Sunday, August 17, 2014

Travel with Bella & Harry as they visit Dublin and Maui (Review & Giveaway)

The world is a big place and full of cultural diversity and interesting sights to see. Children need to learn about this wondrous world - the civilizations, the history, the peoples, the climates, the geography, and the food. Well, author, Lisa Manzione and illustrator, Kristine Lucco will bring the world to your door step courtesy of Bella and Harry.

About the series: The Adventures of Bella & Harry is a picture book series that chronicles the escapades of a pup named Bella, her little brother Harry and their "people" family, who travel the world exploring the sights and sounds of new, exciting cities. The “Bella & Harry” series is intended to be an informative, interactive and exciting way to introduce children to travel, different countries, customs, history and landmarks with the educational value of this book cleverly disguised amidst dozens of illustrated pages which are sure to win the hearts of young readers.

ISBN: 978-1-937616-51-9
Published January 2014

First stop today is Dublin:  Winner of the Mom's Choice Award !!!

Join sibling Chihuahuas Bella and Harry as they travel to Dublin with their family to visit the Ha’Penny Bridge and Trinity College Library.  Take side trips to Giant’s Causeway, Blarney Castle and the Cliffs of Moher.  Learn about local cuisine (Irish stew and Irish soda bread) and basic Irish Gaelic phrases.  Dublin is the eleventh book in the series. 

My thoughts: Dublin is in Ireland and Ireland is known as the Emerald Isle because of the beautiful green colors of the grass, hills, and mountains. The illustrator has done a beautiful job bringing the beauty of Ireland to this book and capturing the history. There is so much to explore and the two Chihuahua siblings and “their children” explore it all.

Ireland has a lot of religious history, castles, and legends and the story-journey and pictures capture that, too.

The factoids are explained satisfactorily for the young age group for which the book is intended. The illustrations, bright, bold, and definitive are entertaining as well since they capture the essence of the two little dogs.

This entertaining and educational book does a good job of introducing the reader to Ireland and hence Dublin and all that the lovely, historic city encompasses. Not too much information, but enough.

Next stop is Maui! Winner of the Mom's Choice Award !!! 

ISBN : 978-1-937616-52-6
Release Date: June 2014
Join sibling Chihuahuas Bella and Harry as they travel to Maui with their family and visit the Haleakala National Park (and see a volcano crater), walk on Honokalani Black Sand Beach and travel the Hana Highway.  Take side trips to Wailau Falls and Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.  Learn how to do the hula, attend a luau and eat poi.

My thoughts: Now we journey half way around the world to a tropical paradise - Maui. This island paradise is beautifully presented in the illustrations of waterfalls and the Pacific ocean, beautiful floral, black volcanic sand and rocks. Cultures of peoples native to Maui is touched on in dance, ceremony, and food so that Bella and Harry are bound to learn a lot as well as “their children.”  They actually get to see lava flowing from a volcano!

Maui is one of the group of islands that make up Hawaii. These islands were formed by volcanoes and are situated in the Pacific Ocean.

The Adventures of Bella & Harry are nicely bound and stitched books and will hold up to a lot of enjoyment and I heartily recommend the series for home libraries, school libraries, and public libraries.

As Chat With Vera's readers already know, I love it when a young child's book is entertaining as well as educational. There is such a dearth of instruction in the schools and textbooks today, that children are not gaining knowledge of the world in which they live, where countries are located, what country is neighbor to another, what the cultural aspects of the population is, what the land mass is, and if it is dissected by rivers or surrounded by water. It is sad. But there are some books on the market that you can use to enlighten and bring the world home to your special child. When the opportunity presents itself, I review books that introduce social studies and cultures. I previously reviewed two very large books of maps (or atlas) featuring pictures of the history, peoples, animals, land formations, etc. Chat With Vera wants children to learn about their world.

Now to travel with Bella & Harry ... got your passport?

GIVEAWAY: These two books will make a wonderful gift for that special child in your life and the author might toss in a nylon "backpack" and some pencils. Wowie! Use the Rafflecopter entry form and let's see who can win a living room-travel-set for a child. Both of these books to one winner! Begins August 17  & ENDS September 10 @ 12:01 a.m. ET. Open to USA mainland addresses only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
About the author & illustrator: Lisa Manzione, Author
 - The Bella and Harry series of children's books is Lisa Manzione's first foray into children's fiction writing. As a member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI), Lisa's entrance into the field of literature is one she has eagerly awaited and is very passionate about.

The series was developed with the hope of inspiring young readers to embrace the world and encourage its exploration. Done through the comedic and informative adventures of Bella and Harry, while traveling through various countries, Lisa hopes to stimulate children's imaginations and foster a thirst for understanding the world in which they live

Kristen Lucco, Illustrator - Born in rural Pennsylvania, Kristine's passion for art began at a young age. This interest in art continued and ultimately led Kristine to study at the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale.

Her talent was quickly recognized as extraordinary by local designers and today, over 20 years later, Kristine's art and designs adorn walls and a myriad of other surfaces all over south Florida.

DISCLOSURE: The author has provided complimentary copies in exchange for my honest review. No compensation was received. Opinions expressed are solely my own. 


  1. I have never had the opportunity to go to these cities. I would love to, of course!

  2. no i have never been out of New England

  3. Took my eldest son to Hawaii so we we in Maui. I remember books about traveling when I was a child. There were twins that went everywhere. I loved them, but have not been able to find them as an adult. Unfortunately, I have forgotten the author's name. So, I have big hope for these books!! Ronnalord(at)msn(dot)com

  4. I would love to visit either one of these cities, I have never been to either one. I would say that I'm leaning a little more toward Dublin.

  5. I haven't been to either Dublin or Maui --- I'd love to go to both, but if I had to choose, I guess it would be Maui.

  6. No never traveled to them except in books. jrs362 at Hotmail dot com

  7. I have not visited these two cities yet. I'd like to go!

    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

  8. I lived in Germany for two years as a kid and it was a wonderful experience.

  9. never have been to these two cities

  10. i have not been to either city but would love to go to dublin
    sonflower277 at gmaild to com

  11. I have not but I would love to go to hawaii

  12. I have never been to Dublin or Maui. I would love to go to Hawaii! Try the food and see the volcanoes.

  13. I haven't read the Bella and Harry books yet, but books that introduce children to new places in a fun way are always among my favorites. The covers are darling too!

  14. I have been to Maui and had a relaxing, great vacation.

  15. I have not been to either city but would love to go to Dublin some day!


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