#BookReview The Underground Toy Society Helps Ellie the Elephant

The Underground Toy Society series continues with a marvelous addition!

This time around, those pesky kids left Ellie the Elephant behind! But no worries faithful audience, the Underground Toy Society is going to come to the rescue!

My positives:
1. I love the opening picture of the book with two girls holding their stuffed animals and reading. It’s utterly adorable and gives you a great feel for what this book is going to be: heartwarming.
2. The squirrel drawing. That’s all. The squirrel itself is a positive. I think Chippy’s cute.
3. This children’s book is a little longer. It has paragraphs and a full story instead of the typical simple sentences with rhyming schemes.

My negatives:
1. As with the other books by Jessica, the aesthetic of children’s drawings may not please all readers. It is by no means a negative for me, but I can see some readers not enjoying it.
2. How did the mole get a bow and a skirt? Did someone leave them behind and Mindy decided to wear them? I need to know. This is crucial. It is not explained anywhere in the book!
3. This book didn’t have as much of a theme as the original did, but it’s still a marvelous little story.

Overall, this is a cute book and I’d highly recommend picking it up! If you’re looking for something different for your kids, then grab this unique book! The pictures are drawn by Jessica’s kid, she’s a self-published, indie author and it’s just a magical little series!

Four out of five stars!

I received a free copy of this book from the author, Jessica D. Adams, in exchange for an honest review.

 

Check this book out on:
Goodreads
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com

 

Check out Jessica on:
http://onesweetday48.wix.com/undergroundtoysociet
Twitter – @onesweetday48
Facebook
YouTube

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#BookReview A Bicycle Made for Two by Mary Jayne Baker

Oh, Mary Jayne Baker. It’s like you wrote this book just for me! It’s 100% British and took me back to my youth when my Dad used every British slang word and saying he could all day, everyday. Meanwhile, it’s a cute, comedic romance that reminds me I’m an adult. It’s safe to say, this book was a nostalgia trip for me and a half!

If I had to pick one word to describe this book, it would be quirky! It doesn’t totally fit into one category for me, and that’s totally okay. It has a lot of comedy, a pinch of romance, some epic drama and lots of fictional heists to follow. Just labelling it one of those words (or genres) would be a tragedy! This book is just too good to be put into one little corner.

So, down to the meat of it: Lana Donati is our lead, but her brother Tom, friends Yolanda, Gerry, and Sue, a sexy television star named Hunter, and the love interest/former pro cyclist Stewart all take part in this story too. This book starts out seeming like it’ll be your typical romance: Lana and Stewart have a date but then… oh yes… the date goes sour. Stewart doesn’t call Lana and life goes to the pits. Her Father passes away and leaves the siblings his restaurant and the Tour de France is coming to town! Big things are coming Lana’s way…

For reference, I’m Canadian (half British, but good ol’ Canada is my home) so I don’t have many British references to give you. If I had to pick one that the masses from North America and the U.K. would understand, I’d relate this book to Coronation Street. It has the fun and quirky characters, the dramatic plot and British-ness I love about the show. But, sometimes that show can get depressing so imagine the funny and romantic storylines.

The banter itself is golden. I started highlighting all of the hilarious comments on my ecopy and I almost highlighted half the book (whoops!).

Since I don’t want to deal with too much copyright, here’s two excellent comments that made me laugh hysterically and giggle and chuckle and all of the fun laugh terms:

“Scott Spen, 26. Looks like a sheep, sounds like a sheep, may actually be part sheep.” Like, dude, who doesn’t look at dating profiles and think stuff like that?! Just me? Cool.

“A honking good pair.” Without context, sounds brutal. Read the book and you’ll be giggling along with me.

Comedy like THIS is what gets me laughing. Witty sarcasm is the best kind of humour, so I absolutely loved this novel.

Did I have negative? Of course I did! No book is perfect.

In some places online, this book was marketed more like a romance, and it’s not a pure romance. It’s more comedic romance, not Hallmark or Harlequin style romance at all. If a reader comes specifically for that romance, they will be let down. But… does that ruin the book? Heck no! That’s just my point of view.

Overall, this book is an absolute delight and totally fits into my wheelhouse! I love Mary Jayne Baker’s writing and will definitely be sticking around for the long haul. This book was marvelous!

Five out of five stars!

I received a book for free from the publisher in exchange of an honest review.

 

Check out this book on:
Goodreads
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com
Indigo

 

Find out more about the amazing Mary Jayne Baker on:
http://www.maryjaynebaker.co.uk/
Twitter – @maryjaynebaker
Goodreads – Author Page

 

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#BookReview The Underground Toy Society by Jessica D. Adams

The Underground Toy Society by Jessica D. Adams is a charming little book following toys who just want to be played with!

This book gave me Toy Story vibes. There are two dolls who want to be reunited and decide to help take care of toys. It’s a sweet premise and works really well within the book. Add in the aspect of the underground toy society taking toys to loving homes so they are played with, and you have a real winner.

My positives:
1. This book thematically makes sense: you don’t need a ton of toys but you do need to give love to the toys you have. It also showcases friendship and love in general. Educational books always make me pleased as a reader!
2. I haven’t seen much of this premise out in the children’s book world, so it was a lovely treat.
3. The book is obviously home made which makes it stand out. I am curious who drew the pictures that are used in this book. I know this aesthetic will be a negative for some people, but for reviewers like me I like seeing variation in the books I read. I can imagine children reading it and realizing they too could draw pictures for books and we might get them more interested in reading. It’s all in the mind frame of the readers.
4. This book is simple and easy to read. It’s not complicated and makes for a nice, smooth read.
5. The reason behind this book is super cute – Jessica kept her toys for her children. The adult readers will appreciate this fact way more than the kids.

My negatives:
1. I see the book is listed as 3-10 but I would almost argue some 3 year olds these days wouldn’t have the patience to sit through this book. That being said, I know there are some wickedly smart 3 year olds who would love it. Keep in mind that this book is short, but has a paragraph on each page. Know your child! I would recommend age five to ten as the best age group.
2. The aesthetic for the pictures will be a negative for some readers. It isn’t for me, but I wanted to include that ‘s’ on negatives.

Overall, this was a charming little book that I think will be a perfect addition to your child’s book shelf. Pick it up for the holidays (since I read this just before Christmas) and share your love of reading with your little ones!

Four out of five stars!

I received a free copy of this book from the author, Jessica D. Adams, in exchange for an honest review.

 

You can find this book on:
Goodreads
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com

Check out Jessica on:
http://onesweetday48.wix.com/undergroundtoysociet
Twitter – @onesweetday48
Facebook
YouTube

 

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#BookReview Miss Kane’s Christmas by Caroline Mickelson

Christmas in July! That is what this book felt like reading, and boy did I need a little Christmas spirit in my life!

Miss Kane’s Christmas is a cute, short tale about Carol Kane and her magical abilities. She is sent to help Ben and his two children, Hillary and Patrick, fall in love with Christmas again. Along the way, Christmas isn’t the only thing these guys start to love…

Ben is a massive Scrooge for most of the book and it’s Carol’s job to fix it! He’s writing a novel that Santa doesn’t want written and he’s not spending as much time with his children as he should! Especially since their mother is no longer in the picture. Carol is super sweet, slightly innocent and utterly adorable. Ben has a heart that might grow five sizes bigger or turn into gold, you’ll have to read to find out!

This book felt goofy (in such a good way!) and I absolutely loved it! This book screams Hallmark or Netflix movie with all of the romantic talk, Christmas references and adorable plot lines. Hillary and Patrick want a dog, Ben and Carol start falling for one another, a brother named Nick – there are so many fun aspects of this book. I am SO glad I picked this book up “on accident”- also known as forgetting a book and finding a free one on Bookbub to pass the time by.

If you like contemporary drama, a splash of romance and Christmas, this book will be for you! It reminds me of Harlequin and Hallmark, but it was super fun! It’s not a book you’ll want to take too seriously since it is founded on Christmas magic and love. It can easily standalone and doesn’t end on one of those horrible cliffhangers that drive me mad. This book is rated PG for sure – it’s sweet, has a little kissing but doesn’t hint at much more.

I did have one negative – this book moves WAY to fast. Relationship statuses, beliefs in traditions and much more happen so suddenly it doesn’t feel real. I feel like it could have been solved with a time jump or a few more pages thrown in, but it’s not that much of an issue. The rush might bug me, but it won’t bug most readers.

I would love to continue reading this series. It seems like it’ll be an enjoyable read and there are more books around!

Four out of five stars!

I found this book for free on Bookbub!

P.S. What type of puppy did they did?!

 

Check out this book on:
Goodreads
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com

 

Check out some other books you might enjoy:
#BookReview Fly With Me by Hudson Lin
#BookReview The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares
#BookReview Once Upon an Ever After by Angela N. Blount

 

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#BookReview The Boy Who Cried Ghost by Richard Clark

The Boy Who Cried Ghost by Richard Clark is a spooky, cute tale to get your little minions into the horror genre.

This book is by no means a horror novel, but if you want to work your way up to Goosebumps then you’ve found the right book! I love Richard Clark’s fun way to presenting a novel, and his entire book catalog feels the same. It’s simple to read, fun to say aloud, and makes you feel like you’re whisked away into another universe.

I’d call this book SPOOKY, because it does dabble in the haunted house side of horror. It’s not super scary, but it’s be a great way to get your kids thinking about Halloween or scary movies. Following Peter, Denise, Brenda and Fritz on their real estate shopping was a real fun way to present the stereotypical haunted house plot line. Throw in a few POPs and BANGs and you’ve got yourself a solid, fun to read story.

It’s not my favourite book, but it wasn’t meant for me as a reader. It will definitely be a hit with the kids who need a reading buddy or a bed time read (hopefully this won’t cause any nightmares!)! I would have loved this book back in the day with my reading buddy, we would have had a smashing good time!

Also, can I read Chiller Comix?! It sounds like a lot of fun!

Three out of five stars!

I found this book via Bookbub.

 

If you enjoyed this book, check out another you might enjoy!
#BookReview The Mega Collection by Scott Gordon – Nine Awesome Bedtime Stories!
#BookReview Unhinged by Richard Clark
#BookReview Pandora’s Lunch Box: Don’t Open! by Richard Clark

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#BookReview Dance with a Vampire by Ellen Schreiber

This is one of my fave throwbacks to my teen years – Ellen Schreiber and her Vampire Kisses series. To say I was obsessed with this series is an absolute understatement. Recently, I picked this book up again and decided to throw myself into this series, and I still love it!

This series is full of cute-sy YA romance with Alexander and Raven. The book is written for a younger audience, but if you’re like me and love sinking away into a fantastical world then it will be no issue to you. If you’re expecting a “True Blood-esque” novel, then you’ve come to the wrong place.

The fourth book in this series, Dance with a Vampire, continues Alexander and Raven’s epic love story. Except, this time around we’ve got more crazy antics that the pair have to deal with. Valentine is now up to her trouble, making it seem impossible for our love birds to have a happy ending.

A note for the reader: These books are relatively short, which makes them a fun, sweet, and smooth read. It’s really easy to binge all of these books in a day if you have the nerve to. I read the first four books (back in the day) on a bus ride to a school swim meet. I re-read these books many times because of how short and fun they were. So, it’s not a big time commitment if you read these babies one by one.

Final note: The manga version of this series was one of the first mangas I ever read and made me fall in love with that “genre” (is genre the right word? Probably not). The pictures were beautiful, the story was magical and I’m glad it got me so into reading! Thank you Ellen for being one of my early reading addictions. Hopefully I’ll find some more newer books by her soon! Her writing just vibes well with my reading style.

I’d highly recommend these books. They are on the younger side of YA, but they are funny, sassy and absolutely adorable. My biggest con for this whole series was that it ended! I loved each book and I really want more by this author. So many YA novels take themselves way to seriously and try to make the teen be an adult. This series makes Raven be a fun, young girl who makes mistakes along the way (but she somehow gets an epic romance out of it).

Five out of five stars!

 

You can locate this book on:
Goodreads
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com
Kobo
Barnes & Noble
Indigo (Canadian Retailer)

 

If you enjoyed this book, check out another book or review you might enjoy:
#BookReview Once Upon a Vampire by Mari Mancusi
#BookReview The Coffin Club by Ellen Schreiber
#BookReview Jessica Rules the Dark Side by Beth Fantaskey

 

If you love YA, check out my top ten list for Young Adult reads!
Collection 2: #TopTens – Young Adult Part 1

 

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#BookReview Peter Green and the Unliving Academy by Angelina Allsop

 

 

There are few books that lift up my mood (and out of my reading slump!) quite like this one did!

Peter Green and the Unliving Academy was an absolute delight of a book! Fantasy, friendship and fun is all wrapped up tight into this neat, little package. If you haven’t read this book yet, what in the world are you doing?!

As the title suggests, we follow Peter Green when he goes to an “Unliving” Academy. Our lead has died and is now in the afterlife, but if you thought school stops there then you’d be wrong! Peter meets a large array of wacky characters and goes on many mischievous adventures, including but not limited too battling a werewolf teacher, dealing with ghost security guards and trying to lift a curse from upon the school. And YOU thought high school was hard…

Peter also tries to learn about himself and his past life. He knows he remembers a family, but just can’t put his finger on it. Unfortunately, it’s against the rules to find out about your past before you graduate!

I REALLY REALLY REALLY liked this book. I can’t express in words how much fun I had along the way reading it! Just because this book says ‘Young Adult’ does not mean an adult could not enjoy it! To me, it felt like a Harry Potter and the Philosopher/Sorcerer’s Stone-esque book. I would have loved to read it to a reading buddy or as a fun classroom read. The book is relatable from all angles – finding out about yourself, dealing with life’s (or death’s…) difficulties and making the right but hard decision. The book was definitely written in a way that the adult reader could enjoy it along with their kids. Therefore, it’s a family friendly book!

What were my downsides about this book?
1. Some of the plotlines could have been pushed to the second book, but it didn’t affect me all that much. I hope they are continued into the sequel because that would make those tiny, barely there plotlines make SO MUCH MORE sense.

2. Like other reviews have suggested, there were some minor grammar and spelling errors. I don’t really care, but I’m sure someone does. It didn’t pull me away from the story at all.

3. THE BOOK ENDED AND I DON’T HAVE THE SEQUEL IN MY HANDS. Yep, that’s a major downside. I got into this book and then it ended. I want moooooore!

Overall, this is a great middle-grade read! I’d highly suggest it for a fun, fantasy book to devour as soon as possible! If you liked the first two Harry Potter books then you’ll love this one! There was lots of world building and fun stories that built in this book. I truly hope a sequel comes out and more people read this book. I haven’t had this much fun in a book for a while!

Five out of five stars!

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher TCK Publishing in exchange for an honest review.

 

Check out the following links:

Purchase the book: http://geni.us/petergreenbook1m
Check out the publisher, TCK Publishing: https://www.tckpublishing.com/
TCK Publishing’s Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tckpublishing/
Their Twitter: https://twitter.com/TCKPublishing

Find out more about the author on Goodreads! or Facebook or maybe even Twitter. She also has a website too!! https://www.aaallsopbooks.com/

This book can also be found on:

Amazon.ca

Amazon.com

Barnes & Nobles

And give me a shout out on Twitter if you read this review! #briarsreviews @ReviewAlholic

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