Moms and Kids Sharing Love

Love by Matt de la Pena | a review and activity for Moms & Kids to share I have teenagers, and sometimes they think that picture books are beneath them. But the moment I opened the package and unwrapped Love by Matt de la Pena, my teenagers told me that we were keeping this book. This book is so gentle and kind and absolutely fantastic. The story is told from the perspective of a child as they see the beauty of the world around them, protected by adults from bits they cannot understand yet. Matt de la Pena reaches down into your heart with onlyRead More →

Jump Into Adventure With Addison Cooke

Addison Cooke and the Tomb of the Khan by Jonathan W. Stokes I had not heard of Addison Cooke before I began to read this book, but the story is a fun and exciting adventure that any child will love! There are not many books these days that capture the imaginations of boys, but this book certainly does. The story begins as Addison Cooke, a cocky boy with a fantastic ability to talk his way out of nearly any situation, talks his way out of detention and heads home for summer vacation. He meets up with his little sister, Molly, and two friends, Raj andRead More →

HERE WE ARE: A Review & A How-To Using A Picture Book To Learn Together Who Is This Book Good For? This is a fantastically-sweet story for young children. The story by itself could be read to babies easily. The author’s gentle love for his own baby shines through like a beacon in the text. If you have preschool-aged children or even kids as old as 7 or 8, this is a wonderful teaching book to give young hearts an appreciation for the beauty and complexity of the world we live in.   “This is a wonderful sweet story and I am keeping this bookRead More →

Digging for Trouble – The Devlin Quick Mysteries {a review for Penguin Random House} Devlin Quick is that girl we all wish we could be like: spunky, smart, and insatiably curious. She is always up for a challenge and in this third book in the Devlin Quick Mysteries series, we find Devlin on a paleontology dig in Montana. When her friend Katie finds a rare dinosaur on the dig, the two girls end up in the middle of an adventure that leads them back to Manhattan and eventually to discover the identity of a thief. Ever wonder what it would be like to be aRead More →

The War I Finally Won

The War I Finally Won by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley {a review for Penguin Random House} Ada is a young girl who starts life in horrible circumstances with an abusive mother and caring for her little brother. She is lame, due to a club foot, but at the start of this second volume in the series, Ada gets that operation which will fix her foot and allow her to walk. The kindly woman, Susan, who has taken Ada and her brother in as part of the government plan to evacuate children from London during the bombing raids of World War II, has her work cut outRead More →

Finding My Way to Zendoodle Calm

A Review of Zendoodle Calm By Felicity French and Lauren Farnsworth Zendoodle Calm is a fantastic new kind of coloring book for adults. You color designs with doodles, not solid color. This makes coloring more of a meditative activity, and thus the name, Zendoodle Calm. Coloring with doodles is a lot like the pattern shading that Albrecht Durer made commonplace in his famous rhinoceros woodcutting in 1515. I actually tried an art project with my kids once to recreate their own versions of that Durer rhinoceros, but it was a disaster. The kids were too young for the concentration required to make the detailed patternsRead More →

Never Say Die by Anthony Horowitz (a Review for Penguin Random House) This action-packed story for older teens starts with a James Bond-style theft on the coast of England and a seemly-unrelated mystery. Alex Rider, the hero of a series of books from Anthony Horowitz, is recovering from the death of his nanny-guardian and adjusting to his new life in the family of a journalist friend. After four weeks in California with his new family, the orphaned teen gets an email which simply says, “ALEXX I’M AL,” and the adventure to discover if his nanny is still alive begins. The story is an exciting one.Read More →

Saving Marty

Saving Marty appears on the surface to be the story of a boy and his pig. There are so many of these stories in the world, but this is not really the tale of a pig. Yes, there is a pig in the story, but this story is about the boy. Summary of the Story Renzo lives with his mom and his Double (grandpa) on the family farm. His mother tries to keep everyone fed by raising pigs and puppies and one particular pig ends up joining the puppy pack, bonds with 11 year old Renzo, and never looks back. This fantastic pig is lovedRead More →