Quantcast

Mailbox Monday #598

Mailbox Monday has become a tradition in the blogging world, and many of us thank Marcia of The Printed Page for creating it.

It now has it’s own blog where book bloggers can link up their own mailbox posts and share which books they bought or which they received for review from publishers, authors, and more.

Leslie, Martha, and I also will share our picks from everyone’s links in the new feature Books that Caught Our Eye. We hope you’ll join us.

Here’s what we received:

National Geographic Beginner’s United States Atlas

This fun, easy-to-use atlas takes kids on a journey around the U.S. to showcase what’s unique about each state and territory. Every profile starts with a colorful map and a lively essay and includes capital cities; population; important land and water features; state birds, flowers, and flags; and more. It’s all packaged in a bigger format, with a refreshed design, and bold, bright photos and illustrations.

National Geographic–known for its authoritative data, expert cartography, and beautiful photography–is the number one provider of atlases for people of all ages.

National Geographic United States Atlas 2020 edition

Kids will have fun learning about each and every U.S. state in this amazing 6th edition atlas, packed with maps, stats, facts, and pictures. National Geographic’s world-renowned cartographers have paired up with education experts to create maps of all 50 states, U.S. territories, and Washington, D.C., that pinpoint the physical features, capitals, and other towns and cities. Discover the latest data along with colorful photography of each state and the people who live there. Key points reflect the latest information about land and water, people, and places. Lively essays cover each region of the country. Eight specially themed maps on nature, population, economy, energy, climate, and more delve deeper into key issues. State birds and state flags add to the high visual interest. This is a great reference for home and school with all the basics kids need to know to succeed in middle school, high school, and beyond.

National Geographic Little Kids First Big Book of Science

Make sure kids’ first experience of the wonders of science is a thrilling eye-opener with this fun reference book. Fun activities, games, and simple experiments encourage interactive learning, showing kids that anyone can use scientific observation and experimentation to be a scientist and discover new things. With bright images and age-appropriate text, this book inspires kids to be curious, ask questions, and explore the world around them and maybe even grow up to be a scientist one day, too! Topics include astronomy, botany, paleontology, malacology (that’s the science of clams, snails, and other animals with shells!), zoology, and more.

National Geographic Kids 5,000 Awesome Facts

Presenting the next must-have, fun-filled gift book from the team that created Ultimate Weird But True, 5,000 Cool Facts About Everything treats kids to brain candy and eye candy all rolled into one treasure trove of high-interest fascinating facts.

Lively and information-packed, this book is literally busting its covers with fascinating, fun-tastic facts on super, sensational topics that kids love. Who knew that there were so many sweet things to learn about chocolate or that a dozen delicious details about peanut butter would show up on a page with a few splotches of jelly to whet our appetites? Keep turning and a terrifyingly toothy shark tells you all about himself, while other spreads lay out tons of tips on toys and games, mysteries of history, robots and reptiles, sports and spies, wacky words, and so much more! A visual feast of colorful photographs surrounded by swirling, tipping, expanding, and climbing bits of information in a high-energy design, this book will satisfy both the casual browser and the truly fact obsessed.

Izzy Newton and the S.M.A.R.T. Squad: Absolute Hero by Valerie Tripp

Science reigns supreme with this squad of young brainiacs. Join Izzy Newton and her friends in the first adventure of this fun new middle-grade fiction series from National Geographic Kids.

A crowded new school and a crazy class schedule is enough to make Izzy feel dizzy. It may be the first day of middle school, but as long as her best friends Allie Einstein and Charlie Darwin are by her side, Izzy knows it’ll all be okay. However, first-day jitters take an icy turn when Izzy’s old pal Marie Curie comes back to town. Instead of a warm welcome, Marie gives her former pal the cold shoulder. The problems pile up when the school’s air-conditioning goes on the fritz and the temperature suddenly drops to near freezing. The adults don’t seem to have a clue how to thaw out the school. Cold temperatures and a frigid friendship? Izzy has had enough of feeling like an absolute zero. She rallies the girls to use their brainpower and science smarts to tackle the school’s chilly mystery … and hopefully to fix a certain frozen friendship along the way. Will the girls succeed and become the heroes of Atom Middle School?

What did you receive?

The Engagement Gift by Lauren Blakely (audio)

Source: Audible freebie
Audiobook, 2+ hrs.
I am an Amazon Affiliate

The Engagement Gift by Laura Blakely, narrated by Elena Wolfe and Teddy Hamilton, is a short, erotic novella in which a young engaged woman debates in her head and with her friend whether she should ask her intended for a secret fantasy. Lily is adventurous in the bedroom and so is her fiance, Finn, but there’s one thing she struggles to ask her mate to do because it could ruin the intimacy they’ve created.

For me, this novella was steamy and erotic, but the characters felt a little flat and the relationship between Lily and Finn was one dimensional. I understood that they were hot for each other and obsessed with adventure in the bedroom, but it felt like that was all there was between these characters and for a marriage, I think you’d need more than that.

The Engagement Gift by Laura Blakely, narrated by Elena Wolfe and Teddy Hamilton, is a short read and I think that was part of the problem if you’re looking for character development. If you’re looking for a quick “romp in the hay,” however, this might be for you.

RATING: Epitaph

Mailbox Monday #597

Mailbox Monday has become a tradition in the blogging world, and many of us thank Marcia of The Printed Page for creating it.

It now has it’s own blog where book bloggers can link up their own mailbox posts and share which books they bought or which they received for review from publishers, authors, and more.

Leslie, Martha, and I also will share our picks from everyone’s links in the new feature Books that Caught Our Eye. We hope you’ll join us.

Here’s what we received:

Eunice and Kate by Mariana Llanos, illustrated by Elena Napoli from Penny Candy Books.

The girls live with their moms next door to each other in the heart of the city and have a lot in common―even though they have different dreams for the future: Kate wants to be an astronaut and Eunice wants to be a ballet dancer. But when they draw portraits of each other in art class, things get mixed up. Eunice draws Kate as a ballet dancer and Kate draws Eunice as an astronaut, and they both get more than a little annoyed. Can their friendship survive? With a little help from their moms, the girls come to learn the value of respecting each other’s different dreams. Eunice and Kate is a heartfelt new book by Mariana Llanos, illustrated by Elena Napoli, about how honoring our differences can strengthen our bonds.

Luca’s Bridge by Mariana Llanos, illustrated by Anna Lopez Real from Penny Candy Books.

Together in their car, Luca, his brother Paco, and their parents head across the border to Mexico where his parents were born. Luca doesn’t understand why he must leave the only home he’s ever known, his friends, and his school. He struggles through lonely and disorienting times―reflected both in Real’s delicate, symbolic illustrations and through Llanos’ description of his dreams―and leans on music, memory, and familial love for support. Luca’s Bridge / El puente de Luca is a story for everyone about immigration, deportation, home, and identity.

Trini’s Big Leap by Alexander de Wit and Beth Kephart, illustrated by William Sulit from Penny Candy Books.

She easily masters any gymnastic move her teachers show her, and always says, “I can do that.” But when she tries to construct buildings out of blocks like her friends do, she discovers that some things don’t come as easily for her. Through the encouragement of her friends, Trini learns the value of collaboration and trying new things, even when they aren’t so easy. An afterword by the founder and CEO of The Little Gym Europe, outlines why it’s important to encourage children to try new and difficult things.

The Yellow Suitcase by Meera Sriram, illustrated by Meera Sethi from Penny Candy Books.

When they arrive at her grandmother’s house, it’s filled with strangers―and no Grandma. Asha’s grief and anger are compounded by the empty yellow suitcase usually reserved for gifts to and from Grandma, but when she discovers a gift left behind just for her, Asha realizes that the memory of her grandmother will live on inside her, no matter where she lives.

Henry the Boy by Molly Felder, illustrated by Nate Christopherson and Tara Sweeney from Penny Candy Books.

This is not a story about a heron or a robot or a chicken but an ordinary boy with daily struggles, triumphs, and an extraordinary imagination. Henry uses forearm crutches decorated with animal stickers. He sometimes feels out of place at school, especially when he gets made fun of, but through his own rich imagination and his friendship with Joel, Henry learns to define himself on his own terms.

Everything I Own by Angela Just from Pork Belly Press.

These poems are about storytelling, things handed down and examined, from the gifts a mother might give to her daughter to the embrace of two Neolithic skeletons. This micro is intimate and brave—a little wicked, a bit bruised. Ultimately, Just’s poems are darn intriguing.

 

Sap Rising by Christine Lincoln, which I purchased.

In this spare and mesmerizing debut, Christine Lincoln takes us inside the hearts and minds of African Americans whose lives unfold against a vividly evoked rural community. As they navigate between old and new, between youth and responsibility, they find themselves choosing between the comforts of what they trust without question and the fearsome excitements of what they might come to know.

One young man’s world is both expanded and contracted by stories he hears from a beautiful stranger. Another stumbles across his mother having an affair with his uncle. An intense friendship forms between one woman afraid she will turn out like everyone else and one afraid she won’t. Lincoln’s down-to-earth voice, saturated with the manner and details of the South, brings her characters to life with a remarkably light touch and an extraordinary depth of emotion. In Sap Rising, she proves herself one of those writers whose work transcends its own rich particularity to speak with clarity to the most fundamental elements of the human experience.

What did you receive?

COVID Chronicle #1

Since the start of the pandemic and the lockdown in our state that began with sending kids home from school in March, I knew life would not be normal for a long time. I remember writing journal entries every day as a teenager and probably even before that, but I haven’t done any of that […]

Afterland by Mai Der Vang

Source: Purchased Paperback, 96 pgs. I am an Amazon Affiliate Afterland by Mai Der Vang, whom I was lucky enough to hear read at a virtual event for Pedestal Magazine, explores the after effects of the Secret War in Laos, during which the Hmong people became a surrogate army of the CIA. The war and […]

The Haunted Library: The Secret Room by Dori Hillestad Butler, Illustrated by Aurore Damant

Source: Purchased Paperback, 128 pgs. I am an Amazon Affiliate The Haunted Library: The Secret Room by Dori Hillestad Butler, illustrated by Aurore Damant, is another adventure in which Kaz must use his newly learned ghost skills to help Claire and his friends. Kaz finally learned how to pass through walls without feeling “skizzy” in […]

Mailbox Monday #596

Mailbox Monday has become a tradition in the blogging world, and many of us thank Marcia of The Printed Page for creating it. It now has it’s own blog where book bloggers can link up their own mailbox posts and share which books they bought or which they received for review from publishers, authors, and […]

Owl Diaries: Eva in the Spotlight by Rebecca Elliott

Source: Purchased Paperback, 80 pgs. I am an Amazon Affiliate Owl Diaries: Eva in the Spotlight by Rebecca Elliott, which is the 13th book in the series, and thrusts Eva into a new friendship role once again. Eva and Sue tend to clash on things, and when Sue is cast as the lead in Treetop […]