Tag Archives: music

Our Lunar New Year by Yobe Qiu (Book Review)

Picture

 
 
It’s almost Lunar New Year! Xiao Mi, Hang, Kwan, Malai and Charu all celebrate the New Year in their own special way. Read this book to learn how each one of the Chinese, Korean, Thai, Vietnamese and Indian children and their families honor Lunar New Year, from dragon dances in China to firecrackers in India!
 
 
Buy the Book
 Amazon
ByYQ ~ ​Barnes & Noble
 
 
 
 
 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from iRead Book ToursI voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.
 
 
Our Lunar New Year by Yobe Qiu educates readers on how five countries (China, Korea, India, Vietnam, and Thailand) celebrate their new year. Under each header, it lists the proper name for their holiday. Example: Chinese Spring Festival is Chun Jie, and Thailand is Songkran. 

I absolutely love learning new facts. For instance, in Our Lunar New Year, I discovered “Firecrackers scare away naughty spirits.” The clothes worn during Seollal (Korean New Year) are called hanbok. Every country mentioned, except Thailand, spoke of something people eat, wear, possess, or even a color that is supposed to bring good luck to them in the new year. Fascinating, right?! There’s so much nifty information — facts that any child or adult should learn because it’s essential to be informed about other cultures. 


Maria Christina Lopez, Jennifer Prevatt, and Pui Yu Chan worked very well together to create illustrations that captured the reader’s eye and elevated the story. I loved the dragon, the scrumptious-looking food, the diverse characters, and all the beautiful colors. 


I highly recommend everyone read this book!
 

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

 
 
 
Meet the Author: 
Picture

 
​Yobe is an educator, entrepreneur and mom who lives in NYC. As an educator, she focused on teaching families to embrace love, diversity and different cultures. Through the years working in the classrooms and closely with other educators, she noticed the lack of multi-cultural resources that represented children of color. That is when Yobe decided to create multicultural children stories that feature Asian children, families and cultures! Yobe loves spending time with her daughter, reading to children and taking long walks during the day!
 
Connect with the Author:
 Website Facebook ~ Instagram
 
 

Leave a Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Peel Back and See by Mike Thorn (Book Review)

In spaces both familiar and strange, unknowable horrors lurk.

From the recesses of the Internet, where cosmic terror shows its face on an endless live feed, to a museum celebrating the sordid legacy of an occultist painter, this chilling collection of sixteen short stories will plunge you into the eerie, pessimistic imagination of Mike Thorn. Peel Back and See urges its readers to look closer, to push past surface-level appearances and face the things that stir below.

 

Amazon Purchase Link
Journalstone.com

 

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

 

Peel Back and See is a collection of sixteen (16) short stories that are heavy on unforgettable encounters with hungry creatures, blood and gore, fear, Satan, and (weirdly enough) sexual arousal. 

Some stories stuck with me more than others. Below are my top five (5). 

1.) Mr. Mucata’s Final Requests: Everyone knows you don’t try to double-cross Satan. I mean, come on, don’t even try. Deals with him are also a bad idea. Seriously, the worst possible choice a person can make. If you believe in the devil, demons, and hell, say NO to anything offered. Period!

2.) @GorgoYama2013: We’re raised to know you NEVER go into a stranger’s car. Horror movies have ingrained in us to NEVER go into a strange basement, especially alone. Victor broke all the rules. What he met could best be described as a horrific version of Krang (the brain) from TMNT. If you don’t know who I am talking about, look him up! 

3.) Vomitus Bacchanalius: Okay, people are vomiting. Aliens are eating the regurgitated food. There are goo-faced men. Ugh, this story was gross, BUT good! I loved the nod to Gordon Ramsay too. 🙂

4.) The Furnace Room Mutant: This story stood out more because you’d think an unnatural being would be the monster in the story. I like it when authors step out from the paranormal norm. 🙂

5.) Havoc: This was the first story in the collection, and it made me close my laptop and take one giant step back from it. Read the story, and you’ll understand why. There was only one part I wasn’t too keen on — a flashback scene between student and teacher. I don’t want to divulge too much, but it made my score drop from a five to a four. (for this story only, not the overall score of the anthology)

 

 In Peel Back and See, thirteen of the sixteen stories scored three and above. That’s impressive! I encourage others to read the collection and see which story has you cowering under the covers. 


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

Amazon Purchase Link
Journalstone.com

 

 

_DSF2007 (1)

Mike Thorn is the author of the short story collection Darkest Hours. His fiction has appeared in numerous magazines, anthologies and podcasts, including Vastarien, Dark Moon Digest, The NoSleep Podcast, Tales to Terrify, and Prairie Gothic. His film criticism has been published in MUBI Notebook, The Film Stage, and Vague Visages. He completed his M.A. with a major in English literature at the University of Calgary, where he wrote a thesis on epistemophobia in John Carpenter’s Prince of Darkness.

Connect with him on Twitter (@MikeThornWrites) or visit his website for more information: mikethornwrites.com.

Leave a Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Kayla: A Modern-Day Princess by Deedee Cummings (Book Review)

Kayla: A Modern-Day Princess by Deedee Cummings

(Ages 4-10),  24 pages

 

Kayla: A Modern-Day Princess is a heartwarming story about family, role models, dreams, and discovering a determination for growth. 

The first in a five-part series, this diverse picture book shines the spotlight on a little brown girl who loves musical theater and never lets anything get in the way of her dreams. Everyone else has an idea of who she should be, but in the end, she discovers that she is the one who gets to decide. 

The story also reveals the special family dynamic that Kayla shares with her mom; a hard-working woman who struggles with the guilt of not being as available for her young daughter as she would like. But as the story progresses, Kayla and her mom realize the impact of valuing the time they have together as well as the importance of seeing each other acknowledge (and pursue) their individual dreams. 

“Daughters often learn their place in the world by watching their mothers claim theirs.” ~Author Deedee Cummings

 
 

Kindle Purchase Link ~ Print Purchase Link 
Make a Way Media    
Goodreads

 
 
I received a complimentary copy of this book from iRead Book Tours.  I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.
 
Kayla: A Modern-Day Princess by Deedee Cummings delivered a powerful message to any child reading or listening to the story. Be proud of who you are! 
 
As the author stated, people can be mean sometimes, but it’s important not to pay attention to them. While that feat is difficult, it’s essential to teach children to value themselves over other people’s opinions of them. 
 
As with any other children’s book I read, I always ask my daughter’s impression. Her opinion is important since she is the viewing audience. She’s a bit older than the target audience (3-7), but I still value her input. 🙂
 
Here’s what she had to say. 
 
“I love the teddy bear on the cover since I love teddy bears. The highlight around the words makes it easier to read because the background is so careful. It makes the words pop on the pages. I love the background colors too. The pages look mystical or magical. Oh, and the fox is really cute.”
 
When I asked her what she’d score from 1-5, she said (without hesitation) a 5.
I agree. 
 
Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤
 
 
 
 
Meet the Author:
Author Deedee Cummings
As a therapist, attorney, CEO of Make A Way Media, and author of fifteen children’s books, Deedee Cummings has a passion for ensuring equality, inclusion, and social justice for the next generation. Since her first book published in 2014, Cummings has been on a mission to help young dreamers and doers “see themselves” in the pages of the books they read.

Cummings has spent more than two decades working within the family therapy and support field, and much of her writing shares her experiences of working with kids in therapeutic foster care.

By the end of 2021, this #OWNVOICES author will have fifteen diverse children’s books to her credit, including the Rapid Release of her Kayla: A Modern-Day Princess five-book series. All fifteen of Cummings’ diverse picture, poetry, and workbooks for kids reflect her professional knowledge and love of life.

Cummings is also the founder and creator of the Louisville Book Festival, a literacy-based celebration in Louisville, KY, celebrated on October 22nd and 23rd, 2021.

connect with the author:  website  ~ make a way media  ~ twitter   ~  facebook ~ pinterest ~ instagramgoodreads

 

Leave a Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

The Bashful Frying Pan: Kitchen Tales by Cecília Vizvári (Book Review)

Book One

Age Level: 3 – 12

Paperback: 53 pages

 

From the first part of the kitchen tales you learn how the most conceited teapot becomes the nicest and friendliest teapot in the world. Of course the tea cups, garlic press, cake-server, kitchen sponge, and not to be forgotten, the leftover chocolate sauce, also play their part.


Kindle Purchase Link

Print Purchase Link

 

 

Book Two

Age Level: 3 – 12

Print Length: 50 pages

 

In the second part of the Kitchen Tales we can read about how the Bashful Frying Pan started to sing for the first time. Why did he break into a song all of a sudden? What did the Haughty Teapot say, and what about the garlic press and the cake-server? Were they also surprised? Read the tale!

Kindle Purchase Link

Print Purchase Link

 

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

 

The Bashful Frying Pan was read by me (40+) and my daughter (11). Below are our thoughts on the story. 

We love to have music playing while we cook. It makes dinner prep go by in a snap! Therefore, we enjoyed watching the kitchen helpers get into the groove. Adorable! 

The overall storyline was cute. We didn’t have issues with it, but we did have some with the illustrations and dialogue based on the book’s recommended age level (3 – 12) and grade level (P – 5).

In my opinion, the illustrations were more geared for pre-k or first and second graders. My eleven-year-old thought the images were a bit creepy. She didn’t think kids her age would read this book. 

We also agreed that not many younger kids would know some of the words as in their meaning, or pronunciation: (examples) ratatouille, exquisite, unprecedented, and haughty. She didn’t even know what haughty meant and, again, she’s eleven. 

We’d still recommend this book to parents who have siblings in the 3-12 age bracket. The older child can help the younger sibling read and learn new words. 

 

Heart Rating System:

1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 

Score:  

Kindle Purchase Link

Print Purchase Link

 

 

Book Three

Age Level: 4 – 12

Print Length: 43 pages

In the third part of the Kitchen Tales you will learn how the Kettle In Love has succeeded to win the heart of the Haughty Teapot.Remember, it’s not just anybody. He has to conquer the Haughty Teapot!!! It was also necessary for the spider to give good advice, with a lot of ingenuity and patience, until he was successful.I will not reveal the details, read the tale!

Kindle Purchase Link

Print Purchase Link

 

 

Cecília began writing stories and tales when her children were born. As the number of her children grew, the number of tales increased as well. The children discovered that it was great fun to invent new stories and tales, thus her older kids write and illustrate tales. Cecília’s smaller children only test stories. Since their name is Watercastle in English, they publish their tales under the name Watercastle Tale Works. The parents live with their five kids in Hungary.

Twitter Link

 

Amazon Author Page Link

 

Leave a Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Two More Sensational Children’s Book Authors: Diego Di Mauro and Cecília Vizvári!

 

Author: Diego Di Mauro

Hi, my name is Diego Di Mauro, and I was born in Catania, Italy.

“The Tales of Little Lady M” is my first published author and illustrator work.

Facebook Link
Instagram Link
Twitter Link

 

 

Age Level: 4 – 10
Print Length: 124 pages

A far kingdom hidden beyond the boundaries of imagination. A place where fantasy never sleeps, and dreams are much more than just a mind game. In that land inhabited by magic creatures and strewn with lost secrets, a little girl will begin a journey full of adventures and learnings. Always on a quest for knowing more, she will discover friendship, courage and the wonders behind an act of kindness. And that not everything is what it seems to be… In a far kingdom that only true dreamers can reach, a little lady will rise.

Kindle Purchase Link
Print Purchase Link

Apple Books Purchase Link
Waterstones.com

 

 

 

Author: Cecília Vizvári

Cecília began writing stories and tales when her children were born. As the number of her children grew, the number of tales increased as well. The children discovered that it was great fun to invent new stories and tales, thus her older kids write and illustrate tales. Cecília’s smaller children only test stories. Since their name is Watercastle in English, they publish their tales under the name Watercastle Tale Works. The parents live with their five kids in Hungary.

Twitter Link

 

Amazon Author Page Link

 

 

Download Your FREE Copy today! 

Age Level: 3 – 12
Print Length: 50 pages

 

In the second part of the Kitchen Tales we can read about how the Bashful Frying Pan started to sing for the first time. Why did he break into a song all of a sudden? What did the Haughty Teapot say, and what about the garlic press and the cake-server? Were they also surprised? Read the tale!

Kindle Purchase Link

Print Purchase Link

 

 

Leave a Comment

Filed under Uncategorized