Review: Baseball Saved Us by Ken Mochizuki, Illustrated by Dom Lee

Book Information:

Baseball Saved Us by Ken Mochizuki
Illustrated by Dom Lee
Lee and Low Books Inc.
Published in 1993
ISBN 1880000199
32 Pages

Series Information:

None

Review/Rating:

4 out of 5

4/5

Ease of Reading Text: 5 out of 5
Illustrations: 3 out of 5
Plot: 5 out of 5

During World War II, a young Japanese American boy and his family are forced to live in internment camps. Trying to get by in these camps, everyone decides they need something different to do — baseball.

This is a pretty simple book, but it still delivers a small message. :) I love how the author was able to write it in a child’s point of view of how a Japanese Internment Camp was like during this time period. Another thing I like is how different of a plot it is compared to other World War II fiction books — most of the ones I see are about concentration camps or going into hiding in Europe during the war — so it is a nice change. Even in my high school class, I don’t remember going over it that much. :S The descriptions and everything else are very well done, and I was able to feel the emotion of the child who was sent to the camp. ;)

For the text, I was able to see/read the text just fine since it was black text on white paper. As for the illustrations, I don’t really like the style of them, but they do deliver the emotion of the characters better than if it were a style I was used to. :)

Overall, it is a pretty good book, but I can’t really figure out why someone would banned/challenged. Oh, I guess it was banned/challenged because of the slight racism and history America would love to keep hidden from people. Though, I do wish there were fiction books about this period in time. :P

Where I Got It:

Checked out from the library.

Challenges Apart Of:

Goodreads 2012
Banned/Challenged No Limit

Other Reviews/Author Site:

Ken Mochizuki
Dom Lee
Goodreads

Places to Buy From:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

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Review: The Great Fuzz Frenzy by Susan Stevens Crummel and Janet Stevens, Illustrated by Janet Stevens

%TheGreatFuzzFrenzy

Book Information:

The Great Fuzz Frenzy by Susan Stevens Crummel and Janet Stevens
Illustrated by Janet Stevens
Harcourt, Inc.
Published in 2005
ISBN 0152046267
46 Pages

Series Information:

Not a series.

Review/Rating:

4 out of 5

Ease of Reading Text: 4 out of 5
Illustrations: 4 out of 5
Plot: 5 out of 5

When Violet drops her ball down a prairie dog hole, the prairie dogs are confuses at first. However, after the confusion, what kind of things will they do with the ball?

Based on a true story of when Janet Stevens’ dog, Violet, drops a tennis ball down a prairie dog hole. That’s when the two authors started wondering what the prairie dogs thought about the strange object, and, what they did with it. I found it interesting how both of the authors created a story over something as simple as that. It was pretty amusing and interesting what they came up with. The prairie dogs find several uses for it – most of those uses are interesting and funny. :D

Also, even though the drawings were mostly made with dark colors, they were kind of cute, but I still would have liked some brighter colors in the pictures. Anyways, the ease of seeing/reading the text was a little hard because the text was kind of small and it was also against a dark background.

Overall, I liked how funny, amusing, and creative the book was. There is also a little lesson that you shouldn’t fight over things don’t really need and fight over it between family and/or friends. So, I also enjoyed that little lesson. It is a pretty good and amusing read for your children, so go ahead and read it to them. :)

Where I Got It:

Checked out from the library.

Challenges Apart Of:

Goodreads 2011

Re-Reading:

Not planning to re-read.

Other Reviews/Author Site:

$New_Bullet Susan Stevens Crummel
$New_Bullet Janet Stevens
$New_Bullet Goodreads
$New_Bullet Library Thing
$New_Bullet A Thousand New Books

Places to Buy From:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Review: Help Me, Mr.Mutt! by Susan Stevens Crummel and Janet Stevens, Illustrated by Janet Stevens

%HelpMeMrMutt

Book Information:

Help Me, Mr. Mutt! by Stevens Crummel and Janet Stevens
Illustrated by Janet Stevens
Harcourt, Inc.
Published in 2008
ISBN 9780152046286
56 Pages

Series Information:

Not a series.

Review/Rating:

2 out of 5

Ease of Reading Text: 5 out of 5
Illustrations: 2 out of 5
Plot: 1 out of 5

Dogs with everyday people (and cat) problems write to Mr. Mutt for advice.

What can I say about this book? It was very… err… boring. :( The plot would have been interesting if there was a little bit more to it. I like the idea using dogs to write to another dog for the advice, but my attention was drawn more to the cat, The Queen. The parts with the cat and where she cuts in are pretty much the only parts I like. Other than that, I was mostly kind of bored reading the advice letters. Advice columns might be good for newspapers, but not for children’s books.

Anyways, the illustrations didn’t draw my attention like the other books by this illustrator. The only good part was that it was all right reading/seeing the text because it was easy to see/read.

Overall, I didn’t find the book enjoyable or funny. So, basically, read this book at your own risk.

Where I Got It:

Checked out from the library.

Challenges Apart Of:

Goodreads 2011

Re-Reading:

Not planning to re-read.

Other Reviews/Author Site:

$New_Bullet Susan Stevens Crummel
$New_Bullet Janet Stevens
$New_Bullet Goodreads
$New_Bullet Library Thing
$New_Bullet Young Readers

Places to Buy From:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Review: The Little Red Pen by Susan Stevens Crummel, Illustrated by Janet Stevens

%TheLittleRedPen

Book Information:

The Little Red Pen by Stevens Crummel
Illustrated by Janet Stevens
Harcourt Children’s Books
Published in 2011
ISBN 9780152064327
56 Pages

Series Information:

Not a series.

Review/Rating:

4 out of 5

Ease of Reading Text: 3 out of 5
Illustrations: 5 out of 5
Plot: 4 out of 5

The Little Red Pen always does all the work while all her helpers do nothing. However, when the Little Red Pen disappears, will they be able to finish grading the papers before the students come back to school?

The plot is kind of normal for a children’s book, but I liked the humor and characters in it. Also, I liked how they used office supplies in a school to tell the story, and it made the story much more amusing. :)

The illustrations were pretty good, but the colors made it kind of hard to see/read the text. Also, the type of font they used and the color of it made it even more even difficult to see/read.

All in all, it is a pretty good book, but I wish it had a little something more to the plot.

Where I Got It:

Bought from my library, and I still own a copy.

Challenges Apart Of:

Goodreads 2011

Re-Reading:

Not planning to re-read.

Other Reviews/Author Site:

$New_Bullet Susan Stevens Crummel
$New_Bullet Janet Stevens
$New_Bullet Goodreads
$New_Bullet Library Thing
$New_Bullet Buckeye Bookworm

Places to Buy From:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Review: Cook-A-Doodle-Doo! by Susan Stevens Crummel, Illustrated by Janet Stevens

%CookaDoodleDooo

Book Information:

Cook-A-Doodle-Doo! by Stevens Crummel
Illustrated by Janet Stevens
Voyager Books
Published in 1999
ISBN 9780152056582
48 Pages

Series Information:

Retelling and/or Sequel to The Little Red Hen.
Not a series.

Review/Rating:

5 out of 5

Ease of Reading Text: 5 out of 5
Illustrations: 5 out of 5
Plot: 5 out of 5

The Rooster is tired of eating the same thing every single day, so he gets the idea to be like his grandmother, the Little Red Hen, and cook something. However, will no one help him cook it?

Okay, I’m going to call this a sequel to The Little Red Hen, even though it really isn’t because it only mentions it only a little bit. Though, I guess it could also be considered a retelling. Oh, well, I’m going to call it a retelling/sequel. xD

Anyways, it has the same basic outline as The Little Red Hen, but it has a couple of differences. I’ll just let you read it, so you can find them out yourself. However, I think it has more comedy and humor than in The Little Red Hen. I also liked how there were cooking tips on the side of the story. I loved the twists the author put on the story, and the personalities of the characters. :)

The illustrations were kind of good since they reminded me of how they were like when I was a kid. It was also very easy to see/read the text. :D

Overall, I like this retelling/sequel of The Little Red Hen. Go ahead and go read it to your children.

Where I Got It:

Won in a drawing from my library, and I still own a copy.

Challenges Apart Of:

Goodreads 2011

Re-Reading:

Not planning to re-read.

Other Reviews/Author Site:

$New_Bullet Susan Stevens Crummel
$New_Bullet Janet Stevens
$New_Bullet Goodreads
$New_Bullet Library Thing
$New_Bullet Pied Piper Pics

Places to Buy From:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Review: The Three Bully Goats by Leslie Kimmelman, Illustrated by Will Terry

%TheThreeBullyGoats

Book Information:

The Three Bully Goats by Leslie Kimmelman
Illustrated by Will Terry
Picture Window Books
Published in 2011
ISBN 9781404861657
32 Pages

Series Information:

Not a series.

Review/Rating:

5 out of 5

Ease of Reading Text: 5 out of 5
Illustrations: 5 out of 5
Plot: 5 out of 5

Three goats, Gruff, Rugg, and Tuff, are nothing but bullies to everyone in the meadow. When they pass over the little ogre’s bridge, they ruin the peace on the other side of the meadow. However, the bullies will learn their lesson, when they pick on the wrong animal.

This book puts a very nice twist on the children’s classic, The Three Billy Goats Gruff. It still has the basic outline of the original, but the author changes the characters personality and even adds something to make it a little different from it. The author makes it so that the goats are the bad guys and the ogre is the good one. Even with some slight changes, it was still a nice and interesting take.

Also, I think the illustrations were more adorable than the original. :P They had a very soft and gentle feeling to them, and they were enjoyable to look at. It was also very easy to read/see the text.

Overall, the book is a very enjoyable read, so go ahead and read it to your children. :D

Where I Got It:

Checked out from the library.

Challenges Apart Of:

Goodreads 2011

Re-Reading:

Not planning to re-read.

Other Reviews/Author Site:

$New_Bullet Leslie Kimmelman
$New_Bullet Will Terry
$New_Bullet Goodreads
$New_Bullet Library Thing
$New_Bullet The QuickWitLitniks

Places to Buy From:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Review: Fergus and the Night Demon by Jim Murphy, Illustrated by John Manders

%FegusandtheNightDemon

Book Information:

Fergus and the Night Demon by Jim Murphy
Illustrated by John Manders
Clarion Books
Published in 2006
ISBN 9780618339556
32 Pages

Series Information:

Not a series.

Review/Rating:

5 out of 5

Ease of Reading Text: 5 out of 5
Illustrations: 5 out of 5
Plot: 5 out of 5

Fergus O’Mara is very clever, but it is too bad that he uses it to get out of work. On his way to go have fun in Skibbereen, he might discover that his cleverness can be put to better use when he meets up with the Night-Demon.

The plot is kind of like the usual legend/ghost story – someone needs to be taught a moral lesson, they go out and they meet spirits, and then they almost always learn their lesson. No matter how much this plot is used, it is always fun and enjoyable to read, and it also teaches children certain kind of lessons. I found the characters enjoyable for this kind of plot. I think everyone will be able to see a little bit of themselves in Fergus, and it’s always wonderful when authors are able to make characters like that.

I also enjoyed looking at the illustrations. They matched the story almost perfectly, and they were all so pretty to look at. It was also easy to read/see the text. :D

Overall, the story is a great read for children and for adults as well. I think your children will really enjoy this book.

Where I Got It:

Checked out from the library.

Challenges Apart Of:

Goodreads 2011

Re-Reading:

Not planning to re-read.

Other Reviews/Author Site:

$New_Bullet Jim Murphy
$New_Bullet John Manders
$New_Bullet Goodreads
$New_Bullet Library Thing
$New_Bullet Kinder Scares

Places to Buy From:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Review: Crabby Pants by Julie Gassman, Illustrated by Richard Watson

%CrabbyPants

Book Information:

Crabby Pants by Julie Gassman
Illustrated by Richard Watson
Picture Window Books
Published in 2011
ISBN 9781404861657
32 Pages

Series Information:

Not a series.

Review/Rating:

5 out of 5

Ease of Reading Text: 5 out of 5
Illustrations: 5 out of 5
Plot: 5 out of 5

Roger has a problem… He is always crabby. So one day, he gets an idea on how to get rid of his crabbiness.

This book is every cute and funny. Both the plot and characters kind of matches what you imagine how the book will be. I like how the author uses cats as the characters because cats generally have some kind of attitude – much like Roger. It was also very amusing at the ways Roger tries to get rid of his crabbiness. ;)

Anyways, the illustrations were very well done and very cute. I like how the art style matched the subject/theme and font of the book. Also, the fonts matched the feeling of the book very well. It was also very easy to read/see the text on the pages.

Overall, it was a very good book, and I think it will amuse you and your children. :D

Where I Got It:

Checked out from the library.

Challenges Apart Of:

Goodreads 2011

Re-Reading:

Not planning to re-read.

Other Reviews/Author Site:

$New_Bullet Julie Gassman
$New_Bullet Goodreads
$New_Bullet Library Thing
$New_Bullet Read It Again, Mom

Places to Buy From:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Review: Where Are You Going? To See My Friend! by Eric Carle and Kazuo Iwamura

%WhereAreYouGoingToSeeMyFriend

Book Information:

Where Are You Going? To See My Friend! by Eric Carle and Kazuo Iwamura
Illustrated by Eric Carle and Kazuo Iwamura
Orchard Books
Published in 2001
ISBN 0439416590
40 Pages

Series Information:

Not a series.

Review/Rating:

5 out of 5

Ease of Reading Text: 5 out of 5
Illustrations: 5 out of 5
Plot: 5 out of 5

Five animals and a child go on an adventure to go visit their friends.

This book is pretty much just a fun book with pretty much no plot. However, I like how they put Hiragana (どこへいくの?ともだちにあいに!) with romaji next to the Hiragana and English in it. To me, it was a very creative way for children to learn something new. Anyways, from the front of the book, it’s in English and drawn by Eric Carle. Then, for the Japanese version, you read it like you read manga (from the back of the book and then right to left). Then the illustrations in the back are from Kazuo Iwamura.

The illustrations are actually pretty good. The ones from Eric Carle are pretty average, and I didn’t like them that much. However, the illustrations by Kazuo Iwamura were very cutely drawn and looked great. I loved those illustrations more the ones from Eric Carle. Anyways, the text is pretty easy to read/see since it was black text on a white background.

Overall, it was a very good read and creative since it kind of introduces a new language for little kids.

Now a real quick guide on how to read the Hiragana:

  1. First, go to the back of the book and open it.
  2. Then it will look something like this here.
  3. Then you read it like this here.

Thanks to hika on how to separate the romaji and the short Japanese lesson. :D

Where I Got It:

Checked out from the library.

Challenges Apart Of:

Goodreads 2011

Re-Reading:

Not planning to re-read.

Other Reviews/Author Site:

$New_Bullet Eric Carle
$New_Bullet Kazuo Iwamura
$New_Bullet Goodreads
$New_Bullet Library Thing
$New_Bullet Sarah’s Book Log

Places to Buy From:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Review: The Book That Eats People by John Perry, Illustrated by Mark Fearing

%TheBookThatEatsPeople

Book Information:

The Book That Eats People by John Perry
Illustrated by Mark Fearing
Tricycle Press
Published in 2009
ISBN 9781582462684
38 Pages

Series Information:

Not a series.

Review/Rating:

5 out of 5

Ease of Reading Text: 5 out of 5
Illustrations: 5 out of 5
Plot: 5 out of 5

One day Sammy Ruskin checks out this very same book, and he soon discovers that this book has an appetite for – people. GULP. Will this book ever stop eating people? And will you be next?

This book is actually very cute and funny. It is kind of nice turn of events by saying a book that has an appetite for people, instead people who have an appetite for books. The plot, like most other childrens’ books, is very simple. However, it might scare some of the little children. Though, they might become engage in the book, but since I don’t have children, I wouldn’t really know. HEH. :X

Anyways, the illustrations were very well done, and let’s say it matches the feeling and plot of the book very well. Also, you can read/see the text very well against the background. Even though there are no life lessons in this book, the book’s illustrations and plot are just meant to make you laugh and smile. :D

It is a very good children’s book, and I would recommend it for anyone. Though, it might scare some of the younger kids. :P

Where I Got It:

Checked out from the library.

Challenges Apart Of:

Goodreads 2011

Re-Reading:

Not planning to re-read.

Other Reviews/Author Site:

$New_Bullet John Perry
$New_Bullet Mark Fearing
$New_Bullet Goodreads
$New_Bullet Library Thing
$New_Bullet Bookie Woogie

Places to Buy From:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble