Reading Challenge

2013 Reading Challenge

2013 Reading Challenge
Pat has read 0 books toward a goal of 100 books.
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2014 Reading Challenge

2014 Reading Challenge
Pat (Get Kids to Read) has read 0 books toward his goal of 50 books.
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2015 Reading Challenge

2015 Reading Challenge
Pat (Get Kids to Read) has read 3 books toward his goal of 25 books.
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August 30, 2015

Review: Playing by the Rules

Playing by the Rules: A Story about AutismPlaying by the Rules: A Story about Autism by Dena Luchsinger
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

Josh has autism and his great aunt has come to visit. His sister teaches his great aunt all about Josh's special needs. This book was interesting but it was poorly written. The ending was just thrown in and comes far too suddenly. There are other books that handle autism better than this one does. Even the illustrations look unfinished and the color escapes some of the lines.
This like The Curious Incident of the dog in the night time is an book that includes an autistic character but fails to create a good story to go with the character.

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August 29, 2015

Review: Know and Follow Rules

Know and Follow RulesKnow and Follow Rules by Cheri J. Meiners
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Know and Follow Rules by Cheri J Meiners is a straight forward picture book that is perfect for the start of the school year. Orientation in library,music,art classes always involve going over the rules. This book does not have much of a story but the pages are written in a positive way with "I can" sentences. There are a lot of ideas in the back of the book for activities. This book would be best for PK-1.

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Review: Library Lion

Library LionLibrary Lion by Michelle Knudsen
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Library Lion is the perfect storybook to use in a school library with the primary grades. A gentle and heartwarming story of a lion that learns to follow rules and a librarian that learns there are exceptions to rules. This is a must own for librarians. One day a lion wanders into the library. After listening to several stories he makes too much noise and must promise to follow the rules if he is to return to the library. The lion promises to follow the rules about roaring in the library and is very helpful. When something tragic happens, the lion and the librarian learn a valuable lesson.

This is one of the best storybooks you can use for library orientation with PK-2 students. This is highly recommended.

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Fans of Hoot and Seekers!

I just finished a book called Secrets of Bearhaven.  It comes out in January.  It is an awesome eco adventure, perfect for fans of Hoot and Seekers.  My full review will be in School Library Journal.  
Happy Reading

August 28, 2015

Late for School

Late for SchoolLate for School by Mike Reiss
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Late For School by Michael Reiss is a creative picture book that is a great choice for the new school year. Perfect for children in Kindergarten - grade 3, the story is told in a rhyme scheme. Smitty is a little boy who lives in New York and he prides himself on the fact that he is never late for school. The story is told in a repeating rhyme pattern complemented with illustrations that were airbrushed in liquid acrylic.
With humor in the text and illustrations, Late for School is a great choice to buy for a child starting a new school year in September.

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Review: Nightmares!

Nightmares! (Nightmares!, #1)Nightmares! by Jason Segel
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Nightmares! by Jason Segel and Kirsten Miller is the first in a new series that perfectly combines spookiness and warmth. Charlie Laird is convinced his stepmother is a witch, and he is being plagued by a nightmare about a witch eating him. His life is a bit of a mess. Things go from bad to worse when the witch from his nightmare enters the real world to kidnap his brother. Charlie is determined to rescue his brother. He travels through the portal to a land of nightmares on a rescue mission.

Charlie is a normal kid, he is relatable which makes him great protagonist. The only way for him to rescue his brother and escape back to the real world is to face his biggest fears head on.
Moving at a fast enough pace for reluctant readers but still taking enough time to develop Charlie as a character, Nightmares is great at what it tries to be, a spooky tale filled with warmth and sprinkled with humor.
Fans of Monsters Inc will enjoy Nightmares as it has a slightly similar storyline, with a Goosebumps edge to it. Nightmares is a book that should be on your shelf pernmanently.


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August 27, 2015

Review: Wanda's First Day

Wanda's First DayWanda's First Day by Mark Sperring
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Wanda's First Day is an excellent beginning of the school year book to use with Kindergarten and first grade classes. Wanda is a witch, and she starts a new school where everyone else is a fairy. Realizing she doesn't fit in she asks if she is in the right place. As the day goes by she makes friends and learns that it is ok to be different. The character of Wanda and her insecurities about being different speak perfectly to the feelings that children have when they enter a new school. There are many beginning of the school year books. If a teacher does not share this with your child, borrow it from the library and read it together.

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August 25, 2015

Review A Whole New World. Updated 8/29/15

A Whole New World (A Twisted Tale #1)A Whole New World by Liz Braswell
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Review:
A Whole New World by Lisa Briswell

A copy was provided by Netgalley in exchange for this review.
On Sale September 1, 2015

Aladdin is a Disney Classic. The best of the early 1990's movies. A Whole New World is part of a series that takes one major event and changes it. An alternate universe Aladdin story. Aladdin did not summon the Genie first. Jafar was able to get the Genie and become sultan much earlier. This causes a shift in the time line and the people begin to rebel with Aladdin's help.
Probably because of my love for the material, I was so excited for this book. The first 25% is word for word identical to the movie. Once it shifts the tone changes into a sort of ancient dystopian novel where Aladdin and Jasmine have to lead a Hunger Games esque rebellion to usurp Jafar. This is where the tone completely changes and it looses everything that made Aladdin great. The Genie is not as funny, and it is not a fault of Briswell that she can not write as funny as the great Robin Williams, but when depicting one of the funniest Disney characters, you need to make him funny.
A Whole New World was ultimately disappointing. Here's hoping the second volume in this series is a little better.

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August 24, 2015

Review: Ellie & the Golden Cricket

Ellie & the Golden CricketEllie & the Golden Cricket by Dalyce Elliott Young
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A copy of this book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

Ellie and the Golden Cricket is a well illustrated story book about perseverance and working hard. Ellie is trying to play the violin, without much luck. She asks her grandmother for help and she suggests getting help from the cricket. Ellie and her friend Andrew go on a quest to find the cricket. The journey to find the cricket teaches Ellie an important lesson about working hard and perseverance.
The illustrations are well done with pastels. The pastels make the illustrations glow and seem to come to life.
With a simple story that is the perfect length for preschool and Kindergarten children, Ellie & the Golden Ticket will have wide appeal. This is the perfect addition to a collection for children.

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August 20, 2015

Review: The Sand Castle Contest

The Sand Castle ContestThe Sand Castle Contest by Robert Munsch
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

You can't go wrong with Robert Munsch. Munsch is the author of many classics like Love You Forever and Something Good. His books are clever, funny and well written.
The Sand Castle Contest is about a family that is going to the beach. When they get there Matthew enters a Sand Castle contest to win a tub filled with ice cream.
What follows is the typical Munsch comedy. Children and adults will enjoy The Sand Castle Contest.



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