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review 2020-06-12 03:49
Alamo All Stars
Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales: Alamo All-Stars - Nathan Hale

Audience: Upper Elementary

Format: Physical Book/Library Copy

 

 

Kids at my school love these books, so I thought I should give the series a try. I learned some things about the Alamo that I didn't know before. The images are well-done and there is a great deal of humor infused into the stories. I'm sure the kids enjoy the bloody parts as well, but at least it isn't gory. I'm happy to have this series in my library and will encourage students to read all of them.

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review 2020-05-15 17:51
Monster High/Ever After High: The Legend... Monster High/Ever After High: The Legend of Shadow High - Shannon Hale,Dean Hale
For more reviews, check out my blog: Craft-Cycle

I absolutely love the Ever After High series. The books are always gorgeous with interesting plays on fractured fairy tales. So, of course, I was beyond thrilled to see a mashup of Every After High and Monster High. While I haven't read any of the Monster High books yet (on the TBR list, I promise), I do enjoy the movies.

To start out, I actually wasn't a huge fan of this. Brooke's narration was a little grating, to be honest. Her interjections were a bit irritating and noting that a particular sentence was terribly constructed in no way makes the sentence any better. It just adds some awkwardness. I love the use of narrators as characters, but Brooke mostly just annoyed me at the beginning.

However, as the story got going, I eased in to the narration and got swept up in the plot. It was fascinating to see all of the characters come together in this entirely new setting. I loved the combining of worlds, both those familiar and those previously unexplored. It was entertaining in a way very different from the previous books.

Then things start really getting weird and I loved all of the puns and creative techniques used to portray the oddity. The use of different fonts, the arguments between narrators, and the surprise input from the reader were all so interesting and unique. It really made for a great reading experience.

As with the other books, the physical book is absolutely gorgeous, complete with Mapalogue graphics that are stunning.

Despite the rocky start, I ended up loving this book so much. It was wonderful to read and go along with the crazy ride that this mashup provides. A hexcellent book filled with puns, suspense, adventure, and surprises. Great to dive into and explore.
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review 2020-03-19 03:43
Best Friends
Best Friends - Shannon Hale

Are your actions and feeling based on how you actually feel or are they based upon how you’re supposed to feel?  It was all so confusing and to Shannon, it seemed that the rules keep changing. 

 

It’s their last year in elementary school and Shannon thought this year would be great yet it’s not starting out that way. She thought that she fit in with her girlfriends but now, she just doesn’t.  Why is it that there’s a difference between what Shannon thinks and what her girlfriends think now? How had they become so different? Shannon starts to second guess everything about herself and it’s painful to see how much she’s working at this. I had to wonder why Shannon was the only one who was excluded in this bunch of girls and why?  The girls, I thought, were mean sometimes to Shannon, yet she didn’t want to be excluded from this group so she worked harder to try to fit in.

 

I didn’t read the first book in this series but that didn’t stop me from enjoying this graphic novel. I could totally understand how Shannon felt in this book although, I’m not the targeted audience.  I believe many individuals understand this frustration.  It’s only when you start feeling comfortable and accept who you are, do you start doing your own thing and you don’t worry so much about fitting in. I’ve even met older women who still worry about what others think too much. 

 

Shannon tries to be cool like her friends, she tries to figure out the correct way to act and feel yet, just when she thinks she has it figured out, the rules change!  One minute it’s one way, another minute it’s another way – Shannon just can’t keep up!

It’s a terrific graphic novel with wonderful, colorful text boxes. The flow of the story was easy to follow also.  This graphic novel is definitely one that’s worth reading.   

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review 2020-02-16 21:38
THE BIG NAP by Bruce Hale
The Big Nap: A Chet Gecko Mystery - Bruce Hale
Zombies seem to be taking over the school and Chet must find out who is responsible.
 
This is one where knowing 1940's film noir and jazz works best.  Chet's puns are a hoot!  What pictures they put in my mind.  I love his sidekicks--Natalie and Waldo.  All I can say is thank heavens for them both.  Chet has to stop thinking he can do it alone.  Also this tale gives a timely warning all (adults and kids) should heed.  Can't wait to read the next one.
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review 2020-02-11 01:45
FAREWELL, MY LUNCHBAG by Bruce Hale
Farewell, My Lunchbag: A Chet Gecko Mystery - Bruce Hale
Chester the Gecko is hired by the head lunch lady to discover who is stealing food from the cafeteria but he ends up the main suspect.  He knows he's been framed but how to prove it?
 
I love this series.  I love the puns.  Since he is a 4th grader, it sounds like Chester is a 1940's film noir PI narrator.  He is so funny as are the pictures that pop into my mind when he says his lines.  So much fun!
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