This is a collection of the first 3 books in the Dresden Files series by Jim Butcher. I've reviewed each book separately, so there's really not much nThis is a collection of the first 3 books in the Dresden Files series by Jim Butcher. I've reviewed each book separately, so there's really not much need to put much here....more
Basic Premise: A description of the favorite activities of the Lego Friends characters.
I think I would literally kill to get a plot in one of these daBasic Premise: A description of the favorite activities of the Lego Friends characters.
I think I would literally kill to get a plot in one of these damned books instead of just these endless descriptions of things characters like. These aren't characters, they are marketing ploys. Would my son notice if I paid the librarians to hide these books from the shelves when they see us coming in to the library???...more
Basic Premise: 2 of the Lego friends characters love horses.
That's pretty much it. There is no story, no real plot here, just a description of how mucBasic Premise: 2 of the Lego friends characters love horses.
That's pretty much it. There is no story, no real plot here, just a description of how much a couple of these toy characters love horses. My son loves horses, so he is mildly obsessed with this book right now. If your child is horse-crazy, odds are they won't even notice that it doesn't even really talk about any horse specifics or tell an actual story. Mine doesn't. This book exists purely to tap into that peculiar obsession so many children (girls, in particular) have with horses by connecting them with Legos via the girl-centric Friends line.
I continue to be nowhere near as impressed with these Discovery Kids books as my Lego-obsessed son....more
Basic Plot: A description of the Lego Friends characters and how they interact.
This was another dry, non-fiction-esque treatise from Discovery Kids. TBasic Plot: A description of the Lego Friends characters and how they interact.
This was another dry, non-fiction-esque treatise from Discovery Kids. There was no real story here, just biographical descriptions and a basic explanation of how one of the characters came to the city where the characters live. Not much to it. It's more text than pictures, but there are a lot of pictures for kids transitioning from picture books to chapter books.
These things are dry and test my patience. There's no real story and no dialogue at all, so they are very dull to read. My son is still obsessed with all things Lego, though, so he likes them, so I soldier on....more
Basic Plot: This is an explanation of how chi works in the Chima world of Lego, along with the story of how fire chi was discovered and why.
This was aBasic Plot: This is an explanation of how chi works in the Chima world of Lego, along with the story of how fire chi was discovered and why.
This was a long book for a kids' book. My son has discovered the section of Lego books in the public library, and I have a feeling I'm in for more scratchy throats and interminable non-fiction-esque descriptions of Lego stories. I almost long for the TV-show adaptations he used to prefer. *sigh* Okay, it wasn't really that bad. It was REALLY long, though. At 60-something pages, most of which were actually filled with more text than picture, it tested even my son's endurance. They did try to break things up by breaking up the book into different sections, interspersed with some shorter splash pages that were kind of cutesy and from certain character perspectives.
I continue to find the Discovery Kids books dry as heck, though. Even the cutesy splash pages didn't have much voice to them, even though they were theoretically from character perspectives. The story part of the book read like a history text, with explanations only and no dialogue. It dragged. A lot. And the story bit was after the non-fiction-esque explanation of how chi works. My son loves Legos and Chima, and even he was starting to fade by the end of these. If your target audience can't handle it, then who is supposed to, really?
I know I'm going to read more of these because of the nature of life and my son's obsessions, but I really wish they could find a way to bring some more actual storytelling technique and style to these books....more
Basic Plot: Dad goes out to get milk for his children and has an adventure before making it home.
This book cracked me up on pretty much every level. IBasic Plot: Dad goes out to get milk for his children and has an adventure before making it home.
This book cracked me up on pretty much every level. It was a funny story on its own, with Neil Gaiman's wit and whimsy to back it up. The illustrations for the book, though, made it even funnier. The pen and ink line drawings added just enough madcap antics to illustrate the adventure. They also make this a great book to read for a child who is transitioning from picture books to chapter books.
Basic plot: Midge, Barbie, and Teresa hunt down the notorious pirate Red Beak!
*stands up* Hello, I'm Kat and my 7-year-old son is addicted to Barbie fBasic plot: Midge, Barbie, and Teresa hunt down the notorious pirate Red Beak!
*stands up* Hello, I'm Kat and my 7-year-old son is addicted to Barbie fiction and videos. *sits back down* Mind you, most of the time I don't care. I don't think toys should be gendered. Toys are toys. Some of the Barbie stuff makes my feminist brain want to shut down and gibber in a corner because it's so inane and UN-empowering. Some of it is pretty progressive and makes me happy. This book was pretty middle-of-the-road.
There was really no characterization. Not that I expect a whole lot out of a kids' chapter book, but still. No characterization. I take that back- Teresa wants to be a nurse. That's what passed for characterization here. The plot was decent and non-sexist, if a bit implausible. I suppose that should get a pass as it uses the dream deus ex machina, but still. Historical fiction, even for kids, needs to have the scent of truth to it, and this one barely does.
I think my son was expecting more pictures in the book than he got. There were a few spreads of Barbie dolls dressed up in early 1700s clothing, which I found pretty cool, actually. But there weren't nearly the amount of pictures he's used to, and the book was much longer than he's used to. To his great credit, though, he paid attention to the whole thing, even when he was clearly getting tired towards the end. The story had staying power for him, certainly. We'll see whether he wants me to read it again tomorrow night....more
Basic premise: A book to read to small children, which has no pictures.
It isn't lying, either. There are no pictures. There are creative uses of colorBasic premise: A book to read to small children, which has no pictures.
It isn't lying, either. There are no pictures. There are creative uses of color and font to emphasize silly onomatopoeia. The whole premise is that when adults read a book to a child, they have to read every word, no matter how silly. It was fantastic, creative, and like nothing I've ever seen before. I think my son would like to hear me read this very silly book. I must confess, though, that I cheated and read it at Barnes and Noble while he was playing with the train table and thus not paying attention to Mommy who was giggling at a book she spotted on an end stand. While I am normally a staunch advocate for good art in kids' books, this one gets a pass for good reason. It is, after all, the whole point of the book....more
Basic Plot: A homeless girl in medieval England finds her place in the world and her purpose.
The situation of the poor girl at the beginning of the boBasic Plot: A homeless girl in medieval England finds her place in the world and her purpose.
The situation of the poor girl at the beginning of the book about tore my heart out. Homeless children are a particularly hard thing for a parent to bear. This story was simple, but the meaning of it is what is really important. Alyce (the name she chooses for herself, as she had none at the beginning) really has nothing, not even pride, at the beginning of the story. She is abused by everyone around her because of her situation, until the local midwife offers her food in exchange for work. She becomes the midwife's apprentice and endures. Now, as I said, it's the message that's important. The only reason Alyce survives is because she KEEPS TRYING. In spite of her terrible situation she never gives up and she always keeps going. The midwife says she needs someone who "can do what I tell her, take what I give her, who can try and risk and fail and try again and not give up." So much in life depends on sheer, stubborn persistence that this is a vital lesson for anyone to learn. That this book teaches it to young people is valuable.
I highly recommend it for any child of this age struggling with the idea of trying and failing. Failure is how we learn, so it's something we all must experience. It isn't fun, but it's very important. We have to remember that most of the time we can fix our mistakes and keep going, but not if we let ourselves get shut down by our failures.
I remember reading this one and re-reading it many times when I was a kid. A very enjoyable read loosely based on the connection between birds and dinI remember reading this one and re-reading it many times when I was a kid. A very enjoyable read loosely based on the connection between birds and dinosaurs. Trust me, you'll get it if you read it. A fun book, even for a non-dino-crazy girl....more
I like this book more for a funny thing that happened to me than for the content. The book was good- a cute, little fantasy story- but nothing that'llI like this book more for a funny thing that happened to me than for the content. The book was good- a cute, little fantasy story- but nothing that'll really be remembered over time the way The Chronicles of Narnia or The Lord of the Rings will.
I was in 5th or 6th grade when a parent in the school system where I went to elementary school threw a fit about this book at a school board meeting due to two words contained therein: "slut" and "damn." Both words, I should note, were used in context (historical in the case of "slut" and non-cursing in the case of "damn"). This book was in the elementary school's library, and she thought it was an inappropriate book. My father was reading this in the newspaper and started complaining about the state of books in our school's library, getting all self-righteous about the whole thing. I listened to him for awhile, then finally heard the title of the book. I quietly left the room and retrieved the book from the bookshelf in my room, then returned and handed it to him. (oh, the look on his face...)
Well, clearly the self-righteous rant ended there, as he found out I'd had the book for years. Then I found the words in question, and discovered their contextual nature. My dad never had another word to say about what I did or didn't read, and I can't recall him ever saying anything about a book being "questionable" in a library again. :)...more