapist, LYNN PLOURDE worked in public schools for twenty-one years, and since then has done hundreds of visits to schools where she shares her books interactively, acts some out as plays, and teaches writing mini-lessons to students.   Lynn is a native Mainer who frequently uses her home state for inspiration when writing. She loves spending time outdoors snowshoing, walking, kayaking, and gardening, and currently lives in Winthrop, Maine with her husband.


“This story is a tender reminder that perceived shortcomings don't define us and that the power of friendship can't be underestimated.”Publishers Weekly

“This earnest boy-and-his-dog tale makes a strong case for Secret No. 11: ‘There's nothing so bad in the world that dog kisses won't make it better.’—Kirkus Reviews

“Perfect for reading aloud, any middle-level or younger student, especially dog lovers, will adore this humorous, heartwarming story of overcoming adversity.” –VOYA

“The characters are fully developed, and the delicate subjects of bullying and disabilities are dealt with deftly and with humor…heartbreaking, yet satisfying.”  --School Library Journal

“Maxi's story is one I know readers are going to love so much. I loved the friendship between Timminy and Abby, as well as the unlikely friendship found with Rory. All three of those characters are so multidimensional, giving readers a lot to think about as they navigate their own friendships during the difficult middle grade years… You really CAN learn a lot from a dog!” –Susan Dee, The Nerdy Book Club

“Recommended for kids and grownups who feel like they might never fit in, who worry about having their differences pointed out to all the world, and most of all who love dogs.” –Julie Falatko, author of Snappsy the Alligator (Did Not Ask to Be in This Book)


Thank you to Penguin Random House, 1 lucky winner will receive a copy of the book, as well a print of the cover art, which was illustrated by New York artist, Maira Kalman! To enter, please fill out the form below. US only. *Please see the giveaway form for terms & conditions 

The Uncorker of Ocean Bottles by Michelle Cuevas / Book Review

By: Michelle Cuevas
Illustrated by: Erin E. Stead
Published by: Dial Books
Released on: August 23rd, 2016
Ages: 4-8 years old 
Purchase from: The PublisherAmazon | B&N
Add it to Goodreads
Rating: 5 Owlets - We Loved It!
*I received a signed copy of this book at BEA, in exchange for my honest review

A message in a bottle holds the promise of surprise and wonder, as told in this enthralling picture book by Caldecott Medalist Erin E. Stead
The Uncorker of Ocean Bottles, who lives alone atop a hill, has a job of the utmost importance. It is his task to open any bottles found at sea and make sure that the messages are delivered. He loves his job, though he has always wished that, someday, one of the letters would be addressed to him. One day he opens a party invitation—but there’s no name attached. As he devotes himself to the mystery of the intended recipient, he ends up finding something even more special: the possibility of new friends.

Like finding a letter in a glass bottle floating in the sea, this book is a treasure. 

The Uncorker of Ocean Bottles tells a timeless, beautiful story, with a powerful lesson. I love picture books like this. It's one that when we finished reading it, we immediately read it again, and have read many times since then.

Michelle's storytelling, and Erin's beautiful illustrations create a touching story that will stay with you long after you read it. It is a gem that can be read over and over again, for generation to comes.

One of my favorite lines from the book is, ".... for a letter can hold the treasure of a clam-hugged pearl."

This is one picture book I highly recommend picking up!

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 ~