The Girl That Loved Wild Horses is a beautiful story, told through words and images, both unique and special. Not only has Paul Goble created a timele...moreThe Girl That Loved Wild Horses is a beautiful story, told through words and images, both unique and special. Not only has Paul Goble created a timeless story but has portrayed the love and understanding this book tells through one of kind pictures, so unique he won the Caldecott Award (1978) which was well deserved.
An Indian girl "understands horses in a special way" that no one else does. Every morning she leads the horses to water and watches over them when they are sick. While out with the horses a storm causes them to become lost. After the storm is over she runs into a "strong and proud and more handsome than any horse she had ever dreamed of": a stallion. The stallion tells her that he is the leader of the wild horses and that they can live with them. She becomes part of the wild horses, in more ways than one.
This book is everything beautiful and gorgeous in every way. While the story is a folktale, it also promotes acceptance and tenderness. The images themselves tell their own story, beautifully created with bold and bright colors. This book is perfect for every age group. A must read for everyone!!(less)
The Snowy Day is the perfect book to read at the start of the winter season. The weather is finally cold and snow has finally arrived. The Snowy Day i...moreThe Snowy Day is the perfect book to read at the start of the winter season. The weather is finally cold and snow has finally arrived. The Snowy Day is told through simple words and simple images, yet the simplistic joy of playing in the first snow of the season is beautifully told. What child doesn't love to wake up to see a blanket of white covering the entire city? A playground awaiting!
Ezra Jack Keats uses the simplistic joys of snow to tell this story: snowball fights and snow angels. Keats' illustrations and use of color give you images that stand out, again using simplistic styling. Peter stands out against the snow in his red coat. Keats uses paper to convey different textures, a technique that is rarely executed beautifully.
There is nothing as simple yet beautiful than a child, as with anyone, enjoying the simplistic joys provided by nature. This is a must read for every child and adult who enjoy the winter season and all it has to offer.(less)
Owl Moon is another gorgeous Caldecott Award Winner. Jane Yolen's writing is in a form of poetry style, without a rhyming scheme. Yolen's writing styl...moreOwl Moon is another gorgeous Caldecott Award Winner. Jane Yolen's writing is in a form of poetry style, without a rhyming scheme. Yolen's writing style is simple yet each word is full of detail and meaning. Owl Moon is about patience and bravery. The main character is cold and scared while eagerly sitting on the edge to talk to the father and make an owl call, but knows that if fear and impatience is shown in any way, the owls will never call back.
"But I never said a word. If you go owling you have to be quiet and make your own heat."
Yolen describes the setting in such details that you feel like you are there...
"the snow below it [the moon] was whiter than milk in a cereal bowl"
When you read her descriptions of the pine trees, "black and pointy against the sky", you can sense the darkness they create surrounding you. Jane Yolen's images are the perfect compliment, full of rich, solid, and bold colors. Not only does Yolen tell you how dark it is within the pine trees, but shows you through her images, contrasting against the stark white snow and blue sky.
Jane Yolen's Own Moon is a gorgeous and wonderfully created Children's Book, perfect for the winter season. A must read! (less)
Reading The Name of the Star takes you back to Ripper London in the modern times. It was also like taking a trip back to London - Oh my Lovely London!...moreReading The Name of the Star takes you back to Ripper London in the modern times. It was also like taking a trip back to London - Oh my Lovely London! How I miss you! You can't help but want to read this book just on the synopsis alone! I have always heard great things about Maureen Johnson and her writing styles.... The Name of the Star is a perfect book, for someone unaware of Maureen Johnson, to get started on.
Rory is a wonderful character to read. I loved being in her head. She is fun, aware, quirky, funny, and real. You want to become her best friend right away. Through Rory, each person she encounters stands out very clearly and distinctly.
Maureen Johnson brings in reality, a bit of paranormal, thrill and mystery to the modern day. Bringing history to the present day with a paranormal twist sounds a bit daunting, but Maureen Johnson makes it seem easy and flawless. A must read for YA Paranormal fans!(less)
Time For Bed is a perfect bed time book for any child. Animals of all sorts are being put to bed by their loving mothers: little mouse, little goose,...more Time For Bed is a perfect bed time book for any child. Animals of all sorts are being put to bed by their loving mothers: little mouse, little goose, little cat, little foal, little fish, and even a little snake, and many more baby animals. Each baby animal is put to bed with a little rhyme, making it very easy for children who are reading the book themselves or are being read to, easy to understand and comprehend:
"Good night little foal, I'll whisper a secret but don't tell a soul."
Jane Dyer's illustrations also show the love present in this picture book as each baby animal is cared for by their parent, showing such a connection to children reading this book. This book is perfect for any parent wanting to read a wonderful and endearing book to their children as they go to bed. (less)
Amos McGee, a zookeeper, finds complete happiness in taking care and visiting the animals of the zoo. He spends time with each animal in different way...moreAmos McGee, a zookeeper, finds complete happiness in taking care and visiting the animals of the zoo. He spends time with each animal in different ways: racing the tortoise, reading stories to an owl who is afraid of the dark, talking to a shy penguin, and playing chess with an elephant.
One day Amos McGee gets sick and is not able to go to work. His zoo animal friends notice his absence and worry about him. Because of Amos McGee's unwavering friendship, they visit him at home and spend time with him, just as he has always done for them. The next morning, Amos McGee is much better, all from the simple acts of kindness and the simplicity of friendship.
Philip Stead's picture book is beautifully written and illustrated. It is hard to come away without a smile and a better understanding of love and friendship. (less)
Wow! Fantastic! Perfect! Exciting! Unexpected! I can go on but I think you get the point. The 3rd installment of Gena Showalter's Intertwined series i...moreWow! Fantastic! Perfect! Exciting! Unexpected! I can go on but I think you get the point. The 3rd installment of Gena Showalter's Intertwined series is one of the best reads of 2011 - you won't be disappointed, I PROMISE!
As with the previous installments, Gena Showalter has proven again she is the master at creating multiple plot lines and bringing them together without any confusion for the reader. From the first to the last page I was literally on the edge of my seat; I could not wait to read what was going to happen next and never wanted the book to end. To say I cannot wait for the 4th and final installment is one of the greatest understatements of this year, unfortunately we have to wait until 2013....
Compared to the two previous novels, Twisted is much darker. At the end of Unraveled the prophecy of Aden's death has come true, while Victoria attempts to save his life. Mary Ann has just run away to keep her new Drainer powers from killing her friends, most importantly Riley. In Twisted, we find that Aden is alive, but is greatly changed... he is a vampire with an unquenchable thirst for blood, and not just anyone's blood, but Victoria's. Riley is on the search for Mary Ann while Victoria is experiencing more and more human qualities...
Most of the book is divided between Aden's-Victoria's story and Mary Ann's-Riley's story. With Aden's new Vampire powers, he finds himself uncaring, unfeeling, mean, and ruthless.... almost too much like Vlad (who is still alive), but at times the real Aden resurfaces... or does it? Meanwhile, Mary Ann surges forward to find Aden's parents and the bodies to match Aden's souls in an attempt to keep her mind off of Riley. But alas, of course that doesn't really work.
There are many unexpected twists and turns. It is impossible to even come close in guessing what is going to happen next. New characters are introduced, new conflicts are created, and new emotions are felt. My heart fell and rose many times - this book is an emotional roller coaster in all the right ways. Gena Showalter's use of character development in this book alone is amazing, and when you couple it when the previous installments, it is superb. Every character, major and minor, are multi-dimensional, each closely tired to each other more than you may first believe.
The Intertwined series is a rare find in Young Adult literature, and if you have not read this series your life is a little paler without it. This is one of the few recommended reads of 2011 for everyone, not just Young Adult fans. (less)
I wasn't quite too sure what to expect from this book. I knew a possession of sorts would take place, but how and why I wasn't sure. Aimee has always...moreI wasn't quite too sure what to expect from this book. I knew a possession of sorts would take place, but how and why I wasn't sure. Aimee has always had dreams that predict the future, but only when people are going to get hurt. Aimee can also help heal others who are physically injured. Alan, a new member of the town, is not without his own 'traits' and 'quirks', originating in Native American traditions. And they both also have their own pasts, each with their secrets and fears. While Aimee's mother killed herself when she was younger, Alan has never known his father. Then there is the River Man. Aimee's town is haunted by mysterious and unexplained deaths that has happened for decades... Aimee finds out that she is connected to it all in a way she never could have believed.
Carrie Jones and Steven Wedel did a wonderful job in creating a unique story with unique characters to match. I loved how they intertwined Native American traditions into modern paranormal occurrences. I also am a huge fan of novels that are from multiple perspectives - you are able to get both sides of the story. Carrie Jones and Steve Wedel do just that. Additionally, each character is given their own unique voice instead of being carbon copies of each other. Emotional heart strings are definitely pulled in this novel - the loss of a mother, father, and the possible loss of friends and family members.
While overall I enjoyed this novel I do wish it was a bit more entertaining. Once you pass the first few chapters the novel itself does become a bit predictable. However, this predictability does not ruin the novel. One thing I did not like at all was Aimee's decision to break up with her boyfriend in the beginning of the novel. I agree that she needed to cut ties with him, but I feel it happened to quickly, without much, if any, development or real explanation. Beyond that, this novel was entertaining and recommended read, especially if you are a fan of Carrie Jones' Need series. (less)
When can you read short stories and novellas about your favorite characters by some of your favorite Young Adult authors all in one sitting? Now you c...moreWhen can you read short stories and novellas about your favorite characters by some of your favorite Young Adult authors all in one sitting? Now you can! Enthralled is the perfect addition to some of my favorite YA series. I constantly find myself wanting to know more about certain characters... Enthralled does just that. Sabine may be a literal nightmare in Rachel Vincent's Soul Screamers series, but in Enthralled you get to learn a little more about her human side as well as her past. Keenan, from Melissa Marr's Wicked Lovely series, is more human than ever in "A Mortal Winterl". These are just a few of the many stories you get to read. You get to read about Bean Shides, Vampires, and many more paranormal creatures.
There are many things that make this book wonderful. Instead of reading one type of style from one author, you get to read many different types of styles from many authors. Furthermore, you don't have to read each story in the succession they are given. You can jump around between stories at your own whim.
Enthralled is also the perfect introduction into authors you may not have read yet. I've walked away from this book wanted to read more about the Morganville Vampires and Jackson Pearce's books. For anyone looking for new authors or wanting to learn more about their favorite series and characters, you must read Enthralled. (less)