Blogging at 4RV Blog


Every person has their favorite authors and books. Today, at the 4RV Publishing blog, I share some of my personal favorites from this publishing house. You can find the list at

Interview with Anita Banks, author of Tanner Builds a Block Tower

AnitaAnita Banks has lived in Alabama since she was six years old, she raised three children and has  four grandchildren. They are the inspiration for her writing. She likes the adventures and escapes that stories allow you to explore and the myriad of emotions you feel. Anita loves to travel, read and has recently started running.

Thank you for joining us today, Anita. Can you please start off by telling us a bit about yourself?

Thank you for having me here. I am a new author with my first picture book titled, Tanner Builds a Block Tower. I am excited as puppy with a new toy. I am a wife, mother, grandmother. My favorite new activity is running, I started because I needed to get some activity from sitting in a chair for more than nine hours for my day job. I started two years ago, and have found the running community where I live to be a great group of people that are passionate about the sport and are supportive of new runners. I started with a training program to run a 5k and have progressed to three half marathons so far. 

When did you first get bit by the writing bug?

          I have loved reading since my introduction to Dick and Jane and Dr. Seuss. I am constantly reading something all the time. When I was in  junior high school, I had a creative writing class. That was when the writing bug stung me. But when family and life took over, I put the dream aside and just occasionally thought of it.

Why did you decide to write stories for children?

          Probably for the simple joy children’s books give to a reader. I enjoy reading to children and seeing their smiles and their happiness in asking you to read to them. I wanted to contribute to  that happiness. And it’s fun.

Do you believe it is harder to write books for a younger audience?

         I personally have nothing to compare it to, yet. Maybe I will give another genre a try someday. The other writing I do is journaling for myself.

Anita 2What is your favorite part of writing for young people?

          I like the writing, I like putting the words to paper, or rather the screen. They have to be edited  quite a bit before I’m done. But seeing the story unfold on the screen is probably my favorite part.

Can you tell us what your latest book is all about?

Tanner Builds a Block Tower is about a little boy who is determined to build a tower with his blocks. But on the way to his destination he get distracted by different animals and insects. He  also loses some of his blocks. So he has to find them to finish what he started. Determination and perseverance is the theme.

What inspired you to write it?

          The inspiration for this book, was my grandson, Tanner. On a visit when he was about three        years old, he loved to play with his building blocks and build towers, over and over. He was fascinated with this repetitive play. We also went on numerous walks, he loved to explore the outdoors, and still does. So it seemed a natural fit to combine the two activities.  

What is up next for you?

I am shopping out two more picture books, and writing a chapter book right now.

Do you have anything else to add?

          Thank you so much for having me. I hope you enjoy my book.

Thank you for spending time with us today, Anita. We wish you much success.


Abigail by Catherine Rayner


Looking for a unique counting book? Abigail by author/illustrator Catherine Rayner might just fit the bill.

Abigail loves to count. But her friends (Ladybug, Zebra, and Cheetah) never seem to stand still long enough for her to finish. Finally, she finds something to count, but then she learns her friends aren’t so good at counting. What can she do?

How many counting books can you own? My suggestion is you make room for one more, because Abigail is worth it. She’s trying to count spots and stripes, but her friends keep moving on her. Then there are more issues and it takes some ingenuity before all three friends get together for some counting fun.

The design features giraffe spots on the inside front and back covers, plus there is a special flip up page with a neat surprise inside. Rayner uses warm, soft colors that appeal to the eye and create a calming effect. This would make a nice bedtime book or naptime book.

Rating: 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: Tiger Tales (September 1, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1589251474
ISBN-13: 978-1589251472

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

Circus 123 by Guido van Genechten


Guido van Genechten has done it again. Circus 123 is another wonderful book by this talented author and illustrator. Teaching your children to count should always be this much fun. Playful ladybugs perform in the circus: cycling, walking the tightrope, performing stunts, and lifting weights. All leads up to a grand finale with all the performers taking a bow. The black and red bugs stand out against the cream-colored pages.

Your preschooler is going to adore this book.

Rating: 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

Age Range: 3 – 5 years

Grade Level: Preschool – Kindergarten

Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: Clavis Publishing (October 1, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1605371629
ISBN-13: 978-1605371627

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

Soo’s Boo-Boos She’s Got 10! by Tilda Balsley


A unique and adorable new way to learn counting from 1 to 10 and then backwards from 10 to 1. Soo comes into the kitchen complaining to her mother about her numerous boo-boos. Thankfully, mom has a way to take care of each one.

Soo’s Boo-Boos She’s Got 10! by Tilda Balsley is better than your average counting book. It’s clever. It’s creative. From a stiff elbow to crunched toes, from chapped lips to a dripping nose, and from a burned tongue to a nagging mosquito bite and more, Soo goes through her list of ailments. Her sympathetic mom then goes about tackling them one by one, finding the perfect cure for them all.

Kids will relate to this sweet and funny rhyming story. Kids see their moms as fixers of problems and Soo is no different. More than a simple counting book, readers will delight in witnessing Soo’s play for sympathy and learning how her mother solves each problem. The melodic prose is complemented by beautiful artwork from Shelagh McNicholas.

An all-around winner.

Rating: 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

Hardcover: 28 pages
Publisher: Tiger Tales (March 1, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1589251180
ISBN-13: 978-1589251182

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