All posts tagged: book review

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 …

Kiki Mcadoo and the graveyard ballerinas

Happy publication month to Kiki Mcadoo and the Graveyard Ballerinas by Colette Sewall. Kiki and her sister, Alison are ballerinas in training. They go to Mount Faylinn, a ballet school in Summer. Mount Faylinn is surrounded by a magical forest, a lake and a forbidden forest beyond the lake. Kiki meets Oliver at the school who introduces her to fairies of the forest and also takes her to darker parts of the forest. While Kiki struggles to perfect her ballet poses, she faces a new problem. Her sister is at the right age to be influenced by the darker forces of the forest. Will Kiki be able to save her sister? I loved the mystery surrounding the non-human characters in the book. This book also highlights the love between sisters and the sacrifices they make for one another. The unique plot of this book, which involved ballet, fairies, ghosts and alchemy made it difficult to put it down. A great read that will keep you at the edge of your seat. Thank you to @netgalley …

Different Like Me

Happy publication month to Different like me written by Xochitl Dixon (@xochitl.e.dixon) and illustrated by Bonnie Lui (@superbonart). We are all unique in our differences. We are dark and fair and all colors in between. We follow different religions of faith and speak different languages. We belong to different countries. Some speak with their hands, see with sticks and can move only in a wheelchair. Despite our differences we share the same feelings of hope, despair and yearn to be cared and loved by others. In this book, a group of diverse children are walking with a balloon to a surprise destination. As they make their journey, they make new friends and explore the differences, similarities and learn how to overcome a hurdle together. This picturebook touches on the most important concept that even though children look different but we are all human and have to look after one another. I loved the colorful illustrations and the fish balloon is a ‘cool’ character with interesting emotions. Thanks to @netgalley and @ourdailybread for the ARC.

The Book of Selkie

Happy Book Publication Year to The Book of Selkie by Briana Corr Scott. The Book of Selkie is a children’s picturebook which introduces a selkie to children. Selfies are faerie people who live part their lives as a seal. The selkies are seals that can shed their coat and land and transforms into humans. They live part of their life on land. In simple text, this book explains the yearning of a selkie to be on land and also return to the sea. This book talks about a typical ‘selkie’ day. With soothing illustrations, this book is appropriate to teach young children about Scottish and Irish legends of selkie. Thank you to @netgalley and @nimbuspub for the ARC.

Hope and Freckles

Happy Book Publication Year to Hope and Freckles Fleeing to a Better Forest by Bill Kiley and illustrated by Mary Manning. Hope and Freckles are a baby and a mother deer who live in the Olden Forest. The Olden Forest was becoming dangerous for Hope and Freckles. The summers were hotter, there was less food and water and the persistent threat for life from other carnivores and hunters. Hope, Freckles and other deer walk to the Big Pine Forest to take refuge but the guards don’t let them in because the Forest had enough white-tailed deer. When they plead to let them in, they separate Hope and Freckles. Freckles is taken to another family and Hope lives in a fenced area waiting for her child. Will Hope see Freckles again? This book explains with animal characters and eye-catching images, the immigration scenario in United States and other countries. It is a good book to teach children why people take refuge, why they are denied entry to a new country and also their suffering when children …

The 100 Simple Secrets of Happy People

The 100 Simple Secrets of Happy People by David Niven is a short read. The book is written in such a way that reading the chapter titles is enough. Each chapter covers one concept about how to be happy, followed by an example and a quote.⁠ ⁠ Among the 100 simple secrets, a few secrets that stuck with me are:⁠ 1. Have a purpose in your life⁠ 2. Have a hobby and also engage with people who share the same hobby⁠ 3. Have a community of friends and family and help each other out⁠ 4. Strive for progress, not for perfection ⁠ 5. Volunteer and exercise⁠ ⁠ For this new year, which of the above secrets will you make a resolution? For me, it will be exercise ;)⁠

La Princesa and the Pea

The classical story of The Princess and the Pea gets a Latino twist in the book, La Princesa and the Pea. What makes this book stand out is the bilingual text, which is in both Spanish and English. The warm illustrations inspired by the culture of Peru also make this book a winner. ⁠ ⁠ El Principe knows that this girl is the one for him but the Queen doesn’t agree. The Queen wants the perfect girl for his son and no woman on the land could match the Queen’s expectations. The Queen has a secret test in mind for the Princess. If the Princess wins the test she can marry the Prince. The Prince also has a plan that makes sure that the Princess will win the test. ⁠ ⁠ This classic tale injected with love is sure to make your heart melt and will make you smile in the end. In the illustrations, I loved the sly looks between the Princess and the Prince, as the Queen tries her best to quench their …

Wherever you go

What is the name of your most favorite road and why? We have traveled on roads since we can remember, to school, to home, to a grocery shop, to a friends place etc. We have probably walked or drove 1000s of times on various roads. When someone asks where do you live, we say the name of a road. Roads are an integral part of our life. Roads take us to places and also bring us home. In this book, an adventurous rabbit and his friends take a journey on roads to go through mountain peaks, cityscapes, to the stream and the sea. Roads take them past bridges, harbors and bays. After visiting many places and meeting new friends, the rabbit goes home. I loved the illustrations in this book which had winding roads on every page and cute animal characters. In this book, the author, Pat Zietlow Miller asks Which path should you choose? That’s easy to see. The one that will take you where you wish to be. This book was published in …

Cherry Tree

The Republic Day of India is on January 26, so this whole week I am highlighting books featuring India. Ruskin Bond is my favorite Indian children’s author. I grew up reading his stories and I cherish his writing style, which highlights the elements of nature. Cherry Tree is a picturebook by Ruskin Bond. Rakhi, is a six-year old girl who lives in Mussoorie. One day she eats delicious cherries and takes her grandfather’s advice to plant the seed. But the soil in her place is stony and might not be suitable for a cherry tree. Despite that, Rakhi plants the seed and protects it from hungry goats, savage bullock carts and other dangers. The cherry tree survives, flowers and gives first crop. It is a beautiful story that will encourage children to plant and nourish, and have a beautiful connection with nature. Do pick up this book if you have it available at your local library. Nothing is lucky if you put it away. You must make it work for you. – Cherry Tree

How Do You Dance?

When was the last time you danced? How Do You Dance by Thyra Heder is a celebration of dance. There are many ways to dance, you can jump, shake, moonwalk and jiggle, just to name a few. You can also dance anywhere, in your home, at the bus stop, at the grocery store etc. We can dance when we are happy and also dance when we are sad. In this book, everyone encourages a boy to dance and also give him many ideas about how, when and where to dance. Will the boy dance? If one of your new year resolutions is to lose weight, then this is the best way to lose some. If not, just dance, there is no need of an occasion to have some fun. This book definitely inspired me to dance. I read this book while making breakfast and I did it while swaying my hips. Well, nobody complained about how breakfast tasted so all is well that ends well. The book is published by Abrams Books for Young Readers …