Author: cvegnad

Marvel Amazing Powers Book Review

Marvel: Amazing Powers is a level 3 Reader for children beginning to read alone. 

About Marvel Amazing Powers

Whose suit is reinforced with the metal Vibranium? Who loves climbing up walls? Who has unlimited strength? Discover these answers and all the amazing powers of your favourite Marvel Super Heroes. Meet the Guardians of the Galaxy, Spider-Man, Thor, The Hulk, Black Widow, Captain America and many more!

Marvel: Amazing Powers is a level 3 Reader for children beginning to read alone. It combines DK’s four-level reading program with the ever-popular Marvel comics, helping kids learn how to read–and learn to love reading. Featuring high-quality images from the Marvel comics, Marvel: Amazing Powers was created in consultation with literacy experts. Young readers will learn about Wolverine, Black Panther, Ant-Man, and Wasp, as well as many more awesome heroes. Discover their extraordinary abilities, and remember, evil Super Villains are lurking just around the corner.

Our Thoughts

Marvel Amazing Powers brings all of your favourite Marvel characters, good and bad, and key events in one place.

We love the Marvel series, they are strong, funny characters who struggle with important moral decisions that can save the world. While they have these amazing abilities, they are also human with matching emotions that so many of us can relate to. We always set aside time in our busy schedules to watch the new releases, re-watch movies and episodes when they are shown on cable. We each have our own favourites for different reasons but each one is incredible in their own way.

This book looks at a wide range of characters including: Spiderman, Captain America, Black Panther, The Wasp, Captain Marvel, Black Widow, Scarlet Witch, The Guardians of the Galaxy and so many more. It even include some of the top villains, including Ultron and Thanos. I liked how the book even includes key time periods in their lives, including the Surtur Saga and the road to Civil War. We learn about each character, some of the facts you may have already known but some may be new to you (I never knew Black Panther married the woman who would later become the hero Storm!). Each character has roughly one page dedicated to describing their past and their accomplishments and one page dedicated to illustrations. The story was engaging and exciting as we worked through each character. It was perfect for our young reader to read to his parents with a great balance of imagery to keep him engaged. This has become a favourite book for us to read daily and we have even organized a new binge watching schedule for the Marvel movies.

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon and Chapters Indigo.

About the Author

Catherine Saunders is an author and editor who has written several licensed books and readers, including LEGO Friends Character Encyclopedia, LEGO NINJAGO: Team Ninja, LEGO Friends: Let’s Go Riding!, and Star Wars: Obi-Wan Kenobi, Jedi Knight.

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Amazing Animal Journeys Book Review

Kids will learn all about animal migration with this fascinating book.

About Amazing Animal Journeys

Kids will learn all about animal migration with this fascinating book. Whether flying or walking, animals are constantly on the move! Join different animals on their exciting travels as they seek out food, shelter, and warm weather. You won’t believe how fearless and strong these brave creatures are!

Stunning photographs combine with lively illustrations and engaging, age-appropriate stories in DK Readers, a multilevel reading program guaranteed to capture children’s interest while developing their reading skills and general knowledge.

Our Thoughts

Are you looking to expand on the current e-learning situation we as parents are finding ourselves in? Or perhaps looking to go in a new direction? Keep your child entertained and learning with Amazing Animal Journeys.

Animals are incredible and this book focuses on one of the most amazing journeys animal make – migration. Animals migrate for many reasons (give birth, find food, escape cold weather), and your child may have seen this happen without really understanding it (the Canadian geese heading South for the winter). This book looks at four specific animals that migrate in North America: caribou, Monarch butterflies, Gray whales and snow geese.

Each of the four sections dedicated to an animal gives us a brief background of the animal, where they live and where they migrate to and why. The book then dives right in following the animals migration monthly, where they travel to and what they face on their journey.

We loved learning about these four animals and the journey they go through. We had never heard of snow geese, who make their home on Baffin Island and really enjoyed learning about how they raise their young and travel South to stay warm during the summer months. We learned many new facts about how the animals raise their young, their predators and were amazed at how far they travel and how many months they go without food! The young animals make very long journeys at such a young age, reminding you just how amazing and strong animals are. At the end of the book, several pages are dedicated to how humans can be harming these animals by taking over their habitats, drilling, oil spills and more.

Beautiful pictures and great facts can be found in this engaging book all about the migration journey of four animals. This is a great resource to start your child learning about migration, animals and how we may have an impact on these animals without realizing it (not to mention what we can do to help stop this).

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon and Chapters Indigo.

About the Author

Liam O’Donell is a Toronto-based educator and author of books and graphic novels for young readers. His many titles include DK’s Amazing Animal JourneysWest Meadows Detectives series, and Tank & Fizz books. 

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions are my own.

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The Nightjar’s Promise Book Review

iRead Book Tours

As they search for “The Nightjar’s Promise” and the truth surrounding it, Carolina and the FIGs come face to face with evil that threatens to destroy not only their genius, but their very lives.

About The Nightjar’s Promise

Jennifer Torres, one of the three FIGs (Females of Intellectual Genius) who is a genius in both music and art, is the last to leave the closed rehearsal for her upcoming performance over Thanksgiving break at Carnegie Hall when she hears something in the darkened Hall. Recognizing the tilt of the woman’s head and the slight limp of the man as they hurry out an exit door, she realizes it is her parents who were supposedly killed in a terrible car accident when she was 15 years old. Devastated and feeling betrayed, she sends a text to Carolina and the other two FIGs—THURGOOD. It is the code word they all agreed to use if ever one of them got into trouble or something happened that was too difficult to handle. They would all meet back at Carolina’s bungalow at Wood Rose Orphanage and Academy for Young Women to figure it out.

As soon as they receive the text, because of their genius, Dara starts thinking of words in ancient Hebrew, German, and Yiddish, while Mackenzie’s visions of unique math formulae keep bringing up the date October 11, 1943. That is the date during World War II when the Nazis—the Kunstschutz—looted the paintings of targeted wealthy Jewish families and hid them away under Hitler’s orders. And as Carolina waits for the FIGs to return to Wood Rose, she hears warnings from Lyuba, her gypsy mother, to watch for the nightjar, the ancient name for the whip-poor-will.

As they search for “The Nightjar’s Promise” and the truth surrounding it, Carolina and the FIGs come face to face with evil that threatens to destroy not only their genius, but their very lives.

My Thoughts

I fell in love with this group of strong, intelligent young women. Each one has had a difficult past but instead of letting this define them, they embrace what makes them special and support each other through all of their ups and downs. Each of the young women carries a special gift – arts, language and math. Combining these skills with the guidance, connection and love from their teacher, Carolina, they can be unstoppable. They use these special gifts to help solve their past and the current mystery in the novel.

In this novel, Jennifer is presented with a huge mystery – what really happened in the deaths of her parents, could they possibly still be alive? And if so – how could they just leave her, did they not love her?? As she pulls from her own strengths and the strengths of her friends, terrible secrets unfold along with a plan to regain what was lost so many years ago. We are taken down a path of darkness and pain but along this path, we find glimmers of hope, strength and kindness.

This is an excellent short story for young adults and adults who like an interesting, suspenseful read. You can read the novel on its own but I would recommend reading the rest of the novels in this series. We are given enough of the history of each of the young girls and Carolina’s family but to really gain a better understanding of their past, it is best to read each of their stories (bonus – you will not be disappointed). I loved the build up of the story and how we uncover Jennifer’s family history and how this was connected to the looting of arts from World War II. I loved how their friendship, their unique skills and their strength is highlighted throughout the novel. While they are strong individually, they need each other in order to solve the mystery (a great reminder that we are always stronger together!). This is a novel that does not disappoint.

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon.

Rating: 4.5/5

About the Author

Originally from Carrollton, Illinois, author/agent/publisher Barbara Casey attended the University of North Carolina, N.C. State University, and N.C. Wesleyan College where she received a BA degree, summa cum laude, with a double major in English and history. In 1978 she left her position as Director of Public Relations and Vice President of Development at North Carolina Wesleyan College to write full time and develop her own manuscript evaluation and editorial service. In 1995 she established the Barbara Casey Agency and since that time has represented authors from the United States, Great Britain, Canada, and Japan. In 2014, she became a partner with Strategic Media Books, an independent nonfiction publisher of true crime, where she oversees acquisitions, day-to-day operations, and book production.

Ms. Casey has written over a dozen award-winning books of fiction and nonfiction for both young adults and adults. The awards include the National Association of University Women Literary Award, the Sir Walter Raleigh Literary Award, the Independent Publisher Book Award, the Dana Award for Outstanding Novel, the IP Best Book for Regional Fiction, among others. Two of her nonfiction books have been optioned for major films, one of which is under contract.

Her award-winning articles, short stories, and poetry for adults have appeared in both national and international publications including the North Carolina Christian Advocate Magazine, The New East Magazine, the Raleigh (N.C.) News and Observer, the Rocky Mount (N.C.) Sunday Telegram, Dog Fancy, ByLine, The Christian Record, Skirt! Magazine, and True Story. A thirty-minute television special which Ms. Casey wrote and coordinated was broadcast on WRAL, Channel 5, in Raleigh, North Carolina. She also received special recognition for her editorial work on the English translations of Albanian children’s stories. Her award-winning science fiction short stories for adults are featured in The Cosmic Unicorn and CrossTime science fiction anthologies. Ms. Casey’s essays and other works appear in The Chrysalis Reader, the international literary journal of the Swedenborg Foundation, 221 One-Minute Monologues from Literature (Smith and Kraus Publishers), and A Cup of Comfort (Adams Media Corporation).

Ms. Casey is a former director of BookFest of the Palm Beaches, Florida, where she served as guest author and panelist. She has served as judge for the Pathfinder Literary Awards in Palm Beach and Martin Counties, Florida, and was the Florida Regional Advisor for the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators from 1991 through 2003. In 2018 Ms. Casey received the prestigious Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award and Top Professional Award for her extensive experience and notable accomplishments in the field of publishing and other areas. She makes her home on the top of a mountain in northwest Georgia with her husband and three cats who adopted her, Homer, Reese, and Earl Gray – Reese’s best friend.

You can connect with her on her website, and Facebook.

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Disclosure: I received a digital copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Gone With the Rogue Book Review

The sinking of the Salty Dove took her husband’s life—but it didn’t drown Julia Fairbright’s courage to endure. 

About Gone With the Rogue

The sinking of the Salty Dove took her husband’s life—but it didn’t drown Julia Fairbright’s courage to endure. She creates a proper life for herself and her young son. But now, the ton’s most notorious rogue is back, and how he makes Julia feel is anything but proper. She can’t deny the desires he awakens in her, even though she knows that the handsome devil will surely break her heart.

Garrett Stockton owns a successful shipping company and is rumored to have a woman on every continent and half-a-dozen in England. The truth, however, is that Garrett has but one mistress: the wide open sea. That is, until he meets Julia, whose spirit of independence matches his own. What begins as a flirtatious battle of wits turns far more passionate than either of them could have imagined. Suddenly, Garrett’s only desire is to sail into the sunset with Julia as his wife and young Chatwyn his son. But she won’t take his hand—how can he convince her that his love is real and his heart is hers?

My Thoughts

Gone With the Rogue is the second installment in this series but is a novel that you can read on its own. I would recommend reading book one, it is a great novel and gives you a better insight to the characters history and connections. That being said, you will still be able to appreciate the story and follow along without having read book one.

In the opening of the novel, we are introduced to Julia. Julia is a widow with a young son, who is being controlled by her Father in law. She lives with the fear that she may lose her son at any time, a real fear especially during these times with the way women were viewed and treated. She loves her son more than anything else in the world and would do anything to ensure that he feels loved, protected and safe. She even sacrifices her own happiness and freedom to do so. That is until she discovers a secret that could set her free – her only problem, how does she prove the secret?

Enter the dashing Garrett, who has built himself quite the reputation whether it was fairly deserved or not. He is immediately attracted to Julia – he not only wants to protect her but to remind her how wonderful and deserving she is of her own happiness. When she goes to him for help, together they launch a plan to help secure her freedom and future. But will they succeed? Will their pasts come back to haunt them? Can they fight against the constraints of society?

This is a fun novel with some serious undertones of this time – the plight of a widowed Mother, the treatment of those deemed less worthy in society and a power imbalance. We are rooting for Julia to not only find her freedom and independence but to also find love that will not put her in a cage but instead celebrate who she is. It is well written, easy to read with well developed characters that you want to see succeed.

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon.

Rating: 4/5

About the Author

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author AMELIA GREY read her first romance book when she was thirteen and she’s been a devoted reader of love stories ever since. Her awards include the Booksellers Best, Aspen Gold, and the Golden Quill. Writing as Gloria Dale Skinner, she won the coveted Romantic Times Award for Love and Laughter and the prestigious Maggie Award. Her books have sold to many countries in Europe, Indonesia, Turkey, Russia, and most recently to Japan. Several of her books have also been featured in Doubleday and Rhapsody Book Clubs. Amelia is the author of over twenty-five books, including the Heirs’ Club trilogy and the Rakes of St. James series. She’s been happily married to her high school sweetheart for over thirty-five years and she lives on the beautiful gulf coast of Northwest Florida.

Disclosure: I received a digital copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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The Mountain Lion at Crab Lake Book Review

The third book in the Crab Lake Tales series, The Mountain Lion at Crab Lake will teach you the importance of not judging someone by their appearance, and of embracing those things that make us unique.

About The Mountain Lion at Crab Lake

There is a newcomer at Crab Lake this winter, big and fierce and intimidating. He is a mountain lion, and none of the creatures of Crab Lake – nor Jeannie – have ever met an animal like this, and they’ve never been so nervous. Where did he come from? Why is he here? Is he dangerous? Some of the animals think so, but Jeannie is brave, and wants to welcome Mr. Mountain Lion to the lake even though his large paws, long white teeth and bright yellow eyes are a little scary.

The third book in the Crab Lake Tales series, The Mountain Lion at Crab Lake will teach you the importance of not judging someone by their appearance, and of embracing those things that make us unique. Discover who Mr. Mountain Lion really is and revisit Jeannie s enchanting world in The Mountain Lion at Crab Lake!

Our Thoughts

In this third book, we return to the beautiful surroundings of Crab Lake and their wonderful animal inhabitants. We once again meet up with the adorable and funny animals that call this place home. They are each unique in their own way, with quite the personalities (my personal favourites being Pudgey and Belknap Beaver) that will make you smile.

In this book, they turn to Jeannie for help when a mountain lion appears in their home! They have never seen a mountain lion before and are understandbly quite afraid. Mountain lions are large, with great big teeth and a reputation for eating other animals. The animal friends are scared and afraid that this particular one has come to their area to do harm but how do they find this out without upsetting and hurting the mountain lion’s feelings? Jeannie is determined to help the animals find a solution and protect all members of Crab Lake – new and old.

This was a beautiful story that helps children (and some adults too) understand why we should not judge others based on their outwards appearance. It is so important to not judge others based on what others think is true but instead get to know that person. In this case, everyone believed that this mountain lion is fierce, mean and only wants to eat every animal insight. What they learn though is a story that will touch your heart. It is so important for young children to learn that everyone has a story that has gotten them to where they are. Each story is unique and has shaped us into the person we are. It is so important to stop and learn the story of those around us – this makes us a stronger community and better people. This is a beautiful story with an important message delivered to children in a funny and engaging manner.

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon.

About the Author

For David Mulford and his wife, Jeannie, Christmas would not be complete without their visits to the beautiful Wisconsin waters of Crab Lake. These magical journeys provide the inspiration for David’s whimsical tales. In addition to writing, David has a PhD from Oxford University, serves as a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institute at Stanford University, and has enjoyed a long and notable career in international finance and diplomacy. For the last twenty-seven years, David’s Christmas gift to Jeannie, no matter where they are in the world, has been a story of Christmas at Crab Lake. This is the first such tale. When not traveling, David and Jeannie reside in Paradise Valley, Arizona.

Disclosure: I received a digital copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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