Archive for the ‘Little Book’ Category

The Dream of the Tortoise

Nyako Nakal

This is the story of a tortoise with very big dreams.


A Wonderful Read

The very first thing that needs to be mentioned is how beautiful the illustrations are in this book. I loved the detail a lot and just thought the whole picture book was absolutely stunning. It was definitely vibrant and is likely to be loved by adults and children alike. Secondly, I really loved this book. The story of a tortoise who just wants to swim but isn’t able to was just such an interesting book to read. I loved how she made friends along the way and how it all unfolded throughout. I especially loved how this book ends and I think it is such a lovely message for children too. Just because there are obstacles in our way, doesn’t mean that our dreams aren’t possible.

I would definitely recommend this book. I have a feeling that a lot of children will love the tortoise, her friends, and the journey that they all take to ensure that the Tortoise can fulfil her dreams!

Publisher: Clink Street Publishing
Publication Date: April 2019
Format: Paperback
Pages: 36
Genre: Picture Book
Age: Children
Reviewer: Faye
Source: Review Copy
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The Amazing Adventures of Wobblin’ Wobin

Tony Rocca

Meet Robin, or rather, Wobin: a metal garden ornament transported from England to the beautiful French Riviera. He’s lonely and can’t speak French. Neither can he fly, which is a bit unfortunate for a bird. This is his story about learning to fly and being brave.


Interview

with Tony Rocca

What is your favourite thing about writing books?
It’s being able to shut out the real world around me and escape to another place where I can let my imagination fly (literally so in the case of Wobblin’ Wobin).

Who is your favourite character in your book and why?
This has to be Wobin. He’s been bashed and beaten, unwanted and put up for sale on eBay, and then discovers he’s only of value to someone as a scarecrow. It’s all very demeaning for a once-proud little bird. He’s already conscious of a disadvantage, being unable to pronounce his “r’s”; but suddenly he is whisked off to a strange land where he can’t even speak the language, has no friends, and most embarrassingly has a fear of flying. When two turtle-doves and a lady blackbird take him under their wing, so to speak, a transformation occurs. He transcends his disadvantages and takes flights of fancy to discover the great destinations of the French Riviera. He is fearlessly cocky when faced with danger, and emerges in his true colours as a beautiful robin. I hope this theme of triumph over adversity will capture the imagination of children wherever they happen to live and they will want to visit for themselves some of the most beautiful places in France featured in the story.

What is your favourite drink to consume while writing?
Black coffee in the daytime. Our local aperitif, pastis, in the evening.

Do you have any bad habits while you’re writing?
Drinking two glasses of pastis in the evening. Or, I admit, three when writer’s block strikes.

How do you research your books?
I have lived on the Riviera, where the book is set, for more than 30 years so I am very familiar with the destinations concerned and have actually written travel pieces about them for The Sunday Times.

Are you a plotter or a pantser?
Very definitely a pantser. I like the spontaneity it affords and the freedom to go where the story takes me rather than stick to a specific plot. I know this is a dangerous road to take but I have a broad idea of the direction of travel and if I get stuck I can always U-turn and feel my way around the book another way.

If you could live in any fictional world, which would you choose and why?
The happy childhood evoked by Swallows and Amazons, the adventures of children sailing, fishing, camping and exploring the Lake District from their little island. For me, growing up in the north of England, it was familiar territory, but Arthur Ransome managed to imbue it with something magical with references to Robinson Crusoe and turning plain old lemonade into ‘grog’ and tinned corned beef into ‘pemmican’. The story has survived remarkably through the generations from first publication in 1930 to the latest iteration, a film version three years ago. I also like the fact that the author used to be a journalist with what was then the Manchester Guardian. With the book’s initial success he gave up the newspaper business and concentrated on writing more in the series.

If you could befriend any fictional character, who would you choose and why?
Eeyore. He’s so depressed, gloomy and pessimistic I’d like to take the old donkey out of the House at Pooh Corner and cheer him up with a good dose of grog and pemmican on a Lakeland holiday. Wouldn’t that be fun!

Publisher: Clink Street Publishing
Publication Date: April 2019
Format: Paperback
Pages: 182
Genre: Middle Grade
Age: Chrildren
Reviewer: Faye
Source: Review Copy
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Ting-A-Ling: The Old Ambulance

Harry Goldstar

Welcome to the world of Ting-a-Ling. The friendliest old ambulance there ever was. With line drawn illustrations for YOU to colour in helping you to familiarise yourself personally, with Ting-a-Ling, his owner and restorer Alf, his mum, and Mr .Grimsby the boss of the big ambulance station. Open the cover and jump into a whole NEW world of ambulance stories and adventures.
Designed in a quirky style encompassing story telling entertainment colouring and education suitable for both younger readers and adults alike. Truly an all in one compendium. Just like the filling in a sandwich, the best bit’s inside.
Simple and easy to read. The stories are written with a smattering of comical northern dialect in bite size chapters so as not to be taxing on the brain.
Have difficulty in reading? Written by a dyslexic who knows what a struggle it can be. This book really is here to help YOU!
If Ting-a-Ling had wings I would say welcome to the flying start. This book is the first in a series in the making where you will meet Ting-a-Ling and his friends.
TRY ME. If not for yourself. Think of someone else. Possibly a little person who the stories are written for.
You will love Ting-a-Ling. EVERYONE does!


A Lovely Book

Ting-A-Ling: The Old Ambulance is a book which contains two different stories and both are incredibly cute and well worth the read. The premise of the stories is that an old ambulance is found and then brought back to life. The stories then detail how the ambulance becomes helpful to the community. It is full of wonderful descriptions of the ambulance’s bells and really shows true community spirit throughout the books as well. It was a lovely read and one that I definitely believe that young children would really enjoy.

As mentioned above the book doesn’t have any colour in which means that as well as having a fun story, the kids also get a fun activity from the book, which is always a little bit more fun. I can definitely see my niece enjoying this book being read to her and then being able to imagine what colours she wants the ambulance to have.

On top of that, I also think the book is one that would easily be read over and over again. And it works having the two stories in one book as you can finish one story one day and then pick up the book and read the next story the next evening. I would definitely be interested in hearing further adventures that the ambulance goes on as well. I think this book would appeal to any child that enjoys Thomas the Tank Engine books as well, as it has the similar feel of a vehicle having fun and helping out with his community.

So if you’re looking for something new, fun and a book that encourages children to look at what they could help fix and re-turn to life – make sure you give this book a try!

Publisher: Clink Street Publishing
Publication Date: May 2019
Format: Paperback
Pages: 50
Genre: Picture Book
Age: Children
Reviewer: Faye
Source: Review Copy
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The Last Leaf

Gwyn Ellis Pritchard
The Last Leaf
“You will have to place a small handful of the maggots under your tongue, and must hold them there for a full two minutes,” Jack instructed Isabella . . . .And boy did they wriggle! She struggled not to wretch!
Two worlds collide when a chance meeting brings together Jack and Isabella. Jack, the son of the Head Gardener of the Oakfield Estate, finds himself a friend in the lovely Isabella, the ‘little lady of Oakfield Hall’.
Set in Victorian times in the Southern Counties of England – with an intermittent welsh presence in the form of the Jones’ travelling gypsy family – much laughter, dance, music and cultural challenges lie before the two friends this summer!
How will the delicate Isabella fair among the unfamiliar countryside with its host of creatures and seasonal demands?
Will the rugged, uneducated Jack rise to the challenge of learning to read and write poetry about his beloved countryside – poaching, skinning rabbits and river fishing?
Every day is an adventure and it seems they are meant to be together, always. Or are they?
Read about their exciting adventures and discover the true meaning of friendship with them as they each discover new worlds and new challenges!


A Wonderfully Moving Story

As soon as I heard about this book, I knew that it was one that I wanted to make sure I got a chance to read – and I am incredibly glad that I did. This book is very unique. It’s a lovely tale that I fell into easily and I cannot express how much I loved the friendship between Isabella and Jack. It was such a heart-warming friendship that blossomed throughout the novel. This book is also one that hit me quite emotionally as well, which is always a good thing – in my opinion!

The writing style is quite different but I liked it. It reads as though someone is telling the story to you – sort of like a bedtime story and so I feel that it would work really well when read aloud. Despite that, you were really able to get a good grasp on the characters and their relationship with each other and those around you. If I had one negative to say it would simply be that I wished the book was a little longer and we got a little bit more background information about the two characters – but that’s only because I really enjoyed reading about them!

Overall, this was a quick read but I definitely think it is one that will be loved by a lot of children. I think it’s a wonderful book for not just highlighting how strong and powerful friendships can be, but also how we’re also different but that doesn’t mean we can’t still be friends with those who are other from us. I honestly really enjoyed this novel and hope that many others will enjoy it as well!

The Last Leaf Tour Banner

Publisher: Clink Street Publishing
Publication Date: March 2019
Format: Paperback
Pages: 128
Genre: MG Historical
Age: Childrens
Reviewer: Faye
Source: Review Copy
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Dino Knights

Jeff Norton
Imagine medieval times where the dinosaurs never went extinct. When dinosaur stable boy Henry Fairchild stops a vicious T-Rex from attacking his master, he is invited to join the most elite group in Brecklan, the brave Knights of Panterra, the Dino Knights. But before he can prove himself, the enemies of Brecklan attack with a flock of pterodactyls and kidnap Lord Harding. Whether he’s ready or not, Henry and the Dino Knights mount a daring rescue mission…but nothing is what it seems.


Dino Knights by Jeff Norton; Cover Reveal

Today we’re sharing the cover to Jeff Norton’s new book, Dino Knights! The book is being released on 6th June 2019 and you can pre-order a copy here: Awesome Reads Pre-Order.

Cover of Dino Knights

We hope you’re as excited about this book as we are!

Publisher: Awesome Reads
Publication Date: June 2019
Format: Paperback
Genre: MG Adventure
Age: Children
Reviewer: Faye
Source: N/A
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Uthan

Uthania Jackson
image of Uthan Book Cove
Follow the adventures of Uthan as he goes on his first holiday and encounters the magic of a world under the sea.
Mum, Uthania, was inspired to write this story after discovering video selfies of Uthan after they came back from their holiday together.


A Lovely Read

This is a really lovely read about a boy who goes on holiday and is told that he will be able to spend some time with turtles. It starts with how excited he is to be going and what he needs to pack and ends with how much he loved his holiday and cannot wait to go back. It’s a simple story that I think many children will like and it’s a good book to have a conversation about holidays and trips out. I can definitely see many children and adults reminiscing about their own journeys that they’ve been on and really enjoyed.

The illustrations are a nice mix of handdrawn and computerized which brings a nice feel to the book overall. It makes it nice and easy to see what is going on as well. I definitely think that the colours jump off the page nicely. The illustrations are very pretty and would definitely appeal to children. I would definitely recommend this book.

Uthan Book Tour Banner

Publisher: Clink Street Publishing
Publication Date: March 2019
Format: Paperback
Pages: 18
Genre: Picture Book
Age: Children
Reviewer: Faye
Source: Review Copy
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The Secret Life of Moles

Liz Burgess

Liz Burgess has always held a keen interest in nature, especially small furry mammals!
Long fascinated by their secret activities at home in her own back garden, and the fields surrounding it, she decided to explore this special underground world, and find out more about moles and their other little friends. Liz Burgess lives in South Yorkshire and The Secret Life of Moles is her first book for children.


This is a wonderfully written story about a mole who wants to find a new home but comes across an issue straight away. Unfortunately his home is in the middle of a garden owned by humans and they do not like the mole hill he creates. Thus to ensure that the moles disappear, they put a hose into the hole to wash the moles away. Undettered, the mole returns to the garden the next night and talks to his friend, the Hedgehog and asks if he knows what happened. The story unfolds to leave lots of wildlife animals helping the moles create a new home for themselves in the garden so that the humans do not try and wash them out again!

It’s a lovely story of friendship and teamwork. I loved the fun descriptive words the author has used for the different animals that you come across too – such as house tigers for cats and barking tigers for dogs! It’s laid out in a very child-friendly way. However, with very little pictures – and the ones that are there being black and white – I would believe this book is better for an older audience, perhaps children who are just thinking about learning to read themselves or who want longer picture books as the story is also quite wordy. So probably perfect for kids between 5 and 8.

All in all, I definitely recommend this book as even as an adult I really enjoyed the story and I am positive that children will enjoy it too!

Publisher: Clink Street Publishing
Publication Date: February 2019
Format: Paperback
Pages: 40
Genre: Picture Book
Age: Childrens
Reviewer: Faye
Source: Review Copy
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Anna and Evan meet Charles Darwin

Tanya Hutter and Lina Daniel

Join Anna and Evan on a magical adventure to the Galapagos Islands where they meet Charles Darwin, discover unusual animals and learn some interesting scientific facts.
This engaging and educational book is ideal for young children to encourage curiosity and interest in the natural world and science.


This is such an informative and entertaining read. I really think it is a great introduction to science and I am definitely interested to see what other adventures Anna and Evan get up to. In this book they meet Charles Darwin who very helpfully explains why some animals are the same but also very different due to the environment that they live in. (Such as the difference between African Elephants and Indian Elephants). It’s all laid out in a fun, explorative way and throughout the book are little descriptions of the pictures on the page and I think that this could be a really great book to inspire children to start asking more questions about the world in which we live in.

Alongside such a brilliant story are beautiful illustrations. They’re really vibrant and colourful and depict the different animals really well. I also loved how the siblings return home and we get to see the drawings that they made of their time in the zoo. Once again showing that once we’ve learnt about the world, we can then explore it further with creativity. Lastly, but certainly not least, I also love that it has a little biography of Charles Darwin at the back of the book.

Honestly, this is a great book to introduce some curiosity into children!

Publisher: Clink Street Publishing
Publication Date: February 2019
Format: Paperback
Pages: 30
Genre: Picture Book
Age: Childrens
Reviewer: Faye
Source: Review Copy
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Rage Has a Hold on Sammy

Angela Wiggins

Rage Has A Hold On Sammy is the story of an eight year old boy named, Sammy. He and his father are very close, even though his parents are divorced. Then one day, his grandmother calls; Sammy’s dad passed away. After the initial shock, Sammy’s behavior changes into a defiant, disrespectful child. How can he get over this terrible feeling that has a tight hold on him? Children that experience the loss of a parent have a difficult time? Some of those children become angry and hostile like Sammy. This book will help children in the same situation realize their not alone.


Rage Has a Hold on Sammy is a strong, moving book which could help a lot of children suffering with grief. In the story, Sammy is told by his mother that his father has passed away. Being close to his father, Sammy does not deal with his death very well. He ends up feeling angry, and betrayed, thus no longer caring about how his behaviour is affecting others. Throughout the story, it is easy to connect with Sammy and the people around him and in such a short book, Angela Wiggins did a wonderful job of bringing the story to life and really getting across how important it is to understand and recognise our feelings instead of letting them manifest and brew underneath the surface.

Along with an easy-to-follow story, the book is also full of very well depicted images of what is happening and how Sammy is feeling throughout. It would be the perfect book for children who are dealing with grief but also for those who may know someone who is acting like Sammy and cannot understand it. It’s a wonderful book for bringing empathy into children’s lives for sure. My only complaint, and it is very minor, is simply that I had hoped it would be a little bit longer and look a little bit more about how Sammy goes on to deal with his new emotions. Instead, I’ll simply have to hope there will be a sequel!

Publisher: Angela Wiggins Publishing
Publication Date: September 2018
Format: Paperback
Pages: 36
Genre: Picture Book
Age: Childrens
Reviewer: Faye
Source: Review Copy
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Bertie the Buffalo

Wendy Jones

Bertie the Buffalo is based on a true story of when a Water Buffalo escaped from a Buffalo Park in Fife, near Dundee, Scotland. A rhyming book about the adventures Bertie got up to and how he safely returned home, demonstrating how important each of us is no matter how insignificant we feel. Bertie felt that no one noticed him. But he didn’t need to think that as we are all special. We are all a part of one big family.


This is such a sweet and lovely little picture book that I would definitely recommend! It tells the story of Bertie, the smallest Buffalo in the farm he lives. He’s the fastest – except for Emu and he loves playing Hide and Seek. Though he fears deep inside that as he is so small, he won’t be missed. Thus when the opportunity to explore arrives, he follows a little blue butterfly out into the world. It’s a fun adventure as he meets new creatures and new places. But then he begins to feel sad and miss home quite a lot.

It’s written in a rhyming verse with easy words for those who are just learning to read along with a lovely story. It is also a good book to talk to young children about running away from home – although there aren’t many consequences for Bertie but then he is a buffalo! The book also celebrates differences within a family which is really lovely too. On top of all of that, the illustrations are wonderful and easy on the eye with light pastel colours used throughout.

Overall, I found this book to be very enjoyable and absolutely adorable. I am certain that it will be loved by lots of children as they follow Bertie on his adventures both inside and outside of his home. I would definitely be happy to read more books with the main character of Bertie at the centre!


About the Author
Award Winning Author Wendy H. Jones lives in Scotland, and her police procedural series featuring Detective Inspector Shona McKenzie, is set in the beautiful city of Dundee, Scotland. Wendy has led a varied and adventurous life. Her love for adventure led to her joining the Royal Navy to undertake nurse training. After six years in the Navy she joined the Army where she served as an Officer for a further 17 years. This took her all over the world including Europe, the Middle East and the Far East. Much of her spare time is now spent travelling around the UK, and lands much further afield. As well as nursing Wendy also worked for many years in Academia. This led to publication in academic textbooks and journals. Killer’s Countdown is her first novel and the first book in the Shona McKenzie Mystery series. Killer’s Crew won the Books Go Social Book of the Year 2107. There are now six books in this series with Killer’s Crypt being released in August, 2017. The Dagger’s Curse is the first book in The Fergus and Flora Mysteries for Young Adults. This book is currently shortlisted for the Woman Alive Magazine Readers Choice Award Book of the Year. She is also a highly successful marketer and she shares her methods in the book, Power Packed Book Marketing.

Publisher: Sarah Grace Publishing
Publication Date: November 2018
Format: Paperback
Pages: 32
Genre: Picture Book
Age: Children
Reviewer: Faye
Source: Review Copy
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