Willow's Song by Natalie Finnigan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I had gotten this rhyming children's book for my little slugs as we're big fans of Natalie Finnigan and Gina Rahman. Natalie's writing is always, and here too, full of charm, warmth with words that just roll off the tongue. The story is about a little fairy, Willow, who has a broken wing and the fairy doctor is summoned to try and cure her. Can he? There's a strong message within and one that we can all adhere to.
Combined with Gina's colourful, vibrant and extremely cute illustrations, these books and this one in particular are superb for young ones. Having finished the book and then read the motivation behind it it's even more of a must-read. With all my heart I hope that little Willow, a young child at Great Ormond St. Hospital, gets better.
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The Artt of Early Learning Series: Welcome Smart Artt by D.A. Batrowny
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
A great, fun, slug-tastic book to aid new parents and help their little slugs growth in the formative years. Smart Artt is a fun-looking baby that will appeal to, help and encourage all in getting the wee sprogs yapping away. It's cleverly written with simple rhyming patterns that are fun to read.
Welcome Smart Artt is easily approachable as well and is not at all overwhelming or indeed boring, with great, colourful illustrations and a clearly devised structure this is a must-have book.
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Best Holiday Ever by Orison Carlile
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This is one of my new favourite books and I recommend this to adults as well as kids as it is so, so funny - the humour is right up my cabbage patch. If you don't find this funny then you need urgent surgery, (luckily Dr. Watson the Slug is available for a small fee). How do I describe this book? It's like a series of comedy sketches with the overall arc of memories of a child's holiday, of course seen through the innocent eyes of a rather (perhaps dry-witted) child. We're taken through different pivotal memories of the holiday when hilarious moments took place, for example dad's parking at the airport, and the episode with the diarrhoea. The funniest, laugh out loud moment came towards the end at airport security - I shan't give it away. The illustrations fit perfectly with the narrative and are rip-roaringly funny.
Get this now!!
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A turtle's life is a tough one... tougher than a slug's? Tougher than a slug's that runs the risk of ending up in an Elias Zapple stew? It is tough none the less as a turtle is on its own from the beginning. Hatching from its shell, breaking through then making its way to the water during which time a hungry hawk could come swooping down to snatch it up for breakfast. The little turtle then also has to find its own food! Poor little mite. Reminds me of when I was born and arose out of a tulip. Nobody helped me either. Therefore I can thoroughly recommend this book as it's tender, (much like the slugs in my slug stew), informative and makes for excellent bedtime reading.
This is a great story with a wonderful message within that being a good person maybe more beneficial to yourself. If only my neighbour Dieter would listen. In Firebird: Adventure One we first encounter Alex and Katie as they get to go over to Aunt Karina's house, which they assume will be thoroughly boring. How wrong they were! There's a magical painting which is a portal to another land where a firebird lives. They go into this land to fetch a feather that they hope will heal their aunt's leg, unfortunately they disobey their aunt's rules and get into a situation with the grumpy and slightly evil, Baba Yaga. This is a wonderfully told story with a light, descriptive narrative that really makes you feel you're in this magical place. Combined with the moral, this is a great bedtime story. Five stars!
Hunting for Dragons on a Very Long Welsh Walk is a little bit of a continuation of Melinda Kinsman's other book, Odd's Big Scottish Adventure. This time, Odd and M do indeed go on a very long walk across the mountains and valleys of Wales. There's a lot packed into this adventure as the reader gets to not only discover the beauty of Wales, they also get to discover its wonderful language and history with wonderful tidbits of knowledge dotted throughout. My slugs, for example, never knew the story of the Welsh dragon battling the Anglo-Saxon dragon or that King Arthur's knights are said to be asleep in a cave and will awaken if Wales should ever need them. Quite fascinating. Melinda writes with warmth and in a fun way so that the child/slug won't even realise that they're learning. There are fantastic photographs throughout, check out the hut, as well as a useful glossary at the back. Where will Odd and M visit next? Can't wait to find out!
There's something in this story that just reminds me of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and it's not just how our protagonists Alex and Katie enter the magical world - through a golden frame in this book, which is rather novel and highly inventive - or that there's a witch there - though she's more grumpy than evil - however, I can't quite seem to put my finger on it. I shall have to ask my slugs what they think. The story is also novel as it comes across as quite realistic even though it's set in a fantasy world and it's filled with many logical solutions - the wearing of glasses for one. I guess that's the message within, that most things can be explained by reason rather than the supernatural? Well, that's my interpretation.
The writing is crisp and nicely detailed and will give the reader a clear impression of the world they're encountering. Overall, this is highly recommended and I can't wait to read the author's other books.
P.S. And yes, dragons are animals too and so shouldn't be harmed! Jellybean the Dragon would wholeheartedly agree with that statement.
High-octane, adrenalin-pumping, action-packed thriller and it's a book for children! My slugs and I felt breathless when reading this book and needed to drink quite a few Noggin' Rockers. Most kids books are rather pedestrian when compared with this, or perhaps I should slugestrian... no, that doesn't work. This is a thrill a minute as we get taken around Paris, get to learn about Paris, see the attractions of Paris and make us want to avoid Paris - not really - as they battle the Good Company. The characters are fun, colourful and involving, the protagonist is a cool kid that most other kids will look up to and be inspired by. A great book for tweens, other kids, slugs and anybody that wants their breath taken away.
Sliders of Glass Mountain is another interactive masterpiece by the team of D M Potter and Blair Polly. It's quite different to the other books like In the Magician's House etc... as even though it's set on a fantasy planet it's a lot more logical and practical and I think any budding slug engineers out there will find this book not only interesting but also quite an insight! Being that it's interactive it's a lot of fun too and it naturally really involves the reader as they decide which direction to take - that's always fun, unless you're Percy the Slug and don't do so well. To top it all off there are these morph rats which okay, they're no slugs but they are slimy and hairless - so that's a huge bonus. Another fantastic book and great for those long, boring journeys.
This is the 2nd edition of The Mystic Princesses and the Whirlpool with a new cover and illustrations and it was well worth the wait. My slugs have particularly commended the cover and asked why I don't have covers as pretty. I ignored them. Even though the beautiful cover gives a good impression of the kind of content inside - beautiful writing - it would seem to be more aimed at girls than boys. However, I'm male and most of my slugs are male - probably- and we enjoyed it so perhaps the male members of your household will like it too? And why not? This book is full of Greek mythology, specifically in relation to Ares (which is sure to get kids interested in the Greek mythologies) as the young princesses attempt to protect our protagonist Harmonie from her father and her siblings. Full of adventure and a lovely narrative, this is a promising first book and with the 2nd to take place in Hawaii, lots more great adventures and storytelling are sure to be told.
Choosing books worthy enough to be read and reviewed by Elias Zapple.