All posts filed under: Books

Books are food for the soul. When we read books, we learn and grow.

I reviewed the books that I have read. Pick a book to read based on my review. You are also welcome to suggest books for me to read.

The Reindeer Girl

Happy book publication month to The Reindeer Girl by Holly Webb (@hollywebbauthor) Lotta goes to Norway with her family to celebrate her great-grandmother, Erika’s birthday. Lotta grew up listening to stories about reindeer herding from her mother and great-grandmother. Lotta loves reindeers and wishes she had a reindeer to take care of. Lotta’s wish comes true, she travels back in time to when her great grandmother is a kid and Lotta is her cousin. Lotta and Erika embark on a dangerous journey to save the Reindeer mother and calf, who were in their care. This book is a great read for middle graders who like diverse literature and want to learn about Norway culture and customs and Reindeers. Thanks to @netgalley and @pubspotlight for the ARC.

The Magic of the Lost Temple

Books have a character. A few books are like patient best friends. They don’t hurry you to complete them, they have an air of confidence that say ‘come to me whenever you feel like and we will spend some good time together.’ Sudha Murthy’s latest middlegrade novel, The Magic of the Lost Temple, is a book that fits the character of a ‘patient best friend ’. In this book, Nooni, starts her summer vacation. Their family’s usual vacation plans change because her mother has to go for a work-related training. Nooni is shipped off to her grandfather’s village (dad’s dad) for six weeks. Nooni makes new friends in the village, learns how to help at home, learns about plants in her grandma’s garden and also listens to the tales about village history from her grandmother. Her grandmother tells her about a magnificent stepwell that remains buried. Is that stepwell a myth or a reality? What I loved about the book is the ‘village lifestyle’, where everything is unhurried, people help out one another and have …

The Little Engine That Could

The Little Engine That Could is an American classic children’s picturebook. The book was first published in 1930 and is written by Watty Piper. The book I read is illustrated by Loren Long. This story teaches optimism and hard work. An engine is carrying food and toys for the children in the other side of the mountain. The engine breaks down and the toys get worried that they cannot reach the children. They try to hike a ride from two shiny new engines and an old engine but they deny the request. Finally a little blue engine comes by. He wants to help but he doubts if he powerful enough to haul the cargo. Will the blue engine be successful in carrying the toys and food to the children on the other side of the mountain? The illustrations are fantastic. The mantra of the blue engine is ‘I think I can’ and it is a useful mantra to teach to young kids when faced with obstacles. Category: children’s picturebook Age recommendation: 0-5

The Little Mermaid

Happy book birthday to The Little Mermaid. The Little Mermaid fairy tale by Hans Christian Anderson is a well-known tale and doesn’t need an introduction. In this story, a mermaid falls in love with a prince and sacrifices her voice to become a human. Will the prince love her too? In this picture book, the illustrator Bernadette Watts brings this story to life with dream-like illustrations. I was also surprised to see that the original story is a bit different from what we know. The description of the underwater world and the mermaids by Hans Christian Anderson is magnificent. I would like have all the fairy tales illustrated as separate books and this book is a great start. A must-read book, but the rich language makes it suitable for kids age 8 and above. Thanks to @netgalley and @northsouthbooks for the ARC. Kids age: 8 and above

A Pinch of Magic

Happy Book Publication Month to A Pinch of Magic by Michelle Harrison. Three Widdershins sisters live in a dreary place called Crowstone under the care of their grandmother. The middle sister wants to escape Crowstone and see the outside world. She secretly plans an outing with her younger sister. Her grandmother appears out of nowhere, takes them home and reveals a family secret. The Widdershins are cursed to remain in Crowstone forever. Nine women from Winddershins family met their death when they crossed the border. Their grandmother also gives them three magical items passed down from one generation of Widdershins women to the next. The magical items are a traveling bag that can take you anywhere, the Russian dolls that can make a person vanish and a mirror which can show anyone in the world. The middle sister is determined to break the curse. With the help of her other sisters she embarks on a dangerous journey which involves helping a criminal escape from the Crowstone jail. Will the sister be able to break the …

Dalya and the Magic Ink Bottle

Happy Book Publication Month to Dalya and the Magic Ink Bottle by J.M.Evenson (@jmevenson) Dalya is a 12-year old girl. Her father takes her to Istanbul for Summer vacation to visit her great aunt. The Aunt’s house looks like a house from the horror movies, in ruin and almost falling apart. Dalya has her suspicions regarding the house but her father brushes them away. While Dalya waits to spend her time with her busy father she comes across a magical cat. Dalya’s Aunt herself is full of secrets and tells Dalya that she has to set things right. The cat leads Dalya to a magic ink bottle and Dalya makes a wish to go home, Cleveland. Dalya transforms to a cat. As a cat, Dalya is on a quest to find the owner of ink bottle so that he can change her back to human. Dalya makes new friends along the journey who help her with her mission. I loved that the setting of the book was in Instanbul and Dalya’s family are Muslims. I …

May saves the Day

Happy Book Publication Month to May saves the Day, written by Laura Gehl and illustrated by Serena Lombardo. May is the founder of Wordsaver Inc. Her phone doesn’t stop ringing. May uses the power of words to turn harmful situations into harmless situations. When she receives a call that bees are attacking a group of children. She inserts ‘T’ into bees so it becomes beets and all children have a beet, except Stu. Stu is in a wheel chair and he asks to be May’s sidekick. Initially May does not agree but later accepts his help when she faces tricky situations. This picturebook is great for increasing children’s interest in words and to teach them how words take on a completely new meaning by insertion and deletion of a few letters. I loved the wordplay of May and Stu. This can also be an activity book where kids can brainstorm how to change a dangerous word into a non-threatening one and compare with what May did. I also like that this book teaches about entrepreneurship …

Quintessence

Happy Book Publication Year to Quintessence by Jess Redman (@jess__red) Alma’s family moves to Four Points and Alma has trouble acclimating to the new middleschool and making friends. There is a mysterious shop in the city and the owner gives Alma a quintescope. When Alma looks through the quintescope that night, she sees a star falling and a starling, a glowing girl in need of help. Alma wants to help the starling but she escapes and hides in the woods. Alma joins astronomy club and meets Shirin, Hugo and Dustin. Alma and her friends are Elementals and they each have to gather an element of nature to send the starling back to her home. I loved the diverse nature of Alma’s friends. Alma is shy, Shirin is outgoing and loud, Hugo is a geek and Dustin is a bully. I liked the concepts of quintessence, the light inside us, and the importance of elements of nature. The author also touches upon mental health issues. This book is a great read for geeky middle schoolers interested …

Summer Feet

Happy Book Publication Month to Summer Feet written by Sheree Fitch and illustrated by Carolyn Fisher. Today’s the day we kick off shoes hide away socks Today’s the day Our summer feet shout LET US OUT. The main characters in this book are the feet of the children. In Summer, the feet come out of the shoes and socks and explore nature in their bare-naked form. The bare-naked feet walk over hard rocks, tumble down hills, climb trees, play hide-and-seek and many other activities. Summer Feet is a perfect picture book to read with children this Summer. It also provides for activities to do in Summer. Hurry up and grab this book because Autumn is coming and the feet have to be imprisoned in boots and socks soon. Thank you to @netgalley and @nimbuspub for the ARC.

The Tears of Monterini

Happy Publication Month to The Tears of Monterini by Amanda Weinberg (@amandaweinbergauthor). The Tears of Monterini is a historical women’s fiction set in the fictional town of Monterini, Italy. The novel is set in in time period of 1921-1946, when Mussolini rose and fell from power in Italy. The novel is about two families of different faiths, a Jew and a Catholic, but with friendship lasting for six generations. Yacobo is Jewish and has a book store and Angelo is a contadino, who is a winemaker. Yacobo’s daughter, Bella falls in love with Angelo’s son, Rico. Their love is forbidden in the eyes of the society and due to condemnation of Jews, as Hilter rose to power. The peaceful town of Monterini is torn apart, as the villagers decide what to do with the Jews in the village. No Jew was safe in that tumultuous time and the small town of Monterini was not an exception. I loved the descriptions about the town of Monterini and the various residents of the town. The reader follows …