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I Miss School by Ryan Reaves (Book Review)


“I Miss School” is written by a child, for a child. In this heartwarming and honest story, kids will understand that their feelings about the pandemic are normal and it is perfectly acceptable to feel a range of emotions related to not going to in-person school. The book instills hope for kids that brighter days are ahead.
 
 
 
 
 I received a complimentary copy of this book from iRead Book Tours. I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.
 
 
I Miss School will strike a chord with young readers/listeners because many children have spent this year attending class from their kitchen tables. 


I Miss School touched my heart because these thoughts belong to a real-life six-year-old—a child who also happens to be the author. As a parent of a tween daughter, I know the lack of interaction has negatively affected my child. Like Ryan, she misses her teachers, eating lunch with her friends, and every fun activity they did at school.


This pandemic has been brutal on all of us, but especially young children. 


For so long, children could not hang out due to the fear of catching covid-19. Facetime and Zoom calls are nice, but most kids crave in-person interactions. 


I encourage all parents/caregivers of young children to sit down and read I Miss School with your little ones. Maybe they’ll share with feelings with you if they haven’t already. 


As I am writing this review, covid vaccines are not readily available for Ryan’s age group, but I hope it will be soon. I hate to see any child sad— real or in character form. As for the characters, the illustrations were beautifully drawn. I couldn’t locate the illustrator’s name, but whoever you are, I commend you on your artistic ability. 


Nice job, Ryan Reaves! You, my dear, are a superstar! 

 
Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤
 
 
 
Meet the Author:
Author Ryan Reaves
Six-year-old Ryan Reaves began writing her debut story “I Miss School” at five years old after yearning to return to her brick-and-mortar school during the covid 19 pandemic. She wanted to write the book for other kids, so they knew they weren’t alone in their thoughts and feelings and that we are all in this together.

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Alicia Connected: The Big Gift by Derek Fisher (Book Review)

Alicia has finally entered a new world of technology when her parents give her a tablet for her birthday. She has watched and listened to her friends who have already been enjoying the games and apps in a connected world that Alicia has yet to experience. Until now. But using technology can bring a set of challenges that are new to both Alicia and her parents. Understanding the different apps and games and how to use them properly can be tricky. Will Alicia know how to use it in a way that is fun and allows her to connect with her friends while being safe and secure? Both her and her parents will face the excitement and challenges together as she jumps headfirst into using her new tablet.
 
 
 
 
 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from iRead Book Tours. I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.
 
 
Apps, games, and social networking sites can be overwhelming for first-time users. Kids rely on each other a lot to navigate this world. IMHO, online apps/games are a money pit. The dad in Alicia Connected: The Big Gift by Derek Fisher was correct when he stated that the price tags attached in online gaming stores were high. It’s true, you can work to earn merchandise, but Alicia learned pretty fast that it’d take forever to acquire an item on your own. These game developers bank on you, the player, spending real money on fake things. Kids, like adults, shell out a lot to purchase levels and bling. 


Other truths in Alicia Connected: The Big Gift, there are some crazy people on the internet, and you definitely don’t know everyone you are talking to online. I appreciate Derek Fisher discussing safety precautions and stating the parent (his the story) would be monitoring their daughter’s activity on the apps. Derek Fisher also pointed out how kids are becoming more consumed with the number of followers and likes. Heck, adults are the same way. So many people want to be the next internet star/influencer. 


I miss the good old days of atari and rotary phones. 😀


While Alicia Connected: The Big Gift has a lot of beneficial information told in an entertaining way, the best part was the final moments. I won’t say what happened, but it was sweet…and a wee bit funny. 


On a side note: The similarities between my daughter and Alicia were uncanny. She’s addicted to animal videos, making slime, has glow-in-the-dark stickers on her ceiling, and loves to turn trash into treasures. My daughter uses online videos to inspire her next craft project. 🙂


I highly recommend this book to all middle-school students! 


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

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B&N ~ IndieBound
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Meet the Author
Author Derek Fisher
Derek Fisher has spent decades in the computer engineering field with the last decade in cybersecurity as a leader, speaker, and instructor. His passion has been to take complex security topics and make them simple and easy to understand. He holds several security certifications and teaches cybersecurity at Temple University where he is also an external advisory board member to the cybersecurity program.

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Bake Believe by Cori Cooper (Book Review)

Can it be real? Or is it bake believe?

All Cat Anderson wants out of life is a circle of friends to giggle with and a few cute boys to flirt with. Her first day of eighth grade is looking perfect—until a scheduling mishap places her in a culinary arts class.

Food, it turns out, is a very big deal. In her family there is a secret, too big to stay hidden any longer. A secret too fantastic to be real. Something happens when Cat bakes. Something impossible.

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I received a complimentary copy of this book from R&R Book Tours.
I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.

 

I adored Bake Believe by Cori Cooper. The cute foodie titles weren’t just for show. Nope. Almost every chapter contained a recipe: “Homemade Bread” – “Brownies” – Sugar Cookies” and a dozen more mouth-watering delights. While the recipes were incentive enough to read the book, it also contained drama, humor, and a heaping spoonful of magic.

According to Amazon, Bake Believe is marketed towards teens and young; however, this forty plus woman found it highly entertaining. It reminded me of the teeny-bopper movies I would watch in my younger years. 

I encourage anyone from pre-teen and up to read this book. Then, start baking! Just make sure and cook while happy; you don’t want to chance pulling a Cat. (That will make sense after you read Bake Believe, so read it!) 

 

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

 

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About the Author

Cori (2)

Cori Cooper lives in the magical Arizona Mountains, which she’s pretty convinced is the setting for all the fairy tales.

Besides writing stories, she adores hanging out with her family, playing board games, hiking and baking, baking, baking. Like Cat’s family, she’s positive Cinnamon Rolls fix everything.

Cori’s Stories | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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January River by Bernard Jan (Book Showcase)

Five friends. One dog. One river carrying a secret.

When one of their friends goes missing, everything comes crashing down for the small group of childhood friends in the small town of Greenfield. Ethan takes it hard. Then he loses his dog, his only consolation.

Hoping to start anew, Ethan leaves Greenfield and moves to New York City. Far from the ghosts of his childhood and the river that gives and takes life. There he finds his one true love and builds a career as a bestselling author.

But how long will Ethan’s happiness last as doubts creep back into him and shatter his reality? And will his reconciliation with the past come at too great a price?

All rivers carry their secrets, but not every river keeps its secret forever.

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Ethan McCoy lay in the grass, stretched out to his full length. He flung his head back and unbuttoned his shirt, exposing his neck and the pale skin of his chest to the sun. His rolled-up sleeves were already drenched in sweat. Perspiration ran off his forehead, dripping onto the jacket folded under his head in a faux pillow.

Ethan removed the light-sensitive glasses from his nose and wiped the sweat off with a handkerchief. Inhaling deeply, he stared at the sun through unprotected eyes. The scent of Greenfield invaded his nostrils, conquering his throat, lungs, and heart. Inside him the memories were waking up, ignited by familiar feelings from the past.

In the strong light he felt a pain in his eyes, forcing him to close them. So that he might suffer too, he didn’t move to escape into the protective shadows. Determined to stay exposed to heat that reached him from the vast distance with such strength, he willed the sun to cause him pain. Wanted it to numb his senses and make him oblivious to any and all experiences—both pleasant and unpleasant. Most of all, he wanted to let go of the internal pain that refused to leave him alone after all these years.

He wished one pain could soothe another. The physical could annul the emotional. Even as he thought it, he knew it was in vain. He also accepted there was no cure for that pain. At best, it might be blunted some day and become just a painful reminder of his past.

But it would never disappear.

Because if it did, Greenfield would no longer exist. The artificially created grove beside the river in which he now rested, would vanish too. The same for Willy, then Jason, Derrick, and Sarah. Riv and . . . Susan. Could they evaporate, all of them? Did he have the right to ask that?

Or, what if it were possible for all of them to remain in their reality where they belonged? While he—Ethan—disappeared? Both could be possible only by some supernatural phenomenon. Something that could never happen.

Eventually moving into the shadows, he took off his shirt, shoes and socks and continued with his fantasy. Recalling. Or gathering up the strength and determination to do what he intended. Well, that’s what he planned on saying if someone asked him why he was there. So far, nobody had. Nobody knew. He arrived less than an hour ago. He hadn’t gone to the town, but had come straight to the river. To the place where everything had begun. Therefore, it only seemed fitting that it be where the beginning of the end transpired. The place where he would insert a period at the end of a life story. If he got lucky, he’d tear out a blank page and start anew. No memories. No past.

Without the bad memories, he could live in peace.

However, if he were honest with himself, that would be equally impossible to achieve.


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