Tag Archive: illustrations



Children's book: The Unruly Orchestra: Learn about musical instruments and the symphonic orchestraChildren’s book: The Unruly Orchestra: Learn about musical instruments and the symphonic orchestra by Daphna Lustiger
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I voluntarily read to review this book.

Almost. That is the best thing I can say. I was excited, as a former music major, to see a picture book about the orchestra. But on the first page, I got disappointed. Two of the instruments named were not shown.

The text wasn’t rhythmic or as fun as it could be. And I think it still needs a good editor.

The pictures were fun and I wanted the story to be as fun.

Still, I would have read it to my children. I think I could have made it more fun with sounds of the instruments lined up to actually introduce each part. It could be a fun story, if cleaned up a bit, to a field trip to a concert or an educational segment about Peter and the Wolf, and possibly pulling out triangles and fun band percussion instruments. and a good old march around the classroom.

My deepest disappointment was the piano not named as it was being called a pipe organ (not usually in an orchestra, and no pipes).

Still, the book could have hope with a bit more clean up.

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Reiki: Reiki For Beginners, A Complete Guide To The Holistic Healing Modality Usui Reiki Level 2, Reiki: Reiki For Beginners, A Complete Guide To The Holistic Healing Modality Usui Reiki Level 2, “FREE GIFT INCLUDED” Heal Yourself And Increase Your Energy With Reiki.Manual level 2 by Djamel Boucly
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’ve read a few books on Reiki. Most of them have nuggets of beauty and health. I loved this one. There is something for everyone, Reiki attuned or just curious. There are enough references to learn a lot about metaphysical healing. There are healing avenues addressed in this book, including sound, color, and chakra healings. And it was free when I picked it up.

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Mary Poppins: 80th Anniversary CollectionMary Poppins: 80th Anniversary Collection by P.L. Travers
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

When I was in fifth grade, I was a library regular. I would check out the limit of ten books at a time. Mary Poppins was a series I got into and read all of them. I never had seen Julie Andrews version. We weren’t allowed to go to movies in my family. Maybe that’s the reason I am so into movies now?

Anyway, I wasn’t a fan of the illustrations, still don’t care for them. I got irritated with Michael getting so much attention. I felt that this read through, too.

Something that I noticed that I don’t remember my childhood thoughts on. How prideful Mary Poppins was, and how grumpy/bossy she was. But now that it’s been a couple days since I finished this quartet of books I think I’m glad she was that way. She didn’t feel she needed to tell the family when she’d be leaving. She rarely admitted to the kids about her friends or her habits with them. It was like she had her own life apart from the wards of her job. I think she shows women and girls that they don’t have to tell everything and they can be independent.

Since I read these four books in a row using text-to-speech, I didn’t notice where one book ended and another began–except when she left and said she wasn’t coming back–but then she came back.

I don’t remember finding the adventures tedious as a child. But as an adult, I see they are far too similar and I lost interest sometimes.

Particular to this version, the Audible available as whispersynch to this book was just for the first book. Most folks would probably read on without a problem. I need the text-to-speech to take over and it was hard to make my Fire understand that. The good news was that I called Amazon and they made it all good. I had loved the Audible narration. I just didn’t have the money to get the rest of the books at that time. They let me remove it and then my text-to-speech with the British voice that always sounds like Julie Andrews got me through the rest of the books.

Now I feel ready to watch the new Mary Poppins movie.

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50 Loom Knitted Stuffed Animal Pattern Collection50 Loom Knitted Stuffed Animal Pattern Collection by Scarlett Royale
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book is kept for its reference capabilities. I have not made every animal in the book. But I have made enough to know that I am happy to have the book.

One of the problems I have with the book is that sometimes the patterns can be confusing and there are a few errors. But the best part of this book is the links to the tutorials. They take you right to the YouTube teaching how to make what you want to make. My latest is the snowman, that looks so cute! And it had very little sewing.

I would like to someday get the paper version so I don’t have to be on the computer while making these little cuties. But in the meantime, this will do!

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The Walking Dead, Vol. 2: Miles Behind UsThe Walking Dead, Vol. 2: Miles Behind Us by Robert Kirkman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I love two-parter, year-long Christmas gifts! You see I promised my adult son one Walking Dead paperback a month and promised myself the Kindle version for me. So I got number two at the beginning of this month as he already had book one.

I didn’t even bother trying to read the paper version. The font is too light. But I love the Kindle version. I can tap on any picture and enlarge it. Every aspect of the drawing is there, all the word clear. It makes me want to do a lot of comic books this way.

This particular volume takes us to the farm and Hershel and Maggie. It wasn’t as detailed as the episodes that we binged a few years ago. Yet it is fun to see how this story continued when it was fresh from Robert Kirkman’s imagination. I love how the show has tried to stay true and yet worked with Mr. Kirkman on new storylines to make a fantastic show about people dealing with survival.

Can’t wait for next month!

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Extra YarnExtra Yarn by Mac Barnett
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is a review for the Audible version of the book. I can’t afford to buy the paperback or hardback right now but couldn’t wait to read it as I heard it was exquisite.

I love picture books. They inspire my inner artist. Still… I’m truly surprised to see how much fun just listening to the story without pictures was.

Narrated by Nicola Barber with accompanying music made this a beautiful story about never-ending yarn. Don’t think that this magic was lost on this knitter. I almost have that wonderful situation. I get to knit from donated yarn. I make comfort items for the homeless, homebound, cancer patients and others. It is a win-win craft for me. I get to knit forever and other people get warm hats or toys or scarves… I haven’t knitted a sweater yet, but it would be fun to yarn bomb everyone and everything around me!

I’m hoping to finally READ and enjoy the pictures in the book someday soon, but this Audible version does hold its own.

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The Magic of Friendship SnowThe Magic of Friendship Snow by Andi Cann
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a cute picture book for winter. The pictures are lovely and the story was sweet. I think my only problem was how the girl could give the snowman to her human friend when it wasn’t winter. But maybe I missed something. I read it just before bed and I was so sleepy. But nice to read that story of learning to be a friend.

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The Litter of the Law (Mrs. Murphy, #22)The Litter of the Law by Rita Mae Brown
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I was given this book by a friend who read it on her vacation and left it with me when she visited. It took me so long as the font is rather small so I could only take it in bits and pieces. There was enough dialogue to break up the page so I could read it in tiny doses.

The book kept my interest. I did want to find out more about the farming and life of these farm people. I loved reading about the characters. I found the Native American research interesting though it added to the shame of how our founders dealt with the original inhabitants of our country.

I absolutely loved the drawings. Yay for adult books that have pictures!

What I found annoying and distracting from the story: talking animals. But I suppose that is where the ‘cozy’ comes in for this mystery.

I love Halloween but I never go to ‘haunted house’ features because I worry that real blood could be involved with no one knowing. And I hate things jumping out at me to make me scream or be startled. This book just reinforced those fears. It is what made this a gruesome mystery rather than cozy. But others of you may love it and can read it with the grain of salt that is implied. I’m glad to finally be finished and to pass it to the friends of the library.

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Stand Tall, Molly Lou MelonStand Tall, Molly Lou Melon by Patty Lovell
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Wow, there are tons of five-star ratings for this book. Yeah, it’s cute, though it reminds me of Doctor Suess’s characters. Maybe a Who of Whoville?

This little girl has the stack against her. Her grandma gives her good advice. But the next part makes me question everything. Her talents save her from a bully. What about the kids that don’t know their own talents? How will they win over the bully?

Maybe I’m just having a bad day in my reviewing? I just didn’t enjoy this book, nor could I see my kids, when they were little, liking this book.

I’ll go sit in the corner until I feel better, I guess as it seems most everyone else loves this book. Enjoy!

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Toys Meet Snow: Being the Wintertime Adventures of a Curious Stuffed Buffalo, a Sensitive Plush Stingray, and a Book-loving Rubber Ball (Toys, #4)Toys Meet Snow: Being the Wintertime Adventures of a Curious Stuffed Buffalo, a Sensitive Plush Stingray, and a Book-loving Rubber Ball by Emily Jenkins
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Some books offer depth or poetry. I hate to admit that the story here is overdone. But the pictures make up for it. Unfortunately, I don’t think this book would have gotten home. I think my kids would have liked it but would have left it to be reshelved. As an adult, I appreciate the artwork and would love to have it around to practice drawing/coloring some of these illustrations. It is through that aspect that I give it four stars.

Maybe kids that don’t live where it snows would find this interesting? I wish I could say more about this. I’m sure other love this and I’m just missing something here.

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