Thursday, February 26, 2015

KIDZKORNER Dr Seuss On the Loose

You know all the standards like Hop on Pop and Green Eggs and Ham.  You don't need me to recommend those to you.  Here are some Dr. Seuss books you may not have thought of.

What Pet Should I Get?

A brother and sister can't choose just one pet in this recently found book by the author.  It has been hidden away for all this time so grab it and read it!

 And To Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street

This book is about a child's imagination and the story that can come from it.  It is the first Dr. Seuss book I ever read as a kid and it made me a life long fan.

The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins

Bartholomew doesn't remove his hat as the king passes by and due to his disrespect, he is to be beheaded.  All he has to do is remove his hat which is easier said than done.

Horton Hatches The Egg

Maisie, that rotten mother of a bird, is off and running while Horton patiently waits for the little egg to hatch and he sits and he sits and he sits, until it finally pays off.

Take a look at these fine books and remind yourself of the talent of Dr. Seuss for entertaining children and until next week, keep on reading!

Monday, February 23, 2015

Broken Dreams by Nancy Pennick


Two girls from very different backgrounds meet at boarding school and make a pact to be blood sisters forever.  They love one another deeply and have a strong friendship until a boy gets in the way.  Luckily, they overcome  the problem and go on with their lives and friendship.  As time passes , it looks like Anna will live the life of a proper girl in the 1920’s.  She will get engaged and married and be a wife and mother.  Lucinda, on the other hand, craves adventure out West and wants to be a Harvey girl and wants Anna to come with her.
Circumstances change and the two girls do go out West together and are ready for adventure until a certain cowboy changes their destiny and ruins the friendship.

I love Anna and Lucinda.  I have read about them all through the  Waiting for Dusk series.  In this story, author Pennick paints a vibrant picture of both girls and shows a deep understanding of a friendship between two girls.
 Lucinda is a star!  She is funny and brave and suffers so much when her dear father passes away. We really get to see and understand the motivation behind Lucinda’s actions.
Anna is still the wonderful girl next door type who is loyal and loving.  She doesn’t want to hurt her dear friend but her feelings for  Daniel  are just too strong to ignore and he feels the same way.
I also loved getting to know Daniel and his perspective.  In the previous books, he was an ancillary character but here he is front and center.  I enjoyed reading about him and getting to know him better.
Now don’t think you can’t enjoy this book if you haven’t read the series.  That is totally not true.  The story stands on its own but once you read it, you will want to continue the series!

You can buy Broken Dreams here: Amazon

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Random Books

This week I didn't choose a theme.  I just found books I found appealing so here goes!

The Book With No Pictures by B.J. Novak

The words are the thing in this funny book written by one of the stars of The Office.  

Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell

Lift the flap to find the animals as a youngster looks for the perfect pet.

Wolfie, the Bunny by Ame Dyckman

Wolfie is not what he seems to be but only his adopted sister, Dot seems to notice.  She is worried he will eat her family but a twist in the story puts Wolfie in danger.  So what will Dot do?

I Don't Want to be a Frog by Dev Petty

A little frog and his dad have a discussion about why the little one has to remain a frog.  A good lesson in self acceptance.

Hope you enjoy these new favorites and until next week, keep on reading!

Monday, February 16, 2015

Things Are Not What They Seem by Anne Rothman-Hicks and Kenneth Hicks


Jenny and her brother, James become acquainted with a pigeon who suddenly spoke to Jenny and they become embroiled in trying to help him escape this curse which turned him from man to pigeon one hundred and eighty years ago.
They get into all sorts of trouble and accidentally drag their friends Sleepy and Kaytlyn into the whole mess which turns dangerous with the death of their homeless friend, Mr. Bags.
Arthur, the pigeon, needs to get a certain document to help him undo the spell he put himself under and he is convinced that Jenny and James are the ones to help him.  Jennny keeps having visions of Semprus, the man who created the spell that tell her to remember that things aren’t always what they seem and everything happens for a reason.
The quest ends in a frightening climax and the children are left to wonder if this really has ended.

The kids were written very well in this story.  They were smart and enterprising.  They were caught up in this magical mess and they used all their strengths to work their way through it.  Jenny was introduced as a good student and an intelligent girl so her understanding of Latin seemed believable.
James was no dummy either.  He spent most of the book convincing people that he was a ventriloquist when the talking pigeon got out of hand which frankly happened frequently.  Some of their interactions made me laugh out loud.
Their friends found their own hidden strengths too.  Sleepy found his inner courage and Kaytlyn found out she was more than a pretty rich girl.  I liked the dynamic between the four of them.I never thought I’d come to like a pigeon quite so much but I did indeed.  Arthur was funny and spirited and a little sneaky because who likes a perfect pigeon, right?
The authors spun quite a tale but at no time did they talk down to children or have their characters behave rudely or crudely.  They were pretty believable kids telling an outrageous story to the reader which they made seem possible.

I really liked this story and I think kids in the 8 to 12 year age group would find the story engaging and the characters likeable.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Kidz Korner In the City

I went downtown this weekend for the first time in a long time and it got me thinking about books about the city.  So here are some of my finds.

The Adventures of Beekle by Dan Santat

An imaginary friend who never gets picked goes on an adventure to the city and finally finds his match and gets his name.

Nana In the City by Lauren Castillo

A little boy find Grandma's city scary so she makes him a cape and helps him see things differently.

The Little House by Virginia Lee Burton

A trip through the life of a house as it gets squeezed out by the big city that grows up around it.  A tale of changes.

Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey

It's not easy raising a family in the big city.  Just ask Mr. and Mrs. Mallard!  The story of their little family is enchanting.
Also have to mention that each one of these books is an award winner!  So until next week, keep on reading!

Monday, February 9, 2015

Dust by Sarah Daltry


Alondra is a spoiled princess who pretty much has the life of leisure and celebrates life by drinking and dancing and flitting her time away.  All that changes in an instant when her kingdom is attacked with no warning and hundreds die in front of her eyes.  She is caught in a war that she doesn’t understand and doesn’t feel equipped to handle.
By her side is Seamus, the man to whom she is betrothed.  Before the attack, Alondra wanted nothing to do with Seamus and was only marrying him because of her duty to her parents and her country.  Now that the war has begun, Seamus has proven to be valiant and protective and invaluable to Alondra.
They have a young companion, Layla, who is a trained assassin as is Seamus.  Alondra learns to look past their training and really see the person each of them are.
Of course, there is someone evil involved who in better times, seemed to be the man of Alondra’s dreams but she finds out that he was just manipulating her to his own end.  Tevlin is not what he appears to be.
Along with a prophecy that they don’t quite understand, Alondra and Seamus realize that they need to work together to save their land.

Basically, I enjoyed the story of Dust.  Alondra was a spoiled princess who grew up in a very short, volatile time.  Seamus was trained to kill but he didn’t kill indiscriminately and he definitely had strong feelings for Alondra.  I enjoyed watching them grow closer.
Layla was a good addition to the team.  She was only fourteen years old so she got underestimated a lot which worked to the team’s advantage.
Tevlin was a creepy villain who tricked and manipulated and lied to get his way.  He had a team of support of magicians who interfered with the lives of the humans they supposedly cared about.

Even though I enjoyed the story, I thought the chapters going back and forth between then and now got confusing and the whole magic realm had me baffled at times.  I carried on though and got to the end of the story which had a satisfying conclusion.

Thursday, February 5, 2015


Earlier this week, I reviewed Frozen, a romantic anthology.  So the kids are getting their share of the chill today.

Lemonade in Winter by Emily Jenkins

A brother and sister have a lemonade stand in the middle of winter and learn lessons about money and the marketplace.

Mr. Popper's Penguins by  Richard Atwater

This classic tale is nothing like the movie.  Mr. Popper is a mild mannered family man who yearns for adventure and is gifted with his very own penguin.  Find out what happens when he gets this amazing gift and where it leads him.

Earmuffs for Everyone by Meghan McCarthy

This is the story of Chester Greenwood, the real inventor of earmuffs.  Chester didn't like having cold ears so he and his grandma make him a pair of ear warmers.  As a teen, he started his own company and sold the ear muffs and the rest is history.

Winter is the Warmest Season by Laura Stringer

This book follows a family through a winter day and features warmth from grilled cheese sandwiches to flannel pj's.

So cuddle up and stay warm and until next week, keep on reading.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Frozen Anthology by many authors

  Rated 4 STARS

I don’t usually review short story books but this one I made an exception for because some of these authors are friends of mine whose writing I love.  That being said, I’m not going to tell you about each story.  I’ll just give you a general idea of what Frozen is all about.
You won’t find Elsa or Anna but if you like romance, it is in there plenty!!  There is the sweet romance of young adults and the steamy romance of two lovers stranded in the cold.  There are feisty gals and gloriously handsome men.
Since every story takes place somewhere cold, I highly suggest you grab a cup of your favorite hot beverage and sit by the fire and enjoy these stories one at a time or all of them at one sitting.
Not every one of the stories was to my liking but that is just personal preference.  I like that the book has something for everyone.  If one of the stories is not for you, just skip it and go on to the next.  I don’t think it will happen very often but that is one of the perks of a group of stories.
I wrapped myself up in an afghan, put my feet up for several days in a row and read a few each time and found I couldn’t wait to get back for the next one!

So if romance is your thing, if winter doesn’t leave you cold or if you’re just looking for a good read, pick up Frozen.  I think you’ll enjoy it.

You can buy it here: