Perfect Picture Book Friday: CAN U SAVE THE DAY? Plus Critique Giveaway

Happy Perfect Picture Book Friday, my friends. It’s been a couple of weeks – a bit of a summer blog break, plus with the #PBChat Mentorship applications and manuscripts, I knew I’d be a bit buried for a while. I’ve started working with my mentee, the lovely Helen Ishmurzin – and we are both enjoying connecting and finding out more about each other.

Life here is busy as usual – I received a phone call from the publicity department at Little Bee. We chatted about the plan for Making Their Voices Heard: The Inspiring Friendship of Ella Fitzgerald and Marilyn Monroe which launches in less than SIX MONTHS! The F&Gs arrived this week also – and I am loving every page of the book!

Speaking about books…we have two books to giveaway.

The lovely Laura Roettiger is giving away a copy of ALIANA REACHES FOR THE MOON. And the winner is…

ELLEN LEVENTHAL

The magnificent Michael Samulak is giving away a copy of A WONDERFUL DAY. And the winner is…

RINDA BEACH

CONGRATULATIONS ELLEN AND RINDA. I’ll reach out to you, Rinda, to get your shipping address…and I believe that Laura and Ellen have already connected.

I’m starting to pack for my Colorado trip – my son and I will be fly-fishing at Eleven Mile Canyon and at the Dream Stream…so I’ve got to bring rods, reels, and all manner of fly-fishing paraphanelia…it’s a good thing Southwest Airlines lets you check two bags for free.

Another good thing is the brand new picture book I am reviewing today!

cover

CAN U SAVE THE DAY?

Written by Shannon Stocker

Illustrated by Tom Disbury

Published by Sleeping Bear Press (2019)

Ages: 5-7

Themes: Getting along, respecting others, alphabet

Synopsis: From Amazon:

“B is an awfully boastful bloke and when he and the rest of the alphabet get together, he can’t help but tease the vowels about their small numbers. So the vowels begin to take off, one by one. The consonants–and the rest of the farm–see just how important vowels really are. With disaster looming and B seeing the error of his ways, can U save the day and set the alphabet right again?”

Why I love this book:

  • Funny – funny – funny…and kids love funny books!
  • So many lessons under the humor…respecting and valuing each other and getting along.
  • Fabulous illustrations!

RELATED ACTIVITIES:

letter-of-the-week-crafts-for-preschoolers-crystalandcomp-1024x10241Photo courtesy: https://crystalandcomp.com/letter-of-the-week-crafts-for-preschoolers/

Check out all of these cool alphabet crafts – for detailed instructions: https://crystalandcomp.com/letter-of-the-week-crafts-for-preschoolers/

Please don’t forget to leave a comment below to be entered in the giveaway of a Picture Book Manuscript Critique from the lovely Shannon Stocker! Her debut picture book, CAN U SAVE THE DAy, JUST LAUNCHED yesterday…so let’s show our support and add this book to our picture book collection, ask local libraries to purchase it for their shelves, and share this post on social media.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend…I leave on Monday for a week in Colorado with my family…looking forward to those beautiful Rocky Mountains…and a bookstore event at Second Star to the Right in Denver on Friday, Aug 23…I know that Julie Hedlund will be there…and Laura Roettiger and several other Colorado kidlit folk…if you are in the neighborhood, please do stop in to say hello.

photo of store

 

Perfect Picture Book Friday: ALIANA REACHES FOR THE MOON Plus Giveaway

On July 20, 1969, something momentous happened.

Two human beings walked on the moon!

It’s the kind of occurence that, if you were old enough to know what was going on, you probably remember exactly what you were doing. My husband and I were on our first cross-country trip. We’d left NYC at 11:30pm (because we were so excited, we couldn’t wait for the morning) on June 29, 1969. We were both teachers and were taking the entire summer to travel. And by July 20th, we had made our way to Bakersfield, California. Here is my journal entry:

It is Sunday, July 20, and we are at our motel. Today we drove about 150 miles and toured through the Italian Swiss Colony Wine factory and tasted a little, too. Tomorrow we will go into San Francisco and go to the AAA office to make reservations and plot out our stay in the city. By the way – it is really an historic night – the astronauts have landed on the moon and are walking around there – HALLELUJAH!!!

This weekend marks the 50th anniversary of that amazing feat. And to help celebrate, we’ve got a very special weekend planned here on Picture Books Help Kids Soar.

Today we are turning the spotlight on ALIANA REACHES FOR THE MOON…with a giveaway of a copy of the book thanks to the generosity of the fabulous debut author author. And tomorrow the lovely Laura Roettiger will be stopping by to chat and share a fabulous treat recipe. Then on Sunday, we have another special guest. But more about that later. Right now, it picture book review time!

AlianaReachesfortheMoon-ebook

ALIANA REACHES FOR THE MOON

Written by Laura Roettiger

Illustrated by Ariel Boroff

Published by Eifrig Publishing (2019)

Ages: 5-8

Themes: Moon, scientific method, family

Synopsis: From Amazon:

Aliana loves observing everything in nature. Noticing how bright the light of the moon is in her bedroom, she spends time learning about the moon and experimenting with light. As she prepares for her brother’s birthday, she plans for a wonderful surprise to be revealed at the next full moon.

inside spread

Why I love this book:

  • A strong mightygirl who loves science
  • Additional layer of family love
  • Wonderful story
  • Great illustrations that keep the reader turning the pages
  • A perfect story to help celebrate the 50th anniversary of the moon walk

RELATED ACTIVITIES:

Moon-activities-for-kidsPhoto courtesy: https://www.howweelearn.com/moon-activities-for-kids/

For detailed instructions on various moon crafts: https://www.howweelearn.com/moon-activities-for-kids/

Please remember to leave a comment to be entered in the giveaway of a copy of this awesome book. And also remember that the best gifts we can give our favorite authors are:

  1. Buy their books
  2. Review their books
  3. Tell our friends about their books
  4. Ask our local library to purchase the books for their collections

And last of all, don’t forget to be back here tomorrow for a super cool interview with the awesome Laura.

Plus on Sunday, we’ll have a special post from self-published author Carmen Gloria. You won’t want to miss that because she is going to chat about her writing journey…and many other journeys. Oh, and there will be a giveaway. of her newest book in her planet series, Dear Pluto. Plus, in honor of the 50th anniversary of the moon walk, Carmen is giving us a link for a free download on Amazon Kindle of the Dear Pluto ebook.

I hope you all have a safe and wonderful weekend!

 

 

Perfect Picture Book Friday: LITTLE LENA AND THE BIG TABLE Plus Double-Header PB Manuscript Critique Giveaway

Happy Perfect Picture Book Friday, dear friends!

Today’s picture book is so darn relatable for kids – in fact, it stirs memories of my own. I’ll bet lots of you can remember family gatherings and wanting to sit at the ‘big’ table. Well, author Pj McIlvaine has tapped into those memories to create a story that is sure to strike a chord with everyone who reads it. And the lovely Pj is offering not one, but TWO Picture Book Manuscript Critiques as a giveaway!!!! So please make sure you leave a comment.

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LITTLE LENA AND THE BIG TABLE

Written by PJ McIlvaine

Illustrated by Leila Nabih

Published by Big Belly Books (2019)

Ages: 4-8

Themes: Growing up, family

Synopsis: From Amazon

Little Lena has her heart set to sit at the big table. But every year her family tells her she’s just not big enough. Little Lena is determined to show everyone how big she is.

Why I love this book:

  • Sweet story about something most kids will be able to relate to
  • Charming illustrations with a hint of Mary Engelbreit
  • I think this will be a favorite at all holiday times and family gatherings

RELATED ACTIVITIES

Make a Placemat

pic-cutout-placematPhoto courtesy: https://www.artistshelpingchildren.org/placematsartscraftideaskids.html

Kids love creating! They love cutting! They love pasting! And these placemats can be designed for any holiday or occasion. All you need: a sheet of paper, two sheets of wax paper for each placemat, pictures cut from magazines, catalogs, old greeting cards, glue, scissors. To make: cut pictures and glue in place on sheet of paper. Lay paper on one piece of wax paper which is about an inch wider and longer than the decorated paper and cover with the other piece of wax paper. The next step must be done by an adult!  Press a hot iron over the wax paper…the wax paper sheets will stick together all around the edges and will form a lovely waterproof placemat. For more detailed instructions and directions for other placemats: https://www.artistshelpingchildren.org/placematsartscraftideaskids.html

And as much as kids love creating, they love feeling useful even more. Give your children’s self-esteem a boost by including them in the planning of your next family event. They can help with the shopping and with the food prep and with getting the house ready. Feeling useful and needed builds self-worth.

With the summer upon us, some things slow down while others speed up. Please don’t be too busy to take a few minutes to review a favorite book or recommend it to a friend or to your local library…other than buying the book (which is also a lovely thing to do), those are the best ways we can help our favorite authors!

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend. I will be away in Massachusetts, cheering my son and son-in-law as they compete in the Tough Mudder. Here’s a  photo from last year’s event.

tough mudder hand in air

Perfect Picture Book Friday: ONCE UPON A TWISTED TALE Plus Giveaway

Hello dear friends! It’s another double-header weekend here at Picture Books Help Kids Soar. Up today for Perfect Picture Book Friday is a brand-new just-about-to-be-launched ONCE UPON A TWISTED TALE. And tomorrow, we’ll be chatting with the author, the lovely Gayle C. Krause who is generously offering the winner of the giveaway the choice of either a signed copy of her new book or a pb manuscript critique…WOW! So please make sure you leave a comment today AND tomorrow…and then you’ll have two chances to win.

But before we get to the review, we need to take care of the prizes from our last giveaway…the fabulous author – illustrator team of Raven Howell and Carina Povarchik. I’m celebrating that they are Storm sisters and the winner will receive a copy of their first book: SHIMMER: SONGS OF NIGHT and their brand-new book: GLIMMER: SING OF SUN. And the winner is:

MARSHAELYN

Congratulations, MARSHAELYN…I’ll be in touch soon for your address to I can send you the books!

And now, back to our regularly scheduled program: Perfect Picture Book Friday

ONCE UPON A TWISTED TALE

Written by Gayle C. Krause Continue reading

Perfect Picture Book Friday: GLIMMER: SING OF SUN Plus Giveaway

Happy Perfect Picture Book Friday, my friends.

When spring is in the air, you know it’s time for baseball season. And that means another double-header for us right here! This is truly a double-header in every sense of the word. We have TWO posts this weekend (Perfect Picture Book Friday and Will Write for Cookies) featuring TWO gifted creatives (author Raven Howell and illustrator Carina Povarchik) and you, dear readers, have a chance to win TWO of their wonderful books (Shimmer, Sing of Night and their newest collaboration that launches next week and is available for preorder right now: Glimmer: Sing of Sun).

But first, we need to announce some winners from recent blog post giveaways:

The lovely Callie Metler-Smith donated two copies of HOW TO BABY SIT A LOGAN. And the winners are:

Doreen Robinson and Lisette

The wonderful Mia Wenjen donated a copy of her brand-new picture book, SUMO JOE. And the winner is:

Nancy Ferguson.

Congratulations! I will connect with you all very soon. But now everybody….

…put on your sunscreen, grab a cool drink, and sit back and enjoy!

Glimmer Song of the Sun cover

GLIMMER: SING OF SUN

Written by Raven Howell

Illustrated by Carina Povarchik

Published by Clear Fork/Spork (2019)

Ages: 4-8

Themes: Nature, poetry

Why I Love This Book:

  • Joyful poem after joyful poem that celebrate nature and being outdoors
  • Fabulous illustration after fabulous illustration filled with light and life and love
  • Do I need another reason? No problem…this is a sequel to another collaboration of Raven and Carina: SHIMMER: SING OF NIGHT
  • Do I need another reason? No worries…both Raven Howell and Carina Povarchik are Storm Literary Agency sisters of mine.

RELATED ACTIVITIES:

nature-crafts-squarePhoto courtesy: https://www.howweelearn.com/breathtaking-nature-crafts-for-kids/

For detailed instructions on many wonderful nature crafts for kids: https://www.howweelearn.com/breathtaking-nature-crafts-for-kids/

Go for a walk in the backyard, playground, or park…and look for nature. Then, you and your child can each choose something you’ve seen and write a poem about it.

If you are looking for more picture book reviews and activities, please hop over to Susanna Leonard Hill’s Perfect Picture Book Friday website

And if you are in the Boston/Dedham MA area on Saturday, June 1 (that’s tomorrow), please stop in at Peter Reynolds’ Blue Bunny Bookstore at 1pm because I’ll be there, reading Four Otters Toboggan and doing a fun craft activity with the kiddos and chatting about how we can protect wildlife habitats.

Please don’t forget to leave a comment here to be entered in the double-header giveaway! Plus, do come back tomorrow for an extra special (because it’s a double-header, right?) Will Write for Cookies post where Raven and Carina chat about their collaboration and offer something might sweet to eat!

Perfect Picture Book Friday: SUMO JOE Plus Giveaway

Happy Perfect Picture Book Friday, my friends! I had a fabulous time at the NESCBWI conference in Springfield, Massachusetts last weekend. The keynotes were amazing…Jane Yolen, Patricia MacLachlan and Lynda Mullaly Hunt. My presentations went really well…I think folks walked away feeling they had gotten something of value. And getting to hug lots of kidlit friends was so much fun!

Today’s book  is so much fun also and it’s from one of my fellow #Newin19 teammates, Mia Wenjen who hosts the fabulous Pragmatic Mom blog.

But, before we get to the review, we owe someone a book. Two weeks ago, Jodi McKay offered a copy of her newest picture book, PENCIL’S PERFECT PICTURE, and the winner is: Continue reading

Perfect Picture Book Friday: PENCIL’S PERFECT PICTURE Plus Giveaway

Happy Perfect Picture Book Friday, my friends!  I’m still in Chicago, but I wanted to make sure I shared this lovely new book by Jodi McKay. Think THE DOT meets THE DAY THE CRAYONS QUIT. It’s a story that will encourage kids to draw for pleasure, do their best, and have fun…and it launches in just a few days. And author McKay is donating a copy of the book as a GIVEAWAY…YAY! Please make sure you leave a comment to be entered for a chance to win.

61ue4z8Xu+L PENCIL’S PERFECT PICTURE

Written by Jodi McKay

Illustrated by Juliana Motzko

Published by Albert Whitman (2019)

Ages: 3-5

Themes: Do your best; art; believe in yourself

Synopsis: From Amazon:

Pencil is trying to draw the perfect picture for his dad. So, he asks his friends Brush, Pastel, Marker, Crayon, and Chalk what makes their art perfect. But they each have a different answer. How will Pencil be able to create his own perfect picture?

Why I love this book:

  • Wonderful text that will encourage discussion about tackling projects we are unsure of
  • Creative illustrations that help us connect with the main character, even though it is a pencil
  • I love that the author used art supplies as the characters to show how kids feel

RELATED ACTIVITIES:

Deocrated Pencils

Decorative-Pencils-Family-Craft-thediydreamer.com_Photo courtesy: https://thediydreamer.com/crafts/decorative-pencils-family-craft/

How about making the perfect pencil? For detailed instructions: https://thediydreamer.com/crafts/decorative-pencils-family-craft/

And remember, the greatest gift we can give an author is to buy their book, review their book, tell a friend about their book, and ask our local library to add the book to their colloection.

Don’t forget to leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of PENCIL’S PERFECT PICTURE. We’d love to hear how you felt about your art when you were a kid.

For more wonderful picture book reviews, please visit Susanna Leonard Hill’s Perfect Picture Book Friday post.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend. Please stay tuned for the #50PreciousWordsforKids International Writing Challenge: April 29-May 6…if you know any teachers or parents who might want their children to participate, please pass along the information.