#BookReview by Lou of My Sister Is A Monster, My Brother Is A Monster by Natalie Reeves Billing @BillingReeves @RandomTTours #MonstrousMe #ChildrensBook

My Sister Is A Monster, My Brother Is A Monster
by Natalie Reeves Billing
Rated: 5 stars *****

I am absolutely delighted to be sharing with you the next installment of this wonderful series. Each book is complete within themselves and are worth collecting them all for the complete family of them. It is a split-perspective story, so you see both the sister and brother’s point of view. First one and then flip the book over to see the next, in whatever order you like, so it’s a bit like 2 stories for the price of 1 and with all the same excellent characters in both. It’s fun and it encourages a sense of self and empathy. Find out more about the author, the blurb and my full review of this excellent book as you meander down the page. Discover a link to activities that accompany the book after my review.
Thanks to Random Things Tours for inviting me to review. Thanks to the author Natalie Reeves Billing for sending me the book.

About the Author

Natalie Reeves Billing. Author Pic (5)Natalie Reeves Billing is a Liverpool lass with a dark sense of humour, which often spills onto the page. She loves to write spooky, fantastical stories for young audiences, and dabbles in poetry, contemporary fiction.
Natalie spent most of her early career in the music industry as a performer and professional songwriter. This lead, almost inevitably, to storytelling.

Natalie is an Arvon Foundation friend and is a student of the Golden Egg Academy. She is mentored under the Lloyds Bank SSE program, with her Bubs Literacy project. She is published in several anthologies with her poetry and flash fiction, including the Writing on the Wall, Read Now, Write Now, and is involved in several collaborations with fellow writers across poetry, song, and scriptwriting.
Her new book, My Mummy is a Monster (part of the Monstrous Me collection) will be available in March 2020 and Carry Love in June 2020
Connect with Natalie on Twitter @BillingReeves.

My Brother Graphic 1

Blurb

Two Books in 1! The Monstrous Me Collection are split perspective books looking at situations from other points of view, helping children develop a sense of balance, roundedness and wellbeing. Readers can literally and figuratively, turn the story on its head, and look at the very same situations from different angles. In this book, a brother and sister are convinced the other is a monster. But, are they really? When we look at the story from the other side, we see a very different story.

My sister Cover

    My Brother FINAL cover

Review

This is again, another terrific book that flips 2-ways to tell 2 stories. This time it focuses on the brother and the sister. It, like other books in this collection, has interactive elements of trying to find the Monstrometer as you go along. It adds an extra layer of fun and it is great that there are activities on her Lollipop Lodge website, which you can find just after the review.
Half the book is My Brother Is A Monster and then you flip it over to find My Sister is a Monster, or indeed, vice-versa, which is also fun and quite different.

The story starts at breakfast time, moving onto school and back home again before heading to bed. It tells of how the brother has the worst eating habits, bully’s his sister at school and then at home, won’t let her play with his toys and messes up the rules and the house. Then at the end, it demonstrates how he does love his sister really and does something courageous for her.
On the flipside, her brother sees his sister as being a monster as she is fussy at breakfast and has rules and then come school, won’t join in any games she thinks she will lose. At home she won’t leave her brother alone and tidies up rather prematurely. After all that, she then gives her brother a lovely homemade gift and shows she does love him after all.

The book is well-rounded and encourages empathy and understanding as children will be able to see through the eyes of both characters and work out how things really are and what is percieved. I has wonderful humour, rhythm and illustrations throughout will easily engage children.
This is a book that is part of a great collection that will be sure to delight children throughout at home and in the classroom. It can be used for both reading for pleasure and in a nursery and young classroom school setting, such as Reception or Primary 1, for fun and for stimulating conversation. 

Link to Activities

www.lollipoplodge.com

My Brother BT Poster

#Bookreview by Lou of #ChildrensBook for 5-7 year olds What The World Needs Now: Bees by Cheryl Rosebush @cherylrosebush @freshly_press @lovebooksgroup #lovebookstours

What The World Needs Now: Bees
By Cheryl Rosebush
Illustrated by Zuzana Svobodova
Rated: 5 stars *****

First, I took part in the cover reveal. Now I have even more for you. I am starting off the blog to a review of this wonderful book for 5-7 year olds. It’s a sweet, well illustrated story mixed with facts in various ways that will both entertain and add to children’s knowledge.
Thanks to Freshly Press for supplying me with a copy of the book and to Love Books Group for inviting me to review.
Find out more in the blurb and review and discover more about this intrepid author below.

BeesTour

Blurb

Inside the sprawling forests of Ontario, Canada lives a  friendly black bear named Melly. One of Melly’s favourite  things to do is EAT! And many of the delicious fruits she  snacks on wouldn’t grow without the help of some very  important little forest creatures.

What the World Needs Now: Bees! explores the vital role  busy, busy bees play in helping plants to grow the food  people and animals love to eat.

bees Cover_Final RGB

Review

Bees… We all know how important bees are to the environment and to the human and animal race. This bright and very cute book tells a story as to why in a way that children can follow… Children can follow the black bear – Melly, who is in Ontario, Canada. It is however quite a universal, environmental story.
It is fun and cute to explore with Melly through the forest to the berries she eats onto the flowers she plays in to the friends she meets. Throughout it also tells the story of the busy bees and how they help pollinate flowers and food and why that is important. Children can also learn in little segments, away from the main story, in neat fact boxes, about the bear too. There is minor trepidation when chemical pesticides are used, until natural sprays are used instead. It’s an absolutely great story that is pitched very well for 5-7 year olds. They get a cute story, plus facts along the way and at the back there is a great page about bees from around the world and other wildlife species that can be found in Ontario, Canada.

About the Author

What The World Needs Now -author picI was born and raised in Southern Ontario, Canada in the cities of Burlington and St. Catharines. Long before the internet and mobile phones (now I’m aging myself!), my childhood was spent in forests and parks, on bike rides, and playing hide and seek until the streetlights came on. My family did comical Griswold-style road trips in wood-paneled station wagons. We spent summers swimming in friends’ backyards. These are my very fortunate roots.

I knew from an early age that my destiny would take me far from Southern Ontario. I graduated high school and moved to Montreal to study international politics at McGill University. The subject fascinated me, but as graduation approached, I realized I didn’t know what I wanted to do with a degree in international politics. I didn’t want to become a lawyer. I didn’t want to become a politician or civil servant. The media industry, on the other hand, intrigued me.

The West Coast of Canada also intrigued me. So, after graduating McGill, I packed up again, moved to Vancouver and took the first media job I could get at a local Top 40 radio station (Z.95.3) in Vancouver. Best job. Great bosses. I learned so much. But after a couple of years there, the winds of change came calling again.

September 11, 2001. In a heartbeat, Z95.3 went from playing Britney Spears to reporting up-to-the-minute information on the local, national and international fallout of the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington. In that moment, I knew I had found my calling. I wanted to do something that was needed on a good day, and needed even more on a bad day. I wanted to become a full-time journalist.

So, I packed my bags again (a running theme in my life), and moved to Ottawa, Ontario to do my Masters of Journalism. Another incredible two years culminated in me getting a research internship with the Canadian Broadcast Corporation (CBC) in London, England. That position helped me land back in Montreal for a second chapter there as local news reporter for the CBC. While I was there, I wore just about every hat you could in CBC’s radio and TV newsrooms. Depending on the day, I was a researcher, producer, reporter, or online writer. I even filled in for the weather reports every once in a while.

Website: https://www.cherylrosebush.com/

Lou’s #Review of How Do You Make A Rainbow @crowehoho @MacMillanKidsUK #ChildrensBook #KidsLit

How Do You Make A Rainbow
By Caroline Crowe
Rated: 5 stars *****

Beautifully written, this is no ordinary rainbow. This is one that promotes kindness and encourages children to care and not take things for granted. It’s a gloriously enticing book that’s full of joyous positivity and fun!
Perfect for homes and the classroom, it’s a treat of a book, with a story and activities.
Thanks to MacMillan Kids for accepting my request to review.
Please read further for the blurb and full review.

How Do You Make A Rainbow Cover

How do you make a rainbow? This joyful story, written by Caroline Crowe and illustrated by Cally Johnson-Isaacs, shows how to find colour and hope when days seem dim and grey: celebrating love, positivity and the precious relationship between a child and her grandad.

Stuck inside on a cloudy day, a little girl asks her grandad to help her paint a rainbow on the sky. But as Grandad tells her, rainbows aren’t painted on the sky, they grow out of kindness, hope, and helping other people.

How Do You Make a Rainbow? is a reassuring, heart-warming story of colours, kindness, community and nature, that shows that brighter times are always around the corner.

How Do You Make A Rainbow Cover

Review

This book is beautifully written and cute. This is far from any ordinary rainbow. It has colour, but more than that too… This presents ideas of how to paint a rainbow and it is different from what you may imagine… There is a story of  A grand daughter who is curious about the rainbow in the sky, so asks her grandad about how to paint it, but it turns out the rainbow is made out of all different things. The book oozes with love and kindness and of untroubled times. It talks of the symbolism of a rainbow and what it means to them in a lyrical story-form. Grandad talks of how it is hope and kindness and a lot of other things from the natural world thrown into the mix as well as all the people you may know or may meet. It’s all the simple things people take for granted or don’t really think of. It’s incredibly heartwarming. It serves as this cosy reminder to children of what is good and positive around them and promotes kindness and encourages children to look around them and to think of who and what they see and really, properly care. It’s an important message as well as lots of fun for children. It champions who and what is good within the world they live in.

To go with the story is a crafting idea for each idea presented on each page for what makes up a rainbow and encourages children to think of all the things that would make up theirs, so it encourages discussion and also writing.

This book would be great in the home and any primary classroom and library.

#Review of #ChildrensBook – The Puddle People by Tommy Ellis @TommyEllis14 #MiddleGrade

The Puddle People
By Tommy Ellis
Rated: 4 Stars ****

Good versus Bad, Adventure, Action, Science – The Puddle People (the first in a series), will entertain ages 8-11 year olds who are looking to enter a new world to read for pleasure.
Thanks to Tommy Ellis for sending me over a copy to review.
Check out the eye-catching cover, blurb and my review.

Puddle People new cover - extra headroom

Blurb

Eleven-year-old Ethan Myles is having a bad day: His summer holiday has been cancelled, the weird glowing crystal he found in the garden has given him an electric shock, draining him of enjoyment, and his mum is suffering from a terminal illness.
If that wasn’t bad enough, he’s only got minutes to stop a race of strange watery beings, led by evil ice-man, Doctor Freeze, sucking the fun from humanity, leaving the entire human race in the darkness of everlasting misery.
Will Ethan and his nine-year-old sister Amber manage to defeat Doctor Freeze before it’s too late, or will all human pleasure cease to exist?

Puddle People new cover - extra headroom

Review

Suitable for 8-11 year olds, it places The Puddle People firmly in the Middle-Grade market. Jump in a puddle and see where it takes you. When I started out reading, it was Puddle Lane. Now for 8-11 year old kids, it’s Puddlemere to meet the Puddle People. The Puddle People is one of the latest books kids can have fun with and add to their book collection to read for pleasure, to begin a whole new adventure. This is book 1 of a series…. book 2 will come soon…

There is some sibling rivalry between Ethan and Amber. Ethan also gets a right telling off from his mum that will resonate with both parents and children alike.  Parents who tell their children so many times not to do something and children, for how many times they’ve heard this. This is even though his mum isn’t at all well. It demonstrates well that nothing gets past parents, even when there is a health issue. It doesn’t dwell on this and instead develops into an action-packed adventure.

Ethan and Amber discover a cave, a strange piece of quartz and odd watery behaviour from a puddle and end up meeting Storm Floodwater, Private Drizzle, Private Drip and the evil Doctor Freeze. There is also an Emporer who is contemplating how humans, or Overlanders as residents of Puddlemere call them, can bring fun and against the evil Doctor Freeze’s wishes. There’s some trepidation and parts I’m sure kids will gasp at and want to continue in this relatively fast-paced book, where they will also discover some science, especially in the form of chemical symbols, neatly added as part of the story-line. In certain places, there is a bit of darkness, but mostly not so much different from action hero movies and tv shows. There are no illustrations, hence more for confident and gaining confident readers, but the descriptions are good and it’s a world that children will be able to imagine and have fun with.

This is a book suitable for confident readers or those gaining confidence in their reading.

Hedgy-A and the Honey Bees by Ryan Mizzen @ryan_mizzen #Bookreview by Lou #ChildrensBook

Hedgy-A and the Honey Bees
By Ryan Mizzen
Illustrated by Paul Winward
Rated: 4 stars ****

Hedgy-A and the Honey Bee by Ryan Mizzen,  is a charming book that has an important environmental message which is written well for 5-7 year old children. It has great rhythm to its story-telling rhyme, which really captures children of these ages and has a good energy to it as well as some humour. Check out more in the blurb and review, then find out more about the author and how he has become quite a man of influence in matters of the environment. Find out why he has decided to write a book for the 5-7 years old range in a section below as well and why he is writing, what is The Time To Care Series of which this is book 1. Each further book will have a different character and ecological issue being addressed in story form in a way that has been written through being inspired by Julia Donaldson.
You can also discover a bit more about the illustrator, who has delightful pictures to entice children in and bring the story alive. You will also find buy links too.

I thank Ryan Mizzen for contacting me via my Contact Me part of my blog and for sending me, at first a PDF copy of Hedgy – A and the Honey Bees and then one of his “author copies” amongst his busy keyworking schedule.

Hedgey A Cover (B)

Blurb

“We have to do something before its’ too late,
To help save the bees from a horrible fate”

One day – Hedgy-A is visited by his friend Brizzy the honey bee. Hedgy-A learns that honey bees are becoming sick because chemicals called pesticides are being used on plants. But he knows just what to do and sets off for London to see the Queen, who he hopes can save the bees!

Link to purchase: Amazon
Libraries can order from Ingram Spark

Hedgey A Cover physical book

Review

Hedgy-A is a very cute hedgehog who lives beneath a beehive in this lovely rhyming book with beautiful illustrations of Hedgy – A and his friends and surroundings. The book gently encourages kindness and helping others. It is also about how bees make their honey and the impact the environment created by human’s, including farmers have on them. Hedgy – A wants to save the bees and travelling off to London, he visits in hunt of the Queen to tell her what is going on and to ask for her help to also save the day for the bees. It becomes fun, but also really packs a punch as it draws young children to the realities of what is happening.

You of course don’t need to see The Queen to help the bees, but it does all however create a very fun and inspired story that has a healthy helping of passion and strength of character at its heart that shows working together and caring can help make a postive impact in what is a lively story.

This is a book that schools and parents/caregivers alike can use well with their 5-7 year old children. It has enough to entertain and feed their curiosity about the natural world as it delivers an important message.

A note from the author:

What’s unique about the story and why did I write it?

This story is unique in the sense that it is drawing attention to pesticide use for a younger audience,
who will inherit the world we leave behind. Bees are crucial to our food supply and their numbers
have drastically plummeted in recent years, raising massive concerns. Research has shown that this
is linked to pesticides and neonicotinoids, some of which are banned in the EU, but still available
elsewhere. Meanwhile the UN has shown that it’s possible to eliminate pesticide use and still
produce high yields of crops with other measures. But the pesticide companies have formed a strong
lobby group and have no intention of stopping production.

About the Author

www.ryanmizzen.com

Ryan Mizzen Author ImageRyan is a Children’s Book Author. He holds a First Class BSc in Climate Change (Hons) from Coventry
University and a Distinction in an MA in Creative Writing (via Distance Learning) from Teesside
University. He has also completed online writing courses with Oxford University and the University
of East Anglia.
In 2018, Ryan was named as an Environmental Changemaker, following on from the UN Young
Champions of the Earth competition, where he proposed using fiction as a form of science
communication to spread awareness about the climate crisis to a wider audience. Prior to which, he
worked in the energy efficiency and offshore wind industries for four years.
He’s had climate change articles published by The Independent, Africa Geographic, Thomson Reuters
Foundation, The South African and he’s been interviewed about sustainability by Thrive Global. He’s
also written for outlets including IKSurfMag, Kiteworld Magazine, Age UK, The Writing Cooperative
and Holistic Health Magazine amongst others. His other interviews appear in the Huffington Post
and Authority Magazine.
His debut self-published picture book, Hedgey-A and the Honey Bees is now available using the buy link – Amazon
“A person of great influence.” – Thrive Global

About The Illustrator

www.paulwinwardillustration.com
Paul has over 30 years’ experience working in advertising and in a freelance capacity. He is an
illustrator with extensive experience designing books, e-books, logos and illustrations for websites.
Some of his other illustrated books include The Three Detectives, Kob the Antelope, Snowflake’s
Adventure on Mount Lifelong, The Journey to River Rose, and 1,2, Think!

#BookReview by Lou of After The War – From Auschwitz to Ambleside by Tom Palmer @tompalmerauthor #ChildrensBook @_Reading_Rocks_ #WorldWar2 #QuickReview

After The War – From Auschwitz to Ambleside by Tom Palmer

Tom Palmer very kindly shared with me, the first chapter of his latest children’s book – After the War to take a look at, please find the blurb and a bit about chapter one and also links to Free Resources below.

After the War by Tom Palmer

About The Author

Tom Palmer was a reluctant reader as a child and credits articles about football with getting him into reading. He went on to become a bookseller and then worked in reader
development. He is now the multi-award-winning author of several books for young readers including the acclaimed reboot of the Roy of the Rovers series and the FCBG Children’s Book  Acquisition.
Award winner Armistice Runner. In 2019 Tom was awarded the National Literacy Trust’s
Ruth Rendell Award in recognition of his significant contribution to literacy work in the UK.
He lives in Halifax.

Blurb

Summer 1945. The Second World War is finally over and Yossi, Leo and Mordecai are among three hundred children who arrive in the English Lake District.

Having survived the horrors of the Nazi concentration camps, they’ve finally reached a place of safety and peace, where they can hopefully begin to recover.

Will life by the beautiful Lake Windermere be enough to bring hope back into all their lives?

(Accelerated Reader Quiz No: 238677, Points 4.00, Book Level 4.80,
Middle Years – Key Stage 2)

After the War by Tom Palmer

Thoughts on Chapter One

Readers immediately meet Yossi on a Stirling Bomber in turbulent skies. He captures action and atmosphere in a way that children can instantly become immersed into and understand.  You get a quick glimpse into his life and why he loves aeroplanes so much and believes in the hope that they will bring. The enormity and excitement of them sits well with the sadness that his hometown in Poland had been bombed during the second world war and knows about the concentration camps.
Yossi then meets Mordecai and Leo, both whom are 15 and it brings about some admiration between them for what skills they possess. It adds the humanity of respect and a bonding of sorts.

They are on their way to England to escape war and have so many hopes of a different future ahead of them. There is a realistic anxiety and questioning that comes from Mordecai.

This is just from the first chapter, so imagine what children would gain from the rest of the book? I would think a lot and there are also classroom friendly resources.

Website/Resources Linkhttps://tompalmer.co.uk/free-stuff/

Twitter: @tompalmerauthor