Friday, July 19, 2024

by Danielle Daniel & illustrated by Matt James

My thoughts: 
As I read through this delightful book, I realized that there are offered a number of teaching opportunities. Written and illustrated as a lesson in the interdependency of all aspects of life on this planet with the environment, the lessons in the idea that there is help and comfort, there is alleviation of our fears in the fact that there is help in our distress, that there is support in our weaknesses are strong messages.

And while the leaves, the animals, the small critters are helped by larger entities like the sun and the wind, the young child watches each and every of these interdependent solutions transpire. He sees, and he can envision how even in his own fear, there is help. Even in his own cold, there is warmth. Even in his own distress, there is an opportunity to overcome. He can envision help for himself. No, the text doesn't say this, but it is inferred.

So the book with is sometimes dark illustrations captures the essence of dependence. A good book.

About the book: A touching, playful exploration of empathy and interdependency from an acclaimed author and illustrator.

I'm afraid, Said the leaf. You're not alone, Said the tree. But who will comfort a nervous bird, a lonely crab, a lost wolf? How can a horse find warmth, a snail some cheer, a child some rest?

Through a series of amusing and soothing exchanges, this deceptively simple and profound picture book depicts different pairings to celebrate interconnectedness and underlines the importance of caring for every living organism to ensure a strong and healthy natural world.

I'm Afraid, Said the Leaf invites young readers to understand that we all need each other for support and survival - and that we're all stronger together.

DISCLOSURE: I won a copy of this book from the Early Reviewers program. The book is provided by Tundra Books. A review is not necessary nor required but is appreciated. Opinions are mine, alone and freely given.

Monday, July 15, 2024

Jesus Moments: Moses: Finding Jesus in the Story of Moses by Alison Mitchell & illustrated by Noah Warnes [Review & Giveaway]

ISBN: 9781784989828
Hardcover $14.99
(Discounts Available)

My thoughts:
  This is a beautifully written (a great read-aloud book) storybook about Moses and the Israelites. It begins after they have crossed the Red Sea and the army of Pharaoh has been destroyed. The book covers with some emphasis and detail (though not gory) the 40-year period of wandering. Most young children's storybooks don't give this much information. Also, as a "Jesus Moments....Finding Jesus In the Story...." book, the deeper theological  connections between Old Testament and New Testament (Moses and Jesus) are made in a very understandable methodology for young readers and listeners.

Given the increased detail in the story, very young listeners in the four to six year range may lose interest or miss the connections.

I absolutely love this book as well as the other Jesus Moments book, "David," that I previously reviewed. The concept of presenting where Jesus or the promises of Jesus are found in the Old Testament is fairly new for the age bracket audience of picture books. 

In "Finding Jesus in the Story of Moses" we see several incidents that occurred during the 40-year wilderness journey. In each of these there is the opportunity to look for "bulrushes" which indicate that there is a "Jesus Moment" to look for on that page. This engages the child and produces involvement and opportunity to teach further details.

I love the illustrations and the readability of the story itself. The grumbling of the Israelites is really captured and God's disapproval and His patience shown.

I highly recommend this series for your age 5 to 10 year olds.

About the book: Help 4-7s learn how Moses points to Jesus with this beautifully illustrated Old Testament storybook from Alison Mitchell, the award-winning author of Jesus and the Lions’ Den and The One O’Clock Miracle.

Moments in Moses’ story when something in the story is a little bit like Jesus are signposted with symbols that children need to spot, helping them to understand the relationship between the Old and New Testaments.

This fun, interactive resource will give children skills to read the Bible as they connect the stories and learn that the whole Bible is about Jesus. Secret word: Provider. Great for parents or grandparents to give children aged 4-7. Can also be used as a homeschool resource, or for children’s ministry in church.

This is the second book in a series called Jesus Moments, which looks at how Old Testament characters point to Jesus.

Take a look inside

The Good Book USA has a couple of FREE cute printables: bookmark & matching game

Begins July 15
Ends August 14 @ 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA addresses only.
Entries WILL BE verified. 
DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy to facilitate a review. Opinions are mine, alone and are freely given. Winner's prize copy is provided and mailed directly to the winner by The Good Book USA. Chat With Vera is not responsible for lost or misdirected prizes.

Friday, July 12, 2024

Purchase tickets to see "The Firing Squad" | Faith-based movie | in theaters August 2nd

Based on the true story of three Christian prisoners who faced execution by firing squad in Indonesia just a few years ago (2015). Their joy in Christ stuns the entire prison camp.   “They faced death. And chose life.”

Details - Videos - Theaters -
Purchase Tickets 
Click Here

In Theaters August 2

My thoughts on the movie: The story that is the foundation for this film actually took place in the Kerobakan Prison in Indonesia in 2015. Kerobakan is a prison holding violent (as most prisons do) prisoners. In that aspect, the film seemed to be a much less violent place. 

Toward the Dawn (Western Light #2) by Mary Connealy - My Review

Buy @ BakerBookHouse
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My thoughts: The author's trademark light hearted, down-home humor is scarce in Toward the Dawn. In places the story is warm and light hearted but the remaining plot lines address deep seated wrongs against women and the drive and need to correct these wrongs. The pit of human meanness is shown without the graphic descriptions and language so often present in today's reading, audio, and visual content. 

This is a story of strengths, weaknesses. A story of overcoming and perseverance. A story of dire distress and delicate devotion. A story that embraces the harsh period of settlement and wagon trains and the rushing advancement of rail travel across wagon trails.

The issues of mental illness and the need for care of the truly mentally ill and also the abuse of  mental illness diagnosis as a means of control during this period in America's history are brought to light.

In short, Mary Connealy has brought us a rich story of life in the early days of American life.

About the book: Despite trials that threaten their path forward, hope dawns for a future filled with love.

Kat Wadsworth and Sebastian Jones never imagined their lives would entwine so closely. Forced to flee on a wagon train from a vengeful uncle and an unknown gunman, they live in a hidden canyon with the family that rescued them. But as the days turn into months, they each have separate reasons for wanting to move back to society, and the best way to the independence they desperately crave might be through a marriage of convenience. Secret word: historical

However, settling into their homestead in Cheyenne, Wyoming, reveals a different reality for Kat. Her new husband becomes consumed by his inventions, leaving her feeling lonely and isolated. And just when they think they've left the danger behind, a mysterious attacker lurks in the shadows, threatening the new life they've built. Together, they must confront the perils from their pasts to forge a future with hope and the prospect of love. 

My review of Book 1 in the Western Light series: Chasing the Horizon 

DISCLOSURE: I was provided a complimentary copy to facilitate a review. Opinions are mine, alone and are freely given. 

Wednesday, July 10, 2024

"Stanley the Baker" by William Bee - Children's book [Review & Giveaway - USA]

ISBN: 9781682637265
Hardcover $16.99

My thoughts: 
Stanley books are such a sweet delight. Each shows the little critter in various occupations in simple yet colorful illustrations that are sharply defined and is a sure-fire winner for children ages 3 to 7.

These are quality books and are sized just right for young children (hard cover, paper pages, sized: 8.33 x 0.34 x 8.28 inches).  

As a baker, Stanley even grinds his own flour. He goes through the process of making the baked goods and engages with his friends. His day is so busy. But at the end of the day, he enjoys his goodies; and then a tired Stanley goes to bed. Moral is to stay busy, enjoy what you're doing, be cheerful, and then end the day by going blissfully to sleep.

There are 9 other Stanley books in the collection. All are fun books for the kiddies.

About the book: It’s another busy day for Stanley and friends at the bakery!

Accessible text and brightly colored illustrations helpfully convey the process of turning ingredients into baked goods for toddlers who love equipment, tools, and food. Stanley’s entire community gets involved in the baking process, from milling flour and proofing bread to delivering goodies to customers. Secret word: baker - After a busy day at work, Stanley unwinds with his familiar supper and bath routine that makes this series a great pick for bedtime reading!

1 Copy of "Stanley the Baker"
Begins July 10
Ends August 10 @ 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA addresses only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy to facilitate a review. Opinions are mine, alone and are freely given. Winner's prize copy is provided and mailed directly to the winner by Peachtree Publishing or its publicist.

Monday, July 8, 2024

Terrific Nat Geo Kids' SHARKFEST 5-Book Bundle Giveaway [Ends Aug. 5 - USA]

 Welcome to a great summer beachy SHARKFEST!

Chat With Vera readers have long enjoyed seeing - and vying to win a copy - of National Geographic Kids fabulous books. Here you go again! Read through all 5 book descriptions & enter to win this grand bundle.

Welcome To The Nat Geo Kids Sharkfest 5 Book Bundle Giveaway! 1 Winner ($66 TRV!)

This giveaway is part of our SMGN 2024 Back To School Gift Guide – Stop by to see all the giveaways and great products!


Co-hosts for this giveaway are: Pink Ninja Blog, Beautiful Touches, Golden Goose Giveaways, Gifts for all seasons, Home Jobs by Mom, Marksvilleandme, My Silly Little Gang, The Stuff of Success, & Versatileer

Here is a list of all the bloggers involved in the gift guide. A Rain of Thought, Beautiful Touches, Contest Corner, Deliciously Savvy, Freebies Deals & Steals, Giveaway Gator, Golden Goose Giveaways, Home Jobs by Mom, Honey Can Do It, MarksvilleandMe, My Silly Little Gang, Pink Ninja Blog, Sweeps Madness, The Stuff of Success, This Frugal Grandmom, This Frugal Family, Versatileer


The Sponsor Is:

1 Lucky Winner Will Win A 5 Pack Bundle Of Nat Geo Kids Shark Books With A TRV Of $66!

Check Out The Books Included In This Must Have Collection Of Shark Books From Nat Geo Kids!

1) 1,000 Facts About Sharks

Dive into 1,000 sensational facts about these fierce and fascinating predators, from great whites to whale sharks, reef sharks, goblin sharks, and more!

From the bizarre frilled shark to the wide-headed hammerhead, discover all you have ever wanted to know about sharks! Each page of this book is brimming with bite-sized facts, incredible shark stats, and unbelievable photos of sharks in the wild. Inside, you’ll glimpse fossils of prehistoric sharks, learn exactly how many pointy teeth are in this apex predator’s mouth, and meet awesome shark relatives, like stingrays. You’ll also learn about new technologies inspired by sharks and find out what conservations are doing to help protect this misunderstood fish.

With a fun-fact format that makes learning feel like a breeze, and expert-vetted, up-to-date shark info—plus backmatter about shark anatomy, genealogy, and more—this book is your go-to reference for shark enthusiasts young and old. Plus, hundreds of thrilling photographs bring the facts to life in this dazzling dive into the watery world of these incredible creatures.

2) National Geographic Kids 5-Minute Shark Stories

Dive into amazing true tales about baby sharks, surprising shark friendships, daring shark rescues, swimming with sharks, and more about these fierce and fascinating fish.

These 12 fin-tastic true tales about sharks are all the ideal length to be read aloud in five minutes, making them perfect for bedtime, story time, or any time.

Kids come face-to-face with great white sharks, hammerhead sharks, whale sharks, and more as each 5-minute story takes them into the wild world of these incredible creatures. Join National Geographic underwater photographer Brian Skerry as he meets sharks with surprising personalities, and learn all about the king of the sea—the great white shark! Illustrated with colorful photographs of one of the planet’s top predators, these awe-inspiring true stories are perfect for any time you’re ready for a jaw-some reading adventure. Shark-crazy kids and other animal lovers will want to dip into this collection of true stories again and again!

3) The Ultimate Book of Sharks

Dive into the wild world of sharks! Get up close to learn the truth behind these fantastic, ferocious fish with famed National Geographic photographer and explorer Brian Skerry. Join this amazing underwater adventure to track the sharks of the world, from the teeniest dogfish to the everfeared great white. This ultimate book features every species of shark on the planet, with awesome photos, fascinating facts, the latest science, and firsthand stories of real-life encounters with these incredible creatures. Learn how sharks live, how they eat, the challenges they face, and whether or not you are actually on the menu.

4) Weird But True Sharks

Whale sharks have tiny teeth covering their eyeballs! It’s Weird But True! And this fin-tastic, photo- and fact-packed book in the best-selling series is the most jaw-some yet!

Sink your chompers into these wild facts:

*Great white sharks can detect a single drop of blood in the water from one-third of a mile away.

*Fossilized dino poop has been found with ancient shark bites in it.

*Ninja lantern sharks glow in the dark.

They’re all weird, and they’re all true. And there’s A LOT more where that came from!

From bizarre creatures in the ocean today to gigantic prehistoric sharks and even some pop culture shark weirdness, this portable, browsable, supercool book is full of incredible facts, amazing photos, and fun illustrations about everything sharks.

5) National Geographic Kids Sharks Sticker Activity Book: Over 1,000 Stickers!

Rule the ocean in this shark-tastic sticker and activity book from National Geographic Kids! This super engaging activity book is packed with mazes, spelling and pattern games, drawing activities, shark facts, and more. Shark-crazy kids are sure to love these pages loaded with fun, learning as they go!


Click Below To Enter & Good Luck!

This giveaway/sweepstakes is in no way endorsed, affiliated, or associated with Facebook, Twitter or any other Social Media Networking Site. This Giveaway is valid to continental United States residents only, Entrants must be 18+ years of age to enter. This giveaway event will end at 11:59 PM (EST) 08/05/2024. The winner will have 48 hours to email their information back to mcushing7 at hotmail dot com and pinkninjablog at hotmail dot com or a new winner will be drawn, you may want to put these email addresses as safe as it could go to spam. The giveaway is not valid where prohibited! By entering you are authorizing us to collect the information on the form below, this information is used only to contact the winner! No purchase necessary, Void were prohibited by law, and the number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Winners are chosen randomly by the Giveaway Tools program. The sponsors are each responsible for shipping of the above prizes. No blog associated with this contest are responsible for prize fulfillment. If you would like to be a sponsor in a giveaway like this please email Melissa Cushing at mcushing7 (at)hotmail (dot) com. If you take an entry you must stay following for the entire contest or you will be disqualified.

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Candlewick Press presents Social Emotional Learning with New Picture Books! [Review & Giveaway]

Social Emotional Learning with New Picture Books!

Foster and teach social emotional learning with picture books that discuss self expression, believing in yourself, understanding your moods, making friends, and learning to be brave. Important reads for little ones to learn problem solving and emotional acceptance.

Just Like Millie by Lauren Castillo | Ages 3 to 7

My thoughts:  A very introverted child is happy playing at home with her toys and being with her mother. When confronted, or given the opportunity to be with other children, she shies away clinging to her known world.

In a wise move, her mother takes her to where a young dog, Millie, is available and the child falls in love with it. Play. Bonding. These lead to outdoor activities and soon Millie sees another child with a dog also. The joy of making friends by Millie soon rubs off on the young girl.

The story is sweetly illustrated using bold black outlined drawings and soft richly toned colors. The child's personality is captured revealing her reticence to interact with others and then her hesitant, yet self-motivated, personally driven reach-out.

Well done children's book.

About the book: A young girl and her mother move to an apartment in a new city. Despite her mother’s efforts to take her out, . the girl would rather play by herself in their cozy home—she feels just fine on her own. Introductions to children her age have her hiding behind her mother’s legs, and invitations to group activities have her in tears. That is, until she meets Millie, a rescue dog who is not too big, not too small, and kisses her arm when the girl nervously reaches out. With Millie, saying hello to new people isn’t so scary . . . and maybe making a friend isn’t either. Through emotionally honest prose and soft, expressive illustrations, Lauren Castillo explores one girl’s shyness and anxiety—and how one dog’s love helps her open up—in a warm picture book that reminds readers of how the right companion can make the world feel like a less frightening place. Secret work: scared

“Millie’s constantly wagging tail makes this story a hopeful read-aloud for any family whose members struggle with shyness.”
—The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

Earnest Sandpiper’s Great Ascent Written & illustrated by Timothy Basil Ering | Ages 3 to 7

My thoughts: A beautifully illustrated story of shore birds - Sandpipers. This involves a Sandpiper family with young birds ready to learn to fly. But one is hesitant, fearful, and unable to make it work for him. He is strongly encouraged by all and helped. But it just doesn't work for him.

Eventually, a bright balloon with red string attached drifts along and it inspires little sandpiper to leap and jump into the air. But then he becomes entangled in the string attached to the balloon. The string then gets twisted on a piece of driftwood. Impending tragedy approaches.

The story ends with the sandpiper's family helping him get free, so all does end well. The implication is, though, that birds and other creatures are in danger from the material of the balloon and the string. Back material is included to help folks understand the impact these materials have on birds and other creatures.

A lovely book with many lessons. One being that slow bloomers, slow learners, hesitant performers can be encouraged and helped along. Also, the ecological lesson is subtle, yet powerfully implied.

About the book: Gentle text and whimsical, sea-bright illustrations encourage wary fledglings to achieve the impossible, all in their own good time.

"Breathe . . . try . . . jump . . . FLY!"

With trademark energy and warmth, acclaimed creator Timothy Basil Ering delivers another picture book hero for young children to root for and relate to. The time has come for three young sandpipers to soar, but Earnest seems tied to the ground. He has wings and tail feathers just like his brother and sister; what makes him so afraid? Magic will happen, Mom promises, when he's ready. But no matter how much she and Dad coach him or his siblings cheer him on, Earnest's efforts only lead him into danger. Perhaps, with his family's support and a little trust in himself, they'll lead him out again.

Imagine Counting all the Stars by Raewyn Caisley, illustrated by Gabriel Evans | Ages 4 to 8

My thoughts: Imagine Counting All the Stars is a beautifully illustrated and written story of a little girl that is different from other children in that she thinks and treasures shapes, numbers, lines, counting, etc. This characteristic reveals her gifted mind that inclines toward mathematical and geometric. In the story, she is presented as a normal child in a normal school. Her father seems to recognize, at least I think he does, her mathematical abilities.

She is fine in school but one day senses a feeling of nonconnection. Her father schedules a trip to the observatory for Maddie and her new classmate, who surprisingly is also interested in things mathematical.

I love this book for its beautiful illustrations and its gentle telling of a gifted child's thoughts and actions.

About the book: Math makes for an inspiring new friendship in a story of kindred spirits who bond under a dome of billions of stars.

Maddie takes comfort in counting daisy petals and the parallel lines of moonlight pouring through her bedroom blinds. She finds joy in the black-and-white keys on a piano, the tessellations in a brick pathway. Dad understands and encourages her love of math, but Maddie longs for a friend who marvels with the same enthusiasm she does. The other girls prefer dolls to building with shapes at playtime, and when they bake together, Maddie likes to measure, while the others decorate. Always the odd girl out, Maddie finally meets her match when Dad invites new classmate Priya and her mom along on a stargazing expedition to the observatory. The unfathomable number of stars takes Maddie’s breath away—and Priya’s. Perhaps one of them will discover a way to count all those stars one day! Heartfelt text and timeless illustrations tell a relatable story of finding the right friend at the right time and counting yourself lucky indeed.

King Lion Written & illustrated by Emma Yarlett | Ages 3 to 7

My thoughts:  The theme of this story is how a character comes across as mean and hurtful to others when the intent is not to do so, and how this prevents his ability to socialize. This troublesome characteristic is overcome by another individual who is mindful enough to gently engage and befriend the other harsher individual.

In other words, how to be kind and friendly to those in need of a kind word or deed.

While I'm not particularly fond of the rough, bold artistic style that utilizes black line and rough-drawn text, it is effective. The fierceness of King Lion is effectively portrayed in the illustrations, and the bold yet gentle gesture of offered friendship is beautifully and boldly portrayed.

A good lesson in character shaping and social interactions.

About the book:  Why does everyone run away whenever this lonely beast roars “HELLO!” at them? A story about the art of making friends—and the bravery of one kind little girl.

King Lion wants a friend. But the only way he knows to communicate is to ROAR! Waving his paw, flashing a smile, and even cracking a joke don’t help. How can he let the townsfolk know that he just wants some company? Wild with loneliness, the king climbs to the top of a tower and roars his fierce sadness day and night, until one day, a little girl hears him and thinks that perhaps she understands. With charming illustrations, Emma Yarlett’s gently humorous take on how to make friends shows a little empathy goes a long way.

1 Copy of Just Like Millie
Begins July 8
Ends August 8 @ 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA addresses only.
DISCLOSURE: I received copies of these books to facilitate a review. Winner's prize copy is provided and mailed directly to the winner by Candlewick Press or it's publicist. Chat With Vera is not responsible for lost or misdirected prizes.

Sunday, July 7, 2024

๐ŸŽ„Christmas in July Giveaway Hop๐ŸŽ„Lots of fun giveaways ~ ending July 26 ๐ŸŽ„


Be sure to visit the following blogs & enter each of the giveaways for fabulous opportunities to win! Have fun! Think COLD on these HOT days.


You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Friday, July 5, 2024

Cold Vengeance: (An FBI Profiler Romantic Suspense Cold Case Thriller Series #3 - Ryland & St. Clair) by Nancy Mehl (Christmas in July BlogHop Giveaway)

About the book: When a renowned crime podcaster vanishes without a trace, former FBI behavioral analysts turned private investigators River Ryland and Tony St. Clair are called upon to track her down. As they wade through the evidence she left behind, they unearth a startling connection--she may have discovered the existence of an unknown killer, and he will stop at nothing to carry out a deadly plan.

As the pair delves deeper, they soon find themselves the targets of a relentless enemy determined to silence them. With their lives--and hearts--on the line, can they confront the evil that threatens them before it consumes them both? Secret word: ill-will 

Monday, July 1, 2024

Kid's lure of the water beach bag reading: Submarines, Mermaids, Aquatics [Review & 1 book Giveaway]


Celebrate the start of the summer with some great new picture books to tuck in your beach bag and enjoy together for some fun in the sun!

Dream Submarine by Charlotte Gunnufson & illustrated by Cleonique Hilsaca 

ISBN: 9781536224795
Hardcover $17.99 US

My thoughts:  This is a delightfully bright, colorful journey across the vast oceans of the world whilst tucked inside a tiny submarine. The dreamer (a sweet child) gazes at the plethora of fishes, sea creatures, grasses, etc. that inhabit the vast deep as they are seen through his submarine window.

As the journey is recounted, the text is rich with subtle alliteration phraseology, words that end similarly or sound similar - such as "Parrot fish sleep in slime sleeping bags," etc. Text that is rich for the young reader.

But perhaps one of the biggest gems of this children's book is the grasp of the vast ocean that covers our world. The ending statement "Despite all the different names, there is really only one global ocean" is bold, definitive, and worthy of contemplation.

Back pages include a two-page spread of the world showing the submarine's journey across the oceans. Also, a glossary and definitions of ocean creatures by the oceans they inhabit. And then the list of Ocean Zones describing the five layers, or zones, of the ocean. 

A very interesting book and one that children can enjoy and learn from multiple readings.

About the book:  Climb aboard the Dream Submarine and set your course for an eveningtide lullaby in this illustrated, illuminating journey of maritime enchantment.

Glide through the ocean with a young child in her cozy little submarine. See how marine animals brush their teeth, put on pajamas (by shifting colors to better blend in), and tuck themselves into sponge beds. Dive between towers of slumbering whales and see bioluminescent creatures paint galaxies in the abyss, then make a wish upon a sea star and let the Dream Submarine whisk you away. Author Charlotte Gunnufson gently guides readers to sleep as she introduces them to a host of mesmerizing sea creatures, while Cleonique Hilsaca’s colorful illustrations transform underwater environs into an imaginative dreamscape. Back matter features a map of the Dream Submarine’s journey, a deeper dive into the ocean’s zones and animals, and resources for further exploration.

Aqua Boy by Ken Wilson-Max 

ISBN: 9781536236644
Hardcover $17.99 US

My thoughts:
 This is a cute book about a boy that lives by the sea, and his family are guardians of the ocean. This seems to be an ecological group  of volunteers all over the world that help pick up trash and clean our oceans. (see

The little boy swims as do his friends, family, and neighbors. But he is afraid to put his head in the water. He is encouraged to trust that he will eventually do this. 

An octopus is stranded on shore and the boy's father assists it back into the water. The boy follows and is so entranced he, without thinking, goes under water and watches the octopus swim off.

About the book:  A boy’s love for the sea and marine animals spurs him to quiet bravery—and a transformative first experience—in a story that will resonate with young ocean lovers. Secret word: water

Aaron lives by the ocean with his sister, Angel, and his mom and dad, who are Ocean Guardians. He loves the smell of the air, the colors of the water, the sound of the waves, and the feel of sand between his toes. But unlike his sister, who dives into the waves all day long, Aaron shies away from putting his head in the water. How can he ever fulfill his dream of swimming with dolphins and whales? One day, as his family does beach cleanup after a storm, they come upon a stranded octopus. As Aaron helps his father with the rescue, he finds himself following the octopus underwater to watch it swim away. He did it! With warm illustrations and a gentle text, Ken Wilson-Max shows how environmental stewardship and empathy for the world’s animals can infuse us with unexpected bravery.

Mermaid Lullaby by Kenneth Kraegel 

ISBN: 9781536204667
Hardcover $17.99 US

My thoughts:
 An interesting children's fantasy that has mermaids swimming through seas in vivid colors in this imaginary undersea world. Scenes. Plants. Creatures. Colors. 

The illustrations are both sweet, interesting, and unusual. The mermaids tend to be child-like so this will appeal to the young child. The focus on colors will aid in learning colors. The details will enable discovery and wonder. It is a gently, soothing type of story that will make bedtime reading a pleasure.

About the book:  Explore the secret colors of a mermaid’s world in a lulling and lyrical story from the creator of the celebrated Mushroom Lullaby.

Today is a good day.
A good day for exploring.
A good day for exploring the colors of this world.

Enter the colorful realm of three mermaid friends and follow them through their enchanting day. Wake to the surprise of a red sunrise, explore a verdant underwater garden, and dive through waves of startling blue. In this delightfully dazzling story, one-of-a-kind creator Kenneth Kraegel nurtures young children’s minds and imaginations by merging a fresh color-concepts story with a soothing lullaby, gently ushering little listeners toward sleep and sweet dreams.

Prize: 1 copy of Dream Submarine 
Begins July 2
Ends July 31  @ 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA addresses only
DISCLOSURE: I received complimentary copies to facilitate a review. Opinions are mine, alone and are freely given. Winner's prize copy is provided and mailed directly to the winner by Candlewick Press or its publicist. Chat With Vera is not responsible for lost or misdirected prizes.