I enjoy reading books about the past, but most of what I've read in both children's and adult books has focused on the American experience. So I was t...moreI enjoy reading books about the past, but most of what I've read in both children's and adult books has focused on the American experience. So I was thrilled to hear about this book. Kubla Khan was a man of contradictions. A just ruler under most conditions, his armies destroyed many villages, massacring any who refused to become part of Khan's growing empire. It was interesting to read about Kubla's mother who was determined to have her children make a mark in the world and did everything in her power to provide them with a chance to do so.
Clearly a man of great intelligence and leadership ability, Khan left a mark that can still be seen in Asia today. One thing I found especially fascinating was how involved in his life, his mother, and second wife were. In a time where women were seen as inferior and incompetent, these women had a big impact on Khan's life, personal and professional. The book is too long for a short read-a-loud, but there is plenty of detail for discussion.
The illustrations are very detailed as well as colorful and bright. The illustrations compliment the text beautifully. I highly recommend this book for those who enjoy reading about the world. (less)
I enjoyed reading and sharing this book. Not only is the language simple and straightforward, but the illustrations compliment the writing perfectly....moreI enjoyed reading and sharing this book. Not only is the language simple and straightforward, but the illustrations compliment the writing perfectly. The illustrations are bright and colorful and highlight the similarities and differences between the two boys. I've really come to love collage as an art form and this book demonstrates the characteristics that make collage so unique. I had a fun discussion with a group of kindergartners about the different materials used in collage I had a fun discussion with a group of kindergartners about the different materials used in collage and how that effected the feel of the book. It was great.
It was interesting to listen to the comments of the children as they looked at the pictures illustrating some of the differences between the places that Elliot and Kailash live. The elephant on the same street as cars, pedestrians and carts especially caught their attention. This book provides a nice way to introduce to children the idea that people in other places are both the same and different as they are.(less)
I'll say right off that I am a huge Grace Lin fan. I enjoy the bright colors she uses in her artwork. Her style works especially well for this book ab...moreI'll say right off that I am a huge Grace Lin fan. I enjoy the bright colors she uses in her artwork. Her style works especially well for this book about colors. The predominant color on each page is the one being highlighted, but she uses differing shades so the pages stand out. The color being highlighted is obvious, but not too obvious. I also really like the ending that shows a wider perspective including some of the colors and places mentioned on previous pages. This book provides a delightful reading and seeing experience. (less)
This is a fun book about specific buildings/structures from around the world. Not only does Laroche highlight the building but he asks a questions abo...moreThis is a fun book about specific buildings/structures from around the world. Not only does Laroche highlight the building but he asks a questions about each one, such as who's inside or what's inside. This gives the reader a chance to infer who would use or what the building would be used for. I enjoyed trying to figure each one out. Some of the structures are well known, such as the Parthenon or Independence Hall, but others were new to me, such as the Petrona Towers or the Buddha's Palace. I appreciated the map included at the end showing the location of each structure. The illustrations are primarily cut paper collage and they are incredible. I looked at each illustration and imagined the many hours spent on each the details of each page. I highly recommend this book for sharing, it would make for some great discussions about different places and buildings around the world.(less)
The problem with reading ARCs is that the book is unfinished. When I first started reading this the writing seemed awkward and I had a hard time getti...moreThe problem with reading ARCs is that the book is unfinished. When I first started reading this the writing seemed awkward and I had a hard time getting around it. But a few chapters in, I realized that that awkwardness likely does not exist in the final version, and that despite the trouble I'd had at the beginning, I was really starting to get into the story.
Jonathon, Tallie and Severino quickly become sympathetic characters that I cared about. Their experiences and feelings became important to me as I read further. I also found it interesting that the 'bad guys' stories are told along with the main characters until all the characters meet up. I especially found it fascinating the way the author implied certain things about the character Ryan, but she never directly said what I found myself assuming. A reminder that assuming can be a dangerous thing, as Jonathon, Tallie and Severino discover to their detriment.
I found the plot fascinating and not just because the story occurs in my state. Archeology is a fascinating field and full of mystery. It became clear that the author had done her research, which is something I always appreciate. For me, accuracy in terms of science or history is an important part of such stories. I enjoyed learning more about the history of the area where I live and found the information integrated beautifully with the story. I didn't feel like it slowed the story down at all. Instead it intensified my feelings about what was happening and why it happened.
I recommend this book to those who enjoy an intense, informative adventure with a nice dose of character development.(less)
I enjoyed this book very much. With plenty of action the book moves quickly and would be perfect for reluctant readers. The characters are interesting...moreI enjoyed this book very much. With plenty of action the book moves quickly and would be perfect for reluctant readers. The characters are interesting and believable, the plot is focused and intense, and the setting is vivid. The only thing I had a problem with was that I wanted more, more details about the characters and the setting, and more story. I wanted to know more about what happens to Mira and Remy. Of course this happens with a lot of stories, you get attached to the characters and hate to say goodbye. I do recommend this to all who enjoy a quick, intense read. If all historical fiction was written like this, I think more children would read it.(less)
These short stories are absolutely thought-provoking and unlike anything I've ever read. While only one of the six has what one might call a 'truly' h...moreThese short stories are absolutely thought-provoking and unlike anything I've ever read. While only one of the six has what one might call a 'truly' happy ending, that just make the stories feel all that more real. There is a element of fantasy in each story which changes the main characters situation but at the end of each story I was left wondering if the changes were for better or worse. The consequences of choices made and actions taken really makes one think. I doubt there are many people who haven't made a wish about something. What if that wish came true, what might the consequences be? Or how would things in your life change if you simply had more self-confidence? Is is magic or something else? These stories would be great for classroom use because there is much to discuss, in addition to choices, there could be discussions on being true to oneself, culture, family relationships, kindness, and obsession. I recommend this book for all those who want a quick, but thought-provoking read. (less)