Sunday, July 31, 2011

Nonfiction Monday stops at Lori Calabrese Writes!

Welcome to Nonfiction Monday! Nonfiction Monday takes place every Monday as various blogs throughout the kidlitosphere write about nonfiction books for kids and collect them all in one place.  I'm excited to be hosting this week's installment, so if  you have a link to share, please include it in the linky list below. Otherwise, be sure to check out all of the great posts featured. To see the entire schedule for Nonfiction Monday, please visit the blog of Anastasia Suen

Weird but True! 3: 300 Outrageous FactsSome of my favorite nonfiction books for young readers are the National Geographic Kids' Weird But True Series. Weird but True! 3: 300 Outrageous Facts is the third installment and just as fun as the first two.

Young readers will be fascinated by such outrageous facts like kangaroos can jump more than 30 feet in one hop. That's the length of 12 skateboards! Also, a baby humpback whale drinks up to 130 gallons of milk each day; warthogs don't have warts; and at a restaurant in Michigan, you can order a supersize hamburger that weighs as much as a grown man!

You can't make this stuff up! These books are irresistible with their easy to read design, vibrant photos and wacky facts. I know I can't wait to check out the Ultimate version,  NG Kids Ultimate Weird but True: 1,000 Wild & Wacky Facts and Photos (National Geographic), which will be released in September!

Additional Information:
Reading level: Ages 9-12
Paperback: 208 pages
Publisher: National Geographic Children's Books; Original edition (June 14, 2011)
ISBN-10: 1426307667
ISBN-13: 978-1426307669
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.

Ted Saves the World Blog Tour and Giveaway

Bryan Cohen is a writer, actor and comedian from Dresher, Pennsylvania. He graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2005 with degrees in English and Dramatic Art and a minor in Creative Writing. He has written seven books including 1,000 Creative Writing Prompts: Ideas for Blogs, Scripts, Stories and More.

Today, Bryan's blog tour for his latest book, Ted Saves the World: A Novella, stops right here at Lori Calabrese Writes! and I was fortunate enough to ask Bryan about the book and his path to publication. Not to mention, he's also offering an amazing giveaway, so read on...

Ted Saves the World: A NovellaAbout Ted Saves the World (Available for just $0.99):
A possessed cheerleader. A cursed gang of criminals. Mysterious telekinetic powers. An angry ex-girlfriend in gym class? One second, sophomore in high school Ted endures his first breakup in his favorite place in town. The next, a mysterious blue light turns him into a worldwide superhero sensation for taking down a posse of grisly murderers. As his views on YouTube increase and his friend Dhiraj tries to capitalize on the marketing potential, his dangers increase as well when a presumed-dead cheerleader begins taking a personal interest. Can Ted survive his first week as a superhero in the public eye? This novella is the first taste in a series of full-length novels about the adventures of Ted Finley and Erica LaPlante. The book is also available on Barnes & Noble and Smashwords for $0.99.

Tell us about your path to publication.
A long time ago, I thought that I wasn't good enough (an all too common occurrence among people in the world) and so I kept most of my ideas to myself. Through years of confidence building and making a fool out of myself on stage, I figured I'd write anyway even if it wasn't on par with some of the greats. About a year ago, I found out about self-publishing, Amazon Kindle, all of that stuff and I figured I'd put out a book of writing prompts. Sales boomed (well, increased from 0 at least) and my confidence went through the roof. When I had an idea for a young-adult television pilot, I decided to turn it into a fiction book and here we are!

Tell us a little about TED SAVES THE WORLD.
Ted Saves the World is a little bit of an homage to "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" in that it's a bunch of teenagers fighting bad guys while keeping their sense of humor. I wanted the book to be a laugh riot and to really connect the readers to the characters. Just like a girl named Buffy saving the town from vampires, I wanted a guy with a low-key name like Ted to save the universe. There's mythology, there's romance, there's wordplay. It's full of the kind of stuff I love to read and I hope that my readers feel the same way I do about it.

What inspired you to write TED SAVES THE WORLD?
Joss Whedon was a big influence as far as creating "Buffy" was concerned, but as far as writing fiction in general, I've been inspired by the many self-published authors that have created a major following despite not being under one of the major publishing umbrellas. These authors wrote what they wanted to write and are making a living for themselves. It's wonderful for authors to have such power in the process. I'd love to be able to claim I make a living solely off of my books someday.

Your work has consisted of plays and screenplays. What led you to writing a YA novel?
It's funny but long before I wrote a single play or screenplay, I was in college trying to be a fiction writer. I wrote a ton of fiction before I penned my first stage direction. I went in the direction of drama for years before I came back to my original passion of fiction. The YA totally makes sense if you know me. Many of my friends would refer to me as a big kid and the goofiness quotient runs high in my life. That's the cool thing about YA books. People of all ages who haven't quite shed their adolescence read YA books, which is why the Harry Potter and Twilight books have been so successful. The authors are able to tap into their readers' inner children. When your inner child is bigger than your inner adult like me, tapping into this mindset is not very difficult.

You have a very successful website, Build Creative Writing Ideas. What made you start this site and how did it lead to your book, 1,000 Creative Writing Prompts?
The first few years after college I had a major problem with keeping myself motivated. In school, I was amazing when it came to getting assignments completed on time. Without someone there to assign me things to do, I felt lost. After reading books in the self-help and personal development field, I figured the best way for me to put these wise words into practice was to help people who were going through the same things I had. Thus the website. Some of my most popular pages were my writing prompts pages and so I concentrated on them for over a year and a half. Before I knew it, I had over 800 prompts and said to myself, "800 is close to 1,000. 1,000 would make a good book." I pushed myself into the goal and made it a reality.

I LOVE the fact that you wrote another writing prompt book specifically for kids titled, 500 Writing Prompts for Kids. How did you come up with all of these writing prompts and why do you think it's important to get children writing?
Aw, thanks. I love it too. With television and gadgets galore, I worry that kids are dispensing of their very vital imagination at all too young an age. These prompts are my little effort to help kids to work that imagination again and to love writing. In a world where kids are learning to condense their thoughts into 140 characters or less, it has become increasingly important to express themselves in full sentences. I hope that the book can help with this need for a writing revolution.

Now onto the Giveaway:

Bryan Cohen is giving away four $25 Amazon gift cards, one for each week of his month long blog tour. To enter, simply comment with your e-mail address (feel free to substitute @ with (at) or other tricks to stop spammers from getting it). Bryan will draw the four names at the end of the tour, picking one entrant at random from each week’s set of blog posts. Entries will be counted through Monday, August 15th, 2011. Enter on as many sites as you want, and follow the tour at Build Creative Writing Ideas. If Ted reaches the Top 100 on Amazon at any point during the tour, a fifth $25 card will be added to the giveaway.

Contact Bryan through his Ted Saves the World blog, his Build Creative Writing Ideas site or Twitter.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Fish for a Free Book: July 29

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. Piggy Toes Press

2. Playing by the book - Funny picture book - 1 Aug

3. Mymcbooks - 8/15

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Thursday, July 28, 2011

Big words like leukemia and chemotherapy can't compare to the biggest word of all

Samson's TaleBattling a disease can be a trying time for any family and in Samson's Tale by Carla Mooney, we learn that it even reaches man's best friend.

Samson is the family dog and he's waiting anxiously on the porch for his owner, Daniel. Samson heard Daniel's mom and dad talk about 'leukemia' and 'hospitals' and Samson had never been away from Daniel for so long. When a car pulls in the driveway, Samson can't wait to jump on Daniel and lick his face like old times. But Daniel's mom tells Samson to give him some space. As Daniel takes his medicine, goes through chemo, and shaves his head, Samson is right there by his side. Daniel might be the hero to many for battling his cancer, but in Daniel's eyes, Samson is his hero.

This enduring tale, told by Samson himself, is a wonderful story to inform young readers about the trials and tribulations that come along with battling leukemia. A new haircut and big words like leukemia and chemotherapy can't change the love between friends and family. And for any child who's battling cancer, this book shows that even though there will be ups and downs, support is always close by.

Portions of the proceeds from this book go to Flashes of Hope in an effort to bring about awareness to childhood cancer.

Additional Information:
Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: Story Pie Press; First edition (April 12, 2011)
ISBN-10: 0984217827
ISBN-13: 978-0984217823
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. I maintain affiliate accounts with Amazon and Barnes & Noble. If you purchase a book through one of my links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). You can support this site by originating your purchase via these links and I appreciate your support of Lori Calabrese Writes!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Beast Friends Forever

Beast Friends Forever: The Super Swap-O Surprise!Imagine having a two-foot-tall beast named Otto living under your bed! Such is the case for nine-year-old Zeke in Beast Friends Forever: The Super Swap-O Surprise!.

In this second installment of the series, the adventures continue for Zeke and his new BFF, Otto, especially since Otto can do amazing things,or tricksy tricks as Otto likes to call them, like magically trading one of Zeke's drawings for an awesome, fiery, farting dragon. How it works is like this--A 'swap-o' trades something here for something on Triangle Island, where Otto is from and Zeke and his sister Hannah are determined to learn all about it. They swap out one of Zeke's sketches with some kind of spaceship and a monkey, forcing them to fight off banana barbarians; and they also face the mean green goon. But when local bullies Sid and Moronica threaten Zeke and Hannah, they realize they can use the super swap-o surprise to their advantage.

Young readers will love this series because it not only has comical characters, but features fun illustrations along with comic-book sequences that add to the adventure. The fast action, flying cannonballs, killer bananas, and TRex are sure to make this swap-o experiment a must read!

Hoobah!

Additional Information:
Reading level: Ages7-10
Paperback: 128 pages
Publisher: Sourcebooks Jabberwocky (August 1, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1402240511
ISBN-13: 978-1402240515
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.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Fish for a Free Book: July 22

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
2. Esther's Ever After - Forbidden Giveaway (Tabitha Suzuma) - Aug 5
3. Signed Little Skink's Tail picture book 8/3
4. Middle-grade novel ROTTEN ADVENTURES OF ZACHARY RUTHLESS ends 8/3/11

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Thursday, July 21, 2011

Author interview: Michael Thal talks about Goodbye Tchaikovsky

Michael Thal grew up in the suburbs of New York City on Long Island. He has a twin brother, Elliott, and an older brother, Harry. After graduating from the University of Buffalo he earned his master's degree in education at Washington University, St. Louis. When he moved to Los Angeles, he continued his education and earned another master's degree in Reading. He became interested in writing during his days in Buffalo writing reports for his history professor, Dr. David Abosch. While working for a private company in L.A. developing educational materials, he wrote a short story. His boss thought it was more of a treatment for a novel. Years later The Light: An Alien Abduction was published.

I recently had the opportunity to learn more about Michael Thal and his latest novel, Goodbye Tchaikovsky. . .

Tell us about your path to publication.
This is an interesting story. I responded to an e-mail request for authors regarding the need for writers to craft books about how a child went from little kid to astronaut, lawyer, or doctor. Since I spent 28 years in the classroom, I decided to write my story about why a pre-teen decided to become a teacher. I wrote “Between Two Worlds” for Scobre Press. They accepted the completed manuscript and put it on hold. Two years later, they decided to publish ONLY non-fiction books. I was livid, but what could I do? So I sought out other publishers. Finally, through the Writer’s Market I discovered Royal Fireworks Press, a Unionville, New York publisher. Their focus is gifted students. I waited for two years for them to go from manuscript to published book. Last winter the publisher sent me the edited document stating, “I have finished the editing of your book, which I enjoyed very much. It is very well written and required little from us.”

I started writing the book in 2004. It has gone through about 4 revisions. I got feedback from my on-line writing group, CritsInternational, which was a huge help. Royal Fireworks Press didn’t like my title because they felt it wouldn’t get enough hits on a search engine, so they changed the name to “Good-Bye Tchaikovsky.”

You've written over 60 short stories and articles. What are some of the challenges of writing a novel compared to a short story?
Actually, I’ve had over 70 articles published in print publications, but who’s counting? Writing an article is so much easier than writing a novel. First, organization is simpler. A novel needs more files where an article but one. For example, I’m currently working on an article for San Diego Family Magazine. First I write the query, get the editor interested. Once she gives me the go-ahead, I write a brief outline and develop questions needing answers. Then I contact a few experts, get their responses, then put the article together like a jig saw puzzle.

A novel first comes with an idea. For Good-Bye Tchaikovsky, I had to present the idea to the publisher. Once he approved, I developed the plot through outlining. I also had to develop the characters and setting. It gets complicated, so I keep a notebook of all the details to refer to as I move through the chapters. Tchaikovsky took over a year to write. The article I’ll send to my editor will have taken me 2-3 hours. Huge difference.

How do you think your experience as a teacher has affected your writing career?
I enjoy writing for children and their parents. I’m the father of two wonderful daughters, Channie and Koren. Being a dad has influenced my writing, too. Since I was a teacher for ½ my life, those skills have kept me organized and focused to the task. I also write a column for the Los Angeles Examiner about parenting and education, which I call, “Dear LA Teacher.” After reading a few of those articles you can tell it was written by an educator.

Tell us about your new novel, Good-Bye Tchaikovsky.
A twelve-year-old violin virtuoso, David Rothman, is plunged into a deaf world, necessitating him to adapt to a new culture and language in order to survive.

Rothman is an overnight success. He performs Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto in New York’s Symphony Hall with rave reviews attracting the attention of the Queen of England. His future is laid out for him like a well-lit freeway. Then, on his twelfth birthday, David suffers from a sudden and irreparable hearing loss, plunging him into a silent world.

The novel shows how an adolescent boy copes with deafness. How will he communicate with his friends? What can he do about school? Where does his future lie?

What inspired you to write your new novel, Good-Bye Tchaikovsky?
I grew up in the hearing world. As a child I played the violin, went to concerts, movies, and Broadway shows. When my daughters were still in elementary school, I woke up to a profound silence caused by a virus. The virus attacked again six years later making my right ear deaf and my left with a 65% loss. I can understand people one-on-one, but not in groups.

At the age of forty-four, the severe hearing loss took me away from my job as a sixth grade teacher. From that experience, I was inspired to write this story. It shows by example how middle school children can cope with adversity. If a person has a willingness to learn and an open mind to explore all possibilities, he can find a way to succeed.

I thought to myself, what would have happened to me if this occurred when I was in middle school? (I was teaching 6th grade at the time.) Since I couldn’t understand what my students were saying to me even with the hearing aides, I got disability from my ENT specialist. That’s when I decided to write professionally.

When Sobre Press approached me, I thought about how I would have reacted at age 12 to my hearing loss, and then wrote the book. As an adult, I took lip reading classes, and got very involved in ASL (American Sign Language), which I can “speak” fluently. (That took over a decade to learn; and I’m still learning.)
----

A big thanks to Michael Thal for sharing his story behind Goodbye Tchaikovsky. Please visit Michael Thal, LA Academic Success Examiner

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Coming soon: TouchyBooks 2.0

"They'll never replace a physical book."

"I'd rather feel the paper in my hands."

Have you guys heard these statements when having a discussion about digital books? I don't know about you guys, but I'm continually amazed at how far the technology has come when it comes to interactive digital books for kids for Smartphones and tablets. And although they might not replace a physical book, they certainly are a welcome addition to any child's library and they're a ton of fun.

That's why TouchyBooks, the world’s leading digital children’s bookstore with over 500,000 downloads and 300 titles, is announcing big changes in the next few weeks with the launch of TouchyBooks 2.0.

TouchyBooks will soon reveal its redesigned online store that will provide a cleaner, crisper, more user friendly interface, including a voting system, ticker to indicate total times a book has been read, parental controls on purchases, and more.

TouchyBooks is a excellent solution for parents who are looking for a collection of interactive and engaging stories for kids ages 2-7 all organized in a user-friendly bookstore app.

With this launch comes tons of prizes for their Facebook and Twitter fans during a weeklong celebration of activities and sharing, so be sure to "Like" their Facebook page and follow them on Twitter!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The special bond between mother and daughter

Mommy WhispersNothing can compare to the special bond a mother has with her daughter and that special relationship is powerfully conveyed in Mommy Whispers by Jenny Lee Sulpizio.

A girl remembers all the times her mother was there. How her mom would pray for her safety, for her health and that God would help her grow into a woman sure of herself and her place in this world. From her baby years to school years to marriage, her mom would always remind her, "You are God's gift to me, forever you will be." And when that same girl has her own child, she prays that she'll become a mother much like her own and whispers into her baby's ear, "You are God's gift to me, forever you will be."

This is beautifully written and will have you reaching for a box of tissues. Sulpizio has said this book was born out of an appreciation and special bond she shared with her daughter after her birth in 2003 and I can easily see it as becoming a keepsake for any mother and daughter. We all want what's best for our children and no matter what stage of life they're in, it's important to remind them how special they are and that they are God's gift.

Additional Information:
Paperback: 34 pages
Publisher: Isaac Publishing, Inc. (December 6, 2010)
ISBN-10: 1609200136
ISBN-13: 978-1609200138
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. I maintain affiliate accounts with Amazon and Barnes & Noble. If you purchase a book through one of my links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). You can support this site by originating your purchase via these links and I appreciate your support of Lori Calabrese Writes!

Monday, July 18, 2011

National Geographic Kids' Almanac 2012 does it again

National Geographic Kids Almanac 2012Each year, I can't wait to check out National Geographic Kids' Almanac. These books are jam-packed with everything you could imagine and the 2012 edition is no different.

Young readers will be fascinated to learn that in the summer of 2012, London will become the only city to host the Olympics three times; a colossal crater sits right in the middle of a city street in Guatemala City; floating homes are a growing trend; dog poop can double as an energy source; and the biggest snow sculpture in the world can weigh up to 100 tons!

Young readers can dive into different sections such as art, culture, dinosaurs, animals, etc... and there are even homework help sections where you can learn how to write the perfect letter, biography, essay and more. What's even cooler is that the 2012 edition now features digital extras. Just scan bar codes with your smart phone to see free National Geographic animal videos, photo galleries, and trivia quizzes.

Additional Information:
Reading level: Ages 9-12
Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: National Geographic Children's Books (May 24, 2011)
ISBN-10: 1426307837
ISBN-13: 978-1426307836
Source of review copy: publicist


This post is part of Nonfiction Monday! Nonfiction Monday takes place every Monday as various blogs throughout the kidlitosphere write about nonfiction books for kids and collect them all in one place. This week, check out the Nonfiction Monday roundup at Chapter Book of the Day. To see the entire schedule, please visit the blog of Anastasia Suen.

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, July 15, 2011

Fish for a Free Book: July 15

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. Fade Into Fantasy - box of books - ends 7/17
2. Legacy Learning & Gibson Teaches you to Play Guitar - ends 7/21
3. Mymcbooks
4. Signed Little Skink's Tail picture book 8/3

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

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Charlie the Ranch Dog rules the roost!

Charlie the Ranch DogYoung readers love animals and they will definitely fall in love with Charlie in Charlie the Ranch Dog by Ree Drummond, NY Times bestselling author of The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from an Accidental Country Girl.

Charlie lives on the ranch and frankly, he thinks he owns it! After all, there are many jobs that need to be done from keeping the cattle out of the garden, and keeping critters out that don't belong under the porch. However, it's not easy since Charlie has short legs and droopy eyelids that make him nap... a lot! However, when Charlie's really needed, he proves that he'll always come through.

Charlie the Ranch Dog is inspired by Drummond's beloved basset hound Charlie, a central figure in real life on the ranch and on Ree's famous blog, the Pioneer Woman. Charlie is easy to fall in love with and the amazing illustrations by Diane deGroat will have you wanting even more. This is such a fun book, it's easy to see why Charlie rules the roost on the NY Times Bestseller's list.

Read a fascinating post by Ree Drummond titled, "Twenty Steps to Writing a Children's Book." and check out this interview with Diane DeGroat at Jama Rattigan's Alphabet Soup.

Additional Information:

Reading level: Ages 4-8
Hardcover: 40 pages
Publisher: HarperCollins (April 26, 2011)
ISBN-10: 0061996556
ISBN-13: 978-0061996559
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. I maintain affiliate accounts with Amazon and Barnes & Noble. If you purchase a book through one of my links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). You can support this site by originating your purchase via these links and I appreciate your support of Lori Calabrese Writes!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

A Quest for Good Manners

A Quest for Good MannersWe all want our kids to have good manners, so why not send them on a quest in A Quest for Good Manners by Karin Lefranc?

Rosalind is not your typical princess. She and her pet dragon, Sparkler, are very rude. "What's the big deal with manners anyway?" the princess asks. "Why do we always have to say please and thank you? And who cares how we use a napkin?"

Appalled by this behavior, the queen banishes the impolite pair from her castle until they find Good Manners. Percival, the wizard, sends them on their quest with the help of a magic fork, facing several challenges along the way. Not until the final test do Rosalind and Sparkler discover the real secret behind Good Manners.

Let's face it, much like Rosalind, children think manners are just 'a bunch of boring rules,' so how do you instill good manners in your kids? As kids embark on this fun adventure, they'll be introduced to table manners; the magic words please and thank you; and kindness and consideration. Lefranc has found a way to make learning manners fun and perhaps when you're finished reading, you might even hear those two magic words, "Thank you."

Additional Information:
Reading level: Ages 4-8
Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: Beluga Press (June 1, 2011)
ISBN-10: 0983045909
ISBN-13: 978-0983045908
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. I maintain affiliate accounts with Amazon and Barnes & Noble. If you purchase a book through one of my links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). You can support this site by originating your purchase via these links and I appreciate your support of Lori Calabrese Writes!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Fish for a Free Book: July 8

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
2. YvonneJ - The Ultimate Top Secret Guide to Taking Over the World - 07/08/11
3. Lentil by Robert McCloskey Giveaway (LOW entries!) 7/15
4. Signed Little Skink's Tail picture book 8/3

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

Thursday, July 7, 2011

In Search of the Light

In Search of the LightWhen there's an eclipse of the sun and the day turns suddenly into night, a group of animals doesn't understand what happened to the light. So a general meeting is called to discuss the mystery.

As panic surges through the crowd, the animals agree that they must not accept their plight and they'll go off in search of light. And the adventure begins in the picture book, In Search of the Light by spiritual teacher Leonard Jacobson.

The animals pass through the forest of fear and eventually find their way to a land where nothing seems right. Although they often think of turning back, several interesting characters appear to help show them the way and in the end, they discover that the light was closer than they thought.

This is not your usual picture book, but it's a great resource to help children overcome fears and look inside themselves. The illustrations are absolutely breathtaking and young readers will enjoy taking this journey of discovery with Ned the Horse, Peter Rabbit, Bert the brave little Bumblebee and Molly Mouse

Additional Information:
Reading level: Ages 4-8
Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: Conscious Living Publications (June 1, 2011)
ISBN-10: 1890580058
ISBN-13: 978-1890580056
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. I maintain affiliate accounts with Amazon and Barnes & Noble. If you purchase a book through one of my links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). You can support this site by originating your purchase via these links and I appreciate your support of Lori Calabrese Writes!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Snowball's Antarctic Adventures

Tim Ostermeyer is a Master photographer who has won over 250 first place awards for his photography and if you get the chance to pick up Snowball's Antarctic Adventures you'll see why.

When Snowball realizes that all he can see is other Emperor penguins, he decides to explore Antarctica with his Emperor penguin friends. They tour Antarctica to find five other types of wildlife, locate beautiful Antarctic snow mountains, discover scenic icebergs, and treasure fun adventures. What kind of Antarctic wildlife will Snowball find? What shape mountains and icebergs will Snowball discover? Will he ride on his mother's feet the entire trip, or will he start to walk on his own?

This picture book is written in rhyme, but it's the amazing photography that steals the show. Young readers will be delighted to witness the amazing life of these penguins amongst snow-capped mountains and on several pages, you'll find interesting facts about different kinds of penguins and animals you'd find in Antarctica. As you turn the page and discover beautiful scenery and fascinating animals, you'll find yourself wanting to dart off to the Antarctic coastland.

Ostermeyer has written five children's wildlife books on baby foxes, polar bears, tigers and snow monkeys. You can learn more at www.FunAdventureWildlifeBooks.com

Additional Information:
Hardcover: 48 pages
Publisher: Wildlife Adventure Books (April 1, 2011)
ISBN-10: 0979422833
ISBN-13: 978-0979422836
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. I maintain affiliate accounts with Amazon and Barnes & Noble. If you purchase a book through one of my links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). You can support this site by originating your purchase via these links and I appreciate your support of Lori Calabrese Writes!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Fish for a Free Book: July 1

It's time to fish for a free book! 

If you're looking for some amazing book giveaways, be sure to visit the Freedom Giveaway Hop hosted by I Am a Reader, Not a Writer and Simply Stacie. What better way to celebrate the Fourth of July than with free books? Over 200 participating blogs are offering a book related giveaway and we're all linked up together so you can easily hop from one giveaway to another. This all takes place from Friday, July1 through Thursday, July 7. Enter my giveaway here!

And 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

2. Dear Sparkle - Book written by a cat - 7/7

3. Book Away--Signed copy of Uncommon Criminals- 7/15

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