Sunday, July 28, 2013

Top Ten New Series for Kids

Well, as promised, this week I am giving you my list of my favorite new series.  In some cases only the first book is out and in other cases, you get a taste of the second installment but these are series that hold a lot of promise.  They are the ones I am most excited about and if their future installments are anything like their debut, then all these series should have a long run.

10. Spy School by Stuart Gibbs

Stuart Gibbs has turned into one of my son's favorite authors.  Both his Spy School and Belly Up series are full of action and intrigue.  They really are can't put down books for Grades 4-6.  In Spy School our main kid character has been recruited to the CIA's Academy of Espionage, however all is not as it appears.

9. Crogan's Adventures by Chris Schweizer

This series was nominated as the best publication for kids by the Eisner Awards, the Oscars for graphic novels.  If your kids like history with action and adventure thrown in then this series is perfect for them.  The book tells of Crogan's descendants, who appear in many significantly historical times. are quite the prolific characters.

8. Timmy Failure by Stephan Pastis

My son has described this series as a cross between Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Calvin and Hobbs.  With its deadpan humor and 1,500 lb polar bear your kids will reread this one over and over again.

7. Worst-Case Scenario: Ultimate Adventure

I am cheating a bit with this series since there are already a few out.  These are a remake of the Choose Your Own Adventure books of the past.  Kids learn about Everest, Mars and deep sea diving and they select the way the story will go.  Great for reluctant readers of kids who love adventure.

6. Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales by Nathan Hale

This is one of my favorite new series.  Nathan Hale manages to make history both interesting and entertaining and his graphic novel approach is so well done.

5. A Tale Dark and Grimm by Adam Gidwitz

Adam Gidwitz manages to make the Grimm fairytales both terrifying and hysterically funny all at the same time.  Staying true to the stories roots, he brings in an acerbic narrator who adds levity and perspective to the tales we know so well.

4. The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy

Didn't you ever wonder what our Prince Charmings thought about their role in the well know fairytales?  Well it turns out they aren't too happy with the way they are being portrayed and they are taking steps to change that.

3. The Candy Shop War by Brandon Mull

This book started out as a stand alone story, but the response was so favorable that Brandon Mull followed it up with an even better sequel!  Magic candy, nefarious magicians and a treasure that could be used for great evil all are the makings for a wonderful series.

2.  Jinx by Sage Blackwood

This book emerged as one of my favorite new novels of 2013.  Jinx is such a likable character and this book has magic, adventure and lots of action.  I can only hope that the next book in the series lives up to this one.

1.  The Ascendance Trilogy by Jennifer Nielsen

With both the fist and second books out, this series has not missed a beat.  A brash and sarcastic king with a heart of gold is the hero of our story.  The action and suspense in the book make it one you won't be able to put down.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Crankee Doodle for Picture Book Friday

Happy Friday!  This week in a rare turn of events, I have a picture book from one of my favorite chapter book writers, Tom Angleberger.  Sometimes when authors try different genres, their efforts are not always successful.  I am happy to report that in this case the result is a a resounding win!  But I guess Tom's earlier work did have picture book elements to it (remember Origami Yoda) so he gets the whole visual element thing.

This book had my kids smiling from ear to ear.  Enjoy!

Title:       Crankee Doodle

Author:   Tom Angleberger

Target:    Preschool- Grade 3

What this book is about:
You know the song:

Yankee Doodle went to town
a-riding on a pony,
stuck a feather in his hat
and called it macaroni.

Well, if you ever thought the song was as ridiculous as most people do, then you are not alone.  Turns out Yankee Doodle was no fan of it either.  In this book we learn that he didn’t really want to go to town, he thought feathers on his hat were silly, and as for people calling it macaroni ... well he didn’t even like macaroni.  Now lasagna is a different story ....

Why I love this book:
From the author of the Origami Yoda series and Fake Mustache I would expect nothing less than silly in the best possible way!   

The beginning of this story is perfect as Yankee Doodle declares how bored he is and then proceeds to reject every idea presented by his horse.  My daughter and I go through this ritual daily (me offering up things to do and her telling me they are boring,) so we both got a great chuckle from it.  Although I realize as I write this that I am the horse in this story, but in this case the horse is very good looking and intelligent .... and creative and thoughtful! 

This book is a wonderful read aloud.  It is so easy to play the parts and kids will absolutely love it as Yankee Doodle tries to “talk sense” into the horse who continues to confound him!   Of course in the end horse gets his way, despite a giant temper tantrum from Crankee Doodle.

Who this book is for:
Great for all kids.  I would absolutely start off by presenting the original song to the kids as some of the younger ones may not be familiar with it and the best humor in the story depends on it.

Final thoughts:
I will never sing that song with the mindless abandon I once did!

To purchase this book, click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Crankee Doodle  A portion of each purchase goes to support this blog at no cost you.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Top Ten Middle Grade Series

With summer in full swing, I thought I would post my favorite book series for kids in grades 4-6.  I have chosen to focus on established series that have at least a trilogy of books, since the terrific thing about summer is being able to follow a story from book one all the way to (in some cases) book thirteen   I hope they inspire your kids to read, because summer is a perfect time to kick back with a great story.

It wasn't easy to pick ten, but I felt these were quality books that had the most universal appeal and were good summer reads.  I also decided not to include the most well known series such as Harry Potter or The Lightning Thief because, well, you already know those don't you?

In the upcoming weeks I will provide my list of best new series, because there are some great things out there!  But sadly any resolution to those new series may still be years away!

So without further ado:

10. The Secret Series by Pseudonymous Bosch.

All the kids I know can't get enough of this series.  The first page declares "Do not read beyond this page!"  Oh come on, who can resist that?

9. Genius Files by Dan Gutman.

Dan Gutman is one of those tried and true children's authors who never dissapoints.  This series happens to occur over summer vacation, making it the perfect summer read.

8. A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket.

This is one of those series that has been out of the limelight the last few years.  I had forgotten how great it was until my daughter found our old copies and was hooked.  These books are still great fun!

7. The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart.

This series is wonderful for the thinking child who likes puzzles.  In fact the book starts off with an ad asking "Are you a gifted child looking for special opportunities?"

6.  The Winnie Years by Lauren Myracle

These are wonderful girl books that take a fun and real view of growing up.  Winnie is endearing and authentic enough to appeal to kids.

5. Charlie Joe Jackson by Tommy Greenwald

These books have been my go to for the relectant readers for the last two years.  Tommy Greenwald has three boys and he knows how to write to his audience.

4. The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall

This is good old fashioned storytelling, with modern sensabilities at its best.  A series about four sisters which will feel nostalgic but never out of date.

3. Book of Embers by Jeanne DuPrau

For kids who like distopian fiction but may be too young for Maze Runner or Hunger Games, The Book of Embers fills a wonderful niche.  This series will make your kids think.

2.The Sisters Grimm by Michael Buckley

This series was created before retelling Grimm fairytales was in vogue.  Buckley is a great storyteller and kids will never look at fairytales the same way again.

1. Ranger's Apprentice by John Flanagan

This series just ended its run last year so kids will be able to take the story to its final conclusion.  These books are well written, move at a good pace and are full of adventure.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Count the Monkeys For Picture Book Friday

I must start out by saying I am a big fan of Mac Barnett.  I had the opportunity to take Mac out to lunch after a book talk he did at our school.  Ok, perhaps "take out" is stretching it a bit, but dragged kicking and screaming doesn't really have the same ring to it.  He talked a bit about the book I am profiling today and I want to share some of that conversation with you.  The parentheses represent my thought bubbles and if there were actual illustrations in this blog it would be so much cooler.

Mac - "I am coming out with a new picture book next year."

Me - "Wonderful!  What is it about?" (He must think I am pretty great to tell me about his new book.)

Mac - "It's a counting book"

Me - "Great!" (Lame)

Mac - "Kids get to count the monkeys."

Me - "Fun" (Lamer)

Mac - "But there are no monkeys in the book."

Me - "Awesome!" (Awesome!)

As always, Mac does not disappoint.  His books, like his presentations, are these lovely performances for kids that they can replay over and over again.  Bravo Mac!

So without further ado, let's count the monkeys ... not!

Title:       Count the Monkeys

Author:   Mac Barnett

Target:    Preschool - Grade 3

What this book is about:
Well this is a counting book, and you can certainly count the mongeese, the crocodiles, the grizzly bears and the lumberjacks, but good luck finding a monkey in this story.  It seems that the characters on each page have simply scared off the inhabitants of the page before until we run out of pages in the book!  

Why I love this book:
I am a sucker for a book that gets kids involved.  If I can get a child cheering, yelling or flapping their arms I’m in (especially if they do all three at the same time!)  Your kids will be: voting on the correct plural term for more than one mongoose (I’m not kidding,)  saying “thank you” very politely (I’m really not kidding,) growling, banging pots and pans and high fiving fictional characters - how great is that.  You see, there is always something required to turn the page to help us get rid of whatever is scaring away those monkeys.

Who this book is for:
Kids who like to laugh and parents who enjoy reading a story that gets kids involved.

Final thoughts:
There is some monkey business going on here!

To purchase this book, click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Count the Monkeys  A portion of each purchase goes to support this blog at no cost to you.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

You Don't Want to Miss These Summer Books for Kids

I do notice every year that I have a summer slowdown in July and August.  Perhaps it is because everyone is soaking up the sun on some exotic beach somewhere.  Perhaps it is because the parents who read my blog are so prepared that they got their kid's books back in June and head out fully engaged to meet their kid's summer reading needs.  Well whatever the reason, you just don't visit me as often.

I try not to take it personally ... but I start to wonder.  Are my witty remarks just not cutting it, are my book choices too serious for the summer months, does my breath smell? Strike that last one, I have superb oral hygiene.

Well whatever the reason, I am still here bringing you the best books I can find to get your kids excited about reading.  Any guilt?  A little teensy bit?  No, the fact you care about books gets you off the hook.

So this week I am doing a potpourri of books.  I try to expertly theme my weeks and give you three choices.  But I find that at the end of a period I have stragglers ... great stories that just didn't fit into any category but that I think your kids will love.  This week I am giving them their chance to shine.  Now just think, if you hadn't read me during the summer, you would have missed these.  Laud that over your friends who haven't stopped by!

Title:       Athlete vs. Mathlete

Author:   W. C. Mack

Target:    Grades 4-6

Series:     This is the first book in a planned series

What this book is about:
Twins Owen and Russell have their roles.  Owen is the jock who loves basketball.  Russett is the mathlete who does well in school and competes in Master of the Mind tournaments.  When the new basketball coach insists that Russell, who has a huge height advantage, try out for the team, both brothers think it is an exercise in futility.  However, it turns out that Russell’s ability to shoot means he will be a star player.  Can the brothers adjust to these new roles?

Why I love this book:
First off the story is told in the alternating voices of Owen and Russell.  I always love books that do this, because I think it really benefits kids to see both sides of an issue and helps them to develop empathy.  At times Owen is really struggling and his jealousy and anger felt very real.  I also appreciated Russell’s struggle with managing his many activities.

The books kind of let me down when it dealt with Russell and his Masters of the Mind team, but I think that only adults will really notice that flaw in the writing.  Kids should be very engaged in the basketball story and the conflict between the brothers.

Who this book is for:
Great for kids with siblings and a nice basketball story for kids who like sports books.

Final thoughts:
The title and cover for this book are just great!  I love it when they get it right.

To purchase this book, click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Athlete vs. Mathlete (Athlete Vs Mathlete (Quality))  A portion of each purchase goes to support this blog at no cost to you.

Title:       Poison

Author:   Bridget Zinn

Target:    Grades 4-7

Series:     No

What this book is about:

Kira is a sixteen year old potions master.  When she realizes that her kingdom is in trouble, she believes the only course of action is to kill the princess, a childhood friend.  When her poison dart misses the princess (and she never misses!) she must go on the run, but not so she can leave the kingdom, so she can try again to save it.  Along the way she acquires a pig and a human companion Fred, neither of whom she likes at first.  However, as they grow on her, she realizes she needs them both to complete her mission.

Why I love this books:
Besides a few editing issues, I found this book a fun ride.  The action is non stop and the twists and turns keep coming.  The cover, at first glance, makes this book look a little more serious than it actually is.  However, when you see the cute little pig popping out from the bottom corner, you realize that there will be some whimsy and humor involved.

While the action in the book was good, the story always felt lighthearted to me.  I think this was by design.  Fred, Kira’s companion, provided some humorous banter and I liked that Kira was a smart, kick your tushy kind of girl.

Who this book is for:
Kids who like action but nothing overly dark.  Also, if you like an enchanted pig, this is your book.

Final thoughts:
The author passed away before her novel was published.  It is truly a shame she couldn’t see how well her debut novel has been received. 

To purchase this book, click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Poison  A portion of each purchase goes to support this blog at no cost to you.

Title:       The Unfortunate Son

Author:   Constance Leeds

Target:    Grades 5-8

Series:     No

What this book is about:

Set in the 1400s, Luc is born with only one ear, and his father is so cruel to him that he becomes an apprentice to a fisherman in the village.  The fisherman’s home is filled with love and friendship and just as he begins to feel this is were he is meant to be .... he is stolen by pirates and sold into slavery in Norther Africa.  Will he ever make back home and realize his true identity and purpose?

Why I love this book:
This book is surprisingly well written.  It was one of those can’t put it down types of books, but when I finished it and thought about the story, I realized that there really was very little action.  This would have concerned me, but my eleven year old, action loving son, read it first and told me how great it was.  So, in this case the suspense of the story and the strong writing are more than enough to make it a great read.

I also very much enjoyed the historical aspects of the novel and the look at Islamic culture and education at the end of the dark ages.  It really was quite enlightening.

Who this book is for:
There are simpler themes surrounding responsibility and loyalty and larger themes around education and the self worth that kids must be older to really understand.

Final thoughts:
The Unfortunate Son has an unfortunate cover, and proves to be the book’s one failing.

To purchase this book, click on the following link to connect to Amazon :The Unfortunate Son  A portion of each purchase goes to support this blog at no cost to you.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Truck and Train Books Say Goodnight

Now I know that right before bed is prime reading time.  This is a special opportunity to bond with your children, to cuddle and share, and to get those kids to sleep so you can finally have some time to yourself!

The best picture books for this prime reading time .... ones that make your kids want to fall asleep!  A great going to bed book will help them relax, make them realize that the end of the day is at hand, and send them off into the quiet zone where no more bathroom trips, glasses of water or sheet adjustments are required.

This week I am profiling two great going to bed books for kids who love trucks and trains.  These books are so good that your kids might actually ask to go to bed just to hear them ... well perhaps I exaggerate, but they are really good!  They are from the proven team of Rinker and Lichtenheld, who I hope are making beautiful books together for many years to come.

To see another favorite bedtime book of mine, visit my previous post Sleep Like a Tiger.

Title:       Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site

Author:   Sherri Duskey Rinker

Target:    Preschool - Kindergarten

What this book is about:
The day is ending on the construction site and all the trucks are getting ready to sleep.  The story follows the activities of each type of truck (crane, cement mixer, bulldozer and excavator) as they finish up their work and prepared to go to bed.

Why I love this book:
First off the cadence of this book is lovely and it makes reading it quite rhythmic which is lovely for a going to bed book.  Each segment ends with the refrain "Shh... goodnight, (appropriate truck) goodnight"

I also adore the illustrations by Lichtenheld.  They are fun and charming.  Crane has his nightlight and teddy bear, cement mixer his blanket and bulldozer's dirt bed looks just like a comfy pillow.  I also enjoy that each truck has a face which gives them personality. These pictures will suck you in!

But I also love that the book shares some of the activity that the trucks do during the day.  It makes it the perfect story where kids can appreciate the differences in the truck's functions, while still not rilling them up, but calming them down before bed.

Who this book is for:
Any young child who loves trucks!

Final thoughts:
I would have had this book memorized in a matter of days if it had been out when my boys were young!

To purchase this book, click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site  A portion of each purchase goes back to support this blog at no cost to you.

Title:       Steam Train, Dream Train

Author:   Sherri Duskey Rinker

Target:    Preschool - Kindergarten

What this book is about:
Evening has come, and the steam train is being loaded for the night.  Each different type of car  is being filled with the appropriate playthings:  Boxcar - toys, Tankers - paint, Gondola - sand and sand toys, Auto Track - race cars ... etc.  When all is filled the train takes off for dream land.

Why I love this book:
The format for this book is different from Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site, where each truck went to sleep.  Here each different railway car is filled with the appropriate cargo before bed.  I point this out because it is not simply a copy of their previous book but with trains, which is what some readers may expect, I know I did.  I found the format a little more awkward than their earlier book, but I think that just may be that my expectations were wrong.

This one I had to read a few times before I "got it" but when I did I found it to be quite fun and lovely.  The candence is again well done and provides a very relaxing prose.  Kids who love trains will appreciate all the different train cars that are included, I mean I have two boys and even I hadn't heard of a Well Car.  Also a nice way to talk to kids about putting away their toys!

The illustrations by Lichtenheld are so well done, and I hate to compare the two books, but I thought the faces on the trucks provided their earlier book with just a little more personality.

Who this book is for:
Kids who love trains, will really appreciate this story.  Parents who want to encourage their kids to pick up before bed, will also like this book.

Final thoughts:
There is a train phase my boys went through were this book would have been read ragged, had it been written yet.   Why is it all the best stuff comes when your kids are too old for it?

To purchase this book, click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Steam Train, Dream Train  A portion of each purchase goes back to support this blog at no cost to you.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Does the Gender of the Main Character Really Matter?

With summer in full swing, I thought I would repost some of my older recommendations.  These books are wonderful reads and it has been so long since they got some love, they are probably quite new to most of my readers.  Enjoy!

Does it matter if the main character is a girl or a boy?  All too often we say that "boy" books can be read by girls and boys alike, but "girl" books are only for a female audience.  I understand this on some level.  There aren't too many boys who are drawn into a book called "Puppy Place,"  it just doesn't interest them.  However, a great story is a great story and the books I have chosen this week are just that.  The main characters may be girls, but the stories are adventurous, the heroines are strong and skillful, and they are supported by a cast of interesting characters.

Although I didn't realize it until I had compiled the books, they are all historical novels and this may be why, despite female leads, they work so well for either sex.  Their challenges and adventures mirror the struggles of the time and not the gender of the character.  Whether you have a boy or a girl, I hope they have the chance to enjoy these thoroughly engaging books, although I understand if it is a stretch for your sons!

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Title:          Theodosia and the Serpents of Chaos
Author:      R. L. LaFevers
Target:       Grades 3-6
Series:        Yes
What this book is about:
Theodosia lives at her parent’s workplace, the London’s Museum of Antiquities.  She has the unique ability to sense the curses that are tied to specific Egyptian artifacts.  Her parents are quite unaware of her gift, and so she is constantly “saving” them without their becoming the wiser.
In this story a particular amulet is brought to the museum that could destroy the British Empire, and Theodosia’s unique skills take her on quite an adventure as she attempts to neutralize the curse.  The story takes place at the beginning of the 20th century so it is a fun period piece with some historical references brought in.
Why I love it:
The cover of this book sucked me in right away.  I am at the mercy of great illustrations!  Thankfully the story was just as fun.  I really enjoy a great girl character, who is clever, independent and self sufficient.  The School Library Journal described her as a combination of Nancy Drew and Indiana Jones, which truly hits the nail on the head! 

I must say that I found this book didn’t engage me until about three chapters in, so please stick with it.  Once the story gets going it is hard to put down. 
Who this book is for:
Kids who love a good adventure story.  In this story, Theodosia is taken into a secret society, and they treat her as a serious partner in solving the mystery.  I know kids will enjoy a bright child outwitting adults who appear utterly clueless to what is going on.
Final thoughts:
Having trouble with ancient curses, Theodosia to the rescue!

To purchase this book, visit your local bookstore or click here: Theodosia and the Serpents of Chaos

Title:          The Diamond of Drury Lane

Author:      Julia Golding
Target:       Grades 4-7
Series:        Yes
What this book is about:
This is a period book, set in the 1790’s.  It tells the tale of “Cat” Royal, an orphan who is raised in a London theater.  A diamond is hidden in the theater which Cat takes the responsibility of protecting.  It is her interactions with street gangs, performers and high society, as she protects the diamond, that lead to an action packed adventure!
Why I love it:
I read this book a few years ago and loved it.  I picked it up again a few weeks ago, and was thrilled to find I enjoyed it just as much the second time around.  The author really gives you sense of London life in the 1790’s with enough action and suspense that makes the book hard to put down.  
I have the version with the original cover.  I was very disheartened to learn that they changed the cover to show a girl representing Cat on the front.  The new cover really makes this look like a girls book, which it is NOT!  The main character is a girl, yes, but there are some terrific male supporting characters and the story is not gender specific in the slightest.  My 12 year old son got so caught up in the story he started taking the book in the car with him.
This book  did win the Gold Nestle Children’s Book Prize in the UK. 
Who this book is for:
Anyone interested in historical fiction with a huge dose of action and adventure.
Final thoughts: 
The secondary characters are what make this book a gem.  From street thugs and aristocrats who sneak off to box, a political cartoonist named Captain Sparkle, to a former African slave who is a violin prodigy, they elevate the story to a delightful level.

To purchase this book, go to your local bookstore or click here: The Diamond of Drury Lane (Cat Royal Adventure)

Title:          Hattie Big Sky

Author:     kirby larson
Target:      Grade 4-8
Series:       There is a wonderful follow up book, Hattie Ever After
Newbery Honor Book
What this story is about:
Hattie is a sixteen year old girl, whose parents died when she was young.  She moves around from relative to relative, no one really wanting her.  Finally a long lost uncle leaves her an unproven claim to property in Montana.   She makes the move and begins her life as a homesteader.  Along the way she learns about herself and what home really means.
Why I love this book:
Ok, I admit it.  I loved Willa Cather in high school, so a story about a girl conquering the flat land of Montana is right up my alley.  Bring in my Norwegian heritage and my family who raised cattle in Nebraska and I was going to love this story from the start.  Thank goodness it didn’t disappoint me!
This book was so well written, and I loved that Hattie was such a strong female character.  She is quite mature for her age, and Larson has surrounded her with a wonderful host of characters.  Even the villain in the story is not all bad, and we are able to see him as a fully developed individual.  
Larson’s grandmother was a homesteader, so the book is filled with authentic references and the story moves at  an engaging pace! 
Who this book is for:
Anyone who wants to learn about homesteading during World War I.  It is a wonderful book for children to see what life was like for these individuals, not that long ago.
Final thoughts:
This is wonderfully written book which will give children perspective.

To purchase this book, go to your local bookstore or click here: Hattie Big Sky

Friday, July 5, 2013

Want to Be in a Band? for Picture Book Friday

Since today is the Friday after the Fourth of July, I am assuming that traffic on my blog will have slowed to a crawl.  Since not a lot of you will be visiting, and a big thank you to those who came by,  I get to profile a book that may not appeal to all kids, but absolutely appealed to the kid in me.

This book in the right kid's hands will be a wonderful hit, but I don't believe, like so many of the books I profile on this blog, that it will have universal appeal.  So find the right kid, and get this book in their hands!

Title:       Want to Be in a Band?

Author:   Suzzy Roche

Target:    Kindergarten - Grade 3

What this book is about:
This book is about a girl who wants to be in a band (perhaps the title gave that away.)  She enlists her sisters to help her learn the guitar and gets them to play with her.  She practices (a lot) and their band performs on street corners.  After a while, they make it big but then eventually stop being the next big thing.  But they don't stop playing.  They enjoy their music and each other enough to have many years together.

Why I love this book:
First off, I think the illustrations by Giselle Potter are absolutely striking.  However, I do think this art is love it or hate it, and I happen to love it!  It reminds me a bit of Maira Kalman, whose work I adore so the pictures resonated with me immediately.  It also is a wonderful fit with the story which profiles more of an indie type band, so the pictures had to be cutting edge with a folksy bent.

I also loved the story.  The main messages are about practicing, not giving up and remembering to love your sisters, something we can all be reminded of from time to time.  It is also written in more of a conversational style, like the author is sitting there sharing her story with you, and her sense of humor is not lost in the telling.  I like that.

Who this book is for:
Great for kids who are musicians or musicians at heart.  Also good for kids who need to be reminded that siblings can be wonderful things, and that you do need to be gentle with them every once in a while!

Final thoughts:
The author is actual in a band called The Roches.  I have included a YouTube video of one of their children's songs.  Not really my speed, but fun to share with kids after you have read the book.

To purchase this book, click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Want to Be in a Band?  A portion of each purchase goes back to support this blog at no cost to you.