Tuesday, March 26, 2024

One More Hug: Picture Book Review

Book received at no charge to facilitate review.

A scary tapping on the window elicits the call of "One more hug" from a boy to his Mama. A broken sword gets one more kiss, and waiting for the school bus gets one more tight squeeze. As the boy grows and learns to ride a bike, climb a wall, and run track, his mama is always there and ready for that " one more hug."

 The sentiment of a mother's deep love bursts from every page, reassuring not just children but grown-ups, too, that there will always be a bond. Young readers will relate to the illustrations of getting older. However, it's adults who will really connect and will want to read it as that one last bedtime story.

Rating ★☆

Publishing Information

Publisher: Aladdin (Nov. 12, 2019)
ISBN: 978-1-5344-29710
Pages: 40
Ages 4-8

This book can be purchased HERE

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Thursday, March 14, 2024

City Spies by James Ponti: Book Review

Book received at no charge to facilitate review.

Sara hacks into the foster care computer systems to report her foster parents for bad behavior. Instead, she winds up in court facing juvenile detention for illegal hacking. A British man impersonates her attorney to get her out of the mess. As it turns out, the man, better known as "Mother," needs her as part of a diverse team of orphan teens from all over the world in Scotland to work as spies for M16.

The team takes on new names after the cities they are from, so Sara becomes Brooklyn and joins Kat, Paris, Sydney, and Rio on a mission to become part of a team in the global environmental challenge. They need to make it to the top ten without actually winning the Stravros Challenge to buy time to uncover the identity of the Purple Thumb and keep him from attacking again.

Will the five spies combine their unique skills to save the entire intelligence community? Readers will be riveted by the spies' adventures, especially appreciating how each spy's skills come together to solve the mystery. While the contest focuses on environmental issues, those are glossed over in favor of what goes on inside M16. Overall, this is a solid pick for spy thriller seekers.

Rating ★★★

Publishing Information

Publisher: Aladdin (March 10, 2020)
ISBN: 9781534414914
Ages 8-12

Book can be purchased here.

Friday, March 27, 2020

I love you, Fred: Picture Book Review

Book received at no charge to facilitate review.
Fred knows a lot of words like "fetch," "sit," and "stay." But all of the time he hears, "Fred, Fred, Fred." He wants to learn to Fred so he can be a good boy.

As Fred romps and plays, he suddenly finds himself in a dangerous situation. When his owner rescues him and whispers, "Fred," a light goes off. He finally discovers what it means to be called Fred.

It's the illustrated big-eyes of Fred that capture the essence of the story more than the oft times overused rhymes. Chloe Inkpen's Illustrations aptly capture the personality of the dog who longs to Fred. A quick read aloud helps drive the importance of having a name and what that means. Overall, young readers will grow to love Fred too.

Rating ★★★★☆

Publishing Information

Publisher: Aladdin (Dec. 10, 2019)
ISBN: 9781534414754
Pages: 32
Ages: 4-6

This book can be purchased here

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Book Review: The Revenge of Magic: The Last Dragon by James RileyBo

Book received at no charge to facilitate review.
Six months after the attack in Washington D.C. that took his father from him, Fort Fitzgerald battles constant nightmares. In every dream, the Old One wants the location of the last dragon. Fort has never even seen a dragon and has no idea what it all means.

In the meantime, Gabriel, the new kid at the Oppenheimer school has been assigned Fort's roommate. Fort must keep Gabriel with him at all times. The weird thing is that this new kid,  has the same nightmares as Fort. He also holds secrets that Fort must uncover if he wants to save his father. He will need the help of his friends, Jia, Cyrus, and Rachel to keep the Old Ones from returning to earth.

A magical fantasy that will have readers wondering what twist will end with the thrilling resolution. An action packed story with an ending that will leave the reader excited for the next installment. 

Rating: ★★★★☆

Publishing Information

Publisher: Aladdin (Oct. 8, 2019)
ISBN: 9781534425729
Ages 8-12

This book can be purchased from the following retailer.