Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Time to Plant your garden...

The Goodbye Cancer Garden
Janna Matthies
illustrator: Kristi Valiant

genre: picture book
pages: 32
rating: *****

I came across The Goodbye Cancer Garden while cruising the local library. I am so glad I did.

The Goodbye Cancer GardenThe Goodbye Cancer Garden is about a family who plants a garden after the mother is diagnosed with cancer.  It is a coping mechanism for the kids and away to count down to a time when she should be well.

I loved this book.  I have family members with cancer and have wondered how my kids would react to such news.  This is a great book for not only talking about cancer and its treatments, but also about hope.  It takes a difficult subject and handles it with care, and at the same time it is cheerful.

The illustrations are beautiful.  The family is bright and cheerful.  The kids are adorable.  Most importantly the mom rocks her bald head!

A truly uplifting book about a difficult subject.  A must read.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Fun Read....

Art & Max
David Wiesner

genre: children's picture book
pages: 40
rating: *****

Art & Max is a picture book.  It tells the story of two friends, that are also lizards.  Art is an artist and Max wants to paint, too.  Max paints Art, not a picture of Art, he paints Art.  What happens when Max tries to 'fix' Art?  Read the book.

Ok first let me say this book is laugh out loud funny.  The pictures are wonderful.  Each page has a simple sentence or two.  I loved this book.  What happens to Art is so unpredictable.  Then how Max tries to return him to normal is incredible.  I loved it.  I think I said that already.

Art & Max

Monday, March 19, 2012

New Fave....

Books Can Be Deceiving
Jenn McKinlay

genre: cozy
series: A Library Lover's Mystery
pages: 291 ( including project, guide, and recipe)
rating: ****

Books Can Be Deceiving, is the first in a new series.  Lindsey is the director of the Briar Creek Public Library.  The head of the children's department is an old friend of hers, Beth.  Beth has dreams of being a children's picture book author.  But a cranky boyfriend throws a monkey wrench into her plans.  It gets worse when he ends up dead and the police chief finds Beth as the best suspect.  Can Lindsey solve the case before Beth is thrown in jail, or worse she becomes the next victim?

I loved this book.  LOVED LOVED LOVED.  I have read one of McKinlay's other books, Buttercream Bump Off.  I like it, but I like this one more.  The characters are smart and witty.  There are a few sharp old ladies, too.  A naked artist and a handsome boat captain.  What more can you ask for?  Ok, the plot is really good and flows well.  It's a quick read, mainly because I just didn't want to put it down. 

For the record.  I love the library.  You can find me there, haunting the stacks at least once a week!

Great Book, get a copy today.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Happy 100th Birthday Girl Scouts...

Here Come the Girl Scouts
by. Shana Corey
Illustrated by. Hadley Hooper

genre: children's picture book
pages: 40 pages
rating ****

First, I must say I am a former Girl Scout and I am the mother of two Girl Scouts.  So I am biased!
Oh...I hope you have bought your cookies ;)

Here Comes the Girl Scouts, is a picture book about Juliette Gordon Low, the founder of the Girl Scouts.  Each page describes Julia and how she started the scouts.  Each page also carries a quote form the original handbook.

Here Come the Girl Scouts!: The Amazing All-True Story of  Juliette 'Daisy' Gordon Low and Her Great AdventureI loved this book.  The pictures are wonderful.  They show Juliette as she grows up and how she was different form most of the girls of the times.  Other pictures show Girl Scouts playing, camping, and having fun.  It shows the true purpose of the scouts, which is not to sell cookies, but to turn out brave, intelligent , socially minded women.  I get a kick out of pictures of the original badges, dairy maid.  I also really enjoyed reading the bio in the back of the book that goes into more detail of Juliette's live.

I highly recommend this book to grownups and kids alike.  If you think Girl Scouts are only about cookies, read the book.

That didn't last long....

Well, that job didn't last long!  No, I wasn't fired.  Let's just wasn't the right place for me and leave it at that!  On with the review.

Fiber & Brimstone
Laura Childs

genre: cozy
series: Scrapbook Mystery
pages: 322, with recipes
favorite quote: "Why is there always a crazy person loose in the French Quarter?"  (seriously!)
rating: ***

OK... I bought this book because I thought it took place during Mardi Gras and I was going to read it during Mardi Gras.  It's not, it takes place at Halloween!  But it is set in New Orleans!  This is the first Scrapbook Mystery I have read, I have read most of the Tea Shop Mysteries, same writer.

Basically, Fiber & Brimstone follows Carmela as she tries to solve the murder of Brett Fowler.  Carmela owns a scrapbook shop.  Her best friend, and sidekick, Ava owns a voodoo shop in the French Quarter.  The two meet interesting characters and explain New Orleans lifestyle and history as they try to solve the murder before they become the next victim.

Fiber & Brimstone (A Scrapbooking Mystery)I liked Fiber & Brimstone, not as much as the Tea Shop Mysteries.  Mainly, I liked it because it is full of interesting characters, including the city of New Orleans.  Trust me it is a character in the book, and in real life.  I live near New Orleans and have been there many times, so reading about the places I have been is a lot of fun.  New Orleans is crazy year round, and it's insane during Mardi Gras, now Halloween is not far behind!  Back to the book.  The story is faced paced and well written.  The plot is good, especially since we have recently had ponzi schemes in the news. 

If you want a fun read centered in a crazy city, give it a read.  My only real problem was the typos.  There were quite a few in the edition I read and it got annoying.

Happy reading