(Review) ABC is For Circus

TITLE: ABC is for Circus
AUTHOR: Patrick Hruby
PAGES: 56 (chunky board book)
PUB DATE: November 15, 2010
SOURCE: I received an ARC of the book from NETGALLEY. I downloaded it onto my KOBO.

ABC IS FOR CIRCUS celebrates the colorful and festive world of the circus through each letter of the alphabet. Young children will enjoy memorizing letters and words like A is for Acrobats, B is for Big Top, and C is for Calliope in this imaginative chunky board book. ABC IS FOR CIRCUS is an awesome addition to our artist-centric line of ABC books and is sure to delight an audience of children and adults alike


Los Angeles-based illustrator Patrick Hruby grew up in a log cabin within an Idaho forest. As a young boy he dreamt of running away to join the circus and become a trapeze artist. Eventually, however, he grew up to study math and physics before attending the renowned Art Center College of Design and pursuing a career as an illustrator. His interest in the geometry of nature is central to his work. Influenced by artists and designers such as Charley Harper, Paul Rand, and Mary Blair, Hruby has gone on to develop his own stunning and modern aesthetic.

When I saw this on Netgalley I just wanted to get it and share with Michael. Sadly the only one thing I don’t like about the book on the KOBO is that is black and white and this is a book you really need to see in color.

We went back to the computer and read the book. The illustrations are absolutely stunning in color. Michael thought that they were simple, colorful and attention grabbing. (his words)

What a great book for young kids who love the circus and want to learn the alphabet. I think the illustrations will draw them in.

I have to say that Michael is now reading on his own and I absolutely love listening to him read. While he was reading this one he did an amazing job.

Even though we are sort of passed the board book stage I think I would actually pick up this book to add to our collection.

This book is out today.

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
If you are reading this on a blog or website other than Cindy’s Love Of Books or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.

(Review) A Homemade Christmas

TITLE: A Homemade Christmas: Creative Ideas for an Earth-Friendly, Frugal, Festive Holiday
AUTHOR: Tina Barseghian
PUBLISHER: Harlequin
PUB DATE: September 2010
PAGES: 128
SOURCE: I received an ARC of the book from NETGALLEY and downloaded it onto my KOBO.

Making something with your own hands—whether it’s a plate of just-baked cookies, a handcrafted stocking, a homemade wreath, or a hand-folded origami ornament—is a great way to connect with the true meaning of Christmas.

From holiday decorating to gift giving, A Homemade Christmas is chock-full of projects, recipes, tips, and helpful hints that are guaranteed to add a homemade touch to your holiday season. Open this charming volume to any page and discover a wealth of practical and easy-to-accomplish ideas for a homemade holiday:

• create personal, distinctive holiday greetings

• deck the halls with festive, handmade trimmings

• cook simple but memorable homemade dishes

• make unique, handcrafted gifts

• share the joy of the season with friends and family

Packed with inspiration and how-tos for ideas that are family-friendly and eco-conscious, festive and meaningful, A Homemade Christmas will put homemade back into your holidays!

I have to admit that I am surprised that I am actually going to be making my first Christmas book post. I find it hard to believe that there is only like 65 days till Christmas and Halloween isn’t even here yet.

You can tell that Christmas is coming because I am starting to see commericals on tv, the advertising in the paper is happening, the stores are starting to put out their Christmas decorations and items and the once good kids tv channels are now becoming bombarded with all kinds of toy commericals.

I think everyone tries to get a head of the game to make Christmas a stress free holiday. I know I do and its about this time that I begin to start my Christmas shopping. I like to be done my shopping come my birthday.

This book offers alot of great ideas on how to have an earth friendly, festive and frugal Christmas. As I was going through the book I realized there is so many great things that I can do with Michael to teach him that we don’t need to spend a fortune to have a great holiday season with family and friends.

The book is broken down into five chapters and they cover: greeting, trimming, cooking, giving and celebrating along with a great resource section.

Within in section such as Greeting you are given ideas and tips on how to create your own personal cards that are quick and easy. Some ideas are making your own photo cards (I actually know friends that do this and they turn out beautiful), recycle last years cards to make new ones (you can use the front of the card) and making your own out of assorted craft supplies you have. I am thinking of making my own cards this year for close family and friends.

In Trimmings there are ideas and tips on how to make your own ornaments, decorations, how to make your own embellishments, quick ideas on how to make home made touches around your home that are all earth friendly such as getting an earth friendly tree ( every year we get a real tree and at the end of the Christmas season the city collects the trees to make into wood chips that go back into the parks.) During the holiday season I tend to burn alot of candles and over the past few years since we don’t use our fireplace (as Michael has said “if the fireplace is going then how does Santa come down the chimney?”) so I have taken to putting a bunch of candles in there to light the fireplace up and then blowing them out at bed time.

My favorite section is Cooking. Nothing says the holidays are here better then home made cooking and in this section Tina offers suggestions for cooking and baking that you can share with your family and friends. Who doesn’t love a home made gift of yummy goodies? In order to get ready for holiday baking you have to make sure you pantry is well stocked and Tina offers suggestions on what to stock up on (dips, cheeses, crackers, nuts etc), also included are several recipes (pumpkin bread, chutney, berry jam, shortbread cookies, Russian tea cake, truffles, and many more) that you can make and give as presents, meals to make as well as drinks.

In Giving there are some great ideas on how to use what you got to make beautiful thoughtful gifts to give this year. There are some gift ideas on things to make. When it comes to gifts I have to admit it gets harder and harder to find the perfect gift but after reading this section I have to say has given me a ton of ideas such as making infused olive oil, doing a cookbook, a picture book, bookmarks (right up my alley), and many other ideas.

Finally the last chapter is Celebrating. When its all said and done this is what we look forward to being able to share the holidays with loved ones. In this chapter there are ideas for starting new traditions, cementing the old ones you do and reaching out to your community. I know some of our traditions is making popcorn and watching all the classic Christmas movies together over the holiday season.

One of the best things about the book is that there are a ton of things that are kid friendly and isn’t it great being able to do things with your kids during this holiday season?

copyright 2010, Cindy (Cindy’s Love Of Books)
If you are reading this on a blog or website other than Cindy’s Love Of Books or via a feedreader, this content has been stolen and used without permission.