BOOK NOOK REVIEWS: Peter Carnavas

 

jessica

 

Title: Jessica’s Box
Author/Illustrator: Peter Carnavas
Publisher: Kane Miller
Ages: 4-8

 

Synopsis:

 

The first day of school can be scary. New teachers. New routines. Jessica wonders if she will meet any new friends and brings a mysterious box to school just to make sure she does. Everyone begins to wonder just what’s inside?

 

Why you should read it:

 

This delightful picture book comes from down under, but every child around the world can deal with the same first-day jitters.

I like how Jessica is encouraged by her family to solve her problem on her own. Author/Illustrator Peter Carnavas’ wonderful drawings take the reader on a journey through Jessica’s school adventure as she tries and tries to make some new friends. It’s only when she believes she’s destined to be alone that a special friendship comes along.

The fact Jessica has a disability will help children realize everyone needs a friend, no matter their situation. This author hides a valuable lesson inside an adorable story. A great addition to any home library.
Like-o-meter Rating scale**: 5 out of 5…grab it!
**Rating scale**
5 out of 5…grab it!

4 out of 5…think about it.

3 out of 5…take it or leave it.
2 out of 5…maybe not for you.

1 out of 5…forget about it!

 

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donna - Copy

 

Best selling, award-winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna is a BOOK NOOK REVIEWS host providing the latest book reviews on all genres of children’s books, and the host of WRITERLY WISDOM, a resource series for writers. Donna is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. She is a lover of dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection. Donna’s latest book, HISTORY’S MYSTERIES: Ship of Dreams, will be available in eBook and print form from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books A Million, and other online retailers on October 14th, 2019.

BOOK NOOK REVIEWS: Elise Parsley

alligator.jpg

 

Title: If You Ever Want To Bring An Alligator To School, DON’T!
Author/Illustrator: Elise Parsley
Publisher: Hachette Book Group Inc
Ages: 4-8

 

Synopsis:

 

An alligator for show-and-tell sounds like tons of fun. What could possibly go wrong?

Magnolia is a one-of-a-kind girl who wants to share something at show-and-tell that really stands out from the crowd. But what if her teacher is right? What if alligators really are nothing but trouble?

 

Why you should read it:

 
What a fun concept and such beautiful digital artwork! Every child (and their parents) can relate to the age old question of what to bring to show-and-tell. But how many people can say they brought a chomping, romping, stomping alligator to school?

Author/Illustrator Elise Parsley infuses humor and originality into a potentially hum drum topic and the result is a whimsical adventure into the world of young elementary children during what should have been a typical school day. While I was quite entertained by the storyline and liked how Magnolia solved her ‘gator problem, it was the illustrations that I kept returning to.

Stunning colors and vivid detail kept calling me back and once I read the story, I returned for a much longer study of this illustrator’s ability to draw me into Magnolia’s world with her engaging drawings. Definitely a winner in my book and a great addition to any home library!
Like-o-meter Rating scale**: 5 out of 5…grab it!
**Rating scale**
5 out of 5…grab it!

4 out of 5…think about it.

3 out of 5…take it or leave it.

2 out of 5…maybe not for you.

1 out of 5…forget about it!

BOOK NOOK REVIEWS: Lauren Tarshis

 

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Title: I Survived The Nazi Invasion, 1944
Author: Lauren Tarshis
Publisher: Scholastic
Ages: 7-11

Synopsis:

 

In a Polish ghetto, Max Rosen and his sister, Zena, struggle to live after their father is taken away by the Nazis. With barely enough food to survive, the siblings make a daring escape from Nazi soldiers into the nearby forest.

Max and Zena are brought to a safe camp by Jewish resistance fighters. But soon, bombs are falling all around them. Can Max and Zena survive the fallout of the Nazi invasion?

 

Why I think you should read it:

 

I’m currently doing research for book three of my early reader historical fiction series so of course my latest to-read titles are going to be along those same lines.

I like the “I Survived” series. These gripping stories are well written and include an imaginary cast of characters who seem so real that I’m speeding through pages just to see if they do indeed survive!

Max is a protective big brother who can’t understand all the senseless hate coming from people he once thought were his friends. He begins to lose hope things will ever get better while trying his best to protect his younger sister from the realities of a country torn apart by war.

With both parents gone, Zena has only Max to look after her. Life in a Nazi ghetto can easily destroy hope in a person but brave Zena still manages to see hope in every day things like a robin flying by.

Readers interested in learning more about natural and historical events will enjoy the I Survived series!

 

Like-o-meter Rating scale **: 5 out of 5…grab it!

 

5 out of 5…grab it!

4 out of 5…think about it.

3 out of 5…take it or leave it.

2 out of 5…maybe not for you.

1 out of 5…forget about it!

WRITERLY WISDOM: Donna L Martin

HOW KROGER HELPED MY MARKETING PLAN

by Donna L Martin

 

I woke up this morning wondering what I would write about today and for some reason my grocery shopping trip this past weekend popped into my head. I don’t know if you have a Kroger where you live, but it is one of the largest grocery store chains in my town. Over the years I’ve shopped at different stores depending on my mood and what sales were running. I’m not one of your “brand” shoppers. Or at least I didn’t think I was until it dawned on me this morning how subtle Kroger’s marketing plan has been to win me over and yet so “in my face”.

 

1. OFFER SOMETHING CONSISTENT

 

Kroger sends me an email every week tempting me with their latest specials. They aren’t shoving their wares down my throat but every week I know I can depend on that little email saying “hey, come take a look at what’s happening over in my corner of the world”. A writer serious about expanding their fan base can learn from that. If you have a blog then have a regular posting schedule and stick to it. It doesn’t matter what goes into that post as long as you are consistent about it. If your blog is a writer’s blog then don’t start writing about how you are crocheting your dear aunt a sweater for Christmas…unless of course you can tie that back to writing somehow. My blog has always been aimed at writing/seeing the positive side of things so I always make sure whatever I write falls under one of those two categories. I’ve written many blogs and if you look at any one of them you will find that is the driving theme in all of them.

 

2. OFFER SOMETHING TEMPTING

 

Every week Kroger offers a Free Friday coupon. They send me an email on Wednesday to tweak my interest about visiting their website on Friday to discover what the free coupon might be. The item doesn’t usually cost much…this week is was Marie Calendar’s Breakfast Pot Pie. Some weeks I’m not interested in picking up their free coupon but EVERY week I make sure I visit Kroger’s website because I don’t want to miss out on the possibility of treating myself to something free. Kroger doesn’t bang on my door and yell at me to buy their stuff. They simply send a friendly reminder saying, “we want to show our appreciation for your loyalty by offering you a gift as a way of saying thanks”. I don’t HAVE to take them up on their offer but in this day and age of rising costs and diminished customer service, even one small gesture like Kroger’s Free Friday coupon subtly reminds me why I like shopping there in the first place. I’m going to continue tweaking the look of this blog in the next few months and will be adding some free things as MY way of showing my appreciation for all the wonderful visitors who take a moment out of their busy days to stop by. Yes, it’s smart marketing but it also ties into the caring and sharing person I am so I’m excited about being able to do this for my readers.

 

3. OFFER A “BRAND” TO IDENTIFY WITH

 

There are many other grocery stores in my city…just now I thought of about six other companies offering basically the same thing…but when I need a loaf of bread I immediately think Kroger. For me, they have managed to capture my attention in such a way that their BRAND is seared forever into my brain when it comes to grocery shopping. I will still look at the other store’s ads but unless there is a HUGE difference in pricing, Kroger will see my smiling face every Saturday morning for many years to come.

I’ve been working on creating my own “brand” and the title of my books makes it somewhat easier. To me, Story Catcher Publishing is who I am…a writer trying to catch the right words to tell an engaging story. My new business cards show an open book…hopefully inviting future readers to stop by and take a peak.  My Facebook fan page is titled Story Catcher Publishing. I even have magnets on my car doors announcing I’m associated with Story Catcher Publishing and directing them back to this website. I’ve had those magnets on my car for about a year now and I’m many double takes and passing looks. People are pausing to read my sign and last week a server at the Burger King drive thru stopped and asked me about my sign. She told me her granddaughter loves to read and I told her about my book. Maybe she will pick up a copy of my latest book, HISTORY’S MYSTERIES: Ship of Dreams, coming out October 14. 2019 and maybe she won’t, but I know if she sees my “brand” enough, she might decide it’s a brand worth being loyal to in the future…**

 

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HISTORY’S MYSTERIES: Ship of Dreams (Paperback)

Ten-year-old Margaret can hardly wait to see the largest ship ever built visit Southampton! Life is already hard for her family in the spring of 1912, but the coal workers' strike could turn a bad situation into a deadly one. Margaret hopes to see the great Titanic leave on its maiden voyage, but will the strike prevent it from happening?

$10.00

 

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donna - Copy

 

Best selling, award-winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna is a BOOK NOOK REVIEWS host providing the latest book reviews on all genres of children’s books, and the host of WRITERLY WISDOM, a resource series for writers. Donna is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. She is a lover of dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection. Donna’s latest book, HISTORY’S MYSTERIES: Ship of Dreams, will be available in eBook and print form from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books A Million, and other online retailers on October 1th, 2019.

BOOK NOOK REVIEWS: Rinda Beach

 

neil.png

 

Title: Neil Armstrong’s Wind Tunnel Dream
Author: Rinda Beach
Illustrator: Cole Roberts
Publisher: Beach Girl Press
Ages: 8-12

Synopsis:

 

Most people know that Neil Alden Armstrong was the first man to set foot on the moon, but very few know how it all started . . . with a dream to build his own wind tunnel.

Read how Neil’s love of planes took him from the Cleveland air races at age two to the Wright Brothers’ wind tunnel at age sixteen. Discover how Neil made his wind tunnel dream come true.

 

Why you should read it:

 

I remember Neil Armstrong’s walk on the moon. I remember the awe I felt watching him march into history with each step he took on the moon’s surface. But what I didn’t know is what drove this man to venture into the unknown.

Until now.

Rinda Beach’s debut chapter book, Neil Armstrong’s Wind Tunnel Dream, gives her readers a chance to go back in time following the Wright Brothers history making flight, and one young boy’s dream to replicate their wind tunnel experiment.

Engaging and entertaining, Rinda’s story takes us on a journey from two year old Neil’s first glimpse of a flying machine, all the way to a high school senior’s quest to build his own wind tunnel, and all the challenges in between to make that dream happen.

A nice addition to any home or school library.

Like-O-Meter Rating:  4 out of 5…think about it!

**Rating scale**
5 out of 5…grab it! 
4 out of 5…think about it. 
3 out of 5…take or leave it.
2 out of 5…maybe not for you.
1 out of 5…forget about it!

BOOK NOOK REVIEWS: Ann Abramson

 

anne frank.jpg

 

Title: Who Was Anne Frank?
Author: Ann Abramson
Illustrator: Nancy Harrison
Publisher: The Penguin Group
Ages: 8-12

 

Synopsis:

 

Who was Anne Frank?
A high-spirited child always playing pranks?
A young Jewish girl forced into hiding for two years?
The author of one of the best-loved books in the world?
All of the above!
Here is an illustrated biography about Anne Frank and her world.

 

Why you should read it:

 

Anyone studying the history surrounding World War II will have probably heard of Anne Frank. I, myself, have read many different versions of the now famous story of one girl’s plight during one of the world’s most violent eras.

While I thought I was very familiar with Anne’s story, I was quite surprised to discover there were quite a few things I didn’t know about her earlier life before the Nazis invaded her adopted home of Amsterdam, Netherlands.

Illustrator Nancy Harrison creates vivid artwork to compliment Ann Abramson’s touching retelling of the everyday struggle in war torn Europe during the 1930’s and 1940’s. Ms. Abramson helps her readers identify with one’s girl’s simple wish of one day becoming a writer and hoping her words might one day inspire the world around her.

Too bad Anne Frank never lived to see how her diary touched so many lives since those horrific days of World War II, but at least we have books like Who Was Ann Frank? to help us to never forget one girl’s dream of a better tomorrow.

A great addition to any home library!
Like-O-Meter Rating: 5 out of 5…grab it!

**Rating scale**

5 out of 5…grab it! nook
4 out of 5…think about it.
3 out of 5…take or leave it.
2 out of 5…maybe not for you.
1 out of 5…forget about it!

 

 

BOOK NOOK REVIEWS: Aaron Reynolds

 

nerdy

 

Title: Nerdy Birdy
Author: Aaron Reynolds
Illustrator: Matt Davies
Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
Ages: 4-8

 

Synopsis:

 

Nerdy Birdy likes reading, video games, and reading about video games, which immediately disqualifies him for membership in the cool crowd.

One thing is clear: being a nerdy birdy is a lonely lifestyle.

When he’s at his lowest point, Nerdy Birdy meets a flock just like him. He has friends and discovers that there are far more nerdy birdies than cool birdies in the sky.

 

Why you should read it:

 

Who doesn’t love a book with a title like NERDY BIRDY? Even the illustration of the cute little guy with the big glasses on the cover makes me want to learn more about this nerdy bird.

Children’s author, Aaron Reynolds, shines the light on a very common place problem. What does it take to fit in with the cool kids and what does it take to stand on one’s own? Cute illustrations and a simple, but effective story line helps young readers understand the difference between cliques and true friendships. Sometimes the “cool” birds don’t make the best friends, and sometimes the “nerdy” birds have the most fun! A great addition to any home library.

Like-o-meter Rating scale**: 5 out of 5…grab it!

**Rating scale**
5 out of 5…grab it!

4 out of 5…think about it.

3 out of 5…take it or leave it.

2 out of 5…maybe not for you.

1 out of 5…forget about it!