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New Releases: September 30, 2014

The Book with No Pictures by B.J. Novak [**]

The Book with No Pictures by B.J. Novak [**]


How much fun read-alouds are is explored in a new clever way with this picture book with no pictures. It’ll be interesting to hear what other people’s takes on this are and how it’ll go during story time!

The Spectacular Tale of Peter Rabbit by Emma Thompson, Illustrated by Eleanor Taylor [**]

The Spectacular Tale of Peter Rabbit by Emma Thompson, Illustrated by Eleanor Taylor [**]


Emma Thompson continues Beatrix Potter’s Peter Rabbit tales, perfectly capturing the sense and sensibility of the originals. I’ve got to say though I didn’t understand some of the phrases in the book which might confuse even much younger readers.

Read my other Peter Rabbit reviews here.

Lion, Lion by Miriam Busch, Illustrated by Larry Day [***]

Lion, Lion by Miriam Busch, Illustrated by Larry Day [***]


Fun picture book about one missing Lion, one hungry Lion, and a Boy. I love that one has to pay attention to the illustrations to fully appreciate the story. Lots of humor.

Flora and the Penguin by Molly Idle [**]

Flora and the Penguin by Molly Idle [**]


I wanted to like this since I was charmed by Flora and the Flamingo. It’s tough to follow up with something that was wildly appealing and fresh as her first book. I did enjoy the use of flaps and the fold-out pages!

This book just ate my dog! by Richard Byrne [***]

This book just ate my dog! by Richard Byrne [***]


I love how much fun people have been having with what makes a physical book so great! And, props to everyone designing a good book especially if has lots of little details to enjoy like this one. I don’t think I’ve ever read a book where the gutter of the book is a character!

 

What Are You Reading? (114) #IMWAYR – September 28, 2014

Thanks to Book Journey for starting this whole thing!

Thanks to Book Journey for starting this whole thing!

Thanks also to Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers for their focus on Children’s Literature of this meme!

Thanks also to Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers for their focus on Children’s Literature of this meme!

Please like The Chronicles Of A Children's Book Writer Facebook page!

Please like The Chronicles Of A Children’s Book Writer Facebook page!

If you’re on Twitter, don’t forget to use the hashtag #IMWAYR when sharing your link!

Multnomah County Library celebrated its 150th anniversary yesterday. I was there for the first hour as part of the Friends of the Library. We played trivia and asked riddles with the book and library-loving crowd. The library itself had guest speakers, free ice cream and donuts, story times in various languages, and so many more things going on they had to close off one of the streets! There was even a marching band.

Celebrating with a custom Biblio Blend and reading a library book!

Celebrating with a custom Biblio Blend and reading a library book!


This week, I posted:

-New Releases: September 23,2014- Read my reviews for:

-Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge Wednesday- Read my reviews for:

-Celebrate This Week- This week, I’m celebrating graphic novels. Read my reviews for:

Foxly's Feast by Owen Davey [**]

Foxly’s Feast by Owen Davey [**]


A cute wordless picture book about a hungry fox and the all the different animals he meets on his way to dinner. I enjoyed the twist at the end!


I just couldn’t get into these books but people do like them.

The Stick by Clay Rice [**]

The Stick by Clay Rice [**]


Reminded me a bit of Shel Silverstein’s The Giving Tree and the illustrations of Nikki McClure’s. A cute enough story about believing in one’s self.

The Story Starts Here! by Caroline Merola [*]

The Story Starts Here! by Caroline Merola [*]


Unfortunately, this was a rather forgetable book for me but I can see why people might find it fascinating. Kids will enjoy the unconventional way of reading this book!

Expect reviews for these books during Wednesday’s Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge post:

Rating Scale
*= It was OK
**= Liked it
***= Recommended
****= Highly Recommended
*****= Favorite

I’ll be going to San Francisco on Tuesday. I’ll be bringing Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan. I won’t be bringing my laptop with me so that should be interesting. I do have some scheduled posts.

I’m reading Michelle Knudsen’s Evil Librarian and Karen Armstrong’s Twelve Steps to a Compassionate Life.

Have a great reading week!

 

Celebrate This Week- September 27, 2014

Thanks to Ruth Ayers of Discover. Play. Build. for creating this meme!

Thanks to Ruth Ayers of Discover. Play. Build. for creating this meme!

This week I’m celebrating graphic novels.

We held our monthly Family Book Club and we chose 2 graphic novels to discuss. The reasons we chose graphic novels were two-fold. First, I wanted to let adults see how comics and graphic novels have come a long way from the standard superhero stories where the heroes were all good and the villains were all bad. This was definitely my presumption. Also, I wanted to tie it in with Banned Books Week with their focus on graphic novels this year.

We read the following books: (may contain spoilers)

Smile by Raina Telgemeier [***]

Smile by Raina Telgemeier [***]


It seems everyone had only good things to say about the book. With all the coming-of-age issues of friendship, appearances, and family relationships, there were definitely lots of relatable moments. I enjoyed the details in the illustrations. I also enjoyed the visual cues of time and place without having them be too obvious.

Amulet, Vol. 1: The Stonekeeper by Kazu Kibuishi [***]

Amulet, Vol. 1: The Stonekeeper by Kazu Kibuishi [***]


I’m not going to lie. When I got to the part where the dad died (right in the beginning), I was worried how others were going to react to this tragic event. I joked how I hoped they had watched enough Disney films to be used to this kind of thing. I really wasn’t sure what to expect but I ended up reading the whole series.

I was surprised I got addicted to the series. It helped that the characters became more fleshed out as we learned more about their back stories. I really liked how Navin’s role got bigger as the series progressed.

There were plenty of twists and turns to keep readers interested- not to mention the gorgeous illustrations. I can’t wait for the next installment and hope this will be a long-lasting series.

The Family Book Club brought in another group of people. They were very passionate readers. I enjoy how every time we meet we seem to end up writing down one another’s book suggestions. Other recommendations included Wonder, 13 Treasures, Watchmen, Fun Home, and Bone.

What are you celebrating this week?

 

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge Wednesday #38

The Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge is hosted by Alyson over at Kid Lit Frenzy.

The Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge is hosted by Alyson over at Kid Lit Frenzy.

This is a special elephant-themed post!

Elephants (Seedlings) by Kate Riggs [***]

Elephants (Seedlings) by Kate Riggs [***]


Seedlings is a fairly new nonfiction series for kids. Readers are introduced to different animals through photographs and simple text. Includes a glossary at the end.

Elephants Swim by Linda Capus Riley, Illustrated by Steve Jenkins [***]

Elephants Swim by Linda Capus Riley, Illustrated by Steve Jenkins [***]


Wonderful collage illustrations and simple sentences invite the youngest of readers to see how different animals behave in the water. Additional information can be found at the back of the book.

For fictional picture books about elephants, check out this post I did for work: A Parade of Pachyderm Picks!

 

New Releases: September 23, 2014

Counting on Letters: From A to Z and 1 to 26 by Mark Gonyea [**]

Counting on Letters: From A to Z and 1 to 26 by Mark Gonyea [**]


“ABC, It’s easy as 1,2,3…” Learning about letters and numbers are combined in this new board book with fun visuals.

The Farmer and the Clown by Marla Frazee [***]

The Farmer and the Clown by Marla Frazee [***]


This wordless picture book rightfully got a lot of positive re-publication buzz. I wished this was a film. The story of a boy clown and an old farmer having to live together is just too cute. I wasn’t particularly crazy about the ending but maybe it will inspire readers to write or draw their own!

 Here Is the Baby by Polly Kanevsky, Illustrated by Taeeun Yoo [***]

Here Is the Baby by Polly Kanevsky, Illustrated by Taeeun Yoo [***]


Adorable! Maybe I’m biased because the father and son spent some time at the library! I really loved the relationship between each family member.

 

Review: The Hobbit

The Hobbit
By J.R.R. Tolkien

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien [****]

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien [****]

“There’s always more about you than anyone expects!” These are Gandalf the wizard’s words to Bilbo Baggins, the Hobbit.

I’d been wanting to visit Middle Earth ever since Peter Jackson’s movies came out. Naturally, I wanted to read The Lord of the Rings but never got around to wanting to actually do so.

Despite not liking The Hobbit movies as much- I’m still excited for the third installment to come out- I decided to give this slimmer story a go and am so glad I did.

I can see how people over the years have grown to be extreme fanatics for Tolkien and the world he’s created. It’s awe-inspiringly mind-boggling how rich and detailed Middle Earth is- the creatures, the lands, the history…

The writing style is so inviting, like being welcomed to a storyteller’s lair, and watching each word come to life. The Gollum scenes were particularly engaging!

And, Bilbo Baggins- I would go as far to say is one of literature’s best characters for being a hero and managing to be true to himself. He, like the story, was much more than what I expected!

 

What Are You Reading? (113) #IMWAYR – September 21, 2014

Thanks to Book Journey for starting this whole thing!

Thanks to Book Journey for starting this whole thing!

Thanks also to Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers for their focus on Children’s Literature of this meme!

Thanks also to Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers for their focus on Children’s Literature of this meme!

Please like The Chronicles Of A Children's Book Writer Facebook page!

Please like The Chronicles Of A Children’s Book Writer Facebook page!

If you’re on Twitter, don’t forget to use the hashtag #IMWAYR when sharing your link!

I helped set up for the library’s Children’s Book Fair yesterday morning and got to see a wonderful performance to kick-off the event. It was a very interactive interpretation of Anansi and the Moss-Colored Rock. I was really impressed and I hoped it got the kids-and their parents- excited for some literary fun!

Tables were set up to do all kinds of crafts. A reading area promoted all kinds of books in different languages. Plus, there were a couple of caped crusaders going by the names of Bookman and Bookwoman! And,every child got to take home a free book!

This week, I posted:

-New Releases: September 16, 2014- Read my reviews for:

-Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge Wednesday- Read my reviews for:

-Celebrate This Week- I’m celebrating the happy moments that transpired during the past week.


A delightful new series (Mini Myths) that introduces the youngest of readers to mythology in fun relatable ways! Information about the actual myths are included. I love how playful the illustrations are. For example, in the Hercules book, the blocks depict the different tasks he undertook!

Julia's House for Lost Creatures by Ben Hatke [***]

Julia’s House for Lost Creatures by Ben Hatke [***]


Sweet story about a very independent resourceful girl who opens up her home to wayward creatures. Cute illustrations, very expressive. I really wanted more from this- perhaps it can crossover to a graphic novel?

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien [****]

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien [****]


Expect a review of this on Monday for Hobbit Day!

The Flat Rabbit by Barour Oskarsson [**]

The Flat Rabbit by Barour Oskarsson [**]


Delightfully dark picture book about a dog and a rat that stumble upon a “flat” rabbit. Think Weekend of Bernie’s for kids.

Nana in the City by Lauren Castillo [***]

Nana in the City by Lauren Castillo [***]


I decided to read this because we were having a Grandparents Day Celebration at work. This was a super touching story about a boy visiting his grandmother in the city. The illustrations are superb.

Guess What? by Mem Fox, Illustrated by Vivienne Goodman [**]

Guess What? by Mem Fox, Illustrated by Vivienne Goodman [**]


A retired elementary school teacher was so excited to find a copy of this book that she made me read it before buying it. A fun picture book that will have readers guessing along! This would be a hit during a Halloween themed story time. The illustrations were something else!

I read these two titles for our upcoming Family Book Club:


Expect reviews for them later this week!

Expect reviews for these books during my New Releases post on Tuesday:

Expect reviews for these books during Wednesday’s Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge post:

Rating Scale
*= It was OK
**= Liked it
***= Recommended
****= Highly Recommended
*****= Favorite

I’m still reading Michelle Knudsen’s Evil Librarian.

Have a great reading week!

 
 
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