Tag Archives: children

The Squirbles and the Messy Room: Another Squirble® Story! by Kate Teves (Book Review)


Could this messy squirble bedroom get any messier? If Percy and Pip aren’t careful, it just might! In this heartwarming Squirble® story, Percy and Pip return to make things right in their very messy room. But when their pet fish and pet cat suggest a shortcut, things might just get a lot… worse. Will the brothers have the strength and the focus to make things right?

This playful book is told in breezy rhyme that will delight early readers. The cheeky humor of this squirble family will make little children, big children, and parents laugh together. And what child doesn’t love listening to their parents’ friendly giggles? This is the kind of book that parents and kids both love.

Written and illustrated by Kate Teves from her studio in South Florida, this book radiates with life and color.

Amazon Purchase Link

 

 

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

 

My first impression, the cover will make your child smile at the unique way Percy (character on top bunk) is picking up his stinky sock. Yup, I can only surmise it’s stinky because a sock on the floor in any room is more than likely a stinker. 

Before the story begins, Kate Teves (writer and illustrator) introduces the cast of characters. What a fun-looking crew! My family liked Pip’s goggles and Elaine, the airplane flying fish, the most; however, all the characters were spectacularly drawn. 

The opening segment of The Squirbles and the Messy Room is very relatable to children and adults. Percy and Pip’s parents enter their room, shout about how messy the room is, and demand they clean it up. Yup, that happens every minute of every day in some home, somewhere. As with real life, the fictional parents repeatedly asked them to clean up before they blew up at them. 

Percy and Pip had to tidy up the toys, straighten posters, pick up the clothing, and toss the trash. They had help, though. The cat in a maid outfit carrying a feather duster made me laugh. It’ll make your children laugh too! 

Things were progressing smoothly in the clean-up process until a flying fish (Elaine) and a cat (Bessie) made contact with a ceiling fan. Yes, you read that right. Wacky scenario, but I loved it, and your kid(s) will love it too. The cleaning adventure is 100% AFV material! (That’s America’s Funniest Home Videos.) 

Amazon’s recommended reading age is 2-7, grade level of preschool -2. Kids close to 2 might not understand words like inspection, toiled, and squalor. However, they will love the comical illustrations. 

One final thing, after the cast of characters, there’s an opportunity to scan “robot puke” to discover more Squirble® books + activities! I encourage you to check it out! 

Review submitted to Reedsy on 8/29/22.

 

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

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About the Author

I am a writer and illustrator in South Florida. In 2017, I had an idea for a children’s book, but I did not know how to draw. I started teaching myself the basics, and soon I was just as much in love with illustrating as I was with writing!

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Undercover Elf by Cydnee Brady (Book Review)

The son of an Undercover Elf discovers his mom’s secret job and finds out who her boss is. He learns about all the work Elves do to make sure Santa is ready for his ride on Christmas Eve and is happy to show the world how to identify and Undercover Elf out in the everyday world.

The magic of Christmas through a child’s eyes is one of the greatest joys to watch, and through this tale you and your children will be able to learn more about Santa. Kids can ask some really tough questions about Santa, and as a parent, have you ever been at a loss as to how to answer? Undercover Elf is here to assist with those tricky questions and enhance the excitement of the holiday for you and your child!

Keep the magic going throughout the year by trying to find Undercover Elves out and about in the real world!

 

Amazon Purchase Link

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

 

Moms wear a lot of job hats when managing a household. Depending on what needs handling, they put on their imaginary work hat and get to business. They prepare meals (chef), mend holes or sew costumes (seamstress), tend to boo-boo (doctor/nurse), and help with schoolwork (teacher). They also fix broken gadgets, wash clothes, clean the home, save kids from creepy crawlies, etc. I want to note that fathers also wear a lot of hats in the house, but since this is a book about moms, I want to focus on them. 

Around the holidays, moms put on a special hat. They put on their elf hat and assist Santa in making the holiday goes off without a hitch. Yup, Santa has helpers all around the world, not just in his workshop at the North Pole. 

Cydnee Brady does give clues to help a child discover if the parent is an elf or not. Be ready to have your ears looked at very closely. I think before I share this story with my youngest, I will purchase elf or Vulcan ears. I can’t wait to see their reaction!

Mom, the undercover elf, is Santa’s helper in many ways. They help with family pets, track weather patterns, and much more. With all the work this mom does, I bet she’s always on the NICE list. 

I know children, who still believe in Santa, will love this story. It was so cute. The pictures were quite lovely. 

The illustrations were not cartoony or picture-perfect computer graphics. They reminded me of colored-in coloring sheets. Well done, Chuck Sirko, Noah Spencer, and Mason Spencer (illustration team). 

If the author has any blank coloring sheets available, I would suggest offering those as a promotional piece. 

I agree with Amazon’s recommended reading age, 3 – 5 years.

 

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

Amazon Purchase Link

 

Meet the Author

Children’s book author Cydnee Brady has always had a flair for words. Over the course of her kids’ childhoods, she added layers to an imaginative and festive story about being one of Santa’s elves, adding excited anticipation to his impending arrival—and instantly believed! Once her grandchildren were born, the story spread to a new generation, and now through her newly published picture book, Undercover Elf, to be shared with children everywhere.

Cydnee believes a great children’s book is one that you can get lost in, where you are in another world that you escape to for a time. She hopes that her story gives families together time and brings happiness and joy that reminds them all year around of the magic of Christmas and Santa, long after the book is closed.

When she isn’t writing humorous holiday stories, Cydnee works as a financial analyst for the Volvo Group, enjoys spending time with her three grandchildren, two kids, and husband of thirty-five years, Dean. She likes to sew, cook, and travel. Cydnee and Dean live with their four dogs in the country in Gibsonville, North Carolina. Undercover Elf is her debut picture book.

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Gugulu, The Little Bear Dares by Srividhya Lakshmanan (Book Review)

Go on a wild adventure with Gugulu, the sloth bear, as he takes on a journey deep inside the western ghats of India.

Gugulu’s parents won’t allow him to go to school alone. But he can’t wait to explore the forest on his own. So one day, he runs ahead of his parents. And before he knows it, he ends up in a river filled with danger – first a roaring leopard, then a gang of gaurs, but soon he shrinks in fear. Will naughty Gugulu be able to reunite with his parents?

Gugulu, The Little Bear Dares, is a quirky, funny, beautifully illustrated story about new experiences and courageously facing challenges when encountered.

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 Goodreads Link

 

 

 

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

 

First impressions matter when it comes to books, and Gugulu, The Little Bear Dares by Srividhya Lakshmanan was very eye-catching. Akansha Krishnan knocked it out of the park with their illustrators! The group selfie was adorable. A few times, Gugulu’s nose seemed to get away from the illustrator. For example, the scene where the bear meets the purple frog. 

Gugulu meets many animals during his adventure; the time doesn’t stick close to his parents. Some animals will be familiar to most children: leopard, jaguar, snake, and elephant. There might be some that are not so familiar to many kids: pangolin, Nilgiri flycatcher, and gaur. Srividhya Lakshmanan compiled a reference page with photos, favorite food, trait, and which family it belongs to. You’ll notice on this page there’re insects included. There’s also a fun maze to complete where children can help Gugulu get to school. 

I couldn’t locate a recommended reading age for Gugulu, The Little Bear Dares, when I was writing this review, but I do not think preschoolers or kindergartners will be able to read the story. However, they will enjoy having it read to them. Second and third graders will probably have a better chance at sounding out the animal names. 

 

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

Amazon Purchase Link

 Goodreads Link

 

 

Meet the Author

Srividhya Lakshmanan is an award-winning children’s author, entrepreneur and writer. She always had a passion for storytelling and started to write when she was eleven. ​Her early success came when one of her dramas got selected by the ‘All India Radio’. She spent years reading and writing stories, giving her characters a bright sparkle. ​She spent 15 years in corporate jobs. Later, she founded and managed a fashion e-commerce company, Pink Hippo, before venturing into publishing.

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Grace in Hollywood – A Grace Michelle Mystery by Kari Bovee (Book Review)

GRACE IN HOLLYWOOD (A Grace Michelle Mystery) by Kari Bovee

All that glitters… is sometimes blood. With her golden ticket buried in the ground, can she save a wrongly accused teen from the gallows?

Hollywood, 1924. Promoted to lead costume designer of a star-studded film, Grace Michelle should be on top of the world. But between her husband’s debt, her sister’s recent death, and the troubled teenaged girl she’s fostering, she’s struggling to please everyone and still keep a smile on her face. And when a Tinseltown shindig turns deadly, Grace is horrified to discover her young charge unconscious alongside the director’s grisly corpse.

Determined to prove the girl’s innocence, Grace’s own haunted past fills her sleep with prophetic nightmares. And no sooner has she sought clarity from a medium than a second body lands the scared teenager in the slammer.

Can Grace turn the camera on the real culprit before another victim ends up on the cutting room floor?

Grace in Hollywood is the second book in the riveting A Grace Michelle Mystery historical series. If you like fiercely loyal heroines, thrilling whodunits, and the magic of old cinema, then you’ll love Kari Bovee’s enthralling tale.​

 
BUY THE BOOK:
Amazon
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I received a complimentary copy of this book from iRead Book Tours. I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.
 
 
Grace and Chet have come a long way since Sophia’s death. They now live on a ranch and foster four children of various ages. They did more than open up their homes; they opened up their hearts. 


While in their care, though, tragedy struck. A murder occurred during a Hollywood party, and their oldest charge, Lizzy, is the prime suspect since she was found with the deceased. Lizzy denied responsibility, and Grace believed her. 


The evidence is mounting. Bodies are piling up. Lizzy is losing hope. Grace, however, doesn’t give up. Like with the murder mystery of her sister, Sophia, Grace will turn over every rock to uncover the truth. Through her investigations, she learns some shocking facts. She also finds herself facing the real villain of the story. 
 
Grace in Hollywood – A Grace Michelle Mystery by Kari Bovee is a mystery you WON’T figure out quickly. All the twists and turns will keep you puzzled as to who is the real murderer. 


The last page will have you muttering, “WTH,” or something close to that. I can’t wait to read Grace Among Thieves (A Grace Michelle Mystery), book three in the series. 

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

Author Kari Bovee

When she’s not on a horse riding along the beautiful cottonwood-laden acequias of Corrales, New Mexico; or basking on white sand beaches under the Big Island Hawaiian sun, Kari Bovée is escaping into the past—scheming murder and mayhem for her characters both real and imagined in her historical mystery novels.

Kari Bovée writes the award-winning Annie Oakley mystery series and the Grace Michelle mystery series. In 2020 she was honored with First Place in category for the Chanticleer International Clue Awards for her book Folly at the Fair. In 2019 she was awarded the NM/AZ Book Awards Hillerman Award for her novel Girl with a Gun. The novel also received First Place in the 2019 NM/AZ Book Awards in the Mystery/Crime category, and won First in Category in the International Chanticleer Murder & Mayhem Awards. It was also a finalist in the 2019 Next Generation Indie Awards. Her novel Grace in the Wings won First in Category for the 2019 International Chanticleer Chatelaine Awards. Peccadillo at the Palace won Grand Prize in the 2019 Goethe Awards, and was a finalist in the 2019 Best Book Awards Historical Fiction category.

Kari Bovée has worked as a technical writer for a Fortune 500 Company, has written non-fiction for magazines and newsletters, and has worked in the education field as a teacher and educational consultant.

 

Connect with the author:  
Website ~ Goodreads ~ Facebook ~ Twitter ~ Instagram Pinterest

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Mother’s Love: Animal moms and their babies by Diana Aleksandrova (Book Review)

MOTHER'S LOVE by Diana Aleksandrova

 
A mother’s love is like the air;
you may not see it, but it’s there.
 
A mother’s love is universal; and yet the way each species shows its love is unique.
 
In a cloud, I’ll build a nest.
For you, I want the very best.  
My love is fierce and very bright.
It makes the world feel safe and right.       
 
Mother’s Love is a lyrical celebration of the unconditional bond every mother has with her child. Written from the point of view of ten different animal moms, ranging from elephants to eagles it depicts the various sides of motherhood, including joy, resilience, and sacrifice.
 
 
 
Buy the Book:
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I received a complimentary copy of this book from iRead Book Tours. I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.
 
 
First and foremost, I would like to praise Svilen Dimitrov’s illustrations. They were absolutely precious. Svilen made animals that we wouldn’t consider cute very adorable. For example, the momma and baby bat hanging side by side from a tree branch. Also, the color choices for each page complemented the animals they accompanied beautifully—all in all, lovely artistic design. 


Diana Aleksandrova’s story was sweet. She shows readers how mothers love and take care of their babies. For non-readers, this book will help teach or reinforce animals’ names. For young readers, the text is simple enough most they won’t have too much trouble reading this book alone. 


Even though Mother’s Love was designed for younger readers, I enjoyed the “Did You Know” section very much. I didn’t know every fact about octopuses, so thank you for teaching this “old” lady something new. 🙂


My daughter knew most of the facts about the animals, but she said that’s because they had a lesson over them in school. Plus, she loves learning facts about animals. She’s a bookworm. 🙂


No matter what reading level your child is at, I think they’ll fall in love with the animals, the cute babies, dialogue, and bonus material. 


Happy reading! 

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

Meet the Author:
Author Diana Aleksandrova

 
Born and raised in Bulgaria, Diana Aleksandrova moved across the ocean in pursuit of the American dream, only to realize that her dream was not limited to any one country, or even continent. Rather, it was within her all along.
Diana finds joy in creating stories that make kids of all ages laugh-out-loud, open up their minds and hearts, and let their imaginations run freely.
“Books are our tickets to adventure. They let us explore fascinating places, and join charming heroes, crooked villains, and magical creatures through unforgettable journeys. My job is to create the itinerary.”
 
 
connect with the author: 
website facebook twitter instagram goodreads
 
 
 
 
 

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