Wednesday, July 20, 2016

#Review: If You Were Me and Lived In...Series: India/Italy/Greece/Portugal by Carole P. Roman #Multicultural #DiverseBooks #CarolePRomanBooks

I love the "If You Were Me and Lived In..." series of books by Carole P. Roman. I am privileged to have almost the entire collection from around the world. This conglomerate of a review is for four more books in the series: Italy, India, Greece, and Portugal. 

As with all of her books from this series, she follows a general format which includes: city capital, name for parents, names for children, money used,foods eaten, places to visit, school name, holidays, and glossary of terms in the back.

Check out below the summary for each and what I have to say about each of these award winning books. Each of these books are 5 star books to me.

Disclosure: I received these books in exchange for my open and honest opinion. The views expressed here are 100% my own and may differ from yours. ~M.M. aka Naila Moon

Let's travel to India! Land of bright colors and delicious spices, If You Were Me and Lived in...India, takes young readers on a road trip to learn about this interesting place. Children will learn how to say mommy and daddy, what type of currency is used, games that youngsters play and a lot of interesting facts about the beautiful land of India.

My review:
I am off to India, well, at least by book. I was very interested in this book because my Mom had a friend who was from India. She gave her two sari, one for Mom and one for me. We still have them this many years later. Also, Mother Teresa, my hero, lived there and took care of the people.

This time I find out that India is one of the second most populated countries in the world. I did not know that! In fact, I found out loads more that I did not know.
Of course, I learned the terms for Mom and Dad, where to go to school, and the favorite sport.

Even though I have take geography in college, I did not know about India's geographical nature of placement. How cool is that!

Join Carole P. Roman as she visits the Republic of Italy. Learn what it is like to live in Rome, see the famous architecture, celebrate a favorite holiday and discover popular names for both boys and girls. Be fascinated with it's diverse and rich history and colorful traditions. On the way, you might learn a word or two in Italian!

My review:
I was lucky enough to visit Italy in 2000. So, I thought it would be interesting to read this book about Italy from a kid's perspective.
I had to smile at the author's dedication where she thanks the pizza place for help. Pizza is so different tasting in Italy but good none-the-less. Of course, as with all of the author's books, she mentions different foods one might eat. There are a lot of them in this book.

One of the places that is mentioned in the book is the Coliseum, although I have seen it, I did not know the complete information about it, like it was built by three different emperors or that sometimes,it was flooded. I learn something every day!

I also found out there is an important holiday that comes up on August 15th but you will have to read the book to find out what that is.

This was a fun read for me and yes, I did learn a little more Italian!

 In If You Were Me and Lived in…Greece , early learners get a taste of what their life would be like if they lived in Greece while being introduced to the birthplace of democracy. This exciting visit to Greece also introduces the important concept of democracy to children and highlights some of the other cultural contributions that Greece has made to Western civilization.

My review:
Greece is a place that I have always thought would be an interesting place to visit. After all, this is where the Olympics started! IT is interesting to know why it started and of course that too, is in this book.

I have seen and listened to the composer Yani who is from Greece. He did a famous production there in one of the places mentioned in the book.

I have a friend who is from Greece (boy can she cook, I love Greek food!) Her grand-daughter calls her Ya-Ya which is the names the author tells about in the book. You would have to read the book to find out what Mom, Dad, and Grandpa are called!

In this book, like others, the author mentions foods to eat. Bring it on, I say!  

After reading this book, maybe I need to get a ticket and go visit.What a wonderful overview of the country and simple understanding of where our countries political system stems from.

 Carole P. Roman travels to beautiful Portugal. This pro active book invites children to think about Portugal's many wonders from the sunny Azores to the wide variety of food.

My review:
I think I would love to travel to Portugal. According to the book, it is located on the ocean, which I love, and right next to another country. Basically, Portugal was a  trade route, one of course I heard about in college but did not remember until I read this book.
The views also mentioned in the book speak to me! It says they are a natural paradise. Of course reading the book will tell you what they are.

I liked that some of the photos were juxtaposed alongside of the cartoon characters. That is really cool.

It was fun to learn words that you would say in the language to ones Mom and Dad. I know no Portuguese so, trying out the words was fun and having that glossary in the back makes it easier.

The book also mentioned a fun holiday that I would surely like to visit and enjoy. 

Overall, I liked this book and it is just one of the many places that would be great to see. Heck, I would probably take the book with me just to compare!

Where to find the author:


Tuesday, July 19, 2016


It's Summer time! We want to welcome you to the July 2016  Kid Lit Blog Hop. This exciting, monthly hop, is where we develop an engaged group of people who love everything that has to do with children's literature. Everyone is welcome to join us: bloggers, authors, publicist, and publishers!

NEW THIS MONTH: The Kid Lit Blog Hopper Facebook fan page. This page will have all the news and information related to the hop plus ongoing posts, giveaways, news articles, etc. related to Kid's Lit. Check it out and of course, please like the page.

So for our hop, simply make a post related to Children’s literature and add it to the linky. (Please make sure to add your direct post only) If you are an author, feel free just to link to your blog.

Once you are done, then hop around to visit others. Please follow the co-host and visit at least the two people above your link. Please leave a comment when you do visit, we all like those.

Also, it would be appreciated if you grab the Kid Lit Blog Hop Badge and display it on your blog and/or your post.

We would also be grateful if you tweet and/or posted on Facebook about the blog hop. Let’s grow this wonderful community.

Our next hop will be August 17, 2016.  The hostess will be around to see you. Happy Hopping!

Reading Authors, Hostess

Julie Grasso


Cheryl Carpinello

Pragmatic Mom

The Logonauts

Spark and Pook

Hits and Misses

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

#Review: Cat Diaries: Secret Writings of the MEOW Society by Betsy Byars/ Betsy Duffey/ Laurie Myers & Illustrator Erik Brooks

At the annual gathering of the MEOW society, cats of all kinds convene to share their stories and those of their ancestors. Chico, the smallest cat in the world, recounts stopping a crime. The Pirate Cat tells of the fateful day when he discovered a treasure while hunting for mice. And Georgio shares his delectable―and sometimes surprising―recipes.

My review:
I decided to read Cat Diaries because well, I am a cat lover. I thought the idea of cat's having a diary in the first place sounded rather cute. The premise for children would be funny or so I thought.

Some of the stories were cute and I appreciated the humor in them but most were so-so. Also, I simply could not figure out why the book started with this big convention and then nothing but the reading of the stories by the various cats. It seemed there should have been more action or something. That was a bit disappointing.

However, one thing I did like in the book was near the end. Even though the book is targeted for 2-5 year olds, this seemed something that should have been for the older kids and even adults reading. Essentially, it called for everyone to keep writing their own stories so they are heard and known. After all, MEOW stands for "Memories Expressed in Our Writing", when we write things down, we are creating those memories to share with others about us. That makes me smile.

Overall, not a bad book and I do think young kids would like hearing the stories but it certainly is not for the youngest to read. This is not a picture book and the ages should be adjusted to an emerging reader.

3 stars.

Disclosure: I picked up a copy of this book from my local library. The views expressed here are 100% my own and may differ from yours. ~M.M. aka Naila Moon

Where to find the authors:

Monday, July 11, 2016

#Review: Sam's Top Secret Journal: Book1-We Spy by Dr. Sean Adelman #Middlegrade #DiverseBooks

Join Sam as she embarks on her first big adventure in this middle-grade mystery full of fun, suspense...and just the right amount of spying! Sam is a middle school girl living a normal life-except when she is occasionally bullied for the differences kids perceive in her. Sam has Down syndrome. See how she and her brother John work together to find some stolen money, help a new friend and escape real danger in this exciting adventure!

My review:
This book is targeted for middle grade. Sam is a young teen and middle child. She also has Down's Syndrome. Although she may have to do things at a slower pace, Sam is portrayed as strong, friendly, caring, helpful, and responsible. I love her strong character! 
She and her younger brother set out to capture a thief that has been stealing from several places. In addition, she befriends a man with a brain injury. I cannot reveal the results of all of these adventures because of course, that would ruin the book. 

This book is written in a quarter journal form (Sam's) and the rest mostly in narrative. Although there are a lot of "journal" books out there, this one is worth the read. This is a refreshing take on some one who is differently capable. Again, I love it! Sam is my hero in so many ways! This book is also a series of which I have three more books. I recommend them and get them in the hands of kids! 4 stars!

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for my open and honest opinion. The views expressed here are 100% my own and may differ from yours. ~MM aka Naila Moon

Where to find the author:


#Review: Uh-Oh! by Robert Fulghum #humor #AdultBooks

"Uh-oh" is more than a momentary reaction to small problems. "Uh-oh" is an attitude -- a perspective on the universe. 

My review:
In this funny narrative, the author speaks candidly about everything from eating late night, made up food concoctions to a mysterious secretary he had which as it turns out, is a figment of his imagination. Each tale he tells throughout the book is wildly colorful and almost too good to be true but in truth, it is. He tells his stories so funny that I could hardly keep from busting out laughing. To me what made his stories even funnier, other than that they were true, is he tells them also from the side of his profession which happens to be not just author, but minister! My mother being a minister makes this all the more hilarious. I can just picture some of the people, like the bride with the hiccups! This was a fun read that I read in 1 1/2 days! I give it 5 stars and want to read more from this author. Disclosure: I picked up a copy of this book for my own collections. The views here are 100% my own and may differ from yours. ~M.M. aka Naila Moon

Where to find the author:


Saturday, July 9, 2016

#Review: Stories I Only Tell My Friends by Rob Lowe #Memoir #Autobiography #AdultBooks

My review:
This personal memoir from actor Rob Lowe starts out with him as a nobody in Ohio but a passion for acting. His family is dysfunctional and plays a part for his psyche the majority of his life, it also pushes him to greatness.

He will become friends and almost second family to Martin Sheen and his sons. He will meet and date many Hollywood stars and elite but who were unknown at the time. His career will span with great movies and many flops and will culminate with his tenure on the "West Wing."

He writes candidly about his love affairs and his pending alcoholism that will land him in a treatment center in Arizona. This he does with great care to make the reader understand he took both very seriously and almost lost.

He goes on to write about his wife whom he almost lost too but at the end had been married over 20 years through thick and thin. He also writes about his boys and chatting to the then, President Bill Clinton, about fatherhood.

His life has been an amazing run and at the time of publication it seemed that he was just getting started, loving life, family, and newfound business.

All of it made me smile as I read. Some of it was astonishing but in some ways not too surprising considering what I generally hear of the Hollywood scene. For Rob Lowe, it was amazing and I without a doubt in my mind, we the viewing audience will see him again, probably older and much wiser than he was as a teen boy breaking into the business.

I loved his book and highly recommend it! 5 stars!

Disclosure: I picked up a copy of this book to read from my local library. The views expressed here are 100% my own and may differ from yours. ~M.M. aka Naila Moon

Where to find the author:


Friday, July 8, 2016