One Half from the East by Nadia Hashimi is an emotional coming of age children’s novel. The protagonist Obayda’s family has issues. Her father has lost one of his legs in a bomb explosion, forcing their family to move away from their home to a small village in Kabul. Her father almost never leaves his room. One day, Obayda’s aunt has an idea to bring the family luck. She dresses Obayda as a boy, a bacha posh. Now she is Obayd. Soon, she meets another bacha posh, and it changes everything. They’re free to explore the village on their own without any restrictions. However, their transformation won’t last forever, and they must figure out a way to make their freedom last.
Eden Moore is on track to become the valedictorian of her high school class, despite the fact that she’s grown up in a trailer park with her often out-of-work father and stepmother. Since her birth mother left her when she was just a child, Eden’s only ever had one goal: to leave her small town and life there behind.
Her classmate Ash Gupta has never quite understood how Eden, with her sharp and sarcastic nature, could possibly become valedictorian. But when the two of them are thrown together to complete a class assignment, they begin to get to know each other for the first time, and Ash recognizes her intelligence and depth.
Who is Santa? opens with Santa and Mrs. Claus living in a place called the North Forest. The time frame is not specified other than to indicate that this was a long time ago. Santa and Mrs. Claus are fairly well to do and so she spends her days cooking, baking, and making candy. He spends his time making toys. Piles and piles of fabulous toys that he stockpiles in the outbuildings of their family farm. The toys serve no purpose other than the joy Santa gets when he makes them. They are precious to him and no one is allowed to touch them. Eventually, Mrs. Claus is able to make Santa see how wonderful it feels to give the toys as gifts and his goal becomes to give away all of his beloved toys to the children in the North Forest.
With the holiday season finally here, it’s that time of the year where everyone is discovering what gifts to get the little ones. Well, author Kallie George put together the perfect Christmas package, The Lost Gift. Prepare for an adventure about service, giving and the essence of joy!
The Lost Gift is bound to reach immense success upon its release. It’s an adorable, fun and interactive book between the reader and the children. In my opinion, anyone who has the opportunity to read this book is going to be floored with the story line, the characters and the message.
For many people, reading books tends to relieve stress. I am one of those who will devour a novel because it takes my mind off things going on in my world around me. But for others, they take the route of actually being able to scribble in their books. I know, not what I would do, but when you have a book as pretty as this one? Oh, and while it has devotions and text, it is, also, a coloring book!
This strikingly beautiful adult coloring book is titled, Christmas Quiet. Contained within is a 25 day devotional, along with coloring pages. The authors take a piece of Scripture and then writes up a small word of encouragement or inspiration. This is leading up to Christmas so all the little pieces deal with the advent.
I’ve always wanted to know more about astrology and horoscopes–not because I believe in star signs, but because I thought the subject to be interesting. Romina Russell’s Zodiac takes astrology to a whole new level by basing an entire civilization off of star signs and constellations. And she does a pretty darn good job at doing so, I might add.
Zodiac takes place in the distant future where humanity has left our solar system and earth for reasons long forgotten and now lives in the Houses of the Zodiac. The story centers on Rhoma Grace, a 16-year-old student from House Cancer.
“Unfold your heart. Sharpen your ears. And never say no to the world when it asks you to dance.”
Furthermore is Tahereh Mafi’s break into the world of middle grade fiction. Alice Queensmeadow is a twelve-year-old who must travel to an unknown land in order to save her father—the one person, she believes, that loves her completely colorless self (a bit of a big deal in her home of Ferenwood). Alice’s father has been missing for over three years having left town with only a ruler. Alice must complete the father-finding quest with Oliver, who just happens to be her worst enemy (or so she thinks), and the pair must overcome many obstacles on their journey—avoid being eaten by the citizens of Furthermore, broken rulers, stolen time, and miscommunication with each other.
Happy Birthday to You! by Michelle Adams highlights the story of a little boy who wakes up to his birthday. The book opens with the boy waking up (he seems to be a happy grade-schooler), and his family is getting ready for the festivities. The story progresses on to show the party moving forward, happy kids coming over to hit the piñata, share cake and presents, and finally to the boy saying goodbye to his friends. The top right center of the board book has a button to push that plays the “Happy Birthday” song, and the last thick page of the book offers a spot for putting in your little one’s own photo, to personalize this book as his / her very own.
Goodnight Bob tells the story of a little guy named Bob, who is supposed to be going to sleep. Bob is apparently afraid of creepy shadows that inhabit his bedroom, walls, windows and closets. He therefore sleeps with a trusty flashlight next to him in the bed. When he hears a strange noise, or sees eyes in the dark, the reader has to turn the page to find out what innocuous object is really there (a nice mouse, or a friendly cat or even a smiling Bigfoot, who all say “Goodnight Bob” to Bob).