Okay, so this is a post that took some time to create not so much in content (though that did as well), but in TITLE. I toyed with SO MANY OPTIONS, some of which I liked (Book-to-Book) and some of which I discarded before I could even record the name. In the end, I went with 'Book Kins' because it was cute, it was short, and in essence, each of the titles featured today reminded me of the next, and the next, and so on, until I was on a reading journey where everything seemed to relate to the other in some fashion. Sound good? Great! Feel free to create your own post with the title/theme...
(Release Date: 07/19/16)
(Release Date: 070/12/16)
The beauty of this series is held in both the story and drawings. The simple pencil renditions are detailed enough to capture the mood of the moment, but not so much that young readers just taking flight will be completely distracted from the tale. The story is interesting enough to pull even the most timid of readers along for the boat ride and with characters as spunky as our little Piper, easily coming back for more. I also enjoy the pinch of educational material inserted in the tale, such as the bosun's whistle - history and use - because it allows for further expanding of young minds while giving them an entry point to investigate the nautical aspects of the story further. Another win for Piper Green and her adorable (and smart!) "sea pony". Speaking of SEA, that brought to mind our next title...
Paddington Sets Sail
I CAN READ! series
Paddington and the Browns are off for a trip to the SEA shore! Having never been to the beach, Paddington packs everything, and I so mean EVERYTHING, a bear could possibly need for such an excursion. A float upon the waves, and a sandcastle competition later, and our little Paddington is pooped! He takes a few moments respite in his sandy creation...only when he is rudely awakened by an unexpected splash, he's not quite on the shore anymore. *-* Uh-oh...it seems the tide has come in and washed our little bear out to sea! Will Paddington make it back to the beach safe and sound? Will the Browns have to rescue him from the salty depths? Will I stop posing questions and let you and yours get to reading the book? Yes!
Paddington is a timeless character which makes his adventures one and the same. Though this trip through the big waters is much shorter than his original journey, it's adventure filled and ADORABLE nonetheless. If you haven't discovered the joys of this little blue-coat-red-hat-wearing bear, it's high tide...I mean time...you start. While we were swept out to SEA with this read, I was still focused by book's end on the BEAR, which led me to....
The Berenstain Bears:
School Time Blessings
Speaking of timeless characters, the Berenstain BEARS are definitely another occupant of that category. Mama, Papa, Brother, Sister, and Honey Bear are all here and getting ready for the first day of school. You'd think it'd be all fun and games; new supplies to shop for, clothes to pick out, and friends to meet up with again. Alas...the trepidation for that FIRST DAY is what's spoiling all their fun. Though Brother and Sister Bear know what to expect despite their own fears of a particular subject or two, Honey Bear is just starting her "academic career" and the jitters are seriously getting to her. With a little encouragement from Mama and Papa plus a prayer for guidance and strength from above, the siblings discover that everything will be alright in the end. They learn to lean on each others strengths to undermine their perceived weaknesses and to leave the bigger things to the Big Man upstairs.
I grew up with these BEARS in their non-secular based classics, and still find the faith-tinged series most enjoyable. Who couldn't use a reminder at any age that they are never truly alone with their struggles? Who doesn't need someone to lean on in times of need? Who couldn't use a source of strength when their own seems to be failing? These stories use everyday instances to relate to the kiddos while allowing the secular ideals to work their own magic, bringing the lessons of the Bible home for all ages.
So, you see fair readers, our first BOOK KINS has come to an end. Here's hoping you found some amazing new titles to add to your Summer Reading and beyond! My thanks to the publishers and publicists that work day in day out to help authors and illustrators get their stories in the hands of readers worldwide. Review copy thanks to the teams at HarperCollins, Penguin Random House, Schwartz & Wade, Zonderkidz, and Abrams Books for Young Readers. For more information on the titles covered here today, the authors, illustrators, or publishers, please feel free to click through the links provided above. Most of these titles are available now (except those noted otherwise), so be on the lookout for them on a bookstore shelf or virtual retailer of your choosing.
Until next time....happy reading!