Tag: Adventure

Illustrated by KALPART

 

SUMMARY

All Cats Go to Heaven is a touching children’s book that deals with difficult yet important topics, such as death, friendship, and accepting others for who they. The story is told through the eyes of Minka the cat, who has just become an angel and returns to earth to protect her friends.

A DIFFERENT KIND OF REVIEW READ

After many years, Minka the cat finds herself in Cat Heaven. She is kind of surprised because she thought that cats had nine lives. Is it because she’s lived a long life? Or, is it a myth? Who cares, she’s now in Cat Heaven and she is given one last earthly wish. What does she do? Hmmm, on the premise (that means pretending) that she wants to help her living friends, she makes a request to return to earth. To her surprise, her request is granted provided she follow the rules. Rules! They have rules in Heaven? There are always rules. They just want you to be safe. Especially if you are going on a great adventure like this. And, that what All Cats Go to Heaven is…a spectacular adventure. There are so many things I would like to tell you about the adventure, but I won’t spoil it for you. Just be ready to sing, dance, and laugh. Plus the pictures are awesome. 

The UNIQUE thing about All Cats Go to Heaven is its ETHNIC diversity.

Who would have known that about cats?

RECOMMENDATION

All Cats Go to Heaven is recommended for First Time Readers (6 – 8) Certain Middle Grade Readers (9 – 12), specifically those that tend to shy away from reading and those who love animals, will also like this book. It will also make a great Bedtime Story for those younger than 6.

BUY IT HERE:  Amazon

BIO – Valda V. Upenieks received her Ph.D. from the University of Washington and has worked in various nursing leadership and consulting roles throughout the country. “Minka was my first cat and she lived for 17 years,” she says. The author has two daughters, Laura and Lasma, who live i the greater Seattle area with their two dogs and two cats.

Illustrated by LEDA CHUNG

SUMMARY

Hong goes to Taiwan with her dad to visit her grandmother. She finds two BIG problems. First, there is an enormous beetle in the bathtub. Second, her grandmother’s noodle shop is being forced to close. What can she do?

A DIFFERENT KIND OF READ REVIEW

For the first time in her life Hong is visiting her grandmother in Taiwan. Unknown to her, she is about to become part of an exciting fantasy mystery. It all starts with a bug. Eww, a nasty bug. Hong doesn’t want it to fall on her while she is sleeping. Everyone knows that girls hate bugs, well some don’t, but that’s a different story. Let me tell you a little secret, over fifty percent of all boys like bugs, and that’s why they will love Superbeetle. But, I’m getting off the subject. Hong hates bugs, and is crawling over her head. What will she do if he falls. Not gonna happen, she screams and her father takes care of it.

Or does he? She’s afraid it’s going to come back. What does she do? She goes to find it. As she enters the hallway, she hears splashing water coming from the bathroom. Something isn’t right. She creeps towards the door, and slowly peeks inside and, and it’s a…. I really want to tell you what it is. You probably already know. I can tell you that…no, I can’t tell you. Hurry, just read Superbeetle. You’ll get the answers. Please, please, I can’t tell you anymore. What makes Superbeetle an ETHNIC read is Hong, Chi Chi and their families. What makes it UNIQUE read is the way that the author showed you how to say the Chinese words right inside the text.

RECOMMENDATION

Superbeetle is a Chapter book recommended for First Time Readers (1-8) I also think this book will appeal to boys included in the Middle Grade Readers (9-12) because of the bugs. Everyone will be drawn to the fantastic illustrations.

BUY IT HERE:  Amazon

BIO

Author S. Michele Chen lives in Southern California but visits her family in Taiwan when she can because the bugs no longer scare her.  She has published numerous crime fiction short stories and a novella under a secret identity.  Superbeetle is her first children’s book: www.superbeetlebook.com

Illustrator Leda Chung was born and raised in New England.  In 2010 life swept her away to Northern California where she currently resides with her boyfriend and their pet pigeon, Olive.  When she’s not creating art, you can find Leda experimenting in the kitchen, tending to her small plant-family, and rescuing pigeons and doves in the California Bay Area: www.ledachung.com

Illustrated by KELLY CLINE

SUMMARY

Sidney Snail is so sick of Slipperyville that he wants to go on an adventure–any adventure–anywhere but here! A timely word from mysterious Old Samuel Snail convinces Sidney to give Slipperyville one last chance before he snails out of town. 

Sidney will help show children (and adults!) that they can find magic, mindfulness, and meaningfulness in even the simplest things. All you need is a change of perspective. 

A DIFFERENT KIND OF READ REVIEW

Everyone loves to go on an adventure, or vacation as some of us call it. Be it Disneyland, Universal Studios, or Knotts Berry Farm. Okay those are my adventures. But would you like to know where you can find one of the best adventures. How about right in your own backyard? That’s what Sidney did. At first, he wanted to travel to someplace far away from Slipperville. But, he had never done that. So, he talked to old Sam who gave him some very sage (wise) advice. You can leave (Slipperyville) any old time. But it’s always wise to find out What’s at the End of Your Nose first.”* What’s at the end of his nose? How exactly does one find out what’s at the end of their nose? Welllll, first you have to…hmmm. Maybe… Come on, we always go through this. Me and my big mouth. It always wants to give out the entire story. But, as always, I know it will be so much more fun to read Sidney’s story yourself, so that you can be part of the adventure. But, maybe I’ll just tell you this little…. No, I’m done. What makes What’s at the End of Your Nose a UNIQUE read is the little teeny bit of romance. Eww? Awww, come on, it’s not bad. It will just make you smile.

RECOMMENDATION

What’s at the End of Your Nose is recommended for First Time Readers (1-8) and for boys of Middle Grade Readers to age 10 who love bugs. It also makes a great bedtime story.

BUY IT HERE:  Amazon

BIO – Becky Benishek studied English and Environmental Science at Lawrence University, and always hoped to turn her lifelong loves of writing, animals, and trees into something wonderful. She lives with her husband, Dave, and their guinea pig, Teddy. 

*Changes were made to the quote for clarity for my young readers and to highlight the book’s title.

 

SUMMARY

Mackenzie Clair is looking for a fresh start. She thinks she’ll find it in her favorite childhood vacation spot, but returning to Donn’s Hill awakens more than nostalgia. Mac regains a lost psychic ability to talk to the dead, and the poltergeist haunting her apartment is desperate to make her use that gift to find his killer.

Aided by her new roommate—a spirited Tortoiseshell cat named Striker—and the ghost-hunting crew of the nationally televised show Soul Searchers, Mac struggles to learn how to use her powers, but she’d better get a handle on them fast, because someone in town is hiding a deadly secret. If Mac can’t somehow divine the truth, Donn’s Hill will never be the same.

A DIFFERENT KIND OF READ REVIEW

Donn’s Hill opens with a bang. Within the first seven pages, the mystery starts. Not in the usual way with the police, a little old lady, or a high profile detective looking at the body and trying to find clues. No, this story starts with Mackenzie Clair, a twenty-seven-year-old woman sleeping in a hotel bed. 

Yes, the hotel is sleazy, rundown, and there was a lingering odor of stale cigarettes, but the room was clean and the price was right. Deep into sleep, she is startled by the weight of an intruder as he sits down on the side of her bed.

He makes no sounds, she can’t even hear him breathing, but she knows he’s there because she can smell a foul odor like rotting garbage. What does he want? Why doesn’t speak? Is he holding his breath? She is. After several minutes, she finally gets the nerve to turn on the lights. Her room is empty. What! Did she…? Wait! I’ve got to stop here. You’ve got to discover the rest for yourself. You won’t be disappointed.

Donn’s Hill is a paranormal mystery adventure. What makes it a UNIQUE read is the plot. While there are no twists, finding the killer is possible but impossible at the same time. THAT IS SOOOO GOOD! 

RECOMMENDATION

Donn’s Hill is recommended for Adults and Young Adults 16 and above.

BUT IT HERE:  Amazon

BIO – Caryn Larrinaga is a Basque-American mystery, horror, and fantasy writer living in Utah with her husband and cats. Despite obtaining a degree in Anthropology (which is much cooler than you might think), she explored several career paths before deciding that she had to follow her passion. Suddenly, writing fiction was the only thing that made sense.

Watching scary movies through split fingers terrified Caryn as a child and inspires her to write now. She lives in a 90-year-old house with a colorful history, and the creaking walls and narrow hallways send her running (never walking) up the stairs from her basement whenever she has no other choice but to go down there. Exploring her fears through writing makes Caryn feel a little bit less foolish for wanting a buddy to accompany her into the tool shed.

When her fingers aren’t glued to her laptop keyboard, Caryn also enjoys binge-watching superhero television shows, reading, playing video games, and filling up her phone’s flash memory with pictures of her cats. She loves music, and plays the bass guitar.

Caryn is an active member of the League of Utah Writers and the Utah Chapter of the Horror Writers Association.

 

 

SUMMARY

Creatures of Dawnia is a fantasy adventure series focusing on a group of animals and other ‘fantasy’ creatures living in the fictional city of Dawnia, and contains many diverse short stories focusing on the different adventures of the main characters. The first book, Baby Rescue, is a longer story that sees the main characters come together for the first time. The characters get to know one another and become friends whilst in the middle of an adventure to save a baby piglet from an evil goblin and his polar bear henchmen.

A DIFFERENT KIND OF READ

The main characters of Baby Rescue – Creatures of Dawnia—Book 1 are a very  different and unusual group. Let’s see there’s Fuzz, a mouse and Dack, a pterodactyl. They met when Fuzz was trying to get away from him because he didn’t want to be his dinner. Fuzz wasn’t successful, but that mouse used cunning and wit to stop Dack from eating him. Wait, that was after Carla, the sheep, brought the piglet to Bert, the pig, and Maggie, the cow, who lived on Dawnia Farm. It was Maggie’s job to take care of the piglet, but she couldn’t get it to stop crying. Somehow, the polar bears showed up, followed by the goblin. Then they were in the forest and met up with the dwarfs, Dougle, Dula, and Snuffy. Of course, their adventures took them to Louis. Now Louis is… Hmm, there is so much I want to tell you about Baby Rescue, but I don’t want to give away the story. The adventure is too great! I can tell you that the UNIQUE thing about Baby Rescue – Creatures of Dawnia—Book 1 is its cartoon features. Who doesn’t love a good cartoon?

RECOMMENDATION

Baby Rescue – Creatures of Dawnia—Book 1 is recommended for First Time Readers (1-8) and Middle Grade Readers to age 10.

BUY IT HERE;  Amazon or Smashwords 

BIO – Sam Savelli is a children’s writer, and creator of the internet series ‘Creatures of Dawnia‘ for children.  He first came up with ‘Creatures of Dawnia’ at the age of 12 years old, after drawing a set of animal characters from a drawing book. After putting all the characters together in a story called ‘Baby Rescue’, he went on to develop the characters and create ideas for more stories in the series. Over the next seven years, Sam wrote and created a great number of ‘Creatures of Dawnia’ stories.

In 2016 he wrote his one hundredth ‘Creatures of Dawnia’ story and finally decided that it was about time that he did something with these stories. Having written so much, for no one other than himself and his younger sisters, he wanted to publish the stories to a larger audience. So, he set up the website dawniacity.com and began publishing the stories online and releasing them as ebooks.

Aside from ‘Creatures of Dawnia’, Sam continues to work on a number of other writing projects. He aspired to become a writer from a young age, and plans to devote more time to his writing after completing his degree at the University of Warwick.

 

 

BEAUTY
C. D. NICHOLS
Illustrations by KALPART

SUMMARY

When Beauty, the liquid amber tree, pushes her head out of the warm earth, her mother is filled with pride when she sees her young sapling. As Beauty grows, she experiences the changing seasons, watches her leaves change colour, and loses her leaves to face the cold winter. When spring arrives and new leaves sprout on her now long branches, the birds nest and lay their eggs amongst her leaves.

A DIFFERENT KIND OF READ REVIEW

Babies are so precious, human babies, animals babies and now a liquid amber tree baby or sapling. Beauty is a fascinating bedtime story. It tells the story of a young amber tree from sapling to full growth with adventure and excitement. The world is full of wonder for this young tree, and we watch as she changes during each and every season. Just as she had become full grown, something happens in the forest. Something very, very terrible, and Beauty— Please read it and let me know what happens. The graphics are astounding. Beauty is a UNIQUE read because of its inanimate characters.

RECOMMENDATION

Beauty is recommended for First Time Readers (1-8).

BUY IT HERE: AMAZON

BIO – C.D. Nichols is a retired high school teacher’s aide. She grew up in Guildford, New South Wales, Australia, and after marriage settled in South Penrith, New South Wales, located at the base of the Blue Mountains. This story was inspired by a drive one early autumn day to Mount Wilson, a small hamlet in the Blue Mountains. This is her fourth book.

THE AGE OF MYTHS & LEGENDS
BOOK ONE: MONSTERS
Written and Illustrated by T. D. HILL

SUMMARY

Drawn from the myths and legends of the first inhabitants of North America, the delightful tales, collected for this book series, not only offer insights into tribal character and beliefs, but they also celebrate the diverse tribal traditions of rich and powerful cultures that are still relevant today.
Beautifully illustrated throughout, this book holds an amazing collection of tales concerning the many evil creatures that once haunted the dreams and nightmares of the Indigenous tribes of North America. Told in an enchanting, yet unencumbered style, this collection seeks to shed light upon the richness, wisdom, grace, and depth of the North American tribal cultures and their timeless myths and legends.

A DIFFERENT KIND OF READ REVIEW

There’s nothing more thrilling than sitting with family and/or friends around a campfire, in front of a fireplace, on a couch or simply lying the floor with bent knees crossed and elbows supporting your wide-eyed face as you listen to an ancestral story of your family’s past. What makes the story even more intriguing is when you get to share someone else’s past. This time, I had the privilege of reading and learning about the myths and legends of the American Natives populating the United States of America.

The Age of Myths & Legends – Book One: Monsters presents stories about giants, ogres, wolves, mermaids, witches, sea creatures, and little people just to name a few. Did I say little people you ask? Yes, I did. Little people can be quite vicious, I have so many stories about them, but alas, I’m not talking about my history—I’m talking about The Age of Myths & Legends- Book One: Monsters. Of course there was that group of little people who weren’t vicious. In fact, they were quite interesting as they—oh, I can’t tell you about that one. I’m going to have to let you read it yourself, because I want to tell you about Skunny Wundy who encountered a Stone Giant in my favorite legend of the book.

Skunny Wundy was a master storyteller. You see, he liked to embellish his stories. However, instead of elaborating the story’s details, he liked putting himself in it. Yes, he was better known as a braggart. Now, for some reason, this only bothered the Hoya’nê (the most powerful man in the village.) You see one day, he questioned him. “Skunny Wundy! What would you do if you saw a Stone Giant?” Without hesitation, Skunny Wundy smiled and replied, “Why I would break every bone in the giant’s body! I would tear off his arms and legs!… The Stone Giants fear me. Just one mention of my name would cause them to flee in terror!”

I am so sorry, I can’t tell you the rest of this story other than the fact that it is very hilarious and it alone is worth the price of the book. Naturally, The Age of Myths and Legends – Book One: Monsters is an ETHNIC read because of its diverse characters.

RECOMMENDATION

The Age of Myths & Legends – Book One: Monsters is recommended for All Ages. Now, there are some stories that may be a little scary and/or mature for younger audiences, so parental discretion is advised. However, there are some great bedtime stories, so snuggle up and enjoy.

BUY IT HERE: AMAZON     KINDLE EBOOK

BIO – Author/Illustrator: T.D.Hill (Wichita, Kiowa, Pawnee) is a Native American writer, artist, and motivational speaker. Much of his writing draws upon his experiences as an Indigenous American with ancestry from several tribes. He grew up in Southwestern Oklahoma and now lives in Austin, Texas.
He can be reached at: NATIVE TALES

THE LIFE OF NUZZELS
NUZZELS THE NOSEY SKUNK
FINIS T. JONES
Illustrations by KALPART

SUMMARY

This charming book follows a young skunk that loves adventure. Nuzzels goes against his mother’s wishes, as well as the advice of his siblings, when he leaves the safety of home to visit the forest. He meets several new animal friends.

A DIFFERENT KIND OF READ REVIEW

Nuzzels did something that he wasn’t supposed to do. We’ve all done that at least once in our short lives. You know when Mom or Dad tells you not to touch this, or do that, and definitely, absolutely, positively do not go outside. Come on Mom, we’d all do that if it led to a great adventure, and for Nuzzels the Nosey Skunk it did just that.

The Life of Nuzzels – Nuzzels the Nosey Skunk is a little animal mystery for kids. What makes it UNIQUE is the interesting twist that is given towards the end of the story. Let’s start with the mystery part first. As Nuzzels leaves his home he comes across a family of animals who were small and had bushy tails. As he got closer to them, they stood up on their rear legs, sniffed the air, and then ran off. Ran off, from this handsome little guy. Oooooh, ha ha ha, that’s right, he’s a skunk, a smelly skunk. That’s why they ran away, but what were those animals? How about this group, they had short tails, furry coats round ears and long noses. They seem a lot like the others but they’re completely different. Alas, they too could smell Nuzzels, so he left without trying to talk to them.

Now for that little twist—what? I can’t tell them about the twist? Whyyyyy? I really want to tell them about it. Okay, okaaaay. You’re right I don’t want to spoil this delightful book for them.

RECOMMENDATION

The Life of Nuzzels – Nuzzels the Nosey Skunk is for FIRST TIME READERS (1-8). It would also make a great bedtime story.

BUY IT HERE: Amazon

BIO – Finis T. Jones was born on a farm in Honey Grove, Texas in 1929. His childhood was difficult, to say the least. At a very early age he developed a wild imagination, partly to escape his many tribulations. He lived and worked on his parents’ farm until, at the age of twelve, he said goodbye and hitched a ride to Dallas, where after bending the truth about his age, he got a job with Sears & Roebuck. He had been there for a couple years when he decided to move to Houston. Here he met and married the love of his life. Many years after leaving the farm, he returned to Honey Grove to visit his parents for the first time. He took along his beautiful wife and two of their three children. Through the good times and the bad, he has never lost that incredible imagination, which shows in the stories he tells.

MYSTERY ANIMAL SOLUTIONS   Squirrels, Bears

BUZZY AND THOMAS MOVE INTO THE PRESIDENT’S HOUSE

VICKI TASHMAN

Illustrated by FATIMA STAMATO

 

SUMMARY

It’s 1801 and life is good for Buzzy the dog. She lives with Thomas Jefferson at Monticello, but her life turns upside down when Thomas tells her that they’re moving to the President’s House. Buzzy doesn’t want to move. She’s afraid to leave the comfort of Monticello. What will she do? This enjoyable children’s book teaches kids about President Jefferson, the new breed of dog he brought home from France and confronting issues about moving. If your child loves books by Robert Dawson like “Ben and Me,” then he’ll love Buzzy! Historical fiction at its best: learning from the pets of famous people in history.

A DIFFERENT KIND OF READ REVIEW

Have you ever had a chance to talk to a dog? I mean really sit down, just you and the dog and have a conversation? Why are you laughing? Okay, maybe it is a little funny because you say dogs can’t talk. Yes, I do know that it is common knowledge that dogs don’t know what you are saying either—or do they? I know my dog understood every word I ever said to her, and showed her understanding and responses through head tilts, whimpers, and quiet barks.

So I wasn’t surprised at how Buzzy expressed her feelings when she heard about Thomas moving from Monticello to the President’s House and that he planned to take her with him. She wasn’t…, You see none of the other animals were… I expected her to—well she didn’t do that. Then, I expected her to—oh, that didn’t happen either. What? What did I expect would happen? What? What did she do? You’ll solve that mystery when you read Buzzy and Thomas Move Into The President’s House. What is it that makes Buzzy and Thomas Move into the President’s House a UNIQUE read? It’s what Buzzy did just before they left Monticello. You know, I could have never gotten my dog to do that. Do what? Are you kidding? You’ll find out when you read it.

RECOMMENDATION

Buzzy and Thomas Move Into The President’s House is recommended for First Time Readers between the ages of 4 – 8.

BUY IT HERE: AMAZON

BIO – Vicki Tashman has always loved historical fiction. Inspiration struck four years ago when her daughter graduated from college and moved back home with two cats in tow. She imagined the cats belonging to Cleopatra and, wow, the stories they could tell! After researching many people in history, she settled on writing her first children’s historical fiction book about Thomas Jefferson and his dog, Buzzy. Other books in the works are about Queen Victoria and her dog, Dash, the Wright Brothers and their dog.    Vicki has a Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism from the University of Colorado. She is a breast cancer survivor and has been an advocate for ten years. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI), Children’s Book Writers of Los Angeles (CBW-LA), the Publisher’s Association of Los Angeles (PALA) and The Independent Book Publishers Association (IBPA). She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and their two golden retrievers, Ricky and Georgia.

 

BEDTIME FOR BUZZY
T. J. HACKWORTH
Illustrated by SEAN BAPTIST

SUMMARY

A young boy is playing with his toys and doesn’t want to go to bed at bedtime. One by one his toys come to life in his imagination and convince him that going to sleep is the best way to continue his adventures.

A DIFFERENT KIND OF READ REVIEW

There’s no doubt about it. Bedtime for Buzzy is a bedtime story. No more and no less. It starts off very, very good, but towards the middle end of the story, an unexpected twist turns everything upside down. Even with this twist, the book is a good read. However, I caution parents to read the story themselves before reading it to their children so that they can make the proper adjustments. The UNIQUE thing about Bedtime for Buzzy is it’s storyline. It’s storyline? Yes, you’ll see.

RECOMMENDATION

Bedtime for Buzzy is recommended for First Time Readers (0 – 8).

BUY IT HERE: Amazon

AUTHOR BIO:

T. J. Hackworth is a writer of short stories and children’s fiction.  His work has appeared recently in the Wisconsin Review. He lives in Brooklyn, New York with his wife and daughter.  And he never has trouble going to bed.

ILLUSTRATOR BIO:

Sean Baptist is a freelance illustrator with numerous publications featuring his art, design, and illustration over the last decade. He studied illustration at Northern Michigan University. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.  And he sometimes has trouble going to bed when he should.