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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: book review, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 26 - 50 of 2,731
26. Sketchnoting a book review: Illuminae by Amy Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

2015, Knopf

I've been delving into the fascinating world of sketchnoting, and have been practicing my skills (and trust me, you should see the very first one I created....practice does help!)  I've seen professor Karin Perry from Sam Houston State University do book reviews via sketchnotes and decided to try it out. 

What is NOT in the sketchnote is my personal review. So this is what I think of this book:

WOWOWOW!!!  This is 599 pages of intense plot, conflict, and survival all set in a science fiction thrillfest based on documents, journals, e-mails, imessages, and high security reports... and even concrete poetry.  The format itself is enough to draw the reader in and it reads fast because of this.  The characters are an excellent mix of adults and teens, which makes this science fiction novel so believable.  Adding diagrams of the ships adds a deeper dimension for the readers as well as their mode of travel through wormholes.  This is a deep space chase that will grab you to turn the next page to see what happens.  Huge twist at the end - VERY unexpected!  One of the top 10 best books I've read this year! 
Highly recommended for JH/HS. 

0 Comments on Sketchnoting a book review: Illuminae by Amy Kaufman and Jay Kristoff as of 11/12/2015 12:10:00 PM
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27. Praying for the Prodigal

by Sally Matheny

Praying for the Prodigal
by Andrea Merrell

Do you have a wayward child? Perhaps one that grew up attending church, yet later walked away from his faith?  Praying for the Prodigal is a book that offers spiritual encouragement as well as practical advice. And, who better to write this book than the mother of a prodigal son and a prodigal daughter.

Andrea Merrell shares heartbreaking stories of her teens spiraling down dangerous paths. They became distant, not sharing where they were or whom they were with, even to the point of not coming home at all. Between the time spent in the magistrate’s office and the hospitals, Andrea and her husband were carrying heavy burdens—financial, emotional, and spiritual.

She also shares the difficulties she and her husband had of carrying those burdens alone--secretly from friends. Andrea says, “If I learned anything in those dark days, it is that God is loving and faithful. His Word is true and prayer works.”

Thirty prayers, accompanied by scripture, provide parents a guide to get them started. Practical advice is offered, including how to set boundaries, how to stay calm, as well as a helpful parent-survival checklist.

At the end of the book, the prodigals, who finally returned home and to the Lord, share their thoughts and suggestions.

This is a book that every parent would benefit from reading.  It will impart wisdom to those just beginning their parenting journey and offer hope to those who are waiting on their prodigals to return.

This week, I have a special, two-part post. Andrea Merrell, the author of Praying for the Prodigal, kindly accepted my invitation to guest post on my blog. Please be sure to check back tomorrow to read Andrea's wonderful post, "How Can I Prodigal-Proof my Child?"


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28. All The Rage by Courtney Summers

2015, St. Martin's Griffin


Now: 
Romy wakes up on a dusty road in the middle of nowhere.  She vaguely remembers the night.  The only evidence something bad has happened is written on her stomach in bright red lipstick…

Before:
 She always thought Kellen was the most beautiful boy in town, and when her best friend Penny gets them together at a party one night, Romy is more than thrilled.  But the day after the party, Romy walks through the halls of school hearing the whispers and innuendos.   Kellen is no longer beautiful…she sees him for the monster he truly is.  But no one will believe her, especially because Kellen is the sheriff’s son - untouchable, likable, respected.

Living in a small town, everyone knows about Romy’s father.  He’s no longer around and she lives with her mom and her boyfriend (even more rumors there).  It’s different…there is no more screaming or her having to rescue her father again.  She and her mom make ends meet. 

School is tougher because there are sharks in the water.

There’s Tina, who has thinks she knows the truth and makes Romy’s life a living nightmare by constantly belittling and shaming her in public.

There’s Alec and Brock, who bump Romy in the halls, making snide remarks and sharing what happened with everyone they know.

There’s Penny, who was her best friend and now doesn’t even meet her eyes in the hallways.

And then there’s Leon….
Romy and Leon work together at the diner, and slowly, he lets Romy know how much he likes her.  He lives in the next town over, and has no idea what Romy is going through internally and externally.  She begins to think there can be life after rape, but she is careful to make sure he is separated from knowing what happened.  In time, they become closer and are trust begins to build. 

But one night will change that.  

Romy is found on that dusty road, trying to piece together what happened.  Penny, her former best friend, has disappeared and everyone is desperate to try and find such a beautiful girl.  Romy believes it should have been the other way around…it would make life easier for her and she doesn’t deserve to live.  Everyone has made it clear. 

What she hasn’t told anyone is when Penny showed up at the diner.  And she knows the truth about Kellen.  She wants Romy to press charges….and now Penny can’t be found…

Powerful.  Emotional. This novel is gritty to not only the core of what happened to Romy, but also the emotional whipping she takes herself through everyday because of it.  This is a book for a mature reader because it takes the reader not only through the rape, but the ugly aftermath as well.  The intensity is purposeful, and Courtney Summers delivers this slowly to a very unexpected ending which is both shocking and redemptive.  Highly recommended for high school.

Book pairs:
Fault Line by Christa Desir 

                                  Exposed by Kimberly Marcus

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29. Book Review: Charlie Bumpers Vs. The Perfect Little Turkey by Bill Harley and Illustrated by Adam Gustavson


Book received at no charge in exchange for an honest review.
Thanksgiving at the Bumpers' house looks to be a grand event. With fifteen people slated to attend, Charlie Bumpers can only imagine the incredible feast. Nothing can go wrong. At least that's what Charlie thought until he finds out his bratty cousin Chip will be staying at his house and sleeping in his room. What ensues nearly destroys Charlie's Thanksgiving.

Harley adeptly handles family relationships with humor through Charlie, the middle child who never seems to catch a break. However, this time he does when his older brother quits picking on him long enough to help him out and his annoying sister sticks by him for once without trying to get him in trouble. A heartwarming look into family life with Charlie finding a new definition for family. The reader can't help but relate to the real life scenarios and characters while they learn tolerance and acceptance.

Rating ★★★

Publishing Information:

Publisher: Peachtree Publishers (Sept. 1, 2015)
ISBN: 978-1-56145-835-6
Ages 7-10


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30. Trouble Is a Friend of Mine Book Review

Title: Trouble Is a Friend of Mine Author: Stephanie Tromly Publisher: Kathy Dawson Books Publication Date: August 4, 2015 ISBN-13: 978-0525428404 336 pp. ARC provided by publisher There are hi-jinks aplenty in this screwball mystery by Stephanie Tromly. Zoe is the new kid at school when she meets Digby, a weird, smart, completely impossible boy who drags her into an investigation of a

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31. Review: Slade House by David Mitchell

Time is, Time was, Time is not What a bonus it is to have a new David Mitchell book only a year after the incredible The Bone Clocks. David Mitchell started this story on twitter but became obsessed with the story he had started and needed to see it through. The result is a ghost […]

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32. New Jersey - The 50 States Fun Fact Blog Extravaganza!

New Jersey knows that it's the butt of jokes throughout the nation, but we also know that we've got a great state with unique features that no other state can match.  From the mountains to the shore, from the cities to the Pines, we've got a wealth of natural beauty, history, and culture.  It's like a well-kept secret.  But now, The Fifty States: Explore the U.S.A. with 50 fact-filled maps, written by Gabrielle Balkin and illustrated by Sol Linero (Quarto, 2015) is bringing some of our secrets to light.


Take a peek at the New Jersey page, and then I'll share a few of my favorite NJ gems.



Three of my NJ favorites which are featured in The Fifty States: Explore the U.S.A. with 50 fact-filled maps:
 BRIGHT IDEA In West Orange you can visit inventor Thomas Edison’s lab and house.
Thomas Edison National Historical Park is a fascinating place to visit.  In my opinion it beats visiting Thomas Edison Center in Menlo Park, NJ and his winter estate in Fort Myers, Florida.  He didn't just invent the light bulb, he invented everything you need to use a light bulb - from the lamp to the power grid.  And of course, he invented much more than the light bulb.  Not a perfect man, by any means, but a perfectly brilliant inventor!
"Edison labs Main St Lakeside Av jeh" by Jim.henderson - Own work. Licensed under CC0 via Commons - https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Edison_labs_Main_St_Lakeside_Av_jeh.jpg#/media/File:Edison_labs_Main_St_Lakeside_Av_jeh.jpg

LUCY THE ELEPHANT In 1881 the U.S. Patent Office granted inventor James Lafferty the right to make animal-shaped buildings for 17 years. His first creation, Lucy, still stands in Margate, Atlantic City.
She's a whopping 6-stories high and 134 years old, and she sits right next to the beach.  And what a view from inside!  I'm not positive but I do remember that her interior paint color is "stomach," or something similarly intestinal.
By Harriet Duncan (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
FEBRUARY 1913: Silk workers in Paterson begin a six-month-long strike for better working conditions.
Paterson, NJ, may not be your first thought when seeking tourist sites, but it's well worth a visit.  Paterson Great Falls National Historical Park is one of the nation's newest National Parks. The falls (one of the largest in the nation) and park sit in the midst of an urban city of more than 145,000 people. The falls and the people of Paterson were powerhouses of the U.S. Industrial Revolution.
Photo by L Taylor (c)
If you want to know more great sites in NJ, you'll have to come see for yourself. (BTW, Come See For Yourself, was once our state slogan. I think they should have gone with the more popular, "New Jersey - You got a problem with that?")

Note:
Book images and quotes were provided by the publisher.  I have no publisher or bookseller affiliations and received no compensation.  I am participating for love of state.

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33. “Believe”: A Book Review of the Kids’ Edition (and Who Won the $25 Gift Card!)

by Sally Matheny

Believe Book Review


My husband and I recently finished reading with our eleven-year-old son the kids’ edition of Believe, edited by Randy Frazee. We read one of the thirty chapters each night. The first ten chapters are about key beliefs of the Christian life. The second ten chapters talk about key practices of the Christian life. And the final ten chapters contain the key virtues of the Christian life.

Each chapter begins by asking the reader a key question to ponder. It then presents a key idea and a key verse.  Also, there is a Think About It section before the introduction. Then, actual scripture (NIV) from the Old and New Testaments, present the core truths, followed by three discussion questions.

 


We truly enjoyed reading this book together. It held my son’s attention with its short excerpts from the Bible. There are blue and white illustrations on almost every other page. The book isn't watered down or fluffed up! It was pure scripture, with a thought to ponder before reading, followed by three great discussion questions. These questions often generated further conversations with our son.

There are versions of this book for ages 4-8, 8-12 (which is the one we read), 13- 18, and one for adults. In a year or two, I’d love to get the teen version for our son.  Several years ago, he made a decision to follow Jesus Christ. We aim to train, nurture and equip him for his journey. Believe is an ironclad tool that will enhance his understanding of the Sword of Truth and how to apply it.
Read more »

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34. Nimona by Noelle Stevenson

2015, HarperCollins

Take one slightly OCD supervillain with a penchant for science, one golden knight who works for the Institution of Law Enforcement and Heroics, and one superbad shape-shifter girl.

Swirl it all with a heavy dose of sarcastic humor, a heaping of death and destruction, and a taste of the days of Lancelot with a hint of today's science technology.

Read for a day (or two) and you'll see what an OUTSTANDING graphic novel this is!!

Ballister Blackheart is a supervillain.  He's created not only a name but a reputation for being the nemesis of the kingdom's golden boy, Sir Ambrosius Goldenloin (and the humor begins...).  They've been fighting for years because of a joust gone wrong and nothing will mend the friendship they once shared.

And then along comes Nimona.  Such a cute girl with red hair...and a penchant to want to destroy, kill and maim.  She's a shapeshifter, and can replicate into anything in order to help Sir Blackheart take over the kingdom.  But there are a few slight problems.

He wants control and order, she lives in chaos.
He's not into hurting or killing people, she doesn't think twice about not doing it.
He's a seasoned veteran, who's been working on his reputation for awhile.  She's a young newbie, with lots of enthusiasm and curiosity.

Together, they are beginning to tear the kingdom apart (even though she's allergic to bananas  and can hardly watch a scary movie), especially after they find out what the Institution is truly up to.

The Director assigns Sir Goldenloin the task of killing the girl and capturing Blackheart, but he's not sure he can do it.  Go against the Institution and lose his place of glory or kill a little kid?  What's a knight to do?

Stevenson creates a graphic novel which not only tells a great story, but also brings about fits of laughter.  Her art is a spot-on delivery of building and creating characters and their personalities the reader understand through through the artwork Stevenson creates.  She carries it forward not only through artwork, but the subtle ways the characters interact and speak to each other all while an exciting tale is told.  No wonder this was nominated for the National Book Award....it's truly an excellent GN!    HIGHLY recommended for JH/HS


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35. Wednesday Writing Workout: A "59 REASONS TO WRITE" Warmup


Jo Knowles’ writing warm-ups are but one of many ways Kate Messner gets teachers walking the walk in her not-to-miss Thumbs Up book 59 Reasons to Write (Stenhouse, 2015).

The author of middle grade and YA novels including READ BETWEEN THE LINES, SEE YOU AT HARRY’S and JUMPING OFF SWINGS, Jo Knowles revved up Teachers Write campers’ engines each Monday with her Writing Warm-ups. 59 Reasons to Write shares many of them with readers, including today’s Wednesday Writing Workout, one of Jo’s favorites.

Jo holds a Master’s Degree in Children’s Literature from Simmons College and she teaches in the MFA program at Southern New Hampshire University.  Her awards and honors include NY Times and ALA Notable Book distinctions and the PEN New England Children’s Book Discover Award. 

Thanks to Stenhouse – and – Jo for their permission to present the following warm-up as today’s Wednesday Writing Workout.

Enjoy!

Esther Hershenhorn

       . . . . . . . . . . 


A Jo Knowles Warm-up 

One of my favorite exercises to help people get started is to have them describe the kitchen of their childhood.  If you moved around a lot, choose the one that has the strongest memories.  Place your child self in that room.  Now:

What do you see?  Describe the room in as much details as you can remember.

What do you smell? Was yours a kitchen of delicious odors?  Or was it rarely used?  What kinds of foods were cooked?  Did you like them?  Why or why not?

What do you hear?  What kinds of conversations took place in the kitchen, if any?  Were there moments of joy?  Arguing?  Worry? Love?

What do you taste?  What are the strongest tastes you remember?  A morning bowl of cereal? The batter on a spoon? Who made the food?

As you write, you will likely notice a plethora of memories flooding your brain and your heart.  Seize these and write them down.  Describe them in as much detail as you can.  Soon, you will discover a story taking shape.  Grab it!

Jo Knowles

59 Reasons to Write

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36. Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge 2015 - October #1 Under His Skin


About the Book

Earth girls are never easy. But they're worth it.

Bakery owner Annabelle Sparks' business is booming ever since she won reality TV's Cupcake Wars. The one thing deflating her happy soufflé? The extremely sexy Kaden Chance only sees her as a best friend-and Annabelle wants so much more. After waiting a year for him recognize their chemistry, she's giving up and dating other people.

What she doesn't know is Kaden's heart doesn't actually beat. He's not human. Heck, he's not even from Earth. To retain his intergalactic immunity, no one can ever know he is an extraterrestrial. But when Annabelle starts dating, something strange happens to Kaden's unmoved heart: it begins to beat. Now he faces an impossible choice-tell Annabelle the truth and be deported-or lose his last chance at love.

Buy the Book


Here's what I'm giving it:

Rating: 4 stars

Here's why:

Disclaimer: I received no compensation from the author, Netgalley or the publisher for this honest review.

This book took me a couple of days to read because of family distractions but, I'm sure if I had not been interrupted, I would have finished it in one sitting.

I've read some of Ms. O'Neale's other works and it was nice to see a science fiction romance one in the mix.

I like her treatment of female leads. They are not way over the top strong nor are they overly weak. Annabelle was a nice blend of strength and vulnerability. She knew when to stand her ground and when to bend.

My feelings toward Kaden were a little bit more ambivalent. There were moments that I liked him and moments when he irritated me to no end.

Overall the two leads played off each other well and the secondary characters contributed yet did not detract from the storyline.

Would I recommend this? Yes, I think this book is a good start for this series.

0 Comments on Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge 2015 - October #1 Under His Skin as of 10/20/2015 7:39:00 AM
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37. Thumbs Up for Another Kate Messner Book That Helps Us Walk the Walk

KateMessner is the first to admit: writing with her students made her a mentor – and – a far better teacher.
Her newest Stenhouse book, 59 Reasons toWrite, offers teachers 59 Mini-lessons to help them become mentors and better teachers, too, along with prompts, Teacher-Q’s and Author-A’s and daily writing warm-ups and assignments.
Walking the walk is suddenly doable – for all writers, classroom teachers or not.

An outgrowth of her online summer writing camp Teachers Write, the book’s purposefully designed to get us writing every day, whether on our own or as part of a group.
Chapters move from getting started to organizing our time and stories, through narrative elements such as characters, point of view, voice, mood, setting, plot and pacing, nonfiction and fiction needs and poetry to writer’s block, revising, critiquing and reflection.
Everything we ask of our students Kate and her “faculty” of award-winning authors ask of us.

It’s the luminous 52+ faculty members who both teach and inspire, underscoring how, when it comes to writing, we’re all in this together. 
Again, walking the walk is suddenly doable, thanks to this insightful, comprehensive, hands-on text.
And who wouldn’t want to learn from talents such as Linda Urban, Donna Gephart, Jo Knowles, Shutta Crum, Jenny Meyerhoff and Barb Rosenstock, just to name a few?

I was especially taken with the honest Q + A – The Best of the Q-And-A Wednesday sessions from the online summer camp.
Again, notables truthfully responded to a host of questions, including those about intimidation, making and finding writing time, connecting with our characters, handling point of view, the passage of time and too much description.

Tools, short-cuts, exercises.  The list of writing aids goes on and on.  Think Writer’s Notebooks, three-column brainstorming, outlining, world building, selecting and using mentor texts. 

“Write,” Kate tells her readers, “because you have things to say – arguments to make, stories to tell, poems to share – and no one else in the world has your unique voice with which to say them.  And do it,” she adds, “for the young writers you hope to inspire.  In making time for your own writing, you’ll be crossing a barrier, joining them as real, vulnerable members of a community of writers.”

I add my “Amen!” to my sincere thanks for following her Real Revision with yet another valuable Kate Messner writing book for those of us lucky enough to be “TeachingAuthors” and writers.
  
You’ll be adding your thanks, too, once you read, learn, write and share Kate Messner’s 59 Reasons to Write.


Esther Hershenhorn

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38. Fuzzy Mud - a review

Fuzzy Mud by Louis Sachar, winner of the Newbery Medal and National Book Award for Holes.  Narrated by Kathleen McInerny with a full cast and an author's note read by Sachar himself. (Listening Library, 2015)
4 hours
Target audience: Grades 5 and up

I reviewed Fuzzy Mud for AudioFile Magazine, and loved it. As I should have expected from Louis Sachar, there is much more to it than I first expected.  It's a sci-fi, adventure thriller,that focuses on the very broad concept of ecology as well as the more intimate problem of bullying. A link to my review for AudioFile Magazine is here. [http://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/104469/]

I highly recommend it.

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39. How to Win at High School by Owen Matthews

HarperTeen, 2015

 I was tasked by a student recently that most of the books I booktalked did not have a guy as the main character….so I went in search of some and this book popped.  SO glad it did! 
 

Adam Higgs recently moved to a new school, Nixon Collegiate, a complete opposite of where he went.  BMWs and Mercedes are standard issue cars here, and the cliques prove who has it and who copies it.  Adam fits into neither category.  In fact, he fits into only one – the loser category.  He’s carried this burden since forever.  Unlike his uber popular little sister and his athlete god status in high school brother, Adam has never been able to climb higher.  It’s just not in him.  His days consist of going to school, hanging out with Brian, the only friend he has from his old school, and seeing his brother Sam, now in a wheelchair from an injury his senior year but living independently.  Sam relives his glory days through stories and tells Adam he needs to experience it before it’s all over, but how?

Adam finds his inspiration in the movie Scarface. Kicked around, Scarface rises to the top slowly to find glory.  With that in mind, Adam takes what little money he makes at the local pizza and buys new clothes.  And the first opportunity to make a name for himself happens in chemistry.  Sarah freaking Bryant is his lab partner and when an assignment comes up, he takes it upon himself to do the work for the goddess, but at a price ten bucks a page and 50 bucks for an A.  Hey, if these people have the money, Adam figures it’s a way to make some. 

Soon his homework business begins to take off and people begin to notice how Sarah, Rob, Jessie, Alton and the others are seen with Adam.  With the growth of his business, Adam figures he can do a little more to win at high school.  Soon the homework business turns into fake IDs, turns into booze, turns into….bad.

And just when Adam is at the top of his game, his empire begins to crumble with huge consequences….

For guys wanting a guy book, this one is it, hands down.  And yes, ANY reader who enjoys real life reads will quickly snap this book up. Seen from the perspective of a teen zero to hero, the reader walks beside him at home, at work and at school to see the entire picture of a day in the life of Adam from Day One to the end.  You’ll want to warn him of the danger ahead, but can only stand there and watch the train wreck happen.  And that’s what makes this book amazing.  The plot and is solid, the characters very believable and the lives of everyone involved isn’t contrite.  Pair it up with 1-2 pages a chapter, and it reads fast...a true page-turner.    
 
Book pair:  Playing with Matches by Brian Katcher

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40. The Otter, the Spotted Frog and the Great Flood Book Review & Extension Activity

Over the years my family has enjoyed reading a variety of “great flood” tales from our local Blount County Library. This month found us enjoying the Creek Indian version called, The Otter, the Spotted Frog and the Great Flood by Gerald Hausman and beautifully illustrated by Ramon Shiloh.

The Otter the Spotted Frog and the Great Flood

In this version, spotted frog announces to the world that a great flood is coming which will destroy all of their homes. All of the animals ignore spotted frog’s warning, except an otter named Listener.

Ridiculed by all the other animals, Listener heeds spotted Frog’s warnings and begins to build a raft to try and survive the coming flood.

Wisdom Tales

As the story progresses and Listener survives the flood, he learns via a mosquito and a fish about his future wife who becomes “First Woman”.

Listener the Otter, and First Woman the mosquito turned fish, both become the first two-legged beings to walk on earth.

From that time on, the earth was good to them and they always listened to Spotted Frog, who everyone knew was the frog who saved the world by singing.

Our family and friends alike have greatly loved this book. First because the story is told brilliantly by Gerald Hausman. It uses simple and concise language while sharing the story in a simple manner. Also part of this storytelling adventure are the exquisite paintings and illustrations of Ramon Shiloh. There is a nice even flow between story and text forming a single cohesive unit of storytelling magic.

wisdom tales

This beautiful book is one we will come to again and again.

Something To Do

Discover the Creek Indians

Knowing very little about the Creek Indians we decided to spend some time on the internet to learn more about them. The Creek Indian Nation is named after the Ocmulgee Creek in Georgia. They originally called themselves Isti or Istichata, but began to identify themselves as Muskogee soon after Europeans arrived.

The Creeks live in the Georgia, Alabama and Florida and are part of the Seminole people. To learn more about them and their culture have a look at these websites.

Native American Facts for Kids

Want to know more Creek Stories and Myths have a look here.

Just like Otter we thought building a raft was a really good idea. We got our inspiration here.

duct tape raft  duct tape raft 2

Duct tape raft 3

We are VERY proud to announce that, for the 3rd year, Wisdom Tales Press is a Platinum Sponsor for the upcoming Multicultural Children’s Book Day!! We are incredibly honored to have them (and our other sponsors-more details to come!) on board to help us spread the word on the importance of getting multicultural books into the hands of young readers. More details on MCCBD 2016 sponsorship can be found HERE.

Wisdom Tales Press

***Some of these links are affiliate links. I was given a copy of this book for review. The opinions expressed are purely my own.

Follow me on Pinterest!
Follow Valarie Budayr @Jump into a Book’s board Jump Into a Book Kidlit Booklists on Pinterest. Follow Valarie Budayr @Jump into a Book’s board A Year In The Secret Garden on Pinterest.

Do your young readers love nature and all of nature’s critters? Experience the magical story of a family of foxes that took up residence right in the front yard of the author and publisher, Valarie Budayr. The Fox Diaries: The Year the Foxes Came to our Garden offers an enthusiastically educational opportunity to observe this fox family grow and learn together.

The Fox Diaries

From digging and hunting to playing and resting, this diary shares a rare glimpse into the private lives of Momma Rennie and her babies. Come watch as they navigate this wildly dangerous but still wonderful world. Great to share with your children or students, The Fox Diaries speaks to the importance of growing and learning both individually and as a family unit. It is a perfect book for story time or family sharing. Not only can you read about the daily rituals of this marvelous fox family, there is an information-packed resource section at the end of the book that includes lots of facts and even a few “fox movies” that you can enjoy with your family. Grab your copy of this beautiful and inspiring book HERE.

The post The Otter, the Spotted Frog and the Great Flood Book Review & Extension Activity appeared first on Jump Into A Book.

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41. I Remember You Book Review

Title: I Remember You Author: Cathleen Davitt Bell Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers Publication Date: February 10, 2015 ISBN-13: 978-0385754552 320 pp. ARC provided by publisher Juliet is a good student who has never had a boyfriend before. So when hockey player Lucas tells her he remembers their first kiss, she's not sure what to make of him. Cathleen Davitt Bell creates a premise

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42. Fever of Animals

I can’t remember if I put my hand up to review Miles Allinson’s Fever of Animals or if it was sent to me because the publisher’s PR team thought it might be up my alley. Either way, I was pleasantly and slightly surprised and confused when it arrived. The winner of the 2014 Victorian Premier’s […]

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43. Book Review: Next Move, You're Dead (The Next Move, You're Dead Trilogy Book 1) by Linda L. Barton

Description from Amazon Homicide Detective John Cooper has always followed the evidence to solve any case; that is until a mysterious caller begins to make him question that evidence. With the murder...

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44. Kishaz Reading Corner: Caged Warriior by Lindsey Piper

Disclaimer: I received no compensation from the author or publisher for this honest review.




About the Book

The first installment in this fierce and sensual new paranormal romance series features demonic gladiators, ruthless mafia villains, and a proud race on the brink of extinction.

Ten years ago, Audrey MacLaren chose to marry her human lover, making her an exile from the Dragon Kings, an ancient race of demons once worshiped as earthly gods. Audrey and her husband managed to conceive, and their son is the first natural-born Dragon King in a generation—which makes him irresistible to the sadistic scientist whose mafia-funded technology allows demon procreation. In the year since her husband was murdered, Audrey and her little boy have endured hideous experiments.

Shackled with a collar and bound for life, Leto Garnis is a Cage warrior. Only through combat can Dragon Kings earn the privilege of conceiving children. Leto uses his superhuman speed and reflexes to secure the right for his two sisters to start families. After torture reveals Audrey’s astonishing pyrokenesis, she is sent to fight in the Cages. If she survives a year, she will be reunited with her son. Leto is charged with her training. Initially, he has no sympathy for her plight. But if natural conception is possible, what has he been fighting for? As enemies, sparring partners, lovers, and eventual allies, Leto and Audrey learn that in a violent underground world, love is the only prize worth winning.

Buy the Book

Here's what I'm giving it:

Rating: 4 stars

Here's why:

This book was a "stumble upon" one for me at the local library. Our library has a romance section so I decided to start with "A" last names and work my way forward.

The cover caught my eye as did the blurb. I'm glad I picked this one up because, for me, from the very first chapter to the action-packed ending, I was invested.

Audrey and Leto were an amazing pair and watching the byplay between them as well as the heat and intensity of attraction kept me riveted.

Audrey's backstory, her brutal honesty and her reason for fighting just made me want to see the two of them succeed even more. Leto was no slouch and was just as interesting a character as Audrey.

Would I recommend this book? Yes, I would.

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45. Review: Vicious by VE Schwab

In light of VE Schawb recently announcing on twitter that Vicious is getting a sequel (!!), I decided I needed to review this book here. ASAP. Because it is glorious. It’s about super villains! It’s dark and scary and evil and full of anti-heroes with complex backstories and warped thinking to justify their evil intentions. Also […]

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46. Drowned City: Hurricane Katrina and New Orleans by Don Brown

HMH Young Readers, 2015

I picked up this graphic novel because I was intrigued not only by the cover, but by how this non-fiction GN would stack up to what happened....I wasn't disappointed.

At this moment in time, there are two very significant historical moments high school students have lived through and will tell their grandchildren they were alive when it happened.  Most students can tell you about the 9/11 tragedy because there is a memorial set up, it's been televised and Youtubed, and schools usually honor those who died every year.

When asked what the other significant historical moment happened during their lifetimes, most had to think about it until I showed them the cover of the book.  Don Brown, who wrote and illustrated this GN, tells the tragic story of not only Hurricane Katrina the natural disaster, but also the tragedies that happened to those who stayed, the heroes and the villains, and how this natural disaster was SO overlooked not only by the state, but also by the federal government.  Brown's illustrations depict the sadness and desperation people felt, from those at the Superdome to those trapped in their homes, to the patients in hospitals left behind and based on factual evidence.

Brown also injects sad truth into the book as well.  Authorities in charge of the city from the top down weren't available or around during the aftermath.  Some in the police force abandoned their posts and the companies who volunteered their services  before the hurricane hit to transport those who couldn't get out were turned away...but there were the unknown heroes as well, who used their boats and other water vehicles to help those stranded on their rooftops.

While booktalking this book last week, I asked students to recall the heat in Texas in August, when temperatures easily reached into the 100s.  Would they be able to stand on a paved road for 24 hours with little or no water or food?  Coupled with extreme humidity, raw sewage, toxic water and the smell of death in the air....that's what people went through who were left behind.

This is the powerful image Don Brown creates, not only physically but emotionally as well.  And it is also something students need to know more about instead of compartmentalizing it as another hurricane that wrecked a city.

This is an important book to have in any library because it tells a story needing to be told in a format conveying more than words on pages.  Highly recommended.    

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47. Picture Book Roundup - October 2015 edition

This edition of the Picture Book Roundup features three funny books, a hilarious cautionary tale, and a sweet bookish story to melt your heart. Enjoy!

Review copies of Night Animals by Gianna Marino (Viking, 2015) and In! Over! and On! by Ethan Long (Penguin, 2015) were provided by the publishers at my request. The Good Little Book by Kyo Maclear (Tundra, 2015), Everyone Loves Bacon by Kelly DiPucchio (Farrar, Straus, & Giroux, 2015), and Ragweed's Farm Dog Handbook by Anne Vittur Kennedy (Candlewick, 2015)

If you can't access the slide show with reviews below, you can see it on RiffleBooks at this link. [https://read.rifflebooks.com/list/185319]

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48. All We Have is Now by Lisa Schroeder

Emerson and Vince are walking through the streets of Portland and it's pretty quiet...not a lot of traffic, not a lot of businesses open, very few people out.  It's been this way for awhile because everyone is spending time with their loved ones.  You see, in 28 hours, a meteor will hit the United States and those who survive will be few and far between.

Emerson and Vince just have each other.  They've been living on the streets and there is no one closer than each other.  With not much time left, both of them have made a pact to see the end of their world on their own terms, and with this in mind, they go to that jumping point in the city....and it's there that will change their lives.

Carl is standing on the bridge Emerson and Vince go to, and he saves their lives.  He tells the story of how he met someone who made a wish come true for him.  In turn, Carl is to pay it forward to five people, and Emerson and Vince will make his fifth wish happen.  When asked what they want, both of them reply with the only thing they've never really had an abundance of - money.  Carl gives him his wallet filled with money and has only one request...pay it forward.  People will be easy to find, you just have to look and see which ones have wishes or regrets and make them happen.

Emerson and Vince don't know what he's talking about until they meet people along the way as they make their way through town.  Until they see the one person who always wanted to go to Paris...and they make it happen for her.  They take two little girls home, but also take them on an adventure through a fairy tale.  And slowly, their friendship begins to change from that of friendship to one on a deeper level.

Emerson has a regret she's not sharing with Vince...the one that makes her want to go home one last time.  She knows if she tells him, he'll want to change the regret into reality, but it's so hard to go back after what she's been through...and it's too late, isn't it?

Part novel in verse, part prose, Schroeder is the weaver to lives.  Although many of the people Vince and Emerson meet are strangers, there is an invisible string that will weave their stories into one.  It's a story about what people do knowing their living their last days, but more than that, it's about the impact relationships have on one another, especially when viewed through different perspectives, even if it's the same situation.  Excellent quick read for high school!
Link to book trailer

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49. Book Review: The Job by Craig Davis

Description from Amazon Joe B. enjoys the sweet life as a vice president at a huge conglomerate, Universal Whirligig. But along with the Big Boss' favor, he has also gained the notice of a bitter...

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50. Book Review: Jabberwocky by Daniel Coleman

Description from Amazon How can a boy succeed where an army has failed? Tjaden, a young man who aspires to be an Elite soldier, blames himself when Elora’s beautiful face is disfigured by a...

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