First off, any aspiring children’s book authors can kick themselves for not thinking about this book’s title before now. Secondly, Twinkle Twinkle Little Car by Kat Dopirak with illustrations by Mary Peterson is as cute and engaging as one hoped its fabulous title implies. It connects all of the dots required to make an entertaining children’s picture book does it as effectively as any sales person you’ve encountered.

The classic sales adage goes, first you tell people what you’ll be selling them, and then you sell it to them. In this case, the underlying ‘need’ is for small children to go to sleep. Granted the title, Twinkle, Twinkle Little Car implies sleep; but the journey that the car goes on, as well as, that of your targeted reading audience should be far sleepier.

Twinkle twinkle, twinkle twinkle little car, childrens book car, kate dopirak, mary Peterson, Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Car is as cute and wonderful as one would expect from a book whose title makes you smile at its mention.

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Heed the warning on the back of Speed of Life, but take it with a grain of salt. The warning says that its story is sad, talks about death and loss; but then references cat videos, kissing and moving on. All of which are true about Speed of Life, a middle school book that isn’t as heavy as you might think and deftly handles real world emotions that kids encounter.

Sofia is a 14 year old kid who is having a rough year. Her mother died eight months ago and she’s unable to move on from that fact. She has friends, her father is there for her and she regularly reads advice columns about grief, but it’s difficult. Plus, she’s 14, there are considerable changes happening internally and physically. Speed of Life isn’t as down or serious as its liner notes might lead one to think, but it does offer a real-world glimpse into a serious and real backstory

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All ages comics for February 14

February 12, 2018

Issue #7 is out this week in this very consistent comic book series that manages to bring the Force, as well as a variety of Star Wars characters to a young audience. In theory any age will enjoy Star Wars Adventures. However, ages 12 and younger will enjoy it the most and that’s only because ages older than that will skew up to Marvel Comics story lines. The art in Star Wars Adventures is parallel to Star Wars: Rebels, but there is enough action to maintain older audiences, humor for the younger ones and accessible art for all ages to appreciate.

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Win 4 tickets to Monster Jam in Atlanta

February 9, 2018

Monster Jam really is incredibly family friendly. Hint: go early so that you can walk the field area. Everyone will be fascinated by the size, scope and detail that go into these vehicles. Kids can sit inside the wheels of the monster trucks, touch the wheels and more. Some of the drivers will also be down there to sign autographs, take photos and meet the fans.

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The Ambrose Deception is middle school, entertainment reading gold

February 8, 2018

For us the book tracks near The Book Scavenger, a series that has character of a similar, playful nature that also made it very fun to read.
The content in The Ambrose Deception will be OK for middle elementary school students, but some of the vocabulary will be too difficult for that age. Upper elementary students, if they are great readers, will be able to fully enjoy the book without tagging up for help from an older sibling or parent. The Ambrose Deception is by Emily Ecton and on the surface doesn’t leave much room for a sequel. However, the affable qualities of the characters in the book should make parents want to seek out more of Ecton’s work.

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All ages comics for February 7

February 6, 2018

Neither of our kids have seen Back to the Future. Both of them would be OK with the content, it’s just a matter of too many great 80’s films and not enough time. If they had-and could read at a higher level they would really want to read Back to the Future from IDW Publishing. The monthly series is great and blends science-fiction, action and humor in as well as the classic film. They’ll sometimes have nice mini-series that concentrate on certain characters and Time Train is one of them. Doc Brown has made a time train for his wife Clara and they’re visiting the 1939 World’s Fair. Not surprisingly, some other folks are aware of their presence and are up to no good. This has realistic art and a great story for those middle school readers who like time travel or have seen Back to the Future.

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Netflix and some streaming options for the flu and cold season

January 31, 2018

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory
This was the first film our 6YO saw during his flu binge marathon. My wife said that he was watching Willy Wonka and I hoped that it wasn’t the freaky, needless update called Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. It wasn’t and out son had discovered a true classic film that features one of the funniest and classiest stars to perform on the silver screen.
That got us talking about Gene Wilder and the charming, enigmatic performance he delivered in the film. Contrast that to the train wreck that was its money grab of a reboot and you’re in a different league of entertainment. Side note: if said train wreck is what you’re looking for that’s available on Netflix too.

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Hammy and Gerbee, Mummies at the Museum, a kids 1st graphic novel

January 28, 2018

Hammy and Gerbee are best friends, one’s a hamster and one’s a gerbil. The school year has just started and they’re relieved to find out that they’re in the same class. Unfortunately for them, Hanna and Anna, the twin girls who live in their neighborhood are too. They tease each other, make up stories, have spelling competitions and generally antagonize each other.
It’s because Anna wins the spelling competition that she gets to choose where the class goes for a field trip. She chooses the museum which is the scene for a pair of security guards who are planning on stealing something and elementary school hijinks with laughs and funny scares.

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