Posted in Book Review


By Lisa Mantchev

Illustrations by Hyewon Yum

I really liked Strictly No Elephants so when I saw this at the library, I had to borrow it. This seems like the pets continue to meet up and this time, they help Narwhal have an adventure. She wants to see the world but she stuck in a fishbowl. She has no feet and no clue how to tell directions. She is really nice and cute. Her friends help her out and take on a walk around the city. To her it is like exploring the world.

I like the story shows friendship can help and how you can be brave in experiencing something new and scary. Her friends were there for her. They supported her and helped her solve her problem. No one made her feel bad.

I think the illustrations are nice. I want a pet Narwhal now.

I recommend this book to kids who want to know how to be a friend. To kids who are scared or who have a big adventure soon.

Posted in Meet the authors

Meet the author: Lisa Mantchev

Author website/social media: (links to everything else on that page)When you were my age, did you like to read?  

I loved to read so much when I was younger that if I got into trouble, my mom grounded me FROM BOOKS. Seriously, I remember it being like torture, so I tried to never get into trouble. I would read in the car, in the bathtub, and in the closet (for privacy… I have a younger sister who used to be a pain in my backside.) I used to spend hours sitting on the floors of the library and our local bookstore, too.

What was your favorite story? My first “favorite” book was BALLET SHOES by Noel Streatfeild. Then I read all her other novels, and other old-fashioned favorites like SECRET GARDEN, A LITTLE PRINCESS, MARY POPPINS, and such. I liked books set in England, especially if they included boarding schools and theatre. As a grown-up, I got to revisit that when the HARRY POTTER series came out!
How do you get your ideas? My ideas come from everywhere… from conversations with my kids to the pictures I see on Pinterest to memes that are posted on Facebook. Basically, my mind is always open for a story seed to be planted.
Is it hard to write a book? Yes! It takes a lot of time and concentration and determination and focus to write and revise a novel. The picture books are easier, because they are shorter, but they still take concentration and attention to detail, because you have to make each word count.
Do you have a favorite among the books you have written/illustrated? That is like picking a favorite kid. I don’t think I’m allowed. *whispers* The tiny elephant book is my favorite right now.
What author do you really like right now? I am reading Terry Pratchett’s Tiffany Aching series. I love all of his Discworld books. He is very good at being very funny, but all the jokes are smart jokes. Also, he made me realize it was all right to write humor in my own books.
What advice do you have for a kid who wants to be an author? READ, READ, READ. WRITE, WRITE, WRITE. You have to treat it like a job where you are the boss. You answer to yourself by setting challenges and meeting deadlines. Also, there are conventions where you can go and listen to authors speak about all sorts of things, so start going to those as early as possible. Meeting other authors is an important thing we call “networking.” Knowing people in the industry is always a good thing.
Posted in Book Review

Strictly No Elephants

Strictly No Elephants
Illustrated by: Taeeun Yoo
Strictly No Elephants is about a boy and his pet elephant. They were going to a pet club together. They were very excited. When they arrived, there was a sign that said “Strictly No Elephants.” They were sad. They found another kid and pet who also couldn’t join the club. So they became friends and made their own club for everyone and their pets.
I liked it because the boy made a special club for everyone. I sometimes feel left out at school and I know it hurts. I would love to join a club for everyone. I would love to have a pet penguin or puffin or elephant or pink hippo, but Mom and Dad say no.
I think everyone should read this. If you are wanting to make a club, you should read this.