Macaroni and Cheese for Thanksgiving VBT Starts Today!

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My virtual book tour for Macaroni and Cheese for Thanksgiving starts today. You can find me at two places:

Monday, December 5 – Interview at Over the Rainbow Book Reviews

Monday, December 5 – Book Featured at The Writer’s Life

I would appreciate it if you had time to stop by and check out my latest release. Thanks for the support!

For the full schedule please visit http://ccmalandrinos.com/2016/11/23/macaroni-and-cheese-for-thanksgiving-vbt-starts-december-5/

How to Eat Your ABC’s by Theresa A. McKeown

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Witty and clever rhymes combine with vibrant, colorful illustrations to teach the alphabet and encourage healthy eating in How to Eat Your ABC’s by Theresa A. McKeown.

Little BuzzBee is your host flying from A to Z talking about fruits, vegetables, and other edibles kids can find in the garden. This book is a neat way to learn about nutrition and help your kids gravitate toward healthy eating. One thing I could see this book being used for is as a family project where parents and/or grandparents help youngsters find a recipe to make based upon each letter. It might also inspire them to take up gardening to grow their own food.

My one challenge with the book is its length. Kids who are learning their ABCs may not have the attention span to sit through the reading of three to five lines of verse for 26 letters. There’s a lot of helpful information included, so I understand why the length was necessary, I just don’t believe it meets the expectations of the market that way. How to Eat Your ABC’s seems to be for a child in the 7 to 10 age range. If that’s the intended market, then it works.

I truly love the focus of the book and hope to see more from this author.

Rating:🙂🙂🙂🙂

Hardcover: 53 pages
Publisher: The ABCs of Everything, LLC; First edition (September 1, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0692744088
ISBN-13: 978-0692744086

I received a free digital copy from the author through Pump Up Your Book. This review contains my honest opinions, which I have not been compensated for in any way.

Freddy, Hoppie and the Eyeglasses by Michelle Nott

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Freddy, Hoppie and the Eyeglasses by Michelle Nott is a great way to help your child adjust his or her very first pair of glasses.

Freddy runs late for school, his watch is all blurry, and sometimes his wild answers make his classmates laugh. Using his imaginary friend, Hoppie, Freddy is able to help his mother understand what is going on so she can help.

This adorable and funny book tackles an important subject. Sometimes kids don’t want to tell their parents they can’t see the board or the word in a book as clearly as they used to. That can be a frightening thing. Freddy, Hoppie and the Eyeglasses will not only help young people understand it’s okay to share these kinds of problems with their parents; it also shows them how simple an eye exam and getting glasses can be.

The vivid colors in Robert Lee Beers’ artwork capture your attention–especially the green. There were a lot of nice background details in these pictures: the tiny apples on the tree outside of the school, the student of the month poster in Freddy’s classroom, and the eye chart in Dr. Virens’ office.

This book is a great blend of education and entertainment.

Rating:🙂🙂🙂🙂🙂

Paperback: 16 pages
Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc; large type edition edition (February 11, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1616337338
ISBN-13: 978-1616337339

 

I received a free copy of this book from the author. This review contains my honest opinions, which I have not been compensated for in any way.

Candy and the Cankersaur by Jason Sandberg

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A fun, zany adventure with several learning lessons along the way is what readers will find with Candy and the Cankersaur by Jason Sandberg.

Candy is a wealthy girl who has a father that showers her with gifts instead of spending time with her. She has a next door neighbor named Chucky who every time she gets a new gift, he gets a bigger and better version of what she has. But when Candy’s father buys her a Cankersaur, Chucky can’t seem to one up her. Instead, he decides to get even a different way with some interesting results.

I must start off by saying the humor in this story is great and the intention behind delivering a story with wonderful lessons is admirable. The artwork is superb and matches well with the zaniness of the story. The challenges with this story are related to craft.

The author seems to have bitten off a bit more than he can chew by delivering too many lessons at once: parents needing to spend quality time with their children, understanding why children sometimes mistreat each other, and how working together gets the job done. The story also occasionally drifts away from Candy’s point of view to give the reader a chance to get to know the father’s and Chucky’s internal thoughts. This isn’t something you would typically see in a children’s picture book. The lessons are also delivered in a fashion where they are told to the reader by the narrator more than delivered through the actions of the characters. These are all issues, however, that working with an experienced editor will fix.

In the end, I see a bright future for Sandberg in children’s book publishing. His artwork is amazing and his story ideas compelling. This book has also received numerous 4- and 5-star reviews, so it’s worth checking out this book and more of his work.

Rating:🙂🙂🙂

File Size: 8358 KB
Print Length: 34 pages
Publisher: Jason Sandberg eBooks (June 12, 2012)
Publication Date: June 12, 2012
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
Language: English
ASIN: B00K9H4O8I

The author provided me with free digital copy of this book. This review contains my honest opinions, which I have not been compensated for in any way.

Crystal The Christmas Angel by Theresa Oliver

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Every angel in Heaven is preparing for a big event…except Crystal. They won’t allow her to help because she is too little. But God doesn’t think so. Crystal soon finds herself playing an important role in delivering God’s greatest gift to the world.

Crystal The Christmas Angel by Theresa Oliver is a sweet story centered around the birth of Jesus. It shows how one little angel can make a difference; just like one child can make a difference–even when the adults around her can’t see it. The illustrations by Deanna McRae are beautiful. With its larger size (8.5 x 0.2 x 11 inches) and the artist’s smart use of color, the book is sure to capture the eyes of young people.

Where I believe the book may have some challenges is in the story length, the typographical errors, and its straying away from the documented story of the first Christmas.

While there is no stated age for this book, the standard picture book age is three to eight years old. A sixty-six page picture book, therefore, doesn’t make it ideal for bedtime reading. The book attempts to cover nearly every aspect of the Christmas story instead of focusing on one part of it or condensing the rest of the events to get to the important conclusion.

There are many instances of a missing “w” in the word “was” and at one point the word “stat” is used instead of “star.” When writing for early readers, accuracy is important.

Some adult readers may have issues with the liberties the author takes with the Christmas story. Since I write faith-based fiction for children where fictional characters are integrated into Biblical events, I feel this is something I can truly speak to. I will also attempt to do so without giving away the plot. Crystal’s role in bringing God’s gift to Earth is significant. Her role changes–for lack of a better word–the traditional story we share with our children about the First Christmas. My personal belief is that the author could have shared the same inspiring message with young readers without affecting the integrity of the Biblical story. Stubby’s Destiny by Dixie Phillips shared a similar message (even the tiniest, lowliest of us can make a difference) with readers surrounding the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem on what we call Palm Sunday; and she did so without altering any of the Biblical facts surrounding the event.

That said, the way in which Crystal The Christmas Angel  is written could also engage persons outside of the Christian faith to read it. The message is an important reminder for all of us who sometimes discount a child’s abilities and it will inspire young people to keep trying. It’s definitely a lovely story and worth taking a look at.

Rating:🙂🙂🙂

Paperback: 66 pages
Publisher: Write More Publications; first edition (December 5, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0692600531
ISBN-13: 978-0692600535

I received a copy of this book from the author though Pump Up Your Book. This review contains my honest opinions, which I have not been compensated for in any way.

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