Picture Book Review: Have I Ever Told You?

Have I Ever Told You? by Shani King
Have I Ever Told You? 
by Shani King, Anna Horvath (Illustrations)

3 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

This picture book reminds each child that they are loved, that it’s okay to ask questions, that it’s important to do the right thing, and that they should always be respectful and kind.

I loved the text of this book, with its insightful statements about being inclusive and kind, about honest communication, and especially about love and family. It reminds the reader that it’s important to talk about the important things, and make sure that every child feels safe and loved and heard. I think this book will open good dialogue between children and adults, and provide opportunities for “teaching moments”, or maybe just provide a chance to listen to a child and hear what they want to say.

However, I did not always love the artwork.

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Book Review: Strange Lives of Venomous Sea Creatures

Don't Mess With Me by Paul Erickson
Don’t Mess With Me: The Strange Lives of Venomous Sea Creatures 
by Paul EricksonAndrew Martinez (Photographs)

3 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

This book tells all about the venomous creatures of the sea, with beautiful photographs of each type of fish, coral, and worm. Each page has wonderful explanations of how the creatures feed on their prey, how they deliver their venom to their victims, and how they protect themselves from other predators.

The information is interesting and memorable, but uses many big words and technical terms that children might find too heavy for enjoyable reading.
I loved the colorful photographs, and curious facts about each animal, and I found it very informative and impressive.  Continue reading

Picture Book Review: Miss Pinkeltink’s Purse

Miss Pinkeltink's Purse by Patty Brozo
Miss Pinkeltink’s Purse 
by Patty BrozoAna Ochoa (Illustrations)

5 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

Miss Pinkeltink is homeless, and she carries around a massive purse full of random stuff. Sometimes she knocks things over with her enormous purse, and the townspeople complain that she has run over their roses with her purse, or knocked down their fence, or bumped children off their bikes.

But Miss Pinketink has a good heart, and she shares the stuff from her purse with the townspeople. She gives out a roll of tape to fix a flat bike tire, or a comb to a bald man, a bone to a cat, and a plunger to a car mechanic with hilarious results!

A little girl named Zoey recognizes that Miss Pinkeltink’s heart is in the right place, even if her gifts are not always the most useful things. Zoey organizes the townspeople to provide a home for Miss Pinkeltink, and show their appreciation for all her gifts to them!
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Book Review: Ultimate Predator-pedia

Ultimate Predatorpedia by Christina Wilsdon
Ultimate Predatorpedia: The Most Complete Predator Reference Ever 
by Christina Wilsdon

5 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

Everything you ever wanted to know about every kind of predator is in this book! With categories that talk about each type of animal, sections that address fangs, claws, wings, and special pages for endangered animals, this book answers every question you might have about these incredible animals.

Beautiful photos of predators in action really bring the book to life, and give a strong impression of the life these animals live in the wild. I could just stare at these photos for hours. Every page is so colorful and full of movement.

There are big sections for predatory mammals, birds, reptiles, fish, and a strange array of predatory invertebrates like squid, scorpions, spiders, and ants. I really like how the book is organized, and all the great information about each animal. There are also several pages that tell the reader how they can help conservation efforts to preserve endangered species, and how predators help their ecosystems from getting out of balance.

There is also a glossary at the back to help the reader with large words, and a list of websites, movies, and places to visit to find out more!
This book will spark the curiosity of any child or teen, and is a wonderful reference for all the knowledge you’ll need about the world of predators.

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

Non-fiction Review: Why Not?

National Geographic Kids Why Not? by Crispin Boyer
National Geographic Kids Why Not?: Over 1,111 Answers to Everything 
by Crispin Boyer

5 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

This colorful book explores questions like “Why isn’t the sky orange instead of blue?”, “Why don’t animals need to brush their teeth?” and “Why doesn’t the moon have a name?”.
With a thousand detailed and interesting answers to every weird question you never thought to ask, this book is full of strange and weird facts about animals, space, biology, geology, technology, and many other subjects.
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Non-Fiction Revew: Weird But True! 10

Weird But True 10 by National Geographic Kids
Weird But True 10 
by National Geographic Kids

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

This interesting book combines colorful illustrations and photos with tid-bits of weird information about history, science, biology, culture, animal life, and a million other subjects!

I read through the entire book in just a half hour, fascinated with every wacky statement and attracted to each page by the stunning photos. I learned so many freaky things, like that jellyfish used to have hard shells, there is an albino humpback whale off the coast of Australia, and that it’s against the law in the USA for donkeys to sleep in bathtubs! haha! Weird and random and hilarious! Continue reading

Picture Book Review: Mother Earth’s Lullaby

Mother Earth's Lullaby by Terry Pierce
Mother Earth’s Lullaby: A Song for Endangered Animals 
by Terry Pierce (Author), Carol Hyer (Illustrations)

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

This bedtime story shows various endangered animals and their babies/chicks/cubs settling down for the night, and snuggling in, ready for sleep. Each animal is shown in their native habitat and briefly described in rhyme.
The beautiful illustrations are delicate and cozy with soft colors and little details in the background. It’s the perfect book for reading before bed with little ones! Continue reading

Picture Book Review: If DaVinci Painted a Dinosaur

If da Vinci Painted a Dinosaur by Amy Newbold
If da Vinci Painted a Dinosaur 
by Amy Newbold (Author), Greg Newbold (Illustrations)

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

This hilarious book poses the question, What would it look like if various famous artists had painted dinosaurs? The results are dancing ballerina dinosaurs in the style of Degas, Dino Noodle Soup a la Andy Warhol, a Frida Kahlo dinosaur, dinos in Mary Cassatt’s garden, jazz band dinosaurs in Aaron Douglas’ style, and of course, the incomparable Dino Mona Lisa!

Throughout the story, a little hamster/gerbil artist appears on each page with a paintbrush, chalk, crayon, or scissors in hand… um… paw. He guides us through the various art styles, and discovers a new friend at the end of the book. His expressions are so cute, and he adds a little flair to the story!
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Picture Book Review: Monster, Monster, Who Are You?

Monster, Monster, Who Are You? by Alexander Vanags
Monster, Monster, Who Are You? 
by Alexander Vanags, Nina Gvozdeva (Illustrator)

3 out of 5 stars on GoodReads
This adorable book introduces a whole group of monsters, each with their own unique look and their own favorite hobby. On each page, we ask the monster, “Who are you?” and they respond in rhyme to tell us about their wings or their tail or fur, and something that they are doing. Continue reading

Picture Book Review: Three Wild Pigs

Three Wild Pigs by Lisa Anne Cullen
Three Wild Pigs: A Carolina Folktale 
by Lisa Anne Cullen (Goodreads Author)

3 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

The three wild pigs are fishing in their boat off the Carolina coast, when a hurricane begins to blow in from the sea. They scramble back to shore and hunker down in their homes of dune-grass, thicket branches, and strong conch shells. The voice of a wolf is heard on the winds of the storm, as the wolf-winds try to blow down the homes of the pigs. Together, they survive the hurricane winds and the rising waves, despite the howling wolf-winds.

I liked the story of these three wild pigs! There is a lovely fluidity to the pacing, and there are lots of little details that make the narrative special.
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