Book Review & Giveaway: Nurse Mommy by Kristyn Boland

Book Title:  Nurse Mommy by Kristyn Boland
Category:  Children’s Fiction (Ages 2-10),  38 pages
Genre:  Children’s Picture Book
Publisher:  Mascot Books
Release date:   June, 2021
Content Rating:  G for everyone.


Book Description:

What does Mommy do when she leaves for work? From giving medicine to using her stethoscope, Nurse Mommy’s job is important because she helps patients get better. But what about her family back home—does Nurse Mommy really have to go to work? Nurse Mommy helps kids understand what the nurse they love is doing when they go to work at night.


Order the Book:
Amazon ~ B&N ~ Mascot Books

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

The author of Nurse Mommy is a nurse, and after she had a child, she couldn’t find any children’s books that explained why she wasn’t home at night. So she wrote one herself! I don’t know how she did it. I was a nurse who worked nights when my son was little, and I wouldn’t have had time to write a book. What an amazing mom!

Nurse Mommy not only explains what a nurse does in simple terms, but it rhymes. The illustrations are bright and colorful and will definitely keep the attention of young children. This is a great book for all children, not just children of nurses.

About the Author

Kristyn Boland lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, with her husband, Tim, her son, Owen, and their dog, Bo. She graduated from East Carolina University College of Nursing in 2014. Kristyn started her career working in Pediatric Intensive Care and later moved to Postpartum Care, where she takes care of moms and their new babies in the hospital. When she returned to work after having her son, she wanted to find a book for her husband to read to her son at bedtime explaining where she was and why she went to work at night. When she couldn’t find one, she decided to write it herself!

connect with the author: website instagram

Giveaway

Enter to win a signed copy of Kristyn Boland’s NURSE MOMMY! (one winner/USA only)

Giveaway

Follow the Tour

June 14 – Cover Lover Book Review – book review / giveaway
June 14 – Gina Rae Mitchell – book review / author interview / giveaway
June 14 – Rockin’ Book Reviews – book review / guest post / giveaway
June 15 – I Read Kid’s Books – book review / guest post / giveaway
June 15 – A Mama’s Corner of the World – book review / giveaway
June 16 – Bound 4 Escape – book review / giveaway
June 17 – Jazzy Book Reviews – book review / giveaway
June 17 – Writer with Wanderlust – book review / guest post / giveaway
June 21 – Lisa’s Reading – book spotlight / giveaway
June 22 – @booking.with.janelle – book review
June 23 – Locks, Hooks and Books – book review / giveaway
June 24 – Cheryl’s Book Nook – book review / giveaway
June 24 – The Adventures of a Travelers Wife – book review / author interview / giveaway
June 25 – Westveil Publishing – book review / guest post / giveaway
June 28 – Reading is My Passion – book review
June 29 – Pick a Good Book – book review / author interview / giveaway
June 29 – @twilight_reader – book review
June 30 – Kam’s Place – book review
June 30 – Laura’s Interests – book review / guest post / giveaway
July 1 – Splashes of Joy – book review / author interview / giveaway
July 1 – The Phantom Paragrapher – book review
July 2 – Literary Flits – book spotlight / giveaway

Book Review & Giveaway: The Missing Egg (Bobos Babes Adventures) by Karen Bobos

Book Title:  BOBOS BABES ADVENTURES: THE MISSING EGG by Karen Bobos
Category:  Children’s Fiction (Ages 3-7),  28 pages
Genre:  Children’s Picture Book
Publisher:  Playpen Publishing
Release date:   March, 2021
Content Rating:  G for everyone.


Book Description:

In the magical land of Harmony, the Bobos Babes love adventure and helping friends in need. When they find out that the swan family has lost a soon-to-hatch swan egg, they are quick to help … before it’s too late! Young readers and their families will enjoy the return of the Bobos Babes and their animal friends in this second title in the fanciful read-aloud picture book series. The Bobos Babes Adventures collection brings families stories of exciting exploits, magical missions, and caring friendships, showcasing that kindness, generosity, and thoughtfulness always win.


Buy the Book
Amazon

Bobos Babes

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Bobos Babes are a princess, an angel, and a fairy who use their magical powers to help those in need. When they came across Russell the Swan, they knew that there was something troubling him. He lost one of the eggs he was supposed to be sitting on! I got tickled, and I know kids will too, when Russell kept going on about the lost egg and he didn’t realize that his baby was right there.

The Missing Egg isn’t only funny but it teaches that a baby swan is called a cygnet. It’s told in rhyme and it has adorable illustrations with vibrant colors. This is definitely a good book to read to the children in your life over and over.

 

About the Author

Bobos began writing poetry and stories at the early age of ten. She is a life-long Chicagoan who now raises her family in the downtown area. During the 2020 Coronavirus Pandemic, Chicago also became a city of unrest. Trying to keep her three young daughters in a world of magic during such scary times, the Bobos Babes Adventures were born. Her goal was to create a world of Harmony for her family and hopefully for others to escape, even if only for a moment. The first book of the series, The Case of the Giggles, was published in December 2020. The Missing Egg launched in March 2021. Thus far, she has written ten Bobos Babes Adventures and two chapter books. Two additional books, The Lion’s Secret and The Bobcat Birthday Party, are coming in 2021.

connect with the author: website ~ facebook ~ instagram

Giveaway

Enter to win a signed copy of Karen Bobos’ BOBOS BABES ADVENTURES: THE MISSING EGG! (one winner/USA only)

Follow the Tour

June 1– Cover Lover Book Review – book review / giveaway
June 2 –Reading is My Passion – book review
June 2 –Rockin’ Book Reviews – book review / guest post / giveaway
June 3 – Laura’s Interests – book review / guest post / giveaway
June 4 – Literary Flits – book spotlight / giveaway
June 7 – Books Lattes & Tiaras – book spotlight
June 8 – Cheryl’s Book Nook – book review / giveaway
June 9 – Icefairy’s Treasure Chest – book review / giveaway
June 9 – Pick a Good Book – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
June 10 – The Momma Spot – book review / giveaway
June 11 – Lisa’s Reading – book review / giveaway
June 14 – Gina Rae Mitchell – book review / author interview / giveaway
June 15 – Bound 4 Escape – book review / giveaway
June 16 – Jazzy Book Reviews – book review / guest post / giveaway
June 17 – Locks, Hooks and Books – book review / giveaway
June 18 – Splashes of Joy – book review / author interview / giveaway
June 21 – Stephanie Jane – book spotlight / giveaway
June 22 – Kam’s Place – book review

Book Review & Giveaway: Mockingbird in Mark Twain’s Hat by Kaia Alexander

Mockingbird in Mark Twain’s Hat by Kaia Alexander

Publisher: Waterside Press, Oct, 2020
Category: Children’s illustrated chapter book
ISBN: 978-1949001914
Available in Print and ebook, 138 pages

Mockingbird in Mark Twain’s Hat, is an adventure story full of animals that talk. Wynne is a precocious mockingbird born in the rural south in the late 1800s. His whole family are singers, but at four days old, he wants to be a novelist just like his hero, Mark Twain.

When crows attack his nest, he’s swept away on an epic adventure along the Mississippi River. Wynne learns to read and write, makes new friends in surprising places, and is mentored by Mark Twain himself. Full of delightful quotes from Mark Twain, this novel for children ages 8-12 shines with important lessons of character, perseverance, love, and the importance of friendship.

Amazon
IndieBound

Guest Review by Sal

‘Mockingbird in Mark Twain’s Hat’ by Kaia Alexander is an unexpected delight and an enjoyable read for all ages.

Beginning in the quiet, peaceful nest of a family of mockingbirds, the story centers around a little bird named Wynne. Wynne knows that he is supposed to want to grow up to do regular mockingbird things like soaring over the fields and singing songs, but what he actually wants is to become a writer.

Wynne’s hero is the famous southern writer Mark Twain, who is still alive in the novel, as it is set in 1898. As Wynne and his siblings slowly learn to fly, danger soon comes to the nest in the form of a gray cat who nearly kills Wynne. Thankfully, he is saved by a little girl, but the girl brings Wynne back to her home, far away from his family.

Trying to stay brave, Wynne imagines the wonderful story that he will write from his adventures, but he doesn’t realize just how extensive his adventure is going to be. The story takes Wynne along the Mississippi river, where he eventually gets to meet Mark Twain himself.

Told from the perspective of Wynne, this story is a beautifully told middle grade novel that will capture children’s imaginations and teach them a lot of interesting information along the way. There were things this book taught me about mockingbirds and Mark Twain that even I didn’t know, and it has such fun prose and quick chapters that it doesn’t feel dragged down by information.

I recommend this highly to anyone who has a young reader in their house, or any adults who enjoy a fun book. Alexander’s take on talking and thinking animals is cute and light-hearted, but reveals a stronger message as the novel goes on. Don’t let this one fly away!

Giveaway

This giveaway is for 1 print copy to 3 winners. It is open to Canada and the U.S. only and ends on July 1, 2021,midnight pacific time.

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Follow the Tour

Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus May 27 Kickoff & Guest Post

Lu Ann Rockin’ Book Reviews June 1 Guest Post

Shiloh Amazon June 2 Review

Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus June 3 Review

Michelle Reading Authors Network June 4 Review

Alicis  Amazon June 4 Review

Lu Ann Rockin’ Book Reviews June 7 Review

Cheryl’s Book Nook June 10 Review & Excerpt

Shanna Amazon June 11 Review

Sal Bound 4 Escape  June 14 Guest Review

Amanda My Tangled Skeins Book Reviews June 15 Review & Interview

Anastasia Living in a Bookworld June 16 Guest Review & Excerpt

Chrissy Reads a LOT June 18 Review & Excerpt

Betsy H. Goodreads June 23 Review

All Things Jill-Elizabeth June 25 Review & Excerpt

Katy Celtic Lady’s Reviews June 28 Guest Review

DTChantel Amazon June 29 Review

Michelle I Read Kid’s Books June 30 Review

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Book Review & Giveaway: City of Deadly Dreams by Elyse Douglas

City of Deadly Dreams: Mystery by Elyse Douglas

Publisher:  Broadback (May 1, 2021)
Category: Hard-Boiled Mystery, Private Investigator Mystery
ISBN: B08Y86X4B3
250 pages

Dane Cooper, an NYC Hell’s Kitchen private detective, is hired by a Tennessee man to find his handsome, 20-year-old son named Elvis, who has been missing for several months. Though hesitant at first, Dane takes the case because he needs the money.  Dane soon learns that the case centers around a beautiful, mysterious blonde, named Darcy. Against his better judgment, he falls for her, believing she might lead him to Elvis.  Her dangerous secrets trouble him, and he realizes he can’t trust her.

Dane’s investigation turns deadly when he learns that Elvis has left a trail of pregnant young girls, unhappy husbands, and vengeful women.  Dane becomes a target as he struggles to find Elvis and save him from the killers who are closing in. Can Dane save Elvis and himself, or will Darcy’s secrets get them all killed?

Amazon

Guest Review by Katy

A unique mystery with a noir style! ‘City of Deadly Dreams: A Mystery,’ by the husband and wife writing team of Elyse Douglas is unlike any mystery I have ever read.

A seamless blend of noir and 21st century crime solving that kept me guessing the whole way through, this novel gave me a new standard for storytelling.

The mystery centers around a young man named, of all things, Elvis. Elvis Lipps is a 20 year-old man who was seemingly on his way to rock and roll stardom when he disappeared suddenly.

Enter private detective Dane Cooper, a former policeman with a penchant for witty repartee and a dark past. Elvis’ father, Abner seeks out Cooper’s help in finding his lost son. Abner believes that Elvis is the reincarnation of the King himself, Elvis Presley, and he has been trying to get the young man into the music industry for his entire life.

Although Cooper doesn’t believe the reincarnation story, he agrees to look for Elvis in the unkind streets of New York City. But there is another aspect of Elvis’ story that Cooper must investigate, the teacher that he reportedly had an affair with while he was still in high school. In meeting the teacher, a beautiful young woman named Darcy, Cooper ends up getting caught up in more of a tangled web than he asked for, and he begins to fall for the woman himself.

The writing in this was superb as well as the sense of place and atmosphere. I loved the noir-like style that reminded me of some of the classic detective movies from the 20th century. Dane Cooper is a great POV character and I would love to read more books with his character. I hope that they decide to turn this into a series!

About the Author

Elyse Douglas is the pen name for the married writing team Elyse Parmentier and Douglas Pennington. Elyse grew up near the sea, roaming the beaches, reading and writing stories and poetry, receiving a master’s degree in English Literature.  She has enjoyed careers as an English teacher, an actress and a speech-language pathologist.

Douglas has worked as a graphic designer, a corporate manager and an equities trader.  He attended the Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music and played the piano professionally for many years.

Website: www.elysedouglas.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/douglaselyse
Facebook: www.facebook.com/elyse.authorsdouglas

Giveaway

This giveaway is for 1 ebook copy to 2 winners. It is open to the U.S. only and ends on July 1, 2021,midnight pacific time. Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow the Tour

Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus May 31 Kickoff & Interview

Carole C. Amazon June 1 Review

Lu Ann Rockin’ Book Reviews June 3 Guest Post

Dee Donadees Corner June 3 Review

DT Chantel Amazon June 7 Review

Avonna Loves Genres June 9 Review & Excerpt

Katy Bound 4 Escape June 10 Guest Review

Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus June 11 Review

Laura Lee Celticlady’s Reviews June 14 Guest Review & Guest Post

Becky Life as Rog June 15 Review

Amanda My Tangled Skeins Book Reviews June 17 Guest Review & Excerpt

Denise D. Amazon June 21 Review

Wendy Wall-to-wall books June 22 Review

Nadene Totally Addicted to Reading June 23 Review & Excerpt

Betty Toots Book Reviews June 24 Review & Guest Post

GudReader Goodreads June 25 Review

Bee Book Pleasures June 28 Review & Interview

Amy Locks, Hooks and Books June 30 Review

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Book Review & Giveaway: Rambee Boo’s Lake Vacation! by Reena Korde Pagnoni

Book Title:  Rambee Boo’s Lake Vacation by Reena Korde Pagnoni
Category:  Children’s Fiction (Ages 3-7),  24 pages
Genre:  Children’s Picture Book
Publisher:  Waman Books
Release date:   April, 2021
Content Rating:  G for everyone.


Book Description:

The Rambee Boo Crew take a summer vacation to the Lake. Rock and Rambee are having so much fun that they don’t realize that Rambee Boo keeps dropping his Sock. Will Sock make it home with the duo at the end of the trip?


Buy the Book
Amazon ~ Waman Books

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Rambee Boo’s Lake Vacation is a cute story about Rambee Boo’s family taking him to the lake when they go on vacation. He has only one job (besides having fun): to keep track of his sock. Luckily, Mom keeps track of it or it would be long gone!

I like how each day they do something fun and Rambee Boo has so much fun that he forgets Sock. Then each morning:

“Rambee wakes and is glad to see,
Mom found Sock and he’s back safely.
Rock cries, ‘C’mon, Rambee, let’s go play,
And please try not to lose Sock today.'”

With the rhymes, the rhythm, and the colorful illustrations, this is a book that children may want you to read over and over…It’s also fun to look for Sock everywhere they go!

About the Author

I began writing THE RAMBEE BOO SERIES after we added a fur baby to our family, during the Covid-19 pandemic quarantine. The characters in the series are based off my youngest son Rocky (aka Rock), and our rambunctious puppy Rambo (aka Rambee Boo). Whenever there’s trouble, these two are usually at the center of it! I graduated from West Windsor-Plainsboro High school in 2000 and went on to get my B.A. from Rutgers University, New Brunswick. I currently live in New Jersey with my husband, my three children and of course…my Rambee Boo! I’ve always had a great love for children’s books and started collecting them in college. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to write my own series to add to our collection. I hope these books will continue to grow and foster children’s love for reading. I can only hope that my readers enjoy reading my books as much as I enjoy writing them!

connect with the author: website ~ facebook ~ instagram ~ goodreads

Giveaway

Enter to win a signed copy of RAMBEE BOO’S LAKE VACATION! (one winner/USA only)

https://gleam.io/3udgx/rambee-boos-lake-vacation-book-tour-giveaway

Follow the Tour

May 24 –My Journey Back the Journey Back – book review / giveaway
May 24 –Cover Lover Book Review – book review / giveaway
May 25 – Rockin’ Book Reviews – book review / guest post / giveaway
May 25 – She Just Loves Books – book review / giveaway
May 26 – Pick a Good Book – book review / author interview / giveaway
May 27 – Icefairy’s Treasure Chest – book review / giveaway
May 28 – Writer with Wanderlust – book review / guest post / giveaway
May 31 –Nighttime Reading Center – book review / giveaway
May 31 –Kam’s Place – book review
June 1 –Reading is My Passion – book review
June 2 – The Adventures of a Travelers Wife – book review / guest post / giveaway
June 3 – Jazzy Book Reviews – book review / author interview / giveaway
June 4 – Cheryl’s Book Nook – book review / giveaway
June 7 – Splashes of Joy – book review / author interview / giveaway
June 8 – Locks, Hooks and Books – book review / giveaway
June 8 – I Read Kid’s Books – book review / guest post / giveaway
June 9 – Bound 4 Escape – book review / giveaway
June 9 – Laura’s Interests – book review / guest post / giveaway
June 10 – Gina Rae Mitchell – book review / author interview / giveaway
June 11 – Lisa’s Reading – book review / giveaway
TBD – I’m Into Books – book review / giveaway

Book Review & Giveaway: September to Remember

A September to Remember: Searching for Culinary Pleasures at the Italian Table (Book Three) – Lombardy, Tuscany, Campania, Apulia, and Lazio (Roma) (Savoring the Olde Ways Series, 3) by Carole Bumpus

Publisher:  She Writes Press (April 27, 2021)
Category: Culinary/Travel Memoir & Non-Fiction
ISBN: 978-1631527272
Available in Print and ebook, 245 pages


Description

This culinary travel memoir is an invitation to join in on a month-long trek through Italy, all in the search of the true Italian experience. Sprinkled with unforgettable characters, you will sup on sumptuous traditional foods, sip regional wines, and enjoy vast panoramas of extraordinary beauty. You may find yourself dancing at harvest festivals, climbing through Etruscan tombs, traipsing among Roman ruins, or bathing in ancient Roman termes (hot springs).

You may also enjoy climbing to the heights of wonder in Capri or to the top of St. Peter’s Basilica. Or delight in soaking up the ancient and cultural history in Milan, Firenze (Florence), Amalfi, Pompeii, Lecce and Rome. You can bask in the sun and rugged beauty of the Tyrrhenian Sea, the Adriatic Sea, or the gorgeous Amalfi Coast. Or you can chat for hours over family meals while collecting a compendium of regional and traditional recipes (cucina povera), while you capture a rare glimpse inside the secrets to the Mediterranean psyche. It is truly a trip of a lifetime.

Amazon
Barnes&Noble
IndieBound

Guest Review by Sage

Over 20 years ago, Carole Bumpus and her husband, Winston, took a trip to Italy. The couple toured much of the country, starting in Milan and going on to see Tuscany, Campania, Apulia and Lazio (which includes the capital city of Rome).

Although this vacation took place in 1998, Carole and her husband still look back on it fondly and now, all this time later, Carole has created a chronicle of this trip in her memoir, ‘A September to Remember: Searching for Culinary Pleasures at the Italian Table.’

It is safe to say that this book took me by surprise. I’m not all that knowledgeable about Italy or Italian history so I wasn’t expecting to enjoy this so much, but I definitely did! Bumpus has a way with words that is truly captivating and she made me feel as though I was on this vacation with her, standing in a museum in Rome or a vineyard in Poderi. The beautiful small villages she saw and the warm and inviting people that she met were probably my favorite part of this memoir. It’s obvious that this was an unforgettable trip, and I can fully understand why she felt the need to document it all this time later.

‘A September To Remember’ transcends the genre of memoir and even of travel memoirs, by adding several elements that bring so much more to the book. For starters, Bumpus has included several recipes that she collected during her time in Italy. From Risotto al Pescatore to Caprese Salad there is something for everyone in this section of the book. Even if you generally aren’t a fan of Italian food, I recommend giving some of these recipes a shot. You won’t regret it!

Between this and the rich courses on Italian history, I had such an all-encompassing experience with this book that I had trouble putting it down!

5 yummy stars for this one!

About the Author

Multi award winning author, Carole Bumpus is a retired family therapist, who lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. She began writing about food and travel when she stumbled upon the amazing stories of women and war in France. Her historical novel, A Cup of Redemption, was published in October 2014, and her unique companion cookbook, Recipes for Redemption: A Companion Cookbook to A Cup of Redemption, was released in August 2015.

Books One and Two of her Savoring the Olde Ways series, Searching for Family and Traditions at the French Table, were published in August 2019 and 2020; her third book in the series, A September to Remember: Searching for Culinary Pleasures at the Italian Table is due out April 27, 2021. All five books have been published by She Writes Press which is part of SparkPoint Studio, LLC.

Website: https://carolebumpus.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/carolejbumpus
Twitter: https://twitter.com/CaroleBumpus
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/carole.bumpus/

Giveaway

This giveaway is for 3 copies of ‘A September To Remember’, one copy per winner. This giveaway is open to Canada and the U.S. only and ends on June 1, 2021.  Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.

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Follow the Tour

Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus Apr 12 Kickoff & Interview

Jas International Book Promotion Apr 13 Review

Lu Ann Rockin’ Book Reviews Apr 14 Guest Post

GudReader Goodreads Apr 16 Review

Liam Goodreads Apr 19 Review

Beth’s Book-Nook Blog April 20 Review

Lisa’s Writopia Apr 21 Review

Lisa’s Writopia Apr 23 Guest Post

Sherry My Journey Back Apr 26 Review

Sherry My Journey Back Apr 27 Excerpt

Gracie Goodreads Apr 27 Review

Andy K. Amazon Apr 28 Review

Denise Amazon Apr 29 Review

MK French Girl Who Reads Apr 30 Review

Zohar Man of la Book May 3 Review

Zohar Man of la Book May 4 Guest Post

Ellen Goodreads May 4 Review

Miller Amazon May 5 Review

Harvee BookDogBird May 6 Review & Guest Post

Mike M. Goodreads May 7 Review

Sol Celticlady’s Reviews May 10 Review & Excerpt

Katy Goodreads May 13 Review

Smitty Bookbub May 14 Review

Sage Nor Bound 4 Escape May 17 Review

Bee Book Pleasures May 18 Review & Interview

Linda Lu Goodreads May 21 Review

Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus May 25 Review

Lu Ann Rockin’ Book Reviews May 26 Review

Sarah Amazon May 27 Review

Betty Toot’s Book Reviews May 28 Review & Excerpt

Amber M. Amazon May 31 Review

Advance Praise

“A cultural and gastronomic tour through Italy by train, car, and ferry with culinary delights at every turn…Elaborate descriptions of almost every meal and snack turn this compelling travel book into an enjoyable vicarious experience…A joyous book of Italian history, traditions, and food that’s worth savoring.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Carole Bumpus’s culinary travelogue A September to Remember is written in the inviting voice of a learner. [Her] exploration as an American abroad will draw in those who hunger for travel as much as they hunger for flavor. For Bumpus, appreciating food requires a strong sense of people and place; in fact, she regards food and culture as inseparable….Bumpus embraces authenticity over simplicity, encouraging cooks to rise to the challenge. A September to Remember is a food narrative that brings the heart of Italy to tables around the world.”—Foreword Reviews

“…here, as in other places, [Bumpus] also sends us on a sensory tour with her descriptions of the marvellous meals they enjoyed, of course all handmade, regional, and accompanied by superb wine. A true celebration of Italy. I believe that Carole Bumpus is such a successful author because of the love and passion she puts into her books, through her writing the landscapes, architecture, and gastronomy of Italy are brought wonderfully to life. Highly recommended!”—Susan Keefe, TheColumbiaReview.com

“…a delightful romp… This is an intimate and affectionate book (complete with a generous array of local, easy to follow recipes!) that takes us with this energetic couple to experience Italian life as it is lived as well as learn more of the rich history of Italy. ”—Mag Dimond, author of Bowing to Elephants; Tales of a Travel Junkie

“Abundant with Italian culinary traditions of ritual and region, this delightful travel memoir charms and entices. Bumpus is genuinely present in her stories, as if reliving the experiences in real time… Bumpus extends a gracious invitation to join her, with delectable, regional recipes—a shared feast that brings her journey home to us.”—Kate Farrell, author of Story Power: Secrets to Creating, Crafting, and Telling Memorable Stories

Book Review & Giveaway: Balloons for Tiger by Lori Orlinsky

Book Title:  Balloons for Tiger by Lori Orlinsky
Category:  Children’s Fiction (Ages 3-7),  38 pages
Genre:  Children’s Picture Book
Publisher:  Mascot Books
Release date:   May 4, 2021
Content Rating:  G for everyone.

Book Description:

How can children begin to heal after losing a pet? Balloons for Tiger takes an imaginative look at this tough topic as colorful balloons travel from the hands of children to their beloved cat who has passed on. This book lets children open up their hearts and imaginations for a magical journey to the farthest corners of the world, where they’ll meet skydivers, astronauts, superheroes, and everything in between. As they watch the balloons voyage to the other side of the rainbow bridge, they learn to positively process their grief. Balloons for Tiger is a great tool for any child who has experienced the loss of a pet- or any other loved one, too.


Order the Book:

Amazon ~ B&N ~ IndieBound
Mascot Books
add to goodreads

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

I love books like this one. It is easy to read and it has bright and colorful illustrations that will keep the attention of young children. At the same time, it contains an important lesson. Balloons for Tiger teaches children that it is normal to grieve the loss of a pet and that even though their pet is no longer with them, it is still okay.

I thought of a quote from Toni Morrison when I read the author’s information at the end of the book: “If there’s a book you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” That’s exactly what she did when she couldn’t find any books to help when they lost their cat, Tiger. How do you help young children understand death? Balloons for Tiger uses imagination and a positive way for children to deal with their grief.

There are even questions at the end for discussion and more importantly, coping strategies for parents to help their children through this difficult time.

About the Author

Lori Orlinsky is a multi-award-winning children’s book author who lives in Chicago. She was inspired to tell this story after her family experienced the loss of their beloved eighteen-year-old cat, Tiger. Unable to find books about pet loss to help her young kids cope with their grief, Lori wrote Balloons for Tiger. She hopes this book will help others, too.

connect with the author: website ~ instagram ~ facebook ~ goodreads

Giveaway

Win signed copy of Lori Orlinsky’s BALLOONS FOR TIGER) (USA only) (ends June 7)

Balloons for Tiger Giveaway

Follow the Tour

May 4 –Cover Lover Book Review  – book review / giveaway
May 4 – Welcome To MLMOpinion’s Reviews – book review
May 5 –Rockin’ Book Reviews – book review / guest post / giveaway
May 6 – A Mama’s Corner of the World – book review / giveaway
May 7 – Westveil Publishing – book review / guest post / giveaway
May 10 –The Pen and Muse Book Reviews – book review / giveaway
May 11 –Twirling Book Princess – book review
May 11 – Pawesome Wisdom – book spotlight / giveaway
May 12 – Pick a Good Book – book review / author interview / giveaway
May 13 – I’d Rather Be At The Beach – book review / giveaway
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Book Review & Giveaway: The Adventures of Molly & Ollie: Moving Day by Sally Beale

Book Title:  The Adventures of Mollie & Ollie: Moving Day by Sally Beale
Category:  Children’s Fiction (Ages 3-7),  38 pages
Genre:  Children’s Picture Book
Publisher:  Mascot Books
Release date:   March, 2021
Content Rating:  G for everyone.


Book Description:

Every child experiences change in their life. Moving can be difficult, but in this Mom’s Choice award-winning book, when eight-year-old Molly Day meets a new friend, a magical owl named Oliver Winston Howell III, her move to a new house in a new town becomes easier than she expected. Be on the lookout for Molly and Ollie’s next adventure!

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My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Poor Molly! Her family is moving and she’s not only leaving her home behind but her best friend as well. When she arrives at her new home, however, Ollie (Oliver Winston Howell III) makes the move much easier with magic and wise words.

I had to laugh when Ollie told his full name to Molly. It reminded me of Thurston Howell III from Gilligan’s Island every time it was said. Although this adventure starts kind of sad for Molly, she finds the move easier than she expected. This is a fun book to read and I can see many children being able to relate since so many families move these days. The illustrations are colorful and done very well.

I recommend Moving Day, the first book in The Adventures of Molly & Ollie, for children of all ages whether they’re moving or not.

About the Author

Photo by Adrienne Reich Photography

The Adventures of Molly & Ollie: Moving Day was inspired by Beale’s own experiences as a young child. Her father’s occupation required that her family move across the country every two years. Beale’s childhood was filled with adventures that captured her imagination in each new home. She continued her passion for adventure while raising her two daughters and working as a costume designer for local theaters. Now she is channeling her sense of fun and her youthful spirit into her children’s stories. Beale is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). The Adventures of Molly & Ollie: Moving Day, a Mom’s Choice Award winner, is the first book in the Molly & Ollie series.

connect with the author: website ~ instagram ~ goodreads

Giveaway

Enter to win a signed copy of Sally Beale’s THE ADVENTURES OF MOLLY & OLLIE: Moving Day!
(one winner/USA only)

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May 10 – Reading is My Passion – book review / author interview
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May 21 – The Adventures of a Travelers Wife – book review / guest post / giveaway
May 21 – I’m Into Books – book review / giveaway

Audiobook Review & Giveaway: Caroline & Mordecai the Gand by Jeff Gunhus

Book Title: Caroline & Mordecai the Gand by Jeff Gunhus
Category:  Middle-Grade Fiction (Ages 8-12), 186 pages
Genre: Fantasy, Literary
Publisher:  Seven Guns Press
Release date:  March 31, 2021

Content Rating: PG: The language is G. There is one scene with the main character punches a bully resulting in a bloody nose. The emotional treatment of grief and the death of a loved one can be somewhat intense.

Description

This novella was written by USA Today bestselling author Jeff Gunhus after he received a devastating diagnosis of state 3 cancer. The story is a message to his five children on how to deal with grief and a plea for them to grasp onto joy and love even in the darkest of times.

Caroline loses her spark. It takes a great adventure for her to find it again.

Caroline loses her father in a car accident for which she feels responsible. Consumed by grief, she has a difficult time readjusting to a world that has changed so dramatically for her. On the anniversary of her father’s death, a strange window opens in the middle of the small lake behind her house. She climbs up an old oak to peer inside, but falls out of the tree and discovers that the window also serves as a door into a different world.

Enter Mordecai the Gand, a mysterious traveler who befriends Caroline and promises to help her find a way back home since the window she fell through has disappeared. The two set out on a series of adventures that include visiting a tree village populated by a tribe known for eating travelers, running into a witch under a spell of her own making, hiding in a cave with a dragon encased in a wall of ice (prone to melting by campfire), all the while being pursued by a mysterious entity call the Creach which promises to devour Caroline and trap her in an eternity of despair.

As they navigate these adventures and this new world, Caroline slowly discovers that she is meant to help each of the characters she meets. As she battles internally whether to stay or return home to the sadness and grief waiting for her there, she must regain perspective and open her heart to the act of caring and to the joy of love itself. In the end, she must demonstrate great courage, loyalty, and caring as the plot unfolds, becoming the active hero of her own story.

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add to Goodreads

My Review

I chose to listen to this book after receiving a free audio copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

I have read all of the Jack Templar books by Jeff Gunhus and have always enjoyed his writing so I was looking forward to listening to this book. Just like the Jack Templar books, it is written for middle grade and/or young adult readers, but it’s a story that readers of all ages will like.

Caroline lost her father when she was 13 years old. They were very close and it was devastating, especially since she blamed herself for his death. When she ends up in another world and meets Mordecai the Gand, she goes on an emotional journey with him and learns some important lessons about loss, grief, and hope.

Caroline meets some quirky characters along the way. Mordecai is quirky enough but then there is the tribe that lives in the trees whose people like to eat travelers, the terrifying Creach, and a dragon that started out being frozen in ice…

The narrator, Sarah L. Colton, has a great voice for telling a story. Her timing and pace are also excellent. I hope to listen to more stories that she narrates.

If you’ve experience a recent loss, or even if you haven’t, Caroline and Mordecai the Gand is a book that is full of sadness and grief but is still an adventure that is fun at times and is full of hope. I am thankful that Jeff Gunhus decided to share this book that was originally meant as a private story for his children when he was diagnosed with stage 3 cancer.

“Readers of all ages who look for ethereal, haunting stories of recovery and courage will find Caroline & Mordecai the Gand may hold the trappings of a fantasy adventure; but inside there is so much more. Make the right decision, to read this!” – D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review

“Caroline’s story is profoundly sad, and yet hopeful, magical, and yet rooted in reality. There is magic, mystery, and daring adventure.”– BooksCoffee

About the Author

Jeff Gunhus is the USA TODAY bestselling author of thriller and horror novels for adults and the middle grade fantasy series, The Jack Templar Chronicles. The first book, Jack Templar Monster Hunter, was written in an effort to get his reluctant reader eleven-year-old son excited about reading. It worked and a new series was born. His books for adults have reached the Top 30 on Amazon, have been recognized as Foreword Reviews Book of the Year Finalists and reached the USA TODAY bestseller list.

Jeff wrote Caroline & Mordecai the Gand after receiving a devastating diagnosis of stage 3 cancer. The novella was meant as a private story for his five children on how to face grief by holding onto joy and love. He leads an active life in Maryland with his wife Nicole by trying to constantly keep up with their kids. In rare moments of quiet, he can be found in the back of Old Fox Books in Annapolis working on his next novel or on JeffGunhus.com.

connect with the author:  website  ~  twitter  ~  facebook instagram goodreads bookbub

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Apr 6 – Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting – book review / giveaway
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May 5 – Westveil Publishing – audiobook review / guest post / giveaway
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May 6 – Locks, Hooks and Books – book review / giveaway
May 7 – Reading is My Passion – book review
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May 10 – Bound 4 Escape – audiobook review / giveaway
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Book Review & Giveaway: Crash: How I Became a Reluctant Caregiver by Rachel Michelberg

Crash: How I Became a Reluctant Caregiver by Rachel Michelberg

Publisher:  She Writes Press, (April 27, 2021)
Category: Memoir, Divorce, Parenting, Moral Conflict, Caring for Disabled, Caregiver
ISBN: 978-1647420321
Available in Print and ebook, 224 pages

Description

Rachel likes to think of herself as a nice Jewish girl, dedicated to doing what’s honorable, just as her parents raised her to do. But when her husband, David, survives a plane crash and is left with severe brain damage, she faces a choice: will she dedicate her life to caring for a man she no longer loves, or walk away?

Their marriage had been rocky at the time of the accident, and though she wants to do the right thing, Rachel doesn’t know how she is supposed to care for two kids in addition to a now irrational, incontinent, and seizure-prone grown man. And how will she manage to see her lover? But then again, what kind of selfish monster would refuse to care for her disabled husband, no matter how unhappy her marriage had been? Rachel wants to believe that she can dedicate her life to David’s needs, but knows in her heart it is impossible.

Crash tackles a pervasive dilemma in our culture: the moral conflicts individuals face when caregiving for a disabled or cognitively impaired family member.

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Guest Review by Sage Nor

A heart wrenching look at the underappreciated caregivers in our lives.

Rachel Michelberg was a young mother of two when her husband, a pilot, was in a terrible accident. His plane crashed into a vineyard in California, and David Michelberg was left with severe brain damage as well as spinal damage. This kind of catastrophe would be enough to destroy almost anyone’s life, but Rachel had an added problem.

Before the crash, she and David’s marriage was already in trouble, and Rachel had begun seeing another man. Now, Rachel must care for a husband that she is not sure she feels anything for beyond duty. And, of course, caring for someone with such severe injuries is a full time job.

David is capable of speech and some memory, but he doesn’t remember his children and he is prone to fits of irrationality. Between caring for her children and health issues of her own, Rachel struggles to take care of a husband who has mentally regressed back to the state of a small child and take care of herself at the same time.

Michelberg’s writing was fantastic and she held nothing back from scrutiny. Reading this book felt like an intimate look at the life of someone suffering through a time that most of us hope we’ll never have to face and getting through it in a realistic way. Despite putting all of her flaws out for everyone in the world to see, Michelberg was so sympathetic and so easy to understand.

I can’t imagine how difficult it must be to deal with someone that you love going through something so terrible and irreversible. ‘Crash: How I Became a Reluctant Caregiver’ changed my mind and my opinions in a lot of ways, and it’s one memoir that I know I will be thinking about for a long time to come.

About the Author

Rachel Michelberg grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area and still enjoys living there with her husband, Richard, and their two dogs, Nala and Beenie. She earned her Bachelor of Music degree in vocal performance from San Jose State University and has performed leading roles in musicals and opera from Carmen to My Fair Lady as well as the part of the Mother Abbess (three times!) in The Sound of Music.

When Rachel isn’t working with one of her twenty voice and piano students, she loves gardening, hiking, and making her own bone broth. CRASH: How I Became a Reluctant Caregiver is her first book.

Website: https://www.rachelmauthor.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RachelMAuthor/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/RMichelberg
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rachelmichelbergauthor/

Giveaway

This giveaway is open to the U.S. only for the choice of print or eBook for each winner. It ends on May 18, 2021,midnight pacific time. Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.

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