Saturday, April 30, 2022

Picture Book Review: Almost Always Best, Best Friends

Poppy and Clemintine are BEST FRIENDS and they do everything together. But then Clemintine plays with someone new. Poppy is worried about losing her friend. They have a big fight without saying what they really mean. Poppy talks with her father who helps her find the right words. The two best friends talk and work everything out.

A great book about friendship, anger, finding the right words, and saying you're sorry. I loved the role playing with Poppy and her father when they explored Poppy's feelings. That is such an important message for everyone, And of course I loved the idea of a bookmark business.

Library Recommendation: Grab this one for your school and public library shelves

* this book was sent for review. 

Friday, April 29, 2022

Book Pairings (4) Fiction and Nonfiction

Just a few fiction picture books written by the authors and nonfiction books about the authors' lives. 



Thursday, April 28, 2022

Blog Tour: Mad Girls of New York


About the Book:
Maya Rodale brings to life the true story of the infamous Nellie Bly: a daring female journalist who, in the 1800s, paved the way for women to enter the newsroom. Bly quickly became known for revealing New York City’s injustices by practicing “stunt journalism,” or going undercover and taking extreme risks to expose a story. The first in an all-new series inspired by Bly’s investigative escapades, THE MAD GIRLS OF NEW YORK (Berkley Trade Paperback; on sale April 26, 2022) follows Bly on one of her first stunt assignments: going undercover as a madwoman at a deplorable New York insane asylum.

Rodale relied upon Bly’s book, Ten Days in a Madhouse, which offers a compilation of Bly’s articles and her first-hand narratives about her experiences at Blackwell’s, to inform the writing of the novel. Rodale’s keen storytelling brings Bly to life as a vibrant, modern, and relatable young woman who is trying to make a name and a career for herself in New York City. Historical fiction fans are in for a treat, as are Rodale’s returning romance readers, who will swoon over the romantic chemistry between Nellie and her instant career nemesis Sam Colton.

“There were all kinds of madness, she supposed, and hers was daring to dream.”

About the Author:
Maya Rodale is the best-selling and award-winning author of funny, feminist fiction including historical romance, YA and historical fiction. A champion of the romance genre and its readers, she is also the author of Dangerous Books For Girls: The Bad Reputation of Romance Novels, Explained. Maya reviews romance for NPR and has appeared in Bustle, Glamour, Shondaland, Buzzfeed, The Huffington Post and PBS. She began reading romance novels in college at her mother’s insistence and has never been allowed to forget it.

My Thoughts:
I'm currently reading this book right now and loving it! I'm 1/3 of the way through and it's amazing. I'm a big Maya Rodale fan. I can't wait to learn more about Nellie Bly and I'm so happy this is the first in a series! 

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Picture Book Wednesday: Yoga


Yoga Bunny practices yoga, but his friends are all too busy to join him. 

Yoga bunny returns and meets a new friend who is anxious about celebrating her birthday. Of course Yoga Bunny has a few tips.

Fun books about friendship, slowing down, and of course yoga. The illustrations are sweet. There are yoga moments within the story but also on the end pages.

This adventure takes place on all seven continents with yoga moves mimicking animals. 

This diverse story contains lots of travel and lots of fun. It would be a great storytime read for older kids. There are yoga movements within the story and also combined at the end. 

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Top Ten Tuesday: Cover Love

This week's topic is cover love
So here are a few covers on upcoming books that have caught my eye!

Any of these catch your eye?

Monday, April 25, 2022

Book Lists: Fake Dating

Yesterday, I reviewed the movie Marry Me (which I really enjoyed). While it's not exactly fake dating, it reminded me of those books. So I thought I would make a book list.

The first book I remember fake dating was:
Which was my first post of this blog...

Adult Books Listed:
Duke and I by Julia Quinn
Red, White, & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston
The Wedding Date by Jasmine Guillory
Prince on Paper by Alyssa Cole

Teen Books Listed:
She Drives Me Crazy by Kelly Quindlen
To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han
Rent a Boyfriend by Gloria Chao

Other Fake Dating Stories I've Enjoyed:
Dating Plan

What are some others?


Sunday, April 24, 2022

Movie Review: Marry Me

Marry Me is the new Jennifer Lopez movie with Owen Wilson. She discovers her boyfriend was cheating on her moments before they were supposed to get married in front of their fans (they are both singers). Instead, she picks a nice guy out from the crowd and marries him.

Owen Wilson plays a single father working hard to raise his daughter - and teaching math to kids. 

Of course once they're married - they start to get to know each other. Owen Wilsons character begins to understand the fame and the culture around celebrities. While Jennifer Lopez's character begins to enjoy a bit of normal life.

Even though they're technically married - it reminds me a fake dating story. I really enjoyed this morning. I liked both characters and their view into each other's world. I really liked the daughter and the best friend of Owen Wilson's character. And the math moments with the kids were a great touch - they tugged at the heart strings. All in all, a fun enjoyable movie.  


Saturday, April 23, 2022

Puppy Update (2)


They sat still long enough for one picture

Blooper photo


Nothing to see here, just toe biting 

Resting outside after playing for an hour




Friday, April 22, 2022

Picture Books: Happy Earth Day


Just a few picture books about trees to celebrate Earth Day

Great knowledge about trees with gorgeous illustrations!

After a misunderstanding of ordering, the characters plant SO Many trees - trees of all different shapes and sizes. The placement of the trees is really neat. 

This book makes you want to explore more. I loved how it wove everything together from the trees to the animals. We're all interdependent on each other. And of course, communication helps!

Thursday, April 21, 2022

Author Interview: Erin Soderberg Downing


About the Book (book 2)

Much to their surprise, the Peaches had a great summer running their food truck business, but they’re happy to be back home in Duluth, Minnesota, where they can settle into a routine just in time for the new school year. That is, until Great Aunt Lucinda drops a big surprise on them: She wants to gift them her historic mansion. But there are conditions: they’re to turn it into a cozy and welcoming bed-and-breakfast, something the Peach kids’ mom always dreamed of before she passed away. And they only have until Thanksgiving to do the renovations and prove they can make the business work. It looks like it’s a new chapter of The Great Peach Experiment!

But as the Peaches roll up their sleeves, they quickly realize the house is more of a pit than a welcoming escape. And as the family juggles builders, possible hauntings, doggie obedience training, a treasure hunt, and the demands and worries of work and school, they soon realize that there are wonderful secrets hidden within the house’s walls, if only they can take the time to see them...

My Thoughts: I loved book 2! I loved the family trying to renovate the house to make it a B&B. I loved hearing about the different room decorations. I loved Lucy's secret room, Freddy's art project, Herb's job, the treasure hunt, and the baking. I felt bad that everyone was stressed and for Herb when Freddy messed with him. There's so much family, togetherness, and friendship in this book. I didn't want to put this book down! I can't wait to spend more time with the Peaches.

* ARC sent for review

About Erin:

Erin Soderberg Downing has written more than fifty books for kids, tweens, teens, and adults. Some of her most popular titles include the middle-grade novel Moon Shadow and four fun chapter book series: The Great Peach Experiment, Disney’s Daring Dreamers Club, Puppy Pirates, and The Quirks.

Erin loves creating stories that are accessible and help inspire a lifelong love of reading for fun. Before becoming an author, Erin was a children’s book editor, a cookie inventor, and also worked for Nickelodeon. She lives in Minneapolis with her husband, three hilarious kids, Wally the cuddly goldendoodle (star of Puppy Pirates!), and a tiny, mischievous Aussiedoodle named Nutmeg.

I'm so excited to chat with Erin. 

What themed room would you create?

 I would absolutely create a cozy reading nook in my dream treehouse or in my B&B! I'd fill it with smooshy beanbags and Squishmallows (so much soft stuff to flop into that you couldn't even see or feel the floor!), lots of books, plenty of twinkly fairy lights, and a bunch of candy in colorful bowls around the room (gummi bears and M&Ms are my favorite!)

That sounds amazing!

Are you more a creative or scientific person?

 I'm definitely more of a creative person, but I do approach my writing in a pretty scientific way. I like to plot out my stories fairly carefully before I start writing, breaking the whole book out into scene-by-scene events so I have a map to follow while I'm writing. Then I even go so far as to create plot maps and charts that help me keep track of what's going on with each character and storyline at any given point in the book. So even though my brain is definitely happiest when it's making stuff up, my imagination *works* best when I've set myself up for success. 

Wow, that's awesome! And definitely scientific! 

What's your favorite breakfast food?

Depends on the day and my mood! But you really can't go wrong with a good muffin or pancake or waffle. In fact, I'm usually pretty satisfied with a just-ok muffin, to tell you the truth. Fun fact: my daughter, Milla, created the recipe for "Cousin Millie's" muffins in THE PEACH PIT book! She did a lot of testing and experimenting, and we all enjoyed eating each of her yummy attempts. I also really like cereal (Lucky Charms!), bagels and cream cheese, fried eggs, and breakfast burritos - breakfast is *definitely* my favorite meal of the day!

 Breakfast foods are so good!

What's the most mischievous thing your dog(s) have done?

My favorite mischief was the time my older dog, Wally, stole a whole package of English muffins off the kitchen counter. He ripped into the plastic around the package, ate one muffin, then carefully put the other individual English muffins in various spots throughout the house for safekeeping so he could eat them later. We found one in his bed, one in my bed, and one on the couch. 

Lol. That's great and terrible at the same time. I have a little puppy right now and he's always up to something!

Do you believe in ghosts?

 Not the scary kind. I do believe that there is all kinds of history surrounding us, and that the "ghosts" of our past live on in the walls of a house and in the heart of a family (which is something I wrote into THE PEACH PIT, for Herb to figure out!). Ghosts aren't something I really *worry* about in my daily life, but I certainly wouldn't ever choose to stay in a B&B or hotel or house that is rumored to be haunted - which I guess tells you something about what I do and don't believe in!

I feel the same, I wouldn't choose to stay in a place that's supposed to be haunted with the hopes of seeing a ghost. 

Thanks so much for chatting with me! I hope everyone enjoys the 2nd book just as much as I did!

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

Top Ten Tuesday: Book Merch

 This week's topic is Book Merch and I'm sharing bookmarks

These can be found on Etsy!

Also Epik Page

Same shop as above (They have so many great bookmarks)




And my own bookmarks: