Posted in Book Review

Unstinky

By Andy Rash

Funny start when I wrote “Unstinky” first, it autocorrected to “I stinky”. Funny but not! I received this F&G from the publisher so I could review it. F&Gs are the last review copy before a book goes to official publishing. They are folded and gathered but usually not stapled. This can make for a silly story if they get out of order.

This book is about a stink bug who can not be even the slightest bit stinky. The stink bug always gets last place in the stink contests. Then he becomes friends with a bee when he just stinks up the smell of FLOWERS.

I like this book because the stink bug gets to be friends with the bees.

I recommend this book to kids who are different than their friends. I give this book 15 stars!

Posted in Book Review

The Fly with one Eye

By R.M. Halterman

This book is about a fly with one eye and how she helps when the three legged puppy falls of the the not-wanted toy rack at the store.

I like this book because it shows a very good act of kindness for people who your not friends with.

I recommend this book to kids in the grades k-2 but everyone can enjoy it!

I give this book 15 different stars πŸ‘ΆπŸΏπŸ‘΅πŸ»πŸ‘΅πŸΏπŸ‘ΆπŸ»πŸ§’πŸΎπŸ‘±πŸ»β€β™‚οΈπŸ‘©πŸ»πŸ§‘πŸ½πŸ§›πŸ½β€β™‚οΈπŸ§šπŸΌβ€β™€οΈπŸ‘•πŸ‘ πŸ§’πŸ‘—πŸ§πŸŒπŸ™πŸ™‚

Posted in Book Review

The Princess and the Pit Stop

By Tom Angleberger

Illustrated by Dan Santat

This book is about a princess who is in a race but when she goes to the pitstop and learns that she is last place. Then she speeds up and passes all the fairy tale/ nursery rhymes characters and then she—-SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

😬 oops. I like this book because it is a princess who is racing . The illustrations are very detailed and I see Speed Racer influences. Lil brother really likes Speed Racer.

I think this is a fun way to include all the nursery rhymes. It is really fun to read it.

I recommend this to kids who like racing and need a laugh. Also kids who don’t think girls can be race car drivers.

Posted in Meet the authors

Matt Brennan

Website:Β Β https://mattarama2000.wixsite.com/website

Social media: FB page:Β Β https://www.facebook.com/Start-in-the-Middle-Books-230741110850540/?modal=admin_todo_tour

Tell me a little about you:

My friends call me the game master.Β  I love playing games.Β  For video games, I prefer the silly, fun ones like Lego Harry Potter.Β  For board games, it depends on the group – you have to read the room.Β  But I do love games where you get to lie to your friends, because that’s something I don’t do in my real life, and I’m so good at it!

When you were my age (9), did you like to read?Β Β 

I’ve always been a voracious reader, with a lot of science fiction and fantasy.Β  Everything from Lord of the Rings to Danny Dunn and the Time Machine.Β  I was always bugging my mom to take me back to the library.

What was your favorite author or book?Β Β 

One of my favorites was the Choose Your Own Adventure books.Β  I would read them over and over, then scan through to make sure I’d found every ending.Β  You can see the consequences of this in my own book, which has hidden pages that are not part of the main story.Β  I love the idea that people will get to the end, then wonder if they did something wrong because they never visited the 1970’s.

how do you get your story ideas?

I love puzzles, so I set myself a challenge.Β  In this case, it was why would it make sense for a book to start in the middle?Β  And the next challenge, or puzzle, was to block it all out so that the time travel makes sense, even when our heroes are running into themselves over and over in the middle of their adventure.Β  Also, when I was young, I used to have dreams that were cliffhangers.Β  I’d find myself in an impossible situation, like trapped in a room with the water rising, or with the earth being surrounded by aliens and no way to fight them.Β  And I wouldn’t know how to get out of it.Β  So I’d tell my subconscious to work on it, and later on – sometimes a week later, sometimes months or a year – I’d have a dream where I found my way out of it.Β  And I still do that today – I’ll tell my subconscious to work on a problem and I’ll check back with it later.

– is it hard to write a book?

Yes and no.Β  The actual writing isn’t so difficult.Β  I think I have a way with words.Β  But one of my big problems is that my characters tend to be very passive, like myself.Β  Which does not usually make for a good protagonist.Β  You usually want someone with a clear goal and obstacles to overcome, not just swept along by events.

what authors do you like right now? Any lesser known ones you can recommend?

My favorite current author is Lisa Lutz, author of The Spellman Files and The Passenger and her one subversive kid’s book, How to Negotiate Everything.Β  She writes characters that feel very real, but are caught up in a mystery.Β  She can be laugh-out-loud funny or dark and unsettling.Β  Read her books!Β  They are amazing.Β  I also recently read the Origami Yoda series of books, which were funny and geeky and had great life lessons without being preachy.

what is the best part of being an author?

Hearing that someone enjoyed what I wrote.Β  I had an early version of Time Sandwich kinda just stapled together with clip art I grabbed off of the internet, and I gave it to my landlord’s kid, and she told me later that he read it over and over.Β  That was extremely gratifying, and part of what motivated me to actually get the book finished.Β  On the other hand, I’m not great at receiving compliments, so if you like the book, let me know in an email.Β  P.S. When I got the advance copies of Time Sandwich, I gave that kid the first one.

any advice for a kid who wants to be an author?

I’m thinking it would help to partner with someone.Β  If you like to write and your friend likes to draw, then collaborate.Β  Or partner with an adult who will help keep you on track, but not just do the work for you.

– If you could portal into any of your works, which would you portal into?

I’m obsessed with time travel, so it would have to be this book, Time Sandwich.Β  See dinosaurs?Β  Ride futuristic roller coasters?Β  Get stuck in a time loop for all of eternity?Β  Count me in!

Posted in Book Review

Time Sandwich

By Matt Brennan

Illustrated by Jonathan Reich

I was sent this book in exchange for a review. I am going to be honest this is a hard book to read. It isn’t impossible but it is out of order. It is supposed to be. You start the book in the middle and then follow arrows to the next portion. You are jumping all over the book. It is just as confusing as I bet time travel would be so I guess the book works in that way. It is a book about time travel. Things would be all mixed up.

I haven’t decided what I think about this book. It is very challenging for a reader like me. I do think there are readers who would like the challenge of this book. I think of the arrow lines were thicker and bolder it would be easier to find your next spot. Maybe a cheat sheet in the back! If you think it is a very messed up choose your own adventure, you will have a crazy adventure.

I think this is a book that would be an interesting addition to a classroom. It is a very creative book style. This is probably an idea a lot of kids have for a book. Heck this is just like when my F&Gs get all mixed up.

If you are up for a challenge, this is it.

Posted in Book Review

Bridget Fidget and the most perfect pet

By Joe Berger

This book is about a girl named Bridget who gets a box from the pet store, now Bridget’s always wanted a pet unicorn but when she gets the box she thinks it is too small for a unicorn and thinks it could be a PENGUIN! Then when she finds an even smaller box she thinks it could be a mouse but instead she gets a Cukoo Clock. But that’s not the ending.

I like this book because it is like a biography of ME. But some parts aren’t true like I don’t want a unicorn but I do want a penguin. I can be messy. I can be inpatient. I can be loud. And my name is Bridget. Oh and I am fidgety!

I recommend to kids who wish for crazy pets. My best friend would love this book!

Posted in Book Review

Thunder Girls: Freya and the Magic Jewel

By Joan Holub and Suzanne Williams

This book is about the Norse goddess Freya at her new school Asgard Academy and on her way there she losses her magical jewel Beijing which can tell the future and make prophesies. She’s also trying to find her amma Gullvieg.

I like this book because the characters are strong girls and the boys aren’t as cool.

I recommend This book to kids who like the Goddess Girls series.

I give this 15 strong female stars πŸ‘±πŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸ‘±πŸΌβ€β™€οΈπŸ‘±πŸ½β€β™€οΈπŸ‘±πŸΎβ€β™€οΈπŸ‘±πŸΏβ€β™€οΈπŸ’ͺ🏿πŸ’ͺ🏾πŸ’ͺ🏽πŸ’ͺ🏼πŸ’ͺπŸ»πŸ’«β­οΈπŸŒŸβœ¨β˜€οΈ