Easter Basket Books & Trinkets

EASTER_BASKET_

 

Kid Lit Blog Hop

Easter is nearly here this year (although, the weather hasn’t quite caught up yet!), and many parents are preparing for the visit from the Easter bunny.  While Easter is certainly a religious holiday, first and foremost, my family always gave us Easter baskets before church, so that is a tradition I plan to carry on with my children.  However, our children’s baskets will be simple without fuss or (too much) candy.

Here are a few book options for Easter baskets along with several fun trinkets my son will be receiving! I love the idea of introducing the Tales of Peter Rabbit at Easter or Duck & Goose is always a sweet board book tale.  What is Easter? is a wonderful book about the true meaning of Easter in simple language for toddlers.

Marshmallow

The Country Bunny and the Little Gold Shoes (Sandpiper Books)

What Is Easter?

Duck & Goose, Here Comes the Easter Bunny!

The Tale of Peter Rabbit

Here are a few fun toys and trinkets we’re including in our son’s Easter basket:

 Weebles  Lamb and Chick // Melissa & Doug Farm  Chunky Puzzle // Zubels Bunny Boy Collin 

My First Easter Basket – Baby Gund

Maisy and the Missing Mice: Book Blast & Giveaway

About the Book

Maisy and the Missing MiceTitle: Maisy and the Missing Mice (The Maisy Files) | Author: Elizabeth Woodrum | Publication Date: September 24, 2013 | Publisher: Independent | Pages: 75 | Recommended Ages: 6 to 10

Summary: Maisy Sawyer is not your average fourth grade student. She is a detective with a special skill for solving mysteries. She loves black and white mystery movies, cherry lollipops, and her dog, Reesie. When a thief known as The Black Boot steals the school’s mascots and her lollipops, Maisy sets out to solve the case. Can she help return the mice to their home in the science lab? Will she ever see her beloved lollipops again? Find out in the first book in The Maisy Files series.

 REVIEW:

When I was a child, Inspector Gadget, Clue, and Nancy Drew were all a part of my reading and viewing excitement.  Mystery books for intermediate readers are always fun and a great way to engage even less motivated readers. Maisy gets fees for her detective services in lollipops, cherry only.  This detail tickled me as a reader but also because my childhood requests would be cherry Jolly Ranchers, only.  Furthermore, the plot is fun and great for child readers as they guess the clues. I would certainly encourage many readers to pick up this delightful mystery!

 

Book Trailer

 

Purchase

Amazon | Createspace

* NOTE: Available for only 99 cents through Amazon. OR, you can receive 15% off the regular price of the print version of Maisy and the Missing Mice by visiting https://www.createspace.com/4368649 in the month of March and entering the code RXJN6DUZ upon checking out.

 

The Buzz

“Woodrum certainly knows her target audience and does a very nice job with the character development of Maisy. This is an incredibly kid-friendly story that makes a great introduction to the genre of mystery for newly independent readers. It’s a quick page turning read that encourages kids to think outside of the box.” ~ The Children’s Book Review

“My name is Kat. I am 9 years old. I would rate this a five because I like everything about it, the mystery the most. It was fun to read. My favorite part was the mystery and the end. I love this book so much. I think other kids would love it too because it has mystery and most kids would like mystery books. Most mystery books have a good mystery. I would love to read the whole series.” ~ 5 Star Review, Heather A., Amazon

“I knew I would love this book simply because I knew it would remind me of the mystery books I read in my childhood. I really love how much trust the teachers and community as a whole put in Maisy. She is well deserving of their admiration as the way she finds clues and finds the mascot for the school is well thought out. This is a story any child would love to read. I hope Maisy continues to solve mysteries…” ~ 5 Star Review, Josh, Amazon

 

About the Author: Elizabeth Woodrum

Elizabeth Woodrum

Elizabeth Woodrum

Elizabeth Woodrum is an elementary teacher in Ohio. She came to love writing when she was in elementary school, but more recently began writing material for use in her classroom. From that writing, grew the desire to write books for the general population of children and adults alike. The Maisy Files, a children’s series, is the first series that she has published. The series currently has one book, Maisy and the Missing Mice. Elizabeth plans to add more books to the series, and would also like to publish books for adults in the future.

As a reader, Elizabeth prefers the fantasy genre, but she enjoys realistic fiction as well. Some of her favorite authors include JK Rowling, Stephenie Meyer, Rick Riordan, Veronica Roth, Suzanne Collins, and Nicholas Sparks. Originally from Indiana, Elizabeth currently resides near Dayton, Ohio with her two pets: a cat named Butterscotch and a dog named Reese Cup.

Book Website | Author Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Pinterest

 

* $25 Book Blast Giveaway *

Amazon 25 gift card

Prize: $25 Amazon Gift Card or PayPal cash (winner’s choice)

Contest ends: April 18, 11:59 pm, 2014

Open: Internationally

How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.

Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author, Elizabeth Woodrum and is hosted and managed by Renee from Mother Daughter Book Reviews. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send and email to Renee(at)MotherDaughterBookReviews(dot)com.

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Books that Blossom Young Readers

Blossom Readers

Recently, my writing students worked on a Literacy Narrative project (more assignment details coming – they were fascinating!).  In the project, we discussed books that these young college freshman remembered from his or her childhood.  Out of 100 students, many of the same titles came up over and over as favorites.  As a childhood literature fan, I was fascinated to hear the titles of books that actually stay with children through adulthood.

Dr. Seuss & Green Eggs & Ham

[A clear majority of my students grew up with Dr. Seuss, either in their home or classroom.  The rhymes and wacky cartoons must've made quite an impact as it was easily many students early listening experience.]

Love You Forever

[Munsch's picture book was another favorite of many of my students.  For many, this early literacy experience brought back memories of parents, bedtime, and reading with a parent.  The repetition of this sweet story seems to have as much of an impact on children and adults.]

An extraordinarily different story by Robert Munsch is a gentle affirmation of the love a parent feels for their child–forever. Sheila McGraw’s soft and colorful pastels perfectly complement the sentiment of the book–one that will be read repeatedly for years.

Junie B. Jones

[This series, according to my students, taught a generation how to read and how to love to read.  Despite my lack of familiarity with Junie B., I was astounded as to what an impact this series made on my own students' literacy experience. Perhaps, the analogy I've been thinking of is how many readers of my generation loved Ramona by Beverly Cleary. After this project, I'd recommend this series for any beginning reader.]

Meet the World’s Funniest Kindergartner—Junie B. Jones!

Remember when it was scary to go to school? With over 50 million books in print, Barbara Park’s New York Times bestselling chapter book series, Junie B. Jones, is a classroom favorite and has been keeping kids laughing—and reading—for over 20 years! In the 1st Junie B. Jones book, it’s Junie B.’s first day and she doesn’t know anything. She’s so scared of the school bus and the meanies on it that when it’s time to go home, she doesn’t. 

The Magic Tree House

[Similiar to the Junie B. series, The Magic Tree House series has been helping young readers improve their reading skills along with being excited to read more adventures.  This series grew along with the young readers as they read longer chapter books, and the readers loved the adventure of this series. Again, I would recommend this series to reluctant, struggling, or disinterested readers  - along with those readers looking for an exciting series!]

Jack and Annie are ready for their next fantasy adventure in the bestselling middle-grade series—the Magic Tree House! Where did the tree house come from? Before Jack and Annie can find out, the mysterious tree house whisks them to the prehistoric past. Now they have to figure out how to get home. Can they do it before dark . . . or will they become a dinosaur’s dinner?

Harry Potter

[It's quite easy for us book lovers to take for granted what an huge impact this series had on young children who may or may not have had an interest in picking up a piece of fiction. J.K. Rowling did truly inspire a generation of readers, and for that, I was reminded during this project.  I imagine we'll be studying, discussing, reading, and enjoying Harry Potter for decades to come.]

Tell us what books or series helped you or your children become readers?

Excerpts and Covers via Goodreads

Heidi: An Alpine Classic

After an unintended long hiatus from Tales of a Bookworm, I’m back to share some great books I’ve been reading!

Heidi is a book that’s been published in over 60 languages, that is a beloved classic, and that was written in 1880.  In my childhood, I very much enjoyed the outdoor Alpine lifestyle Heidi was able to live.  Rereading it as an adult has been just as, or even more so, enjoyable.

As an orphan, Heidi is given to her grandfather, who is known in their small Alpine town in Switzerland as the curmudgeonly goat herder.  Heidi looks through life with a rosy hued lens; and thus, she won over her grumpy grandfather.  Together, they lived a simple lifestyle of steep, green mountains herding goats.  Peter, who is not quite taken with Heidi, is a local young goat herder, with whom Heidi loves to follow.  Peter, Heidi, and her grandfather enjoy their somewhat isolated life with goats, fresh milk, and fresh air.

Then, through a series of events, Heidi is sent to the city of Frankfurt as a companion to a wealthy, sick girl named Clara.  While Clara and Heidi become the closest of friends, Heidi’s spirit seems to wither away without the fresh mountain air.  Much of the book leaves the reader wondering if she will ever get back to her beloved mountains and grandfather.

Spyri’s descriptions  of the Swiss mountains will make any reader want to hike up a steep hill and yodel for joy.  The author also describes the fresh milk, bread, and cheese in such a way that makes the reader hungry for Swiss food.  Furthermore, her characters and their interactions work to keep the reader interested in the plot.

While the book may seem sappy or overly sweet to a modern reader, it’s important to suspend that sense of disbelief to fall into Heidi’s world.  It’s a classic book for it’s true escapism to another place, another time, and a happy ending.

Dragon Defender Blog Tour

Dragon Defender - Blog Tour Button  J.A. Blackburn

About the Book

Title: Dragon Defender (Dragon Defense League, Book #1)

Author: J.A. Blackburn

Publication Date: October 19, 2013

Publisher: Pip & Grey

Number of pages: 242

Recommended age: 10+

Summary (Amazon):

For over a thousand years dragons have existed in secret . . .

Peter Clark can build a robot from scratch and pick a lock in two minutes or less. But he can’t figure out why his mother left or why his grandma refuses to talk about her. When Uncle Dominick shows up on Peter’s twelfth birthday with a letter that hints at answers and an incredible story about dragons, Peter follows him, determined to find out the truth about his mother’s disappearance.

What he finds is a reality far different from what he ever could have imagined – where dragons live in hiding, hunted by poachers for their magical parts, and a small group of men and women work tirelessly to protect them. These are the Dragon Defenders. Peter’s uncle is one. So was his mother. Now it’s Peter’s turn.

* Finalist in the Pacific Northwest Writers Association 2013 Literary Contest *

 Review:

Authors work diligently to create the best first sentence or opening paragraph of a book, and Blackburn has certainly created a book that easily brings the reader into her world. Furthermore, writers who can create worlds in which to escape must use detail and description, like ’87 Pontiac.

Peter begins the book with a new discovery about him, via a letter from his mother which is delivered by his uncle Dominick.  Peter learns, on his 12th birthday, that he’s a member of DDL and comes from a long line of Dragon Defenders.

Peter and the plot develop as he goes to Mexico for a his first DDl mis-adventure adventure where the reader sees Peter follow through his DDL heritage. This novel isn’t just “action-packed,” but it’s a well written experience with a world of Dragon Defenders where Peter learns how to rely on himself to become a protector. Also,  not only is Peter a well developed main character but also the secondary  characters are well developed and integrated into the plot.  I really enjoy middle age literature, and Dragon Defender is a really excellent reader. I can only imagine how young readers, especially those who enjoy adventure, dragons, and history, would fly right through this novel.  I highly recommend – this is a great read!

More Buzz About the Book

“We read an advance copy of this book on kindle earlier this year and our 5th grade son read it twice and is anxiously awaiting the next book in the series. Great adventure, really kept our interest reading it together at night. This was one of the kids books I most enjoyed reading myself as well. The characters and the plot are well developed, and appealing to a wide range of kids (both genders). The writing is sophisticated but easy to understand, not ‘dumbed down’ like many kids books. The subject of dragons was so well crafted that it’s easy believe that dragons just might exist, after all.” ~ 5 Star Review, Leigh A., Amazon

“Reminiscent of the Fablehaven series (with just the right touch of Harry P.) this middle grade book is both an adventure and a pleasure…Fast-paced and full of wonder, this book takes middle grade readers on a vivid journey from the southwestern U.S. to Mexico; where jungles, ancient ruins and local folklore add to the enchantment that Peter finds when he discovers that dragons are in fact, real. As a former elementary school teacher, my strong feeling is that kids will eat this book whole, and then turn to searching for dragon eggs in their own backyards!” ~ 5 Star Review, Grace W., Amazon

“Dragon Defender was an absorbing action packed read! The author pulls you in from the first page and I’m not sorry to say I read it all in the first day. I’m 33 but still! This is a fun book for a chapter a night with your 5 year old (my son is loving it so far) or for yourself. The characters are well developed so you feel like you’re really there, and the dragon is so believable. I’d venture so far as to say I had to remind myself that dragons don’t really exist…. or do they?” ~ 5 Star Review, MGC, Amazon

 

Purchase

Dragon Defender by J.A. Blackburn

Amazon (Print) | Amazon (Kindle)

 

About the Author: J.A. Blackburn

J.A. Blackburn, Author

J.A. Blackburn

 

J. A. Blackburn lives in Seattle, Washington in a small white house overlooking the sea with her husband, Jason, her son, Camden, and their dog, Bella. Dragon Defender is her first novel.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

 

 

 

Dragon Defender Blog Tour Schedule (2014)

January 6

Mother Daughter Book Reviews (Launch & Review)

Victoria Simcox (Interview)

January 7

The Dragyn’s Lair (Dual Reviews)

Cherry Mischievous (Guest Post)

January 8

Reading and Sharing (Book Review)

January 9

Brooke Blogs (Review)

Carpinello’s Writing Pages (Author Interview)

January 10

The World of ContestPatti (Author Interview)

Bound 4 Escape (Review)

January 11

Deal Sharing Aunt (Review)

January 12

Mythical Books (Guest Post)

Book Room Reviews (Review)

January 13

The Hippie Bookworm (Review)

Books Direct (Author Interview)

January 14

BeachBoundBooks (Review)

January 15

A Year of Jubilee Reviews (Review)

January 16

Reviews By Karen (Review)

Stitch Says (Author Interview)

January 17

We are the Noisy DinoFamily (Review)

Musings by Jay Faulkner (Guest Post)

January 18

Kay LaLone I Love Books (Review)

January 19

Lakshmi Gosyne (Guest Post & Review)

January 20

Sher A. Hart: Written Art (Review)

WS Momma Readers Nook (Guest Post/Excerpt)

January 21

Mel’s Shelves (Review)

January 22

Cassandra Lost in Books (Review)

Word Magic: Articles & Tips for Authors (Review)

January 23

Tales of a Bookworm (Review)

January 24

Dawn’s Disaster (Review)

Identity Discovery (Guest Post)

January 25

Jemima Pett, Princelings Author (Review)

January 26

When I Grow Up I Wanna Write a Kids Book (Review)

Heart of a Philanthropist (Review)

 

* $50 Blog Tour Giveaway *

Amazon $50 Gift Card

Prize: $50 Amazon Gift Card or PayPal cash (winner’s choice)

Contest runs: January 6th to January 31, 11:59 pm, 2014

Open: Internationally

How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.

Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author, J.A. Blackburn and is hosted and managed by Renee from Mother Daughter Book Reviews. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send and email to Renee(at)MotherDaughterBookReviews(dot)com.

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MDBR Book Promotion Services