Categories
Children

Perfect Halloween book for the littles: Pug & Pig Trick or Treat by Sue Lowell Gallion

Pug & Pig Trick or Treat

Halloween night has come to Pug and Pig’s house, and the darling duo is sporting matching costumes. The costumes are cozy. They glow in the dark. And they have masks! There’s only one problem—Pug hates wearing his. So he decides to rip it up and stay home. But Halloween just isn’t any fun for Pig without Pug! Can Pug find a way to be a good friend and get back into the Halloween spirit?

Pug & Pig is the cuuuuutest friggin fraggin Halloween book this year! If you remember my review of the first Pug & Pig you’ll know how completely in love I am with this adorbs duo!

So if you have a reluctant Halloweenie at home, don’t try to push them into it. Find a way like Pug did, to enjoy the activities.

Swoooooon.

Categories
Children

In the wake of #Harvey, Irma, Katia, & Jose: Books about Hurricanes

Books about Hurricanes

There’s been so much devastation across the world by angry water: hurricanes, tsunamis, etc that I thought it might be interesting to examine a few books about hurricanes about people and animals who survived. We need some hope right now.

Zane and the Hurricane: A Story of Katrina by Rodman Philbrick

I’m totally adding this to my TBR list. It’s got diversity and heroism; two of my faves.

Zane Dupree is a charismatic 12-year-old boy of mixed race visiting a relative in New Orleans when Hurricane Katrina hits. Unexpectedly separated from all family, Zane and his dog experience the terror of Katrina’s wind, rain, and horrific flooding. Facing death, they are rescued from an attic air vent by a kind, elderly musician and a scrappy young girl–both African American. The chaos that ensues as storm water drowns the city, shelter and food vanish, and police contribute to a dangerous, frightening atmosphere, creates a page-turning tale that completely engrosses the reader. Based on the facts of the worst hurricane disaster in U.S. history, Philbrick includes the lawlessness and lack of government support during the disaster as well as the generosity and courage of those who risked their lives and safety to help others.

 

Hurricane Katrina, 2005 (I Survived #3) by Lauren Tarshis

You know how much I love the I Survived series, right? Current events for tweens. And diversity!

Barry’s family tries to evacuate before Hurricane Katrina hits their home in New Orleans. But when Barry’s little sister gets terribly sick, they’re forced to stay home and wait out the storm.

At first, Katrina doesn’t seem to be as bad as predicted. But overnight the levees break, and Barry’s world is literally torn apart. He’s swept away by the floodwaters, away from his family. Can he survive the storm of the century — alone?

Hurricanes! by Gail Gibbons

Here’s a bit of nonfiction for the littles.

Imagine a force that can toss boats around like toys, wash away bridges, and create waves as high as eighteen feet. With fierce winds and torrential rains, hurricanes can do all of these things. They can cause tremendous damage and even change the shape of a shoreline. For centuries people did not know when a hurricane was coming. But now we have new methods to predict when and where these storms will occur. Young readers will learn how hurricanes are formed, how they are named and classified, and what to do if a dangerous storm is on the way.

Mission Hurricane (The 39 Clues: Doublecross #3) by Jenny Goebel

Here’s a great middle grade series that has an online component. Clues!

Thirteen-year-old Dan Cahill and his older sister, Amy, know that a disaster is about to strike the world. They know they are the only ones who can stop it, and they know they may already be too late. The person behind the disaster is their own relative, a man who calls himself the Outcast. He’s already recreated two of history’s worst disasters, and is only biding his time before he strikes again.

The clues that the Cahill kids have gathered suggests that the Outcast’s latest disaster is modeled after Hurricane Katrina. But what city will he target? And how can anyone conjure up a hurricane? Dan and Amy have no answers and very little time to find them. All they can count on is a tidal wave of trouble coming, and only them to stand in its way.

The Magic School Bus Inside a Hurricane(The Magic School Bus #7)

by Joanna Cole, Bruce Degen

It’s Ms Frizzle. Need I saw more?

Count on Ms. Frizzle to teach anything but an ordinary lesson on meteorology. Flying through the clouds in the Magic School Bus, Ms. Frizzle’s class experiences a hurricane-and even a tornado-firsthand. During their thrilling ride through the sky, Arnold gets lost! Will the Friz be able to save the day this time?

Two Bobbies: A True Story of Hurricane Katrina, Friendship, and Survival by Kirby Larson, Jean Cassels, Mary Nethery

Because awwwwwwww.

Bobbi and Bob Cat are the best of friends. When their hometown of New Orleans was struck by Hurricane Katrina, many lost everything. But not Bobbi and Bob Cat—they still had each other. Only by staying together could they survive. This is the story of their remarkable friendship.

Although a very very brief list, take comfort and be inspired by regular people who became heroes and survived hurricanes.

Categories
Diversity Reading Challenge

Rumplepimple by Suzanne DeWitt Hall, illustrated by Kevin Scott Gierman = Superdoggo!

Rumplepimple

 

Rumplepimple is a silly name for a pooch who takes care of some serious business. To be sure, his moms (he has two) think he’s a naughty little terrier. But when you look at the situation from Rumplepimple’s eyes you’ll see that he is just trying to help.

Rumplepimple gets loose and runs inside a grocery store because he hears a child crying for help. Turns out the little tyke is being tormented by her older brother and Rumplepimple swoops in, grabs the little girl’s blanked from the brother and returns it to the little girl. Now THAT’s a good doggo! No matter that he doesn’t belong in the grocery store, or that he peed on the boy’s shoes. Rumplepimple is just doing what a good dog should: caring for humans.

I love Rumplepimple and I love the easy way the diversity of the two moms is a non issue in the book. There’s no grand announcement of the LGBTQ life; they just happened to be two women who have a rambunctious terrier and a bossy chicken. I DEF want to see more Rumplepimple save the day! I almost forgot to mention that the illustrations are gloriously inclusive of people of color. Bravo!

Categories
Books

Paws of Courage by Nancy Furstinger

There are many ways to show courage.
Here’s how dogs do it:
Paws of Courage by Nancy Furstinger

Paws of Courage

 

Here’s a great kids book: it’s a book about war dogs and working dogs. But here’s the question: is there anything better than photos of dogs in uniforms? Well besides being awfully cute, these furry friends in uniform are brave. Paws of Courage is a great book that showcases the many types of four legged heroes who help our military over the past century. From Sgt Stubby to Xanto, dogs have performed numerous jobs helping our men and women in uniform. The greatest bit about these dogs is that when they retire, they can get adopted! Usually their handlers adopt them and reward them with love and good dog treats as a way of thanking the pooches for protecting them. Sometimes, regular people get to adopt a retired military working dog.

Can you imagine the stories old Fido could tell about finding explosives in a mine field or sniffing luggage at the airport for hidden items? Or what about the dog who can hear an enemy plane approaching and alert her military friends so they can get to safety?

I’ve always been a fan dogs, but military working dogs have become my all time favorite, after I heard about all the work they did during September 11th. If you have a friend who likes dogs or the military, this book will win their heart too. Also? Information in the back to find out about retired service dogs for sale.  Maybe you can get one!

Here’s a great quote from the book:

 

The Final Woof

He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart. You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion.

~Anonymous

 

 

 

Categories
Books

Hyperbole and a Half is Some Kind of Fun!

Hyperbole and a Half

Here’s my video review:

Categories
Books

The Dogs of Christmas by W. Bruce Cameron

dogschristmas

Need more gift ideas? Head over to the Facebook page for more suggestions…

Categories
Books Children

Why Christopher Holt wrote The Last Dogs Series for Me. An Interview!

HEY HEY HEY Welcome Back! If you missed something, check out my review of The Last Dogs series.
baileylastdogs2
As promised, Bailey and I bring you our exclusive interview with Christopher Holt, author of The Last Dogs series, which Bailey and I enjoyed immensely.
UNCONVENTIONAL LIBRARIAN:  Welcome to our interview! Let’s get started. Do you drink coffee?
CHRISTOPHER HOLT: Most definitely! On those late nights, a writer needs a little something to keep his brain buzzing with new ideas! But, of course, it needs a little cream and sugar.
UL: Right. If as in cream you mean soy or almond milk, I understand.  Do you like donuts or cookies? Do you dunk?
CH: Personally, I find it appalling that someone could dislike donuts OR cookies.   I’m a fan of anything sweet. I previously worked as a gumball salesman, and even had a dog named Cupcake! As for dunking, I reserve that privilege for Oreos only (it’s not right to eat them any other way).
UL: We’ll agree to disagree about the Oreas, but you had me at Cupcake. But down to business.  How did the series get started?
CH: Growing up, I was always surrounded by pets. My house was filled with dogs…Salt, Pepper, Cupcake, Ariel, Shadow, Brandy, Sir Edmund Spunk, Showtime Double Feature—I loved them all, and use my memories of them when I write about the four-footed heroes of The Last Dogs. I’ve also always been a lover of a good adventure! As a kid I read series such as C.S. Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia and anything written by Bruce Coville. It was the collision of my love of animals, adventures, and writing that created The Last Dogs series.
UL: Ah yes, who doesn’t love adventures or dogs?  What else have you written?
CH: I am immersed in the world of The Last Dogs! The second novel, Dark Waters, is out in stores, and the third book—The Long Road—comes out in November!
UL: Thank you for writing the series just for me. If you could have any superpower what would it be?
CH: Great question! Just like the Praxis procedure gave Madame Curie and other characters in The Last Dogs the ability to understand human language, I’d love the ability to understand animal speech…even if only for a little while. I think it would be a blast to be able to talk with animals for an entire day. I’m sure they’d have a lot to say, just like Max, Rocky, Gizmo, and the rest of The Last Dogs.
UL: I would LOVE that too!  What makes you happy?
CH: I am truly happiest when I get to spend time with the people in my life who matter most. Family and the power of friendship are very important and should never be taken for granted. If anything, I’d like my readers to take that away from each of The Last Dogs books. Max will do whatever he needs to do to find his missing family, but he is only able to succeed with the help of his friends, Rocky and Gizmo. Love and friendship can get you through even the toughest of situations.
UL: Gizmo is so full of spitfire for a little dog. I LOVE her! Wrapping up now, anything else you want to tell us?
CH: It’s always great to hear stories about families and the adventures they have with their pets! Not only does it inspire me (just as my own family and pets do), but it also puts a smile on my face. If readers have any stories or photos they’d like to share, they can contact me through tumblr at thelastdogs.tumblr.com! You can also find me on Facebook (Christopher Holt), on Twitter (@TheLastDogs), at christopherholtbooks [at] gmail.com, and online at www.thelastdogs.com.
Hey friends you’ve GOT to check out the tumblr.  The pics of people and their dogs, esp the kiddies are adorbs!
Categories
Books Children

The Last Dogs Series by Christopher Holt

If you know anything about me you know I LOVE dogs.  I especially love books with talking dogs.  Who hasn’t ever looked into their beloved pooch’s eyes and wondered what they were thinking?  I can tell by looking at my own Bailey that he loves me but I would love to hear his thoughts.

I’m sure that Christopher Holt heard my plea and that’s why he wrote The Last Dogs series for me.

The Last Dogs Unconventional Librarian

And oh how I have enjoyed the series.  Here’s a bit about it:

When all the humans in his world disappear, Max, a yellow Labrador Retriever, begins the search for his family. He knows that if he can just find Madame Curie, a wise, old black Lab, she’ll be able to help. Madame had a premonition of astonishing events to come — she might know where Max’s family is.

But Max can’t make the journey alone. Joined by friends Rocky and Gizmo, Max sets off to find Madame. Along the way, the trio must face a pack of angry wolves, forage for food in a land where kibble is akin to gold, befriend a house full of cats, and outsmart a gang of subway rats. Ultimately, they’ll have to escape from the biggest threat of all: the Corporation, a “perfect” society for dogs and by dogs, where nothing is quite as it seems.

Ok so now you know the premise.  What would happen if all the people disappeared? It makes me think of all the natural disasters that have happened, specifically, Hurricane Katrina, in which people had to leave their pets behind. How devastating that must have been for all parties involved.  I’m certain my Bailey would look for me if I went missing.  Now you can hear it straight from the dogs.

To be sure, you should probably read the series in order. I didn’t but Holt did a great job of catching me up on what I’d missed.  This catch up feature is perfect for kids who come to the story later but don’t want to put the book down and get book 1.  It is so great to hear the dogs talk as they go on these adventures.  The three main characters Max, Gizmo, and Rocky are hysterical.  Rocky, the dachshund, constantly talks about food.  In The Last Dogs: Dark Waters, Rocky dreams of chasing kibble.  His conversation with the kibble is a riot: his little legs are moving and he talks in his sleep saying “Come back here, kibble…I’m-a-getchoo. I’m gonna eat you up!”  How funny is that? I giggled for hours.

There are many characters in the series to delight and frustrate the reader.  If you have a child who likes talking animals this is the series for them.   give this series 4 paws!

Unconventional Librarian 4paws

 

Can’t get enough of The Last Dogs? Stay tuned to this channel for an exclusive interview with Christopher Holt!

 

 

Categories
Books Young Adult

The Shapeshifters Library by Amber Polo

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Love dogs?  Love books?  Love libraries? Hate Book-burning werewolves?
Love dogs?  Love books?  Love libraries? Hate Book-burning werewolves?

Welcome to the Shipsfeather, Ohio, where an ancient race of dog-shifters struggle, under an ordinary public library, to save the knowledge of the world from book-burning werewolves.

Once long ago the Shipsfeather Academy was a training ground for an ancient race of dog-shifters whose mission was to protect the world’s knowledge. A powerful curse sealed these librarians in the basement of their building and gave the control of the town to a pack of book-burning werewolves.
Librarian Liberty Cutter watches in horror as the town’s public library goes up in flames and plans to re-establish the library in the abandoned Shipsfeather Academy building. Chronus, the Old English Sheepdog headmaster of the academy and leader of the dog-shifters, knows he must make some changes to continue to keep his pack safe. But even if he could persuade Liberty to believe in a talking sheepdog, how far can she be trusted? And will she ever be able to care for him as a man. He has to try, because Liberty Cutter and her staff of zany librarians may hold the key to the dog-shifters’ freedom…and the future of the town.

Check out my video review:

Global power? hmmmmm yes…..

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Books information

#AtoZChallenge: T is for Team World Book Night

T is for Team World Book Night

and I’m on the team to pass out books tonight

and

I’m giving out

Because of Winn Dixie

Unconventional Librarian Because of Winn Dixie

which was also featured on B day!