Win a Winner!
Writers & Photographers
Berlitz Summer Camp
by Ronna Mandel
By Mark Pett and Gary Rubinstein, illustrated by Mark Pett
Sourcebooks Jabberwocky, $14.99, ages 4-8
It’s hard work being perfect – not that I know of course, but I can just imagine. And when you never botch up like the main character of this book, Beatrice Bottomwell, people come to expect you will never make a mistake, never forget to do your homework, mismatch your socks or, horror-of-all-horrors, be unprepared for the school talent show juggling act! Pett and Rubinstein’s story and Pett’s totally in sync artwork come together to share an important message: it’s OK to try your best, but when it becomes all consuming and nothing less is satisfying, more is lost than gained!
All that striving for perfection can certainly create a lot of stress. It gets to the point for 9-year-old Beatrice that, after one near miss with an egg while baking, she starts avoiding activities for fear of failure. While Beatrice’s friends and even her younger brother could care less about falling down while ice skating or playing piano the wrong way, Beatrice’s worrying about making a mistake makes her feel ill until … she actually does make a major mistake in front of a packed school auditorium during her juggling performance in the talent show. What results is anything but a disaster! In fact, Beatrice, and the audience, end up finding the whole thing so hilarious, that from that moment forward Beatrice is surprised to find out how absolutely wonderful and rewarding it is to stop trying so hard and just be herself.
Ronna also recommends …
• The Crown on Your Head, written and illustrated by Nancy Tillman, Feiwel & Friends, $16.99, ages 4-8.
• Chihuawolf, written by Charlee Ganny and illustrated by Nicola Slater, Sourcebooks Jabberwocky, $6.99, ages 9-12
• My Big Mouth, written and illustrated by Peter Hannan, Scholastic, $16.99, ages 10 and up.
Find more reviews of children’s books, plus contests, on the “Good Reads With Ronna” blog at LAParent.com, and on Twitter @goodreadsronna.
Brave Rooney by Gerry Renert|
Kids of all ages, despite their ranking on the playground or sports field, can relate to Gerry Renert’s inspiring e-book about Captain Majestic Memorial School, where every kid is a superhero – except the new kid, Rooney.
Engineer Ari and the Hanukkah Mishap|
This story is more than just a train tale. It’s also about friendship and miracles.
Holiday Picks From Good Reads With Ronna|
Book bloggers Ronna Mandel and Debbie Glade have assembled some recommended books to consider during your last-minute shopping this season. Click here for full reviews of all these titles.
Women in Blue or Gray: True Stories From Both Sides of the American Civil War|
Jim Weiss captures this period in time for us in a fascinating way, paying tribute to the women who served their country, some behind enemy lines, long before women could vote, let alone volunteer for the army.
Shop Talk: Jewelry For Mom|
This Mother's Day, treat mom to a bit of sparkle and shine with jewelry to fit every budget.
Cool Baseball Necklace|
Get your kids a Cool Baseball Necklace ($15, www.CoolBaseballNecklace.com) to jazz up their look on the field this season. The stitched leather necklaces come in yellow, white and pink and are available in three different lengths.
Leave it to moms to create the new one-stop, has-it-all, does everything Shade Wagon ($499, www.theshadewagonstore.com) from Beach Masters.
Marshall Armstrong is New to Our School|
Written and illustrated by David Mackintosh Abrams, $16.95, ages 4-8