Picture Book Review: We Love Babies!

We Love Babies! by Jill Esbaum
We Love Babies!
by Jill Esbaum,  National Geographic Society 

5 out of 5 stars

This adorable picture book features dozens of baby animals from familiar species like the Elephant and Rabbit, to strange species like the Long-Eared Jerboa and the Serval. The photographs of these cute little babies are colorful and sweet! There are tiny cartoon characters drawn into the corners of the pages who cheer for the babies.

The text describes all the things we love about animal babies, their soft fur, their stripes, and fins. Their hooves, and paws. Their snuffles and snorts, their squawks and peeps. “Big or tiny, fast or slow” we definitely love animal babies!

Photographs of the animal babies are placed in a colorful background design that is sure to capture the attention of little readers.

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Non Fiction Review: Harriet Tubman

Harriet Tubman by Barbara Kramer
Harriet Tubman
by Barbara Kramer

5 out of 5 stars


Harriet Tubman was born as a slave and escaped to freedom. She worked tirelessly to free other slaves and even served as a spy during the American Civil War. She is best known for her work as a “conductor,” guiding slaves to freedom through the “Underground Railroad,” a series of safe houses called “stations” that allowed slaves to travel undetected to the Northern United States and Canada.

I loved the simple writing style, easy for a beginner to understand. There are fact boxes in the corners that explain the meanings of words, and give direct quotes from Tubman. Continue reading

Non-Fiction Review: Susan B. Anthony

National Geographic Readers by Kitson Jazynka
National Geographic Readers: Susan B. Anthony
by Kitson Jazynka

5 out of 5 stars

Susan B. Anthony worked tirelessly to secure votes and liberty for women in the United States. This book gives an overview of her life and her work, with explanations about petitions, laws, newspaper articles, and how these things influenced Anthony’s work. There is also interesting information about clothing styles, employment, habits, and how people lived in at the turn of the century.

I loved the simple writing style, easy for a beginner to understand. There are sections for an adult to read aloud, and then a smaller section with easier words and larger font for the child to read. It’s a great way to teach a child new words, and get them involved in reading together!

The colorful design and old-timey photos captured my attention. There are also activities and questions that get the reader engaged and make them think carefully about the ideas in the book. I appreciated how thoughtful the questions are and how much goes into the design! Continue reading

Non Fiction Review: Men’s Prayer Journal

Mens Prayer Journal by Romal Tune
Mens Prayer Journal: A Place for Reflection, Praise, & Thanks
by Romal Tune

5 out of 5 stars


This simple journal is the perfect companion to a daily prayer time, with plenty of room for writing in thoughts or prayers, and a Scripture verse at the bottom of each page.

I like that there is NO introduction telling you how to pray, or how to use the book, or some long personal story about the author’s prayer journey. There are NO journal prompts or condescending “uplifting” stories about Christian life. It’s just blank pages ready for writing and a verse to inspire you. The simplicity of it is perfect!
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Non Fiction Review: Essential Chakra Yoga

Essential Chakra Yoga by Christina D'Arrigo
Essential Chakra Yoga: Poses to Balance, Heal, and Energize the Body and Mind
by Christina D’Arrigo

5 out of 5 stars


This book guides the reader through an incredible journey using yoga to balance the energy in the body known as chakras. The first chapters give an overview of the seven main chakras, and how they affect your physical, mental, and emotional health. Each chakra overview includes positive affirmations about the area of life that corresponds to that chakra, such as emotions for the heart chakra, or expressing yourself with the throat chakra.
Then there are yoga poses, illustrated with simple drawings, that activate and clear each chakra for a smooth flow of energy throughout the body. Continue reading

Non-Fiction Review: The Fascinating Animal Book

The Fascinating Animal Book for Kids by Ginjer Clarke
The Fascinating Animal Book for Kids: 500 Wild Facts!
by Ginjer Clarke

5 out of 5 stars


Divided into chapters for mammals, insects, fish, reptiles, amphibians, and birds, this book gives amazing facts and information about each animal. Did you know that male lions will often sleep for 20 hours a day? Did you know that fireflies can speak to each other through the patterns of flashing lights? And that the smallest bird in the world is the bee hummingbird, which is only 2 inches long?

Every page is covered with beautiful photographs of animals in the wild. Each photo is vibrant and energetic, with the action of racing predators, diving birds, or a busy ant colony.
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Non-Fiction Review: How To Raise a Reader

How to Raise a Reader by Pamela Paul
How to Raise a Reader
by Pamela Paul , Maria Russo

2 out of 5 stars


This book gives advice for encouraging a child to read at every stage of their lives into adulthood. There are guidelines for reading to newborn babies and toddlers, guiding a child to read on their own, encouraging a middle grader or preteen to love reading, and influencing a teenager in their reading choices. There are chapters for each age group with suggestions on when to let a child explore books on their own, and when to step in with a subtle influence and inspire them to read.

There were some things that I liked about this book. The writing style is good, but a little pretentious in places. The authors write as if they know everything there is to know about parenting, reading, and which books are best.
They criticized some of my favorite childhood books as being too “preachy” and “moral”, so right away they lost my respect for their opinions. They would have done better to be more accepting of different tastes in books, instead of being so quick to judge certain books as “boring” or unappealing to children. Well, those books were appealing to me when I was a child, and they are STILL my favorites! Continue reading

Non Fiction Review: The Path to Positivity

The Path to Positivity by Caitlin Margaret
The Path to Positivity: Proven Positive Thinking Techniques for Getting Motivated and Living Your Best Life
by Caitlin Margaret

4 out of 5 stars


This book gives clear and practical steps for changing your mindset and changing your thoughts, emotions, and behavior to live a better life. There are techniques for dealing with fear, anxiety, negative people, and past hurts that influence your current experiences.

I really loved the intelligent writing style that breaks down complex ideas into small manageable pieces. Each section has actionable questions you can ask yourself to identify where you need to make changes and celebrate the things you are already doing well. Continue reading

Book Review: Goddess Power

Goddess Power by Yung In Chae  PhD
Goddess Power: A Kids’ Book of Greek and Roman Mythology: 10 Empowering Tales of Legendary Women
by Yung In Chae PhD

4 out of 5 stars


These tales of Greek gods are rewritten and simplified for children, giving a broad overview of the legends that made Greek and Roman myths famous throughout the world. The stories of both Greeks and Romans are combined, instead of being told twice with different names.

The stories include the legends of Gaia, Rhea, Hera, Artemis, the Fates, Demeter, Athena, the Muses, Aphrodite, and Circe. Of course, the male gods and heroes are included as part of the stories too, but the main focus is on the ladies. Continue reading

Non Fiction Review: Popcorn Prayer Journal

Popcorn Prayer Journal by Barry Adams
Popcorn Prayer Journal: For Quick Prayers, Praise, and Thanks
by Barry Adams

5 out of 5 stars


This book begins with an inspiring introduction about prayer, types of prayer, and Scripture verses regarding prayer. Whether it is gratitude, petition, intercession for others, praise, confession, or just simple communion with God, this book has a place for every prayer that is on your heart.

Each page has a place for writing a few short lines of prayer, with prompts and topics to prayer for each day. The topics include things like “A significant event, Who God is to me, Beautiful things about God, What’s on my heart, My greatest need, and God’s Word to me.” There is even a place to write down answered prayers! Continue reading