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Review: All Eyes on Alexandra – A Beautiful Picture Book on Crane Migration

Review: All Eyes on Alexandra –

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Anna Levine, the author of the picture book All Eyes on Alexandra, graciously sent me and my daughters a print review copy of her book! First of all, the illustrations by Chiara Pasqualotto are gorgeous. I was happy to agree to review this title because the girls and I love birds so much, especially the herons and gulls that we watch when we go up and spend time at the lake during the summer. When it came in the mail, and we opened it up to look through it, the images immediately captivated us. In this bleak winter we are having, it brightened our days and made us think of sun and nature again.

My 15-year-old hopes to be a marine biologist of some sort, so the book particularly interested her in this regard, besides her love of birds and animals. It was so very interesting for her, and my 11-year-old, to learn about the migration of birds especially in another area of the world. I never knew myself that Israel was a bird’s holiday point! Did you know 500 million birds fly over Israel each year on the way to Africa? I feel it’s not only a lovely picture book to look at and read to children but a wonderful teacher’s resource whether the teacher is parent or in the classroom. It’s a definite “must buy” for libraries! It teaches about migration, weather, locations, and so much more.

Past this scientific value of course, there is the character of Alexandra, who is a crane. She is brave, bold, and adventurous, but as her family sees it, one to not always follow directions. Through Alexandra’s eyes we see the path of the birds, but also the love of their family and how they complete their journey together. However, it also teaches that though sometimes a parent or loved one might be scared of a child “flexing their wings” on their own (almost made me cry since I had let my own son do that this year moving eight hours away to go to college in Washington D.C.), you have to let them try. Alexandra succeeded far beyond their hopes!

I loved how the book showed you through the many locations and stages the bird fly in formation through, from cities to past lighthouses, some skylines and some beautiful, serene natural beauty. I loved seeing a little of Israel through the author and the illustrator’s eyes as well, without any political or religious undertones so that it can be enjoyed by everyone of all cultures.

Both of my girls loved this with comments of “Ooooo so pretty” and “Awwww so cute” and “Very cool!” Though intended for ages 4-7, anyone who appreciates art, birds, books, or beauty will love it for a keepsake. And moms of children in this age range will certainly get a lot of reading out of it.

We can always keep an eye on Alexandra with her red scarf and follow her lead. We love to travel through books at our house and this excursion with the cranes was a wonderful trip during our snowy afternoon, but we will enjoy reading it anytime of year! Highly recommended!

Come back again next week when Anna has a guest article on Oh, for the Hook of a Book! about things you can do with your children to learn about other cultures!

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About All Eyes on Alexandra –

 In All Eyes on Alexandra, young Alexandra Crane is terrible at following her family in their flying Vee. She can’t help it that the world is so full of interesting distracting sights! When it’s time for the Cranes to migrate to Israel’s Hula Valley for the winter, Alexandra is excited but her family is worried. Will Alexandra stay with the group, and what happens if a dangerous situation should arise? Might Alexandra—and the rest of the flock—discover that a bad follower can sometimes make a great leader?

Based on the true story of Israel’s annual crane migration.

Print Length: 32 Pages

Genre: Children’s Picture Book

Publisher: Kar-Ben Pub

ISBN-10: 1512444391

ISBN-13: 978-1512444391

All Eyes on Alexandra is available to purchase on AmazonBarnes and NobleTarget and Thrift Books.

Author Anna Levine, Biography –

Author photoAnna Levine is an award-winning children’s book author. Like Alexandra Crane, the character in her latest picture book, she loves to explore new worlds.

Born in Canada, Anna has lived in the US and Europe.  She now lives in Israel, where she writes and teaches.

You can find Anna Levine online at –

Author website: http://www.annalevine.org/

Twitter: @LevineAnna 

Instagram: @booksfromanna 

About the Illustrator, Chiara Pasqualotto,

artistChiara Pasqualotto was born in Padua, in northern Italy, currently teaches illustration and drawing classes to children and adults, in particular in Padua during the summer at the Scuola Internazionale di Comics and in Rome.

Since 2008 she’s been living in Rome and working with illustration professionally: her first picture book, Mine, All Mine! was published in 2009 by Boxer Books (UK), since then she published with Oxford University Press, Giunti, Terranuova and some American publishers (Paraclete Press, Tyndale, LearningAZ, Kar-Ben Publisher).

You can find Chiara Pasqualotto online at –

Artist website – https://romeartweek.com/en/artists/?id=1495&ida=1004

Blog: http://chiarapasqualotto.blogspot.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/clairepaspage/

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If you’d like to read more reviews of this book or some articles by the author about fun things to do with your kids, check out some more of the stops of her online tour.

December 3rd @ The Muffin

What goes better in the morning than a muffin? Make sure you visit WOW’s blog today and read an interview with the author and enter for a chance to win a copy of the book All Eyes on Alexandra.

muffin.wow-womenonwriting.com

December 5th @ Cassandra’s Writing World

Visit Cassandra’s blog where she shares her thoughts about Anna Levine’s picture book All Eyes on Alexandra.

https://cassandra-mywritingworld.blogspot.com/

December 6th @ Break Even Books

Visit Erik’s blog where you can read Anna Levine’s guest post about how to jog your inspiration.

https://breakevenbooks.com/

December 7th @ Coffee with Lacey

Grab some coffee and visit Lacey’s blog where you can read her review of Anna Levine’s picture book All Eyes on Alexandra.

http://coffeewithlacey.wordpress.com

December 8th @ Author Anthony Avina’s Blog

Visit Anthony Avina’s blog today where he joins in the fun of celebrating and shares information about Anna Levine’s book All Eyes on Alexandra.

http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

December 8th @ Christy’s Cozy Corners

Visit Christy’s blog and cozy up while you read her review of Anna Levine’s picture book All Eyes on Alexandra.

https://christyscozycorners.com/

December 9th @ Coffee with Lacey

Visit Lacey’s blog again where you can read Anna Levine’s guest post about designing your ideal writing spot.

http://coffeewithlacey.wordpress.com

December 9th @ Christy’s Cozy Corner

Visit Christy’s blog where you can read Anna Levine’s blog post about how she decided to use crane’s in her story.

https://christyscozycorners.com/

December 10th @ Thoughts in Progress

Visit Pamela’s blog where you can read Anna Levine’s guest post about how authors use anthropomorphic animals.

http://masoncanyon.blogspot.com/

December 11th @ Read. Write. Sparkle. Coffee.

Make sure you visit Jeanie’s blog today and read her thoughts about Anna Levine’s book All Eyes on Alexandra.

http://www.readwritesparklecoffee.com/

December 12th @ Author Anthony Avina Blog

Visit Anthony Avina’s blog where he interviews Anna Levine, author of All Eyes on Alexandra.

http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

December 13th @ Read. Write. Sparkle. Coffee.

Make sure you visit Jeanie’s blog today and read Anna Levine’s guest post about building a theme day around a picture book.

http://www.readwritesparklecoffee.com/

December 13th @ Oh for the Hook of a Book

Visit Erin’s blog where she shares her thoughts on Anna Levine’s book All Eyes on Alexandra.

www.hookofabook.wordpress.com

December 14th @ Growing with Science Blog

Be sure to visit Roberta’s blog and read her review of Anna Levine’s book All Eyes on Alexandra as well as read Anna’s guest post about five fun bird-themed activities.

http://growingwithscience.com/

December 14th @ Wrapped in Foil

Visit Roberta’s blog today where Anna Levine’s book All Eyes on Alexandra gets featured on the weekly STEM Friday post (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math books!).

http://blog.wrappedinfoil.com/

December 15th @ A Storybook World

Visit Deirdra’s blog where she features Anna Levine’s book All Eyes on Alexandra in a spotlight post.

http://www.astorybookworld.com/

December 17th @ World of My Imagination

Stop by Nicole’s blog today where you can read her review of Anna Levine’s book All Eyes on Alexandra.

http://theworldofmyimagination.blogspot.com

December 18th @ Oh, for the Hook of a Book

Visit Erin’s blog again where you can read Anna Levine’s blog post featuring activities for young children to explore their world.

www.hookofabook.wordpress.com

December 19th @ Cassandra’s Writing World

Visit Cassandra’s blog again where you can read Anna Levine’s blog post about naming your characters.

https://cassandra-mywritingworld.blogspot.com

December 19th @ Linda’s Blog

Make sure you visit Linda’s blog today where you can read her thoughts about Anna Levine’s book All Eyes on Alexandra.

https://www.lindaleekane.com/blog

December 20th @ Word Magic: All About Books 

Visit Fiona’s blog where you can read her review of Anna Levine’s book All Eyes on Alexandra.

http://fionaingramauthor.blogspot.com/

December 21st @ Bring on Lemons

Make sure you grab some lemonade and stop by Crystal’s blog today where she reviews Anna Levine’s book All Eyes on Alexandra.

http://bringonlemons.blogspot.com/

December 27th @ Linda’s Blog

Visit Linda’s blog again where you can read her interview with author Anna Levine.

https://www.lindaleekane.com/blog

December 28th @ Beverley A. Baird’s Blog

Visit Beverley’s blog today you can read her review of Anna Levine’s book All Eyes on Alexandra.

https://beverleyabaird.wordpress.com/

December 31st @ Strength 4 Spouses

Visit Wendi’s blog and read Anna Levine’s guest post on learning about families and different cultures.

https://strength4spouses.blog/

January 2nd @ Author Anthony Avina’s Blog

Visit author Anthony Avina’s blog where he shares his thoughts about Anna Levine’s picture book All Eyes on Alexandra. 

http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

January 3rd @ Beverley A. Baird’s Blog

Visit Beverley’s blog again where you can read Anna Levine’s blog post about getting into the head of your middle-grade characters.

https://beverleyabaird.wordpress.com/

January 4th @ Author Anthony Avina’s Blog

Visit author Anthony Avina’s blog again where you can read Anna Levine’s blog post about using fiction to write non-fiction.

http://www.authoranthonyavinablog.com

January 7th @ Strength 4 Spouses Blog

Visit Wendi’s blog again where you can read her thoughts about the book All Eyes on Alexandra by Anna Levine.

https://strength4spouses.blog/

 

 

 

 

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Don’t Call Me Christina Kringle by Chris Grabenstein: Endearing Holiday Ebook!

Christina KringleThis cute e-book by award-winning author Chris Grabenstein really embraces the spirit of Christmas–a time when circumstances can be transformed, outlooks improved, and miracles can happen. This was a great book for middle reader children that shows them how to overcome loss, even if it is of a parent, and that a sprinkle of magic can many times bring humor and happiness back into life.

Ten-year-old Christina’s Christmas is made brighter with the assitance of tiny little elves. Who doesn’t like elves? This story reminded me alot of one of my favorite fairy tales, The Elves and the Shoemaker. If your child reads ebooks (which you can read Kindle versions on many devices now with the app), then I would highly recommend this if you are looking for a fresh and endearing Christmas vacation read.

Chris Grabenstein’s stories are always funny and have a great human or entertaining element to them. In this one, he truly also takes on overcoming odds and how sometimes we all need a little bit of help and support!

My girls, ages 10 and 6, are going to love reading this book over their break from school and I am excited to show it to them. I think it will be easier to read this size book on the Kindle for them even if they do generally prefer print. Open Road Media has some great digital choices for children that supplements their regular library and this holiday title is a great addition.

Don’t Call Me Christina Kringle, Synopsis~

This December, a girl who hates Christmas is in for the surprise of her life.

Ten-year-old Christina Lucci absolutely despises everything about Christmas. The carols, the eggnog, the decorations—and most of all, Santa Claus. And for good reason: It all reminds her of her firefighter father, who loved the holiday season but died on the job last Christmas.

For Christina, no Christmas will ever be merry again. To make things worse, this year, her grandfather’s shoe repair shop is failing. Bills keep piling up and the bank is ready to seize the shop. What Christina needs is a Christmas miracle.

With the holidays fast approaching, Christina’s miracle comes in the form of magical brownies, spunky little creatures who just happen to be great at repairing shoes. These tiny helpers have the power to turn Christina’s whole life around—and maybe even get her back in the Christmas spirit.

To purchase e-book:  www.openroadmedia.com/dont-call-me-christina-kringle

Chris Grabenstein, Biography~

img-chris-grabenstein-author-photo_180209318454Chris Grabenstein is author of critically acclaimed adult and young-adult thrillers. Winner
of two Anthony and three Agatha Awards, Chris writes fast-paced and fun page-turners for children and adults. He’s also a playwright and screenwriter not to mention a former advertising executive and improvisational comedian. Sometimes he sleeps.

He lives in New York City with his wife and his pets.

To see all his amazing book titles, including those with James Patterson and his newest release, go to: www.chrisgrabenstein.com/kids/

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“What Does the President Look Like?” by Jane Hampton Cook is Launched: How Time has Changed How We View Our Presidents

Kane/Miller publishers just launched a new book fittingly on President’s Day, called “What does the President Look Like?” by Jane Hampton Cook.  As a former White House webmaster under the George W. Bush administration, the author has penned several other books and she loves writing about American History. I myself can’t wait to get my hands on this new information, collector picture book for my son who is enthralled with history and our Presidents!

*I’m inserting this review just the next day as the fabulous author Jane Cook has allowed me to view her book!  The book is even more special than what I could have imagined for children.  The content is so interesting, as it follows chronologically the evolution of the use of imaging to present U.S. Presidents to their People through oil paintings to the use of printing, to silent and sound movies, and finally to digital cameras and President Obama being the first President to have a smart phone in office. The way the information is presented has such a historical feel, with each page having text presented on little hand-drawn pieces of paper. She even includes a box on historical facts on each page, which my 11-year-old son said was his favorite part because he loves facts, especially surrounding Presidents. My daughter loved the illustrations, drawn by Adam Ziskie. They were original, creative and fresh with all the people having extra long legs which created depth and humor to the story. The colors were muted to give the book a faded and historical feel. My kids and I totally enjoyed this book tonight together. It is the PERFECT book for teachers to add a new kind of spin to teaching about the Presidents through history, adding along the sociological element of how technological advancements have and are affecting politics and culture.  A great addition also to a home library to supplement your child’s learning. My kids give in a two-thumbs up each, and so do I!

I do represent Kane/Miller books as an independent educational consultant, but that is just because I LOVE the books they are publishing and the authors they represent. I am very happy to introduce this new book to you! What a great new find for your history buff. Read more about the book below:

Product description:
What would you do if the President of the United States visited your town? Grab your digital camera, of course ! You’ve seen the president’s picture on TV at least a million times. But wait. Before YouTube, television, and cameras, how did people know what the president looked like? From paintings to political cartoons, newsreels and simple photography, you will discover how the American people came to know what the president looked like and how technology changed what we see and how we see it.

CBN did a news story on the book, check it out here: http://www.cbn.com/cbnnews/us/2011/February/Author-Explores-Medias-Role-in-Presidential-History/

  • Reading level: Ages 4-8
  • Hardcover: 36 pages
  • Publisher: Kane/Miller Book Publishers (February 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1935279637
  • ISBN-13: 978-1935279631
  • Product Dimensions: 11.7 x 8.7 x 0.3 inches
  • Order today at my Usborne Books and More online bookstore: www.ubah.com/z2837 and when you get there put the title in the search to pop it up and purchase!! Or you can message me (hookofabook@hotmail.com) where paypal is accepted! I also sell to libraries and school, please inquire.

    About the Jane Hampton Cook, the author:

    Jane Hampton Cook makes history memorable and relevant to today’s news, current events, and modern-day life. A public speaker and frequent media guest, Jane is the author of six books, including her newest for kids What Does the President Look Like? (Feb. 2011).

    She served former President George W. Bush as a webmaster for five years, including two in the White House and three in the Texas governor’s office. She loves writing about American history.  Benjamin Franklin once quipped “If you would not be forgotten as soon as you are dead and rotten, either write things worth reading or do the things worth writing.”

    Jane hopes each new book is increasingly worth the reading, each speech worth the hearing, and each TV segment worth remembering. A member of the National Press Club in DC, she lives with her husband and two young sons in Vienna, Virginia. For more information on Jane or her books, please visit www.janecook.com.

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    Filed under New Books I've Found, Usborne and Kane/Miller News