Friday, December 23, 2011

"Heaven is for Real for Kids" Review

The next book I reviewed for Thomas Nelson’s blog review group, Book Sneeze, was “Heaven is for Real for Kids” as told by Colton Burpo to his parents, Todd and Sonja Burpo. I had heard of the popular book, “Heaven is for Real”, but had not read it. When the book came, I was very curious to read it, and wondered if it would be a good book for my toddler-age children or not. The book I received was a hardcover version with a dust jacket, and about 26 pages of content. The illustrations (by Wilson Ong) are beautiful! They look like watercolors, without defined edges, and are very pretty! After reading the story, I was very pleased with the content! Every page tells something different that Colton learned about Heaven or Jesus while he was there. Each description has an accompanying scripture, which I really liked! There are some questions at the end of the book that are things the author felt like children might be curious about after reading the book. Everything in this book seems to be very well thought out. I think children of all ages would enjoy this, and it is a good resource for learning what the Bible has to say about Heaven!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

"Just In Case You Ever Wonder" Review

The next book I reviewed for the Thomas Nelson book review group, Book Sneeze, was “Just In Case You Ever Wonder” by Max Lucado. This is a children’s book that came in a hardcover version with a book jacket. I had very high expectations for this book. My family owns several Max Lucado children’s books that we love. “Just In Case You Ever Wonder” has won awards, and I wanted to love it. I began reading the story to my 3 year old son as soon as we got the book in the mail. The first few pages were very meaningful and touching. I was excited to continue reading. Then I came to a page with the words, “When you see monsters in the shadows, call me.” The illustrations on this page, along with the words are not suitable (in my opinion) for babies and toddlers. My son commented on the ‘tree with a mean face’. I didn’t read that page to him, and I was disappointed that something like monsters (which we try to avoid ) were discussed. There are enough fearful things in the world that are real, without having to add things to our wonderful Christian books to scare children. I really like this book, with the exception on the page I have discussed.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

"Night Night Blessings" Review

The next book I reviewed for Thomas Nelson's book review site, Book Sneeze, was "Night Night Blessings" by Amy Parker. We already had another book that we really enjoy by Parker, so I had high expectations for this book! I like the structure of these books. They are laminated board books, with thinner pages than the traditional board book. They are wonderful for the earliest of readers, who are still prone to tear pages. The approximately 22 page book is the perfect length for most babies and toddlers. There are just enough words to captivate the listener! The storyline makes this an excellent read for a bed time story! Each page describes things that the child is thanking God for. (Favorite toys, sloppy dog kisses, bubble bath, and more) The illustrations (by Marijan Ramljak) are very sweet. They are whimsical, and appealing to children and parents alike! I like that this book focuses on gratitude and joy, and teaching children that having thankfulness as our last words of the day is a geat habit to start at a young age! I enjoyed this book so much that I plan to look for more books by Amy Parker. A wonderful book!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

"Thunder Dog" Review

The next book I reviewed for Thomas Nelson’s blogger review group was “Thunder Dog” by Michael Hingson . I didn’t know what to expect of this book, but it was an excellent read. The subtitle reads: The True Story of A Blind Man, His Guide Dog & the Triumph of Trust at Ground Zero. Although I have read a few accounts of the events that happened on September 11th, to hear this story of a person who lived the tragedy was eye-opening. Hingson does a wonderful job of mixing his account of September 11th with his past. He tells very detailed information about what happened to him on that day. He combines that with his history, information on being blind, meeting his wife, his schooling, and many other interesting facts. I love his positive, can-do attitude, and feel like he does an excellent job at opening the general public’s eyes to the world of a blind individual. He gives many examples of things that people do to try to cater to him, as a blind person, that he does not need or appreciate. His story of how he escaped such a tragedy is a true page turner. I highly recommend this book!

Monday, July 11, 2011

"Money Secrets of the Amish" Book Review

The next book I reviewed for the Thomas Nelson book review site, Book Sneeze, was “Money Secrets of the Amish: Finding True Abundance in Simplicity, Sharing, and Saving” by Lorilee Craker. I didn’t know what to expect from this book, but I think of myself as a frugal person, and enjoy reading new ideas about saving money. This book exceeded my expectations! It was full of ideas, and ways to change your thought process, rather than just tips on how to save money. Some examples of the chapter topics are Rethinking Gifts, Shopping Secondhand, Buying in Bulk, and Delayed Gratification. One of the main principles that the author learned from spending time with the Amish people was UWMW: Use it Up, Wear it Out, Make Do, or Do Without. This concept goes against what most Americans think, and how we live our daily lives. The book is a fairly light read, but in a good way. It has some great concepts, and will challenge its readers to think outside the box. I really enjoyed this book. I shared enough of the ideas with my husband, that he also read and enjoyed it! A refreshing book to remind us about simplicity!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Thank You, God, for Mommy Review

The next book I reviewed for Thomas Nelson’s book review group, Book Sneeze, was a children’s book. I am always very happy to be given the opportunity to receive a new children’s book, and this one did not disappoint. “Thank You, God, for Mommy” by Amy Parker is illustrated by Frank Endersby. This twenty page book has thick, laminated pages that are wonderful for younger readers. (or listeners!) The story is about two panda bears, a mommy and a child. The story tells all of the many ways that the child is thankful for the mommy bear: her smile, her patience, trust in God, her silliness, and her unconditional love. There are just enough words on each page to make it detailed and interesting, but not so many that a young toddler wouldn’t love to sit and listen to the book. The illustrations are very cute. They depict each word very well, and are really cute to see. I read this to my almost three year old son, and he really loved it! This would make a perfect Mother’s Day or birthday gift for a mom, from her child! I recommend this book, and I would purchase others by the same author.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Regret Free Parenting: Raise Good Kids and Know you're Doing it Right

The next book I reviewed for Thomas Nelson’s blog group, Book Sneeze, was Regret Free Parenting: Raise Good Kids and Know You’re Doing it Right by Catherine Hickem. When I received the book, I wasn’t sure if I was going to gain any new knowledge. There are many Christian parenting resources, several which I have read, and some of the information can get repetitive. After reading the first chapter, I could tell that this book had some very valuable teaching in it, and was going to be worth my time. Hickem makes several very important points that are laced throughout the entire book. One is that we, as parents, must be intentional in all that we do. She gives specific examples of how we can be intentional with our words, actions, and everything in our lives. Mixed in with the discussions on different topics are real-life examples. Hickem is a licensed psychotherapist who also has children herself. The examples given are relevant, and thought provoking. This book covers topics that will be of interest to parents with toddlers, all the way through the teenage years. I would recommend this book to any Christian parent (mother, especially) who wants to go a little bit deeper with your thinking about how to raise your children.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Read and Share: The Ultimate DVD Bible, Vol. 2

The next thing I reviewed for Thomas Nelson's blogger review group, Book Sneeze, was the "Read and Share: The Ultimate DVD Bible, Volume 2. I have seen the first volume of the Read and Share movies, and was already very happy with that. I was looking forward to getting this Bible, and the movies, and I knew my 2 year old son would be really excited. The Bible and DVD's did not disappoint! There are two DVD's, each with 45 minutes to an hour of playtime. They play the same stories that are in the Bible, in the same order. This is great for older kids who would like to follow along in their Bible as they watch the movies. The Bible is great also. There are some stories in there that are not typically in a children's Bible, and the wording is really good. It is detailed, but easy for children to comprehend. The only negative thing about this, and it's very minor, is that the DVD's come in little plastic sleeves on the inside and outside cover of the Bible. With a toddler or young child being the recipient of the Bible, this will not be a good holding place for the movies. Other than that, I think this is an excellent resource for the whole family to learn more about God's Word!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

"Save the Date" Review

The next book I reviewed for the Thomas Nelson blog review site, Book Sneeze, was “Save the Date” by Jenny B. Jones. I have read some of Jones’ other fiction, and I like her style of writing. I was looking forward to reading this book, and thought the cover made it seem like a good read. The book is a good length for a novel, 304 pages. It was long enough that you felt like the author could tell the full story, without being too long. The story centers around a woman who runs a non-profit organization for girls who have aged out of the foster care system. She has a fairly stable life, that is shaken by a turn of events that she did not expect. The building where she houses the girls is suddenly about to be sold, and one of her largest donors backs out. She is left trying to find a way to keep her girls together, and keep the one stable thing they have in their life. Then a former football player, now politician enters the scene with an interesting proposition. Pretend to be his girlfriend, then fiancĂ©e, in return for the cash she needs to save her non-profit. The book will leave you wondering what the outcome will be!