Monday, April 23, 2012

A book by its cover: dust bunnies, pie and a house

Welcome to my first book review!  I have three books for you today:  In Front of My House by Marianne Dubuc, Rhyming Dust Bunnies by Jan Thomas and The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows.




These reviews are completely my opinion and are not influenced in anyway by outside sources.  In regards to the children books reviewed, as a parent you are ultimately responsible for what your children read.  Please read what they read so you are informed on what they are learning.  I don't reveal plots, give spoilers or just summarize the books.  I don't enjoy reading books filled with cursing or sex so I tend to stay away from those.  This means I read very very few romance novels.  For the children's books I give the Princess' thumbs review and Boo's review (lets just say her reviews are interpretive and make more sense once you've read the book) in addition to my review rating.  My review scale can be found here or hover over the rating for a description.


In Front of My House by Marianne Dubuc


Please do not pin this photo or use it in any other way.

This is an English translation of the book Devant Ma Mason.  I chose this book with the intention of reading it to a preschool class (ages 4 and 5) and a first grade class (ages 6 and 7).  I try to find a book that will appeal to both age groups.  I almost didn't pick this one up because of its thickness, at around 60 pages it seems long for a children's book and I wasn't sure how long I could keep the attention of either class.  As I thumbed through it, I noticed that each page only had three to four words so I sat down with it.  The way each page is worded the book is able to hold the attention of both age groups I read to.  Both classes remained engaged with the book while I was reading and actually asked me to read it again when I had finished.  My six year old can easily read this to her younger sister (who has requested it be read to her quite often).  The pictures are very colorful and inspired conversation between my two with little side stories they made up to go along with the book.  Listening to them, I believe this book encourages imaginative play.  I recommend this book for ages 3-7.  It needs to be read to younger children but older children should be able to read it alone.  The pictures help with the more difficult words.  It is worth the read.  Our school system has the children take AR tests on books so I know this book is worth 0.5  AR points.

The Princess' rating is 2 thumbs up.  Boo's rating was "where did the stars come from."

The Snickety Things rating is



Rhyming Dust Bunnies by Jan Thomas

Please do not pin this photo or use it in any other way.

Ignore the expression her face, she got tickled when I was taking the picture and this was the best I could get.  And she wants me to point out that her fingernails were painted to look like lady bugs.

What attracted me to this book was the very colorful cover.  It is a very short book with few words, but it made me laugh a few times.  It is a story of four dust bunnies named Ed, Ned, Ted and Bob.  When I read it to the preschool class, they enjoyed the pictures much more than the story.  The humor was a bit more than they could understand.  Only a few of the students understood what rhyming was so it was difficult for them to grasp the concept of the book.  The first graders were able to understand the concept of the book much more easily although they still did not understand all the humor.  The first graders also participated  with the story while it was being read and wanted me to read the book again when I had finished.  While the younger group did not seem to get as much out of the book, the fact that many did not know what rhyming was tells me they would ultimately get the most out of it.  I believe rhyming plays a key role in developing reading skills.  I recommend this book for ages 2-6 and their parents.  The adults will get something from the humor.

The Princess' rating is two thumbs up.  Boo's rating is "the blue dust bunny looks sad." (Well, his "ears" are kind of droopy so she has a point.)

The Snickety Things rating is




The Guernsey  Literary and Potato Peel Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows


Sorry, no picture of me reading.  It is really hard to take a picture of yourself reading a book.  Go ahead, try it.

This is a review for the adults.

This book is the main reason I chose "a book by its cover" to be the title of my book review series.  I had passed it many times on the shelf and the title did not attract me at all.  It wasn't until someone recommended it to me and just gave me a teaser of what it was about did I decide to read it.  Once I started I couldn't put it down.  This book got me out of my "book zone" of reading mostly science fiction (you read the about us page and know I was a trained chemist, right?).

It takes place in 1946 after World War II ended but tells the story the Channel Island of Guernsey off the coast of England being occupied during the war.  The book  is written in the form of letters and telegrams between various characters.  This style of writing had me completely swept into the book and I kept forgetting that it was a work of fiction.  The characters were well developed and memorable.  I laughed with some and I cried for others.  The format allows for reading in short time periods.  I often found myself reading a letter or two in the pick up line at my daughters school or while on break at work.

For people who do not like to read books with a lot of cursing or sex, this is a good choice.  Parts may get you a bit out of your comfort zone, but it has very mild language if at all (this means nothing really stood out to me).

The Snickety Things rating is


Check these books out at your local library or follow the links below to find them on Amazon.  I'm going to go ahead and say that if you purchase a book by using one of these links I will make a little money off of it.  Jeff says I have to start paying for this blog somehow since I spend so much time working on it.  There, you've been warned, now go buy some books!  You really don't have to, but I'm not going to stop you.  After all I've warned you and I pasted the links in...

Kindle

Books







          








Please check out my Link Parties page to see the blogs where I may have showcased this post.  Thank you to the bloggers who host such wonderful parties.

14 comments:

  1. I love it! As a teacher I can't wait to get my hands on both of those books. Most of my first graders are very good at rhyming, but a couple could use a little more work on it. I have held that potato book in my hands on many occasions. I can't wait to read it! I'm almost halfway through 11/22/63 (Stephen King). I'm loving it, but it is so long!
    I like your rating system!!
    Jenny

    ReplyDelete
  2. Our class LOVES Dust Bunnies and the Potato Pie Book (my version of the title because I never put the words in the correct order) is one of my all time favorites! Thanks for sharing!

    Laurie
    Chickadee Jubilee

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! Glad you like them and I'm not the only one.

      Delete
  3. Oh thank you for the reminder of the post WWII book! Someone told me about it months ago, and I could never remember the name when I was at the library. I've got it written down now, so I'll finally get to read it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good, come back and let me know how you liked it.

      Delete
  4. I've seen the Literary Pie Society book several times and the cover has also never grabbed me. Or the title. I haven't read the kids books. Good luck with making money on your blog. :) I'm also an Amazon Affiliate and review a LOT of books but it hasn't paid off yet. Maybe someday... it works for some bloggers! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope if you choose to read it you like it. I was very surprised. Thanks for stopping by.

      Delete
  5. My students loved both both books from the Dust Bunnies series last year and had so much fun reading them {loudly} at centres. I have not heard of In Front of My House so I will definitely keep an eye out for it! I love great children's literature.

    Linking to you from The Grant Life.

    Have a lovely weekend!

    - Claire

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! I didn't even know there were other Dust Bunny books. I will have to look for them. My youngest is still obsessing over the In Front of My House book. She really likes it.

      Delete
  6. Hello! Stopping by for the first time to say hi! I appreciate your book reviews especially the ones for the kids. SO many new books since my kids were small and now I have grandchildren that I read to.

    Sweet place you have here! Nice to meet you :)
    Kindly, Lorraine

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you very much! I hope you are able to find some good books to read to them.

      Delete
  7. You did a fabulous job with these reviews. I love that you're giving multiple perspectives from your children and the children from the library. You're absolutely right about rhyming being key to the development of early literacy skills. Thanks so much for sharing at Whimsy Wednesdays.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Jenny! I'm glad you liked the reviews, I was a bit nervous on how they would go over.

      Delete

Thank you for leaving a comment! I enjoy reading all of them.

Right now I have comments moderated. If you don't see your comment right away, that may be why.

I try to respond to each comment. If you need a long answer, make sure you are not a no reply commenter and I will send you an email.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...