Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Picture Book Pick: The Honeybee

The Honeybee
By Kirsten Hall
Illustrations by Isabelle Arsenault
Atheneum Books for Young Readers
48 pages
ISBN: 9781481469975

This beautiful cover pops and the book's end papers are decked out in the bees' signature colors: yellow and black and will catch your eye, but the happy illustrations and text that follows the production of honey and the bees' lives will keep young readers entertained. The honeybee is one of the world's endangered species and young readers will cheer for the bees after reading all about them. The bees are shown working and on the production line where they, "Chew, chew--we're changing its makeup,/ We're giving the nectar a chemical shake-up." The faces and features of each bee is unique and children will love their personalities.

Did you know that bees can smell fear? The book instructs people to stand still and be calm and the bee or bees will most likely fly away. However, bees are territorial, so it warns not to get too close to the hive.

A page from the author with bee facts and what children (and adults) can do to help the bees and save them is included.

A cute must-read for the budding animal activist, environmental warrior, budding young scientist or beekeeper, or anyone who loves animals and nature.

FTC Required Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. I did not receive monetary compensation for this review.

Friday, May 18, 2018

Picture Book Pick: How Do Dinosaurs Learn To Read?

How Do Dinosaurs Learn To Read?
by Jane Yolen
Illustrations by Mark Teague
The Blue Sky Press/Scholastic
32 pages
ISBN: 978133233018

Available: Jane 26, 2018

The beloved Teague dinosaurs are back and they are amusing and captivating as they learn to read and treat their books with care. Every parent and librarian will love this book for teaching young ones how to turn pages carefully and how to keep their books away from water.

Fans of the dream team Yolen & Teague will love this latest addition to the series. As expected, each dinosaur makes its appearance on the end papers with their names. Reading tips are included.

Highly, highly recommended for every child's personal library. A great addition to any picture book collection.

FTC Required Disclaimer: I received the ARC from the publisher. I did not receive monetary compensation for this review.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Graphic Pick: Making Friends

Making Friends
by Kristen Gudsnuk
272 pages; full color illustrations
ISBN: 9781338139211

Available July 31, 2018

Danny had her tight circle of friends in sixth grade but now that she's in middle school, she's a little lost. Everyone has a different lunch shift and different classes than she does. She's feeling a little left out--a lot left out! When she "inherits" her great aunt's sketch book, she discovers that her kooky aunt might actually have had magical powers. Danny accidentally creates her new best friend. Suddenly "Making Friends" is exactly that! Creating a new person!

For fans of graphic novels and ages 8-12 should enjoy this spirited romp.

FTC Required Disclaimer: I received this ARC from the publisher. I did not receive monetary compensation for this review.

Friday, May 11, 2018

YA Slasher Pick: There's Someone Inside Your House

There's Someone Inside Your House
by Stephanie Perkins
287 pages
ISBN: 9780525426011

There's a slasher loose in Osborne High School  and more than likely probably someone they see every day. As student bodies begin piling up in their small town in Nebraska, the police investigate all the teens who know each other. The murders don't seem to be connected in any way the police can decipher and they are getting more and more brutal.

Makani is new to town, having just moved from Hawaii to escape a past that is bound to intrude on her present. When she first sees goth boy Ollie, she's in love. The relationship between the two characters make this book special. When Makani is targeted, both Ollie and her grandmother step in to save her life. The killer is nearly apprehended but outruns Ollie (btw, naked Ollie!).

The police are incompetent and Makani and Ollie do more to solve the case and save themselves than anyone else. There are moments of great slasher gore and the book picks up, but so many more moments of promises that are dashed before the reader can enjoy the horror. Makani's BIG secret turns out to be not so big and not so terrifying.

This book doesn't fit the romance genre and it's not horror, maybe horrifying romance? Cover art will sell this one from the shelves and Stephanie Perkins' fans will likely buy it. If you are looking for a solid horror book for teens, this one just doesn't deliver.

Grade 9 and up.
FTC Required Disclaimer: I received the book from the publisher. I did not receive monetary compensation for this review.