Saturday, August 26, 2017

Stanley's Numbers and Stanley's Opposites by williambee: Book Review

Books received at no charge to facilitate review.

Stanley and Little Woo have their five party hats and two cakes ready for their picnic. They will need picnic rugs to sit on and balloons and party flags for decorations. As for the food, how much milk and cheese will they need for all of their friends and just how many friends will attend the picnic?

Bright colors and simple lines will grab the attention of fidgety toddlers but the real fun is the chance to count along with Stanley and Little Woo. When at last the friends are gathered for their picnic, the page explodes with lots of fun things to count. Not only do Stanley and Woo know how to put on a picnic, they also know how to score, one, two, three, four, five... yes five stars for their book.
5 hurrahs for Stanley and Woo.

Stanley and his friends don't stop with a picnic. First Stanley sleeps and then awakens. The fun starts when Little Woo gets in the water and Stanley stays out. Then it's off to the lake in canoes where Stanley sports a long canoe while Little Woo sticks with a short one. They even try their hands at building a snowman. Can you guess who will build the big one and who will build the small?

Once again, simple illustrations with vibrant colors attract attention while adorable characters make learning irresistible. A great companion to Stanley's Numbers. The sturdy board books will hold up to repeat reading requests from snuggly early readers.

Rating ★★★★★

Publishing Information

Publisher: Peachtree Publishing (Aug. 1, 2017)
ISBN: 978-1-56145-976-6 (Stanley's Numbers)
ISBN: 978-1-56145-977-3
Pages: 20
Ages: 2-6

Both books can be purchased at the following retailers:

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Station Fosaan by Dee Garretson Book Review

Book received at no charge to facilitate review.

Quinn Neen finds that the planet of Fosaan is a far cry than the tropical paradise the scientists and their families expected. The planet's dangerous terrain is in step with the horrible sulfur smell. Sixteen-year-old Quinn hardly notices as he is more interested in ignoring the rules and wandering off to study the planet's animals

As if the rule of staying inside the Earther's settlements wasn't hard enough to follow, Quinn's coincidental encounter with a Fosaanian girl named Mira in his family's kitchen stealing food leaves him breaking another rule of non-engagement with the people of Fosaan. Quinn encourages Mira to stay by giving her food and whatever else she needs for her sister. Before he can get to know her better the scientists, who are in orbit in their labs, are taken captive leaving the teens and the younger children alone on the planet with no communication to deal with the problem. To top it off, the Fosaanians accuse the Earthers of intentionally setting of the volcanoes that wrecked havoc on their planet nearly three hundred years ago.

Not only does Quinn have to convince Mira to trust him, he must convince the teens and children to work together to overpower the space raiders who want to destroy them. Plenty of action and great characters blend to create a solid young adult sci-fi novel. A talking parrot adds some humor to the dialogue that naturally flows well. Author Dee Garretson successfully uses description to build a world easy to visualize for teens and tweens.

Rating ★★★★☆

Publishing Information

Publisher: Month9Books (February 2017)
Series: Torch World Book One
ISBN 13- 978-1944816513
Pages 286
Ages: 12-16

This book can be purchased through the following retailer:

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Mrs. McBee Leaves Room 3 Picture Book Review

Book received at no charge to facilitate review.

Just in time for the end of a school year comes a sweet tale of teacher who is leaving her school and how it effects her students.

Oh no! Mrs. McBee has just told her class that she won't be returning to school after summer vacation and a "great sigh echoes down the halls." The children worry that Mrs. McBee will never get to hear them read or even see them again. But there is no time to fret about her leaving. They have room that needs to be cleaned before summer break. The lively mix of children get to work with strong-willed Jamaika taking charge while pointing out that one boy, William is not helping.

William has something else up his sleeve and puts together a stack of pictures of the pictures for everyone to remember their great year together. Mrs. McBee has one more surprise to share.

The richly colored illustrations aptly capture the mix of children and personalities with plenty of activity which any child would love to participate. The story captures both the excitement of the end of a school year as well as the twinge of sadness that happens when one has to leave a beloved teacher behind. A great way to help a child learn to say goodbye in those early school years.

Rating ★★★★☆

Publishing Information

Peachtree Publishers (April 2017)
Written by Gretchen Brandenburg McLelland
Illustrated by Grace Zong
ISBN: 978-1-56145-944-5
Ages: 3-7

This book can be purchased through the following retailer:

Monday, May 8, 2017

Flowers For Sarajevo Picture Book Review

Book received at no charge to facilitate review.

Working in the marketplace with his father, Drasko marvels at his father's ability to sniff out the best flowers. He is also amazed at how his father has no trouble giving them away to even the crankiest merchants. Together the father and son work side by side with people of different backgrounds - Serb and Croat, Muslim and Christian. When war breaks out, Drasko must run the flower stand by himself.     He rejoices at having the best seat in the square as he sits near the building where the orchestra practices.

Drasko witnesses an event that changes his life and those around him when a mortar hits the nearby bakery, killing 22 people. In the depths of despair, Drasko watches one lone man enter the square. The cellist from the symphony plays the same song every day for 22 days for each of those killed in the attack.

From the ashes of despair rise the song of hope. And from that song, hearts slowly heal to bring people together again.

A touching tribute to real life events told from eyes of the fictional Drasko. The illustrations aptly capture the change of moods during the somber time. The accompanying CD with Vedran Smailovic, the real life "Cellist of Sarajevo"performing the piece he played in the square in 1992 bring the story to life in a way that captures the soul. A sensitive and touching way to introduce the young reader to a heartbreaking historical event.

Publishing Information

Publisher: Peachtree Publishers (April 2017)
Written by John McCutcheon
Illustrated by Kristy Caldwell
ISBN: 978-1-56145-943-8
Ages: 7-10

This book can be purchased from the following: