Month: May 2016

The Rabbit ate my Homework: Book Review

Book review: “The Rabbit ate my Homework” and “The Rabbit ate my Flip Flops”.

rabbit who ate my homeworkI spent the sunny afternoon reading “The Rabbit ate my Homework” and it’s sequel, “The Rabbit ate my Flip Flops,” by Rachel Elizabeth Cole.

Eleven year old Drew Montgomery is having a bad day. He breaks his new bike, after being told not to ride/do jumps on it by his father, and his little sister, Libby, knows what he’s done. So, when they find a rabbit abandoned in a box and Libby wants to take it home, she threatens to tell his parents about the bike unless he agrees. Blackmailed and miserable,  with problems at school and rather absent, work-a-holic parents Drew’s life quickly lurches from one disaster to another in a hilarious chain of events all centred around the rabbit.

The characters in the book were really well-drawn with Drew and his sister having distinct personalities and voices. Their reactions to the problems of keeping a rabbit hidden in Drew’s room were hilarious and spot-on for their different ages. The book has short chapters and rattles along at a cracking pace, just right for the target, middle-grade, age group but will also be enjoyable to adults reading it with their children. I really had to find out how all Drew’s problems would be resolved. Needless to say, things did turn out right in the end.  

It says a lot about a book when you want to read it’s sequel. So, I set into book 2 of the series, “The Rabbit ate my Flip Flops.”rabbit ate

The Montgomery household has now got used to the routine of having a pet house-rabbit but things start to go awry when their parents go out of town and Drew and Libby are taken on holiday with their grandparents. The plan is for Drew’s friend to look after the rabbit, but Libby is worried he’ll feel abandoned and sneaks him along.

This story sees Drew coping with kids with a mean dog, their grandparents over-bearing friend and a defective campervan as well as Libby finding more rabbits to rescue. It’s cleverly plotted so each disaster followed nicely from the one before and events don’t feel forced.

I particularly liked the way the relationships between Drew and his friends, both male and female, were drawn and also the realistic way the rabbit pooped and chewed it’s way through everything it shouldn’t, making a refreshing change from the usual fluffy way rabbits are presented in children’s fiction. Anyone considering getting a rabbit for a pet should definitely read these books.

There are more books due in The Rabbit Ate series and they are well worth looking out for,

Happy Reading.

Suzie x 

PS There’s a giveaway over on Goodreads for an autographed copy of Better Buckle Up.  Check it out.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Better Buckle Up by Suzie W.

Better Buckle Up

by Suzie W.

Ends June 21, 2016.

See the details
at Goodreads.

Enter Here 

Read With Me
Zog – #AtoZfavbooks challenge Day 26

ZogZog by Julia Donaldson…

… Day 26 May #AtoZfavbooks challenge.

It’s the last day of the #AtoZfavbooks challenge and the book for Day 26 is Zog, by Julia Donaldson.

Let’s face it, you could fill your shelves with books by Julia Donaldson and get a winner every time but let’s focus on Zog.

Zog is a young dragon at Dragon school who is learning how to breathe fire, roar and capture princesses. He’s very keen, but not always very successful. However, when Princess Pearl volunteers to go back to school with him, he finally gets the gold star he was trying for. But in a clever plot twist, this is not the end of the story. A knight comes to rescue Princess Pearl, who has been having a great time looking after the young dragons and she doesn’t want to go.

How will the story work out? Julia Donaldson’s brilliant imagination comes up with a happy ending for everyone … even the knight’s horse.

Told in rhyme and featuring fantastic illustrations with lively colour and lots of detail, this book is bound to be a winner with you and your little ones.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my choices for the #AtoZfavbooks challenge. Look out for my round-up of the books and the things I learned along the way coming soon.

Happy reading.

Suzie x

P.S. Read this book? Let me know in the comments below.

P.P.S. Don’t forget to share your favourite book title starting with the letter Z in the comments below or post them on facebook or twitter with the hashtag #AtoZfavbooks so I can find them.

You Can’t take an Elephant on a Bus – #AtoZfavbooks challenge – Day 25

You Can't take an elephant on a busYou can’t take an Elephant on a Bus by Patricia Cleveland-Peck …

… Day 25 May #AtoZfavbooks challenge.

You can’t take an Elephant on a Bus. Well, of course you can’t. This book, chosen for the pen-ultimate of the #AtoZfavbooks challenge, explains why.

It then goes on to look at other modes of transport for different animals. We see centipedes on roller skates, pigs on skateboards and monkeys in shopping trolleys; all with appropriate, hilarious explanations of why this would not be a good idea.

I don’t know why, but I haven’t chosen many books written in rhyme. Children love the rhythm of the verse in this book and there is plenty to talk about in the funny illustrations. After several readings of this book, we started making up silly scenario’s of our own which was really fun and a great way to spark your child’s imagination.

Suzie x

P.S. Read this book? Let me know in the comments below.

P.P.S. Don’t forget to share your favourite book title starting with the letter Y in the comments below or post them on facebook or twitter with the hashtag #AtoZfavbooks so I can find them.

 

Giveaway on Goodreads: Better Buckle Up

giveawayGiveaway on Goodreads: Better Buckle Up

Starting today, there’s a chance for you to win a shiny, new, paperback copy of Better Buckle Up in the giveaway over on Goodreads autographed especially for you or your child.

Entry is easy.

Click on the link below.

(You do have to be a member of Goodreads, but it’s free and there are lots of other interesting books for you to try for as well)

Better Buckle Up aims to make car safety fun. You can find out more here but this is what people are saying.

The colourful illustrations are delightful and add a level of humour for the parent to enjoy, while reading the story with their young family.   Callie Carling

A delight for parents and children.     Murboyd

This book does an excellent job reinforcing the importance of buckling up … in a manner that empowers the child to choose and cooperate.    L. Favreau

A very clear and positive message, in a captivating story.    P. Edwards

The winner will be decided by the Goodreads team on 21st of June.

So, don’t delay. You have to be in to win.

Good luck.

Suzie x 

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Better Buckle Up by Suzie W.

Better Buckle Up

by Suzie W.

Ends June 21, 2016.

See the details
at Goodreads.

Enter Here 


Better Buckle Up cover

Xavier Ox’s Xylophone Experiment – #AtoZfavbooks challenge – Day 24

Xavier Ox's Xylophone ExperimentXavier Ox’s Xylophone Experiment by Barbara deRubertis …

… Day 24 May #AtoZfavbooks challenge

OK, I admit it. I had no idea what book to choose for Day 24 of the #AtoZfavbooks challenge. We didn’t have one that started with X at home and I couldn’t find one on my visit to the library. Thank goodness for Google. And enter Xavier Ox’s Xylophone Experiment by Barbara deRubertis.

The book is part of the Animal Antics A to Z series published by Kane Press. (Hey, if I’d known that at the beginning of the challenge, I could have used all their titles and had an easy time 😉 ) Anyway, it has beautiful illustrations that I fell in love with immediately and is a fun story about Xavier, an ox who loves music. When his enthusiastic drumming at school ends in the boxes he’s using as a drum kit exploding into pieces, and the xylophone he would like is too expensive for him to buy, his school friends experiment to build him a xylophone he won’t be able to break.

Does the xylophone experiment succeed? You’ll have to read it and find out.

As well as being a good read, this book has the added advantage of giving early readers practice in the letter X which can be quite hard to find. With titles like Kylie Kangaroo’s Karate Kickers  and Tessa Tiger’s Temper Tantrum other books in the series promise to be just as good.

So, here’s my new favourite book for X. Bet you can’t say the title ten times fast without getting your tongue in a twist.

Suzie x

P.S. Read this book? Let me know in the comments below.

P.P.S. Don’t forget to share your favourite book title starting with the letter X in the comments below or post them on facebook or twitter with the hashtag #AtoZfavbooks so I can find them.

Where’s Spot? – #AtoZfavbooks challenge – Day 23

Where's SpotWhere’s Spot? by Eric Hill …

… Day 23 May #AtoZfavbooks challenge.

Where’s Spot? by Eric Hill was a firm favourite when my children were small. We even had a cuddly Spot dog. And I’m happy to report it’s still as popular with my grand-children too. Hence it has a well-earned place on day 23 of the May #AtoZfavbooks challenge.

The story is simple. It’s dinner time but Spot’s mummy can’t find him. Follow her as she searches the house, finding a crocodile under the bed, a hippo in the piano and a bear with a honey pot behind the door (don’t we all!)

Where’s Spot? is book to delight generations of children to come.  Here’s the animated version for your delight.

I must look into finding a cuddly Spot for the grand-babies 🙂

Suzie x

P.S. Read this book? Let me know in the comments below.

P.P.S. Don’t forget to share your favourite book title starting with the letter W in the comments below or post them on facebook or twitter with the hashtag #AtoZfavbooks so I can find them.

Update on Better Buckle Up

updateUpdate.

I just had to update you with this this screenshot from Amazon.

Better Buckle Up is at no. 5 in the children’s ‘cars and trucks’ category. Squeee!

Yes, I know it has a long way to go to reach Amazon’s all time no. 5 but I was still excited anyway.

I’d like to thank all the people who have downloaded the book since it went live on Wednesday and especially those who have taken the time to post a review. Reviews means so much to authors.

I hope you and your little ones are enjoying the story and are chanting ‘Better Buckle Up’ when you fasten them in their car seats.

Love Suzie x 

The Very Hungry Caterpillar – #AtoZfavbooks May Challenge – Day 22

Very Hungry CaterpillarThe Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle…

… Day 22 May #AtoZfavbooks challenge.

The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. Who hasn’t read this classic children’s book? A no-brainer choice for Day 22 of the May #AtoZfavbooks challenge.

There are so many editions of this story. Books with pop-ups, books with finger puppets and bean-bag toys, books with touchy-feely bits along with the ‘eaten’ holes in the page. There have been games based on the book, it’s been used in a campaign to promote healthy eating and every year, on the first day of spring, we have a Very Hungry Caterpillar Day with folks dressing up to celebrate the book. Yes, it’s that well loved.

So, on the off-chance that you haven’t come across this book (or that you just forgot), the story goes: after hatching from his egg, the ever-hungry caterpillar eats his way through increasing amounts of food until he builds himself a cocoon, emerging as a beautiful butterfly.

As well as teaching children the life-cycle of a butterfly, you get the opportunity to practice counting to five and even very young children enjoy the award-winning, bright illustrations.

I love listening to authors read their books, so here is Eric himself to tell the story. Take it away, Eric.

It’s not hard to see why this has been such a popular book. A must-have for every child’s bookshelf.

Suzie x

P.S. Read this book? (Of course, you have) Let me know in the comments below.

P.P.S. Don’t forget to share your favourite book title starting with the letter V in the comments below or post them on facebook or twitter with the hashtag #AtoZfavbooks so I can find them.

 

Talk of the Town
The Ugly Duckling = #AtoZfavbooks May challenge – Day 21

The Ugly DucklingThe Ugly Duckling by Ian Beck …

… Day 21 May #AtoZfavbooks challenge.

A retelling of the classic story, The Ugly Duckling, is the book for Day 21 of the #AtoZfavbooks challenge.

“Once upon a time there was a mother duck who had seven little ducklings. Six of them were soft and fluffy and yellow. The seventh duckling was different …”

My grandchildren love this story. We have a family of little ducklings on my pond at the moment, which has prompted much discussion about which one is the ‘ugly’ one that will grow  into a swan.

ducks

Ian Beck’s version has beautiful, gentle illustrations and just enough text for small children.

Suzie x

P.S. Read this book? Let me know in the comments below.

P.P.S. Don’t forget to share your favourite book title starting with the letter U in the comments below or post them on facebook or twitter with the hashtag #AtoZfavbooks so I can find them.

Things Evie Eats – #AtoZfavbooks challenge – Day 20

Things Evie EatsThings Evie Eats …

… Day 20 May #AtoZfavbooks challenge.

Day 20 of the #AtoZfavbooks challenge features Things Evie Eats. (It’s not cheating to pick your own book, is it?)

I’m sure you all know a fussy eater. Well, Things Evie Eats is the story of a little girl with very definite ideas on the things she wants to eat.

When Evie decides she only wants to eat flowers, her big (-ish) brother comes to the rescue and keeps everyone happy.

I’ve had so much fun with food whilst writing this book which is due to be published in paperback and ebook on 20th July 2016. Sign up for the newsletter to catch the recipes for your own fussy eaters.

Pancakes

Suzie x

P.S. Don’t forget to share your favourite book title starting with the letter T in the comments below or post them on facebook or twitter with the hashtag #AtoZfavbooks so I can find them.