Friday, July 26, 2013

“Anomaly” ~ a very interesting late Middle Grade/Teen book!

Anomaly Krista McGee
ISBN: 978-1401688721
$8.99 (paperback)
$7.69 (kindle)

About the book:
Thalli has fifteen minutes and twenty-three seconds left to live. The toxic gas that will complete her annihilation is invading her bloodstream. But she is not afraid.

Decades before Thalli’s birth, the world ended in a nuclear war. But life went on deep underground, thanks to a handful of scientists known as The Ten. Since then, they have genetically engineered humans to be free from emotions in the hopes that war won’t threaten their lives again.
But Thalli was born with the ability to feel emotions and a sense of curiosity she can barely contain. She has survived so far thanks to her ability to hide those differences. But Thalli’s secret is discovered when she is overwhelmed by the emotion in an ancient piece of music.

She is quickly scheduled for annihilation, but her childhood friend, Berk, convinces The Ten to postpone her death and study her instead. While in the scientists’ Pod, Thalli and Berk form a dangerous alliance, one strictly forbidden by the constant surveillance in the pods.

As her life ticks away, she hears rumors of someone called the Designer—someone even more powerful than The Ten. What’s more, the parts of her that have always been an anomaly could in fact be part of a much larger plan. And the parts of her that she has always guarded could be the answer she’s been looking for all along.

Thalli must sort out what to believe and who she can trust, before her time runs out…

My thoughts:
Anomaly has a very interesting concept behind the story. The book's setting is AFTER Nuclear War has destroyed the world as you and I know it. 10 scientists saw what was coming and prepared a society deep in the earth and fled as the world ended. During the period before the book starts a new society has formed, babies are created (not in the natural way), formed and are designed with a specific purpose for their pod. Thalli was designed to be her pod's musician and her job is to support and encourage her pod mates as they work. But she is an anomaly - and she is found out and scheduled for annihilation.

What I found interesting as I read this book is how the 10 scientists have designed a society that relies on each other and ultimately on the 10 scientists. Within 3 generations the words (and knowledge of) God, His Savings Grace & Purpose, Love, Marriage have all been wiped out and each individual is designed to have NO emotions, feelings, illnesses and nothing can go wrong because if it does they will be destroyed.

Now having said that. When Thalli is sent to be tested she meets a friend who has already left their pod and is destined to become one of the scientists. He talks the other scientists into letting him see if what he is working on will "fix" her. While he is trying to help Thalli she ends up meeting John, the only other naturally created human and he shares the Love of Christ (or the original designer) with her.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book although it wasn't at all what I expected. The writing is a bit tough to read so I would say it is for TEEN not for Middle Graders unless they have a strong grasp of language and a high reading comprehension. Parents you may want to read it before or with your kids (especially if they are younger) so you can answer questions. Personally I think a list of questions with this book would be great and it would be perfect for book clubs to read together.

Read this article by the author: Faith vs Science? (it's outstanding!) and if you'd like to learn more about the author and what she's all about.... be sure to visit Krista McGee's blog here! and friend her on facebook too!

Disclaimer: I was offered a copy of the book to read and review on CCB. I was not required to have a positive review and no money exchanged hands. Thanks for reading!

CymLowell Kid Lit Blog Hop

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Extend your bible reading times with the Bible Stories Painting Book 2

Bible Stories Painting Book 2
by: Juliet David
ISBN: 978-1859859797
$7.19 (paperback)

About the book:
Bible Stories Painting Book 1 and Bible Stories Painting Book 2 are two fantastic painting books that are easy to use with no mess involved! Each book has sixteen scenes from the Old and New Testaments with a simple line of text explaining the picture. Simply dip your brush in water, wipe over the paint pallets on the inside covers and fill in the illustrations with bright, bold colors!

My thoughts:
This cute book is filled with several stories from the Bible that really bring the scenes to life. There are 2 sets of watercolor pallettes 1 set in the front and one in the back. There are a total of 16 pages for kids to paint on 8 pages front and back. I loved the scenes - they are descriptive but not over detailed with to much going on in the scene. Personally I would of prefered that each scene was on a separate sheet of paper so each could be painted, however I did like that the pages didn't bleed through very much and if the child wanted to still paint the back side after the front had dried that works fine. We just had to spread out each page so it would lie flat as much as possible.

Connor loved this book. We've been reading a Bible Story from the Classic Children's Bible every day this summer and will be continuing to do this during the school year. I love being able to extend some of the stories in creative ways and this definitely fits the bill! I think I will plan on purchasing a book for each of my daycare kids to use and then they can enjoy doing all the stories.

Disclaimer: I was offered a copy of the book to read and review on CCB. I was not required to have a positive review and no $$ exchanged hands. Thanks for reading CCB.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Advise needed & Things your child needs to know for Kindergarten

Many of you know that I opened a daycare in my home about a year ago. I like to work on literacy (of course) as well as counting, sequencing and social skills but sometimes it's really hard to know if your covering everything that needs to be done (besides teaching them NOT to hit, fight, scream, throw tamper tantrums or let someone walk all over them!). 

I've been looking on Pinterest for some fun alphabet ideas and came across the "I Can Teach My Child" blog and she has WONDERFUL ideas. I thought I'd share 2 posts in particular. I'm going to print them off and put them on the fridge when I get home....


and this leads me to....

What advise do you have for preparing preschoolers for Kindergarten (especially ideas for teaching BOYS that need to learn to listen and follow directions)? One of the little guys (he's 5 1/2) in my daycare is very analytical and gets VERY focused when he is watching movement like water flowing, pouring, spinning, etc (no he's not autistic) and he keeps following the flow of the water... and somehow he totally tunes out his environment.

Any thoughts on correcting this behavior? School is going to be a true struggle if he doesn't get past this... I've started giving him timeouts each time he doesn't answer when I ask him a question (a pet peeve of mine as I feel it's a little disrespectful when I know he hears me and chooses to ignore me). I'd like some other ideas for working on this issue.

For the next month we are going to focus on following directions (playing games, etc) and Listening with 2 Ears. Any advise would be great appreciated!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Tips to make returning to school easier (not better) & WIN a $1000 Visa Gift Card!

Back to School Tips

Welcome to the Back to School Blast!

Getting your family prepared to head back to school, can be difficult especially after a long, fun-filled summer. Here are a few of our favorite Back to School Tips to help you along the way.

Visit Mom to Bed by 8 for some GREAT Back to School Tips
and a chance to WIN a:

Please LIKE & Share this post for me ~ Thanks!

Disclosure:Classic Children's Books is not responsible for sponsor prize shipment. Please contact with questions or to see your business or blog featured on the next big event!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Week 6: Summer Book Club ~ Unleash

It's Here!

This is the last week of the 2013 Summer Book Club - thank you so much for joining us this year. I hope you all enjoyed the reviews and entered the giveaway. Is there a book that you especially want to read? If you haven't read all of the reviews yet.... scroll down below todays review and check out the other weeks.

Week 6: Unleash by Brock Eastman
$10.30 (paperback)

About the book:
The Wikk kids quest has unleashed their potential for adventure. Now working as a team, they face the greatest dangers yet: a plundered planet, lies and betrayal, and terrible lizards...

My thoughts:
Well. Where do I start? Unleash is the 3rd book in a fascinating, fast moving and edge of your seat series. It's a series that kids from 8 years old all the way to adult are thoroughly enjoying.

Unleash opens up with the kids traveling yet again this time to answer a distress call and to deliver Obbin back home to his family. Once they get to the planet they find out things have deteriorated rapidly and this time when they leave the planet things are no longer in the Wikk kid's control - including their ship and their lives. It's no longer about the kid's need to rescue their parents - but solving a riddle that is ages old and helping others escape the Ubel and a traitor.

This book covers more than just the riddle - the Wikk kids are introduced to the Creator, the Rescuer and the Helper by Obbin. Brock has introduced the story of Salvation in a unique way that should connect with most kids (and adults) and explain to them in an easy to understand way the sacrifice that Christ made for each of us. I did have to ask him about a key part of the Salvation story that is left out (for now) and he told me that it is a key part of the story and just may turn up in one of the remaining 2 books.... It will be very interesting to see how he ties all the pieces together because this story is far from being over and I'm sure it will continue to accelerate and end with a bang!

You can connect with Brock & the Wikk Kids on the Quest For Truth (as well as his many OTHER books) on his website. Check it out:


Be sure to check out all the other books in the 2013 Middle Grade Summer Book Club - you can enter the giveaway on any of the posts - just besure to get in all the weekly entries so you can get into all the other FUN entries.

Week 1: The Cats of Tanglewood Forest (order) (my review)
Week 2: Leviathan (order) (my review)
Week 3: The Lily Series: Lily Robbins, MD (order) (my review)
Week 4: Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel (order) (my review)
Week 5: The Phoenix Files (order) (my review) (order directly from me pls)

Week 6: Unleashed (order) (my review)

The annual Summer Book Club Giveaway!
You can enter our great Summer Book Club Giveaway which will be drawn on August 1st - just in time for the last few weeks of summer when kids start to get bored and need something new to do. This year we will be running it a little different since I am officially without a computer (thanks to Malware & a nasty virus which wiped out my registry) -
How to Enter:
Each week return to CCB to read that week's review and enter that week's entry question. Each week there will be a mandatory question (as well as the usual provide your FULL Contact information) - without the contact information your answers and entries will be deleted. You'll also have the opportunity to enter via Tweeting, posting on FB and Sharing on any of the numerous linkies that are available. The non-mandatory entries are extras that you have the choice of getting extra entries.
The giveaway will include:
This weeks giveaway will include the FIRST book in this series so you can start at the beginning! This is one of those series that you can read individually - but really to get all the nitty gritty details and know what is really going on it's helpful to start at the beginning.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: I was offered a copy of the book to read and review on CCB. I was not required to post a positive review and no $ exchanged hands. Thanks for reading CCB!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Week 5: Summer Book Club - The Phoenix Files, Contact

The Phoenix Files: Contact (Book 1) 
by Chris Morphews
ISBN: 978-1610670913
$6.99 (paperback)
$6.99 (ebook)

About the book:
Luke Hunter soon realizes that the new town he’s now living in is no ordinary town. Then he and his new friends, Peter and Jordan, discover a plot to wipe out the rest of the human race – in only one hundred days. The clock is ticking.

My thoughts:
Yes, I'm finally adding this series to my Summer Book Club. I've wanted to read it ever since Usborne started carrying it last year. Many of you know I wasn't to crazy about the Conspiracy 365 series that came out a couple years ago. It's such a huge series to read - and I really like that that this series is complete in 5-6 novels. The perfect length for a series of books for the middle grade.

The Phoenix Files is a series of books based on 3 teens who (along with their parents) move to the brand new town of Phoenix. It's in Australia somewhere out in the bush (for you Americans it's in the middle of NOWHERE). The teens and families arrive in a military grade helicopter with the windows spray painted over so they couldn't see where they were going. They are encouraged to bring nothing but their suitcases - the Phoenix Group (their parents are working for) will supply everything else they will need. There is a Phoenix High School where our 3 new Teen Friends attend school (in matching grey pants, white shirt and red ties), the houses are all identical (including matching matching furniture all in shades of grey) and there are no motorized vehicles - that's right no cars, trucks (except the supply trucks) and guess what? There is no communication with the outside world - unfortunately Luke's Dad is part of the outside world after he and his mother divorce and it turns out Luke's family is the ONLY family unit without 2 parents.

So what happens when Luke and Jordan (the last 2 families to be chosen to arrive) each receive a USB with a cryptic label on it, meet a crazed man called Crazy Bill and start an investigation with their new pal Peter?

All I can say is that I am definitely looking forward to the next book in this series. The story gets kind of slow in the middle and I started wondering when the story was going to speed up some but the last few chapters of the book get very good and well, I finished this book sometime around 10 pm last night.

You can purchase this book and the other 4 books in this series (stay tuned for Doomsday to come out probably this fall!) - email me if you are in the US and I'll be happy to help you order. Otherwise you can find a consultant with Usborne Books in your community who would be glad to help you. =D

A Q&A with Chris Morphew:
I did find an interview regarding parts of the last book that was published in this series (Doomsday - email me if you'd like to order this series). You can hear the interview here - it features Chris (the author) answering questions from readers and also a little bit about why he wrote the series in the manner he did. Moms while your there enjoy his accent LOL). Check it out here:

Learn more about The Phoenix Files books on the authors (Chris Morphew) website:


Week 1: The Cats of Tanglewood Forest (order) (my review)
Week 2: Leviathan (order) (my review)
Week 3: The Lily Series: Lily Robbins, MD (order) (my review)
Week 4: Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel (order) (my review)
Week 5: The Phoenix Files (order) (my review)

Week 6: Unleashed (order) (my review)

This giveaway has ended & the winners have been notified.
Join us again next year!

Disclaimer: I was offered a copy of the book to read and review on CCB. I was not required to post a positive review and no $ exchanged hands. Thanks for reading CCB!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Establishing a daily routine that includes God in our lives

How many of you have a daily routine that includes time spent with God? I can remember Mom and Dad trying to include a daily devotional time which of course always felt like they were preaching to us. It wasn't about encouraging us to get to know Christ as our Savior or our Friend - it was about telling us we HAD to do it and that as usual parents were always right and kids were wrong. Well, needless to say I didn't really want much to do with nightly devotions (neither did my brother who couldn't sit still at all and threw fits until dad gave up).

Adventures in Odyssey (my regular readers know how much I love AIO - and how they teach everyone (kids & grown ups alike) about God, our Faith and how we should live without preaching at us. They have come up with a new devotion aptly named "90 Devotions for Kids" (check out the audio here) which will help you with setting up a daily routine that includes God and His Word.

The 90 Devotions for Kids book which is designed for families with kids 8-12 includes illustrations, puzzles, and kid-friendly applications. It also includes a daily Bible verse, daily challenges, words of encouragement from different AIO characters, and more. Even if your kids aren’t already Adventures in Odyssey fans, they’ll enjoy these daily devotionals, and get to know the Odyssey crew along the way.

This devotional, and the edition coming this fall (90 Devotions for Kids: Life Changing Values from the Book of Matthew) are great tools to help your kids put a regular pause in their day for Bible reading, prayer, and thoughts about God. If you start now—by the first day of school, you’ll already have a spiritual component scheduled into your kids’ routine. After that, everything else will hopefully just fall into line!
Would you like to WIN a copy of 90 Devotions for Kids to start your kid's mornings & 2013 school year off right? Well, here's your chance! (or if you don't want to wait to see if you WIN - you can purchase it here).
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: I am part of the ACTS Team through Tyndale Kids and am sharing this with you because I think it's a great program! I was not offered anything in exchange for my participating and was not required to have a positive review. Thanks for reading CCB!