Tuesday, July 26, 2016

A Clever Example of Healthy Living

Author: Regan W.H. Macaulay
Illustrator: Alex Zgud
Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing
Published: May 2016
Hardcover ISBN: 9781616337612
Paperback ISBN: 9781616337629
eBook ISBN: 9781616337636

In SLOTH THE LAZY DRAGON, Regan W. H. Macaulay addresses the importance of diet, exercise and living a healthy lifestyle in a very clever way.    Children will gain a wonderful example of the universal importance of kindness and helping others as well as dedication as Sloth’s transformation takes three years of hard teamwork.

This story shows the evolution of Sloth, an apt name for a fat and weak dragon living in the bowels of a mountain on a mound of gold and jewels, as he transforms into a fit and strong dragon able to have the energy needed to live an active and healthy lifestyle, compliments of the help of a brave dwarf named Radish, also a clever name for one offering lifestyle advice.

Radish offers to help Sloth and does so by presenting him with many new food and exercise options in his quest to aid the dragon in lightening his “girth” in order to fly and live a healthy lifestyle.  Children will enjoy developing an awareness of new healthy food choices as Radish brings Sloth items like nuts, fruits, vegetables, pumpkin, legumes, fish and lean meat.

Ms. Zgud’s beautiful illustrations have a whimsical feel that children will love and really bring to life Sloth’s transformation from a fat and weak (Sloth) dragon into a fit and strong dragon ready to fly and see the world beyond the confines of the mountain.

SLOTH THE LAZY DRAGON is highly recommended for children ages 4-7 and offers a clever way for parents to address the importance of diet, exercise and living a healthy lifestyle and will foster excitement in children to try new and different food items as Sloth did.

Author information can be found at http://reganwhmacaulay.weebly.com

Illustrator information can be found at http://www.tripletake.net/?team=alex-zgud

** Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book free of charge from the author in exchange for an honest review.  This review consists of my truthful opinions, not influenced in any way by the author or publisher.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Read All About It...

Calling all picture book writers!

October 1, 2016 is the date of Picture Book Summit 2016.  Jane Yolen, Matt de la Pena and Paul O. Zelinsky headline...need I say more???

I participated in the 2015 PB Summit and can't wait for 2016.  It is a one day event with interviews, workshops and agent & editor panels.  Replays are available if unable to attend live.

Learn more and/or register at http://picturebooksummit.com.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Independence Day

Happy 4th of July! Thank you to all who have served and those who continue to do so to ensure our safety and freedom in this great land.  You are so very appreciated!

Enjoy your 4th of July festivities and be safe whether traveling or on the home front.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Launch Day

Author: Tracey M. Cox
Illustrator: Tracey M. Cox
Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing
Published: June 2016
Print ISBN: 9781616337711
eBook ISBN: 9781616337728

Bubble gum, bubble gum in a dish. How many pieces do you wish? So begins a delightful children’s picture book for young ones written and illustrated by Tracey M. Cox. Ms. Cox draws on the nostalgia of childhood with her catchy title and often used phrasing of kids everywhere.

Children will enjoy and learn from Ms. Cox’s use of repetition, alliteration and rhyming and will also be encouraged to be open and accepting of cultural diversity through her beautifully illustrated characters. 

BUBBLE GUM, BUBBLE GUM IN A DISH teaches about color and counting concepts as the story builds from one piece of bubble gum to ten pieces exploding in a final pink “pop!”  Ms. Cox’s colorful and bright illustrations are a perfect complement to her text.

This verbally and visually pleasing and fun story brings back memories of childhood, and kids and parents will enjoy reading it time and again while learning how to count to 10 and identify basic colors.  A must read!

For more information, visit Tracey's website at http://www.traceymcox.com  

** Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book free of charge from the author/illustrator in exchange for an honest review.  This review consists of my truthful opinions, not influenced in any way by the author or publisher.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

A Must Read Story About Selective Mutism

Authors: Joni Klein-Higger & Flora Zaken-Greenberg, Ph.D.
Illustrator: Eileen Goldenberg
Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing
Published: January 2016
Print ISBN: 9781611337285
eBook ISBN: 9781616337292

I HAVE A VOICE is a wonderful children’s picture book which fills an important void in the information available regarding Selective Mutism and gives a voice to all those struggling to do so themselves.  I HAVE A VOICE explores the life of a child, Jamie, who suffers from Selective Mutism, an anxiety disorder characterized by difficulty speaking in social situations.

Joni Klein-Higger and Flora Zaken-Greenberg use simple and easily relatable language to explain Jamie’s life and feelings as she struggles with her fear to speak and works with her “feelings” doctor in preparation for the start of Kindergarten.  This is a terrific book that parents can use to help kids understand when “talking is scary,” either for themselves or others they know.

Ms. Goldenberg’s wonderful illustrations are bright and vivid and really bring Jamie’s story to life.

I applaud Ms. Klein-Higger and Dr. Zaken-Greenberg for their open and relatable story and giving a voice to those in need.  It will help many children, families, teachers and others who suffer from, or know others suffering from, Selective Mutism.  I look forward to using and recommending this book in my Speech/Language Pathology practice.  Well done!

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book free of charge from the author in exchange for an honest review.  This review consists of my honest opinions, not influenced in any way by the author or publisher.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Renewed Energy

Last weekend was our regional SCBWI Dakotas conference.  Terrific speakers, networking with other authors and illustrators from our region and hearing from others about their writing lives has brought renewed energy and focus to my own writing life.  I'm excited to embark on the edits necessary with my current WIPs as well as start the new stories rolling around in my brain begging to be written.

I have seen this wonderful quote before but saw it again recently post-conference.  It just re-affirmed why I do what I do.  As many of you know, many believe writing for kids is a piece of cake because it can't possibly be hard to write such short books for kids.  HA! As many of you also know, it is very hard to write tight, short books that kids will love to read over and over again and parents will agree to read to kids over and over again.  That is why reading quotes like Ms. L'Engle's is always so affirming.

I would love to hear your stories about those you've encountered who think writing for kids is something anyone can do and how you handle those sentiments when they do arise should you be willing to share.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Summer Reading Fun

I am excited to announce that Bedtime Kisses is part of the SCBWI Summer Reading List in the West division.  There are over 1400 titles from 350 publishers for your summer reading pleasure.  If you are a member of SCBWI, you can find the list at http://www.scbwi.org/list-of-pal-publishers/.


While you are reading, I will be a bit MIA from this blog, and I apologize.  I will be checking in from time to time over the next couple weeks but am wrapping up our school year (and thus my work year), my daughter is graduating from high school this weekend and we are heading out on a family vacation shortly thereafter; therefore, I am firmly in Mom mode right now.  I will return with my author hat back in place mid-June and will be posting on a much more regular schedule thereafter.

Enjoy the beginning of summer and happy reading and writing.  May creativity and good fortune be yours!