Archive for book reviews

Parade Magazine and Velvet Giggles feature Santa’s Zany Wacky in Holiday Gift Guides 2014

Original Article on Books for Kids from Parade: Read Now

Video Review on Christmas Gift Ideas: Watch Now

We are very proud to be listed in Parade Magazine’s Holiday Gift Guide -Books for Kids this year.  There are always so many wonderful titles to look over.  It is such a passion of mine that we keep reading out loud to kids, so to be included in an article in which the author is looking forward to reading our book snuggled up with her niece this holiday season makes me proud!  I certainly think that Santa’s (Zany, Wacky, Just Not Right!) Night Before Christmas is a book worthy of an annual holiday tradition.

And the video gift guide by Velvet Giggles is a delight.  Again, we are very proud to be included.  If you’ve never seen a review by Renae, you are in for a treat.  She has some great ideas and has a way of making me want all of them!  Enjoy!

Oh- and in case you missed it, we are now available in Kindle format as well as a great interactive app.  For more on the interactive version go to Interactive Touch Books.  You can click on Santa turn his suit from purple to red, hear jets roar, sleighbells ring, snowmen turn upside down and so much more!

Parade Magazine and Velvet Giggles holiday reviews


2nd award for Santa’s (Zany Wacky Just Not Right!) Night Before Christmas announced today

Check out Santa's purple suit and funny elves in our book! Finalist USA Book Awards Children's Picture Book -

USA Best Book Awards! Another award for Santa’s Zany Wacky Just Not Right Night Before Christmas………..just announced today. Award-Winning Finalist in the “Children’s Picture Book: Hardcover Fiction” category of the 2014 USA Best Book Awards.

 Celebrate with us!!  Get your copies now………free shipping!

In case you were wondering what the first award was, it was the Gold Medal in the Holiday category for Moonbeam Children’s book awards last month.

Gold Medal Winner Holiday Category- "Santa's Zany Wacky Just Not Right Night Before Christmas

Using Books Like Santa’s Zany Wacky to Expand Our Imagination and Thinking

The following article regarding using children’s books to promote imagination and thinking was posted at

Books. Many of us love them. We love the feel of snuggling up and turning the page to see what awaits on the very next page. They are like an adventure unraveling right between our fingertips, sometimes telling us a magical story. Sometimes teaching us about something we might long to know. But what we don’t realize is how important they are to helping our minds think and grow, so that we are more productive in our world.

Like so many I grew up reading books, starting with picture books when I was very small. I remember memorizing the stories so that I could “read” them to my parents. Sometimes I read little board books. Sometimes my mom would read long stories from big story books. Other times I just read along with the magical “ding” as the record played along. Whatever the way, for most of us, reading books as a child was the beginning for our love of books and to our path of thinking outside of the box.

Is reading books when we are young just about learning to read? They lead to us sparking our imaginations. They lead us to think even in picture format which helps us think in much bigger thoughts than the specific ramblings of just words on a page. Often what we read on the pages is playing out in our mind. As we see the illustrations in a picture book, our minds begin spinning out its own little movie. When we read words on a page, with or without pictures, our minds begin picturing what it is we are reading. That picturing is what ultimately leads to more creativity. When we imagine things we begin thinking bigger. We aren’t static. And thinking bigger ultimately makes us into better people because we can brainstorm and think in ways beyond what is concrete and in front of us.

Santa’s (Zany, Wacky, Just Not Right!) Night Before Christmas was written because of thinking bigger. It was sparked by an innocent conversation with my daughter. She (who has been an avid reader her entire life) asked an innocent question about why Santa’s suit was red? I didn’t really have an answer, but that inquiry made me wonder. Why is it red? What would Christmas look like today if it weren’t? Would changing that one thing change all of Christmas as we know it? My mind began imagining all of the things that might change. And my hope is, as kids read this book today, they ask themselves those same questions. What might change? What might change in their house at Christmas time if one thing were different? What if Santa’s suit stayed the same, but the date changed? I hope they are picturing striped reindeer and polka dotted snowmen. I hope they are imagining the most whimsical Christmas ever, because those thoughts are what will make their minds expand. There can be so many questions and answers that come from just one question. And reading books can and will help expand those ideas by teaching our minds how to think beyond what is on the page.

We operate in a global world. We must learn to think and look at things differently than we’ve always done. Learning to read and imagine stories as we read helps us to do that. Even reading a how-to book with a mind that has learned to imagine can help us improve upon the process we are learning about. Perhaps we follow the basic how to, but we then can improve upon it. When we learn to expand our minds, we aren’t limited to seeing what is, but rather we are able to create beyond that with our minds. It makes us better thinkers, storytellers, writers, and more. It makes us active in a world that is constantly changing. It makes us creative. So do yourself a favor. Go read a book. And let your mind wander. Better yet, read a book to a child, and teach them how to imagine and let their mind wander too.


As posted at

Halloween Box Stretch: The Very Hungry Caterpillar

Halloween box at The Very Hungry CaterpilarIt hasn’t been super easy to find new Halloween books I love.  But in the interest of creepy crawlies, this might be a stretch, but I love the Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle .  I think it is a great story that many kids love as they are amazed that the caterpillar turned into that huge colorful butterfly! So though this isn’t about a creepy bug, it is about a bug and it can be thought of at Halloween.  Of course it can be thought of all year long for so many things like life, science, counting, changes, and so much more.  If you haven’t picked this one up in awhile, Enjoy.  If you have never seen it, well I highly recommend you get this one out. (Eric Carle is a long time favorite!!)  It is definitely a fun one to read aloud.  I love the colors and illustrations too.

Halloween Box: Room on the Broom

Getting people back into the habit of reading out loud to kids is a passion of mine.  I really think it has sometimes become a lost art.  As kids get older they seem to have less and less interest in doing so.  But it is our job as parents, teachers, librarians, grandparents, and community members to help foster that love of reading.  I like the idea of starting a box of books maybe for each season.  Then you can put them away and pull them out again next year and they seem new again.  So I’m going to try to start with Halloween recommendations for the box since it seems to be coming up rather rapidly.  My plan is to include books by season that I think will make good read alouds.

The first book I would like to add to my box is Room on the Broom  by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler  .  It is a great book……….with a woosh and they were off!  It has been around awhile, but many might have seen the beautiful animation done with the story at the Oscar Animated Shorts last year.  I think most kids and adults will enjoy this story. It is a great addition for my Halloween box!  Enjoy!

Spread the word when you find a great book!  Write about it, Pin about it, tell your friends about it!

Spread the word when you find a great book! Write about it, Pin about it, tell your friends about it!

There is nothing better than a good book.  Except maybe a good review about a good book. Or maybe a good review about a good Christmas book. And it is beginning to look a lot like Christmas.  As I said earlier there are snowflakes here already today. (In Denver- hmmm, maybe it means a great ski season ahead!)  In any case, the bloggers are beginning to find out about our book, Santa’s (Zany, Wacky, Just Not Right!) Night Before Christmas.  It doesn’t seem to matter that Halloween isn’t even here yet.  Christmas is on the minds of little ones all year long.  And some of these reviews prove it! The reviews are beginning to pour in.  And we are excited to hear about kids that can’t put our purple Santa to rest and have to take him to bed!  Let us know what you and your kids think!  Kindle version is available now.  Hardcopy pre-order now for delivery October 1. If you want to write about it, blog about it, pin about it, let us know!

Here are some reviewers that just couldn’t wait.  We don’t blame them.