Monday, November 30, 2015

Two mice

Two Mice - Sergio Ruzzier
by Sergio Ruzzier
Age range: 2 to 5 years old.

This little book tells the adventures of two little mice constantly counting up to 3, and then counting down to 1 again.
The text is predictable enough to allow the kids to count and guess the number before you say it, encouraging the interaction.
The illustrations, by Ruzzier too, are really nice and tell by themselves the rest of the story.
Not a typical counting book, but an enjoyable one!

Sunday, November 29, 2015

I can roar like a lion.

I Can Roar Like a Lion - Frank Asch
by Frank Asch
Age: up to 4 years old

This board book portraits 18 different animals with a big hole in their face. Kids can peep out their faces through the hole and pretend to be that animal. Roar like a lion, squeak like a mouse, oink like a pig, chew like a cow and stick out the tongue like a snake are some of the funny things the kids are encouraged to do in each page.
This is not a book for a quiet story time. Not at all! It is very interactive, and being silly and noisy is an important part of the amusement.
I think a mirror instead of a hole would be another interesting version of this book.

I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

The most magnificent thing

The Most Magnificent Thing - Ashley Spires
by Ashley Spires
Age range: 3 to 7 years old

The girl loves to build things with her dog-assistant. She is not only very creative. She is a perfectionist. And today she wants to make the most magnificent thing! She knows exactly how the most magnificent thing looks. She knows perfectly well how the most magnificent thing works. It's just that for some reason all the first twenty "things" she makes are wrong! She is so frustrated! Actually she is really mad!
But after a well deserved break, she realizes that not all is wrong with the wrong "things". Actually some parts are pretty good. She could use the good parts to finally make the most magnificent thing. And she does.
Maybe the most magnificent thing is not exactly what she was expecting, but it is just what she wanted. And if it provides a great shared moment of fun and laugh, then it definitively is the most magnificent thing!

The story is funny and cute. The illustrations are amazing, focused in the character and the "things". The background, when there's one, is delineated in black on white. 

I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Friday, November 27, 2015

The rabbit ate my flip flops.

The Rabbit Ate My Flip-Flops (The Rabbit Ate My... Book 2) - Rachel Elizabeth Cole
by Rachel Elizabeth Cole
Age range: 8 to 12 years old

In The rabbit ate my homework, we met Drew and Libby, and knew how they ended having Tiny, a not so tiny overactive rabbit, as a pet.
In this second book in the series Drew and Libby go to camp with Nana and Papa while their parents are out of town. This is not Drew's best plan for this week, since Galaxy Guilds, the best computer game of the year, is being released and he will have to wait till he's back home to play it.
Things get even more complicated when Libby hides Tiny in the trailer so he is not alone at home during a week.
Everything will happen in one week! New friends, bullies, Tiny getting lost and then found, a not working trailer's toilet, a big bunnies' rescue, and even a new rabbit to bring home.
The series are really entertaining, and always have a good message in them. The characters are adorable, and it's very easy to relate to them.
Looking forward to the next book in the series to discover what the rabbit(s) are eating this time!

I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Have you seen my dragon?

Have You Seen My Dragon? - Steve Light
by Steve Light
Age range: up to 6 years old.

The poor kid has lost his dragon, and he will look for it along the book. The reader has the chance of help him find the dragon disguised in the black and white illustrations. At the same time the reader can count up to 20 the few colored objects in each page.
My kids favorite part was the map when you can follow the dragon and the boy's route.
We read this book a hundred times in the last week. It instantly became a favorite!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Too many carrots

Too Many Carrots (Capstone Young Readers) - Katy Hudson
by Katy Hudson
Age range: up to 6 years old.

Rabbit is a hoarder. He can't help himself. He hides carrots in his burrow until there's no more room for a rabbit to live there. Thankfully he has very good friends who offer to share their homes with him, but one by one their homes are destroyed in catastrophes related to Rabbit's absurd amount of carrots...
Only when all of them are homeless and frozen under the rain, Rabbit realizes that maybe he has the solution just in front of his eyes. Sharing his carrots and his burrow feels so good!

The story is really sweet and the illustrations are incredibly beautiful. All the characters are so cute you feel like touching the page.

I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Monday, November 23, 2015


Float - Daniel Miyares, Daniel Miyares
by Daniel Miyares
Age range: up to 8 years old

I remember making boats from newspaper in rainy days when I was a child. I remember the excitement when folding the paper, trying to make it perfect for a perfect performance. I remember the joy of seeing it surfing at great speed. I remember running along with it. I remember feeling disappointment when it got crushed or sunk.

This book brought all this adventures back to me, and it provided a precious moment with my kids. Since the story is wordless, all this adventures can be incorporated to the story. I wish it would have rained yesterday afternoon to sail some paper sailboats! We actually folded boats, but they had to settle to the living room carpet.

When our main character comes back home holding his wrecked boat, a hug, dry clothes and a hot chocolate with marshmallows are waiting for him. And of course, a brand new sheet of newspaper. What could he do now that the sun is shinning?

I remember folding newspaper to make a perfect plane when I was a child...

Thursday, November 19, 2015

The big fat counting book

The Big Fat Counting Book - Harris Tobias, Brianne Burnell
by Harris Tobias
illustrations by Brianne Burnell

I liked many thing about this book. The text is smart. This probably sounds weird since it's just a counting book with animals from 1 to 10 in each page. So, what's so smart about the text? It is written using funny alliterative words: "Five flabby flamingos". It transmits the idea of the richness of the language using 10 different ways to say "big/fat". The book is full of words like tubby, overstuffed, saggy, tremendous, stout, and more.
The illustrations are lovely. The pages are full of these rounded, colorful animals you can put the finger on to count them!
The big fat counting book is a 5 stars to me.

Age range: up to 5 years old.

I received this copy from the author in exchange for an honest review. You can visit Mr. Tobias in his blog or take a look at more of his books here.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

A rock is lively

A Rock Is Lively - Dianna Hutts Aston, Sylvia Long
by Dianna Hutts Aston
illustrations by: Sylvia Long

If your kid is interested in science this series is a great option. The text is easy to understand for kids 8 years old and up. The pictures are really nice and colorful. The layout is smart and neat. And the topics are varied and interesting.

A rock is lively contains a great amount of information about rocks as big as an asteroid, and as tiny as a grain of sand. Rocks can be so different and have so many different uses. Man uses and has always used rocks as tools, weapons, for construction, art, and more. Animals use rocks too. All of this can be discovered in this book. Highly recommended.

We also read and enjoyed A nest is noisy some time ago.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Red Sled

Red Sled - Lita Judge
by Lita Judge

What happens with the red sled when the little boy leaves it outside during the night? Those foot prints and tracks are very suspicious... The little boy will try to find out what's going on, and even join the fun.
Lovely wintry story! Can't wait for the snow to come!
I'm really interested in check more of Judge's work. We loved her illustrations.

Age range: 3 to 6 years old.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Don't push the button!

Don't Push the Button - Bill  Cotter
by Bill Cotter

How do you not push the big, red, tempting button???
Specially if the ONLY rule in Larry's book is do not push the button?!?!?!
The book is simple, funny, and very interactive. I can't imagine a kid not liking it. We laughed each time we pushed the button (yes... we did push the button...) and something funny happened to Larry. Hilarious!
Warning: You might want to go on pushing every button you see after closing the book.

Age range: 2 to 6 years old.

Friday, November 13, 2015

The case of the vanishing little brown bats.

The Case of the Vanishing Little Brown Bats: A Scientific Mystery - Sandra Markle
A scientific mystery
by Sandra Markle.

A few years ago researchers started noticing that an important amount of little brown bats, among other bats, were dying during their hibernation period in winter. Since then many groups of researchers from different organizations have been working together to discover the reason for this disappearance, and to find a solution to this big problem. 
Markle exposes in this book the different leads the scientist followed at the beginning, and how they found the right path to finally find "the killer". The author not only explains the importance of bats for humans, the symptoms of the sick bats, etc., but she also shows in an engaging way how scientists work to solve a problem. Without naming it, Markle is showing the kids how the scientific method works.
The book also includes a glossary, a list of books and websites to know more, tips to go "bat friendly", and how to find the groups in your area that are working to save the little brown bats.
I'm really glad I crossed path with this author and this series. Great scientific non-fiction option for kids 8-12 years old.

Other titles in this series: The case of the vanishing golden frogs (2011) and The case of the vanishing honeybees (2013)

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Bug in a vacuum.

Bug in a Vacuum - Mélanie Watt
by Mélanie Watt

Little, wide-eyed Bug is doing what bugs do: flying around the house, over the food, stepping on the globe, He'd never have guessed what was going to happen... The vacuum cleaner swallowed him! That's definitely something bad! Poor Bug goes then through the five stages of grief. Denial: what a wonderful place he has just found! Bargaining: If the vacuum cleaner lets him go, he will be a totally different, renewed bug. Anger: He wants out right now! Otherwise he will destroy the stupid vacuum cleaner! Despair: Let's face it. He will never go out again... Acceptance: He has to focus in what he has instead in what he has lost, and everything's gonna be all right.
I know! At this point you want to grab a hammer and let Bug free! Thankfully not everything is lost and sooner than later Bug is free and ready for a new start.

This book is SO GOOD! It explains the steps of grief in a clear, honest way without lacking of fun. The illustrations are cute, and they add so much to the reading experience. 5 stars and standing ovation!
Vacuuming will never be the same...

Age range: 5 to 10 years old.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Flora and the Flamingo

Flora and the Flamingo - Molly Idle
by Molly Idle

Flora is so sweet. Flamingo is so elegant.
Flora gets closer to him. She imitates him.
They meet. They agree. They disagree. They communicate in a beautiful danced friendship.
Flora and the Flamingo is different from many picture books I have read. It's simple and beautiful. Wordless, the story is told through the body language of this two adorable characters. It made me feel like dancing!

There are two more books in this series: Flora and the penguin (2014), and Flora and the peacocks  (expected publication May 2016). I'm eager to take a look at both of them.

Age range: 4 to 8 years old.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

The great carp escape

Great Carp Escape, The - Irish Beth Maddock
by Irish Beth Maddock
Illustrated by Lucent Ouano

 Beth and Paul don't like carp fish. They are actually a little scared of them. That's why they don't go near the weeping willow anymore.
But one day the carp fish need help. They are trapped and the water level is getting lower and lower. What a challenge for Beth and Paul!
Despite their fear these generous kids, with Dad and neighbors of the area will work together digging a canal to allow the carp fish to escape. How happy everyone was when they finally succeed and the carp fish swam free!
Beautiful message about taking care of all the creatures, even those that aren't "cute". This story is all about sense of responsibility, team work, and concern about the nature.

Age range: 4 to 8 years old.

Visit/contact the author in Twitter and Facebook!

I received this copy from the author through Bostick Communications in exchange for an honest review.

Monday, November 9, 2015

The rabbit ate my Homework

The Rabbit Ate My Homework - Rachel Elizabeth Cole
By Rachel Elizabeth Cole

It all starts when Drew gets upset because his father won't keep his word and go to a bike ride in the woods with him. Drew decides then to go by himself, even he knows he is not suppose to go there alone. He jumps with his bike, even he knows he is not suppose to do so. The obvious happens: the bike's suspension fork  breaks. Ok. He still can get this better. He can tell what happened, apologize, and promise do not do it again. Well... he doesn't. Drew hides his bike in the woods instead.
When the following day they find a little bunny in a box, Libby his younger sister insists in bring it home. Drew explains that their parents would never, ever receive the pet. But Libby knows where Drew's bike is, and why is there, and she threatens him with telling their parents about it if he doesn't help her to hide the bunny. That's how Tiny ends hidden in Drew's closet, peeing everywhere and eating everything he can find. This snow ball will only get bigger until finally ends in a huge avalanche.
This story was totally engaging. The characters are so likable. I loved the author's humor. The pace of the story was perfect. I was glad when finally all this mess ended, and the way it was solved. The message was clearly delivered without being discursive at all. I'm really looking forward to read the next book in he series, The rabbit ate my flip flops.

Age range: 8 to 12 years old.

I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Friday, November 6, 2015

A boy and a jaguar

A Boy and a Jaguar - Alan Rabinowitz, Catia Chien
by Alan Rabinowitz
Illustrations by Cátia Chien

This is the story of Alan, a boy who is a stutterer and struggles to relate with other kids because of that. He only speaks fluently when he whispers to the animals he loves so much. This love for the animals, specially jaguars, will help him to go over his stuttering challenge when he needs to talk to give "a voice" to his beloved suffering friends. He finally feels complete for the first time in his life.
Based on the author experience, this story is about love friendship, respect for the environment, and how seeing our difficulties as gifts help us to move forward.

Age range: 6 to 8 years old.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015


Blizzard - John Rocco
By John Rocco

A few words from the author extracted from the book:

"On Monday, February 6, 1978, New England experienced one of the biggest snowstorms in its history, It snowed for two days, and by the time it stopped, parts of Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and Connecticut were buried under forty inches of snow.(...) The wind was blowing fifty miles an hour and created snowdrifts up to fifteen feet high. Where I grew up in Rhode Island, it took over a week for snowplows to get to our street. This book is based on my experience as a ten-year-old boy in that blizzard and how I got to the store, over a mile from my house, with tennis rackets tied to my feet."

The pictures pushed us into the story. The text made us feel into the book. We wanted to play in the snow. We smelled the hot chocolate. We felt desperate when the snowplows wouldn't show up. We cheered John in his journey, and booed when it was time to come back to school. Highly recommended!

Age range: 4 to 8 years old.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015


Froodle - Antoinette Portis
By: Antoinette Portis

The brown little bird was tired of singing the same old, predictable, boring "peep", so he decided to say something silly.This tiny gesture brought a revolution among the feathered community! Everybody wanted to try a new song. Crow doesn't like at all this innovation. Dove tries to keep the peace. All of them will learn from this experience and the neighborhood will never be the same...

Age range: 4 to 7 years old

Another spectacular book by this author you might be interested in: Wait

Monday, November 2, 2015

The first misadventure.

The Chicken Squad: The First Misadventure - Doreen Cronin
The chicken squad #1
by Doreen Cronin
Illustrated by Kevin Cornell

These chicks are something! Dirt, Sweetie, Poppy and Sugar love to solve mysteries. This time is not the exception. When Tail, the squirrel, comes asking for help, he knows he is in the right place. Unfortunately he is not really good at providing clues about what he saw. Big and scary? Not really helpful. Enormous and frightening? Still useless... This lack of progress would have discouraged anyone, but not the chicken squad.
We loved this book. We loved it because the story is hilarious. We loved it because the characters are funny and adorable. I personally loved it because I totally related to J. J. Tully, the dog, who has the hard work of keeping an eye on these active, unpredictable chicks!

Age range: 6 to 10 years old. (My 6 years old son enjoyed this story that was read aloud to him. He didn't read it by himself)