Saturday, December 31, 2011

Kid loves watching Sprout

Thanks for the guest post by Bradly Watkins

There are some things you never learn until you have kids. People can tell you, but you don’t understand or retain the information until you actually experience it. Some things are more important than others, but sometimes the simple things are equally important. My parents have always had all the channels direct tv offers. They watch a lot of television, which is fine, but we never thought we needed the channels. Well, then we had a kid. He has fallen in love with a channel called Sprout. Yes, this is an actual channel. It is completely geared for children and has all the classic kids’ shows. It can actually have some very educational shows, but it is in a package that we never needed or wanted. Well, at least we never needed or wanted it before kids. Now we are proud supporters of Sprout and ever PBS. My son is in heaven and to be honest it makes those rainy days a lot easier on me too. I never thought I would be adjusting my budget in order to have all the channels, but kids make you do crazy things.

Fish for a Free Book: December 31


Welcome to the New Year's edition of Fish for a Free Book! Hope everyone enjoyed their holidays and is looking forward to another new and exciting year!

If you are hosting a children's book giveaway, or if you found a giveaway somewhere on the net that you just have to share, I'd love to have you share your links with us here on our weekly giveaway linky so that we can all stop by and enter.

If you're looking for more children's book giveaways, be sure to visit
Brimful Curiosities' Full to the Brim,
Winning Readings (listings of adult and children's book giveaways),
and Got Great Giveaways? (linky of adult and children's book giveaways at I Am a Reader, Not a Writer)

Please post your links however you wish. Some like to include their blog name, some just want to leave the prize and the ending date. Post it whatever way you feel like, but make sure that the prize listing and the date the giveaway ends is listed. And make sure you post a link directly to your giveaway - not just to your main blog page.

Here's an example:
Your name: Lori Calabrese Writes--Two YA Novels--6/24
Your URL: http://loricalabrese.blogspot.com/2011/06/welcome-to-midsummers-eve-giveaway-hop.html

Now it's your turn. Leave your links here...
(If you're reading this in a reader, please click through to the original post)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Celebrating the New Year with a toast to champagne

wine.com infographic
Brought To By Wine.com, Purveyors of Fine Wine and Champagne

It's almost 2012 (that's really crazy by the way!) and millions of people across the globe will be popping a cork and toasting to a brand new year with a bottle of bubbly, so I figured to celebrate the New Year, we could have our own toast here at Lori Calabrese Writes and give a toast to champagne! I've always been a sucker for research and I must say I learned some things I never knew before. For instance, did you know that Dom Perignon was a monk and is credited for 'inventing' Champagne? The bubbly drink also played a large role in history from ending wars to being sipped by many royalty.

Turns out the bubbles in champagne were an accident and in Dom Perignon's day, bubbles were considered a serious wine flaw. But today, champagne bubbles are so popular, it's even a flavor for Jelly Belly jelly beans!! There's a good conversation-starter about sparkling wines for your New Year's Eve bash.

So here's to a great New Year and as Phyllis McGinley (a poet and writer of children's books) said...

Stir the eggnog, lift the toddy,
Happy New Year, everybody.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Fish for a Free Book: December 23

Welcome to the holiday edition of Fish for a Free Book! Hope everyone enjoys their holidays and is able to take advantage of some down time by picking up a good book!

If you are hosting a children's book giveaway, or if you found a giveaway somewhere on the net that you just have to share, I'd love to have you share your links with us here on our weekly giveaway linky so that we can all stop by and enter.

If you're looking for more children's book giveaways, be sure to visit
Brimful Curiosities' Full to the Brim,
Winning Readings (listings of adult and children's book giveaways),
and Got Great Giveaways? (linky of adult and children's book giveaways at I Am a Reader, Not a Writer)

Please post your links however you wish. Some like to include their blog name, some just want to leave the prize and the ending date. Post it whatever way you feel like, but make sure that the prize listing and the date the giveaway ends is listed. And make sure you post a link directly to your giveaway - not just to your main blog page.

Here's an example:
Your name: Lori Calabrese Writes--Two YA Novels--6/24
Your URL: http://loricalabrese.blogspot.com/2011/06/welcome-to-midsummers-eve-giveaway-hop.html

Now it's your turn. Leave your links here...
(If you're reading this in a reader, please click through to the original post)

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Looking for that last minute gift?

The countdown is on! Only 3 shopping days left until Christmas. If you're looking for that last minute gift, why not consider an e-book--especially one that will explain everything your young readers want to know about those mischievous elves and the man with the white beard? This month Sourcebooks released an enhanced e-book of the picture book, MRS. CLAUS EXPLAINS IT ALL, complete with real kids asking questions.  It has risen to #2 in NOOK Picture Books at Barnes & Noble and it's currently on sale for $1.99! 

Be sure to read my review of MRS. CLAUS EXPLAINS IT ALL, then head over to the NOOK book store or Apple's iBookstore to get your e-book, complete with amazing
illustrations by David Wenzel, bestselling illustrator of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.Not only do you get the full original text, but you also get engaging audio that elevates the reader experience for both parent and child. Now don't you want to find out all of Santa's secrets?

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

An endearing tale of friendship

Family and friends are the focus of the holidays and if you're looking for a children's book that reminds us how important our friends are, then check out JANE & MIZMOW by Matthew S. Armstrong.

Jane's best friend is Mizmow, a monster. Mizmow's best friend is Jane. It can be hard being best friends with a monster, but the two are inseparable and have lots of fun together. That is until one day, they fight over a warm cap fresh from the dryer and it rips. They're not best friends anymore. However, both Jane and Mizmow realize that things just aren't the same, and there's nobody to share things with. So how exactly can you get your best friend back?

The illustrations help tell the story in this endearing tale of friendship and kids will love watching the story play out in both the text and illustrations. Not only is Mizmow the monster absolutely adorable, I can see young readers wanting a stuffed animal of this little guy. The text is simple enough for emerging readers, but the message is powerful enough for readers of all ages. Can't wait to see another picture book by debut author/ illustrator Matthew S. Armstrong as his art is amazing!

Additional Information:
Reading level: Ages 3 and up
Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: HarperCollins (October 11, 2011)
ISBN-10: 0061177199
ISBN-13: 978-0061177194
Source of review copy: Publisher
Disclosure: Some of the books I review are received from publishers , PR agencies, and authors, but it does not sway my opinion of the book.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Fish for a Free Book: December 16


Welcome to Fish for a Free Book!

If you are hosting a children's book giveaway, or if you found a giveaway somewhere on the net that you just have to share, I'd love to have you share your links with us here on our weekly giveaway linky so that we can all stop by and enter.

If you're looking for more children's book giveaways, be sure to visit
Brimful Curiosities' Full to the Brim,
Winning Readings (listings of adult and children's book giveaways),
and Got Great Giveaways? (linky of adult and children's book giveaways at I Am a Reader, Not a Writer)

Please post your links however you wish. Some like to include their blog name, some just want to leave the prize and the ending date. Post it whatever way you feel like, but make sure that the prize listing and the date the giveaway ends is listed. And make sure you post a link directly to your giveaway - not just to your main blog page.

Here's an example:
Your name: Lori Calabrese Writes--Two YA Novels--6/24
Your URL: http://loricalabrese.blogspot.com/2011/06/welcome-to-midsummers-eve-giveaway-hop.html

Now it's your turn. Leave your links here...
(If you're reading this in a reader, please click through to the original post)

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Janet Halfmann's “Star of the Sea” Wins National Award from Science Teachers

I recently reviewed Star of the Sea: A Day in the Life of a Starfish, by Janet Halfmann and I'm excited to announce that the book has been named a 2012 Outstanding Science Trade Book for Students K-12.

The award is given by The National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), in collaboration with the Children’s Book Council.

In its review NSTA said: “The book’s narration is full of descriptive phrases that paint a minds-eye picture of the daily life of a starfish in its natural environment. For example, “Beneath the crashing waves, another kind of star clings to the rocks with hundreds of sticky tube feet." The words set the stage for the visual imagery of the life of a starfish. The illustrations show the large view of a starfish as well as close-up images of its tube feet. The blend of words and art provides young readers with accurate scientific information and will inspire wonder in their minds.”

“Star of the Sea” is published by Henry Holt/Christy Ottaviano Books, for children ages 5-9. The illustrations are collage art by Joan Paley. The book is also a School Library Guild Selection.

Halfmann is the award-winning author of more than 30 children’s books, including “Good Night, Little Sea Otter,” “Fur and Feathers,” “Little Skink’s Tail,” and “Seven Miles to Freedom: The Robert Smalls Story.” She grew up on a farm in Michigan and now lives in South Milwaukee, WI.

A big congraulations to Janet and be sure to check out some of the other amazing titles that won the award.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Unwrap an app for the holidays with the Fancy Nancy Dress Up app

HarperCollins Children’s Books recently announced that the Fancy Nancy Dress Up – the first interactive app based on the beloved and bestselling children’s book – is available on the App Store for iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch.

'Tis the season for apps, so it's no surprise to see Fancy Nancy make her digital game debut. With over 20 million books in print, Fancy Nancy has captured the hearts of young readers, which is why I'm sure this app will be a hit with Fancy Nancy fans.

Fancy Nancy Dress Up has hundreds of possible outfits, and fun and fancy backgrounds and stickers to choose from. Not only will Fancy Nancy fans love dressing up Nancy, they can create original pictures for an all-new Fancy Nancy storybook, save and share their fantastique creations, and insert Fancy Nancy into their very own photos

Other new apps out just in time for the holidays include Biscuit Gives a Gift and The Berenstain Bears Trim the Tree. Whether you are joining the Berenstain Bears as they decorate their Christmas tree or playing along as Biscuit finds the perfect gift for everyone he loves, you can now celebrate the holidays with your favorite characters in a fun and interactive way.

If you're looking for even more app ideas, be sure to check out my article at Education.com, Top 10 Holiday Apps for Kids.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Deadly Cool is just that- COOL!

The first sentence of Deadly Cool by Gemma Halliday will have you diving into this novel, wanting more.

Hartley Grace Featherstone is having a very bad day. First she finds out that her boyfriend is cheating on her with the president of the Herbert Hoover High School Chastity Club. Then he's pegged as the #1 suspect in a murder. And if that weren't enough, now he's depending on Hartley to clear his name. Seriously? Not cool.

But as much as Hartley wouldn't mind seeing him squirm, she knows he's innocent, and she's the only one who can help him. Along with her best friend, Sam, and the school's resident Bad Boy, Chase, Hartley starts investigating on her own. But as the dead bodies begin to pile up, the mystery deepens, the suspects multiply, and Hartley begins to fear that she may be the killer's next victim.

I fell in love with Hartley as she's punchy, to the point and laugh out loud. We hear a lot about voice when it comes to novels--specifically how hard it is to nail that teen voice in a young adult novel, but Halliday has it mastered. Add in a little murder mystery and you have the perfect read for a long weekend.

Additional Information:
Reading level: Ages 13 and up
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: HarperTeen (October 11, 2011)
ISBN-10: 0062003313
ISBN-13: 978-0062003317
Source of review copy: Publisher
Disclosure: Some of the books I review are received from publishers , PR agencies, and authors, but it does not sway my opinion of the book.

Monday, December 12, 2011

10 Best Holiday Apps for Kids

If you're looking to update your tablet, smartphone, or MP3 with some really cool holiday apps for kids, check out my latest article for Education.com, 10 Best Holiday Apps for Kids.

I loved writing this article because it gave me the chance to try out some apps I didn't even know were out there and we all know there are many to choose from. There's definitely an app for everything!

My new favorite? Definitely Grinchmas! Who doesn't love the Grinch?

Friday, December 9, 2011

Fish for a free book: December 9


Welcome to Fish for a Free Book!

If you are hosting a children's book giveaway, or if you found a giveaway somewhere on the net that you just have to share, I'd love to have you share your links with us here on our weekly giveaway linky so that we can all stop by and enter.

If you're looking for more children's book giveaways, be sure to visit
Brimful Curiosities' Full to the Brim,
Winning Readings (listings of adult and children's book giveaways),
and Got Great Giveaways? (linky of adult and children's book giveaways at I Am a Reader, Not a Writer)

Please post your links however you wish. Some like to include their blog name, some just want to leave the prize and the ending date. Post it whatever way you feel like, but make sure that the prize listing and the date the giveaway ends is listed. And make sure you post a link directly to your giveaway - not just to your main blog page.

Here's an example:
Your name: Lori Calabrese Writes--Two YA Novels--6/24
Your URL: http://loricalabrese.blogspot.com/2011/06/welcome-to-midsummers-eve-giveaway-hop.html

Now it's your turn. Leave your links here...
(If you're reading this in a reader, please click through to the original post)

Thursday, December 8, 2011

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever

A classic Christmas tale is THE BEST CHRISTMAS PAGEANT EVER, first published in 1972 by Barbara Robinson. Not only was it made into a TV movie, but it is produced annually as a play in theaters, schools and churches all over the world.

Now, Robinson is introducing us to the latest picture book version of THE BEST CHRISTMAS PAGEANT EVER, illustrated by Laura Cornell.

We're introduced to the Herdmans, who just happen to be the worst kids in the history of the world. They lie, steal and play with matches and everyone stays away from them. However, one day they show up in Sunday school. Not only do they steal all the money out of the collection plate, but they draw mustaches on everybody in the Bible and take over the annual Christmas pageant (acting out the story of Mary, Joseph, and Baby Jesus). Everybody knows the story, except the Herdmans. In fact, everyone's convinced this is going to be the worst pageant ever, but when the pageant takes place and every wrong thing the Herdmans do seems right and natural, it might possibly be the best Christmas pageant ever.

The thought of six very unruly children teaching a whole church about the true meaning of the birth of Christ is what makes this a wonderful Christmas picture book to share with children and teach them the true meaning of Christmas. Cornell has updated the story with lively and vibrant illustrations, but the powerful message remains the same. A wonderful addition to your Christmas collection.

Additional Information:
Reading level: Ages 4 and up
Hardcover: 40 pages
Publisher: HarperCollins (September 27, 2011)
ISBN-10: 0060890746
ISBN-13: 978-0060890742
Source of review copy: Publisher
Disclosure: Some of the books I review are received from publishers , PR agencies, and authors, but it does not sway my opinion of the book.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

7 Things to Do When a Teacher Calls Home

Remember when you were a kid and your teacher threatened to call your mom? You couldn’t imagine anything else more terrifying and you probably begged and pleaded, “Please, please don’t call my mom. Anything but that.” Fast-forward a few years and now your son’s teacher is calling home and you're on the receiving end. You’re probably begging and pleading, “Please, please don’t call me. Anything but this.”

When a teacher calls home, it can be a scary experience for a child—and even scarier for a parent. Check out my recent article that I wrote for Education.com, 7 Things to Do When a Teacher Calls Home. Hopefully, if you ever do get that dreaded phone call, you'll be a little more prepared and know just what to do.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Carrier of the Mark hits the mark

Carrier of the Mark was one of the buzz books at Book Expo America this year and after hearing the story of how Leigh Fallon wrote the book, posted it to Inkpop (a website for budding writers of teen fiction) and within weeks, the manuscript hit the coveted top-five spot, I had to get my hands on a copy.

Let me just say, I'm glad I did. I mean, check out the cover. That's just one of the coolest covers I've seen in a long time.

Megan Rosenberg comes off as your typical teenager, but how typical can she be when she's transplanted from Boston to Ireland? Fortunately, after growing up in America, she's surprised to find herself feeling at home in her new school. She connects with a group of friends, and she is instantly drawn to darkly handsome Adam DeRÍs. However, as their relationship blossoms, Megan discovers a secret of the DeRIs family, bu how exactly does Megan fit in?

If you love mythology, you'll fall in love with the characters in this book. Fallon has captured the magic of Ireland, and dives into Celtic legend as we discover the amazing powers of Megan and Adam. There's so much action and intrigue in this novel, you'll find yourself ripping through it in no time, and biting your nails for the next installment.

Additional Information:
Reading level: Ages 13 and up
Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: HarperTeen; 1 edition (October 4, 2011)
ISBN-10: 0062027875
ISBN-13: 978-0062027870
Source of review copy: Publisher
Disclosure: Some of the books I review are received from publishers , PR agencies, and authors, but it does not sway my opinion of the book.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Fish for a Free Book: December 2

Welcome to Fish for a free book!

If you are hosting a children's book giveaway, or if you found a giveaway somewhere on the net that you just have to share, I'd love to have you share your links with us here on our weekly giveaway linky so that we can all stop by and enter.

If you're looking for more children's book giveaways, be sure to visit
Brimful Curiosities' Full to the Brim,
Winning Readings (listings of adult and children's book giveaways),
and Got Great Giveaways? (linky of adult and children's book giveaways at I Am a Reader, Not a Writer)

Please post your links however you wish. Some like to include their blog name, some just want to leave the prize and the ending date. Post it whatever way you feel like, but make sure that the prize listing and the date the giveaway ends is listed. And make sure you post a link directly to your giveaway - not just to your main blog page.

Here's an example:
Your name: Lori Calabrese Writes--Two YA Novels--6/24
Your URL: http://loricalabrese.blogspot.com/2011/06/welcome-to-midsummers-eve-giveaway-hop.html

Now it's your turn. Leave your links here...
(If you're reading this in a reader, please click through to the original post)

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Co-Authors & Dads Teach Kids Don't Be Afraid of Failure

I recently reviewed  THE GIRL WHO NEVER MADE MISTAKES by Mark Pett and Gary Rubenstein. I fell in love with this book and the illustrations and needed to find out more of how these co-authors and dads are teaching kids to not be afraid of failure...

What was the inspiration for Beatrice Bottomwell?
As a professional cartoonist (and former teacher), I’m often asked to visit classrooms to teach kids about cartooning. Invariably, there are numerous children who either won’t participate because they “can’t draw” or get frustrated that they can’t draw perfectly the first time.

This led to a thought experiment. What if there was a child who never made mistakes? What would her life be like? Enter Beatrice Bottomwell, celebrated in her town for having never made a mistake in as long as anyone can remember. In so many ways, her life is wonderful. She wins spelling bees. She gets perfect grades. She never spills anything, mismatches clothing, or colors outside the lines. What could be terrible about that?

The trouble, Beatrice increasingly discovers, is that she’s trapped in a box. Beatrice can’t try anything she doesn’t already know she’s good at. When her friends ask her to join them ice skating, she won’t because she might fail. She’s so attached to being The Girl Who Never Makes Mistakes that her range of activities becomes narrower and narrower.

This is the problem with the kind of perfectionism that virtually all of us experience. How many adults do you know who refuse to dance or sing or draw because that’s just not something they’re good at? Our children watch us and begin to do the very same thing.

Mark, How different was it creating a children's book than writing your nationally syndicated comic strip?

I've discovered that producing a daily syndicated comic strip was wonderful preparation for writing and illustrating a children's picture book. The principles are very much the same. In comic strips, the cartoonist uses art and words in tandem to guide the reader through the story and control timing.

My comic strip also did wonders to develop my work ethic. When you have to deliver a comic strip every single day (including a large full-color Sunday strip once per week), you learn to be creative on demand. I can't say I miss the brutal deadlines, but the newspaper comic strip is a wonderful medium that offers an intimate relationship between the creator and the reader. In creating a children's book, I've enjoyed a much slower pace, which has allowed me to edit more thoroughly and work in watercolors to produce the illustrations. I have to say, though, that I've missed the instant gratification that publishing in newspapers gave me. It's taken two years to see this book to print!

Gary, How did your teaching experience aid in writing The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes?
As a math teacher I've found that many students are intimidated by their perceived rigidity of the subject. The only way I'm able to get a good amount of participation is to tell the students, early on, that nobody will make more mistakes than me in front of the class this semester. Also, I like to sometimes ask questions that encourage the students to let go and just guess. Like "How likely is it that two people in this class have the same birthday?" I don't expect them to calculate it out -- it's too difficult. But if I can get them to take an educated guess and feel comfortable making it publicly, then I've done a good job at getting them to embrace the ideas we try to promote in the book.

Why do you think students are so concerned about making mistakes?
Students see many of the questions that are posed in school as either right or wrong, especially in math. Kids don't want to get the answer wrong in front of everyone since they feel that everyone else knows the correct answer, even when they don't. I've found that when it comes to the test, the kids who participated the most, even if they got answers wrong in that participation, do best on the unit test. That's why I really try to encourage kids to answer questions and try to be understanding when they get things wrong and not make them feel bad about it.

How did the collaboration process work and what were some of the challenges?
Mark and I have known each other for twelve years. We met at a Teach For America reunion in 1999 and would send one another projects we were working on, individually, to see what the other thought of it. Three years ago we both had daughters born and as we each read picture books to them, we started talking about working together on one.

Since he lived in Mississippi at the time and I was in New York City, we would Skype once a week brainstorming ideas for the book. We settled on a concept that Mark had about what it would be like to never make a mistake. I wrote the first draft and then we edited and rewrote for about four months. Mark drew up some pencil sketches for the artwork and we sent out the rough draft to agents until Kerry Sparks from Levine-Greenberg offered to represent us. The rest, as they say, is history.

Since Mark and I were very used to working on our own projects -- me on my other books and him on his syndicated comic strips -- it was difficult, at times, coming to agreement about how the story should go. Then, when you add in an editor, things get even more complicated. I think, though, that the collaboration process really enabled every possible kink to be worked out in the text and when I look at the final product I see some things that I know were my invention, some that I know were Mark's, but most of it I see as just what 'we' did together through the collaboration process.

-----
A big thanks to both Gary and Mark for taking the time to tell us more about the inspiration and collaboration process behind THE GIRL WHO NEVER MADE MISTAKES. Check out the book at Sourcebooks.com.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Beautiful Dead comes to a climactic end

The Beautiful Dead series by Eden Maguire quickly became one of my faves as I dived into the very first book: Beautiful Dead: Jonas on a train ride home from the NY SCBWI winter conference a few years ago.As each book was released, I must say I was never disappointed and couldn't wait to get my hands on the next installment.

I hate to see the series end, but I recently finished the last book in the series, Beautiful Dead: Phoenix. In this fourth and final installment, we know how Darina has helped previous members of the Beautiful Dead bring about justice for their deaths, but now the heat is on as Darina has to help her 'undead' boyfriend, Phoenix. Can Darina keep it together, knowing that her time with Phoenix is running out?

I couldn't put this book down and was pleasantly surprised with some of the surprising plot twists Maguire weaved in. Since book one, I've loved the character Darina as she's strong-willed, independent, and very captivating and Darina doesn't let you down in this one either.

If you're in the market for a clever, and intriguing series, look no further. The Beautiful Dead will fill your appetite for the dark side, romance, supernatural, drama, action, and more.

Additional Information:
Reading level: Ages 13 and up
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire (October 1, 2011)
ISBN-10: 1402239475
ISBN-13: 978-1402239472
Source of review copy: Publicist
Disclosure: Some of the books I review are received from publishers , PR agencies, and authors, but it does not sway my opinion of the book.

Monday, November 28, 2011

The ultimate question and answer book

Children are inquisitive and if you're a parent, you're probably bombarded with questions daily like...

-Why do I have to brush my teeth?
-Why are some eggs brown and some white?
-Why do onions make you cry?
-Why is the sky blue?

Chances are you're usually explaining away, but if you need to come up for air or maybe just don't know why worms come out when it's wet (no shame in that), it's time to pick up a copy of WHY: THE BEST EVER QUESTION AND ANSWER BOOK ABOUT NATURE, SCIENCE, AND THE WORLD AROUND YOU by Catherine Ripley.

My kids and I can't get enough of this book. There are so many fun questions and they're broken up into sections: Bathtime, Supermarket, Nighttime, Outdoor, Kitchen, and Farm Animal. And what makes this book resonate with young readers is the fact that the questions were submitted by real children. The 10th Anniversary Edition not only offers all of the fun facts you're looking for, but it offers fun illustrations that will have your young readers picking this one up time and time again.

Additional Information:
Reading level: Ages 3 and up
Hardcover: 192 pages
Publisher: Owlkids Books; Tenth Anniversary Edition edition (November 1, 2010)
ISBN-10: 1926818008
ISBN-13: 978-1926818009
Source of review copy: Publisher
Disclosure: Some of the books I review are received from publishers , PR agencies, and authors, but it does not sway my opinion of the book.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Fish for a Free Book: November 25

Welcome to the Thanksgiving edition of fish for a free book!

If you are hosting a children's book giveaway, or if you found a giveaway somewhere on the net that you just have to share, I'd love to have you share your links with us here on our weekly giveaway linky so that we can all stop by and enter.

If you're looking for more children's book giveaways, be sure to visit
Brimful Curiosities' Full to the Brim,
Winning Readings (listings of adult and children's book giveaways),
and Got Great Giveaways? (linky of adult and children's book giveaways at I Am a Reader, Not a Writer)

Please post your links however you wish. Some like to include their blog name, some just want to leave the prize and the ending date. Post it whatever way you feel like, but make sure that the prize listing and the date the giveaway ends is listed. And make sure you post a link directly to your giveaway - not just to your main blog page.

Here's an example:
Your name: Lori Calabrese Writes--Two YA Novels--6/24
Your URL: http://loricalabrese.blogspot.com/2011/06/welcome-to-midsummers-eve-giveaway-hop.html

Now it's your turn. Leave your links here...
(If you're reading this in a reader, please click through to the original post)

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Taking dress-up to the next level

I was recently reading the children's book, Birdie's Big-Girl Shoes by Sujean RimDo. In the book, Birdie can’t wait to dress-up like her mom…wearing jewelry, perfume and big-girl shoes. It immediately made me think of my niece. She loves to dress-up and play pretend, so I'm always on the lookout for everything from princess dresses to fairy wings to Dorothy's red ruby shoes. As the mom of two boys, I'm usually surrounded by Transformers costumes, werewolves, and skeletons, so the thought of feather boas floating around the house is as alien to me as E.T.. However, it made me stop and wonder, why do girls like to dress-up? Underneath all of those sequins and sparkles, there's something intriguing to a little girl about walking in an adult's shoes. They're preparing themselves for the road ahead and role-play allows girls to strengthen many skills they'll need as an adult. So as I was racking my brain for another Christmas present that would be a hit this year, it hit me. What if I didn't buy the usual frilly, lacy princess dress, but instead opted for some gear that would really get her creative juices flowing?

I discovered this fantastic website that offers scrubs not only for men and women, but also kids...http://www.blueskyscrubs.com/categories/Scrubs/Scrubs-for-Women/Original-Scrubs/. The scrubs that Blue Sky offers resembles the same ones you'd find a doctor or nurse wearing in a hospital, which makes them a perfect gift for dress-up play and more. And to top it off, they even offer scrubs for babies! I wish I knew a doctor or nurse who was having a baby because I can see these as the perfect baby shower gift.

Even though we don't have any doctors or nurses in the family, I know I stumbled upon a great Christmas gift as my niece will love the nurse scrubs uniform. Yeah, there might not be any sequins or high-heel shoes that she can stumble around the house in, but the next time she wants to put herself into an adult's shoes, she won't have to just grab that toy doctor kit, filled with molded plastic toys that only let her pretend to play doctor. She can actually wear the real thing and aim to be the next Elizabeth Blackwell...stat!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
Here's to gettin' your turkey on...

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Teaching children about OCD

OCD is a difficult thing to explain to children, but as I've always said, there really is a children's book for everything and if you're looking for a way to explain OCD to your child, STUCK by Rhonda C. Martin will do just the trick.

Narrated by Cinnamon, a little girl who's different in a big way, we learn about all the different ways she gets stuck in certain routines and can't stop until she gets them exactly right. For example, Cinnamon has a certain routine when Mom or Dad leave the house, she often washes her hands over and over again, she needs to have her toys in neat lines, and the trash can is her least favorite part of the house. And even though young readers will learn that OCD can make someone feel like something bad might happen, they'll also learn that Cinnamon gets stuck on many good things.

This book sends the powerful message home that OCD is not a child's fault and there's nothing wrong with a child who has OCD. In fact, most of the time, they're just like other kids and whatever happens, their friends and family love them just the same. This is a wonderful book for kids with OCD, kids who would like to understand more about OCD, and for parents to help initiate discussion with their own children about OCD. 

For more information and resources, please visit Stuck's official website.

Additional Information:
Hardcover: 48 pages
Publisher: Jabberwocky Books (September 1, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1935204335
ISBN-13: 978-1935204336
Source of review copy: Author
Disclosure: Some of the books I review are received from publishers , PR agencies, and authors, but it does not sway my opinion of the book.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Teach your kids what it means to go green

Go Green! You hear that phrase everywhere these days. We all know that to “go green” means to strive for sustainability and protection of the environment. But how do you explain that to a five year old? Well, author Jill Dunn attempts to do just that in her book, I WANT TO GO GREEN, BUT WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?

In the book, a little girl gets to the bottom of just what it means to go green...

Is "Green" a playground where I can play?
Is it a building or somewhere to stay?

Or is it just the color of peas?
Will somebody tell me?
I'm begging you, please!


The little girl begs and pleads and learns that to go green is how we should treat our Earth. Not only is it a way of life that protects the Earth and people, it also protects the animals and more. Kids will enjoy the rhyming story as they learn about everything from energy to conservation to renewable resources and they'll be amazed at all the ways they can go green--just by turning off the TV, recycling their juice bottle, and walking to school instead of taking the car.

Teaching children how to go green shouldn't be difficult and Dunn has laid everything out for your young readers to do the right thing. So the next time someone tells them to go green, they'll know exactly what that means!

Additional Information:
Paperback: 42 pages
Publisher: AuthorMike Ink (April 11, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0984580123
ISBN-13: 978-0984580125
Source of review copy: Publisher
Disclosure: Some of the books I review are received from publishers , PR agencies, and authors, but it does not sway my opinion of the book.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Fish for a Free Book: November 18

It's time to fish for a free book!

If you are hosting a children's book giveaway, or if you found a giveaway somewhere on the net that you just have to share, I'd love to have you share your links with us here on our weekly giveaway linky so that we can all stop by and enter.

If you're looking for more children's book giveaways, be sure to visit
Brimful Curiosities' Full to the Brim,
Winning Readings (listings of adult and children's book giveaways),
and Got Great Giveaways? (linky of adult and children's book giveaways at I Am a Reader, Not a Writer)

Please post your links however you wish. Some like to include their blog name, some just want to leave the prize and the ending date. Post it whatever way you feel like, but make sure that the prize listing and the date the giveaway ends is listed. And make sure you post a link directly to your giveaway - not just to your main blog page.

Here's an example:
Your name: Lori Calabrese Writes--Two YA Novels--6/24
Your URL: http://loricalabrese.blogspot.com/2011/06/welcome-to-midsummers-eve-giveaway-hop.html

Now it's your turn. Leave your links here...
(If you're reading this in a reader, please click through to the original post)

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Check out these ridiculous parenting products

Parenting Magazine recently posted the most ridiculous parenting products.

Parenting says, "With kids comes stuff -- but this silly and unnecessary kid gear is a total waste of your money."

If you're a parent, I'm sure your house is flooded with unnecessary kid gear and with the holidays around the corner, you're probably wondering where your going to put all that new unnecessary stuff. I must admit, the thought has crossed my mind once or twice.

That being said, hop over to Parenting and check out their list. The thing that grabbed my attention? A placenta teddy bear!

Okay--that's just gross!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Fish for a Free Book: November 11

It's time to fish for a free book!

If you are hosting a children's book giveaway, or if you found a giveaway somewhere on the net that you just have to share, I'd love to have you share your links with us here on our weekly giveaway linky so that we can all stop by and enter.

If you're looking for more children's book giveaways, be sure to visit
Brimful Curiosities' Full to the Brim,
Winning Readings (listings of adult and children's book giveaways),
and Got Great Giveaways? (linky of adult and children's book giveaways at I Am a Reader, Not a Writer)

Please post your links however you wish. Some like to include their blog name, some just want to leave the prize and the ending date. Post it whatever way you feel like, but make sure that the prize listing and the date the giveaway ends is listed. And make sure you post a link directly to your giveaway - not just to your main blog page.

Here's an example:
Your name: Lori Calabrese Writes--Two YA Novels--6/24
Your URL: http://loricalabrese.blogspot.com/2011/06/welcome-to-midsummers-eve-giveaway-hop.html

Now it's your turn. Leave your links here...
(If you're reading this in a reader, please click through to the original post)

Fish For a Free Book Participants
1. Mymcbooks

Powered by... Mister Linky's Magical Widgets.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Celebrate Picture Book Month

Did you guys know that November has officially been declared picture book month? With the digital age upon us and with many declaring the death of the picture book, some ingenious authors came up with the idea to give the picture book some well deserved love and rightfully so. As a result, every day in November, there will be a new post at their official website from a picture book champion explaining why he/she thinks picture books are important. Be sure to check out the site as they have tons of activities, curriculum guides and more!

As you know, picture books are close to my heart and I think they play a huge role in a child's development. But most of all, picture books are just plain fun! In fact, I'm always amazed at where picture book authors get their ideas from. Most writers write about what their passionate about or things they know and I don't know about you, but recalling memories from 1st grade just does not come easy for me. So where do children's authors get their ideas from exactly?

One author has a fabulous story and in honor of picture book month, I had to share it here. That story is of Laura Murray, author of THE GINGERBREAD MAN LOOSE IN THE SCHOOL. According to her website, Murray is not only a children's author, but also a teacher and mom of three mischief makers! As a teacher, one of her favorite curriculum units was 'The Gingerbread Man' unit. As part of her lesson at the beginning of each school year, a freshly baked gingerbread man managed to escape from her class. It was up to the kids to hang missing posters, search the halls, discover crumbs and candies, and do whatever they could to hunt down this smart cookie. Sounds like fun, doesn't it? Well as a result, Murray came up with the idea for her book, THE GINGERBREAD MAN LOOSE IN THE SCHOOL. It's a twist on the classic tale, told by the Gingerbread Man himself and the book has quickly become a staple for teachers across the country.

That's just one story of how one author got a fabulous idea and turned it into a success. There are so many more and so many reasons to love picture books. To learn more about Laura Murray, please visit her official website and don't forget to give some love to picture books.Visit the Picture Book Month website and learn more about why picture books are important.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Welcoming Ashton

Thanks for the post, Arthur Lawrence

Until this fall, I’ve never really watched Two and a Half Men. Charlie Sheen was such a train wreck in real life I couldn’t bring myself to tune in while watching my direct tv San Marcos. But after all the hype about his being fired and Ashton Kutcher being hired, I couldn’t help tuning in. I wanted to see what all the drama was about. Boy was I not disappointed! I know many long time fans aren’t very excited about the change but I really like the way they made the transition. The funeral was hilarious and a fitting tribute to a character gone rogue. Ashton’s introduction was a blast. He isn’t the best actor but the character he plays doesn’t seem to have much personality so it works! Jon Cryer is always great and continues to play the perfect straight man against Kutcher’s slightly spacy and clueless billionaire. And Angus Jones never disappoints. This show is one of very few examples where the cute kid in the punchlines has been able to grow up and remain relevant. Have you noticed they haven’t had to introduce another younger “cousin” like on so many other sitcoms?

Monday, November 7, 2011

An app that simplifies the interview process

If you're a freelance writer, you know the importance of getting interviews. Interviews help gather information, give you an expert source to quote, and really solidify your article and/ or book.

Let's admit it though--if it's a lengthy interview, organization can get a little hairy. There are many tools out there to use, but one that came to my attention recently is the MyInterview App.

This app looks amazing as it will help you create, conduct and manage your interviews. And one thing about doing interviews is the amount of paperwork that usually comes along with it. The MyInterview App helps you go green and will help free you of all that clutter.

Some of the features include templates that will get you started with real questions, and the ability to record the audio from an interview with the tap of a button, take notes during an interview, time your interview, and share data easily by emailing reports right from the app.

Whether you're just getting started as a freelance writer or you're a full-fledged nonfiction author, MyInterview will definitely help you streamline the interview process and help get you organized. Something every writer needs to be!

Learn more at http://myinterviewapp.com/

Friday, November 4, 2011

Can Prepaid Debit Cards Help You Maintain Your Budget?

Maintaining a budget is a lot like yo-yo dieting. Think about it--when dieting, a weight cycle can range from small weight losses and big gains. Your budget can also be affected this way when you don't have a plan. One month, you might see big gains, but another month, you suffer huge losses. With the U.S. economy continuing to be sluggish, moms probably find themselves walking out of a grocery store shocked at their receipt and even more shocked when they realize there's not much in their grocery bags. With that said, what is the best way to maintain a budget?

I don't know about you, but I've tried so many ways to maintain a budget from taking out a set amount of money for the month to not taking any money out at all and only relying on credit cards. Somehow, it never seems to work. Now, with banks charging high fees for debit card transactions, U.S. banks are pushing prepaid debit cards. But is it the right thing to maintain your budget? Prepaid debit cards do offer some advantages:

  • You can only spend what is on your card, so there are no costly overdraft or interest fees.
  • It’s an easy-to-use and convenient alternative to credit cards and traditional banking–without all of the worry of going into debt or overdrawing your account.
  • There are no hidden fees or interest charges.
  • You can get instant access to your balance, deposit, and recent transaction information online. Most prepaid cards even allow you to track your transactions on your mobile phone. This is useful to know where and how much you’re spending.
  • Carrying a prepaid debit card is much safer than carrying cash. If it's lost or stolen, the best prepaid debit card companies will protect you against unauthorized purchases.
  • You can also shop online without giving out your credit card information.
If you think a prepaid debit card is for you, you can buy them online or find them in major retailers, but be sure to study the card's policies. Some charge a small monthly fee, fees to reload the card, fees to withdraw money from an ATM, and fees to speak to a customer service representative. However, preloaded cards that offer the convenience of plastic without the risk of taking on further debt can be a great deal and the popularity of prepaid debit cards continues to rise. According to the U.S. Treasury, even the IRS has started a campaign to issue refunds to those who do not have a bank account in the form of a prepaid debit card.

With the holidays around the corner, I see prepaid debit cards as a great alternative for maintaining your budget. Much like that yo-yo diet you've tried time and time again, you've probably realized that if you want to lose weight, you have to do it the right way. Well, it's the same for your budget. If you want to save money, you have to do it the right way and perhaps a prepaid debit card is the way for you.

Fish for a Free Book: November 4

It's time to fish for a free book!

If you are hosting a children's book giveaway, or if you found a giveaway somewhere on the net that you just have to share, I'd love to have you share your links with us here on our weekly giveaway linky so that we can all stop by and enter.

If you're looking for more children's book giveaways, be sure to visit
Brimful Curiosities' Full to the Brim,
Winning Readings (listings of adult and children's book giveaways),
and Got Great Giveaways? (linky of adult and children's book giveaways at I Am a Reader, Not a Writer)

Please post your links however you wish. Some like to include their blog name, some just want to leave the prize and the ending date. Post it whatever way you feel like, but make sure that the prize listing and the date the giveaway ends is listed. And make sure you post a link directly to your giveaway - not just to your main blog page.

Here's an example:
Your name: Lori Calabrese Writes--Two YA Novels--6/24
Your URL: http://loricalabrese.blogspot.com/2011/06/welcome-to-midsummers-eve-giveaway-hop.html

Now it's your turn. Leave your links here...
(If you're reading this in a reader, please click through to the original post)

Fish For a Free Book Participants
1. Bluerose's Heart-YA E-book(10 copies!)- 11/11
2. 2 Signed Fur and Feathers picture books—ends 11/5, US
3. Sharing Some Mail Giddiness: The Secret Life of Bees --US, 11/7
4. iPad 2, 30 Kids' Books & $50 GC 11/23

Powered by... Mister Linky's Magical Widgets.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

How to convince your kids to not turn the other into a frog

So one of your sons wants to turn his brother into a frog? We've all been there. I remember many times I would have loved to have changed my brother into a frog, but it just never happened. No matter how much you try to convince your son that it's just not possible, you might want to check out MY BROTHER THE FROG by Kevin McNamee.

In this humorous picture book, a boy wants to change his brother into a frog, but he learns a few things in the process. Things like... his brother will get mad, his parents will get mad, he'll be really good at sports, and more. And when he tries to change him back, it may not be that easy. Now his brother's a duck who hogs the bathtub then he's a chicken who pecks at his toes when he's asleep. There are so many scenarios that he just never thought of and he finally realizes that maybe his brother isn't so bad just the way he is.

MY BROTHER THE FROG is a humorous read that dives into a little sibling rivalry. As I said before, we've all probably imagined turning our brother or sister into a frog, but MY BROTHER THE FROG takes it one step further and really examines what would happen if it actually came to fruition. Kids will get a kick out of the illustrations and parents will enjoy the hidden message that a sibling can actually be your best friend. (well, sometimes)

Additional Information:
Paperback: 24 pages
Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc (June 27, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1616331593
ISBN-13: 978-1616331597
Source of review copy: Author
Disclosure: Some of the books I review are received from publishers , PR agencies, and authors, but it does not sway my opinion of the book.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Fish for a Free Book: October 28

It's time to fish for a free book!

If you are hosting a children's book giveaway, or if you found a giveaway somewhere on the net that you just have to share, I'd love to have you share your links with us here on our weekly giveaway linky so that we can all stop by and enter.

If you're looking for more children's book giveaways, be sure to visit
Brimful Curiosities' Full to the Brim,
Winning Readings (listings of adult and children's book giveaways),
and Got Great Giveaways? (linky of adult and children's book giveaways at I Am a Reader, Not a Writer)

Please post your links however you wish. Some like to include their blog name, some just want to leave the prize and the ending date. Post it whatever way you feel like, but make sure that the prize listing and the date the giveaway ends is listed. And make sure you post a link directly to your giveaway - not just to your main blog page.

Here's an example:
Your name: Lori Calabrese Writes--Two YA Novels--6/24
Your URL: http://loricalabrese.blogspot.com/2011/06/welcome-to-midsummers-eve-giveaway-hop.html

Now it's your turn. Leave your links here...
(If you're reading this in a reader, please click through to the original post)

Fish For a Free Book Participants
1. 2 Signed Fur and Feathers picture books—ends 11/5

Powered by... Mister Linky's Magical Widgets.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Throw a Halloween Party with Boo, Bat and Pumpkin

Halloween is on Monday (cue the creepy Scooby Doo music), which means it's time to throw a party. Well, Boo, Bat and Pumpkin are in the latest Halloween children's book, BOO, BAT and PUMPKIN THROW A PARTY.

This year, Boo and his friends want to throw a Halloween party at his haunted house. Only problem is, Boo and his friends aren't quite the popular kids in school.  Boo hopes the popular kids will come and everyone will have a great time, so the popular kids will like them. However, as the cobwebs are hung, and the eyeballs are stewed, will the party go off without a hitch?

Ashley Lucas has written a fun Halloween story with a universal message of making new friends, acceptance and the fact that it's okay to be ourselves! A must for any haunted house!

Watch the trailer:


Additional Information:
Paperback: 34 pages
Publisher: Sunbury Press, Inc. (February 19, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1934597333
ISBN-13: 978-1934597330
Source of review copy: Author
Disclosure: Some of the books I review are received from publishers , PR agencies, and authors, but it does not sway my opinion of the book.

Calling unpublished CT children's authors and illustrators

Are you an unpublished writer or illustrator of children’s books? Have you dreamed of a chance to have your writing or portfolios reviewed by a literary agent or book publisher? Then here's an amazing opportunity for you.

The Shoreline Arts Alliance is presenting the twelfth annual New Voices in Children’s Literature: Tassy Walden Awards competition. This contest affords unpublished authors and illustrators of children’s books the opportunity to have manuscripts and portfolios reviewed by literary agents and possibly by editors and art directors at some of the major publishing houses for children’s literature.

The New Voices in Children’s Literature: Tassy Walden Awards is a Connecticut statewide, juried competition opened to writers and illustrators who are not published or under contract for publication. Categories are: Picture Book (text only), Illustrated Picture Book (author and illustrator must be same person), Illustrator’s Portfolio, Middle Grade Novel and Young Adult/Teen Novel.

All submissions for this year’s contest must be postmarked by February 3, 2012.

As if the contest is not enough, The Shoreline Arts Alliance will also be offering FREE workshops in preparation for this year’s contest. The facilitators will review the submission guidelines and the current industry standards and provide insight and answer questions related to getting your work "out there" to literary agents and publishers. Workshops are in the following locations:
November 15, 5:30 – 7:30pm,New Haven Free Public Library, 133 Elm Street, New Haven
November 29, 7 – 9pm, Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts, 84 Lyme Street, Old Lyme
December 1, 7 – 9pm, Fairfield University Bookstore, 1499 Post Road, Fairfield

Please visit www.ShorelineArts.org or contact the office at (203) 453-3890 for 2011 Call for Entry and guidelines or for additional information or questions on preparing manuscripts and portfolios for submission. And GOOD LUCK!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Never Kick a Ghost

Looking for a collection of Halloween short stories for your developing reader? Enter NEVER KICK A GHOST: AND OTHER SILLY CHILLERS by Judy Sierra. That's right--THE Judy Sierra who wrote WILD ABOUT BOOKS. This Easy-Reader contains 4 short-stories that feature South Sea Sue, Blackbeard's bride; Sam Sniff who learns to never kick a ghost; and a big slobbery monster. There's also a short rhyme and some funny epitaphs that will keep your young reader entertained.

These silly, spooky tales are rated PG, so you won't have to worry about nightmares, but the stories are just the right size for some spooktacular fun!


Additional Information:

Reading level: Ages 4-8
Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: HarperCollins (July 26, 2011)
ISBN-10: 0061435198
ISBN-13: 978-0061435195
Source of review copy: Publisher


Disclosure: Some of the books I review are received from publishers , PR agencies, and authors, but it does not sway my opinion of the book.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Frightfully funny knock-knock jokes

Knock, Knock!
Who's there?
Howl!
Howl who?
Howl you be dressing up this Halloween?


Sorry, I couldn't resist! But if your young reader is a fan of knock, knock jokes, then you have to pick up a copy of HALLOWEEN HOWLERS. Full of frightfully funny knock-knock jokes, your young reader will definitely enjoy thumbing through and cracking these jokes on every member of your family! But that's not all. Each page offers lift-the-flaps that reveal the answer to the joke, making this even more fun. 

Additional Information:
Reading level: Ages 4-8
Paperback: 16 pages
Publisher: HarperFestival; Original edition (July 26, 2011)
ISBN-10: 0061808911
ISBN-13: 978-0061808913
Source of review copy: Publisher
Disclosure: Some of the books I review are received from publishers , PR agencies, and authors, but it does not sway my opinion of the book.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Fish for a Free Book: October 21

It's time to fish for a free book!

If you are hosting a children's book giveaway, or if you found a giveaway somewhere on the net that you just have to share, I'd love to have you share your links with us here on our weekly giveaway linky so that we can all stop by and enter.

If you're looking for more children's book giveaways, be sure to visit
Brimful Curiosities' Full to the Brim,
Winning Readings (listings of adult and children's book giveaways),
and Got Great Giveaways? (linky of adult and children's book giveaways at I Am a Reader, Not a Writer)

Please post your links however you wish. Some like to include their blog name, some just want to leave the prize and the ending date. Post it whatever way you feel like, but make sure that the prize listing and the date the giveaway ends is listed. And make sure you post a link directly to your giveaway - not just to your main blog page.

Here's an example:
Your name: Lori Calabrese Writes--Two YA Novels--6/24
Your URL: http://loricalabrese.blogspot.com/2011/06/welcome-to-midsummers-eve-giveaway-hop.html

Now it's your turn. Leave your links here...
(If you're reading this in a reader, please click through to the original post)

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Get into the Halloween spirit with The 13 Nights of Halloween

2 Halloweens back, I reviewed The 13 Days of Halloween by Carol Greene. A trick used by many children's book authors is to cleverly transform a story from the tune of a famous song or in this case, a Christmas carol. Greene made a spooktacular tale told to the tune of "The Twelve of Days of Christmas" and I must admit, my kids still ask for this one.

That's why I was surprised to find THE 13 NIGHTS OF HALLOWEEN by Guy Vasilovich. That's right, just like The 13 Days of Halloween, Vasilovich has transformed 'The Twelve of Days of Christmas' into his own Halloween version. I must admit that I like Carol Greene's version better, but Vasilovich has definitely mastered the art of illustration! The illustrations absolutely make this book. For example, on the third night of Halloween, there's nothing better than seeing 3 Baseball Bats--Of course, we see 3 bats with baseball hats.

This is one of those books that will definitely get you in the Halloween spirit and young readers will be begging you to sing the song over and over again. 

Additional Information:
Reading level: Ages 4-8
Hardcover: 40 pages
Publisher: HarperCollins (July 26, 2011)
ISBN-10: 0061804452
ISBN-13: 978-0061804458
Source of review copy: Publisher
Disclosure: Some of the books I review are received from publishers , PR agencies, and authors, but it does not sway my opinion of the book.