Archive for May, 2016

FALLING THROUGH TIME

The Pendant Saga: Book One: Picaroons and Pembertons

Written by J.A. Knighted

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Well-written fast paced adventure, science fiction, fantasy, time-travel tale for middle school and young adult readers. Penny, Jade and Phillip Pemberton have been dropped off to spend the summer with their grandfather in the Colorado desert while their parents are off traveling.

The precocious trio forget to close the gate and grandpa’s dog, Old Scout escapes. They desperately search for him, Their grandfather punishes the children by demanding they go out and move a pile of old junk back to the house so that he can sell it. On their way out, Philip finds a skull sticking out of the sand and later a mysterious gold pendant. Soon the three children fall into what appears to be a well, but instead find out they have fallen into an ocean from another time and dimension.

Pirates, bullies, strange lands, sea monsters and kidnappers await the three children as they struggle to find a way back to their own time and dimension. Along the way, they will learn about themselves, their family, and a world that is not always as it appears.

These characters are compelling and well developed. Book One of the series is at once an adventure, fantasy, coming of age and commentary on issues like bullying and family relationships. Look forward to the next adventure. Recommended for readers ages ten and older.

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THE INSIDE SCOOP – Dragons Are Real Blog Tour

Dragons Are Real

Written by Valarie Budayr

Illustrated by Michael Welply

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So you thought dragons are fire-breathing monsters who trample the ground beneath their feet, instill fear or rescue damsels in distress. Well, the author tells young readers that is incorrect. Real dragons read books, memorize poems, solve riddles, laugh when tickled and dance the cha- cha. They are masters of disguise and may be lurking in the most unexpected places. Dragons love sweets; beware of losing that ice cream cone that you might be holding in your hand.

Welply does a masterful job of illustrating these charming scenes with large images in soft pastel colors which bring the text to life. This picture book will especially appeal to young readers in the four to seven age group. Perfect choice for a read aloud or bedtime story. It’s hard not to fall in love with the antics and images of the dragons portrayed on these pages.

 

BeachBoundBooks is pleased to be coordinating a Blog Tour for the charming children’s book written by Valarie Budayr and illustrated by Michael Welply, Dragons are Real. The tour will run from May 9 – May 30, 2016

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About the Book

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Title: Dragons are Real | Author: Valarie Budayr | Illustrator: Michael Welply | Publisher: Audrey Press | Publication Date: May 5, 2016 | Genre: Children’s Picture Book | Number of Pages: 32
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Book Description:

What if I told you that all of the fairy tales, myths and legends that have been told about dragons over the years are WRONG? What if I told you that Dragons are indeed REAL and that they are different than you’ve ever imagined? Did you know that Dragons are the master of disguises? Did you know that they love sugar and sweets (at unacceptable levels) and will do anything for treats? Award winning author Valarie Budayr brings us this fairly true story based on her childhood friendship with a REAL live Dragon.

Take a look inside the book…
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About the Author: Valarie Budayr

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Award Winning and Best-selling author, Valarie Budayr inspires children and adults alike to experience their books through play, discovery, and adventure via engaging extension activities on her popular website, www.jumpintoabook.com.

Valarie is co-founder of Multi-cultural Children’s Book Day , #ReadYourWorld, a celebration of diverse and cultural kid-lit shared with over 98 million people on January 27th. Her foundation puts hundreds of books into the hands of children in rural and intercity areas. www.multiculturalchildrensbookday.com

Valarie’s other best-selling and award winning titles are: The Fox Diaries: The Year the Foxes Came to our Garden, The Ultimate Guide to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and A Year in the Secret Garden. 

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About the Illustrator: Michael Welply

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Michael Welply was born in London in 1948. The family moved to Winnipeg, Canada, in 1950. He studied art in Winnipeg and then in Paris, but his idea of living from the sales of his paintings is somewhat compromised by the lack of buyers. He started his career as an illustrator in 1977 in London. In 1981 he returned to live in France with his American wife and their two children. Since then he has worked for publishers in both Europe and North America. To date he has illustrated over 80 books and more than 100 covers, in a wide range of subjects extending from detailed non-fiction to juvenile and adult fiction in the realms of fantasy, mythology, science fiction and fairy tales.

Blog Tour Giveaway

Prize: One winner will receive a $100 Amazon gift card or $100 PayPal cash prize, winner’s choice

Giveaway ends: May 30, 11:59 pm, 2016

Open to: Internationally

How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.

Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author, Valarie Budayr and is hosted and managed by Stacie from BeachBoundBooks. If you have any additional questions feel free to send an email to stacie@BeachBoundBooks.com.

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HIPPIE HAPPENING

What Was Woodstock?

Written by Joan Holub

Illustrated by Gregory Copeland

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This book is part of the Who, What, Where series of books written largely for the beginning reader and pre-teen audience. Woodstock is one of the most famous events in the 1960’s, one of the most tumultuous decades in American history. Not only does this book portray in words, drawings and photos, the Woodstock music festival, but it furnishes a birds-eye view of the history of the 1960’s. Well-written concise profiles of the Vietnam War, political and social change, and sixties slang are included. There are time lines of the sixties for the United States as well as one of events happening around the globe. An age appropriate bibliography for additional reading on these topics is also included.

Music promoter, Michael Lang conceived the concert idea. Desiring to open up a recording studio for young artists in Woodstock, about 120 miles north of New York City, he convinced Artie Kornfield of Capitol Records that this was a good idea. While playing a game of pool one night, they decided to raise money for their project by having a giant outdoor music concert. They needed a large space, security, lighting, outdoor toilets, food, water, a stage and lots of music bands. Problem after problem arose. Their plans fell through and the location was changed three times. Eventually, they contracted with a local farmer, Max Yasgur in Bethel, NY. They planned for 50,000 people, but 500,000 came. The roads were so clogged that people had to walk ten miles from their cars, and bands had to be flown in by helicopter. A thunderstorm threatened to destroy it, but the three day event in August, 1969 became a message of peace and hope for people young and old. Well-known artists like Jimi Hendrix and Joan Baez played as well as then unknowns like Santana and Credence Clearwater Revival. The organizers made no money. Despite its success, organizers wound up letting everyone in free because they could not manage to collect tickets.

Young pre teen readers will love this book. History, music and popular culture are woven together into a mesmerizing look at sixties people, places and things. Readers absorb a great deal of knowledge without even realizing it. Highly recommended for students, teachers, parents and all those baby boomers who lived through or have heard about Woodstock.

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#KIDS READ CLASSICS – FOND MEMORIES OF DAYS GONE BY….The Days of Holly Hobbie: A Cricket Book

The Days of Holly Hobbie: A Cricket Book

Illustrated by Holly Hobbie

Published by Platt & Munk, NY 1977

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I picked this book up for my young daughter at a tag sale near my home. My daughter and I loved the pastel watercolors, the calico clothing and the over-sized bonnet this character wore. I had toyed with the idea of naming my daughter Holly as she was due near Christmas, but changed my mind at the last minute. Maybe that is why I was originally drawn to it.

Holly traces a typical day in her simple life. Her activities might include picking flowers, watering plants, caring for pets, stomping in rain puddles, exploring the attic, baking muffins, listening to the birds or swinging beneath the trees. Echoes of a childhood past that moved much more slowly. This 9 X 12 hardcover book is still available on amazon. Mine is well worn and  bears the inscription of its original purchaser.

Who is Holly Hobbie? She is a real person. Holly Hobbie was born Holly Ulinskas in 1944. Holly is an American writer and illustrator who named the fictional character based on herself. She is also the author of the Toot and Puddle book series. In the late 1960’s this Holly Hobbie character wearing a rag dress and dressed in her huge bonnet, usually accompanied by her pet cat, sold to American Greetings.

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The artist, Bob Childers, insisted that she become a doll. He hand stitched a prototype and gave it to Hallmark’s Rex Connors. Conners sold the idea to Knickerbocker Toys who licensed the character in 1974; the character came to life and delighted many little girls like my daughter, Heather. Later in 2006, Hollie Hobbie and Friends became a spin-off and regained popularity. Music, lyrics and a TV movie were produced as a result. Holly remains a charming and nostalgic reminder of a favorite vintage book that I enjoyed reading with my daughter.

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TRAVELING RIGHT

98 Best Travel Tips: A Guide For Travel Junkies on a Budget with KIDS

Written by Chris A. Baird

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I have done quite a bit of traveling in my lifetime, but I must say this book is the best guide that I have seen. It covers any conceivable topic related to travel from soup to nuts.

Baird begins by explaining the broad definition of travel; it does not necessarily mean a long, time-consuming journey. He gives us concrete reasons for travel like being able to connect better to others, discover ourselves and expanding our children’s horizons. Baird lists many of the excuses people use not to travel like not having enough time, money or physical resources.

The heart of the book gets down to the nitty-gritty of where you start, how to budget, and plan for your safety. His list of reminders like careful research, passport and insurance information, and booking don’t leave anything out. Baird lays out what you need to know about packing and planning, when and what to do at the airport, and invaluable tips on planning, packing and involving your children in the trip. The author does not forget about preparing for the trip home while still on vacation, and how you should already be thinking about your next family adventure.

This book is a good choice for anyone who is hesitant about traveling with the family, as well as those who are seasoned travelers. Parents can share the book with older children. I can’ think of anything that has been left out. Strongly recommend reading this one before you plan your next vacation.

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MAKING THE BEST OF IT

Pure Trash

Written by Bette A. Stevens

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By way of disclosure let me say that I read this prequel after I read the full length novel. Some reviewers have indicated they felt the ending abrupt or incomplete, but I loved this short introduction to the characters of Shawn and Willie just as much as I did the full length novel.

Nine year old Shawn and his six year old brother Willie live in a run down house without plumbing along with their hard working mother and alcoholic father. The setting is 1955 when life for two poor boys was hard, but everyday life was simple. On a Saturday morning the two brothers ride their bikes, play with slingshots, and collect bottles for change they can cash in for candy and soda at the local general store. But the well to do town citizens look down upon them, and they are bullied for being “dirty trash” by children and adults alike. Anyone familiar with the baby boomer generation will enjoy and empathize with these lovable characters. Recommended especially for middle grade students.

Fun read for a lazy afternoon. Don’t miss the full novel, Dog Bone Soup.

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THE POWER OF SUGGESTION

The Hungriest Dragon A Tale of Food and Friendship

Written by Kimberly Segraves

Illustrated by Peipei Liu

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Lyric had just moved to a new neighborhood. He goes to the playground daily, but on one is ever there and he has been unable to find a friend. One day Lyric hears a growling noise. A red dragon steps out of the bushes. Frightened, Lyric falls from the slide ladder and finds the dragon standing over him. They strike up a conversation. Lyric invites the dragon to his house, but Dragon-Fire is most interested in meeting his pet cat. When they get to the house, Lyric finds his mother napping and his new friend doing his best to eat his cat, Dolly. Lyric tries to distract the dragon from her objective by enticing her with other types of foods, but nothing seems to work. Then Lyric’s mother wakes up and together they hatch a plot.

This story has a page count under seventy and bright colorful illustrations. It appears to be targeted to elementary school children. A few points in the plot concern me. Lyric goes alone to the playground day after day, his mother is home napping while he is away and he does not wake her when he gets home. It seems strange that there are never any children at the playground; no mention is made of school or other community sites where children gather. No doubt this book might appeal to children who like dragons or those who feel lonely after a new move, but I think the narrative might upset some children to see a pet cat chased and tied up. The idea of a lonely boy finding a friend is a good starting point, but the tale veers off in strange directions. I would recommend that parents and teachers read first and be prepared to answer their children’s questions.

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