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Three Little Pigs and The Good Wolf by Avery Smart (Book Review)

In this charming retelling of the classic tale, “The Three Little Pigs and The Good Wolf” the author weaves a delightful narrative filled with whimsy, humor, and unexpected twists. The three little pigs, each with their distinct personalities, set out to build their homes, unaware of the lurking danger posed by the big ‘bad’ wolf.

As the story unfolds, readers are treated to a heartwarming journey of friendship, resilience, and the realization that sometimes, appearances can be deceiving. The author infuses the narrative with valuable life lessons, emphasizing the importance of not judging others based on preconceived notions. The unexpected alliance between the pigs and the wolf adds a unique and refreshing twist to the familiar fable, making this book a captivating read.

The storytelling is complemented by vibrant illustrations that bring the characters and their world to life. The author’s vivid descriptions and engaging dialogue capture the imagination, making it an ideal bedtime or classroom read. Beyond the surface-level narrative, the book encourages readers to reflect on themes of empathy, kindness, and the potential for unlikely friendships. It’s a must-read for those seeking a fresh perspective on a beloved classic.

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I received a complimentary copy of this book from Reedsy Discovery.  I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.

 

Most of us know the classic children’s story The Three Little Pigs. In it, the wolf intentionally blows down the piglets’ homes made of straw and sticks and attempts to knock down the brick house as well. The famous wolf is labeled a villain for good reason. Readers will be introduced to a more thoughtful animal in Three Little Pigs and The Good Wolf. Children will discover this wolf is a sweet, caring canine, not a scary beast. 

This story contains some elements that the original fable possessed. Three pigs do go off to build their homes from the same materials found in the famed edition. A wolf goes to each home and asks to come inside. However, this wolf didn’t huff, puff, and knock down their homes with sinister intentions. He did not want to make them his late-night snack. Yes, he accidentally dismantled the straw and stick home. He tried to extinguish a fire, not cause the straw structure to fall. The stick home tumbled down, too, but again, the wolf didn’t have food on the brain. No, he had an important story and item to share! 

The three little pigs judged the wolf by his outward appearance. They reacted based on old fairytales and didn’t think twice about giving the wolf the benefit of the doubt. They were filled with shame once they realized the error in their ways. This was not an angry, hungry beast wanting to satisfy his hunger; it was just a friendly animal trying to do the right thing. The wolf found something that didn’t belong to him and wanted to return it to its rightful owner: the three pigs’ grandma. 

This story teaches valuable lessons. One, don’t judge a book by its cover. Second, friends come in all sizes, colors, and forms. Lastly, don’t be quick to dismiss someone. Listen and be kind. 

The artwork was out of this world! I can’t rave enough about it. The artist did a masterful job updating the piggies’ look from the famed story we’ve grown accustomed to. I loved how expressive their faces became, especially when the wolf came knockin’, or the oinkers went a runnin’. The artist didn’t stop with the three little pigs; they painted many emotions on the wolf’s face, showing a softer and friendlier side of the famous, menacing, canine breed. While I loved the illustrator’s skill, the text sometimes became muddled. On occasion, the background overpowered the text in the foreground. Despite that, I highly recommend sharing this story with your family or class!  

Amazon’s recommended reading age is baby-5 years. I would change that scale to 2-6 year olds. 

 

Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤❤

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Meet the Author

Avery Smart, a vibrant author who resides in the heart of the lively family chaos with her three energetic kids. Nestled in the midst of parenting, she channels her passion for nurturing well-mannered children into delightful tales.

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Pookie and Tushka Find a Little Piano – 20th Anniversary Edition (Icelands) by Jorge Tello Aliaga (Book Review)

Over 1 million downloads and 5 Years in the Top Ten

Pookie and Tushka are back! Meet Pookie and Tushka, the proud winners of the “BEST NEW CHILDREN’S BOOK OF THE YEAR” award, with this heartwarming story.

A frozen little piano arrives on the shores of the Icelands, bringing Pookie the penguin and Tushka the polar bear an abundance of fun, excitement, and a valuable lesson about the essence of friendship.

This enchanting tale also includes educational facts about penguins, polar bears, Antarctica, and the Arctic.

Don’t miss out on “Pookie’s Song” by Jorge! Listen at Icelands.com and on popular platforms such as Spotify, Amazon, Apple, YouTube, and more!”

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20th Anniversary Edition includes:
• “Pookie’s Song” lyric video.
• New character profiles
• Deleted pages
• Sketches and work in progress
• 15 page preview of “Pookie and Tushka Become Friends”
• A letter from the author
And much, much more!

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(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 

 

Pookie and Tushka are back and celebrating twenty years of bringing joy to kids worldwide. Including in this edition, kids will enjoy bonus material such as new character profiles, deleted scenes, and a 15-page preview of Pookie and Tushka Become Friends. First, let me share my thoughts on today’s featured title, Pookie and Tushka Find a Little Piano.

 

Pookie, the penguin, loves to sing. Happy or sad, he let the words pour out. To his dismay, his songs carry so much ache. One day, while hanging out with his new friend Tushka, the polar bear, they spot a little blue piano in the sea. Pookie was excited to play the piano and happy songs for his best buddy. He tried with all his might, but only sad tunes surfaced. The little bear also tried to make music but failed as well. In his defense, he didn’t know what a piano was until Pookie informed him. That didn’t matter to the sweet bear; he was devastated he couldn’t play the piano and erupted in big tears. 

 

Pookie was more concerned for his friend’s feelings than his own. Determined to lift Tushka’s spirits, the penguin had a great idea: a wonderful gift for the small polar bear. Tushka discovered that playing the drum required practice, and Pookie found the key to playing happy tunes. (No spoilers. Read the story!)

 

Pookie and Tushka Find a Little Piano teaches children valuable lessons. 

1.) To be good at something requires practice. Yes, you’ll make mistakes, but you grow through these mistakes. Have patience, and keep trying!

2.) Thinking of ourselves is easy, but sometimes we must put others first. Helping others may be the ticket to your problem and lift your spirits. 

3.) Always be nice and ready to help your friends! 

 

I loved reading Pookie and Tushka’s adventure with the little blue piano. Tushka once again amused me with his vivid imagination. I would also be worried about a monster fish in the frigid waters, but a monster piano…hmm, not so much. The bear’s overboard response to everything touched my heart. After reading two books by Jorge, I can see why their series has been downloaded over a million times. These two will warm your heart and make you smile.

 

Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤

Amazon Purchase Link

 

 

Meet the Author

Jorge (or Jorge Antonio Tello Aliaga for short) is a writer and illustrator born and raised in Lima, Perú. He has created books, toys, and apps that have received several awards including a “Children’s Book of the Year” award. His experience includes having worked for Apple, Adobe, Cisco and Oracle.

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When Pookie Met Tushka by Jorge Tello Aliaga (Book Review)

Over 1 million downloads and 5 Years in the Top Ten – Pookie and Tushka are back!


* Features gorgeous watercolor illustrations and educational facts about penguins and polar bears.*

The famous penguin who played piano and his best polar bear friend are back. Literally, millions of children have grown up following Pookie and Tushka but not many know how their story began.

Finally, this story is told in “When Pookie Met Tushka – A Cool Tale of Polar Friendship”: Pookie, a penguin with big dreams, journeys to the magical Icelands, where an unexpected friendship with Tushka, a young polar bear, helps them conquer challenges and uncover the essence of true friendship.

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I received a complimentary copy of this book from Reedsy Discovery.  I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.

 

In the wild, polar bears and penguins live in two different locations. Penguins live in the Antarctic (to the south), while polar bears call the Arctic (to the north) home. Their paths only cross in the fictional world, like in When Pookie Met Tushka. Pookie, a small penguin, wanted to become a great musician and bring joy to the world through his music. Where he lived, though, nobody seemed to understand his dream. Therefore, he decided to travel to Iceland, hoping to discover like-minded, creative animals. Pookie had the love and support of his family, which many people don’t have. He was one lucky penguin!

When Pookie arrived at his destination, things didn’t go as planned. An avalanche tossed him around; he lost his belongings in the mound of snow and felt defeated. That’s when his luck would change. I loved how the main character’s dialogue was in a particular color, so readers could always infer who was speaking. Pookie’s was in bright blue, and Tushka’s was in orange. Even Pookie’s mom had their own assigned dialogue color! Too bad Pookie’s father didn’t. It was bolded bright blue. Still, the others were a brilliant design idea!

Pookie left hoping to share his musical talents but found a friend in the new, strange land instead. He educated the young polar bear pup on what a penguin was and made the bear’s tears vanish over the disappearing stars. The bear helped the flightless bird with a poor sniffer find his belongings. Their kindness and helpfulness to one another created an instant bond, and a friendship blossomed between two unlikely pairings.

The book teaches children that friendship comes in all shapes, sizes, and colors. It promotes being kind and helpful to others, which is always a valuable lesson for young kids. After the story, there is also an avalanche of cool penguin and polar facts. I’m sure everyone will learn a thing or two in this section; I sure did!

I hope Pookie’s musical dream eventually comes true! I bet others will too!

I recommend the book to children 2-8.


Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤1/2

Amazon Purchase Link

 

 

Meet the Author

Jorge (or Jorge Antonio Tello Aliaga for short) is a writer and illustrator born and raised in Lima, Perú. He has created books, toys, and apps that have received several awards including a “Children’s Book of the Year” award. His experience includes having worked for Apple, Adobe, Cisco and Oracle.

Reedsy Author Link

 

 

 

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The Unique Little Bear by Debi K Fraser (Book Review)

Seeing the joy in being completely unique.

“Why is their growl so loud, and scary and strong?

But mine is so quiet – is my growl wrong?”

 

Little Bear is beginning to notice that he is different from the other bears, and he has decided to ask mummy bear why.

Using engaging rhyme and endearing illustrations, The Unique Little Bear takes the reader on a gentle discovery and celebration of the uniqueness of every individual, and encourages us all to do the same.

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I received a complimentary copy of this book from Reedsy Discovery. I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.

 

According to the Oxford Dictionary, the meaning of unique is “being the only one of its kind; very special or unusual.” Merriam-Webster lists unique as “being without a like or equal.” Whether it’s your fashion choices, personality, hairstyle, special skill, body shape, birthmark, or so on, we all possess something that makes us stand out from everyone else. Makes us … unique.

Little bear noticed he didn’t look exactly like the other bears. His fur was golden-red instead of brown. His growl didn’t reach the same depths and volume as other bears. Even his paws weren’t as mighty as theirs. Being “different” bothered the small animal, much like it does for many of us. We want to fit in, sometimes meaning we try to act or look like others. 

Every day, humans are mocked, teased, shunned, or made feel less than because of something deemed strange. That causes negative feelings about ourselves, squashes our self-esteem, and can cause people to isolate themselves from gatherings or friendships. This adorable children’s book helps children understand that we all have characteristics or skills that set us apart from one another. We should never be embarrassed, sad, or ashamed about what’s different about ourselves but, instead, love and embrace what makes us special. 

Mummy bear said it best when she tried to comfort her son with the fact we are all different from our eyes to our ears, from our fur to our feet. Substitute hair for feet, and that applies to humans. 

I loved everything about this book. The illustrations were spectacular. I was thrilled to see the animals were shaded in unorthodox colors, making each one unique and staying on target with the general theme of the story. And promoting positive body image and self-love is always a plus in my book! 

Share The Unique Little Bear with your children and teach them to love themselves from head to toe, inside and out. 

 

Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤

Amazon Purchase Link

 

 

Meet the Author

My love of stories and the characters that inhabit them has been with me forever. As a child I could often be found with a plate of cucumber sandwiches and a pile of books about dragons, witches and magical adventures. Stories are brewing in my head constantly. 

Reedsy Author Link

 

 

Happy Holidays

 

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Ozzy Ox: Moody Morning by Callen Kropp (Book Review)

When was the last time you woke up on the wrong side of bed? In Ozzy Ox: Moody Morning, Ozzy Ox finds it’s not the best way to start out his day. In this second title in the Ozzy Ox series of children’s picture books, the young ox grumpily greets the morning with some choice words for his feline friend.

Finn Cat’s raucous response is a screech heard around the Land of Ox, summoning a startled menagerie of cagey neighbors hoping to help bring peace back to the community. 

But their good intentions clamorously fall apart, and Ozzy is soon in disbelief how quickly the neighborhood comes together while the day falls apart. Is he able to address the consequences of his moody morning? Ozzy Ox: Moody Morning resonates with a powerful message: that words and friendships matter!

Ozzy Ox: Moody Morning, by Callen Kropp, is one of four books in the Ozzy Ox series.  It is a 42-page rhyming picture book for children ages 3-8 that warmly embraces children and encourages them to make better choices. It shows children that acceptance and forgiveness are more likely when they admit their mistakes.

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I received a complimentary copy of this book from Reedsy Discovery.  I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.

 

We’ve all woke up on the wrong side of the bed. We may be dreading the first day back to school or work. Perhaps we didn’t sleep well or were feeling under the weather. Ozzy Ox woke up moody and didn’t waste a moment unleashing his crabbiness onto others. He screeched at Finn, scaring the cat to death and possibly knocking away one of his nine lives. Finn’s frightened, hair-rising illustrations were funny. His twitchy, spasming pose had me in stitches! 

Things turn disastrous when a cow jumps through the window and enters the house with the frame stuck around his head. More barnyard friends came to the rescue, only to make matters worse. The front door flew off its hinges, thanks to two horses! The drama-filled day is no fun for the animals, but kids will laugh loudly at the crazy scenes. Three cheers to the storyline (writer: Callen Kropp) and artwork (artist: Emily Hagen)! 

A steady stream of calamity befell the animals in the story, and Ozzy Ox realized everything started when he yelled at his friend. That show of anger caused a ripple event of fear and destruction. In the end, Ozzy realizes how his words and actions affect others. He vows, “To choose the words that launch each day In a much brighter, lighter way!”

Ozzy Oz learned several valuable lessons in Ozzy Ox: Moody Morning. One, treat others how you want to be treated. Two, choose your words carefully and realize how your words and actions might affect the day. Third, friends help friends in need. 

No one can be happy 24-7, 365 days a year; however, we can teach our children to think before they speak and treat others with kindness. Make better choices! 

I recommend the humorous, slightly under 40-page storybook to children ages 3-8. 

Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤❤❤

Amazon Purchase Link

 

 

Meet the Author

Callen Kropp is a North Dakota author whose family has raised bison for decades.  After a career in corporate communications, she pursued her lifelong dream of writing books.  Adventures with her family, including children and grandchildren, provide inspiration for her Ozzy Ox picture book series.

Reedsy Author Link

 

 

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