Posts from the ‘children’s books’ Category

A LIFELONG DILEMMA

Florence Nightingale: A Life Inspired

Written by Lynn M. Hamilton

This is an interesting biography that focuses on Nightingale’s personal struggles as well as her pioneering work in nursing. Florence was born into a wealthy English Victorian family. Throughout her life, Florence was torn between what was expected of woman born to a well-to-do nineteenth-century family and her strong ties to the Unitarian Church, which demanded community service to those less fortunate in society. Her family’s wide travels in Europe allowed her to meet powerful thinkers like Victor Hugo and Alexis De Tocqueville. While her family urged her to marry, Florence resisted. By the time she was thirty-two, Florence had asserted her independence by assuming a role as superintendent of a nursing home even though she received no salary. Her service in the Crimean War revealed the serious flaws in hospital care. More soldiers died from their illnesses than in battle. Nightingale demanded that abuses like poor lighting, sanitation, and ventilation be addressed. She urged proper training for nursing students and hospital sanitation, reflecting the germ theory of illness.

I was not aware of Florence’s work in India and the depth of personal struggle she experienced between her convictions and the demands of her family. The fact that she refused to sit on her laurels and accept praise for her accomplishments, but rather be self-critical about her own mistakes and failings impressed me. Her influence on modern healthcare practices cannot be underestimated.

I recommend the book for anyone interested in learning more about the evolution of nursing and modern healthcare or to learn about the life of a remarkable, Victorian woman willing to stand up and be counted. Recommended for ages ten and older.

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TROUBLE OR TREASURE?

The Bridge of the Golden Wood: A Parable on How to Earn a Living

Written by Karl Beckstrand

Illustrated by Yaniv Cahoua

This short picture book is an interesting tale about a young boy who is given a choice by an old woman. The reader is introduced to a young Asian boy who likes to make things and always carries tools with him. One day he is walking along a stream near his home when he comes across an old woman sitting on its banks. She appears to be staring at a pile of branches piled against the rocks in the stream. She informs the boy that these objects are both “trouble and treasure.” They are trouble for the fish that cannot swim past them, but she will offer him a treasure if the boy will help her. Immediately the clever boy comes up with an ingenious solution to solve the problem. Then the old woman disappears, but her promise is delivered in an unexpected way.

Beautiful watercolor illustrations enhance the uplifting message and serene mood of the book. Beckstrand includes interesting ideas and activities to enhance the book’s value. My main criticism of the book lies in the layout of the text, which is so small that it is difficult to read. I would recommend the story, especially as a read-aloud for elementary grade children, though the message is certainly pertinent to any age group.

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SCOUT’S HONOR

The Hairy Fairy: The Hairy Fairy Tales, Book 1

Written by Mark Watson

On Saturday morning, Jack wakes up to discover a hairy fairy sitting on his head. Jack is incredulous. The fairy informs Jack that his boss is angry with him for messing with her cat, so she banished him to spend a day sitting on someone’s head. He tells Jack that no one else can see him, but that doesn’t mean they can’t cause mischief and have some fun. Poor Jack is determined to carry out his previous plan to spend the day at the Scout Jamboree. When he goes to the market, the fairy causes the vegetables to grow. They soon take over the town and cause all manner of havoc. Now Jack and his nemesis are trapped. Will they be able to escape? What will happen to the town now involved with the military in a battle against the vegetables, likened to World War III?

This book of fewer than fifty pages might best be described as a beginning chapter book. The clever rhymes are filled with humor and challenging vocabulary. Illustrations are done in graphic novel style. Aimed at a six to twelve age audience, I think that advanced beginning readers and middle school students will love the quirky plot and offbeat humorous rhymes. Fans of fantasy, sci-fi, and humor probably will enjoy it.

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Baby Chomper’s Bath Time Blog Tour and Giveaway

DOWN AND DIRTY!

Baby Chomper’s BATH TIME

Written by Jeff Minich

Illustrated by Renam Garcia

I am delighted to read and review another charming book in the nuggies book series. Chomper is an adorable pup, who has a penchant for getting dirty just like his young readers. After all when you spend your days playing in garbage cans, rolling in the mud, and chasing skunks, a price will have to be paid. That price is being a candidate for a good scrubbing in the bathtub. Chomper does all he can to resist his fate, but his owner tracks him down.

Once in the tub, Chomper discovers a world of imagination. He can imagine adventures like swimming with the fishes, surfing, and sailing across the seas in a pirate ship. Chomper discovers feeling fresh as a daisy after a bath might not be so bad after all.

The text consists of simple sentences and the illustrations are simple, bold and creative. I love the image of Chomper’s owner giving him a bath dressed in a suit. Parents of reluctant toddlers and preschoolers who hate bath time will grab this book as an effective way to change young reader’s behavior. Recommended especially for children ages two through five. The short tale is perfect for bedtime story or nursery classroom read aloud

I received an advance review copy from the publisher and decided to voluntarily read and read with my honest opinions for no compensation.

ABOUT THE BOOK

Baby Chomper’s Bath Time

Written by Jeff Minich

Publisher’s Synopsis: Baby Chomper’s Bath Time is a lovable tale about a little puppy who learns to have fun doing his least favorite thing— taking a bath! One day, baby Chomper escapes from home and gets muddy and stinky beyond belief. He rolls in the mud, takes a dive in the trash, and even gets sprayed by a very stinky skunk. After returning home, he finds that it’s his least favorite time of all: BATH TIME! With nowhere else to go, Chomper realizes that bath time can be one of the most fun times of all! He imagines himself diving into the deep blue sea, being the captain of his own ship, and surfing to a faraway shore. Baby Chomper’s Bath Time is a playful story that encourages children to see the bright side of every situation.

Ages 2-5 | Publisher: Nuggies Inc | November 7, 2017 | ISBN-13: 978-0999298404

Available on Amazon: http://amzn.to/2xpzBlx

Available on Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/baby-chompers-bath-time-minich-jeff/1127135121

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jeff Minich is the author of the Nuggies illustrated children’s book series. Created in collaboration with illustrator Renan Garcia, the series includes Daddy Forgot My Dinner (Vol. 1); All the Other Nuggies (Vol. 2); A Very Scary Pumpkin (Vol. 3); Oui Oui, Gigi! (Vol. 4); and If I Could Climb Trees (Vol. 5). You can learn more about the Nuggies book series by visiting: GetNuggies.com

 OFFICIAL LINKS

GIVEAWAY
 Enter to win an autographed copy of Baby Chomper’s Bath Time, by Jeff Minich—plus a Dyson Supersonic hairdryer!

One (1) grand prize winner receives:

  • A Dyson Supersonic hairdryer

  • A complete autographed set of the Nuggies series
    • A copy of If I Could Climb Trees: Nuggies: Vol. 5, signed by Jeff Minich
    • A copy of Oui Oui Gigi: Nuggies: Vol. 4, signed by Jeff Minich
    • A copy of  A Very Scary Pumpkin: Nuggies: Vol. 3, signed by Jeff Minich
    • A copy of  All the Other Nuggies: Nuggies: Vol. 2, signed by Jeff Minich
    • A copy of  Daddy Forgot My Dinner: Nuggies: Vol. 1, signed by Jeff Minich
    • A copy of Baby Chomper’s Bath Time, signed by Jeff Minich

Value: $518+

Two (2) winners receive:

  • A copy of Baby Chomper’s Bath Time, signed by Jeff Minich

Value: $19.95

Giveaway begins September 26, 2017, at 12:01 A.M. MT and ends October 26, 2017, at 11:59 P.M. MT.

Giveaway open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older.

Prizes provided by Jeff Minich

 

SCAREDY CAT

A VERY SCARY PUMPKIN

Written by Jeff Minich

Illustrated by Renee Garcia

Book Three in the Nuggies series featuring Chomper and Coco, who are dog and cat friends. Moving day is here, but when the family arrives at their new home, it turns out to be an old, scary hours that is haunted by a pumpkin. The pumpkin does not want the new owners, so she tries mightily to scare them all away. She even locks daddy out of the house, while she imprisons Coco and Chomper.

One night Chomper and Coco discover the true identity of the ghost and realize she is not scary, but really very lonely. How will the three resolve their issues? Will the family be able to settle peacefully in their new home?

This picture book is well laid out and attractively illustrated. I would caution reading it as a bedtime story for children who have nightmares, but it makes a good Halloween read aloud or book for classroom discussion. Especially recommended for children in the three to six age bracket.

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HALLOWEEN ON HIGH

Halloween Snowman Paul

Written by Yossi Lapid

Illustrated by Joanna Fasen

I was delighted to see a new release in the Snowman Paul series because I have previously enjoyed this author’s funny character and memorable illustrations.

This new book features a tree house on Halloween night. As visitors come upon the site, they encounter a warning sign not to come near the tree house. Who can refuse a dare on Halloween night? As the reader continues his journey three more warnings are posted. Visitors are warned of many types of danger. Trespassers might encounter space aliens, witches or ghosts.

I won’t give away where Paul fits into this picture, but readers will be urged to tell spooky stories and sing scary songs. Trick or treaters will not be disappointed.

This multicultural book is replete with large, soft and expressive watercolor illustrations that are not too scary for the youngest readers. Recommended especially for children in the three to eight year old range. Warning…adults will enjoy the book even more than the kids. Well done!

I was given a copy of this book by the author and voluntarily decided to review with my honest opinions for no compensation.

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OUT OF REACH

Sean Wants to Be a Messi

Written by Tanya Preminger

Illustrated by Elettra Cudignotti

Sean is a second grader who is obsessed with soccer, especially one player named Leo Messi. He seems uninterested in finishing his homework or paying attention in school. He is excited to join soccer club to perfect his skill, but upon arrival, he refuses to play. His mother is upset with him. Both parents encourage Sean to overcome his fears of inadequacy and start developing his game skills. One day, a sixth grader bullies him and throws Sean’s soccer ball over the fence. One day a player is injured and an opportunity arises for Sean to assist. I am not sure I approve of Sean’s mother’s response, but Sean learns a valuable lesson about himself and the game.

Recommended as a beginning chapter book for new or reluctant readers. The book has a few colorful illustrations to keep the story flowing. Soccer fans will particularly enjoy reading it.

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