The best part about Waldo books is that they are so iconic. As much as I loved them in childhood, I love them even more as an adult, especially since...moreThe best part about Waldo books is that they are so iconic. As much as I loved them in childhood, I love them even more as an adult, especially since I can now share the ultimate frustration of trying to find a certain character with my own kids.
I always get excited when I see a Waldo book being released. How many different ways can I find the characters? What new frustrations await me? In Where's Waldo? The Magnificent Mini Boxed Set, all the drawings are tiny and you get a cool magnifying glass! The difficulty level has definitely increased and I found myself having a little trouble locating Waldo even though these are the same scenarios from the previous editions.
I would recommend this edition for veteran Waldo finders, as younger children may get easily disheartened at not being able to find the characters as fast as they could with the other Waldo books. My 5-year-old in particular quickly gave up in her search on her own and only showed slightly more patience when I helped her. The magnifying glass, on the other hand, was a huge hit with my kids!
However, for those looking for more of a Waldo-finding challenge, this is a great book to get your neurons working! It's the perfect activity for a rainy day or if you are craving a bit of nostalgia.
A copy was provided for review from the publisher via YABC.(less)
At this point, I consider myself a Waldo expert. I have found him in almost every adventure, along with his stripe-shirted comrades. No, he's no match...moreAt this point, I consider myself a Waldo expert. I have found him in almost every adventure, along with his stripe-shirted comrades. No, he's no match for my superior searching skills that have been carefully honed since the ripe age of 7. I have even spotted the fellow in real life.
You may bow to my Waldo Finding Skillz.
This edition is no exception. It has new adventures to keep you up, screaming "Where the is Waldo?!" late into the night. Ahhh, the memories Waldo leaves in his wake. This is the perfect gift for your Waldo-Finding friend or family member. It even comes with a poster of Woof!
I was provided a copy for review via YABC. I was not paid for this review. I genuinely am a Waldo fanatic all by myself. (less)
This is by far my favorite Waldo edition! All seven books are bound in this travel sized book, perfect for long car rides, waiting in lines or air pla...moreThis is by far my favorite Waldo edition! All seven books are bound in this travel sized book, perfect for long car rides, waiting in lines or air plane rides. Unlike Where's Waldo? The Magnificent Mini Boxed Set, the adventures aren't too small that you'd need assistance finding Waldo. Unfortunately, I still struggle with World of Waldos, Waldo: The Musical and World of Woofs. Those are easily the most difficult adventures to locate Waldo.
Other things I love about this edition:
1. The elastic bookmaker - This is one thing I wish the other editions had, but since this book is smaller, it works better in this format.
2. The sturdy, bendable cover - I love how this cover feels like a cross between a hardcover and paperback book. It could survive the love of a few kids and still maintain its practicality for flipping through the adventures.
3. Checklists: I was happy to see that the flip-out checklists were also included in this edition. The only thing is that the checklists only appear at the first adventure for each book. So, you'll have to flip back and forth to check off the found characters/items as you search. This works out better than having the checklists on each page. Otherwise, it would be too bulky.
Overall, if you are a Waldo fan, this edition is a must have.
I was provided a copy from the publisher for review via YABC.(less)
Let's see if I can write this review without calling this book ridiculously cute!
Janie Jane is one lucky little girl who gets puppy one day on her bir...moreLet's see if I can write this review without calling this book ridiculously cute!
Janie Jane is one lucky little girl who gets puppy one day on her birthday, Sir Yips-a-lot. The two are a happier than two pigs in a blanket and are inseparable until Janie Jane's birthday rolls around again and she's given a kitty as a present, Lady Meow-Meow. Janie Jane's attention begins to shift from her first pet to the newest. Lady Meow-Meow is the "shiny new toy" and Sir Yips-a-lot stars feeling the beginnings of jealousy.
My kids and I really enjoyed this book. The artwork was in comic book style, sometimes with arrows showing the sequence of pictures. It made it easier for my kids to follow along and understand the story. Not to mention the illustrations were just SO CUTE! :D
I also loved the message and believe Cute & Cuter would be the perfect book to read to a child expecting a new sibling who may feel left out during the adjustment period of an expanding family. It would be a great opportunity for a child to open up about their feelings and for the child to be reassured that he/she is not forgotten.
The only downside to Cute & Cuter is that now my daughter seems to think she's owed a puppy, kitty and an octopus. I blame Janie's parents for buying so many cool presents!
I remember looking for Waldo with my mom and dad as a young kid, pouring over the book for hours. Now that I'm older and have my own kids, I can say w...moreI remember looking for Waldo with my mom and dad as a young kid, pouring over the book for hours. Now that I'm older and have my own kids, I can say with full confidence that this is the type of book that never gets old. It's still fun and becomes even more so when introducing it to a younger generation.
The artwork in Where's Waldo? The Fantastic Adventure is still as amazing and complex as I remember. I admire the skill and time that went into crafting every puzzle in the book, hiding the clues in just the right spots. It also has handy checklists for you to keep track of all the clues you've found, which definitely came in handy.
I read this book with my 5-year-old daughter several times and she thoroughly enjoyed finding the clues. They weren't overly difficult for her, but still challenging enough to keep her (and me!) attentive and searching over and over. The only puzzle we encountered difficulty was with The Land of Waldos, the last story in the book. The goal was to find him amongst hundreds of look-a-likes AND find his missing shoe. We did find his shoe, but Waldo himself eludes us constantly!
Final Verdict: Waldo is still as charming and captivating now as he was back in 1989 when it was first published. Young and old readers will find this edition a perfect book to enjoy together or apart.
Would you believe me if I said this book tells the story of my life? It totally does, and because of this, I feel I have a special appreciation for th...moreWould you believe me if I said this book tells the story of my life? It totally does, and because of this, I feel I have a special appreciation for this short, yet funny little book. The artwork is very colorful and really does a great job at encompassing all the duties motherhood has to offer.
What I really loved was the fact that the mom manages to take care of all her responsibilities at home with her kids, at work and her children (who narrate) understand that. Through the kids' narration, you get a sense of wonder and fascination from their over all the amazing things their mom can do everyday and how they interpret it. When their mom does the laundry, they see this as her taming ferocious beasts. While their mom makes them breakfast, they see this as her being a maestro. And their mom manages to do all this and more... in heels (or stilts to them)! You can really feel the admiration the kids have for their mother.
This book features hard pages, which is awesome for those with younger children, like myself, who love to put any and everything in their mouths, from flip flops to books. It makes for easier page-turning for the tots. I always love these books best simply for their durability, knowing they have a better chance of survival against the whim of my children.
I'd recommend this one for moms with kids ages 0-5 or even early readers since it is features fairly simple words and is short.
5 Year-Old Thoughts: "Awesome book!"
And there you have it from the mouth of a babe. Awesome book.(less)
This book is very adorable with its concept of lost toys. It reminds me of Toy Story in a way since each toy clearly has a distinct voice and personal...moreThis book is very adorable with its concept of lost toys. It reminds me of Toy Story in a way since each toy clearly has a distinct voice and personality, portrayed with different fonts. Parents will find this story perfect for creating "voices" during story time.
What I love best is that it's a story of a story. The lead toy, Wonder Doll, tells the toys a story of an alien to distract them from their fear of the dark. The fun part for kids is guessing if her tale was real or make believe. I'd recommend this for family reading time for toddlers and older children. (less)
There are so many lessons to be learned in the pages of Bluebird from bullying, loneliness, dealing with loss and letting go. I'm so very impressed wi...moreThere are so many lessons to be learned in the pages of Bluebird from bullying, loneliness, dealing with loss and letting go. I'm so very impressed with how Staake manages to weave all of these points together in only 40 pages with pictures alone.
Bluebird follows the story of a young boy who is friendless and the victim of bullying at school. He's excluded from group recess activities and teased in class. Meanwhile, a small bluebird watches the boy and proceeds to follow him after school releases. A friendship between the two is forged and it's put to the test during a tension-filled ending.
Bluebird really surprised me with the fact that I didn't think it would be so deep. I expected a usual picture book along with text to read out loud to my daughter. Instead, Bluebird is told entirely through beautiful illustrations shaded in black, white and blues. Each page is also broken into smaller panels to depict the next part of the narration and the passage of time. I was immediately taken with style because it reminds me of children's graphic novel, but much more simplified. However, my 5-year-old had difficultly understanding what was taking place in the book because it's not a style she is used to. In fact, the first thing she said when we started reading was, "Where are the words? I need the words!" So it's a bit of a learning curve for younger readers, but what the narration lacks in simplicity makes up for with the fascinating illustrations.
The ending to Bluebird also surprised me and I'll admit to not realizing the severity of what transpired until after I went back and re-read the blurb. It seems like the ending is set up in two ways. Based on interpretation and readiness of the reader, the bluebird can be seen as either suffering a non-fatal injury or ultimately dying. This was a very clever and makes the book appear more universal to all readers despite age.
Final verdict: Bluebird is an unexpected gem and touches on tough issues in a very delicate way. It's the perfect book to use as a gateway for open discussion about loss to a younger reader, and moving story about letting go for all.
Monster Town didn't seem to hold my attention as well as I thought it would despite the very original premise. I do think that a child in the targeted...more Monster Town didn't seem to hold my attention as well as I thought it would despite the very original premise. I do think that a child in the targeted age group would enjoy this story. (less)