Archive for the ‘MY BOOK REVIEWS’ Category


Article first published as Book Review: Secret Service Saint by Janet Ann Collins on Blogcritics.

Are you a parent looking for ways to teach your child about the true spirit of giving? If you answered yes, you must read Janet Ann Collins’ book: Secret Service Saint.

It is a book that tells of the joy of giving. Recommended for three to eight-year-olds, it is based on legends about the famous Saint Nicholas, who discovered the fun of doing secret good deeds.

Reading this book will teach children about having compassion for people in need. It will also help children understand that we all at times need help from others.

The best lesson to be learned is if we have the means by which to help someone else we should always do it. Sometimes children have a hard time sharing their belongings with others.

Lastly, this is a good book to curl up with during the Christmas season.

Parents can use the book to teach children about the legend of Santa Claus.

The fine illustrations done by Eugene E Ruble, a 30-year distinguished member of the St. Louis Artists’ Guild brings life to the story.

Author: Janet Ann Collins
Artist: Eugene Ruble
Print ISBN 13: 978-1-935137-98-6 & ISBN 10: 1-935137-98-0
eBook ISBN 13: 978-1-935137-99-3 & ISBN 10: 1-935137-99-9



Article first published as Book Review: The King’s Christmas List by Eldon Johnson on Blogcritics.The King’s Christmas List is the most incredible book I have read about the true spirit of Christmas.

The main character Emma has been invited to the King’s birthday party. Emma and her dog Shu-Shu are on their way to the party. Before they arrive they come across some people who are hungry and cold.

Emma’s compassion shined brightly when she gave away first her cape and then her favorite teddy bear. Next she gave away a cake she and her mom made.

The story tries to portray the true spirit of Christmas by showing it is better to give than to receive. Upon arriving to the King’s birthday party, Emma felt very badly that she did not have anything to give to the King for his birthday because she had given the cake and her other belongings to the needy people she met on the way to the party.

The part of the story that resonates well with me is Emma did not know that she was being tested.

The King said to Emma: “Anyone who desires to give Me a gift, behold! Give food to the hungry and clothes to the cold, Give care to the poor, both young and old, Whatever gift you’ve given to a person in need, Is indeed a gift you have given to Me”

It is truly sad that the true meaning of Christmas has become a way for merchants to make a profit. This delightful story should be in every home and it should be read to every child because it can be used to teach children what Christmas is all about.

In this text billed as suitable for four- to eight-year-olds, the illustrations are simply the best I have ever seen. Kudos to Bonnie Leick for doing an outstanding job and for making the story jump off the page.



  • PDF eBook download $5.00 ($$$)
  • eBook on CD $9.95 + $5.95 shipping ($$$$$)
  • print book $10.95 + $6.95 shipping ($$$$$)
  • Article first published as Book Review: How to Turn Your Book Club into a Spectacular Event by Mayra Calvani on Blogcritics.

    Are you a book enthusiast? Are you passionate about sharing what you have read with friends? If you answered yes, you might want to consider starting a book club. If you are clueless on how to start a book club you must read Mayra Calvani’s new book, How to Turn Your Book Club into a Spectactular Event.

    This book is designed for girls aged nine and up. The book details the how, where, and when you can start a book club. The book is well thought through in order to make it easy for a young person to understand and put the suggestions to practical use.

    The book has two sections. Part one explains the steps in starting a book club; part two is dedicated to the different book categories and genres. The author also gives many examples of categories and genres.

    This is an ideal book for girls who love to read. They can take their reading to the next level by forming a club designed to discuss what they have read. I can see how forming a club will help enhance learning because one must pay attention to minute details in order to talk about what you have read to others.

    Though the book is designed for teens, in my opinion young and old can benefit from reading it. After finishing it, I’m inspired to start a book club of my own. I’m even thinking about starting a book club with my middle and high school students.

    The cover art by Kurt Ozinga is very appealing and pleasing to the eyes. Looking at the cover captivated me and made me want to read the book.

    I am grateful to the author for providing me with a free copy of her book for review.



    Article first published as Book Review: A Necklace for Jiggsy by Kit Grady on Blogcritics.

    Author and Artist: Kit Grady
    PRINT ISBN: 978-1-61633-091-0; 1616330910
    eBook ISBN: 978-1-61633-092-7; 1616330929

    Here lately I have been doing a lot of reviews of books published by Guardian Angel Publishing. Every book I have reviewed has left me with a warm fuzzy feeling in my heart. This book, A Necklace for Jiggsy, is just as wonderful as the previous ones I have reviewed. There is a valuable lesson to be learned from each book.

    Jiggsy is a junk yard dog always in search of food. The life of a junk yard dog is not easy. Jiggsy must get up pretty early if he wants to get a bite to eat. The yard is not a safe place because Jiggsy is surrounded with thieves. His only possession is his favorite pillow.

    Jiggsy finds a very expensive necklace. Will he keep the necklace or will he return it to its owner? When someone steals Jiggsy’s favorite pillow, it makes him stop to think about what if feels like when someone steals something of value from you.

    I am very fond of a Necklace for Jiggsy because it can be used to teach young children the importance of being honest, and that it is not good to keep something they found if they know to whom the item belongs to.

    It is very rare to come across a great book with a great message written and illustrated by the same person. A Necklace For Jiggsy is written and illustrated by Kit Grady. Ms. Grady brought her story to full life with her brilliant and masterful illustrations. She bestowed a huge honor upon me by giving me a free copy of her book for review.



    I love reading books that convey good, wholesome and positive messages to children.  Max Lucado’s book One Hand, Two Hands is a well written book that teaches children how to use their hands to serve others.

    Children learn best by example; consequently the author gives several examples on how a child can use his or her hand to help others.   I especially like the following examples: 

     “write grandma a letter, with hands and a hug, we make people feel better, wash dishes with Mommy.”

    The colorful illustrations brought the story to life.  Every child should have a copy of this wonderful, well written book.

    Thank you to Thomas Nelson for providing me with a free copy of this outstanding book for review.


    Article first published as Book Review: Animal Sound Mix-Up by Connie Arnold on Blogcritics.

    Animal Sound Mix-up
    Guardian Angel Animals & Pets

    Author: Connie Arnold
     Artist: Kit Grady
    PRINT ISBN: 978-1-61633-083-5;  161633083X 
    eBook ISBN: 978-1-61633-084-2; 1 616330848

     Do you like reading to your toddlers? Are you a proud grandma and grandpa looking for a good book to read to your precious grandkids? If you answered yes to either question, look no further. Connie Arnold’s Animal Sound Mix-Up will bring sheer delight to your little bundle of joy.

    Written in beautiful rhyme, the book explores the sound that domestic, farm and jungle animals make. To help young toddlers learn about sounds, the author poses silly questions like: What would happen if a cat were to moo? Or what if a lion said meow… or if a donkey said bow-wow? The colorful pictures on every page will keep a young child captivated while learning what sounds goes with what animal in a fun way.

    I can visualize the learning that can take place reading this book to a toddler. The book can be used as a very handy educational tool to teach young children beginning sounds.

    Homeschooling has become a viable option for many families; this book would be a good choice for teaching first sounds through rhyming. Some examples of rhyming used throughout the book are: say, day, way- bear, stare- howl, owl- squeak, speak-meow, and bow-wow.

    The author graciously provided me with a PDF file of this book for review. After reading it once, I went back and read it again and again. The illustrations by Kit Grady added more depth to the story. I highly recommend this book to any parent or grandparent looking for a good book that can be both fun and educational


    Would you like to teach your children how their actions can make a huge impact in someone’s life? Are you looking for ways to instill in your child that every choice he or she makes, good or bad can make a difference in the life of others?  Andy Andrews’ The Boy Who Changed the World will help you accomplish the task of teaching your child how everything we do in our lives can make a difference in the world we live in.

    The book is about three boys:  Norman Borlaug, Henry Wallace, and George Washington Carver.  The author cleverly used the butterfly effect to illustrate how the action of each boy had a ripple effect on the entire world.  Any child reading this story will be encouraged to do positive things that will perhaps change the world.

    The most inspiring part of this book is the clear message that each one of us can make a huge difference in the life of mankind by engaging in the smallest of act.  The illustration helps the story jump off the page.   I really enjoyed reading this well written book. 

    I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program.


    Article first published as Book Review: The Bug That Plagued the Entire Third Grade by Lori Calabrese on Blogcritics.

    Would you like to take a trip down memory lane? Do you remember being in the third grade? I do not recall my own experience, but I remember quite well when my three children attended third grade. I will never forget the many times they scared me half to death by bringing home snakes and many other creatures.

    Lori Calabrese’s The Bug That Plagued the Entire Third Grade is a delightful story about Matt. Matt is determined to enter his school’s Bug-A-Fair. To enter the contest he must present a bug. Lucky for Matt, he has found the perfect bug, but things take a turn for the worst after Matt becomes ill with a cold.

    Matt has to convince his mom to let him go to school so he can submit his priceless bug to the Bug-A-Fair. His mother agrees. Matt proudly arrives to school to submit his bug, but much to his dismay, after a strong sneeze, the lid comes off the bug jar and his bug flies away into the third grade class.

    Will Matt be able to capture his bug in time to enter the school’s contest? Or will his teacher send him home to recover from his cold? This story will warm your heart because it showcases the adventures of a young boy who wants to impress his teacher and win the attention of his fellow classmates.

    Reading the story will surely bring a huge smile to your face, just like it did me, because it reminded me so much of similar adventures my three children and their friends experienced during their elementary years in school.

    Every elementary school should have a copy of this precious book in their school library.


    -For more information about the book visit Lori at:

  • Paperback: 24 pages
  • Publisher: Dragonfly Publishing, Incorporated (August 4, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1936381052
  • ISBN-13: 978-1936381050

    Title: The Slippery Art Of Book Reviewing
    Authors: Mayra Calvani and Anne K. Edwards
    Publisher: Twilight Times Books
    Copyright: June 2008
    ISBN:-13- 978-1-933353-22-7
    Format: Trade Paperback
    Genre: Book Reviewing
    Rating: 5 stars

    Are you a new author? Do you need a comprehensive manual that will help you understand how to promote yourself and your book? Getting your book reviewed is the most important step you can take to help you advance. 

    After reading the book, “The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing” by Mayra Calvani and Anne K. Edwards, I learned about the importance of quality book reviews.  This purposefully written guide explores how to set up your own website for reviewing, how to hone in your skills to become a well sought after book reviewer, along with numerous, well-designed aspects of book reviewing.

    The resource section is invaluable. Towards the back of The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing, there is an abundance of information, including contacts for various publishers, online, and print media. Mentioned are several references to Amazon. Because of the impact that Amazon reviews have on books sales, Amazon reviewers will find this particular guide to be very supportive.

    It is an exceptionally instructive book. A few topics covered in the book that I found to be very helpful are as follows:

    Five keys to being a good reviewer
    A reviewer’s responsibility to the reader, author and publisher
    The difference between book reviews, reports and press releases
    Pre-publication versus post-publication reviews
    Dozens of print and online venues for getting started as a reviewer

    I highly recommend this book for any would-be reviewer, but also, for any author who would like to get reviewed!


    6/7/2010 12:55:28 PM
    I am a book reviewer for Booksneeze. I am posting my review of this incredible book. Please feel free to leave comments.

    Any woman reading  Dale Bourke’s book  “Embracing Your second Calling will be glad she did.  Here are some of the things  I learned from reading this incredible book. 

    1) The first half of a woman’s life is centered on raising her family, but God has a special purpose for women in the second half of life that can be significant and revolutionary.  It is so heartwarming to have learned that God is calling us from others to him.  He wants to do more through us than we could possibly know.  Sometimes we may not know what God has in store for us, but reading this book will enlighten you in a profound way.

    2) The author’s honest self-reflection made me stop to think about my own life.  What is it am I supposed to do?  How  will I accomplish that which God is calling me to do?  Simply put, the author   recommends that we let go of the  past.  “ If we hold on to what once defined us, we will miss out on the authentic identity we are being called to.”  This statement made me stop to reflect on the bad situations of my past that I have been holding on to.  I  quickly learned it is time for me to let  it all go .

    3)  It is not always easy letting go of the past.   For those of us who may feel upended about the changes to come, the author suggests that we follow Naomi’s example.  In the book of Ruth, Naomi is faced with many challenges, but the one thing that helped her be victorious was her relationship with God.   “Prayer is a nonnegotiable, and it must take on new meaning and a new role in our lives if we are going to live with passion and purpose.”

    I am so very happy I decided to read  Embracing Your second Calling.  This book is a wonderful resource for any woman who is serious about learning what God has in store for her  the rest of  her life.  I know now that God is calling me to help raise money for my native Haiti.   I  lost thirteen cousins in the January earthquake,   I am   putting into practical application what I have learned from reading this wonderful book.    The future looks very promising!