Category Archives: ***** Great – A Keeper, If You Borrow It, Give It Back!

Oh Susannah: Things That Go Bump

Title: Oh Susannah: Things That Go Bump
Author: Carole P. Roman
Illustrator: Mateya Arkova
Publisher: CreateSpace
ISBN: 9781947188136

“She had wasted all that time being afraid of something that wasn’t even real,” Susannah acknowledges in Carole P. Roman’s children’s book, Oh Susannah: Things That Go Bump.

~ What ~
Second in the Oh Susannah series, this sixty-two-page paperback targets early elementary school-aged children and readers who like short chapter story books. With no profanity or violence, it would best be read to beginner readers based on some complicated words. Every two to nine-page chapter has a small black and white illustration at its beginning. The ending includes the author’s biography and the first chapter of the prior book in the series.

In this continuing short story, Susannah has been invited to sleep at her best friend’s house, but she is wary as she thinks a ghost lives there. After helping a blind girl, Susannah learns that others can be frightened of things too, including something innocuous as a unicorn. When Susannah goes to the sleepover, not only is she surprised by what she finds, but she also realizes that being afraid can be conquered.

~ Why ~
With this story being told in many short chapters, the book will engage young readers who can relate to having anxiety of the unknown. I like how a blind girl helped show Susannah the way to understanding fear and realize we all are scared of something. Having the chapters short and to the point keeps a new reader interested.

~ Why Not ~
The book contains many multi-syllable words so it may be hard for beginner readers to comprehend. One chapter is almost ten pages long so the reader may want to split it into two sections. Since the story ends with a teaser, it may frustrate some that they have to wait for the next book in the series.

~ Who ~
Award-winning author, Roman has written complete series for children of books based on countries, civilizations, and pirate genre as well as non-fiction for adults. She lives in New York with her husband and close to her children and grandchildren.

~ Wish ~
I wish the story were complete, but it forces the reader to anticipate the next book in the series. If four or five books were bundled in the complete series, it would be a nice box gift set for a young reader.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a short chapter book in a series that offers warranted lessons of life such as dealing with fear, this read would be an excellent choice, especially for young girls who love to read.

Thanks to the author for furnishing this complimentary book that I am reviewing freely.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Hans Christian Andersen’s Fairy Tales

Title: Hans Christian Andersen’s Fairy Tales
Author: Hans Christian Andersen
Illustrator: Kay Nielsen
Publisher: Racehorse Publishing, Inc.
ISBN: 978-1-63158-133-5

“But the most memorable stories in the collection you are about to read, by the Danish author Hans Christian Andersen, are equally popular and unforgettable in a way that makes them unique, just as Andersen himself was,” the foreword by Joan D. Vinge states in the book, Hans Christian Andersen’s Fairy Tales.

~ What ~
At two-hundred-and-eighty-eight pages, this hardbound targets those who enjoy short stories from the iconic author. After a foreword, sixteen fairy tales are told that include a dozen colored illustrations plus black and white drawings by Kay Nielsen.

From four to fifty-two pages each, the stories include famous ones such as The Flying Trunk, The Nightingale, The Snow Queen, and the Elder Tree Mother to name a few. Whether they are fanciful or frightening, they are enjoyed by both young and old readers.

~ Why ~
Those who love Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tales will appreciate this collection. When I first opened the book, I felt like a child opening my McGuffey Reader with the old-fashioned block font. I could easily envision reading the stories at bedtime to our grandchildren when they come for an overnight visit. After reading the tales such as The Real Princess, one may notice how many other tales are told regarding peas hidden in a mattress.

~ Why Not ~
Some young children may be frightened during some parts of these tales while others may not be able to comprehend their meanings. Others may want more simplified plots.

~ Wish ~
Since the book are dated fairy tales, it would be nice to include the background of why Andersen wrote each or when as that would be intriguing to learn.

~ Want ~
For those who enjoy Andersen’s classic tales, this would make a nice addition to a book collection for any age group.

Thanks to Bookpleasures and the author for this book that I freely evaluated.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Night Night, Train

Product DetailsAuthor: Amy Parker
Illustrator: Virginia Allyn
Publisher: Tommy Nelson
ISBN: 978-0-7180-8932-0

“Night night, boys,
Night night, girls,
Night night, God, and night night, world,” the story ends in Amy Parker’s children’s book, Night Night, Train.

~ What ~
At twenty pages, this board book with a padded front cover targets children ages three to five years old. With no scary scenes, it is a nice story about a train with a family of dogs that heads to Sleepytown. Full page color illustrations of the animals on the train cover the pages.

Written in rhyme with some complicated wording, this tale involves a dog family of six boarding a train and getting a ride to bed while on it. With the furry pets getting tickets and entering the train, they find their seats, share a meal, read a book, take a bath, get into their pajamas, pray to God, climb into bed, and get a good night’s sleep, knowing that God is in control.

~Why ~
Having two granddaughters who are ages four and one years old, their routine is similar to this book in that they take a bath after dinner, read a book, and then get tucked into bed. I like how the book involves a train ride to bedtime and God loving us. The puppies are cute and adorable.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like books that mention God may not approve of this book, but He is mentioned only three times. Some may not have the same bedtime routine as the book explains.

~ Wish ~
There is nothing I would change about this read.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a book to read at bedtime that is short and sweet, this one may gently rock a child to sleep as it chugs along the bedtime rails.

Thanks to Book Look Bloggers for furnishing this complimentary book that I am freely reviewing.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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5-Minute Adventure Bible Stories

Title: 5-Minute Adventure Bible Stories
Content: Catherine DeVries
Illustrator: Diane Mielke
Publisher: Zonderkids
ISBN: 978-0-310-72970-6

“But the adventure isn’t over. The most important thing has yet to happen …Jesus is coming back!” the ending states in Catherine DeVries’s book, 5-Minute Adventure Bible Stories.

~ What ~
Part of the Adventure Bible series, this one-hundred-and-ninety-two-page hardbound targets children ages four to eight years old who are looking for quick Bible stories that can be read in five minutes or less. Using wide-sweeping, full-color, full-page illustrations, it references the New International Version of the Bible. The beginning has a table of contents, followed by thirty-three stories and ending with an advertisement.

In this oversized book with a padded cover, there are fifteen stories taken from the Old Testament and eighteen from the New Testament. With each covering four to six pages, the well-known stories range from Creation, Moses, Samson, and Esther to Jesus’s birth, miracles, death, and resurrection to name a few. At the end of each story is a scroll with an adapted Adventure Discovery and Words to Treasure.

~ Why ~
Many young children love to read or be read a Bible story at bedtime. I love how this book is laid out with detailed, realistic characters and scenery while the paragraphs are written in a black font over part of the background. The stories are told simply but contain enough facts to understand and comprehend. I appreciate the ending of each story includes a fact or tidbit and a written out Bible story.

~ Why Not ~
For those who want nothing to do with learning about the God and the Bible, this would not be a good choice. Although there is no explanation of Mary’s virginity, the plan of eternal salvation of Jesus shedding His blood on the cross for our sins and rising again is mentioned. Some young ones may be frightened seeing the depictions of angry men, vicious lions, dead Goliath, and Jesus being crucified.

~ Wish ~
I wish all pronouns of God were capitalized for reverence.

~ Want ~
If your preschooler to early elementary school age child wants to read more vivid stories from the Bible, this would make the perfect addition to his or her bookcase.

Thanks to Z-Blog Squad for furnishing this complimentary book that I am under no obligation to review.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Liderstar Glow Birthday Banner

Birthday Banner 1CELEBRATE BIRTHDAYS IN THE DARK

~ What ~
Made of card stock paper, this string banner spells out the words HAPPY BIRTHDAY on 14 pennants that spread 10 feet across and can glow in the dark. With each lettered card being 7 by 5 inches, they have different colors with a black background and gold borders that emit of a green glow when there is no lighting. Also added are 4 expandable 9.8-inch light blue and 6.7 pale salmon colored decorative round fans.

~ Why ~Birthday Banner 2
When we have birthdays, we like to make the occasion special, so this set is fun and attractive. I like that the pennants are already attached to a ribbon, so all needs to be done is spread it across the room or wall. The fans are attractive and easy to open or close for storage.

~ Why Not ~
Some may want the pennants to be either larger or smaller. Others may wish there were different colors on the fans as they are only available in the enclosed colors. Initially, when I received them, only 4 of the cards glowed in the dark, however, once I kept them in the sun for 5 minutes, they all shined brightly when tested.

~ Wish ~
I wish the ribbon were white or black as they would match better for any party decor. Including silver instead of gold borders might be helpful.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a way to celebrate a birthday in the dark, this is the perfect solution.

Thanks to Liderstar for this discounted product I am under no obligation to evaluate.

GRAMMARLY checked for errors in this review.

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My First Book of Prayers

Title: The Beginner’s Bible My First Book of Prayers
Illustrator: Denis Alonso
Publisher: Zonderkidz
ISBN: 978-0-310-75537-1

“Dear God, thank you for making me just the way I am,” the prayer titled Purpose regarding Queen Esther begins in Zondervan’s children’s book, The Beginner’s Bible My First Book of Prayers.

~ What ~
Part of The Beginner’s Bible series, this thirty-two-page board book with a padded front cover and rounded corners targets children from four to eight years old.  The book covers sixteen Bible verses taken from the Old and New Testaments of the Holy Bible with corresponding short prayers. It would best be read out loud to nonreaders or beginner readers who like to look at pictures due to their limited reading comprehension level.

The book presents sixteen prayers related to well-known Bible stories. On the left side of the pages is an illustration of an iconic story with a written out Bible verse below it. The right side has a themed prayer to read relating to the story. Some examples are Adam and Eve’s gratitude, Noah’s hard work, Joseph’s forgiveness, the friendship of David and Jonathan, Jesus’s parables about kindness and His love of children, and the Lord’s Prayer. The colorful, easy-to-decipher illustrations show expressive characters.

~ Why ~
Teaching young ones to pray to God is important and should be started at an early age. I like how the themed topics cover wisdom, courage, peace, sharing, honesty, happiness, generosity, and patience to name a few. The prayers that are one-to-four sentences each are simplified and easy to understand for a young one’s mind.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not want to promote teaching a child about praying will pass on this book. It may be too advanced for beginner readers due to the two and three syllable words. Some children may not know the stories as only a verse is written out, but this opens the door for discussion about the Bible and its contents.

~ Wish ~
This reviewer wishes all pronouns of God were capitalized for reverence.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a book of sixteen short prayers correlating to Bible stories for toddlers to early elementary school age readers, this is a wonderful start to interacting with our Savior.

Thanks to Z-Blog Squad for furnishing this complimentary book that I am freely reviewing.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Ready, Set, Find Noah’s Ark

Title: Ready, Set, Find Noah’s Ark
Publisher: Zonderkidz
ISBN: 978-0-310-75959-1

“Ready, Set, Find as you read the story of Noah’s Ark in this interactive board book for young readers,” the back jacket states in Zonderkidz children’s book,  Ready, Set, Find Noah’s Ark.

~ What ~
This numbered twelve-page board book with rounded corners and five page-tabs targets children ages four to eight years old who enjoy the Biblical story of Noah and the ark. With the left side of the pages being pale colored backgrounds with a sentence or two about the story, underneath are eight colorful objects with their names listed. The opposite pages are detailed and colorful illustrations that match the story and contain each of the objects to find.

The simple story includes God having Noah build an ark to protect his family and him when a flood covered the earth because all the people were evil. God sends two of each animals into the ark and closes the door behind them. After the rains and water cease, the ark rests safely on land, and God puts a rainbow in the sky to remind us He will never flood the earth again.

~ Why ~
Having several grandchildren who live out of state, I cannot wait to share this cute and fun book with them because they love to match up duplicate pictures. I like how the illustrations are colorful while being easy to identify with some of the same items included again on other pages. It reinforces the iconic story while searching for objects in the artwork.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not believe in Christ or have a personal relationship with Him will probably avoid this book that discusses God punishing the people of the earth by flooding it. Young children may get upset that all but a few people died, yet this may be an opportunity to discuss why it happened. Some beginner readers may have trouble reading the book by themselves.

~ Wish ~
It would help if some of the complicated wording were easier to understand for beginner readers. I wish all pronouns of God were capitalized for reverence.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for an engaging children’s book that is interactive with objects to find in the illustrations, this makes an excellent choice about Noah and the ark.

Thanks to Z Blog Squad for this book to read and review.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

 

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Best Choice 12V ATV Quad Wheeler

ATV 1ZOOMING ON AN ATV

~ What ~
Made of plastic and metal, this electrical red ATV is for children 3 to 8 years old who weigh up to 110 pounds. Measuring 44.5 by 30 by 29.5 inches, it weighs almost 60 pounds and comes with a 12V motor, 4-wheel suspension, headlights, horn, storage basket, and built-in multifunctional MP3 player. Instructions on assembling is included.

~ Why ~ATV 2
Having several out-of-state grandchildren who visit often, we know they will need toys to keep occupied, especially when staying at our house. I like how this ride-on ATV is the perfect size for a toddler to young child to drive. It is able to go 4.4 miles per hour so will not be too fast for a beginner driver. It turns easily and is heavy enough that it will not tip over. The storage area is deep and can hold toys or other objects.

~ Why Not ~
Some may consider these types of toys dangerous for some children, but with safety and precautions taken, it can be enjoyed by young ones with adult supervision. Others may wish it did not take 8-10 hours to fully charge and can only run for 1-2 hours. A few may not like that assembly is required, but if this 60-year-old woman could put it together by herself under 30 minutes, you should have no problems.

~ Wish ~ATV 3
With the vehicle coming in only red and black, it would be cool if in other bright or neon colors.

~ Want ~
If you are looking a fun rechargeable ATV for young kids, this is definetely a keeper.

Thanks to Best Choice for this sample that I am freely evaluating.ATV 4

Direct Link: https://bestchoiceproducts.com/products/best-choice-products-kids-12v-powered-extra-large-ride-on-atv-quad-4-wheel-suspension-mp3-player-lights-storage-basket?variant=43421817998
GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Best Choice High-Speed Toy Race Car

BC Racer 1FUN & FAST RACE CAR DRIVING

~ What ~
Weighing 2.7 pounds and measuring 11.75 by 7.5 by 4.25 inches, this bright lime green and black racing dune buggy is 1/14th the scale of a real vehicle. Using a 9-volt battery for the remote control, the toy car made of engineering nylon comes with a remote control, USB cord, 6-volt car battery, and instructions in a gift box. It is recommended for ages 8 and older.

~ Why ~BC Racer 2
I like that this electric car can be enjoyed by both our young grandchildren, puppy, and visiting friends with teens (okay, our 2 adult sons will most likely fight over it too). Able to be recharged via the USB cord (it takes 4 hours to completely charge if empty), runs up to 20 minutes, and can go up to 9.5 miles per hour. It is easy to turn its wheels with the remote control by moving the trigger back and forth with one hand and turning the wheel with the other. I found it maneuvered better than a larger one we own.

~ Why Not ~BC Racer 3
Those who do not like racing small vehicles may not be interested in this item. Some may want a larger or smaller car, although this one looks somewhat realistic with the added figure wearing a white helmet. Although it is plastic, it is heavier than our other one too.

~ Wish ~
It would be nice if these were available in different color options.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a fun way to remotely drive a small race car on the driveway, sidewalk, dirt, gravel, low-profile grass, and Berber or short carpet, this one does the trick, bouncing back with its 4 spring shocks when it is whacked into a brick wall or furniture on purpose or by accident.

Thanks to Best Choice for this product that I am freely evaluating.

Grammarly was used to check for errors in this review.

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God Bless My School

God Bless My School (A God Bless Book)Title: God Bless My School
Author: Hannah C. Hall
Illustrator: Steve Whitlow
Publisher: Tommy Nelson
ISBN: 978-0-7180-1109-3

“Help your own little learner look forward to exciting activities and new friends and–most of all–remember that God is with them everywhere they go,” the back jacket cover states in Hannah C. Hall’s children’s book, God Bless My School.

~ What ~
Part of the God Bless series, this twenty-page board book with a padded front cover and rounded edges targets children preschool age or older who are starting school. Focusing on the first day of school and what to expect, it also reminds the reader that God is with him or her. There are no scary or frightening scenes.

With cute animals explaining the first day of going to school, there are four lines of rhyming verses on one part of the open pages that contain colorful, engaging illustrations. Beginning with autumn coming, a baby bear ties his shoes, a penguin zips up his backpack, and a bird flies off bravely. At school, the little ones are introduced to their teacher, learn, laugh, have lunch, nap, play outside, and make friends. When the day is done, they all state to have God bless their school.

~ Why ~
Often children are insecure about starting school, yet this book told via baby animals calmly shows how interesting and fun it can be. I like that the rhymes are short and positive as the reader learns what school is. Mentioning how God is there with them may calm their fears. The pictures are cute and detailed enough to keep a young child’s attention, especially the adorable baby depictions.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not approve of books that mention God may not want this book, although His name is only mentioned three times. With multiple-syllable and a few hard-to-comprehend words, the book would best be read out loud to beginner readers.

~ Wish ~
Although the rhyming is charming, it would help if some of the wording were easier to read for beginner readers who have not started school yet.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a children’s book that helps preschoolers and kindergarteners get acquainted with going to school for the first time, this would be an excellent choice.

Thanks to Book Look Bloggers for this complimentary book that I am freely evaluating.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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