Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Draw What You See: The Life and Art of Benny Andrews by Kathleen Benson & Benny Andrews


Release Date: January 6, 2015
Publisher & ARC: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
ISBN: 9780544104877
Hardcover: $12.38
Ages: 4-8

About the Author:
Kathleen Benson is the author of several picture books, many of which she co-authored with her late husband, Jim Haskins, including John Lewis in the Lead, which won the NCSS Carter G. Woodson Award for the most distinguished social science book for young readers that depicts ethnicity in the United States. Kathy is currently a Project Director at the Museum of the City of New York. She lives in Manhattan. 

Review:
Many people may not be familiar with the art of Benny Andrews before reading Benson's book; I was one of those. How I feel like I've lost so much time not knowing his artwork, yet I feel fortunate now to have been exposed to it. 

Benny Andrews was born in Plainview, Georgia in 1930, and while some of his greatest artwork came from the time he learned to draw at three years old to his early adulthood, he is perhaps most recently recognized from his time spent in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. For many children, Katrina meant leaving home and learning in a new school, but Andrews taught them how to express what they saw and felt, how to take the tragedy that Katrina brought and turn it into something beautiful. 

Monday, December 29, 2014

Kid Presidents: True Tales of Childhood From America's Presidents by David Stabler



Release Date: October 28, 2014
Publisher and ARC: Quirk Books
ISBN:9781594747311
Hardcover: $11.68 (Amazon, B&N)
Ages: 9-12

About the Author:
David Stableris the kid-friendly alter ego of Robert Schnakenberg, the author of several books of pop history including Secret Lives of Great Authors, Secret Lives of the Supreme Court, and Distory: A Treasury of Historical Insults.Visit the websitehere.
Review:
We all have our opinions of the President of the United States based on our own set of values. With each inauguration, Americans are hopeful that the new President will change the United States for the better, progressing in education, economics, government, and technology. What we don't get to see as citizens, unless we do our own research, is the back story of each of these men (perhaps one day a woman?). What was it like to be a kid, not knowing that one day he will be President, not knowing that one day he will change the world for the better, or sometimes the worse.David Stabler and illustrator Doogie Horner give kids a glimpse into the life of a kid president.

(Review) Influenster's Frosty Vox Box



Influenster's Frosty Vox Box is amazing! There are so many great products that I was almost overwhelmed when I opened it. (I get a little excited when I receive free products to review). I can honestly say that there's not one product in the box that I would say not to buy.

No7 Protect and Perfect ADVANCED Sachet: Though a small sample (the product takes two weeks to see results), after one use, my skin was softer.

NYC Expert Last Lip Color in Sugar Plum: Fruity, pleasant smell and glossy color. Stays on through a shower.

Celestial Seasonings Candy Cane Lane Decaf Green Tea: Pepperminty green tea that's soothing and smooth.

EcoTools Hair Brush: Defrizzes hair and leaves hair smooth and shiny.

Rimmel Gently Eye Make Up Remover and Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Kajal Eyeliner: Make Up Remover is gentle and completely removes waterproof eye makeup. Scadaleyes eyeliner glides on and stays all day.

McCormick Gourmet Thyme: Perfect for chicken, pork, steak,and any vegetable, this herb is versatile and savory.

Fruit Vines Bites: If you like Twizzlers, you will love fruit vines. Just as sweet and tasty, low-fat, and perfect for sneaking into the movies.


(Photo Op) EcoTools Hairbrush



This EcoTools hairbrush is perfect for smoothing frizzy hair or pumping up the volume in a ponytail.

(Taste Test) Celestial Seasonings


I am a tea drinker,  not coffee, and Celestial Seasonings has always been my favorite tea brand because of the variety in flavors. I always start looking for their holiday teas after Thanksgiving, and I've got to say that this is a new favorite that I will look for every year. Candy Cane Lane is perfect for me because it's peppermint taste soothes my sinuses. The green tea properties are definitely a healthy part of my daily routine, and the decaffeinated tea ensures I'm not jittery. Soothing for any day!

*I received this product for free to review.

(Make Up Review) Rimmel


No matter how hard we try, removing eye make up is one of the hardest parts of cleaning our faces before we go to bed. You can't scrub too hard because the tender skin around your eyes will easily become aggravated. Enter Rimmel's Gently Eye Make Up Remover, which is exactly what it says, gentle. In just a few seconds, you can remove as much eye make up as you thought you needed that morning. 


I love eye liner because it makes your eyes pop, no matter what color they are. Rimmel's Scadaleyes eyeliner glides on so smoothly and effortlessly that you're done in less than ten seconds. It won't smudge (unless you want it to), and it stays on all day. 

*I received both of these products for free to test.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Random House Children's Books Blog Tour: All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven


Release Date: January 6, 2015
Publisher and ARC: Random House Children's
ISBN:9780385755887
Hardcover: $13.49 (Amazon, B&N)
Ages: 14+

About the Author:
(From Jennifer's website)By the time I was ten, I had already written numerous songs, a poem for Parker Stevenson ("If there were a Miss America for men, You would surely win"), two autobiographies (All About Me My Life in Indiana: I Will Never Be Happy Again), a Christmas story, several picture books (which I illustrated myself) featuring the Doodle Bugs from Outer Space, a play about Laura Ingalls Wilder's sister entitledBlindness Strikes Mary, a series of prison mysteries, a collection of short stories featuring me as the main character (an internationally famous rock star detective), and a partially finished novel about Vietnam. I was also an excellent speller from a very early age.
In 2000, I started writing full-time, and I haven't stopped... I've written eight books, and when I'm not working on the ninth, I'm contributing to my web magazine,Germ, thinking up new books, and dabbling in TV. I am always writing.Visit her websitehere.
Review:
Okay, Christmas is over, so it's time to get back to writing, and I can think of no other book to review than Jennifer Niven's All the Bright Places. Whether you're a teen right now or an adult, we've all experienced the rich kid and the freak, the pretty girl and the nerd, the haves and the have-nots. For some, you've been on one side or the other; for others, you've watched it play out like a soap opera in the halls of your high school. For Finch and Violet, they are living it. "Is today a good day to die?" Such an opening to a book guarantees it's going to be an enthralling tale, and so it goes with Niven's novel. Finch, Theodore Finch that is, begins by explaining that he constantly thinks about death and how it would be best to die. And he's thinking about this from the roof of his high school. Leaning over the edge, six stories in the air, Finch is wondering if jumping would be the best way, then suddenly he notices that he's not on the roof alone. Violet is the type of girl that has a "following." She's a cheerleader, she's pretty, she's popular, but there's more to her that meets the eye (I know, cliche, but it works here). The year before Violet is deciding her fate on the rooftop, she lost her sister Eleanor in a car accident that involved her parents. Since her sister's death, Violet has stopped writing for the beauty website she and her sister created, and she has to talk to her guidance counselor on a regular basis. How imperfectly perfect that these two should meet so serendipitously. From the encounter on the rooftop, Violet and Finch go on a journey (literally because of a school project) to discover what each other has lying underneath the surface of suicide statistics and awkward withdrawal.What follows is a tragically romantic dual narrative of Finch struggling with his own suicidal tendencies, and ironically attempting to convince Violet that there's more to life than living in the past. With an epigraph from Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms, Nivens chronicles the broken and the broken-hearted.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Read the First Twelve Chapters of Cori McCarthy's Breaking Sky

Release Date: March 10, 2015
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
ISBN 9781492601418

READ THE FIRST TWELVE CHAPTERS HERE
Bookshout Code: https://bookshout.com/breakingsky?code=BREAKINGSKY

In this high-flying, adrenaline-fueled thriller, America’s best hope is the elite teen fighter pilots of the United Star Academy.
“The author's storytelling is incredibly cinematic, equally adept at capturing extended flight sequences and Chase's interpersonal struggles. Emotions run high toward the novel's end, and the author isn't afraid to play a bit rough, making this feel less like a novel capitalizing on current trends and more like a great story being told in a very cool way. Smart, exciting, confident—and quite possibly the next Big Thing.” – Kirkus Reviews
Fly to the last drop of fuel. Fight to the last drop of blood.
Showoff. Reckless. Maverick. Chase Harcourt, call sign “Nyx”, isn’t one to play it safe. In the year 2048, America is locked in a cold war – and the country’s best hope is the elite teen fighter pilots of the United Star Academy. Chase is one of only two daredevil pilots chosen to fly an experimental “Streaker” jet. But few know the pain and loneliness of her past. All anyone cares about is that Chase aces the upcoming Streaker trials, proving the prototype jet can knock the enemy out of the sky.
But as the world tilts toward war, Chase cracks open a military secret. There’s a third Streaker, whose young hotshot pilot, Tristan, can match her on the ground and in the clouds. And Chase doesn’t play well with others. But to save her country, she may just have to put her life in the hands of the competition.
Cori McCarthy’s taut, romantic, action adventure will shoot your pulse straight into overdrive with her brilliantly imagined and frighteningly possible future.



A Violin for Elva by Mary Lyn Ray, Illustrated by Tricia Tusa



Release Date: January 13, 2015
Publisher and ARC: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
ISBN: 9780152254834
Hardcover: $16.99 (Amazon, B&N)
Ages: 4-8

About the Author:
MARY LYN RAY has written many acclaimed books for children, including New York Times best-seller Stars, illustrated by Marla Frazee; Pumpkins, illustrated by Barry Root; and Red Rubber Boot Day and Mud, both illustrated by Lauren Stringer. She lives in South Danbury, New Hampshire . Visit her website here

Review:
Each of us has our own ambitions when we are young, and the entire world seems to be in front of us. Some, like me, want to be teachers, some want to be doctors, some want to travel the world, and some, like Elva, want to play the violin. Once we have our dream determined, we look to our parents for approval. This is where Elva's dream ends, but only for a while.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

For Real by Alison Cherry


Release Date: December 9, 2014
Publisher and ARC/eARC: Random House Children's
ISBN: 9780385742955
Hardcover: $13.22 (Amazon, B&N)
Ages: 12-17



About the Author:
Alison grew up in Evanston, IL. She is a professional photographer and spent many years working as a lighting designer for theater, opera, and dance. Now she lives in Brooklyn and writes young adult novels full time. She is represented by the lovely and amazing Holly Root of Waxman Leavell. Visit her website here
Review:
For those readers with an older sister, this book will definitely hit home. Eighteen year old Claire looks up to her big sister Miranda as much as any little sister would. And such a devoted sister would also go to great lengths to protect her sister, especially in the case of heartbreak.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Mythmaker: The Life of J.R.R. Tolkien, Creator of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings by Anne E. Neimark


Release Date: September 28, 2014

Publisher and ARC: Hougton Mifflin
ISBN: 9780544023246

With the success of the Lord of the Rings trilogy in theaters, many non-readers came to know Frodo Baggins as the hobbit with the eccentric uncle Bilbo Baggins. Wanting to know Bilbo's backstory, either through the new Hobbit trilogy or J.R.R. Tolkien's novel, those same non-readers suddenly became readers. For fans of the novel from the beginning, The Hobbit holds a special place in the hearts of many new, young readers as well as those who grew up with the novel and are now enjoying it on film (well, maybe, but that's a review for my husband Brett Gallman). 


In order to fully understand the power of Tolkien's novels, one must understand the man himself. Anne E. Neimark steps forward with an accessible biography of the man who brought hobbits, shires, elves, and orcs to life. 

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Rebels by Accident by Patricia Dunn (Sourcebooks Virtual Tour)

Release Date: December 2, 2014
Publisher and eARC: Sourcebooks Fire
ISBN: 9781492601388
Trade Paper/$9.99 U.S.
Ages: 12+



About the Author:

Patricia Dunn’s writing has appeared in Salon.com, Christian Science Monitor, Village Voice, The Nation, LA Weekly, and others.
With an MFA in creative writing from Sarah Lawrence College, where she also teaches, the Bronx- raised rebel and former resident of Cairo is now settled in Connecticut, with her husband, teenage son, and toddler dog. Visit her website here
Review:
Journalist Patricia Dunn boldly steps her foot in the YA waters with her debut novel, Rebels by Accident. Fifteen year old Mariam is an Egyptian American living in a post-9/11 world where it's already tough to be a teenager, much less one who physically resembles what many stereotypically consider a terrorist. 

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Magnolia by Kristi Cook


Release Date: August 5, 2014
Publisher & ARC: Simon Pulse

From Goodreads: "In Magnolia Branch, Mississippi, the Cafferty and Marsden families are southern royalty. Neighbors since the Civil War, the families have shared vacations, holidays, backyard barbecues, and the overwhelming desire to unite their two clans by marriage. So when a baby boy and girl were born to the families at the same time, the perfect opportunity seemed to have finally arrived.

Jemma Cafferty and Ryder Marsden have no intention of giving in to their parents’ wishes. They’re only seventeen, for goodness’ sake, not to mention that one little problem: They hate each other! Jemma can’t stand Ryder’s nauseating golden-boy persona, and Ryder would like nothing better than to pretend stubborn Jemma doesn’t exist.

But when a violent storm ravages Magnolia Branch, it unearths Jemma’s and Ryder’s true feelings for each other as the two discover that the line between love and hate may be thin enough to risk crossing over."

Thursday, December 4, 2014

A Pirate's Night Before Christmas by Philip Yates, Illustrated by Sebastia Serra


Release Date: October 7, 2014
Publisher and ARC: Sterling Children's Books

Well, shiver me timbers! Philip Yates and Sebastia Serra are bringing Christmas to the pirate's ship. "Twas the night before Christmas aboard the Black Sark. Not a creature was stirrin', not even a shark! This adventurous twist on the classic, complete with pirate glossary, is perfect for the holidays!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

The Great Reindeer Rebellion by Lisa Trumbauer and Jannie Ho



Release Date: October 7, 2014
Publisher and ARC: Sterling Children's Books

"Twas the week before Christmas, and somewhere up north,
dear Santa was frantic-he paced back and forth.
He had just heard some news that he sure didn't like:
it seemed that the reindeer were going on STRIKE!"


For many families, reading The Night Before Christmas is a Christmas tradition, one that helps to put many children to bed early on Christmas Eve! The anticipation of Santa Claus coming down the chimney to deliver presents is enough for any child (and child at heart) to have a sleepless, Christmas Eve night, but what if Santa's reindeer went on strike? Who would help Santa deliver the presents?

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Little Blue Truck's Christmas by Alice Schertle and Jill McElmurry


Release Date: September 23, 2014
Publisher and ARC: HMH Books for Young Readers
Ages: 1-3


We are only a few days away from December and Christmas time! With the beginning of the holiday season, Schertle and McElmurry's charming children's book is perfect for young children learning to count from one to five!

Marx by Corinne Maier and Anne Simon (English Edition)


Release Date: English edition, October 14, 2014
Publisher and ARC: Nobrow

For many, Karl Marx is the author of The Communist Manifesto and the "devil for decrying Capitalism." His support of a world "free from exploitation, inequality, unemployment" was championed by minorities and those searching for equal rights and justice; however, many disagreed with his revolutionary solutions.

Round is a Mooncake by Roseanne Thong and Grace Lin

Release Date: September 16, 2014
Publisher and ARC: Chronicle
Ages: 3-5


Picture books are notorious for depicting shapes and vocabulary suitable for young children, but Thong and Lin's book goes beyond the suggested three to five age limit and presents a beautiful, multicultural experience in learning shapes and vocabulary.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

New Mockingjay Mazda TV Spot

Beetee sends Peeta a message from District 13.

New Insurgent Trailer



Shailene Woodley reprises her role as Tris in the sequel to Divergent, the blockbuster hit and book franchise. In this teaser (which is the best kind of trailer), Tris must defy reality. For fans of the book series, the trailer is enough to pump you up for the film's release set on March 20, 2015; however, newcomers, or non-readers, may be left completely confused. Hopefully Woodley has built enough of a reputation for herself to drawn in audiences and reach the same numbers as Divergent's release. 

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Ghost House by Alexandra Adornetto


Release Date: August 26th, 2014
Publisher and ARC: Harlequin Teen

Imagine being a teenager and suddenly losing your mother. Imagine your ability to see ghosts as a child suddenly returns after your mother's death. This is Chloe's new life, and in order to adjust, she must move to England with her brother and grandmother. There, Chloe meets a mysterious, handsome guy, but there's definitely more to him than meets the eye.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Watched by CJ Lyons




Release Date: November 4, 2014
Publisher and ARC: Sourcebooks Fire

With the endless growth of social media and cell phone technology, many teens are becoming paranoid that someone is "watching" their every post, tweet, and text. Be it the government or their parents, teens are aware that every move they make is seemingly public. For sixteen year old Jesse, he knows all too well the consequences of online blackmail at the hand of the King.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Kismet Book Tours and Giveaway (at bottom of blog): Karen Ann Hopkins Delights with Embers

There are descendants of angels walking among us. Ember is one of them. And she may be the only hope mankind has as the rapture approaches and evil rises.
Embers is an epic paranormal adventure about an eighteen year old girl who discovers that she's immune to fire and any other injury when she’s in a horrific car crash that kills her parents. Following a violent episode with her aunt's boyfriend, Ember flees Ohio to live with an old relative in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee. Ember's exuberance at escaping a bad home life soon turns to trepidation when she finds out that she's a Watcher, a descendant of angels. While Ember learns about her heritage and the powers that go along with it, she strikes up friendships with two young men who live in a frightening walled compound in the forest. Inexplicitly drawn to one of the men in particular, an impossible romance develops. But it is cut short when Ember discovers that her new friends are fighting on the opposite side of a war—one that’s been raging between two factions of Watchers for thousands of years. When the compound’s inhabitants threaten the townspeople, Ember takes action, sealing her fate in the ancient battle of good versus evil—and the grayness in between. Ember is up to the challenge, until she realizes that she isn’t only fighting for the lives of the locals and the souls of her new friends. She also might be one of the few champions who will make a stand for all of mankind as the rapture approaches and the end of days begin.
Embers is a dark and gritty YA novel that’s the first book in the series, The Wings of War.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

NEW Into the Woods Images--Johnny Depp's Wolf Looks Like the Mad Hatter, no?





Entertainment Weekly has revealed some new images from Rob Marshall's Into the Woods. With an already star-studded cast, the musical promises to be one of the biggest films to close out 2014. When I first saw the trailer in theaters, I thought it was odd that only Johnny Depp's hand was shown; however, I can admit that I wasn't too intrigued as Depp has recently played too many zany characters. He used to be one my favorite actors (beginning with A Nightmare on Elm Street), but he has become too entranced in being the oddball that I'm afraid he's forgotten his true self. He is simply becoming one of Tim Burton's outlandish characters in every role he chooses. But I digress. Here are some of Entertainment Weekly's newly released photos of the film.

Monday, October 20, 2014

The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey



Release Date: September 15, 2014
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile

Rick Yancey returns with the sequel to The 5th Wave, which followed Cassie's fight for survival after the fifth wave of an alien invasion. Brave and intuitively skilled, Cassie outsmarted aliens who had overtaken teen bodies. To protect her brother, she didn't let anything stand in her way, until she met Evan Walker, who saved her on the road and appeared like the perfect guy. Of course, she realized by the end of the book that Evan wasn't what he seemed, but it was too late for Cassie. She was already in love. Now, we pick up with the survivors, including Ringer, who leads the way toward changing the future.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Goosebumps Most Wanted Special Edition #1: Zombie Halloween by R.L. Stine


Release Date: June 24, 2014
Publisher and ARC: Scholastic

Any person who considers himself/herself a reader began with Goosebumps. For me, it was Goosebumps around ages nine and ten, and I then I moved up to the Fear Street series around thirteen. R.L. Stine was my reading life. Now that I'm almost thirty-one (yikes), I still see kids (and adults) buying the Goosebumps series. My little cousin loves them, and my high school students swear by the series in their literacy narratives. There's no denying the staying power of an author across so many generations, and R.L. Stine is the prince of horror (sorry, but I have crown Stephen King as, well, king).

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Paper Towns Casting News: Ben, Lacey, and Radar


The film adaptation of John Green's Paper Towns has just added three new cast members, according to The Wrap.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Can't Look Away by Donna Cooner



Release Date: August 26, 2014
Publisher: Point-Scholastic
Arc: Scholastic


Today's teen girl is obsessed with two things: beauty and social media. The prevalence of beauty blogs and vlogs is not only a celebration of confidence but also of a lack thereof. Scroll down to any comment below a video, and you will see encouraging comments and cyberbullying. For sixteen year old Torrey, her YouTube vlog is her life, and it cost her sister's. 

Thursday, October 2, 2014

New Rebellion Posters from The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part I

The Hunger Games Explorer has released seven new rebellion posters for the film set to hit theaters on November 21st.

Hit the jump for more photos.

Yolo by Lauren Myracle


Release Date: August 26, 2014
Publisher: Harry N. Abrams
Arc: Abrams Books

We are only at the very beginning of a new school year, but already, seniors are preparing to graduate, leave high school behind, and begin a new life as a college freshman. Most here in South Carolina will stay close to home, but there are those few that will leave friends and family behind for a new start and a new identity. This is why the new book Yolo, a continuation of the Internet Girls series by Lauren Myracle, is so appropriate right now. 

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Kids Who Are Changing the World by Anne Jankeliowitch and Yann Arthus-Bertrand


Release Date: September 2, 2014

Publisher: Sourcebooks
Ages: 9-12
E-ARC: Netgalley

From Goodreads: 

"The inspiring stories of 45 young heroes who have made an impact on our planet.

Forty-five young people from around the world (including twelve from the U.S. and four from Canada) are doing something every day to make the world a better place. They discovered issues that concerned them and did something about it. With skills ranging from singing, drawing, and painting to fund-raising, public demonstrations, and events, they have fought climate change and pollution, and worked to protect animals and their natural habitats. This inspiring book also includes reference materials and suggestions on how readers can get involved."

Faces of the Dead by Suzanne Weyn


Release Date: August 26, 2014
Publisher: Scholastic
ARC: Scholastic

How cool would it be to have a friend who looks so much like you she could be your twin? In Suzanne Weyn's Faces of the Dead, Marie-Therese has that opportunity. She is the princess of France, the daughter of Marie Antoinette, and her chambermaid, Ernestine looks so much like Marie-Therese that many who work in the palace confuse them constantly.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Saturday, September 20, 2014

The Maze Runner (Film) Review


Release Date: September 19, 2014

I am not a film critic; in fact, I leave that to my husband who is (you can check out his website here or visit him on efilmcritic). However, there are those films that come along that are based off young adult books, which I do review, so I feel as though I can provide some commentary here, albeit pretty negative commentary.

Red Band Society Premiere Review

Season Premiere: September 17, 2014 on Fox


With the success of The Fault in our Stars in both print and film formats, it's an easy decision to premiere a show about teens with cancer. And if there's one thing about teenagers, they are stubborn, but in the case of Red Band Society, their obstinacy means survival.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

The (Almost) Perfect Guide to Imperfect Boys by Barbara Dee


Release Date: September 30, 2014
Publisher: Aladdin
E-Galley: Edelweiss

Middle school is perhaps the most awkward set of years in a person's lifetime. For girls, this is the age where boys are either still gross or becoming attractive. For Finley and Maya, boys are categorized three ways at Fulton Middle School: Croakers, Tadpoles, and Frogs.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

New Mockingjay Part I Images from The Hunger Games Exclusive

Cressida


Gale





The Maze Runner a Modern Day Lord of the Flies


There's no denying the power of a classic, and William Golding's 1954 Lord of the Flies is a timeless tale of boys being boys, before dystopias were a "thing." On an island with no possible rescue, Golding's boys have to learn how to govern themselves, and that is no easy task; in fact, Flies is a warning of what could happen when kids must create their own sense of justice. 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Disney Releases New Into the Woods Poster


Synopsis from IMDB:
A witch conspires to teach important lessons to various characters of popular children's stories including Little Red Riding Hood, Cinderella, Jack and the Beanstalk and Rapunzel.

A star-studded cast ranges from the indomitable Meryl Streep, to The Devil Wears Prada's Emily Blunt, to Pitch Perfect's Anna Kendrick, to Star Trek's Chris Pine, and last, but certainly not least, the chameleon Johnny Depp. Disney has a hit on its hands with this one!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Full Length Mockingjay Trailer Now Online

While some fans of The Hunger Games Series view Mockingjay as the weakest of the trilogy, it is definitely the most action packed and emotional. Lionsgate has now released the first full-length trailer of Mockingjay Part One which hits theaters on November 21st.


(Middle Grades) Superstars of History by Simon Basher and R.J. Grant


Release Date: August 26, 2014
Publisher: Scholastic
ISBN: 9789545680240
ARC: Netgalley

If we don't understand our history, we cannot prepare for our future. In Basher and Grant's new book, history is laid out in a clean, simple format with all of the important information children need to know. Heck, I could honestly see me using this with some of my lessons in my high school English class.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

(Children's) Bats at the Library by Brian Lies


Release Date: September 28, 2014
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
ISBN:9780544339200
ARC: HMHCO

Over the summer, I visited Austin, Texas, and every evening at dusk, people gather at a bridge near downtown to watch the bats fly out all at once. It is quite a spectacle, and among the ooos and ahhhs, you hear some children scream. Not the blood curdling, run-for-your-life scream, but the kind that is a mix of surprise and excitement. That is what Brian Lies brings with this book, a reprint of the 2010 edition.