Monday, July 14, 2014

From Tragedy to Triumph: The Story of John Tartaglio by John Tartaglio and Andrew Chapin

Perseverance. This is a great adjective to describe John Tartaglio. When John was seventeen he developed a rare bacterial infection which led to the loss of both of his legs and his left bicep. He didn't let that stop him. Despite the negativity of his doctors, he was determined to walk across the stage at his graduation.

He continued making goals -- cycling, swimming, running. If a person with legs could do it then he was determined to find a way to do it as well. his attitude throughout all of this is completely inspirational. I felt privileged to read about something that could be so personal.

This story was amazing. I was pulled into John's life and found myself crying tears of joy when he accomplished a goal, laughing at his jokes, and cheering him on. My children and husband got to hear about the story. My six year old daughter was especially excited about it.

I recommend this book. There was some strong language in it but it didn't occur often. I give this book 4 stars. ****

To learn more about this author go here.

Here are some videos. If you search his name on youtube, you'll find quite a few more.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Winnie's Review: Patches & Buttons by Jennifer Link

Summary: Buttons is a bunny who is easy to scare. Patches is a very noisy dog and scares Buttons all the time. How will these two animals learn to live together?
My Opinion: I think this book is good because it teaches an important lesson about friendship. The pictures were fun, too. My favorite part was when buttons got scared by the vacuum cleaner. I rate this book 5 stars.
My siblings Opinion: I read this book to my younger siblings. They said “ I think the animals will learn to love each other." and  "I like this book because I had never before seen a dog and bunny get along." and "My favorite part was when the bunny hid behind the towels." I think they really liked the book so thank you, Jennifer Link for letting us enjoy this book!

Author: To learn more about the author, click here

Disclaimer: This was a complimentary copy of the book given to me in exchange for an honest review.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Winnie's Reviews: The Secret at Haney Field by R.M. Clark

Can you see the shadow players? April O’ day gets hired as a bat retriever and comes to like her job. She knows everything about baseball from researching and reading. Mr. Haney owns the stadium and sets up a meeting to see April. He brings April into the stadium and sits her down and makes her look into the field. He asks her what she sees. People shaped objects are running around the bases. They're shadow players. Why are they here? What do they want?

Opinion: I like this book because it’s mysterious. Ghosts are used in a lot of books. Shadow players are one of a kind. I love the plot and how it smoothly runs. It has all the right details. Thanks for letting me read this fantastic book! FIVE stars!
Author: To learn more about the author visit this website:

Disclaimer: This was a complimentary copy of the book given to me in exchange for an honest review.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Winnie's Reviews: A Bad Case of Stripes

The bad case of stripes
Do you like lima beans? It’s the first day of school and Camila wants to look perfect.  She looks into the mirror and sees a shocking thing that can change her life forever!

I love this book because it teaches an important lesson about being yourself. My younger siblings love it, too. I recommend it to 4-8 year olds or anyone who is scared to be themselves. I rate this book 5 stars!

If you would like to learn more about the author go to this website:

This is Renee: Side note - this is also a very good book for older kids to work on sequencing or cause and effect.  

Monday, June 9, 2014

Winnie's Reviews: Wages Creek by Jeffrey Hickey

Summary: Quack! I read a book called Wages Creek by an amazing author, Jeffrey Hickey. Wages creek is a beautiful place, but you can’t enjoy it when you’re sick. In this book Jeffrey Hickey is a character that goes on an adventure in his mind. This adventure includes ducks, horseshoes, and an unusual event!

Opinion: I love this book! The illustrations are well drawn and the story is thought through. It’s got all the right parts. I love how the author used himself as a character. I rate this book 5 star!

To learn more about this author, click HERE.

Renee: So, Winnie really liked this one. I gave her the book and she had it read before she even made it home. She was also given an audio book by the author. She listened to it and shared it with her younger siblings. They all enjoyed both the actual book and the audio book. 

Disclaimer: This was a complimentary copy of the book given to me in exchange for an honest review.

You can purchase your own copy here

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Squish: Super Amoeba

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Series: Squish (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers (May 10, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375843892
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375843891
Author: Jennifer  and Matt Holm

This is a story about one celled organisms living their life. Elementary school is hard for everyone but especially if you're an amoeba named Squish who has bullies to deal with and Principal Planaria. Not to mention getting along with friends and a dad who secretly listens to heavy metal. Do you think Squish can save his friends and the world from the evils in the hallway or school? Read the book to find out. :)

I have, what we could call, a reluctant reader. This, however, was the first chapter book I got him to read. Granted, it's written as a comic book but I really didn't care as long as it got this young reader to read words. He loved this book. He even picked up the sequel the next time he was at the library.

AR: Grade level 2.2
Lexile: GN230L

This would be a fun book to have in the classroom, especially for science when covering one celled organisms. Unfortunately, most 2nd graders don't learn about one celled organisms for a while but it would be a great way to introduce them to the topic. It really is mostly just for fun.

RATING: **** Four Stars

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Collin's Corner: The Fastest Pet on Earth by J.E. Bright

This is about two enemies... a cheetah and a kangaroo. The kangaroo and Wonder Woman are friends. The Cheetah and Cheetah Girl are friends. The Kangaroo and Wonder Woman are good and the Cheetah and Cheetah Girl are bad. It is a little funny. They are fighting over a golden turtle. The golden turtle gives anyone powers. If you think the golden turtle is a toy, you are wrong; it is a real animal. If you want to know the rest of this story, then read the book.

It was really fun reading. In some parts it was funny and in other parts it was a little intense. If I could give it more than 5 stars, I would give it 10. I recommend everyone read this book.

I have already asked my mom to get me the whole series.

Reading Levels:
AR: 3.4
Lexile: 560L

About Collin: It's been a while since he reviewed a book on here so I thought I'd remind you. He is 8 years old and just completed 2nd grade. He is also my son. ;) And, apparently, he's a huge fan of DC Super-Pets book series now. haha! This is also the first time his book review was done completely by him. I added the reading levels and this but he did the rest. In the past, I just added his opinion to the end. This one is all him. :)