Book Review: Mudshark

Mudshark by Gary Paulsen

Mudshark
by Gary Paulsen

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

Mudshark is the smartest kid in school, finding lost objects and solving mysteries for his classmates and teachers. When a psychic parrot takes up residence in the school library, Mudshark’s detective agency is threatened, and he’ll do anything to outsmart that talking bird. Between stolen chalkboard erasers, a missing gerbil, and a toxic situation in the faculty restrooms, Mudshark will have to think and scheme and plan to save his school!

Continue reading

Book Review: Jonathan Livingston Seagull

Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach

Jonathan Livingston Seagull
by Richard Bach (Goodreads Author), Russell Munson (Photographer) 

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

Young Jonathan is a seagull who longs to unravel the secrets of flight, but the other seagulls only care about simple basic flight, enough to get them to food and shelter. Jonathan is banished from his flock for practicing and perfecting aerial tricks, high speed turns, and low-level glides. He finds a higher purpose in his love of flying, but the other birds don’t understand his obsession with flight. 

Continue reading

Book Review: John Winthrop, Oliver Cromwell, and the Land of Promise

John Winthrop, Oliver Cromwell, and the Land of Promise by Marc Aronson

John Winthrop, Oliver Cromwell, and the Land of Promise
by Marc Aronson 

3 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

This book explores the connections between two historical figures, John Winthrop and Oliver Cromwell, as both attempt to establish a new order in their respective lands, America and England.
John Winthrop based his new colony on the idea that God was guiding the Puritans’ community to a righteous way of life. Oliver Cromwell believed that God was guiding his army to purge England of the old evil ways and establish a better government for the British people.

Continue reading

Book Review: The Joy of Less

The Joy of Less by Francine Jay

The Joy of Less: A Minimalist Guide to Declutter, Organize, and Simplify
by Francine Jay
K

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

This book is perfect for those who are curious about minimalism and want to declutter their homes and try it out. I love that the author emphasizes that minimalism is a mind-set and a life-style, not an aesthetic or a decorating trend. It’s not about how your home looks; it’s about how you feel in your home. It’s not about having a set number of belongings; it’s about having the right number of items that belong in your life for a reason.

I find the philosophy similar to the KonMari method of decluttering. Every item must have a purpose, whether it is useful or brings beauty into your life or just makes you happy.

This book takes you room by room, and gives common-sense advice on decluttering each space, how to get rid of things you don’t need or want, how to store what is left, and how to keep more clutter from building up again. 

There is also a chapter all about how to get your family involved in decluttering the house and keeping it tidy. 

I really enjoyed reading this book, and it inspired me to do a mini-decluttering session in my closet! (My house is already pretty minimal, but my clothing needed some pruning.)

I would recommend this book to anyone who isn’t sure about minimalism, or who hates minimalism but just wants to declutter and find more space in their home. This book might change your mind about minimalism and what it really stands for!

Comic Review: Book Love

Book Love by Debbie Tung
Book Love 
by Debbie Tung

5 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


A witty comic about what it means to be a reader and book lover. With whimsical scenarios and a relatable main character, this comic explores the every day lives of those unique people obsessed with reading.

The artwork is clean and simple, but appealing and very expressive. I love that some of the pages are funny comics about being a reader, and some of them are a little more serious about how magical it is to get lost in a book.

From those frustrating things like stickers on a book cover that drive readers crazy, all the way to the delight of connecting with other readers over a shared love of books, this comic encompasses all the aspects of a reading life and what makes readers so special.

I loved every page! I would love to see more comics from this author/artist!

Disclaimer: I received an ecopy of this book from the publisher in exchange for a free and honest review. All the opinions stated here are my own true thoughts, and are not influenced by anyone.

Book Review: IS Underground

Is Underground by Joan Aiken
Is Underground (The Wolves Chronicles, #8) 
by Joan Aiken

5 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


I love this 8th book in the Willoughby Chase series! Dido’s little sister, Is, vows to find her long-lost cousin, and ends up looking for a missing prince too. All the children in London are being snatched up and sent to “Playland”, where they are promised treats and games and fun. But the horrible reality is a dark mine where they are forced to work as slaves, and Is has to go underground to continue her search. Is gets unexpected help from some unique and interesting characters, but it is only her fierce determination and street-smarts that will save her cousin and the other children from the horrors of the mines.
Continue reading

Book Review: A Hobbit, a Wardrobe, and a Great War

A Hobbit, a Wardrobe, and a Great War by Joseph Loconte
A Hobbit, a Wardrobe, and a Great War: How J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis Rediscovered Faith, Friendship, and Heroism in the Cataclysm of 1914-18 
by Joseph Loconte

I thoroughly enjoyed this book about the effect that WWI had on two of my favorite authors, how their experiences translated into the stories they wrote, and how their faith in God was strengthened and established despite the horrors of war.

This is heartbreaking to read, because it gives such detailed personal accounts of the war, the suffering and fear they went through, and the terrible losses of friends and family. But it is also wonderfully interesting to learn about the history of that time, and the misguided Utopian philosophies that were shattered by the war.

I was impressed with the scholarly yet accessible writing style, and the way in which the historical and personal information was organized and presented in each chapter. This clearly explained how Tolkien’s and Lewis’ personal experiences were entwined in the larger story of the war, and the popular philosophies and political thinking of the time.

Picture Book Review: The Awkward Owl

The Awkward Owl
The Awkward Owl by Shawnda Blake

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Adorable children’s book with lovely pictures, about an awkward owl who doesn’t have the confidence to fly well until a little girl shows some love and believes in him! I love the cute artwork and the sweet little story about believing in yourself. It’s really funny too, because the owl goes crashing into things sometimes!

View all my reviews