Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Game On

Game On
Max Flash: Mission 1
by Jonny Zucker
illustrated by Ned Woodman
Hardcover, 144 pages
Published November 1st 2013 by Darby Creek Publishing
I received a free e-galley via NetGalley.

As a double-jointed son of magicians it is only natural that Max becomes part of the act with his escape abilities. He is a little surprised when he finds out his parents have an underground headquarters where they act as secret agents for an even more top secret agency, the DFEA. Max is now being asked to become an agent as well and is ready to head out on his first mission. He gets to battle monsters, race cars and live in the virtual world of computer games (think Tron) as he hunts down a rogue bad guy from a new game. Armed with awesome gadgets and his own unique abilities Max is the perfect kid for the job. This is the first in an action-packed intermediate series that will entertain readers, particularly boys, in the 2nd grade on up. This will also be a great choice for older but reluctant readers. The black and white illustrations throughout are well-done and add a graphic novel feel to the story.

Super Schnoz and the Gates of Smell

Super Schnoz and the Gates of Smell
by Gary Urey
illustrated by Ethan Long
Hardcover, 156 pages
Published September 1st 2013 by Albert Whitman & Company
I received a free e-galley via NetGalley. I also received a free galley from the publisher via a giveaway.

Andy Whiffler has always stood out in a crowd. He has often been teased and ridiculed by his peers. All because he was born with a gigantic nose. Andy doesn't really mind, because thanks to his gigantic nose he has a fabulous sense of smell. He collects smells of all kinds, even those disgusting ones that no one else wants to be around. When his school, appropriately named James F. Durante Elementary School, is shut-down due to some kind of toxic spill, Andy and his friends form a super-team to find out what is really going on. Andy embraces his enormous honker and discovers it has the ability to make him fly. Now known as Super Schnoz, he goes where no other kid can go to get to the bottom of the icky smell. Oh yeah, he might do a little sneezing to battle the evil group of fiends that is trying to take over the world one polluted city at a time!

The Show Must Go On!

The Show Must Go On!
Three-Ring Rascals Book 1
by Kate Klise
illustrated by M. Sarah Klise
Hardcover, 160 pages
Published September 10th 2013 by Algonquin Young Readers 
I received a free e-galley via NetGalley

When Sir Sidney begins contemplating retirement from circus life he advertises for someone else to take his place. After interviewing numerous potential ringmasters he meets Mr. Barnabas Brambles who seems like the ideal candidate. As a test, Sir Sidney takes a week's vacation leaving Mr. Brambles in charge. He is given the circus schedule and specific instructions on how to care for Sir Sidney's beloved animals. Once he is on his own, Mr. Brambles starts doing things his own way which is a lot different from what he was told to do. Will Gert and Bert, the circus mice, be able to do anything to stop Mr. Bramble's greedy ways? This adorable new series by the sister team of Kate and Sarah Klise is sure to entertain readers in the 2nd grade on up!

Spit Feathers

Spit Feathers
The Lobster Chronicles #3
by Jessica Scott kerrin
Hardcover, 140 pages
Published August 1st 2013 by Kids Can Press 
I received a free e-galley via NetGalley
 
From Goodreads.com:
Ferguson is trying to help his grandfather figure out his legacy. His grandfather doesn't want to have any regrets, like his old friend McDermit, who famously caught a giant lobster but regretted not returning it to sea. So when another giant lobster is caught in their fishing community and put up for auction, Ferguson cooks up a plan with his grandfather to bid on the lobster and set it free. Will this be his grandfather's legacy or will the town's richest man ruin everything? Spit Feathers is the third book in The Lobster Chronicles, a trilogy about how life changes for three boys in a small coastal town when a giant lobster is caught. Each book describes the same events through a different boy's eyes, making for three suspenseful, believable stories and an engrossing reading experience.
 
My Review:
I have not read the first two - I actually thought they were about talking lobsters, from the covers and the title. For some reason I decided to read this one from NetGalley. I enjoyed it. A sweet story of a grandfather/grandson relationship and how it affects the boys daily life and friendships. This would be a good realistic fiction book for boys 2nd grade and up. 

Waluk

Waluk
by Emilio Ruiz
Illustrations by Ana Miralles
Hardcover, 52 pages
Published November 1st 2013 by Graphic Universe (first published January 1st 2013)  
I received a free e-galley via NetGalley

Waluk is a young polar bear cub who feels abandoned by his mother. He sets off on his own to find some food. Not knowing how nor being quite strong enough to hunt on his own he decides to steal bird eggs. Eventually he encounters a fellow loner who is on the other end of the lifespan. Manitok is an old bear who is getting thin and losing his teeth so he is no longer the best hunter. Together the two explore their dwindling habitat looking for food and encountering humans at various times. This graphic novel isn't about a cute and cuddly little polar bear - though he is cute. It is about polar bears trying to survive in a melting world where humans - both good and bad - are around every corner. The illustrations are gorgeous! Readers will learn a great deal about these creatures as they read the well-illustrated story.

Inhuman



Inhuman
by Kat Falls

ebook, 276 pages
Published September 24th 2013 by Scholastic, Inc. 
Received free e-galley via NetGalley
First off, fabulous cover! (Both of them, though the first is the one I saw on my kindle when I read the book). This book is perfect for today's teens (and adults) who love futuristic dystopian post-apocalyptic action! Kat Falls does a fabulous job of creating a world that brings to mind many other fictional worlds, but is all her own at the same time. Lane finds the East full of not just survivors and infecteds of the plague, but also strange creatures that are reminiscent of the infamous and macabre, Dr. Moreau. Seeking out her father becomes more than a personal quest as she gets to know the people who are living where she thought no humans could live. 

Saturday, March 22, 2014

A Bed for Fred

A Bed for Fred
by Lori Zoss
illustrated by Cheri Polk

Hardcover, 24 pages
Published November 16th 2013 by Hugo House Publishers
Fred has outgrown his lovely red bed. His dad wants to surprise him with a brand new big-dog bed. However, when Fred can't find his bed or his Dad, he grows worried and begins searching everywhere for them. His friends try to help him by showing him what they think of as good sleeping places - the cricket discovers a pile of leaves and the frog spies a log. Yet it is the wise old owl that helps Fred settle down and return home where his father is waiting with the surprise.
This is a cute, rhyming picture book about the big step from a baby bed to a big-kid bed. The illustrations are pleasant and the story fun. However, some of the rhymes seem a tad awkward and forced. Overall it gets the point across in a sweet way.

I received an e-galley via NetGalley.