Professional Book Reviews

Award-winning children’s book author of seven titles, Deanie Humphrys-Dunne, now offers professional, honest book reviews to other children’s literature writers! Each review is published here, on Amazon, and on Goodreads. Fee is $65 per review, which includes the cost of buying your book. All submissions for young readers are welcome. For more information, please email Deanie at dhdunnebooks@gmail.com.

Collected Reviews

Here is a collection of reviews I’ve written about other children’s books.

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The Garden and the Glen by Elizabeth Moseley

Rating: 5 out of 5.

This charming story opens with a beautiful, detailed description of the scene; a bright yellow house, a small vegetable garden and a tree covered by what seem to be unique yellow flowers. You will soon discover the tree was engulfed by many yellow butterflies with a specific assignment.  What did they do? They chased animals or flowers out of the area because they were different.

Imagine how terrified the delicate blue butterfly felt when she was driven out of the garden by a gigantic group of angry yellow butterflies. The gentle blue butterfly flew frantically away from the garden and found sanctuary in the forest. The blue butterfly noticed all of the creatures in the forest were varied. One of her favorite new friends was a bright orange lily, who welcomed her. The furry brown squirrel, the family of deer, the frogs, the fish and every forest resident had one thing in common. They were all rejected by nasty swarm of the yellow butterflies.

A dilemma occurred when the lovely revered Butterfly Queen became ill. At first, no one knew how to cure her malady. But her respected physician discovered somewhere in the garden area there was a flower which contained a powerful medicine. Was the only problem finding the flower? No, the bossy butterfly planned to ruin everything by seizing power once the Butterfly Queen passed away.

The dainty blue butterfly showed exceptional courage in the story. But she wasn’t the only hero. You’ll cheer her on and delight in the solutions the animals create.

What were my favorite parts? I loved when the deer rolled acorns over to the brown squirrel so he could store them for the winter. Another endearing section was when the little squirrel had a mouthful of acorns when she tried to explain she’s been chased away by the yellow butterflies as well.

I highly recommend this enchanting children’s tale. Young readers will be captivated by the story from page one to the end.  There is ample suspense to keep children eagerly turning pages to see what happens next. Not only that, but also, I loved the message the book conveys; we are all special and we should embrace our differences. In addition, readers will see the value of teamwork and how much the characters grew during the story. Finally, I’d like to compliment the beautiful, soft illustrations. They are extraordinary.


Froggy Frog by Sigal Adler

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Froggy Frog” is actually two stories in one, each special for different reasons. Froggy is very excited about the birthday party her older sister is planning. Froggy’s friends came ready to celebrate the big day. Little Froggy received lots of delectable gifts like flies prepared in various ways. But the most amazing present of all was the key Froggy’s big sister gave her. It was a key to a coveted secret place where all sorts of meals were stored in case of a food shortage. Froggy’s sister warned she must be responsible and very careful to protect the key so it wouldn’t fall into the wrong hands. What happens when Froggy loses the key? What decision does big sister make? Does Frogggy learn from her mistakes? It’s a fine, entertaining story that will help little ones learn the importance of responsibility.
In the second story Mrs. Toad and her older sister decide to go shopping because the store was having a big sale. Mrs. Toad was thrilled to buy two pretty shirts for the price of one. She imagined her friends would give her all sorts of compliments on her new purchases. But Mrs. Toad’s sister made a wiser choice, even though hers was much more expensive.
The illustrations are perfect for the story and the rhyming verse is fun to read. I feel these books will be well loved by the little ones and I highly recommend them.

Maximus the Platypus by Andi Cann

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Maximus the Platypus” is a cute, endearing tale about a large baby platypus named Maximus, who has an adoring family. But problems arise when there is a deluge of rain in the river where Max sleeps. Unfortunately, Max’s bed floats down the river and he can’t find his family. Max encounters DeeDee Duck because he thinks she might be related to him. Although she does have a bill and feet similar to Max’s, she assures him that they are not related. Max continues his search and meets Boris the Beaver. Even though Max looks somewhat like the beaver, they are not related either. When Max meets Ollie the Otter, they agree their tails are both wide and flat, but they are not part of the same family. Max is quite distraught because he feels very different from everyone he meets. But his new friends set out to help the little platypus find his relatives. They help Max search and they tell him they are friends and that makes them part of one big family after all.
I thought the story and illutrations were adorable. The illustrations are big and bright. They help you connect with the characters. And I thought the names of the characters were really cute as well. There was a misspelling of the plural of platypus at the end of the book, but I felt the book is otherwise very well done and creative. I believe little ones will certainly enjoy it and want to reread it.

Rating: 1 out of 5.

Mollie’s Magical Tooth by Jana Buchmann

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Mollie’s Magical Tooth” is a cute story about a little girl named Mollie who has a vivid imagination. When she loses her tooth, Mollie asks her teddy bear where the teeth go. She was hoping to keep hers, but when she fell asleep, the tooth fairy, Miss Pearlwirl, appreared, she asked for Mollie to help solve a problem in her magical land. Mollie noticed there were no colors in the tooth fairy’s realm. Mr. Stubby Toes couldn’t find the pot at the end of his rainbow becuase it wasnt’ colored. The river fairies and others had no pretty colors in their lives because everyone lost their imagination. Mollie’s tooth helped fix the problem. The illustrations are big, bright and entertaining. I believe little ones will enjoy this story, especially if they’re about to lose a tooth.
The story shows children the importance of using their imagination. My only criticism is that the print was small and somewhat difficult to read.

Little Boo Saves the Halloween by Agnes Green

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Little Boo Saves the Halloween” is a cute tale about Little Boo, a witch, and her friends. The witch sets out to find the perfect pumpkin for Halloween. Of course, that’s Little Boo’s big holiday so she wants it to be fantastic. Along the way she meets many others who join in the journey. For example, a skeleton, a bat, a ghost, a mummy, and even a green gargoyle join Little Boo in her adventure. The rhymes and illustrations are fun. I believe very young children will enjoy both the story and the pictures. I would have rated it higher if there was a bit more action added to the story. Regardless, it’s well-written and little ones are likely to have fun with it. Parents could discuss the creative way Little Boo solves an important dilemma with the children.

The Witch’s Cat and the Broomstick Blunder by Kirstie Watson

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“The Witch’s Cat and the Broomstick Blunder” is full of fun and entertainment for the little ones. In the beginning, you’ll meet Lovely Witch, a very cute person. She loves practicing zooming around on her broomstick and practicing her magic spells. Lovely Witch decides to take a trip and she reminds Cat, her companion, that he should practice no magic at all during the absence. But Cat is quite curious. He doesn’t look for reading material to help him study how to use the broomstick; he only relies on memory. This creates quite funny adventures and lots of chaos. Cat has problems remembering the proper chants and it results in amusing mistakes. I really enjoyed the illustrations, especially the expressions Cat had during his various escapes. I feel that children will certainly enjoy this story, although it was a bit difficult to read, due to the small print, particularly on pages with the dark blue background. Still, I recommend it.

The Tantrum Monster by Michael Gordon

Rating: 3 out of 5.

“The Tantrum Monster” has very nice, colorful illustrations and an important message about controlling your temper. One of my issues with the story is there are typing errors. Also, although Davy the little monster, knows techniques to help him control his anger, he seems to keep using the same behaviors throughout the book. There doesn’t seem to be an improvement and the story ends apruptly. A bit more editing could have corrected the typos. My opinion is young children would have benefitted more by a story that showed a change in behavior of the main character. And they may also remember the message of the story more easily.

Frizzy Tizzy Goes to the Park by Wendy Hinbest

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Mommy Thinks i’m Yummy and Hokey Pokey by Sigal Adler

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Mommy Thinks I’m Yummy” and ” Hokey Pokey” are entertaining, fun, stories for little ones. Has your mom ever said she loves you so much she could eat you up? Little Tommy dinosaur’s Mom said that to him. She kisses her little boy so much that he complains he “needs a mop for his face.” Also, the story details why several body parts are all important and we cannot do without them. After all, don’t you need your feet to walk, run, and play? Even your eyebrows protect your eyes. The illustratations are bright and entertaining.
The second book is about a baby dragon called Hokey Pokey. At first, the fairies and elves in the town can’t imagine what is inside the huge egg in the forest. But they find out it’s a baby dragon! Soon they come to love the new baby, even though his size and weight can get him in trouble from time to time. And what causes the baby to breathe fire? You must read this endearing tale to find out. Another wonderful book by Sigal Adler.

Frizzy Tizzy Goes tothe Park by Wendy Hinbest

Rating: 3 out of 5.

“Frizzy Tizzy Goes to the Park” is a cute story about a little girl named Tizzy, but everyone calls her Frizzy Tizzy because of hercurly hair. Tizzy asks her dad to take her to the park where Tizzy discovers she is afraid to slide go down the big slide. One problem I have with the story is Tizzy doesn’t show her fear. She only tells a little girl named Emma about her fear. In the end, Emma encourages Tizzy and they negotiate the slide together. After that, they become friends. Of course, it is positive that Tizzy makes a new friend, but the story was so short that a relationship didn’t develop between the two characters. Although the illustrations are colorful, they are small and without a great deal of detail. In my view, it would only earn a three-star rating.

Under the Mango Tree by Valdene Mark

Rating: 4 out of 5.

‘Under the Mango Tree” is a lovely, well-written story about two little girls, Vee and Sanaa who spend much of their time under the mango tree. They climb the tree, looking for the perfect mango to munch on when the fruit is growing. They dream about their future. They love to gaze into the clouds and see the shapes. Sometimes Vee and Sanaa would style their dollies’ hair under the tree. They made so many memories in their favorite spot. But one day Vee and her mom came. They both looked sad because they were moving away. Sanaa missed her best friend very much. But she found something special engraved on the tree which reminded her that thier friendhship would continue no matter where they were. The story tackles a sensitive subject that many children encounter in their lives. I’d have given the book an even highher rating if the author had included questions at the end to help parents and children discuss how to manage changes in their lives. Still, it’s a good story that I recommend.


Yara and the Yellow-Headed Parrots by Yossi Lapid

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Yara and the Yellow-Headed Parrots” is a beautiful tale of a little girl named Yara who loves the Rain Forest and all of its inhabitants. Yara loves watching over parrot parents who built the nest for their little ones very carefully. They put it high on the branch of a tree, hoping their two babies would be safe from all dangers there. Yara noticed a young man with a sack lurking around near the parrot nest. She wanted to know about his plans. Clearly, Yara noticed the young man was sad when he told her the baby birds would bring him a good price. He explained he needed the money to pay doctor bills for his child. Yara offered the man a better plan. She knew someone in the forest who had marvelous healing abilities. How did Yara know such a thing? Because the doctor had healed her of the same disease that plagued the young man’s son. I loved the story. The rhymes were perfect and the message was one all children should hear; It’s important to protect the environment. Not only that, but also, there are often better alternatives to any situation that you may not have considered. As in all of Yossi Lapid’s books, the illustrations are extraordinary. I highly recommend this story to children and families.


Evie Learns to Pray by Daniel B. Lancaster


Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Evie Learns to Pray” is a lovely, well-illustrated book for young children that explains how to communicate with God. I imagine many little ones wonder how to start a conversation with Him. The book explains exactly how to start, in a step-by step manner. If you remember the word Pray, and what each letter represents, according to the author, it’s easy to learn to communicate with your Creator. For example, P stands for Praise. That’s when you thank God for your blessings. R is for right, when you acknowledge the mistakes yoo’ve made. The A reminds children to ask for help for those who need it around the world. And finally, the Y is for Yes, so little ones remember that God has a plan for them and He knows what is best. I enjoyed the book and the creative way it was presented,but it was difficult to read in the Kindle version because the print is small. Still, I recommend this book and feel youngsters will enjoy it and learn from it.

If you Have a Hat by Gerald Hawksley

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“If you have a Hat” is a cure silly rhyming book for the little ones. The rhymes are good and sure to make young children giggle. What would you do if you have a pile of bricks? The author recommends to “Build yourself a tower.” What if you have a hippo? The story says “Put him in the bath.” The hippo picture is one of my favorites. I feel the big colorful illustrations will keep children engaged. There are all sorts of games and riddles at the back of the book to help children test their memories and practice solving puzzles. I love books that help improve children’s skills in many areas, like this one does. I felt the story was somewhat different than I expected because the title made me think of different uses for hats. Still, I recommend this funny and entertaining book.


Hope by Kealy Connor Lonning

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Hope” is a sweet tale written for young children about the author’s aspirations for her family in the future. The rhyming verse is fitting and the illustrations are special because they depict the author’s family members and pets. The story has positive thoughts, which may inspire readers to be kind and loving toward others in their lives. The book is unique because there is also symbolism woven into the story. For example, at the end of the book there are explanations such as the two mourning doves are included because the represent peace and freedom. You will also learn that mourning doves are mates for life. The illustration of eggs in a nest represent new life. The stars help you remember to reach for your dreams. These definitely give the book extra value to children. Though I enjoyed the book and its unique touches, it might ‘ve been even more remarkable if children could have read about suggestions on how to manage life in various situations. Still, I recommend this book and its positive outlook.


Lucas the Lion and the Pirate Ship by Rachael Michaels and Amy Best

Rating: 3 out of 5.

“Lucas the Lion and the Pirate Ship” involves Lucas, and his animal friends. Lucas enjoys showing his pals he’s brave like he did when he scared a hunter away. But Lucas is afraid of the water. When he admitted that to his playmates, they teased him. One day, Lucas tried learning to swim, but he didn’t succeed. Shortly afterwards, his friends were in trouble when they were sailing. Lucas took charge by overcoming his fear in order to save his buddies, but it didn’t seem logical to me that he hadn’t learned to swim before saving his friends. Also, a lesson about being kind might have been incorporated in the story when Lucas’s friends teased him about not knowing how to swim. Although the illustrations were big and colorful, I feel the story could have been better if the problems I mentioned were addressed.


The Good Mood Book by John Arvai lll

Rating: 3 out of 5.

“The Good Mood Book” has bright, colorful illustrations and rhyming verse. In the story, a little girl named Connie has a bad day at school because some of the children were rude. At night, she meets a cute, pink, fluffy monster named Good Mood Gorki. The little creature takes Connie on all sorts of fun adventures. They go to the beach and build sand castles. They travel to space and eat chocolate cookies. Connie and Gorki even go to a roller skating rink for a surpise party. Though the story is cute, I wish there were more details included. What made Connie’s day bad? How did she react? Did the rude children change their behavior? The story would likely improve little tots frame of mind. Very young children will enjoy the beautiful illustrations regardless, but older children might enjoy a story with more substance.


Grandpa’s Lessons on Fishing and Life by Ruthie Godfrey

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Grandpa’s Lessons on Fishing and Life” is a cute, entertaining book with words of wisdom families can share with thier children. The illustrations are cute and engaging and the pages share useful information that readers and their relatives would likely enjoy. For example, it’s important both on fishing trips and in o which would be helpful for readers who are not familiar with fishing.
I enjoyed this book and recommend it highly. Kudos to the author and illustrator.ther life adventures to “Know what to bring.” Wouldn’t children be wise to remember how beneficial it is to “Be teachable” because few people are entralled by someone who seems to know everything. And doesn’t it make you a happier person when you “Share the wealth?” At the end of the book the author includes a glossary of fishing gear, so there’s no need to worry if you’re not familiar with fishing.
I enjoyed this book and recommend it highly. Kudos to the author and illustrator.


My Treasury of Farmyard Tales by Igloo Books Ltd.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

“My Treasury of Farmyard Tales” has gorgeous, soft pastel illustrations which are big and engaging. Each of the stories has a valuable moral. For example, in one of the stort stories, Horse was sad because he was replaced by a shiny new tractor. It seemed that Horse had no important jobs to do. He waited to help the farmer plow the fields, but he was disappointed to learn the tractor did the job instead. One day, there was a terrible storm. When the farmer took the new tractor out to the field, it got stuck in thick, gooey mud. As hard as he tried, the farmer wasnt’ able to free his machine from the mud. But Horse came to the rescue by pulling with all of his might to finally get the tractor out of the mud. As a reward, the farmer gave Horse a cart full of hay, oats and special treats. He explained to Horse that he hoped the new tractor would make life easier for his equine friend, but now he knew his new machine had limits.
There are other tales in the book highlighting things like the importance of keeping secrets. In each of the stories, the farm animals work together to help each other. The reason I gave this book three stars was because the print was difficult to read.


Benny the Biplane by Fritz Carmichael

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Benny was a biplane who first worked during the war. After the war, it was unfortunate that Benny was left in a field with other former war planes. He was sad to have lost his job, but I wish he showed his emotions more. After awhile someone came along and gave Benny a new job working in a carnival. His new fans enjoyed watching him do tricks during the airshows. But when the carnival closed, Benny was unemployed once again. After that, Benny got a very important new job. He dropped food and supplies from the air for people who needed assistance. Benny earned many fans during each of his jobs. The author used real photos of biplanes in the book. I think that’s nice because very young readers can learn something about history. Children who love planes would likely enjoy this book. It’s short and would make a nice bedtime story.


I’m Grateful for…A book About Being Thankful by Uncle Amon

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Uncle Amon does a commendable job at explaining what it means to be thankful; you should be pleased about the blessings you have. In addition, he explains what being grateful means. The author relates a series of short stories with imporant morals. For example, Annie is upset when her big brother, John won’t let her play with him and his friend. But later she remembers how kind John usually is and that he makes her laugh. John was the first to make her feel better when she sprained her wrist.Throughout the book, there are engaging activities you can do to help others understand the value of appreciating your blessings.

I feel that young readers will enjoy this book and find it educational. There are a few pictures, but I believe more illustrations would have made the book even more fun for little ones. Regardless, I recommend this book.


Fish Potatoes by John Donkers

Rating: 5 out of 5.

In  Fish Potatoes a little girl named Lilly mentions her family adores eating fish. Sometimes Lilly would even help her mom make the tartar sauce for the fish. Lilly’s family enjoyed catching fish, and shopping for it in the supermarket.

Lilly’s problem was she absolutely hated fish, even though she never tasted it. Her expression in the book is priceless when she comments she did not like fish. At first, Lilly’s parents tried to trick her into tasting their favorite food. For example, they tried telling her it was chicken, but she wasn’t fooled. Even when they promised her a delectable dessert, she wouldn’t taste a bite of fish. As a last resort, Lilly was sent to her room as a consequence of not eating her fish. Although she thought the punishment was horrid, it surely wouldn’t be as dreadful as munching on a piece of fish.

Would anything change Lilly’s mind? One day Lilly’s beloved Aunt Karie came to visit and stayed for dinner. After Lilly left the table, her mom said she would not need to eat fish tonight but she should eat the beans and mashed potatoes on her plate. Right away, Lilly noticed there was something different about these potatoes. What was it? When Lilly asked for a second helping, Aunt Karie explained she mixed some fish into the mashed potatoes! It was a creative way to introduce Lilly to her family’s favorite dish.

If you have a child who is a discriminating eater, this book is a great way to present a different perspective, while entertaining young readers. How many of us have preconceived notions we don’t like peas because they’re green, or we don’t like broccoli because it looks like a tree? The story is enchanting and the illustrations are so endearing. I highly recommend Fish Potatoes. Kudos to author John Donkers for a job well done.


Njinga of Ndongo and Matamba by Ekiuwa Aire

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Njinga of Ndongo and Matamba is a beautifully crafted historical book about a little girl named Njinga, who nearly died at birth, but she was saved by her father. He had always known his daughter would grow up to do amazing feats.
Njinga was very wise. She became queen of two areas, now called Angola. The queen always tried to put her people and country first. The illustrations are lovely and I enjoyed the extra information and maps at the end of the book. I believe it’s essential to teach children about other cultures and nations. My only suggesiton would be to include pronunciation guides for the African words in the book. I recommend this book for young readers and I feel they will learn many new facts.


The Silliest Dragon by Brian Rathbone

Rating: 3 out of 5.

The Silliest Dragon” is indeed a silly book. The little purple dragon likes to play with bath bubbles and he is never sad, according to the story. It’s sweet that the loves you, but there isn’t a plot to the story. The rhymes are cute so perhaps the story would entertain very young children. But I don’t believe there is enough substance to engage most young readers or listeners. If the book was more detailed, I think it would be improved. Also, games, or riddles, or questions at the end would help little ones learn new things. With all of these factors in mind, I only rated it three stars.


Jade Braves the Dark by Valdene Mark

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Jade Braves the Dark” is a cute story for the little ones about a child who fears the dark. Jade wonders if there are monsters under the bed. What else could be lurking in the darkness? Her eyes are wide with fear as she imagines all sorts of creepy things hiding in her room. The illustrations are lovely and fit the story well. Jade finds a surprising solution to her problem. I felt the story ended a bit abruptly and I would have loved to see questions or other interactions at the back of the book. That would give childen and parents things to discuss and explore. Regardless, it’s a cute, well-written book that I recommend.


Apple’s Big Dream by Jessica Colloco

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Apple’s Big Dream” is a cute story about an apple who would like to be part of an apple pie because he always wanted to be part of a sweet adventure. But things didn’t work out the way Apple expected at first. One day he expected to become part of a pie, but there are missteps along the way. For example, he’s dropped on the floor. A child kicks him and someone steps on him and pushes him into the ground. He becomes very angry, thinking his dream will not come true. But after he stays in the ground for a long time, things begin to change. He feels warm and happy when he sprouts and becomes a beautiful apple tree. People visit and pick apples from his branches. A little girl even sells some of his apples to a store and he does become part of a pie. The story shows children that dreams can come true in ways you don’t expect because disappointing things can happen, but circumstances can change in ways you don’t expect.
Although the pictures are big and bright, the print was quite small making it somewhat difficult to read. Also, some simple questions at the end could help children and parents discuss the story.


The Giraffe who Found its Spots by Adisan Books

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The little giraffe tries very hard to fit in with the other animals in the area. For example, he shows the ostriches he can stand with one leg up. He pretends he has a horn, like the rhinos. No matter which animal he approaches, no one wants to interact with him. The giraffe tries to fit in with everyone so he can make friends. Eventually, the ape gives him some helpful advice-be yourself. Finally, the young giraffe is accepted by the others and attends a party for everyone in the neighborhood. The book conveys an important message; that it’s better to be the unique person you are, instead of trying to imitate everyone else. The illustrations were bright and engaging. In my opinion, the giraffe could have asked some of the animals if he could be their friend, but he didn’t. And I feel it would be easier to relate to the characters if they had names. Still, the book was cute.


You’ve got Gifts by Kristin A. Sherry

Rating: 5 out of 5.

This book encourages children who may feel they have no special talents. A fairy talks to a little girl named Evelyn who doesn’t feel she is good at anyting. But the fairy gives Evelyn examples of many talents like curiosity, caring, achiever, kindess, frienship. The fairy also explains to the little girl that no one has all of these abilities, but we all have some of them. Evelyn begins to recognize some of the gifts she has, such as curiosity. It’s a great book to help children realize they are unique and special. Children who are feeling inadequate are likely to have a different view of their skills after reading this book. The illustrations are bright and engaging as well. I highly recommend it because I feel books that increase self-esteem are important to a child’s happiness and outlook on life.


We can do Everything: Stories for Brave Little Kids by Daniel Gershkovitz

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Daniel Gershkovitz created another literary gem for children and families in this new collection of books called We can do Everything-Stories for Brave Little Kids. There are five stories included in this wonderful compilation.

Here are my comments on each story:

The Elephant who got Bullied:

The story opens with a young fox and bear playing in the forest. Before long they were hungry and decided to look for food. They encountered problems when some of the treats they enjoyed were out of reach. A sweet, thoughtful baby elephant comes along. The fox and the bear are angry that the little elephant can easily reach all kinds of yummy fruits hanging from the trees. The baby elephant does not hesitate to offer to use his trunk to capture the food for the fox and the bear, if they will agree to play with him. But the fox and bear sneer and refuse the elephant’s kind gesture. Instead, they demanded all of the fruit the elephant collected, unless he wanted to be accused of selfishness. The poor little elephant cried, especially when the same thing occurred the next day. He felt hurt and humiliated by the two mean bullies.

Did something change the scenario for our elephant friend? One day the weather was very hot. In fact, it was so hot that a fire started in the forest. All of the animals screamed for help. When the baby elephant heard their cries, he used his trunk to gather water and put out the fires. He was truly a hero and the bullies realized they had been cruel.

The story shares a very important message for children-bullying is never helpful, while kindness is a much wiser option. I loved the wonderful rhymes the author created and his summaries at the end of the story to help young readers remember the message it conveys.

Mommy’s Favorite Planet:

I think readers and families will relate to this book, Mommy’s Favorite Planet because all of the planets long to be their mama’s favorite. I imagine you’ve wondered if your mom had a favorite from time to time.

In Mommy’s Favorite Planet, the frazzled Mom is the Sun and the planets are the children who orbit around her. Each of them presents his or her own argument explaining why that particular planet should be the most valued and adored. For example, Mercury feels he’s the smallest and closest, while Venus insists she has always been the most beautiful. Earth argues that she is the one with lovely trees, insects, and all sorts of animals.  What does Mars think? He pleas that he is named after the God of War and he also has a brilliant red color. Jupiter insists he should be most loved because he is named after the father of all gods. Uranus presents his theory that he’s the palest so he should be most loved.  Even Pluto, who has been declassified and not considered a planet, tells his mom how disappointed he is to be considered less valued than his siblings. Poor Mama Sun finally explains to her children that each of them is equally loved for their different talents and characteristics. She helps her children feel special for their own unique talents.

The Fast Foal:

In the story A Fast Foal, a group of animals live in a forest and seem to get along well. But things change when the Lion, the ruler of the area, announces there will be a special race. What does the winner get for a reward? He or she is the ruler of the kingdom for a year!

One of the members of the community was a little foal. Though he was quite young, he was a talented runner. When the young horse learned about the race, he asked some of the other animals if they thought he could enter. Each of the animals discouraged the baby horse. The giraffe insisted the little horse’s legs were too short, while the snake just advised the foal to go home. Only the turtle explained the other animals were only concentrating on the shortcomings of the little horse. They have not considered his advantages.  Isn’t it a great idea to focus on your talents rather than your flaws?

Sibling Love:

If you have brothers or sisters, you will surely value this tale. Two young raccoons are the main characters of this book, Sibling Love. The pair have argued about everything you can imagine during the course of their lives.  Their parents were patient and loving. One day, the parents decided a change of scenery might help their children stop fighting. Unfortunately, going on an outing didn’t seem to stop the bickering. Even though their parents advised them to stay together, they decided to separate and find new friends.

Suddenly, a fire started. Some of the animals were able to find their way to safety, but they were not able to help the young raccoons who had gathered in the forest with other animals. An owl reassured them that their parents were digging a tunnel to help them escape.  The siblings decided to work together dig a tunnel toward their parents. They escaped the danger and learned important lessons through their scary experience.

Never Shun a Friend:

Never Shun A Friend begins with a group of birds including parrots, cockatoos, parakeets and Ara macaws lived in harmony until a family of toucans opted to settle there.  At first, the other birds were quite curious about what the toucans liked to eat, or what kind of games they liked to play. There was a particular Ara parrot who emerged as the leader. The other birds admired his bright colors. One day the leader stated he wanted to play tag with the other birds. He declared the new young toucan chick would the “it.” At first, the little toucan was shy about joining in, but his parents encouraged him, saying he was smart and fast. During the game of tag, the little toucan tagged the leader on his tail, but the leader was so upset about it, he accused the toucan of cheating and said he would be excluded from the group forever.

The poor little toucan was said and alone, but a dangerous stranger lurked in the bushes and everything changed when the shunned little bird becomes a hero.

Children will love all of these stories and activities related to them. Along with each story is interactive games to test skills like powers of observation, counting and what results you have when you combine certain colors.

I highly recommend these remarkable stories which entertain and educate children,


We can do Anything Coloring Book by Daniel Gershkowitz

Rating: 5 out of 5.

If you have already read the wonderful, rhyming book “We can do Anything: For Brave Little Kids”, the coloring book related to it is the perfect compliment. Even if you are not familiar with the book, your child can meet the characters in the 5 short stories, “The Shy Chameleon,” The Arrogant Toad,” “The Friendly Scorpion,” “The Forgiving Beaver, and the Curious Chick.” There are hours of fun and learning in this coloring book. Children and their families can read the back cover and learn about the corresponding book. The beautiful coloring book contains over 45 beautiful pages to color. I highly recommend it.


We can do Anything by Daniel Gershkowitz

Rating: 4 out of 5.

We can do Anything: Stories for Brave Little Kids by Daniel Gershkovitz is a wonderful collection of stories for young readers. Not only will the endearing, rhyming tales entertain children, but each tale shares an important lesson of value for children and families. Additionally, there are wonderful games to improve skills like counting and observation abilities. There are plenty of activities included in the book to keep children engaged.

The first story is called The Shy Chameleon. You will see that the little chameleon is distressed because she thinks she is without talents. While she recognizes talents in her friends, she thinks there is nothing unusual about the way she can easily change colors to blend in with her surroundings. But one night a hungry fox snuck in to the barnyard, intending to eat the adorable bunny and unsuspecting hen. Who would save the day? Finally, the chameleon became a proud hero.

Next, children will meet an over confident toad who feels he’s far too important to play with slow, ordinary animals like turtles. Not only that, but the toad even teases the fish because they had no arms or legs. In spite of the toad’s unreasonable attitude, his friends warned him when a drought dried up the local pond. Does the rude toad change his behavior when he stares at the mud that was once the pond?  This story reminds little ones to keep their minds open to different ideas. Great advice, don’t you think?

The Friendly Scorpion describes how unfair life can be when others have an idea that because you are a certain type of person, or animal, you always behave in a certain manner. Because scorpions have a deadly sting, the other animals ran in fear each time they encountered a baby scorpion who tried his best to be friendly. Naturally, the little scorpion was upset no matter whether he met a turtle or frog, or any other animal, they all felt it was far to dangerous to spend time with a scorpion. However, something happens to change their opinion when the scorpion intervenes in a situation and creates a positive outcome. Children will see it’s not wise to prejudge others, a valuable lesson indeed.

The Forgiving Beaver stars a friendly little beaver who wants to play with a young elk. However, the elk feels the little beaver could never keep up with such a strong, stately animal as an elk. The elk even remarked that the beaver had big teeth that stuck out.  The Elk’s friends- the wolf, the raccoons and others in the group all laughed at the beaver’s request. When a powerful storm approached, the elk needed help, but all of his acquaintances refused to find a solution. Only the beaver had a brilliant idea to save the day.

The story called The Curious Chick involves a baby chick that wants to explore the world. During his adventure, he and his siblings anger an old, grumpy cat. Though the chicks didn’t intend to hurt the elderly feline when they tossed corn at him, they ended up infuriating the cat once he’s pelted with several pieces of corn. The young chicks told their mom how sorry they were for angering the cat and Mom listened patiently to their explanation.

Eventually, one of the chicks decides to explore the area at night, searching for someone who would show him affection. He gets into a dangerous predicament, but his mom races to his aid. The story illustrates to readers that even when you misbehave, your parents love and guide you through your trials.

Each of these stories is enchanting and the rhymes are perfectly created. I think children will treasure these tales and learn a great deal. The stories can be shared at bedtime, or anytime. The illustrations are bright and engaging. I found the stories enchanting and I liked the fact that the author carefully explains the moral of each tale at the end. I highly recommend these tales and I feel Mr. Gershovitz is a gifted author who offers children many chances to learn things, while having fun. My only minor criticism is that I think some of the vocabulary is too advanced for very young children. But I feel strongly that the stories will build self-esteem in children, which will help them meet whatever challenges they face.


Eve’s Ducklings by Maria Monte

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Eve’s Ducklings is an adorable, gentle story of a little girl who loves exploring the outdoors with her grandpa. The author mentions in the dedication that she had an experience with ducks when she was little and she shared that memory with many others.

In the tale, little Eve longs to hold a baby duck and play with it. She tries to reach the little ducks swimming in the pond, but the tiny birds flee. In the meantime, grandpa warns her to be careful not to upset the Mama duck. Eve is discouraged she can’t play with the ducklings so she and grandpa spend time in the park instead.

Later in the story, Eve has a different idea and the baby ducks enjoy their surprise as well. This little book shows young children how important it is to show kindness to animals. It’s a lovely tale and the illustrations are cute and engaging. It’s the perfect bedtime story little ones will treasure. Children and parents may also notice that if you don’t reach your goal at first, you may succeed by changing tactics.

Congratulations to Maria Monte and Emilie Wiklund for a job well done.


The Grandpigs get Fit by Karen Hanvik

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“The Grandpigs get Fit” is an adorable, fun book about Granny and Grandpa pig who are overweight from eating too many sweet treats. They decide to start a fitness routine. Granny tries diving, but her hair gets very frizzy. Grandpa tries rock climbing until he remembers he’s afraid of heights. Granny decides going to the gym might be perfect for her until she gets way too sweaty. Grandpa tries skateboarding but he finds the tricks are too challenging. Finally, Granny and Grandpa Pig remember how much fun biking was for them in the past so they get a tandem bike. They have lots of fun and get fit. Everyone admires them. The story has a great message that you can find ways to exercise that are fun as well. I highly recommend this book. It’s sure to entertain readers while they learn important things.


Alice Eloise’s Silver Linings by Sarah Kathryn Frey

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Alice Eloise is a very cute puppy who meets a special young lady. Little Alice Eloise loves being silly, excited and happy, but when she meets the special lady the little dog must learn to concentrate on her jobs as a service dog. The author carefully explains the jobs a service dog can help with. After her training is finished, Alice Eloise must take a test to be sure she is qualified and prepared to become a service dog. During the test, the young dog becaomes tempted to misbehave, but she realizes how important it is to focus on her tasks. She passes the test and she celebrates along with her owner. The author carefully explains the duties of a service dog. There is also more information about the medical challenges Ms. Frey faces at the back of the book, along with a section of questions and answers by Alice Eloise herself.
The illustrations are lovely and the story is inspiring and informative for young readers. I believe readers will not only enjoy the book, but learn valuable things from it. One of those important lessons is the way a positive attitude can help all of us find a silver lining in whatever obstacles we face in life. I highly recommend this book.


Zippy and Zappy go on an Adventure by Renju Sridhar

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Zippy and Zappy are lady bugs, or lady birds, who are also best friends. For quite a while they live happily in a cornfield. At first, they enjoy their lives, but when they feel bored, the little beetles look for adventure away from home. They enjoy a ride in a big truck. They love sampling apples from the tree. But their adventure is not without serious challenges. For example, what happens when Zippy and Zappy’s outing in a swimmng pool is interrupted by a hungry frog? What happned when Zappy was caught by a dragonfly? Zipppy had to be creative and think quickly to save her friend.
There are fine examples for heroism, friendship, and bravery in the story. I feel young children will enjoy both the tale and the lovely, bright, illustrations. Parents, teachers and families can enjoy discussions about the events in the book. I recommend it highly.


Pickerton’s Jiggle by Riya Aarini

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Pickerton was a cute little pig who was most concerned about cleanliness. He bathed every day and kept his house spotless. It’s definitely not what you’d expect from a pig, is it? The rhyming verse is cute, and the illustrations are colorful and interesting. One day, PIckerton gets very dirty. At first, he’s extremely upset, but he finds a creative way to solve his problem. I’d have enjoyed the story even more if the little pig had some interaction with others. Still, the story is cute and shows young readers a way to get their emotions under control when they are upset. Little ones may also learn they can change their attitude about things and become more relaxed.


The Painted Pony by Angharad Thompson Rees

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Stargazer was a carousel pony. He loved having children enjoy their rides with him. But one day a little boy named Sebastian went on the ride and told Stargazer about real ponies and the adventures they had. Sebastian described ponies who roamed free and frolicked in the fields. This made Stargazer think his life was boring. He longed to be free. Sebastian explained how to become free of the carousel. From then on, the two friends had many adventures. It’s a well-written story, but short. In my opinion, children and families would enjoy it even more if bright, colorful illustrations were included and the story was longer.


Do not wish for a pet Ostrich by Sarina Siebenaler

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Do not wish for an Ostrich for a Pet” is a creative, fun tale about a little girl who searches for the right pet. She considers a dog, but she remembered dogs can chew your shoes into tiny pieces. How about a cat? One of her friends had one who slept all day. Finally, the young girl decided on an ostrich. Was that a good choice? What happened when she fed her pet many apples? He did seem to enjoy them, until they got stuck in his throat. She called the vet who advised her to feed the ostrich lots of butter to make the apples slide down her pet’s throat. What kind of adventure did the two of them have when she took her big bird out for a walk? It certainly was memorable. The rhymes were very good and I loved the big illustrations and the entertaining questions at the end to see how well children remembered the story. I highly recommend it.


Emerald the Mermaid by Mary K. Smith

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Emerald the Mermaid” is cute story about Emerald, a kind mermaid. She is bullied by other mermaids and animals in the kingdom. The other mermaids and dolphins were jealous of Emerald’s beauty and even her unique green hair. The message of the story is important, but I didn’t care for the wordy writing style, or the illustrations, which were unremarkable. In my view, very young children would not understand some of the words and would lose interest. Bigger, more engaging illustrations would have helped little ones to keep turning pages.


Easter with Snowman Paul by Yossi Lapid

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Easter with Snowman Paul” is another, amazing, and entertaining story featuring Snowman Paul and his friend, Dan. This time, Snowman Paul begs Miss Hen for one of her eggs so he can enter a egg coloring contest. At first, Dan couldn’t imagine entering a cracked egg in a contest. But Snowman Paul insisted the egg was special and would win. The story conveys important messages to children. Like with a little imagination, a lot can be accomplished. And things are not always the way they appear. What do you think happens next? It’s a wonderful story with perfect rhyming verse and bright, beautiful, illustrations. Children and their families are sure to love it. I highly recommend it.


Chickens Can’t Count (Silly Chickens) by E. B Adams

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Chickens Can’t Count (Silly Chickens)” is a humorous story about a chicken named Pecky who has quite a dilemma; her eggs keep disappearing. Pecky decides it would be helpful to count her eggs so she could keep track of them. But other members of the family-Roo, Fluffy, Gertrude and others, try convincing her that counting is not permitted. Pecky becomes so frazzled that she decides to move her family away. Still, her eggs keep disappearing. Who is taking them? What does Pecky do next? She tries diligently to solve her problem. Preschool and young children are likely to giggle when they read this story and see the creative illustrations. I enjoyed the story. My thoughts are a coloring page would have enhanced the story. Still, it is an entertaining tale.


Blank Space by Beth Bacon

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Blank Space “is a very creative book, sure to intrigue reluctant readers. A young student must write a journal about what he likes most about books and reading. The student comments that he doesn’t choose a book because of its cover, or title. What he loves most are the blank spaces, in places like the margins, or between the chapters. He feels that the blank spaces give him a chance to take a breath and enjoy the events of the book. The way the story is written is unique and I think it will interest children who are not fond of reading. It’s a great way to encourage children to use their imaginations. Also, I feel readers will cheer for the student when he finally makes his presentation to his class. At first, his classmates think his ideas are silly, but how do they feel at the end of his remarks?


Milo and Cat Right Before Sleep by Miro Tartan

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Milo and Cat Right Before Sleep” is a cute, funny story I think children will enjoy. The big, detailed, illustrations are beautiful. There are lots of suggestions on how to fall asleep that little ones will enjoy. Cat keeps encouraging Milo that they will find a solution to why he can’t sleep. For example, Milo tries wearing warm socks. He drinks a big cup of warm milk. He reads. Still, he is not sleepy. In the end, they forget to do one important thing, which might surprise the readers.I think young readers will find the story delightful. However, in my view, it’s perfect for younger children, maybe 5-8, although this depends on the reading level of the child, which varies. The story is well-written and very creative.


The Elephant who got Bullied by Daniel Gershkovitz

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“The Elephant who got Bullied” is a wonderful, captivating and educational book for children. They will adore the bright, entertaining illustrations and the perfectly rhyming verse. As a bonus, they will enjoy the games at the end which will sharpen skills in areas like observation and counting. I highly recommend this book. As with the other books by Daniel Gershkovitz, this little gem encourages children, builds confidence, and reminds them how hurtful bullying can be.


Pinky Ponky Wants to go to the Moon by Nirosha Paramanathan

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Pinky Ponky is a little girl with a big dream. She wants to fly to the moon! When Pinky has a big dream, sometimes she becomes very excited about it. But in this case, her friends kept discouraging her and she did have obstacles to overcome along the way. How would she get there? What if she got lost? How could she prepare for her trip? But Pinky kept thinking she could find a way if she believed in herself. She used positive affirmations to remind herself that she could help her dream come true, even when people, or friends, discourage her. I felt the story shared important messages about building confidence in your abilities and listening to your intuitions. I felt there were a couple of places where more editing was needed, but the story would still be fun and educational for children. Also, parents and teachers could find the questions and information at the end helpful in discussions.


Wheel Power by Sigal Adler

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Wheel Power:” is another endearing, adorable tale for preschoolers. In this story, little Wheely is by himself, without friends, or even a job. He tries to fit in. He hopes to fit on a bus, so he’d have an important job to do for the children. But he’s too small. He tried to fit on a boat, but was the wrong size. He applied for all sorts of jobs, but he was discouraged to have searched without success. Still, he was brave and never gave up in his quest to fit in. Finally, Wheely is thrilled to find just the right important job where he was appreciated and honored. It’s the perfect story for little ones because they’ll see how important it is to be yourself and have faith you will find the job and life meant for you. As always, the rhymes were perfectly presented and the illustrations are beautiful.


Millie’s Magic by Hilary Hawkes

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Millie’s Magic” is a lovely little tale for preschoolers and early readers. In the story, Millie searches high and low for a gift for her grandpa’s birthday. She decides to look for magic so she climbs mountains, floats on logs and looks in every area the little animal characters recommend. But despite her best efforts, Millie is disappointed not to find any magic to present to her grandfather. Finally, she asks grandpa for his thoughts about magic and he has a surprising response. Millie is delighted. I think the illustrations were adorable, perfectly suited for the story. Not only that, but the message it shares is important as well. The games at the end are a good way for young children to interact with the story.


Mozzi Presents: My Friends Help People by Merav Gamliel Boschan

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Mozzi Presents: My Friends help People” is an interesting, educational series of stories about how many ways dogs can help improve peoples’ lives. For example, a dog named Mozzi helps his owner, Danny to overcome his fear of dogs. Slowly, Danny learns to trust Mozzi and they play together.

Amber and her service dog, Johnny, work well together because Johnny helps Amber with tasks she can’t do from a wheelchair. He makes life so much easier for Amber when he is able to get things for her and carry things for her.

A little boy named Ronnie has a speech impediment so he’s very shy. But Maple helps him to gain confidence and make friends.

Jack has a guide dog named Lola. She guides him every where he goes because he is blind. Lola makes sure that Jack is safe when he is crossing the street. She watches out for him everywhere they go.

Shelly goes to agility class with her friends Mozzi, Blackie, Arrow and Yvonne. They learn how to negotiate different obstacle courses quickly .

This is a good book for children because they learn various ways dogs can help people live better lives while they have fun together.


Pool Party (Dottie Dots the Cat books) by Ashley Madden

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Pool Party” is a cute story for preschool children. Dottie is a cat who loves swimming, but she is afraid her friends will laugh at her because cats aren’t known to enjoy the water. When Dottie’s friend, Andy, asks her to a pool party, Dottie is not sure she should accept. It’s a good story to introduce children to fear and how to overcome it, but I think the story would have been more enjoyable if Dottie showed her fears more. Still, little ones will like the big, bold illustrations and could understand the problem described in the book. It would be a good story to discuss with your very young children so they understand that fears can be overcome.


The Big Adventures of a Little Tree by Nadja Springer

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Big Adventures of a Little Tree: Tree Finds Friendship” is a cute tale about a tree who wants adventure. At first he tries hard to move his roots, but does not succeed. How will he reach his goal of exploring more of the neighborhood? Tree finds help from a group of birds who pull and tug on his branches to help him move. In his new location, Tree makes new friends and seems pleased. Children love him and they help him relocate when winter comes. The story has adorable illustrations to help keep little ones engaged. Also, it conveys important messages regarding friendship and dedication. Children will see that just because something hasn’t been tried, doesn’t mean it’s not possible. The rhyming text is well done and easy for children to understand.
I think the book would have been even more enjoyable if some outlines were included that children could color. Still, it is a fun and enjoyable, well-written tale I recommend.


Shadow and Friends Costume Party by S. Jackson, A. Raymond and M. Schmidt

Rating: 5 out of 5.

As his name implies, Digger, the squirrel, specialized in digging. He loved digging around in Mr. Schmidt’s yard, especially near his favorite tree. Mr. Schmidt was careful to put fresh dirt around the tree every day and he even hid special treats like walnuts and peanuts in the dirt so Digger could search for them. One day, Digger found a treasure chest full of costumes.Digger learned about costumes from his Uncle Stubby. Together, they decided to invite all of the neighborhood animals to a costume party. The costumes were cute and creative. In fact, even Digger didn’t recognize his grandpa dressed in his costume. You’ll be surprised to find out which animal grandpa represented. The little animals made new friends as well. “Shadow and Friends Costume Party” is en entertaining tale sure to delight young children and their families. I enjoyed it and recommend it.


Ara the Star Engineer by Komal Singh Page

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Ara is a little girl who loves science computers. Young readers will discover lots of information in this book such as what is a googol? How do you define an algorithm? The book explains an algorithm is similar to a recipe. Readers will learn that if you want to solve a big problem, the first step is making a plan. Ara writes the steps she needs to follow when she wants to create an algorithm to count stars. Ara learns that computer experts communicate with their computers by using specific codes, or languages.
Although the book is recommended for 5-7 y ear-old readers, I am not sure they would understand some of the vocabulary. But I feel it would be suitable for older readers and they would find the information beneficial. The Kindle version of the book had small print and illustrations, which make it slightly difficult to read. I thought the glossary at the end of the book was an excellent review of the information discussed in the book.


What’s the Worst that Could Happen? by Yewande Daniel-Ayoade

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Rating: 5 out of 5.

This is a story many children will understand because they have similar issues. Kayla is a shy little girl. She was afraid to approach the other children in her third grade class. How would they react? Every time she thought about speaking with the other girls, she was overcome with fear and didn’t take action. She didn’t face her fears, like her grandma advised. Grandma told Kayla to consider what the worst outcome would be. Finally, Kayla faced her fears and she was astounded at how her classmates reacted. I enjoyed this story and I’d recommend it. Children will see what can be done to overcome fears. Many opportunities may arise once you take the first step.
When I was growing up, my dad gave me exactly the same advice about imagining the worst that could happen. in my experience, it helped me face several situations and learn they weren’t as scary as I’d expected. The illustrations were wide and engaging as well.


How to Sleep with Cowardly Sheep by Sigal Adler

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Do you have little ones who have trouble falling asleep? This new picture book “How to Sleep with Cowardly Sheep” can help them enjoy bedtime without fears. In the story, a little monster can’t sleep so he asks for his parents’ advice. They tell him the easiest solution is to count sheep. Thinking that would surely help, the monster expected to see dozens of fluffy sheep leaping about. But when the little monster saw them, the sheep were so afraid, they’d run off screaming. Naturally, the young monster was very sad because the monsters were so frightened. They never got to know him. Feeling discouraged, the monster spoke to his parents again. This time they said regular sheep were not the right fit. The little monster needed a special type of sheep to help him sleep soundly. I think little ones and their families will enjoy reading this story. The rhymes are fun and the pictures are bold and colorful. I recommend it highly.


Button Goes to the Doctor by Joyce Mitchell

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Button goes to the Doctor” is a cute story for preschool children, or early readers. When Button, the adorable puppy, visits the doctor he walks through the woods with his friend, who reminds him to bring his raincoat. She also tells Button to be careful when they cross the street on the way to Dr. Pig’s office. Dr. Pig is very welcoming and cheerful. At first, Button may have been nervous because he barked his answers to Dr. Pig’s questions. But eventually, he was comfortable with speaking with Dr. Pig. The doctor gives Button a cookie for his reward at the end of his visit. This little tale will help young children learn what to expect from a visit to the doctor.The story was short, with cute illustrations to keep little ones interested. I recommend this tale. It’s another wonderful story by Joyce Mitchell.


Cinderella Sarah by Karen Cossey

Rating: 3 out of 5.

‘Cinderella Sarah” is a group of short stories for children. Some of them share helpful lessons, like not putting things off for another day. The first story in the collection was about a young girl named Sarah. It’s similar to “Cinderella.”Although the stories are short enough to share at bedtime, I think the vocabulary in most of the stories would be too advanced for a five-year-old. In addition, I felt the book could benefit from more editing. If there were illustrations for young readers, I feel they would have a connection with the characters.


Amelia the Mouse: Inventor Extraordinaire by J.W. Kohler

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Amelia the Mouse: Inventor Extraordinaire” is entertaining and encouraging. Readers will meet Amelia, a very cute, creative mouse who loves to invent things to help her friends. In the story, she meets Winston the rat, who uses a cane. Winston’s problem is the cane gets stuck in holes while he’s walking. He needs something to prevent that from happening. Amelia works diligently to come up with creative solutions. Some are not practical, but she perseveres until she finds just what Winston needs. The story was well-written and engaging. In my opinion, the print was a bit small, but regardless, it’s a good book that conveys a message to children that they should persevere. I think readers will enjoy it.


The Silent Shepherd by Patricia Moore

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Patricia Moore’s story, “The Silent Shepherd” is a wonderful, enlightening children’s tale about a little boy named Aaron and his dad, who is a shepherd. Aaron was very sad that he couldn’t speak because he thought he’d never be able to help his dad. The young boy thought he was a disappointment to his father. An angel appeared to Aaron and is father, explaining that Jesus was born in Bethlehem. In the end, something remarkable occurs. This is a story of hope that I recommend. The reason I gave it four out of five stars was I felt the story would have been even more captivating if the characters showed their feelings more often to draw the readers into the story. I enjoyed the big, colorful illustrations. This story conveys an important message that children would likely enjoy and find beneficial.


Button Goes to Hollywood by Joyce Mitchell

Rating: 5 out of 5.

In this endearing tale for preschoolers, “Button Goes to Hollywood” you’ll take the adventure with the little puppy, Button. What happens after he wins the talent show? Why did Button bounce around in the airplane? Little ones will see how star puppies get treated because Button gets a special haircut after he becomes a star. He wins a beautiful trophy. Reporters love interviewing the new sensation. Button loves the attention. He even seems comfortable walking on the red carpet! Take the adventure with Mr. Button, the Hollywood star. I recommend it for preschool children and beginning readers. I think they’ll love meeting Button and learning what happens when he becomes a star. It’s a cute story and a salute Joyce Mitchell for another charming tale.


Do it Again: Otra Vez by Ana Morris

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Do it Again/Otra Vez” is full of fun and learning for young children and their families. I loved the vivid illustrations, as well as the fact that the book is written in English and Spanish so if you are learning Spanish, you can check those sentences against the English translation.  In the story, little Amy spends the night with her Auntie and Uncle. She eagerly watches a football game, while searching for her cousin. Amy loves being tossed into the air by her Uncle Dale. She giggles when her uncle talks like Donald Duck.  It’s an entertaining and educational story for children and adults.  I  admire Ms. Morris’ many talents.I highly recommend her remarkable story.


Chickie and the Great Barnyard Benefit by Bee Urabazo

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Chickie and the Great Barnyard Benefit is an adorable tale you won’t want to miss. When a baby chick named Chickie finds a home on Stagecoach Lane, he meets some new animal friends.  Chickie’s friends suffer during a big storm so they plan a benefit show to help the victims. What happens when nasty Derek Lambcelot acts like he’s the only one who has talent? What if the talent show is a failure? Chickie wants to perform in the show, but will he be laughed off the stage?

I loved the story itself and the beautiful ending. The illustrations were beautiful and there is plenty of suspense throughout the book.

This is a wonderful tale for parents and families. Children will adore it and they will benefit from learning about developing your talents, coping with varied personalities, and overcoming obstacles. I give it my highest recommendation.


The Power of Gratitude by Leibny Hope:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Have you ever wondered what gratitude means and why it’s important? This book explains why gratitude is a feeling that can transform your life. For example, you will see how being grateful can improve your social life by helping you connect with people. You will learn how gratefulness can help you in many situations.
Did you know the hypothalamus is the part of your brain that controls many of your body’s functions such as sleep, appetite, and growth? Psychologists believe when you feel unhappy, stress and depression will dominate your life. Who wants to spend your precious life feeling sad? Are you aware that gratitude can work like a natural antidepressant by releasing two neurotransmitters called dopamine and serotonin? Neurotransmitters are your brain’s chemical messengers. When you feel appreciative of the wonderful things and people in your life, it will brighten every aspect of your existence.
Feeling grateful can also improve not only your mental status but also your physical well-being. In fact, feeling appreciative can help prevent such ailments as high blood pressure and other heart problems. Feeling fulfilled can improve your immune system as well.
This book explains how to focus on the things you’ve neglected, like the beauty of nature. Do you remember being a child who loved the wonder of flowers and butterflies? This book will show you how to appreciate these things again and why it’s important to your life.
What are some of the other benefits of this book? You will learn new skills to help you incorporate gratefulness in your daily living. For instance, how do you write a thank-you note and why is it important? Will it only benefit you, or the recipient as well? How can you be the proper role model for your children so they learn the importance of being thankful for your blessings? The chapter on raising children to look for the positive aspects of life was one of my favorite parts of the book because children are our future.
There are simple exercises you can do daily and track how they change your attitude about your life. This step by step plan can easily be added to your routine.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and found it most beneficial. I will be implementing some of the suggestions in my own life. This book will help you to cope when unfortunate events occur in your life, and treasure the gleeful times more than you imagined. I give The Power of Gratitude my highest recommendation.


ABC Alphabet Animals at Bedtime by Aaron Adams

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The ABC Alphabet Animals at bedtime is a cute story with big, bright, appealing illustrations. I liked some of the verses more than others and the story may be slightly less appealing because preschool children may not be familiar with some of the animal characters. Still, it’s an enjoyable adventure and very young children can learn the alphabet more easily with this book. They will chuckle at some of the bedtime outfits the animals wear. I thought the illustrations were very cute and creative.


Where Dragons Fly by Hannah Sparks

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Where Dragons Fly” is an enjoyable tale for early chapter book readers. Ethan is a lonely little boy who doesn’t make friends easily. He’s generally lonely during the time when his dad is working. But one day dad brings home a pair of glass dragons with magical powers. When Ethan holds them, he is transported to an amazing place called Steorra. While visiting there, Ethan meets a penguin, and a mischievous fairy. He revels in all sorts of adventures with his new friends in Steorra.
In between trips to Steorra, Ethan meets his neighbor, Amelia. Like Ethan, she is not accepted by other children. But she and Ethan travel to Steorra together and develop a friendship. They find things in common and they understand each other’s feelings. I think children will enjoy this story and relate to the characters. It does have illustrations which are detailed and well done, but I feel that color pictures would have made the pictures more engaging for children. Regardless, it’s a fun tale with a great deal to offer young readers.


Who Wants to Play With Little Mouse? by Jana Buchmann

Rating: 4 out of 5.

One day Little Mouse is lonely so he decides to explore his neighborhood and enjoy his adventures. He expected to play with some of his friends. But things didn’t go as planned. For example, when he sees the ants scampering through the grass, he tried to capture their attention, but they don’t notice him. Unfortunately, the spiders enjoying their web in the sunlight don’t notice him either Each book has a number corresponding to the number of little creatures on the page so little ones can practice counting from one to ten. Not only that, but they can also count backwards. The pictures are entertaining and the rhymes are cute. It seems the book should be interactive with music, but in order to enjoy the music, I think you need to purchase something to go along with the book. That is the reason I didn’t give it a 5-star rating. Still, it’s a fun book for very young children.


Lily Lemon Blossom by Barbara Miller

Rating: 3 out of 5.

I thought the illustrations were engaging and the rhyming verse was cute, but the story was lacking. The author describes Lily’s room and how she spends her day with her cat, Josephine, but there isn’t much action or any conflict involved. In my view, the story would be improved if Lily had a problem to solve, along with action to engage young readers. I liked the fact that the book mentioned Lily liked keeping her room clean, which is a good message for little ones.


The Jungle Crew by Emma Scott

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“The Jungle Crew” is a cute story. I enjoyed the rhymes, as well as the message. In the beginning, the Lion was sad and lonely without any friends. Other animals where afraid when they saw his size and his sharp teeth. The Lion meets a sad hippo who is also lonely. At first, the lion thinks the Hippo is odd because she is pink and fat. But he decides she is fun so she becomes his pal. Along the way, the lion meets other animals that join his crew such as a giraffe, a comical toucan, an elephant, a zebra and a monkey. The lion discovers each of his new friends has their own assets and personality. The message is an important one for little ones to learn. In my opinion, the story would be even more fun if with more action. Although the illustrations are cute, they might have shown each animal’s personality a bit more.


Marvin the Very Tall Bear by T. A. Unwin

Marvin the Very Tall Bear by [T. A Unwin]

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Marvin was a very tall fellow. Because of his size he could see the whole town and he could reach most anything when he wanted to take it off the shelves. But Marvin decided he’d rather be average size so he wished for that with all of his might. One morning he woke up and his wish came true. At first, he was pleased when his dream came true. But he missed some of the things he did before and he didn’t like being exactly like the other bears. The message is a good one for young children, but the story seemed to end abruptly and I felt the pictures could have been more prominent.


Bubsimouse Visits Grandma and Grandpa by Siegfried Freudenfels

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Bubsimouse takes a trip with his grandma and Grandpa. His grandparents are good examples for him. They find ways to amuse him on their journey and grandpa gives Bubsi a special gift to use on the trek. The family spends time at a castle. Bubsi learns about a legend connected to the castle. He also enjoys the paddle boat trip, even though his boat got stuck in the sand and needed some creative solutions to free it. The illustrations were cute, but a bit small. There were also some mistakes in punctuation. I felt there were a couple of places in teh story where Bubsi could have showed his emotions more when exciting things happened. But the story was still enjoyable and should be entertaining for young readers.


Hopper and the Roller Coaster by Amy Best

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Hopper and the Rollercoaster” is a cute story about a bunny named Hopper who has many friends,but also one big fear. Hopper is afraid of rollercoasters so he makes all kinds of excuses when his friends want to visit the new amusement park in his neighborhood. He goes to great lengths not to show his pals that he is afraid of that particular ride. But eventually, he has no choice but to face his fear when his friend, Shannon, invites him to her party. Something unexpected happened and Hopper overcomes his fear and becomes a hero.
The story has a good message for young readers because it shows them bravery doesn’t mean not being afraid, but facing your fears. I think young readers will enjoy the story and the illustrations. Toddlers would probably not understand some of the vocabulary, though. It would be a good book for children in early elementary grades.


Bell’s big Move by Tom Shay Zapien and Matt Wiewel

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Bell’s Big Move” is a cute story about a little girl named Sophia and her dog, Bell. Sophia and her little dog do everything together. For example, Sophia loves taking Bell to the grooming place so the groomers can make Bell look especially adorable. But Sophia and her puppy are sad when they move away. Naturally, they miss their friends. And even the weather is different from their old location. But soon after moving to the new town, Sophia and Bell make a new friend named Andrew, who takes them around town and introduces them to friendly people. Everyone welcomes Andrews new friends both Sophia and Bell feel more comfortable in their new home. The story will help young children feel more comfortable if they are preparing to move. The illustrations are well done and i feel children will enjoy the pictures as well as the story. The book is advertised as interactive when you read it aloud, but you need to purchase something else in order for that to work.


The Golden Life of Sally Sunflower by Imani Ariana Grant

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“The Golden Life of Sally Sunflower” is educational and entertaining. The bright illustrations are appropriate for the story. Young readers will learn how to care for a seedling. Why is water important to Sally Sunflower? What is pollination? Why does Sally change her position when the sunlight changes? What is pollination and why is it important to Sally?There is a great deal of helpful information that readers will enjoy in this book. I also enjoyed the “Fun Facts” at the end and the chart you can use to track the growth of your plant if you decide to grow one. Highly recommended.


Mio the Blue and Orange Cat: Mio’s Snow Day by Samir Saachi

Rating: 3 out of 5.

“Mio’ the blue and Orange Cat: Mio’s Snow Day,” was a cute story with bright illustrations that would engage very young children. In the book, Mio, the kitten loves snow and he wishes for a snow day so he can play in it. .Finally, his mom wakes him up early because it snowed during the night. Of course, Mio is thrilled. He asks his mom to help him build a snowman. They create a cute snowman together. Mio collects stones, and twigs to build his eyes and whiskers. He even adds ears and a tail to his snowman. That was creative of Mio, don’t you think? What was lacking in the story was editing to fix the punctuation errors. Also, I think adding some outlines for little ones to color would have made the book even more fun.


Cassidy and the Rainy River Rescue by Keeley Chace

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Cassidy and the Rainy River Rescue” is a cute story for very young readers. Cassidy is a small pony, who is polite to a fault. When she tried to help her canine friend, Ranger, round up the cows, Cassidy called one ‘Ma’am.” That made me giggle. Although that particular cow didn’t obey Cassidy, something else happened that allowed Cassidy to be a hero. Children will see how everyone has different talents and it’s good to work together. I love the illustrations, but the book didn’t seem to be interactive,as stated. Also, I felt that the readers would identify more with “Cassidy’s girl” more if she had a name. Still, the story is one little children will enjoy.


Talon Connected by Gigi Sedlmayer

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Gigi Sedlmayer has written another remarkable tale about Matica and her family. Matica adores her family, her friends, and her amazing condor birds. She and the birds have an incredible connection. They keep astounding the Indians, and even Matica’s parents, and younger brother with their understanding and wisdom. Will the “You know who” capture Talon, Tima, or Tamo? Readers of every age will keep turning the pages, eager to see what happens next. In this story, we are reminded “We are all connected.” Those are wise words, don’t you think? This is a heartwarming, engaging tale with many words of wisdom. I highly recommend it. Congratulations, Gigi on completing another remarkable story. Thank you for sharing your gift with so many others.


Princesses Don’t Have Sticky Hair by Angela Castillo

Rating: 4 out of 5.

” Princesses Don’ t have Sticky Hair” is an endearing tale for young children. The illustrations are well done, colorful and engaging. Small children will giggle when they see that princesses normally don’t have sticky hair, or other problems, but what are the exceptions? Do spider webs make a princesses hair sticky? How are marshmallows roasted in the book? Little folks will smile at the various situations depicted in this book. I thought the illustrations were delightful and engaging. The story seemed a bit short, but still entertaining.


Popcorn Behind the Bush by Grace Lajoy Henderson

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Popcorn Behind the Bush” is an entertaining tale. Gracie’s grandma calls to ask if she received a tin of popcorn in the mail. At first, Gracie doesn’t see the popcorn by the front door, but the mail carrier left a note saying that the popcorn was delivered. Gracie was puzzled. Why was the word “bush” on the note? Her mom thought maybe there was a bush in the mailbox. Her dad had a different idea. And Gracie’s brother thought perhaps the popcorn was growing on a bush in their yard. Finally, Gracie solves the problem and discovers the popcorn. I thought the answers her family gave were fun. The story will keep readers wondering what happened to the popcorn. Also, the questions at the end will help readers discover how well they recall the events of the story.


The Bugville Critters Have a Surprise Party by Robert Stanek

Rating: 3 out of 5.

“Have a Surprise Party -A Bugville Pictures Picture Book” has colorful illustrations. In the story Lass Lady Bug and her friends Buster Bee, Cat Caterpillar, Barry Beetle and other members of her family prepare for a surprise party for Lass’s dad because he was just re-elected as mayor of Bugville. Lass’s job was to lick the envelopes and insert the invitations. Some of her friends get tangled in streamers and everyone is amused. Lass narrates the story but her insect friends don’t show emotions. I feel the story would have been more interesting with more action and emotion from the characters. Also, the print was gray instead of black so it was somewhat difficult to read against some of the background colors. Still, Lass and her friends were helpful when they all worked to make the party a success so it showed the value of teamwork.


Fairyville Adventures-Tasha’s Wish by Simone Cannon

Rating: 3 out of 5.

“Fairyville Adventures: Tasha’s Wish” conveyed a message that children will relate to; siblings are not perfect but what if they weren’t here at all? Tasha got very irritated with her little brother because he broke many of her toys. She failed to see the good parts of having a brother until later in the tale. Although the message is helpful to children, there were editing/formatting issues which detracted from the book. I felt that the story would have been more memorable if Tasha was encouraged to change her behavior. Other valuable life lessons could have been incorporated into the story. However, the illustrations were good.


Anna Finds a new Home: Anna Banana by Sigal Adler

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Anna Banana: Anna Finds a new Home” is delightful. I loved the rhymes , and illustrations. In this cute tale, Anna Banana needs a new home. She packs up and shops for just the right residence. At first Anna lived inside a banana and she found it quite crowded. There was barely room for a plant and a ball. Then Anna tries living in an orange. It was much more comfy and it even had a window. Still, it wasn’t exactly to her liking. How about an onion? Anna tried it, but it was rather smelly and she had to use nose plugs; definitely not her perfect house. After that, Anna thought a carrot might be perfect. But she found it hardly had room for her belongings. Anna searched for a very long time. Just as she was becoming discouraged, she found the perfect residence.
Young children will adore this endearing tale. Not only will they smile, but at the end there are educational questions about various fruits and veggies and why they are important to you. Highly recommended


Shep Dreams of Home by Jason Matthews

Rating: 3 out of 5.

“Shep Dreams of a Home” is sweet, with a happy ending, but I felt the plot could have been developed more and that the story would have been more enjoyable for young children if it had illustrations. The story itself was quite short, but but there wasn’t much detail or action so children would feel more connected to Shep. Also, it seemed a bit odd to me that someone who broke into the house to eat food was welcomed to a gathering they had. Couldn’t some type of consequence be introduced for that action? Nevertheless, the book did have some happy moments to share, like when Shep found a happy home.


El Abecedario Artistco de Maya by Maya Litwack

Rating: 5 out of 5.

El abecedario artístico de Maya: Maya’s Artistic Spanish Alphabet” is an endearing tale with illustrations created by a 5 year-old. The dedication and other comments are written in Spanish, but translated to English in case readers are not fluent in Spanish. I thought the illustrations were cute and engaging. Little ones will learn new words in Spanish while they explore this book. I have no doubt that children and their families will treasure this book. They will love reading it over and over again. Highly recommended. Kudos to Maya and her mom.


Aiden McGee Gets a Case of the “Actuallys” by Aaron McGinley

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Aiden McGee gets a case of the Actuallys” is an entertaining tale children will enjoy and learn important things from. In addition, I think young readers or listeners will relate to the story. Aiden is a bright little fellow who wants to be sure that statements his classmates make are absolutely true. For example, he would correct them if they used the word “turtle” instead of “tortoise.” Aiden thought that the children were wrong if they didn’t say precisely the right thing. At first he didn’t understand why even his favorite teacher remarked that Aiden was “Splitting hairs.” Aiden decided to ask his mom, a doctor, about the expression “splitting hairs” and what it meant. His mom explained it clearly so she and Aiden could make a plan to help remedy the situation. Aiden discovered a formula he could think about before he said anything. There were three questions he practiced asking himself. With practice, Aiden learned to think about other people’s feelings before expressing his opinion. It’s a valuable thing to learn. The story is fun to read and I think children will find it helpful as well. The illustrations were nice. My only criticism is that the print is small and difficult to read in places. Regardless, I recommend this book.


Good Day or Bad Day I Love you Anyway! by Sigal Adler

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Good day or bad day I love you Anyway” is a fun book. It’s perfect to remind young readers and preschoolers that their parents will love them even if they have a grumpy, grouchy, tiring day. In the story Monster wakes up and everything seems to go wrong. He gets milk on his shirt, but Mom has a new one ready. His mom worries about being late for work so everyone rushes around trying to prevent another mishap. In the end, Monster is sorry that he wasn’t polite toward his mom. But, like most moms, she understood that we all have challenging days now and then. But Mom will love you through it all. I think that’s such an important message; maybe the best ever. I highly recommend this story. It told in entertaining rhyming verses and the illustrations are bright and engaging. No doubt it will be a huge success. Little ones and their families are sure to love it.


Sarafina Soars by Alma Hammond

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Serafina Soars” is a cute book with bright, engaging illustrations. In this story, readers will meet Serafina, a shy Eurasian Eagle Owl. They’ll find out why she has very good hearing and what helps her fly long distances. Serafina is very shy by nature. When a rude donkey makes unkind comments, Serafina’s confidence is shaken. But she meets some turtle doves who help rebuild her confidence. Little by little she begins exploring the world around her. During the story Serafina meets animals who help her overcome her shyness. I liked the extra educational section at the end of the book which explains more about Flamenco Dancers, Turtle Doves, White Storks and other places Serafina visited during her travels. My opinion is that the story ended a bit abruptly. Regardless, story will help children who need to overcome shyness or build confidence.


The Story of the Lost Bear, Two Suns by Natalie P. Gump

Rating: 3 out of 5.

“”The Story of the Lost Bear, Two Suns: The Way to Equality is Through the Heart” is a cute story with an important message that we are all different. Though the moral is an important one, I felt it was repetitive. Many times during the story, the same message was repeated. I think it would have been more enjoyable and engaging if some of the characters had something else to share. The illustrations were alright, but not big and colorful. In addition, the print was small and difficult to read. I feel that the tale was somewhat boring, although it did have a happy ending. Considering all of these factors, my rating is three stars.


Little Miss History Travels to Independence Hall by Barbara A. Mojica

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Children will adore this new book where Little Miss History takes them to Independence Hall. They will learn all sorts of interesting facts. For example, did you know Independence Hall was originally called the Pennsylvania State House? How did the members of the Continental Congress protect their privacy? How did the children of Philadelphia celebrate the historical events of that era? They did something amazing and you’ll certainly be impressed when you find out what they did. This book is a must-have for middle-grade readers. They should all learn about the remarkable founding of this nation and the obstacles the colonists overcame. I loved this book and I know children will enjoy it from cover to cover and they will be well educated about the important events that shaped our nation’s founding. Highly recommended.


A Day With Moo by Kerry McQuaide

Rating: 4 out of 5.

A Day with Moo: A best Friend Book” is cute and entertaining. In the story, young readers or preschoolers will see that Midge and her little toy cow, Moo have been together since Midge was a newborn. They love doing things together. I liked the illustrations, especially the one where Midge was playing doctor and covered Moo with band aids. They do get into a bit of mischief together. The story is a good example of what being a friend involves. Another of my favorite parts was when Midge promised “It would be her turn to eat all of the peas tomorrow.” I think very young children will enjoy this tale.


The Magic Pencil by Arnie Lightening

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This is a cute story with illustrations similar to ones a child would create. In the story, six-year-old Noah is often bored until his uncle presents him with a magic pencil. What makes this exciting? Once Noah draws a picture and signs it, the characters in the picture come to life. That allows Noah to have adventures with a Kracken monster and pirates. Young children will be entertained in this story and the creative ways Noah solves the different scenarios in the tale. Although the story was entertaining, I felt it was a bit wordy. Still, children will enjoy this tale.


When I Imagine by Sophie Carmen

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Andie is a little girl who loves to use her imagination. Whatever she wanted to do, she visualized. She asked her dad if she could become an astronaut, but he said she’s too small for that. Andie wanted to have a picnick outside with her sister, but it was raining out. Andie even asked her teacher if she could become president someday, but the teacher said being president was a hard job. Although the story is cute and the pictures are bright and engaging, the adult characters might have encouraged Andie more, rather than sharing negative comments. However, the book encourages children to have dreams, which is important. Also, adding some discussion topics in the back of the book might have helped children to think about their own goals and dreams. Regardless, the story was entertaining and enjoyable.


Superpotamus by Ruth Paul

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Superpotamus” is a cute, rhyming tale about a hippo who loves being helpful. He’s always dressed in his special cape so he’s ready to take action at any moment someone needs assistance. Superpotamus would watch over his town and fly into action when he saw someone in need. The problem was, no one seemed to appreciate his efforts. Worse yet, when the big fellow saw a fireworks display, he worked hard to extinguish the flames, but everyone in town ridiculed him because he spoiled their fireworks celebration. Eventually, a huge catastrophe occurs and Superpotamus becomes the hero everyone appreciates. The rhymes are cute and there are some helpful lessons for the little ones. I felt the illustrations were blurry and not well-defined. But the story itself is cute and enjoyable for young children.


Merlin Raj and the Santa Algorithm by D. G. Priya

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Merlin Raj and the Santa Algorithm” is interesting, and educational. The story involves Matthew, his family and his service dog, Merlin. It’s a creative tale that solves various problems in a logical way. Merlin occasionally has problems with becoming distracted when he’s trying to help Matthew. He feels his most important job is please Matthew, his favorite human. Just when Merlin worries that he has failed in his mission, he ends up being a hero. I liked the glossary at the end of the book, which will help readers understand words they may know. The pencil drawings are well done, but I’d prefer them to be bigger. Children will have the opportunity to learn more about STEM, problem solving and algorithms while reading this story.


Life of Bailey: From Puppy to Dog by Sensei Paul David

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“Life of Bailey: From Puppy to Dog” is a thoughtful account of a famly who adopts a puppy. The family works hard to train him, with patience and love. At first, Bailey is sad because he misses his siblings, but he learns lots of new things at home with his human family. A problem arises when Bailey’s human mom has allergies. But I think they handled this sitution carefully by finding a special doctor to help the mom ovecome her ailment. Bailey has a happy life with them and enjoys his adventures. I felt the book was thougtfully written, explaining some of the things that occur when you get a new puppy. And I liked the picture to color at the back. However, I’d have given it an even higher rating if there were some questions at the end of the book to encourage children and families to discuss the book.

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