Category Archives: Childrens

Review: Love You S’More

Title: Love You S’More
Author: Melinda Lee Rathjen
Illustrator: Rob McClurkan
Publisher: WorthyKids
ISBN: 978-1-5460-0215-4

“You really are special – it’s you I adore! And however it’s measured, I love you s’more,” Melinda Lee Rathjen writes in her children’s book, Love You S’more.

~ What ~
This twenty-page oversized board book with rounded corners targets children one to four years old who love to be told how much they are loved. With no scary scenes, contains sophomoric illustrations that will keep the attention of little ones. An easy-to-read font covers the pages.

This short story involves two raccoons who compete to see who loves the other more, correlating it to eating iconic s’mores made out of graham crackers, marshmallows, and chocolate and camping. As the two critters sit in front of a fire in the forest and toast their treat, they debate about their love for one another.

~Why ~
This is a cute tale that families can easily gravitate to if they are into camping and sitting around a fire. I liked the rhyming format that included keeping warm, melted marshmallows, sweet chocolate, and how the crackers hug together, just like the two animals. It also mentions trees, the large moon, a grizzly bear, and that they both win the contest about love.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like repetitive wording in books may want to skip this one that repeats “I love you s’more” on almost every page. Others may not like the huge eyes of the raccoon, as they may scare some young ones.

~ Wish ~
It would be nice to have the illustrations show less of the emotions in the raccoons’ eyes, but if a child is concerned or frightened, an explanation could be given about these interesting looking creatures.

~ Want ~
If you want a book that reminds young ones how much they are loved, this one is spot on, especially if you enjoy eating s’mores in the forest.

Thanks to Hachette Book Group, WorthyKids, and the author for this complimentary book that I am under no obligation to review.

#Hachette #WorthyKids #LoveYouSmore #MelindaLeeRathjen #RobMcClurkan

This book can be purchased at https://amzn.to/38F6ulk

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Special Spots

Title: Special Spots
Author & Illustrator: Kelly Artieri
Publisher: Elk Lake Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-649492333

“We should never be mean to anyone just because they are different or can’t learn as fast as others, even when they have tails,” Taylor explains in Kelly Artieri’s children’s book, Special Spots.

~ What ~
This forty-eight-page paperback targets children ages three to nine years old. With no scary scenes, it focuses on a young girl who takes care of a deaf dog. The end of the book contains five discussion questions with comments and the author/illustrator’s biography.

In this tale, Taylor and her family adopt an adorable dog with special needs. Because the canine is deaf, Taylor gets frustrated with him at times, especially when others make fun of the animal and his challenges. When she learns how to train the dog using sign language and takes him to obedience school where there are other dogs with issues, she learns to be caring and loving of her special pet.

~Why ~
This is a nice book for any young reader who loves dogs, especially those with handicaps. I appreciate promoting accepting animals who are not perfect and need extra care, especially when they have been in shelters and need a forever home.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like books about a dog with a disability may not appreciate the read. The background of the pages has muted black spots, which may be distracting and too busy for some children. Beginner readers may have trouble with some of the three- and four-syllable words.

~ Wish ~
Those with ADHD or over-stimulation issues may not like all the spots on every page.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a book that promotes compassion and caring for animals including those with special needs, this is a lovely story for elementary-school-aged children.

Thanks to Elk Lake Publishing and the author for this complimentary book that I am under no obligation to review.

#ElkLakePublishing #SpecialSpots #KellyArtieri #SpecialNeedsDogStory

This book can be found at https://amzn.to/3OFWZme

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Benny Learns a Lesson

Title: Benny Learns a Lesson
Author: Cheryl Rae Johnson
Illustrator: Courtney Smith
Publisher: Elk Lake Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-649491398

“Benny loved his forever family, and now he knew he could do all things through Christ too,” Benny realizes about God in Cheryl Rae Johnson’s children’s book, Benny Learns a Lesson.

~ What ~
The second book of the Benny the Dachshund series, this thirty-eight-page paperback targets children ages three to nine years old who like stories about a dog who learns Christ can help him with all things. With no scary scenes, it focuses on a dachshund who is worried and afraid he has to do something. The end of the book contains the author’s and illustrator’s biographies.

This tale is about Benny the canine who is adopted by his forever family, who happens to include Holly, a young girl who has to visit the doctor. As both the dog and child pray to God not to be scared, they both learn an important lesson about trusting God. With simplistic, colorful illustrations on the left side of the pages, the right sides have the story in a decent size font.

~Why ~
This series is spot on by having both an animal and child praying to God for help, especially when it involves doing something that makes them apprehensive. I love how Holly’s mother promotes trusting in God to help as He is always with us.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ may not approve of a book that encourages praying to and trusting God. Others may not like that a dog thinks he can do anything with God’s assistance as the creature is not a true Christian believer. Beginner readers may have problems with some of the longer sentences.

~ Wish ~
I prefer all pronouns of God capitalized for reverence. A made-up word written several times may confuse new readers.

~ Want ~
If your child has to do something necessary but feels uncomfortable having to do it, this story may help them focus on Christ taking care of them instead of dwelling on the issue or outcome.

Thanks to Elk Lake Publishing and the author for this complimentary book that I am under no obligation to review.

#ElkLakePublishing #BennyLearnsALesson #CherylRaeJohnson #CourtneySmith #ICanDoAllThingsThroughChrist

This book can be found at https://amzn.to/3LfXT6M

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Papa Loves You, Tiny Blue

Title: Papa Loves You, Tiny Blue
Author & Illustrator: Jo Empson
Publisher: WorthyKids
ISBN: 978-1-5460-0221-5

“Some questions are so big we will never know the answer. Now, good night, Tiny Blue. I love you,” Papa tells the penguin in Jo Empson’s children’s book, Papa Loves You, Tiny Blue.

~ What ~
This thirty-two-page oversized hardbound with a matching jacket targets children three- to six-year-olds who love to learn about penguins and how they live and love. With no scary scenes except the suggestion that seals eat penguins, its beautiful watercolor illustrations and easy-to-read font cover the pages. The inner flap jacket contains the book’s description and the author’s biography.

This charming story involves a little penguin named Tiny Blue who idolizes his father by repeatedly asking him questions. As they walk on the seashore, stand on rocks, swim in the deep water, watch a sunset, and settle to sleep in their nest, the parent answers many questions about the age of the ocean, why penguins cannot fly, what jellyfish are, what is the biggest fish, and other interesting questions. When the father is asked if he knows everything, the dad says nobody does but that he loves him, which is the biggest mystery of all.

~Why ~
This is a heartfelt story as it not only contains interesting facts about animals that live in the sea but also how a little one completely trusts his parent to be told the truth. I love the amazing artwork that is beautiful and engaging for all ages. The story is tender in how it promotes love is a mystery that cannot be explained, but we know when we love someone else.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like large books with oversized artwork may want to pass on this read, but they would be missing out. A few may think the little one’s questions go unanswered, but three of them are explained after the story ends with a question to the reader if there are others to ask. Beginner readers may have trouble with the three-syllable words.

~ Wish ~
It would be nice if other animal stories were written in this format that would include both educational information and an underlining theme of love, hope, or kindness.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a beautiful book that will be cherished by young ones, this one that explains penguins and the sea plus promotes a bond between a parent and child would be an excellent choice.

Thanks to Hachette Book Group, WorthyKids, and the author for this complimentary book that I am under no obligation to review.

#Hachette #WorthyKids #PapaLovesYouTinyBlue #JoEmpson #PenguinStoryBookofLove

This book can be purchased at https://amzn.to/3L5HCkz

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Filed under ***** Great - A Keeper, If You Borrow It, Give It Back!, Animals / Pets, Book Review, Childrens, Fiction

Southern Baby: Southern Sayings for Little Ones

Title: Southern Baby
Author: Rebekah Moredock
Illustrator: Jennica Lounsbury
Publisher: WorthyKids
ISBN: 978-1-5460-0061-7

“This little board book introduces young ones to the uniquely charming language of the South,” states the back cover of Rebekah Moredock’s children’s book, Southern Baby: Southern Sayings for Little Ones.

~ What ~
With rounded edges, this twenty-page board book targets children ages three months to three years old. With no scary scenes, it focuses on words and phrases that relate to the southern states of America. Expressive and charming full-color illustrations grace the pages with easy-to-read font size.

In this cute book, the ten words or short sayings explain common languages that those in the South speak. Mentioned are Buggy, Bless Your Heart, Cuter than a June Bug, Cattywampus, Fixin’ to, Clicker, Madder than a Wet Hen, Knee-High to a Grasshopper, Commode, and Ya’ll.

~Why ~
This is a nice way to show how one talks is different than in other parts of the country, especially in the southern states. I like that the words are mostly specific to the targeted area, although some are used elsewhere. Those who live in the South will connect and relate to the sayings and artwork. My niece who lives in Louisiana and recently had a daughter will enjoy this book.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like books that concentrate on a specific part of America may not appreciate this read. Some may feel uncomfortable that a toilet is one of the words, which is used in other parts of the country. A few may find the three and four-syllable words too hard for beginner readers, yet it is geared toward toddlers.

~ Wish ~
While this one is only about the South, it would be nice if it could be a part of a series that covered all parts of the United States.

~ Want ~
If you like Southern charm, this would make a lovely gift for an expectant parent or young one, especially if they are moving to the area and need tips on fun and unique sayings and words.

Thanks to Hachette Book Group, WorthyKids, and the author for this complimentary book that I am under no obligation to review.

#Hachette #WorthyKids #SouthernBabySouthernSayingsforLittleOnes #SouthernTalkforToddlers

This book can be purchased at https://amzn.to/389nu2h

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Benny Finds A Home

Title: Benny Finds A Home
Author: Cheryl Rae Johnson
Illustrator: Courtney Smith
Publisher: Elk Lake Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-950051076

“I want a family of my own. You know, one with some nice children to play with. I’ll be good. Just a nice family I can help,” Bentley prays to God in Cheryl Rae Johnson’s children’s book, Benny Finds A Home.

~ What ~
The first book of the Benny the Dachshund series, this forty-page paperback targets children ages three to nine years old who like stories about a dog who wants to make others happy. With no scary scenes, it focuses on a dachshund who finds his purpose when he is adopted into a nice family. The end of the book contains the author’s and illustrator’s biographies.

This tale is about Benny the canine who is adopted by his forever family, who happens to include Holly, a young girl who struggles with change. As both the dog and child pray to God for a special friendship, they find it together when they met new neighbors. With engaging, colorful illustrations on the left side of the pages, the right sides have the story in a decent size font.

~Why ~
This lovely book is spot on by having both an animal and child praying to God for help and then thanking Him later. I love how the few prayers were written and that the story is endearing to children who may be struggling with a new move or feeling like they have no friends.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ may not approve of a book that promotes praying to God. Others may not like that sadness is included, but it is not overbearing. Beginner readers may have problems with some of the longer sentences.

~ Wish ~
I prefer all pronouns of God capitalized for reverence. The incorrect spelling of one word written twice for emphasis may confuse new readers so I recommend changing it.

~ Want ~
If your family is considering moving or has a child who is lonely, this charming book that includes relying on God would be an excellent choice.

Thanks to Elk Lake Publishing and the author for this complimentary book that I am under no obligation to review.

#ElkLakePublishing #BennyFindsAHome #CherylRaeJohnson #CourtneySmith #FindingAFriend

This book can be found at https://amzn.to/381Mto9

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I Know What Grandma Does While I’m Napping

Title: I Know What Grandma Does While I’m Napping
Author: Shelley Pierce
Illustrator: Courtney Smith
Publisher: Elk Lake Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-950051892

“This and that, this and that. I think I know what’s this and what’s that,” Jori declares in Shelley Pierce’s children’s book, I Know What Grandma Does When I’m Napping.

~ What ~
This fifty-eight-page paperback targets children ages two to six years old who have a connection to their grandmother and still participate in naptime. With no scary scenes, it focuses on a preschooler wondering what her grandma does while she is taking a nap. The end of the book contains the author’s and illustrator’s biographies.

This tale told in rhyme is about young Jori who asks her grandmom what she does while the little girl is sleeping. When the woman answers this and that, the child thinks up several things her grandma is doing that are fun, silly, and inventive. With all wording on the left sides of the pages, the right sides have large, colorful, and expressive illustrations.

~Why ~
This is a fun book to read right before nap or bedtime to an imaginative young one. The illustrations are engaging, especially the expressions on the grandma’s face. I like the fanciful adventures the granddaughter devises such as dancing while cleaning, dressing up the cat, twirling in the rain, jumping on a trampoline, strumming a guitar, and playing hide and seek, with the child never realizing what the woman is really doing during her downtime.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like rhyming books may pass on this one. Others may not like the rhyming format, but it works well with the story even though it covers several pages. Beginner readers may have problems with some of the multiple-syllable words.

~ Wish ~
Due to the rhyming format, there are several complicated words such as crickety-crickety-crat, rata-tat-tat, pitta-pit-pat, Rippleplatt, and zing-zang-zippety-zat that young ones may not understand.

~ Want ~
If you are a grandparent who is in charge of nap time for your grandchildren, this would be a fun read to keep them guessing what you do when they are sleeping.

Thanks to Elk Lake Publishing and the author for this complimentary book that I am under no obligation to review.

#ElkLakePublishing #IKnowWhatGrandmaDoesWhileImNapping #ShelleyPierce #CourtneySmith #GrandmasNapTime

This book can be found at https://amzn.to/3rB8scx

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Rocco’s Day Out

Title: Rocco’s Day Out
Author: Luann Hamill
Illustrator: Nathalie Lewis
Publisher: Elk Lake Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-649494573

“Thanks to you both
For this special day out.
This is what friendship is truly about,”
the owl tells his friends in Luann Hamill’s children’s book, Rocco’s Day Out.

~ What ~
The third book of the Tales from the Clearing series, this forty-four-page paperback targets children ages three to nine years old. With no scary scenes, it focuses on a home-bound owl taken on an adventure. The end of the book contains the author’s and illustrator’s biographies.

This tale told in rhyme is about Henry and Violet, two friends who want to help Rocco, an injured owl, go on an outing outside. After they strap the bird to the back of a turtle’s shell, the three play and have fun in the fresh air. With quaint, colorful illustrations on the left side of the pages, the right sides have the story in rhyming format.

~Why ~
This is another adorable book in the series that has charming characters and beautifully engaging pictures. I love the depiction of how the animal friends worked together to make Rocco happy and have a special fun-filled day. The fanciful rhyming is perfect in content while being interesting. Although it is part of a series, it is a stand-alone story.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like rhyming books about animal friends and their adventures may pass on this one, but they are missing another lovely read. Others may not like the rhyming format, but it works well with the story. Beginner readers may have problems with some of the three-syllable words.

~ Wish ~
There is nothing I would change about this story and am hoping there will be more books added to the series.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for an endearing series of three cute, inquisitive animals and how they care about each other, this one that promotes considering others by helping them enjoy something simple like the outdoors will keep young ones smiling the next time they see a turtle.

Thanks to Elk Lake Publishing and the author for this complimentary book that I am under no obligation to review.

#ElkLakePublishing #RoccosDayOut #LuannHamill #NathalieLewis #TalesfromtheClearing #TurtleRabbitOwlTales

This book can be found at https://amzn.to/3xlu7cD

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Violet’s Fixable Problem

Title: Violet’s Fixable Problem
Author: Luann Hamill
Illustrator: Nathalie Lewis
Publisher: Elk Lake Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-649491893

“All of this time I thought, ‘I am not smart.’
Thank you, my friends, with all of my heart,”
Violet tells Henry and Rocco in Luann Hamill’s children’s book, Violet’s Fixable Problem.

~ What ~
The second book of the Tales from the Clearing series, this forty-page paperback targets children ages three to nine years old. With no scary scenes, it focuses on a rabbit challenged to do something new with the help of friends. The end of the book contains the author’s and illustrator’s biographies.

This tale told in rhyme is about Violet, a homebody bunny who is sad and afraid to tell her friends, Henry the turtle and Rocco the owl, that she cannot perform a simple task. The two dear friends do not make fun of her but help her with her problem, making her happy and eager to try. With quaint, colorful illustrations on the left side of the pages, the right sides have the story in rhyming format.

~Why ~
This is another adorable book in the series that has charming characters and beautifully engaging pictures. I love the depiction of how the animal friends did not make fun of Violet for not being able to do something correctly but willingly helped her solve her dilemma. The fanciful rhyming is perfect in content while being interesting. It can be read as a stand-alone story.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like rhyming books about animal friends and their adventures may pass on this one, but they are missing another lovely read. Others may not like the rhyming format, but it works well with the story. Beginner readers may have problems with some of the three-syllable words.

~ Wish ~
There is nothing I would change about this story and am looking for the next one in the series.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for an endearing series of three cute, inquisitive animals and how they care about each other, this one that promotes working together to achieve a goal would be a memorable story for young ones to recall next time they want to help a friend.

Thanks to Elk Lake Publishing and the author for this complimentary book that I am under no obligation to review.

#ElkLakePublishing #VioletsFixableProblem #LuannHamill #NathalieLewis #TalesfromtheClearing #TurtleRabbitOwlTales

This book can be found at https://amzn.to/37KRxx5

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Henry’s Great Adventure

Title: Henry’s Great Adventure
Author: Luann Hamill
Illustrator: Nathalie Lewis
Publisher: Elk Lake Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-951970352

“Thank you, Rocco, for opening my eyes.
I’ve had more adventures than I realized.”
Henry tells his new friend in Luann Hamill’s children’s book, Henry’s Great Adventure.

~ What ~
The first of the Tales from the Clearing series, this forty-six-page paperback targets children ages three to nine years old. With no scary scenes, it focuses on a turtle who loves to read books but wants to experience his own adventure. The end of the book contains the author’s and illustrator’s biographies.

This tale told in rhyme is about Henry, a loveable turtle who leaves his Wonder Place and ventures down a path in the woods, where he meets Violet the rabbit and Rocco the owl. His new friends show him that reading books can be adventurous too. With quaint, colorful illustrations on the left side of the pages, the right sides have four lines each in rhyming format.

~Why ~
This is an adorable book that has charming characters and beautifully engaging pictures. I love the depiction of how the animals act and treat each other. The fanciful rhyming is perfect in content while being interesting to the story.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like rhyming books about three animal friends and their adventures may pass on this one, but they are missing a lovely read. Others may not like the rhyming format, but it works well with the brief story. Beginner readers may have problems with some of the three-syllable words.

~ Wish ~
There is nothing I would change about this story and am looking for the next one in the series.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for an endearing series of three cute, inquisitive animals and how they care about each other, this one told as a poem would be a delightful story for young ones to cuddle up with at bedtime.

Thanks to Elk Lake Publishing and the author for this complimentary book that I am under no obligation to review.

#ElkLakePublishing #HenrysGreatAdventure #LuannHamill #NathalieLewis #TalesfromtheClearing #TurtleRabbitOwlTales

This book can be found at https://amzn.to/3E5A92c

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