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Book Review: My Cat Looks Like My Dad

I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect with a book called “My Cat Looks Like My Dad” but the Dad kind of reminded me of my Dad (though we have never had a cat) so I had to give it a go.  In addition to this author’s Dad looking like their cat and vice versa, they also seem to have a lot of other things in common – like what they like to eat and drink and how they spend their day!  While the story may be a bit on the stranger side, the illustrations were a lot of fun to look at.  They looked like they may have been made of paper piecing and some really, really cool patterned paper at that. (The Dad’s outfits are really retro and fun!)  I really ended up enjoying this book a lot.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated.  This book will be published April 15 from Owlkids Books.

About the Book

New from the creator of Wallpaper and Skunk on a String comes a witty and uplifting picture book that will speak to families of all varieties about how family really is what you make it.

Minimal text paired with bright paper-collage illustrations create comparisons on each spread in which the narrator talks about their family—especially the striking similarities between Dad and the cat. Both have orange hair, love milk, start their days with stretches, appreciate a good nap, and are brave (some of the time). The narrator is more like Mom, with wild hair, blue eyes, and a love of dancing.

A surprising twist at the end reveals the narrator’s unexpected identity, also hinted at with clues in the art throughout the book. Warmth and whimsy in the illustrations add a playful balance to the story’s deeper message about the love that makes a family a unit, no matter how unusual it may look from the outside.

Book Review: Backpack Explorer: Beach Walk

Backpack Explorer: Beach Walk is all about taking a beach adventure! It starts out with suggesting things you should bring in your backpack – like this book and something to write with, some toys, sunscreen, etc.  The back of the book has 12 stickers that look like patches so when you find something at the beach that matches one of the “I See It!” stickers, you can stick it in the book!  There are tips for going to the beach and some fun games you can play at the beach.  As someone who grew up near the beach, I always kind of took it for granted and never looked for any of these fun items. Maybe I’ll have to go on an adventure this summer and make up for lost time!

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. This book will be released April 16 from Storey Publishing.

About the Book

NPH at RJ Julia

Wednesday April 3, Neil Patrick Harris did an event with RJ Julia to talk about his book series, The Magic Misfits.  Tickets went on sale while I was flying from Hartford to Dallas for the first leg of my trip to Australia – so I bought wifi when I got on the plane, took a nap (6am flight – naps are needed) and set my alarm for 9:50am as tickets were set to go on sale “around 10am”.  I had everything on alert to get notified when the link went up – only to have it not work initially.  As we began making our descent into Dallas, I finally snagged a ticket.  I had no idea how quickly it would sell out (but I knew it would sell out) so desperate times called for desperate measures.  Turns out I did have time to wait and could have snagged it during my layover – but if I didn’t try to buy it from the sky I am sure it would have ended up sold out on me.

Wednesday finally came and we got there about an hour before doors to find maybe 10 people in line in front of us?  As time to enter neared, staff from the bookstore said he was running “Very, very, very late” and we could not be let inside until he arrived as we were supposed to pick up our signed books as we entered.  As these are kids books, a lot of children were present and were definitely getting restless as time went on.  We finally ended up let inside, where we waited for the books NPH was off signing somewhere to be delivered in groups.  We snagged seats in the 3rd row center and had a great view.

Around 7:30 the event started.  NPH walked out and put his phone on the table next to him, only for it to fall off.  He then realized the table had a curve to the end of it and did it a few more times as it was amusing him.  He talked about his love for magic, how the books originally were going to be picture books but he ended up writing them for a bit older kids instead, how some of the characters are based on people he knows and he was just overall very amusing and knowledgeable and a lot of fun to listen to.  Then they opened the floor up for questions – but the questions all came from the kids and I thought that they were GREAT questions I never would have thought of on my own.  “Who is your favorite character and what did they do that made them your favorite?”  “How did you name the characters?”  I am pretty sure if NPH had all the time in the world, he would have stayed there all night answering these kids questions and he just seemed so impressed that they were reading and raising their hands and asking.  (He did tell a story about how his kids don’t like to raise their hands in class and he told them that even if they don’t know the answer to raise their hang because that is how you learn.)

After the talk they picked 5 raffle tickets to get their books personalized by NPH.  Unfortunately we weren’t chosen! But it was a fun night all the same and I am looking forward to finding the time to read the books! (#3 comes out in September!)

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Book Review: Kat Makes

This is a great book for a beginning reading that goes over everything that Kat Makes!  It is a very short book but has a lot of great content. Easy read. Great for new readers.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated.

About the book

Kat Can Reader: Kat Makes 

Kat is a busy girl. In this very simple 8-page reader, short sentences are paired with fun illustrations to get kids reading about Kat and all of the things she likes to make.
Sample Text:
Kat makes forts. Kat makes pizza.
This book is part of the Kat Can series from Brenda Ponnay Kat Can Readers are Guided Reading Level A, are very short and are suitable for kids just learning to read.

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Book Review: Kahlo’s Koalas

Kahlo’s Koalas is a 1,2,3 count with me book.  Each number is represented by a different artist and a different animal done in the style or likeness of that artist.  It counts from 1-10 and has really great illustrations in the style of some very famous artists.  At the end of the book it features each artist and says how each artist would have painted the animals if they had the chance to.  Really fun to look at!

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.  This book will be released on April 9th from Andrews McMeel Publishing.

About the Book

From Henri Matisse’s monkeys and Jackson Pollock’s poodles to Roy Lichtenstein’s llamas and Wassily Kandinsky’s kangaroos, this beautiful 1-10 counting book provides an imaginative learning experience that will delight adults and children alike.

Introduce your little one to some of the world’s best artists while teaching them their numbers 1 to 10. With illustrator Grace Helmer’s quirky renderings of animals in the style of world-famous artists, Kahlo’s Koalas extends the basic counting concept in a simple, one number, one image per spread format that introduces the smallest children to their first concept of numbers, animals and art appreciation.

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Book Review: #Single

As someone who is currently attempting online dating and failing miserably, I had to see that I was not alone. This book is made up of a bunch of bizarre and funny responses from guys who matched on Tinder.  Unfortunately the blog that this book is based from no longer seems to exist which is a shame because I am sure that it would have brought me lots of laughs because if there is one thing that online dating has taught me it is that GUYS ARE WEIRD. So, so, so weird. (And a lot don’t check their typos and end up asking you lots of things about their… duck.)  In fact I may just end up writing my own book (or at least a blog) about my adventures in not-dating.  (Just have to find the free time between this blog (which im failing at updating, im aware), working, traveling, and grad school…)

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated. This book was published in November 2018.

About the book

This book is a must read if you match any of the following criteria: You are currently online dating. You have online dated. You will online date in your future. You are a smug couple. You worry your child is a spinster/bachelor for life. You like to laugh. You are a Jewish mother. You like to breathe and live and stuff. Is it a perfect match? Swipe right (okay, click) and add it to your cart.  #single is based on the popular blog TinderTuesday.com with 20,000 weekly visitors.

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Book Review: K: A History of Baseball in Ten Pitches

I like reading books about baseball, but there really isn’t too much about the game itself that end up being new or interesting.  However, this book took something I already know something about and expanded on it in a way that was new and exciting.  Each chapter is about a different type of pitch that can be done in the game of baseball.  Throughout each chapter, the author talks to some of the pitchers who excelled at and were known for that pitch as well as some of the hitters who faced them.  This was really interesting and the different types of pitches and what you can do with them is not something I usually think or read about, so I liked that this book gave me some more insight.  The author also did his homework and it was really great to see how many pitchers and hitters he was able to include in each chapter.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.  This book is scheduled to be released on April 2, 2019 from Doubleday Books.

About the Book

From the New York Times baseball columnist, an enchanting, enthralling history of the national pastime as told through the craft of pitching, based on years of archival research and interviews with more than three hundred people from Hall of Famers to the stars of today

The baseball is an amazing plaything. We can grip it and hold it so many different ways, and even the slightest calibration can turn an ordinary pitch into a weapon to thwart the greatest hitters in the world. Each pitch has its own history, evolving through the decades as the masters pass it down to the next generation. From the earliest days of the game, when Candy Cummings dreamed up the curveball while flinging clamshells on a Brooklyn beach, pitchers have never stopped innovating.

In K: A History of Baseball in Ten Pitches, Tyler Kepner traces the colorful stories and fascinating folklore behind the ten major pitches. Each chapter highlights a different pitch, from the blazing fastball to the fluttering knuckleball to the slippery spitball. Infusing every page with infectious passion for the game, Kepner brings readers inside the minds of combatants sixty feet, six inches apart.

Filled with priceless insights from many of the best pitchers in baseball history–from Bob Gibson, Steve Carlton, and Nolan Ryan to Greg Maddux, Mariano Rivera, and Clayton Kershaw–K will be the definitive book on pitching and join such works as The Glory of Their Times and Moneyball as a classic of the genre.

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Book Review: Oh No

Oh No is a collection of comics about being a disappointment or being disappointed.  Every panel ends in the character saying “Oh no” after something happens – or doesn’t happen, as it were.  It made me laugh many times, and the illustrations are just perfect for the subject matter I think. And I could relate to a lot of the comics as well.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated. This book will be released April 2 from Andrew McMeel Publishing.

About the Book

A humorous and poignant comic collection about disappointments big and small based on the popular webcomic, Webcomic Name.

Alex Norris’ viral webcomic Webcomic Name, has captured the internet’s heart. The disappointed blob and its resigned “oh no” has become a recognizable slogan, tapping into the current internet zeitgeist of self-conscious pessimism to hilarious and heartbreaking effect.

Now in this alternately funny and gloomy collection, oh no brings together all the series’ greatest hits as well as dozens of never-before-seen comics. With exciting material for established fans and newcomers alike, oh no will have something for everyone. Because, after all, we are all the disappointed blob; the disappointed blob is us.

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Book Review: We’re Not Sixteen Anymore

We’re Not Sixteen anymore is a book about what happens when a 60ish widow starts using dating apps/sites to try and start dating again.  I was curious to see if there are the same problems with trying to date at 60 as trying to date in your mid-30s.  Becky certainly ended up going on a lot more dates than I have, but a lot of the struggles and problems she had with the guys were the same.  We actually each had an incident at the Cheesecake Factory – though I will say that hers turned out a lot better than mine. (She ended up with her guy – mine walked away at the sight of me never to be heard from again.)

There are also some funny pieces in the book because Becky is 60ish and computer illiterate which puts her in some interesting situations that made me laugh.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated. This book was published in June 2016.

About the Book

This book published in 2016 but its popularity continues and this time of year seems to bring out the online dating ads more than ever.

You’ve seen those ads on television, in newspapers, and (naturally) on computer popups. The models are cute, handsome, young, or at least looking good for their age. But what REALLY happens when a computer semi-illiterate 60ish widow is prodded into this very 21st century form of dating—when the last time she dated was when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first men to walk on the moon? Getting back into dating makes her feel young. Actual dating makes her realize she is NOT sixteen anymore.  What started out as entries on her Facebook page have expanded into detailed accounts of dating foibles and feats. Anyone who has embraced the concept of online dating, no matter at what age, will find her adventures laugh-out-loud funny and charming.

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Book Review: Know Yourself

Know Yourself is a book of questions.  Each page poses a question for yourself – like what is your favorite room in the house? What do you think about before you go to sleep?  I tried to see which questions I was able to come up with answer for right away, which one I had to think about, and which answer I wasn’t very happy with to try and figure out more about myself and maybe what bad habits I have and should attempt to change.  (And I probably should have kept track of how many answers had something to do with Hanson.  Geez. LOL)

I did find I got stuck for a long time on “What were the three best things that happened today?” and maybe I should start one of those journals writing 1 good thing that happened each day to try and focus more on the positive and what I did do than the negative or what I still have to do.

I really enjoyed this book and how it made me think about things about myself.

“Life is not about finding the right answers; it’s about asking the right questions” – Unknown

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated.  This book will be released April 2, 2019 from Workman Publishing Company.

About the Book

Incisive questions can inspire self-reflection, spark ideas, and, best of all, reveal surprising truths. From Flow, the champions of meditating on life’s simple pleasures, here’s a book of 165 creative questions, some sweet, some silly, some unexpectedly provocative, that will open the mind to deeper self-knowledge. There are no “right” answers—the point is simply to stay curious and stay open to learning about oneself or a friend, partner, or roommate.

There are questions to prompt memories: How many homes have you lived in? To fuel a fantasy life: Which historical event do you wish you could have seen with your own eyes? To tap into your sense of adventure: What’s the wildest thing you’ve ever done? To remind you to live in the present: What were the three best things that happened today? To celebrate your strength: When have you stood up for yourself?

A signature Flow book in its mindful theme and charming, colorful aesthetic with vibrant patterns and hand-lettering, Know Yourself is a pleasure to browse through and share.

 

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