Blog Tour, Giveaway, Picture Books

Review and Giveaway for Stella by McCall Hoyle

 

About the Book:
Title: Stella
Author: McCall Hoyle
Pub. Date:  March 2, 2021


Beagles and Books is excited to share a review and giveaway for the middle grade novel, Stella.  Special thanks to author McCall Hoyle for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.


My Review:

“My name is Stella. I’m a beagle, and I was born to sniff.”

While all beagles have a keen nose, Stella has been trained to sniff out explosives. But after a mission went terribly wrong resulting in the death of Connie, her handler, Stella is haunted by the memories of that tragic day.  Retired of her duties, Stella now suffers from PSTD which is making it difficult for her to find a permanent home. 

Fortunately, Esperanza, a friend of Connie’s and world-renowned dog trainer offers to rehabilitate Stella to help her find a forever home.  When Stella arrives at Esperanza’s farm, she is warmly greeted by her daughter Cloe.  Picking up scents of cookies, grass, and books, Stella is reminded of Connie who read aloud to her and recalled these words-“you must be the thing you cannot do.”    But Stella also smells a sour or metallic scent unsure what it means.

From that very first day, Stella notices that Cloe gets her better than any other human since Connie.  While Stella is not happy to be sleeping in the barn, she does have the company of brave border collie Nando who moves closer to her crate when she is anxious.  Since it is sheep shearing season, Cloe successfully convinces her reluctant mom to let her work with Stella.  Cloe still has the strange smell that Stella can’t figure out, but it’s not strong every day.  On a trip running errands, the scent intensifies.  Stella tries to alert Esperanza as she witnesses Cloe having an epileptic seizure.   After seeing Cloe in distress, Stella is determined to not only be a good dog, but also brave like she was with Connie.  Can Stella persuade Esperanza that she is meant to be Cloe’s dog?

It is no secret I love reading dog books, but when I heard about Stella,  I was even more eager to read since the novel featured a beagle.  As I read the first page, I was excited to discover that the story is written from Stella’s point of view.  Having Stella tell the story allows readers to learn that she is indeed a great dog, but she is deeply traumatized by the loss of Connie and blames herself.  My heart hurt for Stella and as I read, I found herself hugging my own beagle, Bella, as a way to comfort Stella.

When Stella meets Cloe, she has an immediate connection with her.  Realizing the power of her nose, Stella knows she can signal Cloe before a seizure occurs.  Stella’s overwhelming need to help Cloe aids her in her rehabilitation, for Stella learns that she is not defined by what happened in the past and can be the thing you cannot do just like Connie said.  What charged Stella’s determination was Chloe because on their first walk together, Stella knew she could trust her.  Cloe also believed that Stella could do great things frequently telling her mother how smart Stella is.  Trust and belief gradually turn into love which makes Stella and Cloe’s relationship so heartwarming.

What I also love about Stella is its length.  Long novels can be intimidating to some middle grade readers so I appreciate that Stella is under 200 pages with well developed characters that you will root for, and an intriguing plot that makes the novel very difficult to put down.  Stella will make all readers fall in love with dogs especially super sniffer beagles!


Listen to a video message from the author, McCall Hoyle!


Check out the Reader’s Guide to Stella!

Click to access stella_readers_guide._mccall_hoyle.pdf

Giveaway!

Beagles & Books is excited to give away an ARC of Stella courtesy of author McCall Hoyle. You can enter by retweeting my Twitter post or leaving a comment below. Giveaway ends at 10 pm on Friday, 2/26/21.

Blog Tour, Giveaway, Graphic Novel, Middle Grade Literature, Rockstar Book Tours

Blog Tour & Giveaway for Allergic by Megan Wagner Lloyd & Michelle Mee Nutter

                                              ALLERGIC                    

About The Book:
Title: ALLERGIC
Author: Megan Wagner Lloyd & Michelle Mee Nutter
Pub. Date: March 2, 2021
Publisher: Graphix
Formats: Hardcover, Paperback, eBook, Audiobook
Pages: 240
Find it:  GoodreadsAmazon, Kindle, Audible, B&N, iBooks, Kobo, TBDBookshop.org

 

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Beagles and Books is thrilled to be hosting a spot on the ALLERGIC by Megan Wagner Lloyd & Michelle Mee Nutter Blog Tour hosted by Rockstar Book Tours.  All opinions are my own.


Publisher’s Summary: 

A coming-of-age middle-grade graphic novel featuring a girl with severe allergies who just wants to find the perfect pet! At home, Maggie is the odd one out. Her parents are preoccupied with getting ready for a new baby, and her younger brothers are twins and always in their own world. Maggie loves animals and thinks a new puppy to call her own is the answer, but when she goes to select one on her birthday, she breaks out in hives and rashes. She’s severely allergic to anything with fur!  Can Maggie outsmart her allergies and find the perfect pet? With illustrations by Michelle Mee Nutter, Megan Wagner Lloyd uses inspiration from her own experiences with allergies to tell a heartfelt story of family, friendship, and finding a place to belong.


Review:

In Maggie’s family, her parents are absorbed with getting ready for the new baby and her twin brothers have each other which makes her feel a little left out.   That is all going to change on her tenth birthday.  Why?  Maggie finally gets something to call her own-a dog!  But when she visits the shelter with her family and meets the puppy she wants to adopt, her body reacts differently than her heart.  Maggie’s nose itches and she can’t stop scratching.  Her dream of owning a dog is shattered when she discovers she is allergic to any animal with fur or feathers.  And while hopeful Maggie tries out non-allergic pets, none of them work out long term.

Not only is Maggie feeling lonely at home, but also at her new elementary school.  Fortunately, Claire, who is just one year older, moves in next door and she and Maggie become fast friends until Claire gets a dog.  Feeling betrayed, Maggie distances herself from Claire but after some time, she gets the courage to apologize and explain the true severity of her allergies.  Back to being besties, Claire helps Maggie secretly get a pet mouse but between her allergies flaring up again and her brothers sneaking into her room, Maggie is forced to say goodbye again.  Will Maggie find a way to come to terms with her allergies and her place in the family?

Inspired by her own experiences with allergies,  Lloyd’s text was honest and heartfelt which helps readers identify and connect with Maggie. What I loved most about the story is Maggie’s realization that she is an integral part of her family, for when her mother goes to the hospital, her brothers really need her and once her little sister is born, she feels an immediate bond to this new little soul. Nutter’s warm and dynamic illustrations bring Lloyd’s text to life, perfectly showing her feelings as she experiencing both heartache and joy.

I read a lot of children’s books and Allergic is the first book I have ever read that tackles pet allergies.  But the story is not only about Maggie handling her allergies.  It is a story about how to manage changes in family, school, and friendship–topics that lots of kids can relate to.  I  highly recommend pre–ordering Allergic to add to your home, classroom or school library!


Praise for Allergic!

“Maggie’s inventiveness as she overcomes these trials is showcased through Lloyd’s captivating narrative and Nutter’s bright and dynamic illustrations. The story provides insight into the lives of those with allergies and the accommodations needed to avoid serious episodes … A heartachingly enjoyable tale of resilience.” — KIRKUS REVIEWS, starred review 

Readers will root for this realistic and relatable fifth grader, who’s capable of kindness well as envy and self-doubt. Lloyd folds in information about allergy tests, anaphylaxis, EpiPens, and other facts that Maggie and her friend Sebastian, who also has allergies, recite to each other. Layouts rely on three to four large panels per page, creating a smooth visual flow; Nutter’s muted, uncluttered art has a cozy feel … Maggie makes new pals here—she’ll find even more friends in elementary and middle school libraries, where readers will easily identify with her trials and accomplishments.” – SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL 

“A fun and entertaining story.” — BLEEDING COOL 

“The perfect graphic novel for kids of all ages.” — FROLIC 

Allergic is the sweetest story you’ll read all year. A touching chronicle of a young girl’s severe allergies woven into a meaningful journey of friendship, family, and self-discovery.” — Terri Libenson, New York Times bestselling author of Invisible Emmie


Megan Wagner Lloyd (by Seth Lloyd)About Megan:
MEGAN WAGNER LLOYD is the author of several picture books, including Paper Mice, Building Books, Finding Wild, and A Fort-Building Time. She lives in the Washington DC area. Visit her online at meganwagnerlloyd.com.

Website | Instagram | Goodreads | Amazon

 

 


Michelle Mee Nutter (by Greg Marquis)About Michelle: 
MICHELLE MEE NUTTER graduated with a BFA in Illustration from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design. Her work has been recognized by the Society of Illustrators, 3×3 Illustration, Creative Quarterly, and more. Michelle lives in Boston. Visit her online at michellemee.com.

Website | Instagram | Facebook | Goodreads  

 


Giveaway Details: 
3 winners will win a finished copy of ALLERGIC, US Only.  To enter the giveaway, click the link below.

https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/e2389ba21233/

Tour Schedule:
Check out the other stops on the blog tour!

Week One:

2/11/2021

For The Love Of Kidlit

Excerpt

2/12/2021

Beagles and Books

Review

2/13/2021

She Just Loves Books

Review

Week Two:

2/14/2021

Westveil Publishing

Review

2/15/2021

Adventures Of A Travelers Wife

Review

2/16/2021

Nerdophiles

Review

2/17/2021

Pick a good book

Review

2/18/2021

Lifestyle of Me

Review

2/19/2021

Twirling Book Princess

Excerpt

2/20/2021

Not In Jersey

Review

Week Three:

2/21/2021

BookHounds YA

Review

2/22/2021

Kait Plus Books

Excerpt

2/23/2021

Little Red Reads

Review

2/24/2021

A Dream Within A Dream

Excerpt

2/25/2021

Two Chicks on Books

Excerpt

2/26/2021

Jazzy Book Reviews

Review

2/27/2021

Midnightbooklover

Review

Week Four:

2/28/2021

Hurn Publications

Excerpt

3/1/2021

Locks, Hooks and Books

Review

3/2/2021

Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers

Review

CATCH MEGAN WAGNER LLOYD AND MICHELLE MEE NUTTER ON THE VIRTUAL ALLERGIC TOURAllergic Tour - 03.02.21 - Raina Telgemeier

March 2, 2021 5:00 pm (PST) Launch event hosted by Green Apple Books In conversation with Raina Telgemeier (GUTS) 

Allergic Tour - 03.04.21 - Jeff Kinney

March 4, 2021 7:00 pm (EST) Hosted by An Unlikely Story In conversation with Jeff Kinney (DIARY OF A WIMPY KID) 

Allergic Tour - 03.10.21 - Varian Johnson & Shannon Wright
March 10, 2021 4:00 pm (PST) Hosted by The Reading Bug In conversation with Varian Johnson and Shannon Wright (TWINS)

Blog Tour, Giveaway, Picture Books

Blog Tour & Giveaway for Sadie Sprocket Builds a Rocket by Sue Fliess Illustrated by Annabel Tempest

                                                                   
About the Book:
Title: Sadie Sprocket Builds a Rocket
Author: Sue Fliess
Illustrator: Annabel Tempest
Pub. Date:  February 1, 2021

Beagles and Books is excited to be part of the blog tour for Sadie Sprocket Builds a Rocket. Special thanks to Two Lions and Barbara Fisch of Blue Slip Media for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.


Review:

It all started with a wish to travel to space.  Sadie Sprocket was not just a dreamer, she was a doer!  And researching and learning no one has been to Mars, Sadie was not deterred.  Sadie’s confidence exudes in Fliess’ rhyming text and Tempest’s illustrations show that exploring outer space is her passion.

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Sadie and her crew collaborate to build a ship out of recycled materials.  I love how on the first page spreads, her stuffed animals sit motionless on her bed and shelves, but as soon as Sadie proclaims her mission, the stuffed animals feel her energy and come to life to help her.  Kids see how teamwork truly makes the dream work, and the pride is evident on all the crew’s faces on launch day.

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After landing on Mars, Sadie and her crew get right to work collecting and labeling samples to bring back home.   Kid see the importance of both planning and teamwork as the crew each has the necessary supplies to complete their task.  When they try to venture home, problems abound.  First, the landing gear is buried.  Then the rocket won’t start.  Sadie and her crew demonstrate problem solving, resilience, and resourcefulness in restoring power and successfully blasting back to Earth.  Once safely home, Sadie models one of the most important lessons of all.  Success means making new goals liking a trip to Neptune!

Told in playful quatrains, Fliess has written an inspirational story encouraging us all to chase our dreams.  What I love most is Sadie teaches us that dreams come true with planning, research, teamwork, determination, and problem solving.  And once a goal is accomplished, another idea can take its place.  Tempest’s bright and exuberant illustrations reinforce the positive themes. At the end of the book, Sadie’s notebook is included which shares facts about Mars as well as women in space.  Sadie motivates us all to be dreamers AND doers!


Praise for Sadie Sprocket Builds a Rocket!

“Inspiring, adventurous fun for aspirational kids.” —Kirkus Reviews


About the Author:

Sue Fliess is the author of more than thirty children’s books, including Mrs. Claus Takes the Reins illustrated by Mark Chambers; Shoes for Me!, A Dress for Me!, and Books for Me!, all illustrated by Mike Laughead; and Let’s Build illustrated by Miki Sakamoto. She lives with her family and their two dogs in northern Virginia, where they admire the moon, stars, and sometimes even planets from their backyard. Learn more about Sue at www.suefliess.com, on Twitter: @SueFliess, on Facebook: Sue Fliess Author and Pinterest: Sue Fliess

About the Illustrator:
Annabel Tempest
is the illustrator of a number of picture books and board books. She holds a degree in fashion and textiles and has worked as a freelance illustrator on everything from maps and packaging to greeting cards and children’s books. She lives in the beautiful Somerset countryside in the UK with her husband and a houseful of muddy boys and dogs. Learn more about Annabel at www.annabeltempest.com and on Instagram: annabel.tempest


Sadie Sprocket Builds a Rocket_Cover

Enter Beagles & Books’ Giveaway: 

One winner will receive a copy of Sadie Sprocket Builds a Rocket courtesy of Two Lions (U.S. addresses only). This giveaway is open from Friday, February 5, 2021 through Friday, February 12, 2021 ending at 10:00 p.m. EST.   Please note that book may take longer to ship so patience is appreciated.  Enter below or head over to my Twitter account, @lauramossa and retweet my Sadie the Sprocket blog tour post.

#Bookexcursion, Blog Tour, Giveaway, It's Monday! What Are You Reading?, Picture Books

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 2/1/21

 

Bella and I are excited to share our latest reads in It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #IMWAYR is a community of bloggers who link up to share what they are reading.  Kellee Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen Vincent of Teach Mentor Texts decided to give it a #kidlit focus and encourage everyone who participates to visit at least 3 of the other #kidlit book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.

Continue reading “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 2/1/21”

#Bookexcursion, Blog Tour, Giveaway, It's Monday! What Are You Reading?, Picture Books

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 1/18/21

Bella and I are excited to share our latest reads in It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #IMWAYR is a community of bloggers who link up to share what they are reading.  Kellee Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen Vincent of Teach Mentor Texts decided to give it a #kidlit focus and encourage everyone who participates to visit at least 3 of the other #kidlit book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.

Continue reading “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 1/18/21”

Blog Tour, Giveaway, Picture Books

Blog Tour & Giveaway for Scooper and Dumper by Lindsay Ward

About the Book:
Title: Scooper and Dumper
Author/Illustrator: Lindsay Ward
Pub. Date:  January 1, 2021


Beagles and Books is excited to be part of the blog tour for Scooper and Dumper.  Special thanks to Two Lions and Barbara Fisch of Blue Slip Media for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Continue reading “Blog Tour & Giveaway for Scooper and Dumper by Lindsay Ward”

Blog Tour, Giveaway, Picture Books

Review and Giveaway for Goldibooks and Wee Bear by Troy Wilson Illustrated by Edwardian Taylor

 

About the Book:
Title: Goldibooks and the Wee Bear
Author: Troy Wilson
Illustrator: Edwardian Taylor
Pub. Date:  January 12, 2021


Beagles and Books is excited to share a review and giveaway for the recently released Goldibooks and the Wee Bear.  Special thanks to author Troy Wilson and Running Press Kids for sending me an eARC in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.


My Review:

I fell in love with this book on the very first page because a little girl thought books were as good as gold.  Me too! Why did Goldibooks love books so much?  Her parents instilled the love of reading in her.  And it gets better!  Each member of the family has their own bookcase and own reading chair.  Ahh! Pure paradise.  

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Goldi and her parents aren’t the only ones who have a penchant for books.  Wee Bear is scouring the forest and the town for even the smallest piece of paper (not food). Why? Because he loves reading too! So when he stumbles upon a house and peeks inside, he spies those glorious bookshelves and cannot resist entering Goldi’s home.  In true fairytale fashion, both Mom’s and Dad’s books are not a good fit, but Goldi’s are just right.

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Of course, you can’t enjoy reading on the floor so Wee Bear tries out the family’s chairs with Goldi’s being the best fit until…it breaks.  Oops. No worries.  Nothing better than snuggling up with a book in bed except for the fact you might be so relaxed that you fall asleep. As the illustrator of the IT’S NOT A FAIRYTALE series, I am a big fan of Taylor’s bold and lively artwork. I especially love the illustrations of Wee Bear, for after he jumped into a bush to glance into Goldi’s house, he is covered in twigs and leaves. 

As expected, when Goldi and her family arrive home, they are startled at the mess.  Who could be responsible? When Goldi and Wee Bear finally meet, he begins to explain but his parents interrupt him and they are NOT happy. 

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It turns out that Goldi’s parents were scared of grown up bears and Wee Bear’s parents were scared of grown up humans. Thankfully, their mutual love for books changes both families’ mindsets and an important lesson was learned– If you can’t judge a book by its cover, you surely can’t judge an animal by their appearance.

As an elementary reading specialist, I can’t gush enough about Wilson’s clever retelling of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. I love that reading is presented as a social activity first with Goldi and her parents, then Goldi’s family and Wee Bear’s family, and finally, the whole town creating a community book club. Wilson’s message is simple but powerful. Books bring people together and are meant to be shared.

 

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About the Author:
Troy Wilson is a picture book author living in Victoria, BC, Canada. Goldibooks and the Wee Bear is his second book/reading-themed fairy tale with Running Press Kids, preceded by Little Red Reading Hood and the Misread Wolf, which was illustrated by Ilaria Campana. His ninth picture book is due out this October, illustrated by Eve Coy and published by Candlewick.


About the Illustrator:
Edwardian Taylor was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii. His character designs, storyboards, and concept art can be seen in mobile games, TV, films, and commercials. He is the illustrator of multiple children’s books, including Race!, written by Sue Fliess; the Toy Academy chapter books, written by Brian Lynch; and the It’s Not a Fairytale books, written by Josh Funk. He lives in Texas with his partner and their four dogs. 


TW

 

Giveaway!

One lucky winner will receive signed copies of both Goldibooks and the Wee Bear and Little Red Reading Hood and the Misread Wolf courtesy of author Troy Wilson. This giveaway is open from Thursday, January 14, 2021 to Sunday, January 17, 2021 ending at 10:00 p.m. EST.   Please note that book may take longer to ship so patience is appreciated.  Enter below or head over to Twitter,  follow Troy Wilson  @TroyStoryToo, and retweet my Goldibooks and the Wee Bear post. 

 
Blog Tour, Giveaway, Picture Books

Blog Tour & Giveaway for Comet The Unstoppable Reindeer by Jim Benton

 

About the Book:
Title: Comet The Unstoppable Reindeer
Author/Illustrator: Jim Benton
Pub. Date:  September 15, 2020


Beagles and Books is excited to be part of the blog tour for Comet The Unstoppable ReindeerSpecial thanks to Two Lions and Barbara Fisch of Blue Slip Media for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.


My Review:

After breaking up an elf fight (tensions rise when elves don’t get a day off),  Comet is sporting a sling and cast.   And to make matter worse, the doctor grounds him from his annual Christmas ride with Santa.  Poor Comet is feeling pretty down and alone but then realizes Santa forgot his sack of toys. It’s 2020 so he calls Santa’s cell but with all the noise, Santa doesn’t answer.  

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Comet tries to lift the bag but it’s way too heavy.  Attempts using a lever and a hoist are unsuccessful.  Comet feels defeated until he reads a sweet letter from a boy who asks for a pig on a bike for his little sister.  After seeing that toy at the top of the sack, Comet is now determined to deliver it to the bright yellow house with a bright blue roof. 

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Circling the world, Comet searches for the house and realizes that flying and delivering gifts is a true skill.  He has to battle chimneys, minivans,  geese and hard landings.  Riddled with scrapes, limps, pains, and lumps, Comet is distraught.  How will he ever find the little boy’s house? 

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With a hilarious rhyming text, I laughed out loud after reading each page.  Benton did a fabulous job of keeping the plot moving with each stanza. Comet’s positive traits of helpfulness, diligence, perseverance, and empathy shined through both in the text and bold and energetic cartoon illustrations.  Comet’s feelings are very evident from looking at his expressions.  I especially loved the illustrations showing how moved Comet was when he read the little boy’s letter and later, finally figured out the location of his house (spoiler, but hey, Christmas stories must have a happy ending).

If you are looking for a humorous holiday book with a feel good message, look no further than Comet The Unstoppable Reindeer.  Looking forward to sharing it as a read aloud next week with my students!


 
Praise for Comet The Unstoppable Reindeer!
 
★“Along with being lit up by themes of caring for others and shouldering responsibility, this hilarious seasonal outing offers great read-aloud potential for its regular but natural-sounding metrics and rhyme.” —Booklist (starred review)
 
“You might want to gift this one a little earlier than Christmas so you can read it to your little ones every night leading up to December 25. It’s the adorable (and all-too relatable) tale of Comet, an unstoppable reindeer.” —Parade
 

About the Author/Illustrator:

Jim Benton is the award-winning creator of the New York Times bestselling series Dear Dumb Diary and Franny K. Stein as well as the popular It’s Happy Bunny brand. His books have sold more than fifteen million copies in twenty-five countries and have garnered numerous honors. Like Comet, Jim knows what it’s like to hobble around in a cast; however, he is still learning to fly. Find out more about him at JimBenton.com.


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Giveaway!

One lucky winner will receive a copy of Comet The Unstoppable Reindeer courtesy of Two Lions (U.S. addresses only). This giveaway is open from Friday, December 11, 2020 through Friday, December 17, 2020 ending at 10:00 p.m. EST.   Please note that book may take longer to ship so patience is appreciated.  Enter below or head over to my Twitter account, @lauramossa and retweet my Comet The Unstoppable Reindeer blog tour post.

 
Blog Tour, Giveaway, Picture Books

Blog Tour & Giveaway for The Snow Dancer by Addie Boswell Illustrated by Mercè López

 

About the Book:
Title: The Snow Dancer
Author: Addie Boswell
Illustrator:  Mercè López
Pub. Date:  December 1, 2020


Beagles and Books is excited to be part of the blog tour for The Snow DancerSpecial thanks to Two Lions and Barbara Fisch of Blue Slip Media for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.


My Review:

No matter your age, there is nothing like waking up and seeing snow blanket your neighborhood.  Sofia is one of the first awake and basks in the quiet.  As she ventures outside, all she can hear is the sound of her feet on the snow–CRINCH, CRUNCH and SLISH SLUSSSSSSSSSSH.  Sofia stops abruptly and her face beams when she sees that the snow on the soccer field has not yet been disturbed.  

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Sofia wastes no time gracefully dancing a whole ballet on the beautiful coating of snow, but her silence is short–lived when a pack of loud and excited kids slide down the hill interrupting her solo.  Fortunately, Sofia’s annoyance is calmed by a small, younger girl wearing fairy wings who sweetly asks “Are you a Snow Fairy?”  Sofia replies “I’m not a fairy. I’m a dancer.” She takes the little girl’s hand and shows her that snow dancers can do ANYTHING.  

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The duo twirl, leap, skate, and slide but a snowball halts their snow dance.  Well, if you can beat them, why not join them?  Tired after the snowball fight, Sofia bids adieu to her new friend. She dances back to her warm home to sip hot chocolate and reminisce about her glorious snow day. 

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With lyrical text and lively illustrations, The Snow Dancer is not only a joy for the ears but also for the eyes. Boswell uses a lot of rich vocabulary to convey Sofia’s actions throughout the story.  For example, she bundled out of her sleeping house.  She hopscotched down the invisible sidewalk.  As a reading specialist, exposing children to robust words supports their oral and written language.  Onomatopoeia is also peppered through the text which brings the story to life. As I was reading, I could actually hear the sounds that Sofia was making in the snow.  López’s gorgeous illustrations make the story leap off the page, for Sofia’s movements stepping into the new snow and dancing in the field were both graceful and playful.  I especially love the interaction between Sofia and her young friend which completely changes Sofia’s mood from peeved to pleased.  And the smile on the little fairy’s face when she grabbed Sofia’s hand is so sweet.  

What I love most about The Snow Dancer it is reminds us all of the sheer joy of a snow day.  Being a teacher, I am fortunate to still experience that delight even as an adult.  Here’s hoping that there is snow in the future forecast so we can all enjoy the true magic of a snow day (even if it happens on the weekend)!


Praise for The Snow Dancer!

“A spirited paean to the snow day that will appeal to children and their parents.” —Booklist

“Vivid imagery, onomatopoeia, and supple blue-gradient typography enliven Sofia’s journey as she learns to share her snow day. A dynamic tale of cooperation, adaptation, and friendship.” —Publishers Weekly


About the Author:

Addie Boswell is an artist and writer living in Portland, Oregon. She specializes in murals and picture books that focus on family, community, and the creative power of children. Her recent titles include Go, Bikes, Go! and Go, Boats, Go!, both illustrated by Alexander Mostov, and Five on the Bed, which she both wrote and illustrated. Her debut book, The Rain Stomper, illustrated by Eric Velasquez, was the winner of the Oregon Spirit Award. Learn more about the author at www.addieboswell.com.


About the Illustrator:

Mercè López is an artist from Barcelona, Spain. She holds a degree in illustration from Llotja Art School in Barcelona. Her recent title Lion of the Sky: Haiku for All Seasons by Laura Purdie Salas received multiple starred reviews and was named a Center for Children’s Books Gryphon Honor Book, an NCTE Notable Poetry Book, a Kirkus Best Picture Book, and a Parents Magazine Best Kids’ Book, among other accolades. Learn more about the artist at http://www.mercelopez.com and Instagram @mercelopez


 

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Giveaway!

One lucky winner will receive a copy of The Snow Dancer courtesy of Two Lions (U.S. addresses only). This giveaway is open from Friday, December 4, 2020 through Friday, December 11, 2020 ending at 10:00 p.m. EST.   Please note that book may take longer to ship so patience is appreciated.  Enter below or head over to my Twitter account, @lauramossa and retweet my Snow Dancer blog tour post.

 
Blog Tour, Giveaway, Picture Books

Blog Tour & Giveaway for The Rescue Rabbits by Eric Seltzer Illustrated by Roland Garrigue

 

About the Book:
Title: The Rescue Rabbits
Author: Eric Seltzer
Illustrator:  Roland Garrigue
Pub. Date:  November 10, 2020


Beagles and Books is excited to be part of the blog tour for The Rescue RabbitsSpecial thanks to Two Lions and Barbara Fisch of Blue Slip Media for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.


My Review:

If you are animal in trouble, there is no need to fear.  Ace, Chip, Dot, and Spot (also known as the Rescue Rabbits) are here!  Equipped with nifty gadgets such as a Super–Excavator to lift large animals and Rash–Away Lotion to soothe an itchy kangaroo, the Rescue Rabbits are always ready and prepared to help an animal in need. 

Not long after they return to their headquarters, the Rescue Rabbits receive a desperate call from Prince Rex.  And boy, is he in trouble!

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No problem is too big for the Rescue Rabbits!  But the first step to rescuing is finding Prince Rex.  Thankfully, Chip uses their Tracking Device to identify his location.  Once Prince Rex is free of both ants and chopsticks, the last step is getting him down from the tree. Unfortunately, Rex is not fond of ladders or ropes.  But the Rescue Rabbits remain cool and confident working together on a new plan which involves not only Super–Chopper 9000 but also Queen Rex, the prince’s mother.

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Propeller problems may stop other teams but Dot makes sure the Rescue Rabbits fly safely.  Once they reach Prince Rex, his mother’s voice (with the help of the Super–Megaphone) is all he needs to climb down on his own.   Worried about getting in trouble, Prince Rex shows contrition to his mother who warmly accepts not only his apology but also her son in her arms.

As a reading specialist, I have the pleasure of reading to a second grade class daily.  Thanks to Kindle Unlimited, I was able to share a digital version of this entertaining story with them this week.  Before reading, I asked the children to think about what the Rescue Rabbits can teach us.  Here are some of the lessons the students shared.

 

  • Help people.
  • Say you are sorry.
  • Work together.
  • Don’t give up. 

After the students shared their thoughts, we briefly discussed how the characters’ words and actions show positive traits such as responsibility, forgiveness, cooperation, collaboration, resourcefulness, creativity, and perseverance.  With an engaging and fun plot that champions positive virtues and bold and playful cartoon–like illustrations, the students (and this teacher) give The Rescue Rabbits two thumbs up!

 


Praise for The Rescue Rabbits!

“Readers will see in these pages a gentle spoof of cartoons and blockbusters that include endless product tie-ins, but the story also offers an amusing tribute to competency-themed pretend play.” —Publishers Weekly
 

About the Author:

Eric Seltzer received his BFA from the College for Creative Studies in Detroit, Michigan. He worked as a TV graphics designer and an advertising art director before writing and illustrating children’s books. His book Four Pups and a Worm was an IRA/CBC Children’s Book Choice, and The Long Dog was named a Gryphon Award Honor Book. He recently published the board book Arf! Buzz! Cluck! illustrated by David Creighton-Pester. Eric lives with his family in Michigan.

 
About the Illustrator:
 
Roland Garrigue is a prolific children’s book illustrator from Paris who attended art school in Strasbourg, France. His recent books include Cavekid Birthday, written by Cathy Breisacher, and Mother Ghost: Nursery Rhymes for Little Monsters, written by Rachel Kolar. Follow him on Instagram and Twitter @rolandgarrigue.

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Giveaway!

One lucky winner will receive a copy of The Rescue Rabbits courtesy of Two Lions (U.S. addresses only). This giveaway is open from Friday, November 13, 2020 through Friday, November 21, 2020 ending at 10:00 p.m. EST.   Please note that book may take longer to ship so patience is appreciated.  Enter below or head over to my Twitter account, @lauramossa and retweet my Rescue Rabbits blog tour post.