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Tuesday, March 13, 2018

The Science of Breakable Things Blog Tour (review)

The Science of Breakable Things 
By Tae Keller 
March 6, 2018 
Random House 
Source: from pub for review 

How do you grow a miracle?  

For the record, this is not the question Mr. Neely is looking for when he says everyone in class must answer an important question using the scientific method. But Natalie's botanist mother is suffering from depression, so this is The Question that's important to Natalie. When Mr. Neely suggests that she enter an egg drop competition, Natalie has hope.  

Eggs are breakable. Hope is not.  

Natalie has a secret plan for the prize money. She's going to fly her mother to see the Cobalt Blue Orchids--flowers that survive against impossible odds. The magical flowers are sure to inspire her mother to love life again. Because when parents are breakable, it's up to kids to save them, right? 

Seventh-grader, Natalie and her parents are dealing with a "situation". The "situation" being that Natalie's once happy, vibrant botanist mother has Depression. Confused, angry, and hurt Natalie thinks it's her job to "fix" her mother and she finds the solution when her science teacher encourages her to enter an egg drop competition. If she and her best friend, Twig, and new friend, Dari, can win the prize money, Natalie can take her mom to see the impossible and miraculous Colbalt Blue Orchids, which will hopefully bring back her mother's joy. 

Tae Keller's The Science of Breakable Things is a heartfelt and wonderfully crafted new middle-grade novel. Told through Natalie's honest and relatable perspective, The Science of Breakable Things feels very intimate, like having a long chat with an old friend. Keller's exploration of Depression and its effects on not only the one who has it, but those they love, is crafted with authenticity and great care. The Science of Breakable Things does not shy away from the often heart wrenching and painful emotions that families experience when dealing with mental illness. Young readers who have been in Natalie's shoes will find comfort in her story, and those who never have, will walk away with a bigger sense of compassion.  

I really love Natalie, as we have a lot in common (we're both ¼ Korean, we both have an awesome Korean grandma, we've both seen Depression up close and felt its unforgiving effects, and we both gravitate towards awesomely eclectic and quirky people)! Natalie, Twig, and Dari's friendship adds so much heart and humor to the story, and young readers will really love getting to know this trio. And Natalie's science teacher, Mr. Neely, with his enthusiasm and adorkable humor, is also a standout character. 

The Science of Breakable Things is a beautiful and important story full of heart, honesty, and humor. 

5/5 Cupcakes

TAE KELLER grew up in Honolulu, where she wrote stories, ate Spam musubisand participated in her school’s egg drop competition. (She did not win.) After graduating from Bryn Mawr College, she moved to New York City to work in publishing, and she now has a very stubborn Yorkie and a multitude of books as roommates.  

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Review: Adventures In Science- The Human Body from Silver Dolphin Books

Adventures in Science: The Human Body 
By Courtney Acampora 
December 12, 2017 
Silver Dolphin Books 

Which part of the brain is in charge of creativity? What is the smallest human muscle? Take a trip inside the human body and discover the amazing systems that allow us to move, breathe, and speak. After reading about everything from the digestive tract to the cornea, kids can assemble their own plastic skeleton and view the systems of the body in a layered cardstock model. With 20 fact cards, 2 sticker sheets, and a double-sided poster, this interactive kit is a perfect primer for learning about how the human body works. 


There's nothing more fascinating than our own human bodies...just ask any kid! Adventures in Science: The Human Body, from Silver Dolphin Books, is a superbly crafted, educational and fun activity set that introduces children to the wondrous human body. My four year old niece, Little A, loves learning about what goes on inside the human body and she has had such a great time with this set.

This interactive set includes an informative and engaging book that explores all the key parts of the human body, 20 fun fact cards, two sticker sheets and a double sided poster that kids can use to learn about and create their own body systems, and finally, kids can put their own plastic skeleton together. Created for children, the information provided is easily understood and accessible. 

I was amazed by just how much Little A was able to learn and understand from reading the book and playing with the fact cards, and how accurately she was able to place the body parts stickers on the poster by herself.

With Adventures in Science: The Human Body, hours of fun and expertly presented educational materials are combined to provide an awesome interactive experience for both kids and adults.



For nearly 20 years, Silver Dolphin Books has published award-winning activity, novelty, and educational nonfiction books for preschoolers to 12-year-olds. Our focus is to create books that engage and inspire children to learn more about the world around them while fostering a love of reading, exploration, and creative expression. From adorably-illustrated board books for toddlers, to interactive play and building sets, to sound books made for story time, we develop innovative books that both enlighten and entertain.

*I received a copy of this interactive set for review purposes

Monday, March 5, 2018

Fun New and Upcoming Picture Books

Today I have a fantastic list of new and upcoming picture books to share with y'all! Covering a wide range of topics, with wonderful stories, messages, and illustrations, Little A and I both loved each and every one of these books...

Don't Ever Look Behind Door 32
By B.C.R. Fegan
Illustrated by Lenny Wen 
March 14, 2018 

The magical Hotel of Hoo is a mysterious place with some very unusual occupants. As our guests explore the strange hotel, they are invited to experience everything it has to offer with just one warning… don’t ever look behind door 32. 

This imaginative picture book aims to take children beyond the first ten cardinal numbers, and introduces them to the patterns of counting in a fun and accessible way. With rooms to explore and unique objects to count, children will enjoy lingering on each page as they make their way closer to the forbidden door. 

Dear Girl,
By Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Paris Rosenthal 
Illustrated by Holly Hatam 
December 26, 2017 
Harper Collins 

The #1 New York Times bestseller that Today show co-anchor Hoda Kotb calls “a beautiful, beautiful book.” 

The New York Times bestselling author of I Wish You More , Amy Krouse Rosenthal, and her daughter Paris Rosenthal collaborate to bring you the heartwarming and inspiring Dear Girl,  

Dear Girl, is a remarkable love letter written for the special girl in your life; a gentle reminder that she’s powerful, strong, and holds a valuable place in the world. 

Through Amy and Paris’s charming text and Holly Hatam’s stunning illustrations, any girl reading this book will feel that she's great just the way she is—whether she enjoys jumping in a muddy puddle, has a face full of freckles, or dances on table tops. 
 Dear Girl, encourages girls to always be themselves and to love who they are—inside and out.  Dear Girl,  This book is for you.  Wonderful, smart, beautiful you.  If you ever need a reminder, just turn to any page in this book and know that you are special and you are loved.  Amy and Paris  A perfect gift for all occasions. 

Drawn From Natur
By Helen Ahpornsir
March 13, 2018 
Candlewick Press

An intricately crafted journey through four seasons of flora and fauna 

Helen Ahpornsiri’s intricate artwork transforms leaves, petals, and seeds into bounding hares, swooping swallows, and blossoming trees. Using nothing but pressed plants, this journey through the seasons captures the wonder and magic of the natural world between the pages of a book. This standout title with beautiful nonfiction text will take readers through an extraordinary year in the wild. 

I Love Cats! 
By Sue Staintin and Bob Staake 
December 26, 2017 
Harper Collins 

Cat lovers of all ages will revel in this delightful ode to feline friends! 

By bestselling author-illustrator duo Sue Stainton and Bob Staake, this companion to the wildly popular I Love Dogs! is full of hairy cats and scaredy cats, dancing cats and prancing cats—all of them ready to steal your heart through vibrant illustrations and energetic text. 

When the World Is Full of Friends
By Gillian Shields 
Illustrated by Anna Currey 
February 20, 2018 

When the world  
is full of friends, 
the fun and laughter 
never ends. 

Albert, Tom, Flossie, and Pipkin love to play. And while they have fun inventing games together, their biggest wish is to have friends to share them with. One day, something magical happens. A family of squirrels moves in across the stream! They could be the perfect friends--but how will they cross the stream? 
 With a little help from Father Rabbit, Albert, Tom, Flossie, and Pipkin will discover just how wonderful it is when the world is full of friends. This touching story from the revered team behind When the World Is Ready for Bed and When the World Was Waiting for You will warm the hearts of readers young and old. 

Piggy: Let's Be Friends! 
By Trevor Lai 
February 27, 2018 

Piggy loves reading books, having tea parties, and most of all, making new friends! One day he sees a little mole across his garden. Before Piggy can get to know him, the mole hides underground. 

Miles loves reading books and baking cakes, and he would love to have a friend! But the world above makes him so nervous . . . Can Piggy find a way to help Miles out of his shell? 

This sweet story of friendship from big-hearted Piggy continues the series that is perfect for fans of Salina Yoon and Dan Santat. 

This Story Is For You
By Greg Pizzoli 
April 3, 2018 

A simple "It's nice to know you" holds so much power in this tender picturebook by acclaimed author-illustrator Greg Pizzoli. Finding value in others as a matter of course, the narrator accepts and appreciates difference as the foundation of a life-long friendship. This Story Is for You celebrates moments of kindness throughout, from the small to the grand in a heartwarming tale of human connection. 

The warm, comforting text shares the tone of a Ruth Krauss classic and is balanced by Greg's energetic color palette and signature visual humor. This book is sure to be a special read for parents, children, and their friends for years to come. 

Watch Out For Muddy Puddles! 
By Ben Faulks 
Illustrated by Ben Cort 
March 13, 2018 

Watch out for muddy puddles! 
Because you never really know ...  
what there might be lurking  
down in the depths below. 

Have you ever thought about what could be in the world below the surface of puddles? Join in as one boy finds that some are very, very deep; some are teeming with particularly peckish crocodiles – eek! – and some icy puddles hurt your bottom when you slip – ouch! Others are full of frogs, underwater kings, lost socks and – WATCH OUT! – the BIG, BAD duck ... 
 A joyous celebration of the imagination and splashing in puddles with the talents of the bestselling illustrator of Aliens Love Underpants. 

Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Car
By Kate Dopirak 
Illustrated by Mary Peterson 
February 13, 2018 
Simon & Schuster 

A little red car beeps good night to all of his four-wheeled friends in this fresh take on the classic song, “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.” 

Twinkle, twinkle, little car,
how you love to travel far. 
Now it’s time to go to bed. 
But you want to drive instead. 

It’s time for Little Car to go to sleep, but he isn’t tired yet! So he cruises around town saying goodnight to all of his friends, from the tractors in their shed to the buses and taxis in town to the cranes and diggers at the construction siteFinally exhausted, Little Car putt-putts home where at last his beep-beep dreams begin. 

When Paul Met Artie: The Story of Simon & Garfunkel
By G. Neri 
Illustrated by David Litchfield 
March 20, 2018 
Candlewick Press 

From childhood friendship to brief teenage stardom, from early failures to musical greatness — the incredible story of how Simon & Garfunkel became a cherished voice of their generation. 

Long before they became one of the most beloved and successful duos of all time, Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel were just two kids growing up in Queens, New York — best friends who met in a sixth-grade production of Alice in Wonderland and bonded over girls, baseball, and rock ’n’ roll. As teens, they practiced singing into a tape recorder, building harmonies that blended their now-famous voices until they sounded just right. They wrote songs together, pursued big-time music producers, and dreamed of becoming stars, never imagining how far their music would take them. Against a backdrop of street-corner doo-wop gangs, the electrifying beginnings of rock ’n’ roll, and the rise of the counterculture folk music scene, G. Neri and David Litchfield chronicle the path that led two young boys from Queens to teenage stardom and back to obscurity, before finding their own true voices and captivating the world with their talent. Back matter includes an afterword, a discography, a bibliography, and a fascinating list of song influences. 

Black Bird Yellow Sun 
By Steve Light 
March 6, 2018 
Candlewick Press 

From the creator of Have You Seen My Dragon? comes an exploration of color that truly soars. 

As a solitary black bird wings its way through the day, little ones are treated to a magnificent flight from one vibrant color to another. Inimitable illustrator Steve Light showcases a new style in this board book for the youngest readers. Children can journey with the graceful black bird and its tiny worm friend past orange leaves, through green grass, onto gray rocks, under pink flowers, and more before coming to rest beneath a brilliant blue moon. 

I'm A Duck 
By Eve Bunting 
Illustrated by Will Hillenbrand 
March 13, 2018 
Candlewick Press 

Sometimes it takes a lot to get your webbed feet wet! An adorable picture book makes a splash with a satisfying story about conquering your fears. 

I cannot swim, and that is bad. 
A landlocked duck is very sad.  

One day, an egg rolled out of a nest and right into a deep pond. Now that egg is a little duck, and the water is still very scary. Jumping into the pond at all seems impossible, never mind swimming in a line with all his brothers. "You're a duck, and ducks don't sink," Big Frog points out. Practicing in a puddle helps a little, while backrubs and snacks from his mother help a little more. Big Frog offers to hold his friend's wing and dive in together, but our little duck knows that some challenges need to be faced alone. Even when they are very scary! 

The Tiptoeing Tiger
By Phillipa Leathers 
February 6, 2018 
Candlewick Press 

Every child who has ever crept up behind someone and shouted "roar!" will enjoy this utterly adorable story with a gentle final twist. 

Everyone knows that tigers are sleek, silent, and totally terrifying . . . most tigers, that is. But no one is afraid of Little Tiger. He's just too small and clumsy to frighten anyone. Determined to prove that he is terrifying, Little Tiger sets out on tiptoe, creeping through the forest to find someone to scare. He gets yawned at and laughed at, but Little Tiger won't give up. Is there any animal in the forest who will find him just as sleek, silent, and totally terrifying as the bigger tigers? 

*I received copies of the titles above for review and feature purposes.