Review: The Boy In The Oak by Jessica Albarn

Category: 3-5 Picture Book

Published: September 2010

Read: May 2017

Score: 3/5

Synopsis: (Goodreads) In the garden behind the cottage grows an ancient Oak that hides a secret. The young boy who lives in the cottage couldn’t care less about the tree and certainly doesn’t know it is enchanted. But the Faeries soon change this…
They cast a spell which causes the ancient Oak to swallow the boy whole. As the seasons pass, the boy trapped inside begins to experience the world as a tree, and regret his cruelty towards nature. But the Oak does not let him go. Then a new family with a young girl moves into the cottage. The girl senses magic behind the mystery of the boy who disappeared there many years ago. Will she discover the Faeries and what they’ve done? And, more importantly, will she be able to break the spell?

Review: This was a weird book, with a good message but weird and not one I would read to my child until they were a lot older as it could be deemed scary. It’s also interesting because it’s long but in between each pages are these thin sheets with really beautiful simple drawings of faeries and trees and people. They truly are beautiful.

It’s about a boy who pisses off the faeries of the forest behind his house by being mean to living creatures and nature. They trap him in a tree and when he see’s his parents leave thinking he was kidnapped he is stuck there for what sounds like a very very long time. Than eventually another family moves in and a little girl is with them. Does she see him? Can he save her before the same fate happens to her as did to him?

As I said it’s a bit of a dark story. About a kid whose parents think was kidnapped but really just put in a tree for all eternity. It’s also a long story. I can’t see most young kids sitting put for the whole thing. Its got dark undertones despite being a kids book.

Overall it’s not a bad story. Good moral…do not hurt nature and respect all things living and not.

Well written and as I said earlier it’s got beautiful pictures that were great to look at.

YOU WILL LIKE THIS IF YOU LIKE:

Through the Woods by Emily Carroll

 

Review: lf I Had A Gryphon by Vickki Vansickle and Cale Atkinson

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Category: 3-5 Storybook

Published: 2016

Read: 2016

Score: 4/5

Synopsis: (Goodreads) When a kitten sneezes it’s adorable. When a dragon sneezes? It’s a fire hazard!
Sam is already bored of her new pet, a rather sedate hamster. Inspired by her book of mythological creatures, Sam longs for a more exciting pet. But she soon realizes that taking care of these magical beasts might not be as wonderful as she thought. Unicorns are shy, gryphons scare the dogs at the dogpark, and having a fire extinguisher handy at all times makes dragons seem like an awful lot of work. In the end, Sam realizes that her hamster is a pretty sweet and safe pet … or is he?

Review: For a 3-5 book this is super cute. I love the story line and I am sucker for any kid book that rhymes. I have a 2-year-old son and books like this are a little too old for him yet but when it rhymes he will actually pay attention.

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The illustrations are super cute and I love how adorable the main character is. It’s great to see a lot of diversity more in kids books and this is a great example of that.

Sam has a hamster but he’s just not that much fun so she decides to imagine what it would be like to have a creature like a Cracken, Hippogriff, and a Dragon. They all have their problems.

It’s a great story of loving what you already have, or as some people say “the grass isn’t greener on the other side”.

It’s an easy read, not a lot of words which would make it a great started 3-5 for any kid wanting an older book. The only problem is that most kids will not understand what most of these creatures are but hey it’s a great introduction to some really cool creatures.

Overall enjoyable and happy to have received it 🙂

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Review: Miss Moon Wise Words from a Dog Governess by Janet Hill

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Category: 3-5 Storybook

Published: 2016

Read: 2016

Score: 5/5

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Synopsis: (Goodreads) Miss Wilhelmina Moon is a dog governess. At her first placement, on a small island off the coast of France, her new charges – sixty-seven dogs of all shapes, sizes and colors – run wild. But armed with patience and a passion for teaching, as well as her companions, Mitford the monkey and Petunia the French bulldog, Miss Moon soon imparts twenty important lessons to her furry brood. Some are practical, some are playful, one or two are a little unusual, but all are necessary for the raising of happy, healthy and well-mannered dogs (and humans). miss-moon-master-your-survival-sl

Reaction: This is such a beautiful book. Just look at some of the pictures that I have posted with this review to prove that. The pictures are rich, well done, so full of life and just wonderful. I couldn’t stop looking at them. I was lucky enough to read this book at work when it came out and am happy I did because I can now highly recommend it. b5c27d69752570eafaaa74e0fa0f158f

It’s about a women who govern’s a bunch of dogs and teaches them lessons. After a long paragraph on page one each page after that has a picture and a “lesson” on it. For the little ones the pictures are great and the lessons are all true. They can be used to teach kids lots of important things.

 

 

 

 

Lesson 8: Make believe is food for the soul 

Lesson 16: Practice the art of conversation, listen more than you speak. 

Those are a few of the gems you will find in this book. All good, and quite frankly can all be used for both kids and dogs. Miss-Moon-n-lgo-490x650

The other bonus of this book is that it’s by a Canadian author who is a celebrated artist and lives in Ontario. This warms my heart.

So overall it’s a winner, beautiful, fast read, great storyline and messages for kids. Pick this one up today, even to just admire the work.

Review: Hiawatha and the Peacemaker by Robbie Robertson

 

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Category: 3-5 Picture Book

Published: 2015

Read: 2016

Score: 4.5/5

Synopsis: Hiawatha was a strong and articulate Mohawk who was chosen to translate the Peacemaker’s message of unity for the five warring Iroquois nations during the 14th century. This message not only succeeded in uniting the tribes but also forever changed how the Iroquois governed themselves—a blueprint for democracy that would later inspire the authors of the U.S. Constitution. Musical icon Robbie Robertson learned the story of Hiawatha and his spiritual guide, the Peacemaker, as part of the Iroquois oral tradition.

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Review: This is a great book that I think every child should read, especially ones that live in North America. I am glad that Robbie Robertson decided to write this book and published it because it’s an important part of all our heritage. I don’t believe there is enough taught in school about the Native culture and this would be a great book for any child’s library that would not only introduce the a very famous Native story but also teach them about peace and understanding and forgiveness.  robbierobertson4web

It tells the story of Hiawatha who after loosing his family by murder by another group wants revenge. He is full of hate and anger and wants to kill the people who killed his family. The Peacemaker shows up and teaches him about peace and love of your fellow-man and has him go around with him and tell other groups this message. Peace is brought to the groups and changed the way they functioned from then on. As it says above, and I have researched this, it is true that this story did indeed inspire the author’s of the U.S. Constitution.

The pictures are beautifully done and full of rich colour. They are basically a story in themselves. Just as a picture book it’s wonderfully done and I loved looking at all the pictures.

This would be a book for the older of this age group. It does touch on topics like death and murder. It can be a little bit descriptive, so if you teach your kids about it while reading it this may help them understand better instead of being scared. This is the only reason I took off a half of a point for my score of the book.

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Otherwise, as I said more stories like this need to come out so we can all share in and love the heritage that is part of our country.

Review: The Little Snowplow by Lora Koehler

Illustrated by Jake Parker

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Category: Children’s Book Ages 3-5

Published: 2015

Read: 2016

Score: 5/5

SynopsisOn the Mighty Mountain Road Crew, the trucks come in one size: BIG. That is, until the little snowplow joins the crew. None of the other trucks think that the little snowplow can handle the big storms, but he knows that he can do it—and just to be sure, he trains hard, pushing loads of gravel, pulling blocks of concrete, and doing plow lifts to get ready. But when a blizzard arrives, will the little snowplow’s training be enough to clear the streets and handle unexpected trouble?

Review: This is a super cute and great book for any child to read. I would suggest maybe the older ones instead of the little ones because there is a lot of words for a kid to sit through. The one thing I love is even though it’s about a snow plow it’s great for both boys and girls.

You have this little snow plow that all the other big trucks don’t think will be able to handle the winter. They must live in Canada. So in the spirit of The Little Engine that Could this has that great theme of no matter how bit you are if you think you can and prepare for it you really can! download

The illustrations are beautiful and engaging. You can see the emotions on the plow with each page and part of the story. It’s a beautiful thing. The story moves along and it has a good plot line and because it being adorable that is why I love this book for both myself and kids.

I was lucky enough to receive this book as book mail  at my work and am super happy to be able to have it in my son’s library.

 

Review: Home Alone, The Classic Illustrated Storybook

Based on the story written by John Hughes and directed by Chris Columbus. Illustrated by Kim Smith.

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Category: 3-5 Storybook

Published: 2015

Score: 4/5

Read: 2015

Synopsis: Really, everyone knows this story or if you shouldn’t please see the movie. It is a classic and a must watch every holiday season. Do not see the rest of them, the first one if the best one. Basically, Kevin keeps getting in trouble and wishes his family away. The next morning he wakes up and they are gone. Than he realizes that there are two thief’s  that are going to rob his house so he does everything he can to protect his home. This movie is so full of stuff that is now part of pop culture history that it will forever be loved by young and old. mgid-uma-image-mtv

Review: This is the kids book of the movie and for the most part I loved it. The illustrations are beautiful and rich and full of colour. It’s the same story we all know and should love (again watch the movie!). It’s a great way to introduce this story to younger kids and a wonderful present if you so choose to get it. 0 Home Alone 2

I love how they can take a movie and turn it in to a book that you could read in about 5 mins or less. Which in all honesty is all the attention you will get out of children at this age. It’s also a great book about Christmas that isn’t directly about Christmas in a sense of tree’s, santa ect.

My only upset about this book is they do not talk at all about where his parents went. They are gone one min and then they are back at the end of the book. It wouldn’t have been hard to put in a page or two more to say where they were when this was all going on.

Other than that little oversight. This is a beautiful book and I am sure to keep it in my collection not only for my but for my son.

Home Alone