Top 5 Tuesday #66: Books on My Wishlist

Top 5 Tuesday is a weekly meme created by Shanah, the Bionic Book Worm, and now hosted by Meeghan at Meeghan Reads.


This week’s topic:

Top 5 books on my wishlist

(No matter what you celebrate in December, be it Christmas, Hanukkah, Hogmanay, Jolabokaflod, Koliada, Kwanzaa, Krampusnacht, Nikoldjan, Pancha Ganapati, St Lucia Day, St Nicholas Day, Winter Solstice, Yule, Erastide, Hogswatch, Festivus, Kaldoran, Snoggletog, Yulemas, Decemberween or Chrismukkah, tell us what books are on the top of your wishlist!!)

I have several books on my wishlist, but here are the ones that are at the top.

The Deep by Mayur Vayeda & Tushar Vayeda (illus.)

It’s a beautifully crafted picture book created using the Warli style of painting. The creators are from the indigenous Warli community in western India. I believe the book is about their experience travelling from the familiarity of their home all the way to Japan, and it also explores how water connects all life.

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Three Illustrated Books by Akiko Miyakoshi

After reading the three books by Miyakoshi below, I now consider myself a fan of her work. I love her illustrations. They have a coziness to them that greatly appeals to me. I also like her stories. The ones here are charming, relatable, and fantastic. They do a great job depicting a child’s voice, and I had a wonderful time reading them, although I’m not a fan of the endings. They tend to fall a little short for me. Anyway, here are more details on what I read.


The Tea Party in the Woods by Akiko Miyakoshi (illus.), transl. from the Japanese by Kids Can Press

Genre

Children Fantasy

Series

n/a

Pubbed

2010

(Goodreads)


My thoughts

I began my introduction to Miyakoshi’s work by reading The Tea Party in the Woods, a charming story about a girl who befriends animals she met at a tea party in the woods.

Because it had snowed all night, Kikko’s father decides to visit grandma’s house, which is on the other side of the woods, to clear the walk for her. But he forgot the pie for grandma. Believing she can quickly catch up to her father, Kikko decides to follow his footsteps in the snow to take the pie to grandma. But on the way through the woods, Kikko arrives at a tea party with a bunch of animals in attendance.

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Two Illustrated Books on the Ramayana

So a couple months ago, I read two children’s books that retell the classic Hindu tale, the Ramayana. My knowledge of Hinduism is VERY limited — I only know the names of a few of the gods — so when I picked up Ramayana: Divine Loophole (which I read first), I did so assuming the it was a children’s fantasy book. It wasn’t until I started reading that I learned it’s an essential part of Hindu mythology.


Ramayana: Divine Loophole by Sanjay Patel (illus.)

Genre

MG Classic; Mythology

Series

n/a

Pubbed

2010

From Goodreads

Artist and veteran Pixar animator Sanjay Patel lends a lush, whimsical illustration style and lighthearted voice to one of Hindu mythology’s best-loved and most enduring tales. Teeming with powerful deities, love-struck monsters, flying monkey gods, magic weapons, demon armies, and divine love, Ramayana tells the story of Rama, a god-turned-prince, and his quest to rescue his wife Sita after she is kidnapped by a demon king.

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Illustrated Books: “Oona” & “The Widow’s Broom”

I love picture books and can’t get enough of them. Here are two I read back in May for Wyrd & Wonder, a celebration of all things fantasy. One is about a little mermaid searching for treasure and the other is about a widow who acquired a witch’s broom.


Oona by Kelly DiPucchio, illus. by Raissa Figueroa

Genre

Children’s Fantasy

Series

n/a

Pubbed

2021

From Goodreads

Meet Oona. The big sea’s littlest mischief maker.

She and her best friend, Otto, love to search for treasure . . . but often find trouble instead.

Messy trouble.

Tricky trouble.

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Illustrated Books: “The Book with No Pictures,” “Hello Lighthouse,” and “Spot & Dot”

I read these three picture books for the OWLs readathon back in April. It had been a while since I’d read a picture book and since I had one out from the library and many unread on my bookshelves, I decided to give in and read some of my favorite types of books.

These three are very different from each other. Spot & Dot is a wordless picture book and the second in a series, while The Book With No Pictures has nothing but words. However, Hello Lighthouse is like your typical picture book that uses both pictures and words to tell the story.


The Book With No Pictures by B.J. Novak

Genre:

Children Humor

Pubbed:

2014

Goodreads summary:

At once disarmingly simple and ingeniously imaginative, The Book With No Pictures inspires laughter every time it is opened, creating a warm and joyous experience to share — and introducing young children to the powerful idea that the written word can be an unending source of mischief and delight. (Goodreads)

My thoughts:

Of the three, The Book with No Pictures is my absolute favorite. Oh my gosh! It’s charming, it’s simple, it’s funny. It was a delight to read and is even more fun when read aloud. I didn’t have anyone to read aloud to, so I read aloud to myself. 😥

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“Cinderella: or The Little Glass Slipper” by Charles Perrault, illus. by Camille Rose Garcia

As a kid, my favorite fairytale was Cinderella. I would read the story over and over and would even write what I now know to be fanfic of it. I love stories about good people who are downtrodden and mistreated but are able to escape, work towards, or be rescued and carried off to a better life. For some reason, I strongly related to this. Life in Jamaica wasn’t bad, but it was (and is) hard, and I would often dream of the day my parents would come rescue me and carry me off to live with them in the fabled land of America, where anything is possible.

Now that I’m living in America and saddled with student loans, I now dream of the day that I win the lotto/find a long-lost rich uncle/get a huge raise that will help me pay off my student loans quickly.

My love for Cinderella did not fade over the years. It grew stronger. And although I hardly ever reread the fairytale, I easily fall for its retellings, like Cinder by Marissa Meyer, or stories that have characters who allude to Cinderella in some way, like Harry Potter. So, I was beyond excited when Millie from Milliebot Reads featured this edition of the fairytale in one of her Judging a Book by Its Cover posts. I knew right then that I had to purchase it. The illustrations and book design called to me. And when the NEWTs Magical Readathon came around, I took the opportunity to finally reread one of my favorite fairytales.

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“Flotsam” by David Wiesner

This will be a week filled with reviews of illustrated books and comic books. Putting it that way makes it sound like I’ll dump loads of reviews on here this week, but it’ll be just 3 of them. For me, that’s a lot since I usually manage to churn out only a few reviews every couple weeks. I like to pair up my reviews of illustrated books and comics, but I only read one illustrated book. So here is its lonesome review.


Flotsam by David Wiesner (illus.)

Genre:

Fantasy

Pubbed:

January 2006

Goodreads summary:

A bright, science-minded boy goes to the beach equipped to collect and examine flotsam — anything floating that has been washed ashore. Bottles, lost toys, small objects of every description are among his usual finds. But there’s no way he could have prepared for one particular discovery: a barnacle-encrusted underwater camera, with its own secrets to share … and to keep. 

Flotsam

My Thoughts:

Flotsam is a wonderful children’s picture book with quite an imaginative story that’s told without words. I think I’m leaning toward such books. The absence of words draws my attention to other details and makes me focus on other ways we communicate.

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Top 5 Wednesday #24: Kids Books for Adults

It seems that I have a trend here of posting these memes things late because here’s my Top 5 Wednesday post on Thursday. Then again, my whole week has been skewed since Monday felt like Sunday, which made me think Tuesday was Monday, so all this can be excused since I’m confused about what day it is.

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme created by GingerReadsLainey and now managed by Sam from Thoughts on Tomes. For more information on this meme, visit the Goodreads group.

This week’s topic:

Children’s books to read as an adult

Well, here are 5 children’s books I’d recommend to adults. This will be a combination of middle-grade novels and picture books, which are usually the forms of children’s books I consume.

For the artist…

Nightlights by Lorena Alvarez (illus.)

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Judging A Book By Its Cover: Ramayana

Check out Milliebot Reads’s recent post on the art in Ramayana: Divine Loophole by Sanjay Patel.

Milliebot Reads

This is my weekly post where I highlight and appreciate cover designs and the general physical appearance of books. We all judge book covers to some extent. I can’t say that I’ve ever decided against a book with terrible cover art if I liked the sound of the plot, but I do purchase special editions of books and multiple editions of books based on their cover art. If book covers didn’t matter, publishers wouldn’t put out so many beautiful editions!

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“The Ice Dragon” by George R.R. Martin, illus. by Luis Royo

The Ice DragonWhy did I read this book? Because by January 26 I was one book away from having read 5 books in the month and my competitive side kicked in and pushed me to grab something quick so I could round out the month with 5 books. Who am I competing with, you ask. Well, I have no idea. But that Goodreads reading goal I had set for myself at the beginning of the year sure niggles me.

Quick summary:

George R.R. Martin’s Ice Dragon is an illustrated children’s book set in an imaginary world about a young girl’s friendship with a legendary creature. It’s a bildungsroman since we follow the protagonist, Adara, as she interacts with the fabled Ice Dragon throughout her life.

Adara was born during one of the fiercest winters in her land and is considered a winter child both because of when she was born as well as her constitution. She is withdrawn, keeps to herself, and hardly exhibits any warmth toward others. Even her skin is cool to the touch. There is conflict between Adara’s country and the land in the north. As Adara gets older, the tension increases between the two lands and the war draws closer to Adara’s village. But with the help of the Ice Dragon, Adara just might be able to stop the war’s progression.

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