Monday, December 10, 2012

Magic Monday - The Magic of Lights and Sounds

Robert Heidbreder (Author), Lori Joy Smith (Illustrator)
Kids Can Press
Published Sep 1, 2012

The simple joys of a child’s day are captured in happy, onomatopoeic rhymes. The book has 30 fun-filled rhymes complemented by bright, colorful, and playful illustrations. The poems cover activities like waking up, watching clouds, playing tag, and back into bed with everything else in between. 

Small children will love these being read-aloud and so will older noisemakers (like my six-and-three-quarters year old daughter who always enjoys reading our loud all the noise and sound words in books).  It was amazing to see how every activity can be conveyed in words with sounds :)

Rating: B+
Reading Level: 3 to 6 years
Reread Level: 4/5

Lighting Our World: A Year of Celebrations
by Catherine Rondina and Jacqui Oakley
Kids Can Press
Sep 1, 2012

Light - in so many different forms - is a very vital part of many celebrations around the world. Every candle on the birthday cake makes it ever more special. The lamps lit in and around the house and the fireworks during the festival of Diwali make this occasion even more festive – the name itself means row of lights. Light, in its every form, brings feelings of warmth, victory, happiness, peace, and joy. This is reflected in every page of this book.

In this book, Rondina uses the voices of kids everywhere to speak about their local celebrations that involve light. Religious, cultural, or secular; old or new,   – all celebrations are included in this book. The book is arranged month by month and as we traverse through the calendar, we travel the world through this book celebrating the wonderful occasions and enjoy the delightful lights – be they lanterns, lamps, candles, or fireworks. From Up Helly Aa in January to Kwanzaa celebrated in December, from Scotland to India to the US, the voices of the children lend themselves to make the celebrations interesting and relevant to young readers. The introduction and glossary contain useful information too.

It was fun exploring the world through this book. I love introducing my children to various cultures and traditions, and teaching them to appreciate the uniqueness, the differences, and the similarities that exist among them and this book does a great job in helping me with it. They also made the kids and me curious to learn more about many of the celebrations here.
I would also recommend this for class reading.

The illustrations in the book are a class by themselves – as art and as perfect companions to the text in the book. Each page has vivid, festive illustrations that seem to jump out of the page asking us to join in the celebrations. 

Rating: A
Reading Level: 7 and up
Reread Level: 4/5 (There would be not much reason to read the book again once we learn about the different festivals but I am sure I would peep into it each month to see what lies ahead that month and for the illustrations themselves)

Disclaimer:Thank you to NetGalley for sending me a digital review copy of all books reviewed today. I was not compensated for my review. My thoughts on these books were in no way influenced by the author or publicist. They are my personal opinions formed when I read the books.

The books above go towards the weekly meme at Jen and Kellee's - and What are you reading? From Picture Books to YA

For What are you reading? @Book Journey
Completed reading:
Noisy Poems for a Busy Day (digital RC - review here)
Lighting Our World: A Year of Celebrations (digital RC - review here)
Two and Twenty Dark Tales (Digital ARC - review coming Wednesday)

Currently reading:
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Secret of the Nagas by Amish (Personal copy - this has been waiting for me to get back to page 98))
Will You Please be Quiet, Please? By Raymond Carver (digital eBook borrowed from
Shakespeare on Toast by Ben Crystal (digital RC - a brilliant book but the bard awaits patiently to be perused)
The Fox by D.H.Lawrence (eBook borrowed from

Next on my list to read:
Mainly books to complete as many of my challenges as I can.

This week at Musing Mondays over at Should Be Reading, the question asked is:
What was the last book you could not finish and why?
Shantaram– by Gregory David Roberts - not because it is not good. Indeed, it is the opposite of not-good. It is awesome. I started reading this book on the plane back to the US from India a couple of years ago but could not read much as I was travelling with the kids – just me with the two of them as DH had not made that trip to India. And when we landed, life caught me, other books  (smaller, easier to read) caught my interest and this book landed in my TBR file.  I am definitely getting around to reading this, come 2013.
There are many other books I could list here – but I mostly do not finish reading them because I had to return them to the library/digital library and have not been able to borrow them again for whatever reason.

Monday Mingle over at Tough Cookie Mommy - This is a place for networking:) So please link up and follow other blogs on this blog hop/linky on Google Friend Connect, Facebook, or Twitter.

Do you enjoy your current job (or your last job)?
I enjoyed my last job and also my current job - one of the main reasons is the people i work with. The friends I make at work are a big part of my life and make every day at work better. No matter how the day has been - challenging or boring, filled with a humongous amount of myriad tasks or monotonous - having a friend at work (who does the same things you do) to talk about it and understand the joys and frustrations makes it enjoyable.


  1. I'm glad you stopped by my blog so I could discover yours. My 6 year old girl just loves to read, and she inspires me to read more. I love the idea of the Lighting Our World book. I'll definitely be back.

  2. Your reason for not finishing a book is easy to have happen. Here is my post:

  3. Sometimes life just gets in the way - even of an awesome book. my MM

    1. thank you.. it is true.. that is why there are many partly finished books on my TBR too

  4. I'm trying to read books to finish up challenges too - especially my own! Lol - hope you have a great week.

    1. thank you:) one more week to go now and i still am catching up

  5. I'm curious about your reaction to the Raymond Carver. The title has me curious - who is talking and who are they talking to???


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