Tag Archives: imagination

Book Review: When a Dragon Moves in – by Jodi Moore

 

 

 

 

 

Book: When a Dragon Moves In
Author: Jodi Moore
Illustrator: Howard McWilliam
Publisher: Flashlight Press 
Date: May 1, 2011
Genre: children's picture book; age 5-7; K-2
Pages: 32
Price: $16.95
My rating: a delightful story of imaginative play

When a Dragon Moves In is the first book of two – the second being When a Dragon Moves in Again which I reviewed HERE. The author, Jodi Moore, came up with the cutest personalities and storyline for children (and adults) to enjoy.

With his parents and older sister, a little boy spends an enjoyable day at the beach. He builds a perfect sand castle that turns out to be just right for a dragon to move into – and so begins a very imaginative day at the beach.

The dragon becomes his playmate – toasting his marshmallows, being his raft in the water, playing in the sand, scaring away bullies (when actually the reason they run is because his father is standing behind him). The boy is careful to hide his dragon for a while, but then decides it’s time to let his family know. Of course, they don’t believe him and have reasonable explanations for all his clues of the dragon’s existence.

Soon, to prove he’s real, “his dragon” starts doing things that get the little boy into trouble. His dad says it’s got to stop. The boy realizes he has a decision to make.

Children will understand the boy’s quandary, and will be amused with the wonderful ending of the story.

When a Dragon Moves In is such a delightful story. The illustrations by Howard McWilliam are absolutely fabulous. When a Dragon Moves In and When a Dragon Moves In Again are two books that are ‘must reads’ for your young readers – and the whole family.

You can find When a Dragon Moves In by Jodi Moore on my BUY THE BOOK page. I also post my reviews on Goodreads, and when available on Amazon.com, Amazon.ca, and Chapters.Indigo.

Your comments are greatly appreciated by authors, illustrators, and this blogger.

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂

 

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Book Review: When a DRAGON Moves in AGAIN – by Jodi Moore

 

 

 

 


Book: When a DRAGON Moves in AGAIN
Author: Jodi Moore
Illustrator: Howard McWilliam
Publisher: Flashlight Press
Date: September 1, 2015
Genre: children's picture book; K-2; age 5-7
Pages: 32
Price: $17.95
My rating: a delightfully fun story of a boy, his dragon, 
and somebody new 

 

Because I haven’t yet had opportunity to read When a Dragon Moves In by Jodi Moore, I am starting with her second book, When a DRAGON Moves in AGAIN. It is completely enjoyable without having to read the first book.

Let’s begin with the end pages which used to be simply plain, but that has changed for many books. These are gorgeous, so family focused. Take a peek.

Isn’t that delightful? Family photos are posted on a  bulletin board, including ones capturing the mischievous little boy making faces at the camera. The end pages at the back are different photos.

 

 

 

 

 

As we begin reading When a DRAGON Moves in AGAIN, and having not read the first book, we naturally assume the little boy has already fully developed his imaginary dragon friend. In this story, the boy and his dragon enter a new situation together.

One day the dad builds what his young son believes to be a castle. Of course, if you have a castle you have a place for your dragon. They bounce and play in it until  … the mom says that’s for the baby. Baby? His sister is hoping for a girl, she obviously feels she has enough brothers. 

For a young child, welcoming a new baby into the family is not always an easy transition. When the baby arrives, his big brother is okay with it until Baby cries a lot. He has to be entertained, but Dragon breaks things and makes a mess in the attempt. When Baby is sleeping Dragon wakes him up. It’s then that Dad decides they’ve had enough of dragons, but Big Brother wants Baby sent back. Dragon is not so sure about that.

The illustrations in When a DRAGON Moves in AGAIN are fabulous. Howard McWilliam has captured the emotions and expressions so accurately, with a humorous touch, it’s easy to feel what everyone in the story feels. This is a wonderful story for the whole family.

You can find When a DRAGON moves in AGAIN by Jodi Moore on my BUY THE BOOK page.

I also post my reviews on Amazon.com, Amazon.ca, Chapters.Indigo, and Goodreads.

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂

Book Review: 10 Little Ninjas – by Miranda Paul

10-little-ninjas

 

 

 

 

 

 

Book: 10 Little Ninjas
Author: Miranda Paul
Illustrator: Nate Wragg
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers 
Genre: picture book; 2 - 5 yrs; preschool to kindergarten
Date: August 9, 2016
Price: $14.99
My rating: Delightful variation of 10 little monkeys

10 Little Ninjas is a clever, thought-out variation of 10 little monkeys. It’s a rhyming book, in keeping with the nursery rhyme, but with children instead of monkeys. If you can imagine a household with ten children all the same age then you can understand the tiredness of the parents by the end of the children’s day.

It’s bedtime. Miranda Paul has 10 little ninjas sneaking out of bed, 9 tiny astronauts zooming in the dark, 8 rapid racers revving out the gate … and so on. The fun part is that Daddy is always calling in Mama to sort things out and she appears dressed for the part. For 10 ninjas she’s the sensei, for 9 astronauts she’s the pilot, for 8 racers she’s the marshal.

The illustrations by Nate Wragg are exciting, and rightly depicting Mama the lifeguard – by the time it’s 5 hungry sharks swimming lazy laps – looking a little worn out.  When it’s down to 2 sleepy dragons struggling to fly she’s dressed as a wizard and scolding with a yawn.

The last double page illustration is of all ten children sleeping in and on the huge bed, each in a different costume.

This is a fun story by Miranda Paul for young book lovers and early readers.

You can find 10 Little Ninjas on my BUY THE BOOK page.

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂

Yesterday I quit

The only place where dreams are impossible is in your own mind.  – Emalie

 

Yesterday I quit. I gave up. I told myself I can’t do this. I’m not a writer. I’m not even good at this.

I looked around me – at the writers I know – and told myself I am not like them. I don’t write, or even think about writing, the way they do.

You won’t find notebooks full of my writing; I keep most of my thoughts and ideas hidden away in my head and heart. That’s not a writer.

You won’t find my stories on your local bookstore shelves; they aren’t even set free for anyone to read. That’s not a writer.

You won’t find a blog with my ideas shared and out there for review; they are secreted away where no one can judge them. That’s not a writer.

You won’t find my drafts being discussed in a critique group; I don’t belong to a group. That’s not a writer.

So, yesterday I quit.

Then a friend told me it’s not that I’m not a writer, it’s that I don’t have opportunity to write. Well, yes and no. A writer would find opportunities regardless of how complicated life gets, or how tired her body is, or how overloaded her brain feels. A writer would not purposely keep her thoughts to herself, make excuses to not let it happen, fail to release some of that overload through setting her words free. No, that’s not a writer.

So, yesterday I gave up.

I told myself I am kidding myself. I am letting myself believe the impossible when the impossible is … IMPOSSIBLE! 

And then …. I wondered … what then will I do?! When I don’t have that dream, what do I have? And what of my binder full of ideas? My few picture book  manuscripts? my (still) almost completed first draft of my first young adult novel?

Then I thought … HMMMMM

I DO have pages and pages of ideas (for PBs), some just scraps of possibilities, some glimmers of hope, some silly shadows of something that could be … something – or not.

I DO have dreams of sharing my words and ideas – although that’s a scary thing to me – and finding someone eager to publish them because they believe in me.

I DO have the experience of being part of an online critique group for awhile where I shared a couple of my stories for suggestions, also scary for me.

In March I learned that I’m a shy writer. (Check out my review of The Shy Writer by C. Hope Clark.) And I sabotage myself by not allowing my words to find a life and be shared. I’m afraid of not being good enough. I’m afraid of maybe being good enough … and what then?

Maybe I am a writer. Yes, I do write. I’ve had to write in some way for most of my life, probably getting a real start as a troubled teenager full of angst, when expression came through the poetry that flowed from my heart. Since then I’ve captured many poems on paper over the years, most coming out of my faith.

Yes, I am a writer. I think it’s more that I was giving up on my dream. Perhaps it’s that I see it as a fruitless endeavour when what I have wanted for a very long time is to be a published author of children’s books – yet I haven’t taken myself there.

It helps to be rested. I don’t get quality sleep at my dad’s, and then when I’m home every other week I find it hard to settle into sleep. Yes, it helps to be rested. Discouragement feeds itself off one’s weariness. Quitting comes easier.

One dream I’ll share with you is this:  My mother (who is no longer with us) wrote a cute maritime story many years ago, one which would be a delightful picture book, and I know my dad would love to see it in print while he is still able to know. I almost paid (big bucks) to have it done, but … how I would love for a traditional publisher to see it and, of course, their wanting to publish it would be the most exciting thing ever. It would be a sweet memorial to my dear mum.

I am a writer. With a dream. A weary writer (weary everything I am) with a hope to improve. The daughter of a writer with a brilliant imagination who didn’t pursue her talent of writing in the way she would have liked. I want to go beyond that.

Yesterday I quit. I gave up.

Today I am trudging on.

Someday I may give up — But today is not that day.   –  anonymous

Any words of advice or anything to share regarding publishing or anything else?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂