Category: DK Canada

The Wonders of Nature Book Review

Every page in the Wonders of Nature, reveals a surprising story from the natural world that you just won’t forget.

The Wonders of Nature

Discover the wonders of planet Earth and learn about some of the most amazing animals, plants, rocks and minerals, and microscopic life that live here.

The storybook descriptions and close-up images let you discover the myths and legends of living creatures and minerals, as well as key facts about their natural history. Find out how the prowling jaguar uses spots to avoid being spotted, why a sticky sundew means big trouble for insects, and what on Earth a radiolarian is. From opals to orchids and tapirs to toadstools, this beautiful collection brings more than 100 remarkable items from the natural world to life.

My Thoughts

This book blew my mind away – it is absolutely gorgeous when you pick it up. I loved the texture of the cover and the beautiful design and golden trim. It gives the book an almost whimsical and fairy tale feel to it. I was almost too nervous to open the book as I didn’t want to damage the outside. I would find myself tracing the design on the cover and back over and over as it is just stunning.

The inside of the book is just as beautiful as the outside. It has the same feel to the illustrations and the colours are soft, which suits the theme of the book well. I loved the introduction – ‘this book celebrates some of the millions of living things that call it home, as well as the rocks, fossils and other natural marvels that make up our world’. And this book truly is a celebration of all things in nature.

The book has four sections: rocks and minerals, microscopic life, plants and animals. We loved each section – my personal favourite was the plants section (loved learning about Dragon’s blood tree and Traveler’s Tree – both that I had never heard of before) and my son loved the animals (even learning some new animals like the porcupine fish and Gharial). Each featured item in each category had two pages devoted to it. I loved the large image contrasting with the smaller illustrations and factual quotes. Each item had two to three paragraphs dedicated to it and it blended in well with the illustrations, your eyes naturally followed both the story and imagery. There was a lot of thought put into the design, layout and theme in this book and it was well worth it.

This is a stunning book that you will love as an adult to have in your collection and perfect for the older child as they begin to appreciate nature and want to learn more. This would make an excellent gift for those who love the arts. I found myself wanting to sketch out the plants that were featured – they are just too beautiful for words. The Wonders of Nature is truly a celebration of the beauty and wonder in the world around us.

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon.

About the Author

Ben Hoare is an editor and author of books on nature and natural history, including Eyewitness: Endangered Animals, Trees and Leaves, and Pond Life. A fellow of the Zoological Society of London, his work can also be seen published in BBC Wildlife and Birdlife magazines, and on several BBC websites.

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

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Easy Keto Meal Prep Book Review

DK Canada

A cookbook that takes the guesswork out of keto meal prep planning, with over 60 low-carb recipes and 8 easy-to-follow weekly meal plans.

About Easy Keto Meal Prep

Eating keto can be challenging, and cooking keto recipes that are satisfying can be even more challenging! You need to make sure you’re eating enough fat to stay in ketosis, while still eating food that is satisfying. Weekly meal prep can help ensure that you stay in ketosis while still enjoying fresh, delicious, keto-friendly recipes that aren’t the same every week. With Easy Keto Meal Prep, planning and preparing your weekly keto meals has never been easier!

Each recipe in Easy Keto Meal Prep includes specific macro ratios and detailed nutrition information to ensure you’re always eating the right ratios to stay in ketosis. With over 60 delicious recipes, you’ll enjoy a large variety of recipes and never grow tired of eating the same recipes again and again. Eight weekly meal plans offer a broad range of recipe combinations to ensure you’ll never have to eat the same week of meals twice, and each prep plan includes detailed shopping lists, step-by-step prep day instructions, and handy equipment lists to help you prepare a week of meals in just a few hours. Also included is helpful guidance for eating keto and sticking with the diet, meal prepping like a pro, and safely storing your prepped meals.

My Thoughts

Roughly four years ago, I made massive changes in my life to lose over a hundred pounds. I changed the way I looked at my diet, what I ate and how active I was. I was (and still am) very proud of how far I came and how I struggled but succeeded.

What I couldn’t be prepared for was the mental battle that came afterwards and how hard it is to maintain that type of weight loss. In the last six months, I have regained fifteen pounds due to poor food choices and lack of exercise. I have no excuses – I have been lazy and lax in my ways, making up excuses that my regain isn’t that bad.

Over the holidays, I did some research on how to kick start back into my weight loss and getting physically fit again. I lost a lot of my weight following a high protein, low carb diet – so keto isn’t new to me. What I struggle with is variety, so that I don’t get bored and don’t return to an unbalanced diet or struggle with meal planning.

This book cotains over sixty recipes along with weekly meal plans. He includes all of the macro breakdowns, shopping lists, equipment lists and even how to start your prep day plan. The prep day plan has to be my favourite feature – prepping for a week can be daunting. To have someone tell you what order you should start each item, set them aside and so on is a lifesaver!

The recipes themselves are very easy to follow – ingredients are listed to the left and instructions on the right. The instructions are very easy to follow, direct and to the point. You can usually complete the recipe in five to six steps. He also includes tips for almost every recipe, which is super helpful for those who are not huge fans of cooking and meal prepping. Aaron breaks down the nutrition content for you, and I can’t stress how important it is to track your meals and every bite you take. It is amazing how quickly calories and carbs add up!

This is an excellent resource and cookbook for those new to keto and those who are returning to the lifestyle. There are recipes that all individuals will enjoy (my husband and eldest enjoyed the spicy pork taco bowls, we just adjusted the recipe for our son) and are easy to make. You don’t have to go out and buy ingredients that you will never use again as so many items you will either already have or purchase weekly. Aaron makes the keto diet easy to understand, prepare and follow. A definite must have for those who want to start keto or those who need new ideas.

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon.

About the Author

Aaron Day is the author of Keto Sweet Tooth Cookbook and an accredited nutritional therapist and advanced sports exercise nutritional advisor. He has a passion for health and nutrition, and as an advocate for the ketogenic diet and keto lifestyle he’s the recipe developer, food photographer, and videographer behind the popular FatForWeightLoss website where he creates and shares delicious ketogenic recipes that are comforting, quick, and simple to make.

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

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Sports Legends Book Review

DK Canada

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to stand on an Olympic podium having just won a gold medal? Or what it takes to become a record-breaking soccer player? Find out all about sports stars and their inspiring achievements in this nonfiction book for kids.

About Sports Legends

Perfect for young sports lovers, this chapter book for kids tells the stories of a range of different sports people who have risen to the top of their game. From Usain Bolt, to Steffi Graf, and Muhammad Ali, to Ellie Simmonds, in Sporting Greats readers will learn about the unique stories of these athletic heroes.

Sporting Legends is a new Level three title in the four-level DK Readers series, aimed at children who are beginning to read alone. Developing a lifelong love of reading, DK Readers cover a range of subjects to support children as they learn.

Packed with fun facts, this series of guided reading books balance amazing photography with non-fiction narratives tailored to specific reading levels. DK Readers are assessed on both Fountas & Pinnell and Lexile levels, and are ideal for learning to read while building general knowledge.

Sporting Legends covers a topic that will inspire and educate kids, encouraging reading for pleasure, which is linked with improved reading and writing abilities, as well as a wider vocabulary and greater self-confidence.

Our Thoughts

We are HUGE sports fans in our home – you can always find us watching sports (soccer is very much the number one match to be on) or playing sports. It is how we bond, how we have fun and how we keep physically fit together.

It can sometimes be hard to find a book topic that your child loves, especially if you have a reluctant reader. Our eldest was this way when he was younger, we had to really search for books that would engage him and were on a topic he would like.

Sports Legends covers some of the greatest athletes of all time from all types of athlethic backgrounds – from track to the court to the field and to all seasons. Many names you will know but some you may be newly introduced to.

My youngest loves Pele – we watched a documentary on him a few years ago and since then he has looked up to him with all that he had accomplished at such a young age. It was fantastic to learn that he played for his country at the age of 16! Which is a goal that he himself is working towards. We learn about more incredible athletes and the sucess they had including: Jackie Robinson (first African American player in the MLS), Wasim Akram (Pakistan cricketer), Richie McCaw (New Zealand rugby player), Ma Long (Chinese table tennis player) and so many more.

The book contains photos of the athletes in motion along with short bios and descriptions of their biggest achievements. The book itself has a great flow – starting with field sports, sports on court, track and field and then other sports. In between chapters, are sections on young stars, record breakers and winter sports athletes. There is even a quiz at the very end of the book! It is written in a way that your child (or yourself) can easily read aloud or an older child can read on their on.

This is a great learner book for young children, especially those who have a hard time finding books that they can engage in. My son’s only complaint? He wanted the section on Messi to be longer!

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

About the Author

Caryn Jenner writes and edits a variety of books for children of all ages, including both fiction and nonfiction. For DK Publishing, she has written Eyewitness Workbook: Earth, as well as several titles in the DK Readers series. Her picture book, Starting School, was one of the eight books longlisted for the UK’s 2012 School Library Association Information Book Award in the Under 7 age group. Caryn also teaches English to speakers of other languages and volunteers at a local school. She grew up in the United States but has made her home in the UK for many years.

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

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Complete Massage Book Review

DK Canada

Want to really understand the health and wellness benefits of massage? Interested in practicing massage at home or considering taking a course? Let this be your guide on everything from effleurage to epineuria.

About Complete Massage

Annotated anatomy and physiology illustrations show you how different levels of pressure work the muscles, and the profound effect massage can have on the nervous system and on cardio and lymphatic health.

Learn how to prepare physically and mentally, and get the lowdown on oils and massage beds, diffusers and candles. And if you’re receiving a massage, find out why drinking water before and after is important and how focusing on breathing enhances muscle relaxation.

All the core strokes and massage techniques that form the foundation of massage practice are shown photographically with detailed annotations and integrated arrows showing the direction and application of pressure.

Familiarize yourself with the key disciplines, from Swedish to shiatsu, reflexology and hot stone therapy. Access over 30 bespoke massage sequences, tailored to treat specific complaints and special client groups, such as pregnant women, babies, and those recovering from surgery.

Become an expert in the simple but profoundly effective power of touch and share its miraculous health benefits.

My Thoughts

I love massages – I think they bring such an inner peace and relaxation on top of the physical benefits of pain relief. I love receiving massages but I also love giving massages too. If I could go back in time, I would have definitely completed a RMT program after my Kinesiology degree. It is just great practical application of the things that you learn in a very rewarding manner. How can you not love helping people feel better?!

This book is an excellent resource for the many, many different types of techniques, disciplines and even how to target specific areas during treatment. The book starts off with a basic introduction to the human body, including the musculoskeletal system, nervous system, lympathic system and circulatory system (all very important systems to understand at the basic level for the purpose of this book). The book then jumps into basic techniques during massage therapy, including strokes, vibration, pressure and passive movements. I recognized many of the techniques that have been used on me during treatment which I thought was pretty cool, this included the slide and glide strokes (so soothing!). What is extremely helpful is that the book also helps you put those techniques together because it is great to know each method but the how you apply it, is just as important. They help you put this all together in a section called, The Whole Body Massage.

The book also contains all the different specialties and I was amazed at how many there were. This included some familiar ones and some not so much such as, Biodynamic massage, manual lymphatic drainage, Ayurvedic massage, Chinese Tui Na and Shiatsu. My personal favourites were the facial rejuvenation massages, it was so relaxing.

My youngest frequently suffers from sore leg muscles (over use from soccer and running) and I loved that I could implement some of the techniques that I learned in the book in order to help him. I felt confident performing these minor massages to help decrease the pain he felt and improve his range of motion. It left me with that feel good feeling that I was able to help him with his pain and can be of help for future pains.

This is an excellent resource for those who want to learn more about massage therapy, perhaps those who are interested in a future career in this field or those who want to provide calming relief for their kids and partner at home.

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

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

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Spooktober with DK Canada: Fairy Tales, Myth and Magical Beasts

DK Canada

October is the month of magic, myth, scary stories and tall tales. It is also my favourite time of the year! I love learning about myths, legends and fairy tales. I enjoy sharing this passion with my children and I know that they love hearing these stories as well.

DK Canada has two fantastic books that you can fall in love with this month that will delight, engage and and teach: Children’s Book of Mythical Beasts & Magical Monsters and A First Book of Fairy Tales and Myths.

Children’s Book of Mythical Beasts and Magical Monsters

Discover the adventures of heroes and monsters that exist in the world of mythical and magical creatures.

Stories have been told on every continent since the dawn of time. Some have lasted for thousands of years, becoming what we know today as myths. These fantastical tales educate by creating amazing worlds and inhabiting them with wondrous feats of heroics and dastardly deeds of evil.

Mythical Beasts & Magical Monsters gives children the opportunity to discover these stories, and encourages them to understand storytelling from different cultures.

This book takes readers around the world and in time to teach them about myths, legends and folklore. We learn about who the characters are, their story and the adventures they take.

We start off exploring nature and nation – how early people tried to understand themselves, the world around them and how the universe began. One of my favourite stories in this section, was the Japanese myth around the creation of the universe that began with two gods, Izanagi and Izanami. There was even a section on how create sound effects to go along with this story to make it even more engaging for younger readers. In Magic and Mayhem, it examines how people explained the unexplained and tried to understand why good and bad things happened. I loved the section on the crafty tricksters – especially Saci Perere from Brazil who had the power to appear and disappear, leaving many things wrong in his wake. We also learned about Baba Yaga, the Russian Witch, whose name we had heard of in a movie but had never looked up prior to this. Talk about a scary tale! Finally we have Quests and Battles, where they examine the legendary heroes of cultures. The warriors who overcame great obstacles to achieve heroic deeds. You may know some of these names – Berserker, Thor, Odin, Lord Vishnu, Ganesha. They even had a section for warrior heroines (yay!).

This is a beautiful, well organized and illustrated book that will delight readers of all ages. We learn so much more about the popular stories we have heard in passing and in movies along with many new characters. I loved that the book took us on a journey around the world – not favouring one particular region or type of story.

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

A First Book of Fairy Tales and Myths

Two beautifully illustrated books about myths and fairy tales combined in one slipcase to make the perfect gift for young children.

This two-volume set is a collection of well-known myths and legends and classic fairy tales from around the world. A First Book of Myths includes classics such as the Fall of Icarus, Andromeda, How Butterflies Began, and the Crocodile and the Baby. Mary Hoffman’s lively narratives and the delightful illustrations capture the worlds full of gods and monsters. In A First Book of Fairy Tales, Mary retells 14 classic children’s fairy tales, including favorites such as Cinderella, Jack and the Beanstalk, and the Little Mermaid. The charming illustrations bring the best-loved fairy tale characters and events to life.

These two beautiful books come in their own slipcase package and are gorgeous (I almost didn’t want to open them they looked too perfect). One book focuses on fourteen myths and legends and the other on fourteen fairy tales. The fairy tales include: Cinderella, Rapunzel, The Little Mermaid, The Frog Price and Diamonds and Toads to name a few. The myths and legends book included: The Golden Touch, A Newborn Warrior, How Butterflies Began, Rama and Sita plus many more. I was familiar with a few of these titles but some of these were new to me, which is always fantastic.

The stories in both books were easy to read out loud and perfect for young readers to follow along and engage. You can read it one story at a time or several stories together at night before bed. The illustrations are beautifully done and feel warm and welcoming (versus dark and scary like the previous book). We thoroughly enjoyed these two books and strongly feel this would make an excellent gift for young readers any time of the year.

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

About the Author

Author Mary Hoffman is a popular children’s author with more than 90 books to her name. Her unique observations bring vitality and humour to each of her stories, including A First Bible Story BookAmazing GraceA Twist in the Tail, and Song of the Earth.

Disclosure: I received the books above in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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