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Showing posts from 2021

PICTURE BOOK FICTION REVIEW : Mucky Truck by Ammi-Joan Paquette

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MUCKY TRUCK by Ammi-Joan Paquette, illustrations by Elisa Ferro Henry Holt & Co., 2021 ISBN: 978-1-250-26380-3 Source: Nicole Banholtzer PR Ages 4-8 All opinions expressed are solely my own. ABOUT THE BOOK When a little truck gets stuck in the mud, his other truck friends come to his aid. At the end of the day, it's fire engine to the rescue! And the five friends celebrate by playing together in the slippy, sloshy, oh-so-mucky mud. With bouncy verse and visual drama, this read-aloud picture book will be a hit with preschoolers and fans of  Little Blue Truck .   REVIEW Mucky Truck presents an entertaining story about a truck that dives into a "sticky, tacky" mud puddle and gets stuck.  His truck friends, Crane, Digger, and Forklift, attempt to help him get free but get stuck themselves.  What they need, it turns out, is water, and a lot of it.  Which truck friend could provide such help?  And what will the vehicles do if they manage to get free?  This book will be a h

MIDDLE GRADE ACTIVITY NONFICTION : Fetch! A How to Speak Dog Training Guide and Pounce! A How to Speak Cat Training Guide

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FETCH! A How To Speak Dog Training Guide by Aubre Andrus & Gary Weitzman, D.V.M. National Geographic Kids, 2020 ISBN: 978-1-4263-3848-9 Source: Media Masters Publicity Ages 9 and up All opinions expressed are solely my own.   ABOUT THE BOOK   From the experts who brought you How to Speak Dog, learn tips and tricks to help train your best friend.Whether teaching a puppy the basics--such as "sit," "stand," and "stay"-- correcting behavioral problems, or training your pooch to perform more advanced tricks, this comprehensive guide will take you through all the steps to have your canine answering your call in no time. With the help of veterinarian Dr. Gary Weitzman, kids will bond with their pups through structured lessons that showcase easy-to-follow instructions and commands. Additional content introduces readers to Hollywood hounds, dogs on the job, and famous canines through history. This "paws-on" guide is p

EARLY CHAPTER BOOK REVIEWS : Dear Beast & Dear Beast: The Pet Parade by Dori Hillestad Butler

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  DEAR BEAST by Dori Hillestad Butler, illustrated by Kevan Atteberry Holiday House, 2020 ISBN: 978--8234-4843-2 Source: purchased Ages 6-9 All opinions expressed are solely my own. ABOUT THE BOOK A jealous cat really, really , REALLY wants to drive away his young owner's new dog in this playful illustrated chapter book from a two-time Geisel Honor winner. Simon has taken care of his owner, Andy, for many years. He's a good cat. Clean, responsible, and loyal. What more could a boy want? Even when Andy's dad moves out, Simon is certain that Andy doesn't need another pet. So why would Andy's dad adopt a DOG?! To make matters worse, the animal is a rude, rowdy troublemaker. Simon's job is clear: the beast has got to go. He decides to write him a letter. Strongly worded, of course. But when the dog's response sets off an unexpected correspondence, Simon realizes the beast may be here to stay. Can he make room for another

MIDDLE GRADE BROWSEABLE NONFICTION : Beginner's United States Atlas 3rd Edition & Beginner's World Atlas 4th Edition by National Geographic Kids

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  BEGINNER'S UNITED STATES ATLAS, Third Edition National Geographic Kids, 2020 ISBN: 978-1-4263-3825-0 Source : Media Masters Publicity for review Ages 9-12 All opinions expressed are solely my own.   ABOUT THE BOOK The updated third edition of this popular atlas introduces young readers to the wonders of all of America's states and territories, with maps, fun facts, geographical features, and more.This fun, easy-to-use atlas takes kids on a journey around the U.S. to showcase what's unique about each state and territory. Every profile starts with a colorful map and a lively essay and includes capital cities; population; important land and water features; state birds, flowers, and flags; and more. It's all packaged in a bigger format, with a refreshed design, and bold, bright photos and illustrations. National Geographic--known for its authoritative data, expert cartography, and beautiful photography--is the number one provider of atlases for people of all ag

MIDDLE GRADE NOVEL-IN-VERSE: The One Thing You'd Save by Linda Sue Park

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  THE ONE THING YOU'D SAVE by Linda Sue Park, illustrated by Robert Sae-Heng Clarion Books, 2021 ISBN: 978-1-328-51513-1 Source: purchased Ages 9-12 All opinions expressed are solely my own.   ABOUT THE BOOK   If your house were on fire, what one thing would you save? Newbery Medalist Linda Sue Park explores different answers to this provocative question in linked poems that capture the diverse voices of a middle school class. Illustrated with black-and-white art. When a teacher asks her class what one thing they would save in an emergency, some students know the answer right away. Others come to their decisions more slowly. And some change their minds when they hear their classmates’ responses. A lively dialog ignites as the students discover unexpected facets of one another—and themselves. With her ear for authentic dialog and knowledge of tweens’ priorities and emotions, Linda Sue Park brings the varied voices of an inclusive classroom to life through carefully honed,

PICTURE BOOK BIOGRAPHY REVIEWS : Jump at the Sun by Alicia D. Williams & Try It! by Mara Rockliff

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JUMP AT THE SUN The True Life Tale of Unstoppable Storycatcher Zora Neale Hurston by Alicia D. Williams, illustrated by Jacqueline Alcantara Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2021 ISBN: 978-1-5344-1913-1 Source: publisher for review Grades 2-5 All opinions expressed are solely my own. ABOUT THE BOOK A picture book that shines the light on Zora Neale Hurston, the writer and storycatcher extraordinaire who changed the face of American literature. Zora was a girl who hankered for tales like bees for honey. Now, her mama always told her that if she wanted something, “to jump at de sun”, because even though you might not land quite that high, at least you’d get off the ground. So Zora jumped from place to place, from the porch of the general store where she listened to folktales, to Howard University, to Harlem. And everywhere she jumped, she shined sunlight on the tales most people hadn’t been bothered to listen to until Zora. The tales no one had written down until Zora. Tales

MIDDLE GRADE BROWSABLE NONFICTION : Nerdlet: Animals by T.J. Resler

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  NERDLET : ANIMALS by T.J. Resler National Geographic Kids, 2020 ISBN: 978-1-4263-3872-4 Source: Media Masters Publicity Ages 9-12 All opinions expressed are solely my own.   ABOUT THE BOOK   Sometimes big nerdiness comes in a small package--and this little book is an animal nerd's dream! Meet animals of all kinds--from sharks and moles to orangutans and okapis-- in this quirky, jam-packed original from National Geographic Kids.If you thought you were brainy, take a look at the incredible critters in this book. Inside, you'll find a spider that spends its whole life in a bubble and birds that build nests so big, they're like avian apartment complexes! (And we're just getting started!)In this little animal "Nerdlet" you'll learn about the weirdest, coolest, most amazing creatures in the animal kingdom--and what makes them so complex. Plus, you'll have some of your most burning animal questions answered, such as What's the deal with croco

MIDDLE GRADE HISTORICAL/REALISTIC/CONTEMPORARY FICTION : Ground Zero by Alan Gratz

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GROUND ZERO A Novel of 9/11 by Alan Gratz Scholastic Press, 2021 ISBN: 978-1-338-24575-2 Ages 9-12 All opinions expressed are solely my own. ABOUT THE BOOK In time for the 20th anniversary of 9/11, bestselling author Alan Gratz delivers a breathtaking, multifaceted, and resonant look at this singular event in US history -- and how it still impacts us today.   It's September 11, 2001. Brandon, a 9-year-old boy, goes to work for the day with his dad . . . at the World Trade Center in New York City. When two planes hit the towers, Brandon and his father are trapped inside a fiery nightmare as terror and confusion swirl around them. Can they escape -- and what will the world be like when they do? In present-day Afghanistan, Reshmina is an 11-year-old girl who is used to growing up in the shadow of war, but she has dreams of peace and unity. When she ends up harboring a wounded young American soldier, she and her entire family are put in mortal danger. But Reshmina also lea

MIDDLE GRADE SPECULATIVE (FANTASY) FICTION : The Dragon in the Library by Louis Stowell

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THE DRAGON IN THE LIBRARY A Kit the Wizard Book by Louis Stowell, illustrated by Davide Ortu Walker Books US, 2021 ISBN: 978-1-5362-1493-2 Source : publisher for review Ages 9-12 All opinions expressed are solely my own.   ABOUT THE BOOK   In a fast-paced and funny adventure, Kit must use the magic of books to save the library—and its resident dragon—from a power-hungry tycoon. Kit Spencer can’t stand reading. She’d rather be outside playing and getting muddy than stuck inside with a book. But when her best friends, Josh and Alita, drag her to the local library, Kit makes an incredible discovery: she’s a wizard—and books are the key to her abilities. Unfortunately, a greedy businessman wants to tear down the beloved library, destroying all its magic. To make matters worse, there’s a sleeping dragon hidden there, and if she’s awakened, her wild power will wreak havoc. With the help of a friendly dragon-dog hybrid named Dogon, Kit and her companions will have to find a way to

MIDDLE GRADE NONFICTION : The Coolest Stuff on Earth by Brenda Scott Royce

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  THE COOLEST STUFF ON EARTH: A Closer Look at the Weird, Wild, and Wonderful National Geographic, 2020 ISBN : 978-1-4263-3858-8 Source: Media Masters Publicity Ages 9 and up All opinions expressed are solely my own. ABOUT THE BOOK Did you know that dogs can shake off a pound of water in less than a second? That some sand dunes whistle and sing? That the U.S. dollar bill is full of hidden symbols related to the number 13? Our world is filled with strange, bizarre, and weird happenings. But what do they mean? WHY are they important? And what secrets are behind them? These secrets and MORE are revealed through cool stories, action-packed photos, fantastic infographics, and exciting Q&As with in-the-field experts. Discover the secrets of sharkskin, the mysteries behind incredible island animals, the power behind lightning, how a rare gemstone changes color, and more. Kids will be captivated by this fresh way of looking at our amazing planet.   REVIEW    The Coolest Stuff on

GRAPHIC NOVEL ANIMAL FICTION : Doggo and Pupper by Katherine Applegate

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DOGGO AND PUPPER by Katherine Applegate, illustrated by Charlie Alder Feiwel and Friends, 2021 ISBN: 978-1-250-62097-2 Source: purchased Ages 4-8 All opinions expressed are solely my own.   ABOUT THE BOOK   Doggo is used to things being a certain way in his family. He likes routine. Cat says he's become boring. That is, until Pupper shows up! Pupper is playful and messy, and turns the house upside down. Soon, the humans realize that Pupper needs some training, and off he goes to puppy school. When Pupper comes back, he's well-behaved. He's not playful. He's not messy. But Doggo soon realizes that Pupper also isn't happy. So Doggo steps in to help, and rediscovers what it means to have fun. Doggo and Pupper launches a delightful new series by beloved author Katherine Applegate, featuring illustrations by Charlie Alder.   REVIEW   Doggo likes his life.   He enjoys being the cook waker, nap taker, bug stalker, girl walkercrumb eater, mail greeter, and other th

PICTURE BOOK FICTION REVIEW : Keeping the City Going by Brian Floca

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  KEEPING THE CITY GOING by Brian Floca Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2021 ISBN: 978-1-5344-9377-3 Source: publisher for review Ages 4-8 All opinions expressed are solely my own. ABOUT THE BOOK Brian Floca gives a thank you to the essential workers who keep their cities going during COVID-19 quarantine. We are here at home now, watching the world through our windows. Outside we see the city we know, but not as we’ve seen it before. The once hustling and bustling streets are empty. Well, almost empty. Around the city there are still people, some, out and about. These are the people keeping us safe. Keeping us healthy. Keeping our mail and our food delivered. Keeping our grocery stores stocked. Keeping the whole city going.   REVIEW   With his stunningly detailed illustrations and straightforward poem, Brian Floca honors the workers who kept the country running during the various COVID-19 lock downs.  The book points out the way New York City changed during the lock down and h

MIDDLE GRADE NONFICTION : Space Encyclopedia, 2nd Edition by David A. Aguilar

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  SPACE ENCYCLOPEDIA: A Tour of Our Solar System and Beyond, 2nd Edition written & illustrated by David A. Aguilar National Geographic, 2020 ISBN: 978-1-4263-3856-4 Source: Media Masters Publicity Ages 9 and up All opinions expressed are solely my own. ABOUT THE BOOK The updated and expanded edition of the hit Space Encyclopedia presents the most up-to-date findings on space exploration and research and breathtaking views of the universe, as captured by the latest and greatest technology, including the recent first ever image of a black hole. This complete reference contains everything kids need to know about our sun and planets including the new dwarf planets, the formation of the universe, space travel, the possibility of life beyond Earth, and more. Authored by David A. Aguilar, an internationally recognized astronomer and former Director of Science Information and Public Outreach at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, it is an authoritative and beautiful

MIDDLE GRADE HISTORICAL FICTION : Rescue by Jennifer A. Nielsen

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RESCUE by Jennifer A. Nielsen Scholastic Press, 2021 ISBN: 978-1-338-62099-3 Source: purchased Ages 9-12 All opinions expressed are solely my own. ABOUT THE BOOK Six hundred and fifty-seven days ago, Meg Kenyon's father left their home in France to fight for the Allies in World War II, and that was the last time Meg saw him. Recently, she heard he was being held prisoner by the Nazis, a terrible sentence from which Meg fears he'll never return. All she has left of him are the codes he placed in a jar for her to decipher, an affectionate game the two of them shared. But the codes are running low, and soon there'll be nothing left of Papa for Meg to hold on to at all. Suddenly, an impossible chance to save her father falls into Meg's lap. After following a trail of blood in the snow, Meggie finds an injured British spy hiding in her grandmother's barn. Captain Stewart tells her that a family of German refugees must be guided across Nazi-occupied France to

MIDDLE GRADE/YOUNG ADULT NONFICTION : Beneath the Waves by Stephanie Warren Drimmer

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  BENEATH THE WAVES :  Celebrating the Ocean Through Pictures, Poems, and Stories by Stephanie Warren Drimmer National Geographic Kids, 2020 ISBN: 978-1-4263-3916-5 Source: Media Masters Publicity Ages 9 and up All opinions expressed are solely my own.   ABOUT THE BOOK   Open this charming read-aloud book and you'll find amazing animal profiles, whimsical poetry, stunning photography, plus fascinating information about the wondrous creatures that call the ocean home. Starting with the seashore and journeying through the ocean's zones, readers will discover mangrove forests, coral reefs, and the deepest ocean depths. On this journey they will discover some of the extraordinary animals that live on shore and under the sea. Along the way, readers will enjoy poems, stories, fun facts, photo galleries, and more. Highlights include a foreword from explorer and renowned photojournalist Brian Skerry; an interview with National Geographic Explorer and marine conservationist Je

PICTURE BOOK REVIEWS : The Magical Yet by Angela Diterlizzi & The Power of Yet by Maryann Cocca-Leffler

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  THE MAGICAL YET words by Angela DiTerlizzi, art by Lorena Alvarez Disney-Hyperion, 2020 ISBN: 978-1-368-02562-1 Source : purchased Ages 4-8 All opinions expressed are solely my own. ABOUT THE BOOK This Yet finds a way, even when you don't, And, Yet knows you will, when you think you won't.   Each of us, from the day we're born, is accompanied by a special companion--the Yet. Can't tie your shoes? Yet! Can't ride a bike? Yet! Can't play the bassoon? Don't worry, Yet is there to help you out. Told in tight rhyme reminiscent of the great Dr. Seuss himself, this rollicking, inspirational picture book is perfect for every kid who is frustrated by what they can't do . . . YET.   REVIEW   A young girl crashes riding her bike.  As she walks her damaged bike home in frustration, the narrator tells her about The Magical Yet.  Depicted as a bright magical creature, The Magical Yet has helped the girl in the past as she learned to speak and crawl and walk.