Category: Books

See the Cat: Three Stories About A Dog

“Move over, Spot…Spoofing classic primers, Max the Dog talks back to the book in a twist that will have fans of funny early readers howling.”

Synopsis

See Max. Max is not a cat – Max is a dog. But much to Max’s dismay, the book keeps instructing readers to “see the cat.” How can Max get through to the book that he is a DOG? In a trio of stories for beginning readers, author David LaRochelle introduces the excitable Max, who lets the book know in irresistibly emphatic dialogue that the text is not to his liking. Illustrator Mike Wohnoutka hilariously depicts the pup’s reactions to the narrator and to the wacky cast of characters who upend Max’s – and readers’ – expectations as the three stories build to an immensely satisfying conclusion. Hooray, Max, hooray!

#MelAndNikkiReview

See the Cat: Three Stories About A Dog¬†is a great story for early readers and it will have everyone laugh out loud. Absolutely love the banter between dog and book throughout the three stories. We were very glad that by the end of the story, the dog finally got a better ending to the story with some tough negotiating. ūüėČ

The illustrations and storyline are a perfect combination to make this easy and fun for young readers. The repetitive wording is fantastic for early readers as it helps them pick up on reading much quicker. Nikki truly loved reading this book with me and I know in no time she will be reading this on her own to her family. It was hard to just read without giggling along the way.

“This book was so funny! I loved it! The best part is that it is easy to practice my reading.” – Nikki, Age 6

For this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give it¬†10 dogs out of 5!¬†A clever and funny story that will delight all readers. We truly recommend to give this book a read. ūüôā

If you would like to purchase a copy for your reader, click here. This book is recommended for ages four to eight.

About the Author

David LaRochelle is the author of many books for young readers, including Isle of You, illustrated by Jaime Kim, and Moo!, illustrated by Mike Wohnoutka. He is the recipient of a Sid Fleischman Humor Award as well as a Bell Award for Early Literacy. See David LaRochelle in White Bear Lake, Minnesota.

About the Illustrator

Mike Wohnoutka has illustrated more than twenty books for young readers, including Moo! by David LaRochelle. He is also the author and illustrator of several picture books, including Croc & Turtle. See Mike Wohnoutka in Minneapolis.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*This book was provided in exchange for an honest reviews. All opinions expressed are our own.

V is For Voting | Book Review

“V is for Voting is the perfect book to inspire all ages on the importance of voting.” – Momma Braga

Synopsis

V is for Voting is an engaging ABC book that introduces kids to concepts like social justice, civil rights, and democracy. Featuring Kate Farrell’s playful rhyming text, Caitlin Kuhwald’s bold art, and thoughtful material for further exploration, the book is a beautiful, and crucial, addition to every young reader’s library.

#MelAndNikkiReview

V is For Voting¬†is a great children’s book to truly inspire the little ones of the importance of voting. No one is ever to young to learn how our voices can be heard with using our right to vote.

Voting is something that has always been important in our household and it was something that my parents always told me that I need to do once I was the legal age to vote. It is a duty that I am proud to do and vote every election year.

This book encompases all the importance of voting in ways that children can relate. We loved how the alphabet was used to make the points easier for kids to comprehend. We also love the illustrations that were beautiful and diverse.

Therefore, for this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give it¬†5 stars out of 5!¬†“V is for voting to make your voice heard!”

If you would like to purchase this great book to inspire your little future, click here.

About the Author

Kate Farrell believes that every vote counts! She is a writer and an editor who lives in New York City. V is for Voting is her first picture book.

About the Author

Caitlyn Kuhwald has a BFA in illustration from the California College of the Arts in San Francisco and an MFA in painting from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Her work has appeared in various magazines, DVD covers, and books, including Who Did It First? 50 Scientists, Artists, and Mathematicians Who Revolutionized the World. She lives in Los Angeles. V is for Voting is her first picture book.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

– Momma Braga

*This book was provided in exchange of an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.

My Favorite Color | Book Review

My Favorite Color¬†will captivate readers of all ages to a pallet of colors that intertwine so beautifully. An absolute masterpiece at your fingertips.” – Momma Braga

Synopsis

People always ask for your favorite color. But who said you can only have one? Open this gorgeous board book to find an ode to ever-changing colors, offering a spectrum of hues evoking the sun, the sea, clouds, and dew-dappled fruit. In colorful grids of small squares Рsome translucent inserts, some painted on the pages РAaron Becker uses layering to make colors shift and transition from spread to mesmerizing spread. As fun to look at as an alluring paint-chip display and as inspiring as an artful concept book can be, My Favorite Color promises to be a favorite, well-thumbed read and a prized art object in itself.

#MelAndNikkiReview

My Favorite Color¬†exemplifies art in board book form and we absolutely love it! We found the concept of the book and the way colors changed and connected were brilliant. All the colors in the story captivated our eyes and hearts. It made me start to think how I can incorporate those colors in my interior design at home. ūüėČ

Nikki and I love talking about colors as we discuss how each of our favorite colors is better than the other. It has been an epic battle since Nikki was able to tell me that her favorite color is pink (mine is Purple). I am happy to say that this book allowed us to see beyond our favorite colors and appreciate all the colors that surround us.

As we read the story and came to the question, “I can only have one favorite color?” Nikki shouted, “You can have as many as you like.” As we turned the page to get the response, Nikki smiled with glee as it truly is impossible to just pick one. Nikki’s favorite color (today) is Pink and Blue. It may change as she grows but one thing that won’t change is her love for all the colors.

Therefore, for this #MelAndNikkiReview we give this book 10 rainbows out of 5! It truly brought color to life for us during reading time and it can definitely be treasured as a masterpiece of art.

If you would like to purchase a copy of this beautiful book, click here.

About the Author

Aaron Becker is the Caldecott Honor-winning author-illustrator of the Journey trilogy and of A Stone for Sascha, as well as You Are Light, the acclaimed companion book to My Favorite Color. His favorite color is bluish-green. And reddish-orange. And also yellow. He lives in western Massachusetts with his family.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*This book was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.

Show-How Guides: Paper Airplanes

“Master the art of paper airplanes with this show-how guide that provides step-by-step illustrations on how to create many paper airplane styles.” – Momma Braga

Show-How Guides

Show-How Guides are joyful primers for curious minds – collectible, visual, step-by-step handbooks that teach the skills every kid should know! This pocket-sized 101 series introduces kids of all ages to the perennial talents, hobbies, skills, and hands-on activities they’ll treasure for a lifetime. Each book includes a curated collection of essential skills and every step is illustrated, allowing kids to truly and easily master the basics, regardless of how they learn. Finally, fun and friendly tutorials you can understand at a glance! Show-How Guides are an affordable stocking stuffer, birthday gift, or impulse buy.

#MelAndNikkiReview

Show-How Guides: Paper Airplanes is a great book for children to learn how to make paper airplanes. We love how this guide provides illustrations with step-by-step tutorials on 11 essential airplane models.

We took it to the test and tried one out ourselves and we went with the¬†Eagle style which is featured below. After a few tries we got it! It is perfectly ok to feel frustrated at first but never give up. We didn’t give up and we loved the result. By the end, you will feel like an expert.

For this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give this guide 5 planes out of 5! Get off to a flying start and get started today! If you would like to purchase your very own Show-How Guide, click here.

About the Author

Keith Zoo is an illustrator living near Boston, MA. For the past decade, he’s been the Lead Artist at FableVision Studios, working on a full range of things, from character design to animation layout, interactives and design. When he’s not there, he loves spending his time drawing monsters, goblins and other silly things.

About the Publisher

Odd Dot is a publisher of notification books with innovative formats for kids of all ages, with lists that range from STEM-oriented workbooks, to board books with wheels, and beyond. Combining fun and delightful artists with expert, knowledgeable, and creative authors allows Odd Dot to make joyful books for curious minds.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*This book was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.

Love Is Powerful | Book Review

Love is Powerful¬†is an empowering children’s story that shows us that one little voice can be carried out to millions. All you need to do is believe, have confidence and never be afraid to speak up.” – Momma Braga

Synopsis

Mari raised her sign for everyone to see. Even though she was small and the crowd was very big, and she didn’t think anyone would hear, she yelled out.

Mari is getting ready to make a sign with crayons as the streets below her fill up with people. “What are we marking, Mama?” she asks. “A message for the world,” Mama says. “How will the whole world hear?” Mari wonders. “They’ll hear,” says Mama, “because love is powerful.”

Inspired by a girl who participated in the January 2017 Women’s March in New York City, Heather Dean Brewer’s simple and uplifting story, delightfully illustrated by LeUyen Pham, is a reminder of what young people can do to promote change and equality at a time when our country is divided by politics, race, gender, and religion.

#MelAndNikkiReview

Love is Powerful¬†is an empowering children’s book that is so refreshing to read. We loved the storyline and illustrations throughout. The message is loud and clear for our young activists that every voice should be heard. But most importantly that you CAN be heard.

We love how the book included a note from Mari who is the star of the story and her telling us of her real life experience of being heard. A six year old inspired everyone to chant “Love is Powerful.” It is empowering to hear stories like this as it reminds us that we all can be heard.

Therefore, for this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give it 5 hearts out of 5! Beautiful storyline and illustrations that will empower the little ones and even the adults reading the story. It truly touched our hearts and we recommend to give this book a read.

If you would like to purchase this great book, click here. This book is great for children’s ages five to eight years of age.

About the Author

Heather Dean Brewer¬†is a writer, artist, and art director who designs books for kids and adults and loves to ride her bike in the woods. About this book she says, “I’ve often felt quiet and small and that no one could hear me. But when I joined others in the Women’s March and saw my friend Mari lifted above the crowd, her voice echoing down the streets of New York City, I learned that even the smallest voice has the power to change the world.” Heather Dean Brewer lives in Michigan wit her family and loves to ride her bike in the woods.

About the Illustrator

LeUyen Pham¬†is a Caldecott Honor recipient and the illustrator of over one hundred books for children, including the Princess in Black series by Shannon Hale and Dean Hale and God’s Dream by Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Douglas Carlton Abrams. She says, ” I marched in the first Women’s March in Atlanta in 2017, but I carried no sign. This book is the sign I wish I’d had with me.” LeUyen Pham lives in California.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*This book was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.

 

A Children’s Book That Brings Out Your Inner Artist

Make Your Mark Gallery: A Coloring Book-ish will let your inner artist shine through as they can express their art through the beautiful pages in this children’s book.” – Momma Braga

About the Book

Draw. Frame. Share! With pages of possibilities, the creator of The Dot inspires us to make our mark and see where it takes us.

Do you have a crayon or marker ready? Children’s book creator Peter H. Reynolds has motivated kids of all ages, in homes and classrooms, to escape their inner critics and let the artist inside of them out to play. Now, with¬†Make Your Mark Gallery,¬†the celebrated author-illustrator offers more inspiration with a coloring book-ish featuring frames of all kinds just waiting to be filled with original art. Readers can follow ish-full suggestions or let inspiration guide their artistic vision, then tear out their creations along a perforated edge to proudly display their work or give it to someone special.

#MelAndNikkiReview

Make Your Mark Gallery: A Coloring Book-ish¬†is an amazing children’s book that embraces your inner artist. This is absolutely the perfect book for our family as Nikki loves being artistic. Each page provides a different frame that you can use to create your masterpiece. Once completed, your child can write their name, date and the name of the drawing.

Your child can give their photo to someone that they love or they can add their photo to their own art gallery. You can even be creative and do an art gallery opening where your child can display their artwork for all to see. We have started the process and we are hoping by Thanksgiving in October we can have “Nikki’s Art Gallery” ready to show our immediate family.

Therefore, for this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give this book¬†10 paint brushes out of 5!¬†Time to roll up your selves and get creative. Your child will love to explore the pages that await them. I wonder if I can sneak a page for my own design while Nikki isn’t looking?! ūüėČ

If you would like to purchase this great masterpiece, click here. It is perfect for children ages four to eight and let their inner creativity flow!

About the Author

Peter H. Reynolds¬†is the¬†New York Times¬†best-selling illustrator of the Judy Moody and Stink series, written by Megan McDonald. He is also the creator of several picture books for children, including¬†The Dot, Ish, Sky Color, The North Star, So Few of Me, Rose’s Garden, The Smallest Gift for Christmas,¬†and¬†Playing from the Heart.¬†The president and creative director of FableVision, Peter H. Reynolds was born in Canada and now lives in Dedham, Massachusetts.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*This book was provided in exchange of an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.

It’s Not A School Bus, It’s A Pirate Ship

“It’s Not A School Bus, It’s A Pirate Ship is a great adventure to get your imagination ready for a new school year.” – Momma Braga

Synopsis

A boy overcomes his first-day-of-school fears by imagining¬†It’s Not A School Bus, It’s A Pirate Ship!¬†Set sail on the high-seas with him in this picture book adventure by writer Mickey Rapkin and illustrator Teresa Martinez!

The first day of school means the first ride on the school bus. But who will I sit with? What if no one talks to me?

Luckily this isn’t a school bus, it’s a pirate ship!

And this crew has one motto: “One for all and all for FUN!” So set sail on a voyage across the high seas! And prepare to make some pirate buddies along the way in this adventure about overcoming your anxiety.

#MelAndNikkiReview

It’s Not A School Bus, It’s A Pirate Ship¬†is the great adventure that will get you ready for the school year.

The illustrations are vibrant and really bring the story to life. The storyline is full of imagination perfection and will help the little ones shake their school gitters away. Who would not want to travel to school in a pirate ship?! I know I would sign up for that! ūüôā

Therefore, for this #MelAndNikkiReview we give it¬†10 ARRRRRs out of 5!¬†A super cute children’s book that takes you on an imaginary pirate adventure. It also makes a great story for those who might be a little nervous to start the school year. We just love it!

If you would like to purchase this book, click here.

About the Author

Mickey Rapkin¬†is a journalist and screenwriter whose first book,¬†Pitch Perfect,¬†inspired the hit film series about cappella signing. Previously a senior editor at GQ, he is the author of¬†Theatre Geek and has written for the¬†The New York Times, ELLE, Bon Appetit,¬†and¬†National Geographic Traveler.¬†He lives in Los Angeles when he isn’t surfing the high seas, matey! He is the author of¬†It’s Not a Bed, It’s a Time Machine.

About the Illustrator

Teresa Martinez was born in Mexico. She was a very shy girl at school, and drawing helped her connect with other children. When she grew up she studied graphic design and started illustrating picture books. Now she lives in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, drawing for kids as she did during her school days, and that makes her happy.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*This book was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.

Llama Unleashes The Alpacalypse | Book Review

Llama Unleashes The Alpacalypse had has giggling throughout the story and with a very important lesson: never duplicate an alpaca (LOL)!” – Momma Braga

Synopsis

Llama loves cooking. And baking. And, above all, eating. For breakfast, Llama makes one epic spread…as well as a big mess. But Llama¬†hates cleaning. So by lunch, Llama has cooked up something really devious – an idea! – and by second lunch, Llama has cloned his most fastidious friend, Alpaca, to clean his house. And Llama doesn’t stop at just one clone. By dinner, the alpaca clones threaten to tidy the world into utter destruction – THE ALPACALYPSE* IS HERE! Will Llama be able to fix it all before dessert?

*That’s “apocalypse” with an alpaca – get it? ūüėČ

#MelAndNikkiReview

Llama Unleashes The Alpacalypse must be the funniest book we have read so far this year! It truly had us laughing out loud throughout. Just imagine the world filled with cleaning alpacas! Just the thought of that alone makes me giggle (lol).

The idea of making clones had me and Nikki talking about what we would want our clones to do in our place. I of course had a LONG list of tasks that I would be happy to pass onto my clone and Nikki just had one item on her list.¬†“I would make my clone do my bed! Everything else I can do myself!” – Nikki, Age 6

However, after reading this story, we know how much of a disaster it can be to have clones running around in the world. So we decided that we best just get use to do the items that we are not big fans of. We feel that by doing this, we are saving the world. ūüėČ We do admire the Llama’s creative idea to avoid his cleaning task but does he really learn his lesson on not duplicating?! You will have to read the story to find out. ūüėČ

For this #MelAndNikkiReview, Nikki says A Million Alpacas out of 5 (muahahaha)! We love the characters, the storyline and the vibrant illustrations. If you are looking for a book to just bring some smiles and joy into your home, then this is the one.

If you are interested in purchasing this great book for your reading line-up, click here.

About the Author

Jonathan Stutzman¬†is many things – a children’s author, a filmmaker, a Jonathan of science…but one thing Jonathan definitely is NOT is a Jonathan who likes cleaning up messes. Thankfully, most of his messes end up being stories, which he sends to his editor to clean up for him. Jonathan is a big fan of books, second dinner, and pizza.

About the Illustrator

Heather Fox is an illustrator and a picture maker. She loves gigantic breakfasts, does not like messes, and has a tendency to hide her snacks from unwanted snackers. One time, she invented a battery-operated automatic-spaghetti-twirler (a plastic fork glued to an electric hair braider).

Jonathan and Heather are married and live in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, with their Frenchie, Hugo. They are the creative team behind¬†Llama Destroys the World and¬†Don’t Feed the Coos and have many more silly stories on the way.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*This book was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.

You Are A Beautiful Beginning | Book Review

You Are a Beautiful Beginning gives children the ultimate confidence boost in story form that is captivating through words and illustrations. Perfection!” – Momma Braga

Synopsis

It is not the destination but the journey.

Inspired by this timeless adage, You Are a Beautiful Beginning combines lyrical storytelling and lovely art, blossoming into a celebration of self-love, friendship, and community. With delicate, evocative language and hidden depth, this meditative and magical picture book encourages readers old and young to discover their own endless potential.

#MelAndNikkiReview

You Are A Beautiful Beginning is a celebration of self-love, friendship and community that will appeal to readers of all ages.

The whimsical art will captivate everyone and the powerful message it brings out will be the ultimate confidence boost for a young person. Every story has a beginning and there really isn’t an end but a new beginning to the next story. It was simply a beautiful story

“It is not wishing to be different. It is learning to love being you. It is not the end of your story. It is a beautiful beginning, too.”

For this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give You Are A Beautiful Beginning 10 stars out of 5! A must read story with your little one and great story to have your young reader read it to you!

If you would like to purchase this lovely book, click here.

About the Author

Nina Laden¬†is an award-winning, bestselling children’s book author and illustrator. Her many books include¬†The Night I Followed the Dog, Peek-a Who?, When Pigasso Met Mootisse, Roberto: The Insect Architect, Once Upon a Memory, If I Had a Little Dream,¬†and¬†Yellow Kayak.¬†When she is not writing or drawing, she paddleboards, takes long beach walks, hunts for agates, forages for mushrooms, makes jewelry, and cooks up a storm, amongst other things. Nina was born and raised in the New York City area and now lives on a little island in the San Juan Islands of Washington State with her husband, Booth, and their Siberian cat, Marley.

About the Illustrator

Kelsey Garrity-Riley¬†is an illustrator living and working in Brooklyn, New York. She grew up in Germany and Belgium before moving to the US to pursue her love of art at the Savannah College of Art and Design. Kelsey’s picture books include¬†Goldie Takes a Stand: Golda Meir’s First Crusade, Other-Wordly, Born to Ride: A Story About Bicycle Face,¬†and¬†Frankie’s Favorite Food.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*This book was provided in exchange of an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.

 

Three Squeezes Gives Our Hearts All The Feels | Book Review

Three Squeezes¬†truly warms the heart as it reflects on the unbreakable bond between generations. A must read book for all generations and you may need a tissue.” – Momma Braga

Synopsis

When you could neither talk nor stand, life’s hourglass still filled with stand, I gently held your tiny hand and gave it three soft squeezes.

When you awoke within the night and cried from fear and called for light, I held you safe with all my might and gave you three long squeezes.

Follow a father and his son from babyhood to baseball games to graduation and beyond in this loving saga about the unbreakable bond between generations.

#MelAndNikkiReview

Three Squeezes truly gives us the full picture of parenthood in the most beautiful way.

As we follow the parent journey of one dad, we see the bond that he shares with his son. We see how a father’s love is there through it all by his symbolic use of squeezes. These heartfelt gestures is then returned from son to father as he ages. Simply beautiful and tugs at heart strings.

As I care for my daughter, I am also seeing my parents age. I can see the full circle that we go through in parenthood and this beautiful children’s book depicts. It is hard not to shed a tear by the end as we can all relate to the unconditional love a parent has for their child.

Therefore, for this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give¬†three squeezes 10 squeezes out of 5!¬†A children’s story that will tug at your heart strings and it will become a staple in a family’s home. A must read for all generations.

If you would like to purchase a copy of the book, click here.

About the Author

Jason Pratt¬†is a middle school teacher who grew up a short bike ride from the beach near Jacksonville, Florida, where he developed a habit of saying hello to everyone he passes on the street. When he is not writing or teaching, Jason can be found skiing, fishing, or paddling his kayak along Florida’s beautiful waterways. If you happen to see him there, please do say hello.

About the Illustrator

Chris Sheban has been awarded three gold and three silver medals by the Society of Illustrators. Some of the books he has illustrated are I Met a Dinosaur by Jan Wahl, Catching the Moon by Myla Goldberg, and What to Do with a Box by Jane Yolen. He also illustrated Someone Like Me by Patricia MacLachlan and The Other Ducks by Ellen Yeomans, both published by Roaring Book Press.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*Please note that this book was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.