Monday, July 26, 2010

For All Ages

Miss Rumphius
Story and pictures by Barbara Cooney
As a child Great-aunt Alice Rumphius resolved that when she grew up she would go to faraway places, live by the sea in her old age, and do something to make the world more beautiful- and she does all those things, the last being the most difficult of all.
This book is one of my favorites. There is a message in here for everyone. It's a great read out loud, that can be read over and over.

Rating- Buy it in hardcover, the paperback will wear out.

Ages 10+

The Untold Story of Robin Hood and Maid Marian
by Kathryn Lasky
Before she was Maid Marian, she was Matty.......
Matty has been raised to dance well, embroider exquisitely, and marry nobly. But when Matty's mother is murdered before her very eyes and her father, a nobleman, is reduced to poverty, Matty's life changes.
As the daughter of Nottingham's most famous falconer, she finds a new destiny in the hawks her father keeps. She begins to understand their thoughts and even speak their language. The beautiful merlin Marigold becomes Matty's closest winged companion and her fiercest ally.
It is a treacherous time in England. The sheriff of Nottingham is rising to power, and a true king has been kidnapped. Determined to fight, Matty's friend Fynn becomes Robin Hood. As Maid Marian, Matty joins Fynn and his Merry Men, famously robbing from the rich to give to the poor.
You thought that you knew the legend, but this is the untold story. Bestselling author Kathryn Lasky soars to magnificent new heights here, giving us a bold tale of bravery and romance.
I picked up this book because I've always loved the Robin Hood legend, and often wondered about the origins of Robin Hood and Maid Marian. This book doesn't disappoint.
There was a lot of information about falcons and the art of falconry in this book, which I found interesting. I thought the addition of Matty (who later becomes Maid Marian) being able to communicate with the falcons will draw in kids, especially the animal lovers.
I loved the main character, Matty, because she had a lot of spunk and wouldn't let the boys tell her that she couldn't do something just because she was a girl. I thought the author did a good job representing what Maid Marian would have been like as a kid.
I also enjoyed Fynn (who later becomes Robin Hood). The way Kathryn Lasky wrote his personality, I could totally believe that he would become Robin Hood. He was a bit of a smart aleck and very clever.
My final verdict- if you like the legend of Robin Hood, you will enjoy this book.
Rating: Borrow it from the library or buy it.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Favorite Character Book Release!

Olivia Goes To Venice
By: Ian Falconer
Ages 3-7
Release Date: September 28, 1010

Olivia takes her discerning eye for style to beautiful Venice on a family vacation that involves dodging pigeons in the Piazza San Marco, gorging on gelato, and barely staying afloat in a gondola.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

My Childhood Favorites

By Rose

I've always loved reading. I was that kid that woke up super super early so I could read for 2 hours before I had to go to school. I still remember attempting to walk around the house and do chores while reading. It didn't work too well. At 2 years old, I used to sit by myself in a corner with my mother's Glamour magazine and read myself a story. (She eventually had to take Glamour away because she was worried about the content). Was I born to be a bookworm? Yes, I was.
The books that I read as a kid are what made me love reading so much as an adult. I've always been a bit obsessive over whatever book/TV show/movie/music I happen to be into at a particular time. There are certain books- Bridge to Terabithia, Anne of Green Gables, Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH- that I remember reading over and over. These are still some of the best books I've ever read. There's something magical about books when you're a kid.

I guess you think you know this story.
You don’t. The real one’s much more gory.
The phoney one, the one you know,
Was cooked up years and years ago. . . .

With his famous wicked humor and the cunning of a big bad wolf, master storyteller and satirist Roald Dahl retells his six favorite fairy tales. Get ready for Dahl’s diabolical version of what really happened to Cinderella, Goldilocks, the Three Little Pigs, Jack and the Beanstalk, Snow White, and Little Red Riding Hood. -from

This book greatly influenced me as a child. I actually taped my performances from it on

the tape player I got for my 10th birthday. For ages 7 +.

All summer, Jess pushed himself to be the fastest boy in the fifth grade, and when the year's first school-yard race was run, he was going to win.But his victory was stolen by a newcomer, by a girl, one who didn't even know enough to stay on the girls' side of the playground. Then, unexpectedly, Jess finds himself sticking up for Leslie, for the girl who breaks rules and wins races. The friendship between the two grows as Jess guides the city girl through the pitfalls of life in their small, rural town, and Leslie draws him into the world of imaginations world of magic and ceremony called Terabithia. Here, Leslie and Jess rule supreme among the oaks and evergreens, safe from the bullies and ridicule of the mundane world. Safe until an unforeseen tragedy forces Jess to reign in Terabithia alone, and both worlds are forever changed.

In this poignant, beautifully rendered novel, Katherine Paterson weaves a powerful story of friendship and courage.


This was my favorite book of the 5th grade. I read it over and over. I always was a

sucker for books that make you cry. For ages 10+.

Mrs. Frisby, a widowed mouse with four small children, is faced with a terrible problem. She must move her family to their summer quarters immediately, or face almost certain death. But her youngest son, Timothy, lies ill with pneumonia and must not be moved. Fortunately, she encounters the rats of NIMH, an extraordinary breed of highly intelligent creatures, who come up with a brilliant solution to her dilemma. And Mrs. Frisby in turn renders them a great service. -from

I found this book completely fascinating. The idea of these highly intelligent rats

and their secret underground world will draw in any kid. Good for ages 8-12.

"Well, first of all, " said the BFG, "human beans is not really believing in giants, is they? Human beans is not thinking we exist."

Sophie discovers that giants not only exist, but that there are a great many of them who like to guzzle and swallomp nice little chiddlers. But not the Big Friendly Giant. He and Sophie cook up an ingenious plot to free the world of troggle-humping -- forever. -from

I actually did a book report on this book in 4th grade, where I brought my clarinet in and played in class. The BFG had a horn that he played, and I used my clarinet to represent that. This book is really funny and strange. Great for ages 8-11.

Father is missing! His top secret job as a physicist for the government has taken him away—but where?—and how? Meg and her younger brother, Charles Wallace, set out with their friend Calvin on an exciting adventure through time and space to search for him. With the help of the mysterious Mrs. Whatsit, Mrs. Who and Mrs. Which, the youngsters learn to expect the unexpected as they move in the fifth dimension known as the "tesseract".

With this award-winning story, Madeline L'Engle has captivated millions of readers throughout the world. Her universal themes of courage, perseverance, and love are interwoven with imagination and suspense. A Wrinkle in Time, published in 1962, won the distinguished Newbery Medal for children's literature in 1963. -from

Wow, I loved this book. In fact, the whole series. I found the idea that actual science was behind these stories obsession-worthy. This is the first in the series, although my very favorite was A Wind in the Door, where they talk about mitochondria. Just read it, you won't regret it. For ages 9+.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Story Time Idea

Tea For Ruby
By: Sarah Ferguson
Ages 4-8
One sunny morning, the postman brings Ruby an amazing invitation to have tea with — the Queen! Ruby had better polish her manners and quickly. Will Ruby really be ready in time?

I have a 4 year old little girl who LOVES story time. Once she hit 3 1/2 she decided she no longer just wanted to sit and hear the stories, but read them to me instead. Not being able to read made this endeavor a little hard for the stories she didn't know by heart. At the very least she wanted to take a more active role in the stories. Enter: Tea For Ruby.

Instead of just listening to the story, she was now able to help me tell it. In the story the words "The Queen" are said quite often. When they came up she was in charge of saying them. She was able to be as dramatic or creative in saying them as she wanted to be. All of a sudden a cute story became a cute interactive one. We both have fun with this story. It's a great time when you have several children who can yell it!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Pinkalicious And The Pink Drink

Pinkalicious And The Pink Drink
By: Vidtoria Kann
22 Pages
Reviewed by: Alyssa, 4 years old
(A HUGE fan of Pinkalicious)

One hot summer day, Pinkalicious gets an idea that is simply pinkerrific—a pink lemonade stand! But before Pinkalicious can start selling her lemonade, she has to figure out how to make it. Pink grapefruit, pink watermelon, and pink frosting—if it's pink, it's the perfect ingredient!

1. Did you like the story?
Yes, I did. I just love Pinkalicious

2. What was your favorite part?
When Peter knocked over the lemonade & when Pinkalicious put all the things in the drink.

3. Who was your favorite character? Why?
Pinkalicious. Because we both like the color pink.

4. Do you think other kids would like this book?
Yes, I do. They should read it.

The Mystery Of Biltmore House

The Mystery of Biltmore House
By: Carole Marsh
139 Pages (there are extras after the story)

In 1981, Carole Marsh (a real writer) took four real kids on a visit to the famous Biltmore House in Asheville, North Carolina. They went to learn about George W. Vanderbilt, the Victorian Era, O. Henry, and more. There was only one little problem... First one kid disappeared. Then another! Then, so did a priceless antique chess set! There was the creepy Halloween room, the very scary basement, the eerie attic, and all those gape-mouthed gargoyles. Oh yeah, and all that blood! And did I say that the kids got trapped in the mile-long heating system? Did I say ONE LITTLE problem?! How about LOTS of BIG problems!

I LOVED this book!! It was so much fun to read! This is a good mystery for beginners. The way educational facts were blended into the story was phenomenal. This was the first book in a series that is going on almost 30 books (at the time of this copy's printing) and it's geared for children reading between 3-5 reading levels. With stories involving New York City, Chocolate Town, Disney World and sooo many more, there is something for everyone in this series.

The characters, both the main 4 and all the secondary ones, were fun to read. Uncle Ed is the security guard who befriends them. I thought he was aptly named, too. Stacy was the girl who's been to Biltmore House more times than she can count and wasn't happy to be going now since she had other plans. She was able to offer a lot of detail and authenticity to the book. You had the one spooky guest of the Writing Class who liked to dress up like Edgar Allen Poe. He felt the need to tell the children a bizarre and disgusting link between the house's original owners & Napoleon (I don't think it was true).

I'm looking forward to reading another book in this series, though I don't know which one it'll be. I hope you enjoy this book as much as I did.

Rating: Buy It

Monday, July 12, 2010

Mystery Series For Reading Level 3-5

Carole Marsh is the author behind is HUGE mystery series geared for children reading between Level 3-5. She takes real children and places them in her books. There are TONS of books in this series, so there should be something for everyone! She has stories involving, Chocolate Town, Disneyland, Pirates...

I'm reading the first book in this series now: The Mystery of Biltmore House. So far I'm enjoying it. I'm already deciding the next one of this series I'll read. Give it a try!!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Family Reading Invitation Update!!

My Father-in-Law & I read Treasure Island together. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it since it wasn't something I would normally read. We both thought it was groundbreaking and enjoyable. (I can't even count how many times he's read the book!) While we liked that all the characters were essential in the story we did have our favorites. He likes Dr. Livesey and I enjoyed Long John Silver. His favorite scene was when the parrot rats out Jim's arrival by screeching out "Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight!" and mine was when Long John Silver talks his way out of the being given the Black Spot (A pirates death notice telling how long they have left to live.)

If you, or anyone you know, likes adventure and pirate tales, they might enjoy this book. However, we should warn you the book may be harder to read for some. There were times I got confused by some of the vocabulary used. While the Barnes & Noble Classics series is a little helpful, the heavy use of nautical terms and old English slang can be hard to understand for some readers. We both thought 11+ would probably be a good age to attempt the book at. --Jen

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

D'Aulaires Book of Greek Myths

Reviewed for Kids Book Korner by Betty Jordan Wester

From Gaia & the twelve Olympians to minor gods & the heroes of Greece, this comprehensive & relatively unbowdlerized collection of greek myths is sure to delight adults & children alike.

Boys will thrill to the daring of heroes & the menace of monsters. Girls will be enthralled by tales of powerful goddesses not to be trifled with.

Nearly every page has a detailed & gorgeous picture. The D'Aulaires never condescend to their audience. Rather, they perfectly marry the power of greek art with the whimsy of childrens illustration.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Family Reading Invitation Update!!

Nightly Regulars For My 10 Month Old & I

I read books to my infant on a fairly regular basis when I put her down for bed at night. We always include these book in the pile we read. She seems to really love the colors and the pictures. Whenever I get a glance of her she seems glued to the illustrations. I love the stories and how cute they are!

I didn't have these with my oldest and I'm wishing I did. They are so adorable and fun to read!

Family Reading Invitation Update!!

Here's A book I read to both my girls.

I loved this book when I was little, so I took a shot and bought for my oldest when she was born. Turns out, she loves it! I tried it on my youngest, who is now 10 months old, and she loves it, too! They both love how animated I make Grover during the story. My oldest, who is 4, practically has it memorized and loves all the things Grover tries to do to keep us from turning the pages. It's a great, fun read that we've been enjoying for years!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

The Happy Bee

The Happy Bee
By: Ian Beck
32 Pages
Reviewed By: Lauren Kuramoto, 6

Every day the little bee flew from flower to flower and said "Hello" to Daisy, Rosie, Poppy and Lily. Now I wonder why this little bee was so happy? Ian Beck has painted the perfect story for very, very young children.

What was you favorite part of the story?
When the Bee landed on the rose.

What happened to the bee at the end of the story?
He was happy because he landed on the rainbow and it made him BUZZ!!!

If you could be anything in the story what would it be?
I would be a good rose because I smell good after a bath.

Rating: Buy It!!

Family Reading Invitation Update!!

My almost 4 year old daughter, Alyssa, & I read Library Mouse: A Friend's Tale By Daniel Kirk together. She loved all the characters- and proceeded to list them all by name! I loved the illustrations. The story was cute. When we finished reading, we went back to see how many of the books shown in the illustrations we had on her bookshelf. She loved The Library Mouse, so I'm glad she enjoys this one as well. -- Jen

Family Reading Invitation

kids book korner is proud to kick off our 1st

We're turning the month of July into Family Reading Month!
Please join us! Read a book (or more) with any family member & talk about it!
Discover new books & characters!! Go on adventures together! Solve a mystery together!
We hope you have a great time! Your welcome to tell us about it!