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review 2018-02-22 02:01
The Rainbow Fish
The Rainbow Fish - Marcus Pfister,J. Alison James

AR: 3.3

Grade Level: PreK-3

Summary: Rainbow Fish, by Marcus Pfister, is all about the value of friends. It teaches children that you cannot always stand alone. Sometimes you need help. Sometimes you have to make sacrafices! Together is always better!

Idea: I absolutely love this book. I would most definitely use this book for character education. I would stress the importance of not being selfish and being open to making new friends. An activity that I would use for this would be to label "the rainbow" fish. I would do this activity with my younger students, such as Kindergarten. 

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review 2018-02-21 03:33
What's Your Name?
My Name Is Truth: The Life of Sojourner Truth - Ann Turner,James Ransome

AR: 4.4

Grade Level: 2nd-5th

Summary: My Name Is Truth describes the life of a slave, Sojourner Truth. It goes into detail of her life as a slave, then dwells into how she received her name Sojourner Truth. 

Idea: I absolutely love this book! It's an excellent book to help introduce slavery to students. It encourages determination, what we want all of our students to have. I will most definitely be using this book to cover a unit on slavery during social studies. 

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review 2018-02-21 03:09
CLAWS FOR CONCERN
Claws for Concern (Cat in the Stacks Mystery) - Miranda James

Murder in a cozy mystery doesn’t always happen on page four. Author Miranda James offers readers a cold case twenty years old. This made for an even more thrilling case to try and solve for series lead, Charlie Harris, and for readers!

 

With CLAWS FOR CONCERN, there’s not much I can say other than what I say each time I read a book in the Cat in the Stacks mysteries. Author James has created an excellent plot that draws the reader swiftly into the story. With the same consistent style, the author’s writing held me spell bound as I joined Charlie and Diesel in their investigation of the decades old case.

 

A fun addition to the series for readers is the presence of Charlie’s new grandson, and his and Diesel’s interaction with the baby. Charlie is such a proud Grandfather, I could feel the love oozing of the pages. And Diesel’s fascination with the baby brought a smile to my face.

 

A great addition to this series, CLAWS FOR CONCERN is written proof of why readers continuously return to the Cat in the Stacks Mysteries.

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url 2018-02-20 20:30
48 new releases in book series out today
Outpost - W. Michael Gear
Battle Hymn - William C. Dietz
Claws for Concern (Cat in the Stacks Mystery) - Miranda James
Ink, Iron, and Glass - Gwendolyn Clare,Mike Heath
Death of an Honest Man (A Hamish Macbeth Mystery) - M. C. Beaton
Winter Igniting (Scorpius Syndrome) (Volume 5) - Rebecca Zanetti
Source: www.fictfact.com/BookReleaseCalendar
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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-02-20 00:34
The Magic Cottage by James Herbert (2017 Review)
The Magic Cottage - James Herbert

The Magic Cottage by James Herbert
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Top Read 2017 * * * * *

Tired of the hustle and bustle of the city of London, young couple Mike and Midge are determined to find a home that offers them a brighter - and quieter - future. Much to their delight, that perfect home comes in the form of Gramarye; a breathtaking, isolated cottage that appears too good to be true. Eager to move right in and settle down, they soon experience the enchanting wonders Gramarye has to offer, along with the sinister ugliness that lurks just beneath its surface.

(WARNING: this review contains spoilers.)

I genuinely didn't expect to discover such a hidden gem when I selected a book at random from my shelf. Having never picked up a Herbert novel before, I was soon stunned by the sheer beauty of the story, which included the subtle, yet increasingly unnerving horror element that primarily lingered in the background. I could be considered a nick-picky reader, or downright pessimistic; someone who doesn't dish out top ratings all too often because even the tiniest things can impact my enjoyment, so it's a surprise and a special occasion when I find something that ticks all the right boxes. And tick all the boxes it did, and then some. This one will stay with me for several reasons, the foremost being quite personal. I know very well the longing for the perfect home - somewhere that brings happiness and contentment. Gramarye in itself sounded like my dream cottage; it simply fascinated me with its extraordinarily close ties to nature, and the magic that enveloped its walls.

I quickly became attached to Mike and Midge, and rooted for their relationship throughout the entirety of the book. Both had their flaws; Mike could be selfish, whilst Midge infuriatingly stubborn, but I found them to be more relatable due to these faults. When they were on the verge of separation, I actually felt something; a sort of dread that perhaps a happy ending wasn't in store. That's the thing about this genre; happily-ever-afters aren't a certainty, there's just so much potential, and I couldn't stop my mind from racing. Of course, there were the side characters, and each and every one had their part to play. Val, in particular stood out, especially when she displayed such bravery and loyalty to her friends in the end.

The plot itself wasn't non-stop scares or gore, but rather a slow progression of laying down the foundations, and setting the tone, before the explosive finale. I can't say this way of storytelling works for everyone, but I found myself completely immersed, and never did I believe it to be stale. Herbert truly struck me as a writer that favoured the development of his characters, and of making the reader truly care for what's happening. I daresay it's so much better than cheap thrills that ultimately mean very little.

I really do need to mention the descriptive writing, and how it truly conveyed what Herbert wanted it to. There's a particular scene that takes place in the loft of Gramarye, involving Mike and a large number of bats. Don't get me wrong, I adore bats and have no fear of them, but I don't think I've ever been as disturbed when reading before - it almost made me feel a bit sick. Such in-depth detail that worked together extremely well, resulting in the magical moments positively feeling magical, and the eerie moments giving a clear sense of unease. This is what writing's really about.

Lastly, I should probably include that I actually cried at a certain point in this book. I'm usually not such an emotional reader, where I shed tears often, but I really loved that squirrel.

I'll never forget Rumbo.

Notable Scene:

The pink, hunched thing grew in size, frail shape glistening in the light of the torch. The tiny body oozed out, smoothly and wetly, taking form - an unsightly form - discharged from the womb like an oval blob of pink topping squeezed from an icing bag, to plop onto the mother bat's stomach, caught there and suspended by its life-chord. The mother immediately wrapped wings and pouched tail around the newborn, its head striving upwards and tongue flickering out to cleanse the sticky flesh body.

© Red Lace 2017

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Source: redlace.reviews/2018/02/20/the-magic-cottage-by-james-herbert-2017-review
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