Thursday, 27 July 2017

The boy who painted the world

The Boy Who Painted the World
Author: Melody J Bremen

Hi Everyone

I was interested in the concept behind this book, so I put my hand up to receive a copy for review.  I think it is one of the best middle grade books I have read this year!

We start with a boy left to wait for his mum (who has a few issues).  She doesn't return.  Jade takes him under her wing and he soon thinks of her like a mother.  He spends his days doing odd jobs for lunch money and pencils then spends the rest of the day drawing in box behind Burger King, while he waits for Jade to finish her days work.  They make it through by living day by day.  That is until Jade is caught shoplifting and taken away.  Indigo is left to discover the world alone. 

I really enjoyed the reality and innocence of Indigo's character.  I wanted to wrap him up and take him home.  But someone else that... an artist.  Indigo is an artist too.  They connect in an amazing way and he decides to paint the world... you will need to read to find out what this involves.   The concept is brilliant.  The writing is engaging.  The characters are unique but real. 

I connected with most of the characters in this book and quickly became a part of Indio's world.

This really is worthy of any school library's shelves.


Indigo is a boy with a dream. He spends his mornings in a refrigerator box, his afternoons shoveling snow, and his nights in the basement of a homeless shelter. But during every free moment, he draws and dreams of becoming a famous artist. His best friend Jade looks after him, but she is arrested for shoplifting and he's left all alone. With his box of pencils under his arm, he sets out on a quest to search for Jade and discovers a whole new world... full of the art he loves. His journey brings him friendship, family, and the courage to hold onto his more

This was available from:Amazon, Book depository

Happy reading

Sunday, 23 July 2017

Badjelly the witch

Badjelly the Witch
Author: Spike Milligan
ISBN: 9780753556825

Badjelly The Witch: A Fairy Story

Hi Everyone

Flash back!   I was so excited this weekend when someone shared Badjelly the Witch to me on facebook 

Now where does this excitement come from?  Well, when I was a little girl... we listened to children stories every Sunday on the radio.  This was a tradition held by most of the children in my country.  Sunday morning story time!  It was the best.  My favourite was this story and Flick the Little Fire Engine. 

Oh the memories 😊

The story is now on my Facebook  page thanks to Good Old Days NZ.  Check it out.


Badjelly the Witch can turn children into sausages or chop them up to make boy-girl soup. She can turn policemen into apple trees or bananas into mice and she is the wickedest witch in all the world. Searching for Lucy, their cow, Tim and Rose become lost in the great black forest. There they meet Binklebonk the Tree Goblin, Mudwiggle the worm, Silly Sausage the grasshopper and Dinglemouse. When they are captured by Badjelly, it is Dinglemouse who saves them by escaping and fetching his friend Jim the Giant Eagle. A charming fairy tale which has delighted children for many years.

This was available from: Book depository Fishpond and Amazon

Happy reading

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Escape from the world trade centre

Escape From The World Trade Centre
Author: Leslie Haskin

Escape from the World Trade Center
Hi Everyone

I cried my eyes out at the end of this book!  I don't think I have ever cried at a book like I did with this one.  It touched every heart string as she met up with her loved ones, it was so real.

Leslie went from what read like a very strong minded women to a state one can only read about to envision and then I am sure my mind wouldn't have given the events inside the towers any justice.  I had watch the events of that day unfold via TV.  The whole world caught it on some sort of media.  The planes, then the towers crumbling.  But what Leslie Haskin describes in this book is beyond what could have ever been broadcast by the media.  She watched the events afterwards on her TV and told of how from the inside the building was falling from the instant the plane flew through, but the she couldn't see this from the outside on her TV.

The state of mind caught in her writing is beyond words.  I sit here wondering what to write about this that can explain how I felt reading this but I just can't put it into words.  Just read it!  Take a walk through the tower with this woman, she will show you though her writing. 

This was available from Amazon: Amazon

Happy reading

Sunday, 16 July 2017

Listening for lions

Listening For Lions
Author: Gloria Whelan
ISBN: 978-0-06-058176-3

Hi Everyone,

Here is a little treasure for you.  I have this on my bookcase because for a few years my children followed the Sonlight Curriculum programme.  I was sitting there looking at all the books I have yet to touch and thought it was about time I read some of the books I had handed to my children to read.

I went to bookcase and looked amongst the multitude of options and picked out Listening for Lions.  I am pleased I was drawn to this book.  I was taken from Africa to England and back again.  I walked with a little girl who lost her parents and became a part of a new family so quickly that she had no choice in the matter.  She was placed on a boat to England to live with her grandfather, who wasn't her grandfather but rather Valerie's - The girl who's life she forced replace. 

Sound confusing?  It isn't when your reading it.  But for Rachel it was.  She was screaming to let out the truth but....

She spends the rest of her life unravelling the lies that she had been entangled in, and reforming the truths, until the day that she makes it back to the lions and their sense of safety.

This is a little novel, only 194 pages long.  It wont take you long to read and find treasure in the pages.  I highly recommend this book especially for the middle graders.  It's in my local library so check our yours, it may be there awaiting you.


"If you are among evil people, you must be like the lion, gathering strength and awaiting your time."

Africa is the only home Rachel Sheridan has ever known. But when influenza strikes down her missionary parents, she is left vulnerable prey to her family's wicked neighbors. Surrounded by greed and lies, Rachel is entangled in a criminal scheme and sent to England, where she is forced into a life of deception. Like the lion, she must be patient and strong, awaiting the moment when she can take control of her own fate—and find her way home again at last.

This was available from: Amazon, Book depository and Fishpond

Happy reading

Thursday, 13 July 2017

Asking for roses

Hi Everyone.

Everytime I read this I come up with something new from it.  This is what I love in poetry, the visionary and the mystery all connected dependent on how we see the world each day. 

Robert Frost has to be one of my favourite poets, I keep going back to his poems over an over again and never become warry of his words.

Happy reading

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Just three dates

Hi Everyone,

I fell in love with this book the minute I opened it!  I gave a little giggle at the mothers and could imagine the whole thing happening.  What a brilliant concept.  Three dates in the mothers' arranged marriage plan... Not the norm in their country, but come on they are getting older.  Well the mothers think so any way.  So the scheme is three dates and the mothers will leave them alone.  

This is where I became entangled in their love triangles.  I wanted to bang their heads together and tell them to sort things out many times as they showed their normal humanity based on past believes and hurts.  They seemed great together but such a mess at the same time.  I had to keep turning the pages to see what the next date would bring and if in fact they would finally connect properly. 

The one person I wanted to tear from the book was Marks 'ex-almost-fiancee.  I didn't get to met her until the end but by then she had driven me nuts!  But this is what makes a good book. When you become so a part of the story the characters become real. 

Overall a great read that I would probably pick up and read again.

Happy reading

When their mothers become matchmakers, entangling them in a series of dates with each other, Karen and Mark must each decide whether to entertain the idea of a “marriage of convenience,” or to hold out for an increasingly unlikely marriage based on love. 

Since breaking with her last boyfriend, Karen has refused to trust any man her age. For the past three years, she has not dated the same one twice, and only one in ten has received even a goodnight kiss as she turned him away. Karen is an artist. She follows her feelings, lives in a cluttered loft, and gushes over vivid sunsets.

Mark still dreams about his almost-fiancée, and his date book has been empty since he threw her out a week before he’d planned to ask for her hand. His friends call him the “Ice Man,” since he seldom smiles, especially at a woman. A math professor at the College, logic guides his behavior, he loves order, and an elegant proof is a thing of beauty.

Both Karen and Mark have all but abandoned hope of ever falling in love, and, left on their own, these opposites would never attract. So, their mothers become matchmakers, entangling them in a series of dates by extracting promises that Karen and Mark will go out together three times, suggesting that, in the absence of love, a “marriage of convenience” is a live option.

If you enjoy heartwarming stories based on true-to-life behaviors, with complicated relationships and a less-than-certain outcome, this book is for you.

Available to buy from....

Other books by the author...  
About the author
David Burnett lives in Columbia South Carolina, with his wife and their blue-eyed cat, Bonnie. The Reunion, his first novel, is set in nearby Charleston.

David enjoys traveling, photography, baking bread, and the Carolina beaches. He has photographed subjects as varied as prehistoric ruins on the islands of Scotland, star trails, sea gulls, a Native American powwow, and his grandson, Jack. David and his wife have traveled widely in the United States and the United Kingdom. During one trip to Scotland, they visited Crathes Castle, the ancestral home of the Burnett family near Aberdeen. In The Reunion, Michael's journey through England and Scotland allows him to sketch many places they have visited.

David has graduate degrees in psychology and education and previously was Director of Research for the South Carolina Department of Education. He and his wife have two daughters.

Find the author on the following sites...

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Sunday, 9 July 2017


Revenants: The Odyssey Home
Author: Scott Kauffman

Revenants: The Odyssey Home

Hi Everyone,

I was offered this book for review and I am so glad I excepted the opportunity and made the time to read it.  From the minute I opened it I was able to connect with Betsy.  She had a brilliant relationship with her brother and then he was taken from her in an instant by war. 

She didn't cope!  Instead she went off the rails as she tried to find a new identity without him.  This was written into the novel with brilliance and care.  I felt Scott Kauffman was successful in portraying Betsy's grief without taking it too far.  He managed to keep Betsy real and likable during this faze of her story.

It was when she went to at the hospital that I really entered a new dimension within the novel.  The book geared up a notch and I became transfixed with finding out more and more about the secrets of the secret patient on floor four.  I flicked through the pages wanting Betsy to complete the filing faster or talk more with the patient.  I also wanted to know more about the other patients whom quickly became friends of Betsy and probably every reader this novel.  There are parts in which suggestions are made to some the answers but overall the answers kept sneaking up on me with surprise to each each outcome.

What I really liked was that when the main answers were revealed Scott Kauffman continued to write more into the novel.  He gave Betsy life beyond the mysteries withheld on floor four.  I was able to continue reading about what happened beyond years to each character.  This gave real closure to the novel and I commend Scott Kauffman on his writing. 


A grief-stricken candy-striper serving in a VA hospital following her brother’s death in Viet Nam struggles to return home an anonymous veteran of the Great War against the skullduggery of a congressman who not only controls the hospital as part of his small-town fiefdom but knows the name of her veteran. A name if revealed would end his political ambitions and his fifty-year marriage. In its retelling of Odysseus’ journey, Revenants casts a flickering candle upon the charon toll exacted not only from the families of those who fail to return home but of those who do.

This was available from: Book depository, Amazon and Fishpond

Happy reading

Thursday, 6 July 2017

Revelation Space

Revelation Space
Author: Alastair Reynolds
ISBN: 978-0-441-00942-8

Revelation Space

Hi Everyone,

This comes to you with the recommendation of my daughter.  I haven't read this as yet but slowly my house is fulling up with the books from this series.  She was recommended it by one of her friends and since then she has read the first three books, and the fourth arrived this morning.  She has read the first book several times now!  She has spent the week checking the mail and finally today the fourth book arrived... Just in time for the holidays.


Alastair Reynolds's critically acclaimed debut, Revelation Space, has redefined the space operation with a staggering journey across vast gulfs of time and space to confront the very nature of reality itself.

Nine hundred thousand years ago, something annihilated the Amarantin civilisation just as it was on the verge of discovering space flight.  Now one scientist, Dan Sylveste, will stop at nothing to solve the Amarantin riddle before ancient history repeats itself.  With no other resources at his disposal, Sylveste forges a dangerous alliance with the cyborg crew of the starship Nostalgia for Infinity.  But as he closes in on the secret, a killer closes in on him.  Because the Amarantin were destroyed for a reason - and if that reason is uncovered, the universe - and reality itself - could be irrevocably altered...

This was available from: Book depository Amazon and Fishpond

Happy reading

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

My brother is special: A cerebral palsy story

My Brother Is Special: A Cerebral Palsy Story by Murray Stenton

Ethan is a big brother like no other!

Life with a special need child has its fair share of challenges. These challenges are not only for the parents, but extend to those other wonderful little children, the siblings. This book helps shine some light on the difficulties and the job siblings special needs children experience every day. It is a light-hearted take of one little boy's thoughts of his big brother Ethan, who was born with Cerebral Palsy.

Hi Everyone

I am pleased I have been a part of this blog tour, I have got to read and experience two fantastic books that are both outside the normal childrens books I find allocated to our bookstores shelves.  I am drawn to this book because of the honesty within the words. 

It is a story of two boys... I know it is meant to highlight and give understanding of Cerebral Palsy but I think it does by far more than just that.  While I was reading this awesome little picture book, I could see some of the daily difficulties of this condition, but I could also see the highs and lows of being the older brother.  The illustrations managed to grab the intensity of some of the emotions and I give praise for this ability.  I particularly liked that the inclusion of honest facts such as he get angry and fights with is little brother and is sometimes "mad at the silly things he does when he acts strange and silly".  This, for me, gave the book 'truth' and some fantastic talking points for young children as it is read aloud to them. 

So in conclusion, this book is a fantastic resource for home, day care centres, kindergartens, preschools, and schools.  It has a potential to speak for those with Cerebral Palsy, and the brothers and sisters that have to live along side Cerebral Palsy.  It shows the love for a sibling; the differences between siblings; and the frustrations, that in all honesty every sibling has for their bothers and sisters.

Happy reading

Available to buy from....

From Loving Healing Press

"As a mother, and advocate for, special needs children, I highly recommend this book as a learning tool for others. I gave my child a voice, as this author is doing for his, and I applaud him for it." -- Chynna Laird, author of I'm Not Weird, I Have Sensory Processing Disorder and Not Just Spirited

"Engaging and lighthearted, My Brother is Special captures what children with cerebral palsy and their families may experience. The characters are loveable and entertaining. Chidren will enjoy this book and relate to their experiences" -- Jill Osborne, EDS, LPC, CPC, RPTS, author of Sam Feels Better Now

About the author
From an early age, Murray was artistic. His favorite pastime was and still is doodling cute and fun little characters. As Murray entered the working world he utilized his natural creative talent in his graphic design profession. Illustrating being his true love, Murray started looking for freelance illustration work. Murray had no idea that answering a Kijiji ad would help his long time ambitions come to life. A well-known children’s book author and disability advocate, Jewel Kats gave him a shot at illustrating one of her children’s books. That experience gave Murray the courage to pursue other illustration contracts. Murray had an instant connection to Jewel, through the world of physical disability. Murray’s oldest son Ethan had a stroke at birth causing CP and other life altering conditions. With his new found courage and through the help of Victor R. Volkman and Loving Healing Press Murray brings this wonderful story to children everywhere. Murray’s hope is those siblings of children with disabilities will know they too are not alone.

Find the author on the following sites...

You may also enjoy...
Prince Preemie: A Tale of a Tiny Puppy Who Arrives Early by Jewel Kats (Author), Claudia Marie Lenart (Illustrator)

The King and Queen of Puppy Kingdom are joyfully awaiting the arrival of their Prince. But the couple and their kingdom are thrown into upheaval when it is learned that Prince Puppy will arrive early, before his important crown is completed. How can they call him Prince without a crown? Discover how the King solves this problem in Prince Preemie: A Tale of a Tiny Puppy Who Arrives Early. Children will be swept away into this dreamy, fairy tale land of adorable dogs created from wool.

Available to buy from....

From Loving Healing Press

"As the mother of two children born preterm, I can relate to the sorrow and joy that Prince Preemie's parents faced at his early arrival. Through magical writing and illustrations Jewel Kats and Claudia Marie Lenart once again help children of all abilities and their families understand the special gifts that are inside each one of us." --Kelli Kelley, Founder and Exec. Director, -- Fragile Babies, Strong Support

"Prince Preemie is a sweet book that offers a good way to start conversations with a preemie child about their early birth. The story hints at the stress and fear that comes with having a child prematurely, but leaves the reader feeling hopeful." --Andrea Mullenmeister, writer at

"The arrival of a premature baby can be confusing for a young child. In this delightful dog kingdom, Jewel Kats has created a teaching tool that normalizes the situation. Claudia Marie Lenart’s illustrations look cuddly, every child will love them and be drawn into the story of Prince Preemie even without the words." --Bob Rich, PhD, psychologist, author of Anger and Anxiety: Be In Charge of Your Emotions and Control Phobias

"Prince Preemie is a feel good book -- the story is one of inspiration, determination and acceptance. It reminds us that there is always hope and that with optimism, dedication and love you can create the good and happiness into every situation you face." --Robin Marvel, author of Framing a Family: Building a Foundation to Raise Confident Children

About the author
Once a teen runaway, Jewel Kats is now a two-time Mom's Choice Award winner. For six years, Jewel penned a syndicated teen advice column for Scripps Howard News Service (USA) and The Halifax Chronicle Herald. She gained this position through The Young People's Press. She's won $20,000 in scholarships from Global Television Network, and women's book publisher: Harlequin Enterprises. Jewel also interned in the TV studio of Entertainment Tonight Canada. Her books have been featured in Ability Magazine (USA) twice. She's authored eight books-five are about disabilities. The Museum of disABILITY History celebrated her work with a two-day event. Jewel has appeared as an international magazine cover story four times! Recently, her work was featured in an in-depth article published in "The Toronto Star". Jewel's work has also appeared as an evening news segment on WKBW-TV and on the pages of "The Buffalo News".

Find the author on the following sites...
About the illustrator
Claudia Marie Lenart is a fiber artist from northern Illinois. She experimented in the arts and handwork since childhood and while pursuing a career as a journalist. She finally found her true muse when she discovered needle felting. Her soft sculpture characters are created by repeatedly poking wool and other natural fibers, like alpaca, with a barbed needle. Claudia pioneered a distinct style of illustrating books using needle felted wool to create illustrations as well as a variety of other techniques including wet felting and pressed wool painting.  Connect on Twitter

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