Review: Take it Away, Tommy!: A Breaking Cat News Adventure

Title: Take It Away, Tommy!: A Breaking Cat News Adventure
Author: Georgia Dunn
Genre: Children’s, Graphic Novel
Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: March 31, 2020
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

Tonight’s top story: the intrepid team of feline reporters is back on the beat and tackling stories like a runaway toy mouse in this second collection of Breaking Cat News comics for middle-grade readers.

Once again Lupin, Elvis, and Puck—alongside boisterous field correspondents like Tommy—deliver hard-hitting reportage on all of the most pressing issues, such as Vacuum Awareness Week, the case of the missing breakfast, and the history of fuzzy blankets. The gang also meets new characters like Burt, the free-spirited barn cat who helps solve some AV problems. And these cats will need all of the help they can get to get to the bottom of some mysterious ghost sightings and prove they’re not scaredy.

The More-to-Explore section includes paper dolls, how to make pet rock cats, and explores the Big Pink House and the BCN apartment within.

Review:

This is a hilarious graphic novel, with cats reporting on the news.

The cats report on various issues in the house, including a ghost, holidays, and a kidnapping of a toy mouse. Their perspectives on human actions were so funny. They insisted on fixing a man’s hair once he got a haircut by licking his head. They had the common enemy of the vacuum cleaner, who they tried to become friends with despite the danger. They also got into any food that was left around the house.

There were some cute crafts at the end of the book. One idea was to make pet rocks for anyone who can’t have a pet cat. Another craft was paper dolls of the characters that could be cut out of the back of the book.

This book was so funny! It’s a great gift for anyone who loves cats!

Thank you Andrews McMeel Publishing for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Lupin Leaps In: A Breaking Cat News Adventure by Georgia Dunn

Breaking Cat News: Cats Reporting on the News That Matters to Cats by Georgia Dunn

Have you read Take It Away, Tommy!: A Breaking Cat News Adventure? What did you think of it?

Review: Twisted Fairy Tales: Little Rude Riding Hood

Title: Twisted Fairy Tales: Little Rude Riding Hood
Author: Jo Franklin, Chris Jevons (illustrator)
Genre: Childrens, Picture Book
Publisher: Arcturus Publishing
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: March 15, 2020
Rating: ★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

Once upon a time, a fairy tale went very wrong! This new twist on a traditional children’s story is packed with fun, humour, and energy.

Little Rude is incredibly cheeky to everyone that she meets. She doesn’t even know the meaning of “please” and “thank you!” However, that could all change when she meets a surprisingly polite wolf on her way to Grandma’s house. 

Will Little Rude’s constant insults drive even this newly reformed Big Bad Wolf over the edge? This riotously funny remix on the traditional fairy tale will delight children and adults alike. 

This hilarious tale featuring brand-new full-colour illustrations will be sure to thrill readers aged 6+.

Review:

In this book, Little Red Riding Hood is a very rude girl, so she is called Little Rude Riding Hood. Her parents send her to bring her grandmother a present for her birthday, but Little Rude doesn’t want to. Eventually they convince her to go. Along her way to her grandmother’s house, she meets kind creatures, but she is still rude to them.

This story had a great twist on the original tale. Since Little Rude is so rude to her parents and everyone else, it shows kids that she is behaving badly. She behaves in the opposite way from Little Red Riding Hood, who was very kind and trusting. Another twist is that the characters who usually attack the grandmother, like the wolf and the lumberjack, are actually friends with her grandmother.

This is a fun twist on Little Red Riding Hood!

Thank you Arcturus Publishing for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Twisted Fairy Tales: The Ninjabread Man by Stewart Ross, Chris Jevons (illustrator)

Twisted Fairy Tales: The Three Little Narwhals by Stewart Ross, Chris Jevons (illustrator)

Other Books in the Series:

Have you read Little Rude Riding Hood? What did you think of it?

Review: Work it, Girl: Become a Leader Like Michelle Obama

Title: Work it, Girl: Become a Leader Like Michelle Obama
Author: Caroline Moss, Sinem Erkas (illustrator)
Genre: Children’s, Nonfiction, Biography
Publisher: Frances Lincoln Children’s Books
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: March 3, 2020
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

In this imaginatively illustrated book from the Work It, Girl series, discover how Michelle became an inspirational leader, FLOTUS, lawyer, author, and role model in this true story of her life. Then, learn 10 key lessons from her work you can apply to your own life.

Michelle Obama grew up on the South Side of Chicago in a little bungalow with a close-knit family. She loved going to school, and she knew that, one day, she would use her voice to empower other young girls, just like her. Young Michelle was a brilliant student and wonderful daughter. With hard work and talent, she propelled herself into the universities of Princeton and Harvard. She qualified as a lawyer and life was going smoothly…Then she met a guy named Barack.

Work It, Girl is an empowering series of biographies featuring modern women in the world of work, from designers and musicians to CEOs and scientists. Each of these vibrantly illustrated books tells the story of a remarkable woman in 10 chapters that highlight transformative moments in her life, following the ups and downs that she faced on her road to success. At the end, 10 key lessons show what you can learn from these moments, and self-reflection questions help you apply these lessons to your own life. Brightly colored photo illustrations of 3-D cut paper artwork featuring inspiring quotes from these amazing women bring their stories to vivid life. Learn how to work it as you lay the foundations for your own successful career. 

Review:

This children’s book is about Michelle Obama’s life. The first half of the book covers her childhood and young adult life. She was very focused on school and continued to follow her dream of going to Princeton, even when her school councilors said she wouldn’t get in. In the second half of the book, Michelle meets Barack Obama and they raise their family.

I didn’t know anything about Michelle Obama’s childhood, so it was interesting to learn about her. She is even more inspiring after hearing that she was discouraged from following her dreams, but succeeded anyway. This book has made me want to read her memoir, Becoming.

The books in this series are beautifully illustrated. The graphics look like cut out pieces of paper, layered to make pictures. That technique makes the pages look textured. The illustrations are brightly covered, which is uplifting.

I really enjoyed this book!

Thank you Frances Lincoln Children’s Books for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Work it, Girl: Blast Off Into Space Like Mae Jemison

Work it, Girl: Run the Show Like CEO Oprah Winfrey

Other Books in the Series:

Have you read Become a Leader Like Michelle Obama? What did you think of it?

Review: Twisted Fairy Tales: Snow White and the Seven Robots

Title: Twisted Fairy Tales: Snow White and the Seven Robots
Author: Stewart Ross, Chris Jevons (illustrator)
Genre: Children’s, Picture Book
Publisher: Arcturus Publishing
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: February 15, 2020
Rating: ★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

When the wicked Star Queen shipwrecks her daughter, Snow White, on a remote forest planet, the plucky princess uses her engineering know-how to rebuild her ruined spacecraft into robot helpers! Can she and her mechanical friends find a way to defeat the Star Queen once and for all?

Review:

This is another great fairy tale with a twist.

This story takes place in space. Snow White has a talent for building robots. The evil queen sends her away, since she has been told by her “space book” screen that Snow White is the best. I liked these space and technology elements of the story.

There was a different twist to the story because the evil queen sends fruit robots to put Snow White to sleep, rather than giving her an apple. The fruit shoots a poison dart at her, and the only way to wake her is to remove it. This is another way a technological element replaced the magic of the original fairytale.

This was a great story!

Thank you Arcturus Publishing for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Twisted Fairy Tales: Little Rude Riding Hood by Jo Franklin, Chris Jevons (illustrator)

Twisted Fairy Tales: The Ninjabread Man by Stewart Ross, Chris Jevons (illustrator)

Have you read Twisted Fairy Tales: Snow White and the Seven Robots? What did you think of it?

Review: David Attenborough (Little People, Big Dreams)

Title: David Attenborough (Little People, Big Dreams)
Author: Maria Isabel Sánchez Vegara, Mikyo Noh (illustrator)
Genre: Children’s, Picture Book
Publisher: Frances Lincoln Children’s Books
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: February 4, 2020
Rating: ★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

In this book from the critically acclaimed Little People, BIG DREAMS series, discover the life of David Attenborough, the inspiring broadcaster and conservationist.

Little David grew up in Leicester on the campus of a university, where his father was a professor. As a child, he spent hours in the science library, collating his own specimens and creating a mini animal museum. When he was old enough to go to university, he studied science and zoology—but what he wanted most of all was to be close to the animals he was studying. So, he started working in television, visiting animals in their natural habitats, and telling the world the untold stories of these animals. This moving book features stylish and quirky illustrations and extra facts at the back, including a biographical timeline with historical photos and a detailed profile of the broadcaster’s life.

Review:

Sir David Attenborough is passionate about nature. He has always loved learning about how the natural world works. He created many tv shows about animals and nature. He was also knighted by the Queen for his work on documentaries about planet Earth.

I didn’t know some of these facts about Sir David Attenborough before reading this book. For example, there are many species of plants and animals named after him, such as a frog named Pristimantis Attenboroughi. He is an inspiring man who has done a lot of work to preserve our natural planet.

This is a great story to teach children about the life of Sir David Attenborough.

Thank you Frances Lincoln for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Stephen Hawking (Little People, Big Dreams) by Maria Isabel Sánchez Vegara

Martin Luther King Jr. (Little People, Big Dreams) by Maria Isabel Sánchez Vegara

Have you read David Attenborough? What did you think of it?

Review: Surprise Under the Stars (Creature Campers #2)

Title: Surprise Under the Stars (Creature Campers #2)
Author: Joe McGee, Bea Tormo (illustrator)
Genre: Children’s
Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: March 10, 2020
Rating: ★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

The Creature Campers are back for another adventure! To pass their map and compass skills test, they must find their way to a hidden spot in the forest, where a picnic feast awaits!

Follow Norm the Bigfoot and his friends as they brave a swampy lake, a scheming creature collector, and a starry night surprise to get to their deliciously sweet reward—and learn the true meaning of teamwork and trust.

Review:

I loved the first book in the Creature Campers series, so I was excited to read this one.

In this story, they have to do a classic camp activity, which is learn how to use a compass. They have to follow a trail to find a special pie. However, the activity is spoiled by the villain, Barnaby, who uses a magnet to attract them to him and disrupt their compass.

This was a funny story. The villain ended up messing up his own plot when he got trapped and the kids had to rescue him. It was a great ending to the story.

Thank you Andrews McMeel Publishing for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

The Monster Squad by Joe McGee, Ethan Long (illustrator)

Have you read Surprise Under the Stars? What did you think of it?

Review: The Elephant

Title: The Elephant
Author: Peter Carnavas
Genre: Children’s
Publisher: Pajama Press
Source: Publisher
Format: Paperback
Release Date: March 17, 2020
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

When Olive’s dad drags himself to work in the morning, the elephant goes with him. When he comes home again, so does the elephant. It’s always there, heavy and silent, casting a shadow of sadness over him. Olive knows it has been like this since her mother passed away when she was a year old, and she can’t stand to see her father burdened anymore. With help from her grandfather and her best friend Arthur, she hatches a plan to rid her family of the elephant once and for all. Before long, she’ll learn that while happiness isn’t that simple, small things can move mountains—or elephants. Award-winning author-illustrator Peter Carnavas portrays a child’s response to her father’s depression with naïve wisdom. In defiance of the looming grey presence, The Elephant is an intergenerational story of resilience, family, and hope.

Review:

Olive can see a gray elephant following her father around. The elephant keeps growing in size, but no one else can see it. The elephant represents her father’s sadness, and Olive wants to get rid of it. Her grandfather also gets a gray animal, a tortoise, after she has an accident. Olive has to think of creative ways to help send these animals away.

This story is a great metaphor for depression or mental health problems. Olive can physically see how her father’s depression is dragging him down, as if he has a giant elephant following him. This was a creative way to teach children about mental health. It also shows that sometimes you need others to help you get rid of the elephant.

I loved this book!

Thank you Pajama Press for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

The List of Things That Will Not Change by Rebeca Stead

A Possibility of Whales by Karen Rivers

Have you read The Elephant? What did you think of it?