Author Archives: Literary_Titan

Mahalo Does Not Mean Trash

When a young boy from California visits his cousins for the first time in Hawaii, he becomes confused about why people keep calling each other trash. What starts as simple misunderstanding blossoms into frustration and anger between the young cousins. It takes a patient Pupu (grandmother) to explain the real meaning of Mahalo and teach the children a valuable lesson about their Hawaiian culture.

Mahalo Does Not Mean Trash is an educational and inspiring story about family, traditions, and culture. Written by AJ Paki Perkins and his three teenage children, they work together to create this fascinating and outstanding children’s book. This is more than just a story about the meaning of Mahalo; it is the blending of cultures and sharing of one’s heritage. It is also a lesson in gratitude and appreciation for each other and the land that we live on.

One of my favorite parts of this magnificent book is the resources at the end. Hawaiian words can be confusing to non-natives, especially the pronunciation. The authors have included a pronunciation guide and a list of Hawaiian language words with their definitions. This children’s book is on the longer side, at over 60 pages, but the colorful illustrations play well with the vibrant setting of Hawaii. The character’s expressions really add to the story and keep children engaged. While some of the dialog can get confusing, it is a beautiful lesson for small children on diversity. The details the authors have included make this story personal and relatable.

Mahalo Does Not Mean Trash is an engaging and beautiful written children’s book that teaches about the culture of Hawaii and the importance of gratitude. Children will love reading about the cousins as they spend time with the Pupu and Papa and experience the wonderful things that the island of Hawaii has to offer.

Pages: 65 | ASIN : B0BMSKP91Z

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Tierra Day

When Tierra joins her eagle friend Eli for a walk along a nature trail, they are dismayed at the amount of trash scattered around the landscape. They meet up with Monte Mountain Lion on the trail and brainstorm ways to clean up land together. They devise a plan to hold Tierra Day on Earth Day, a celebration and community clean-up event to help humans and animals.

Tierra Day, written by Rachel Bate, is an inspiring children’s book that teaches the importance of recycling and cleaning up after yourself. The story talks about how keeping the Earth clean is a community effort. One person alone can not do it all, and this story highlights the value of getting the entire community involved. The animals even work together to surprise the humans on this special day.

The artwork done by Rebecca Jacob is beautiful and colorful. The paintings will appeal to children with their vivid colors and textures. I especially liked Monty; his expressions made me laugh.

At the end of this educational book is a fact sheet on Earth Day and a glossary; this makes it perfect for classrooms and teachers to use for a lesson on Earth Day. Many children’s books on Earth Day focus just on actually cleaning up and the importance of recycling. What stood out for me in this book was that the planning was discussed. The author emphasizes how important it is to get the word out and get involvement from the community, even the Mayor and Governor. This shows children that it is the responsibility of all people, no matter how important their jobs are, to help keep the Earth clean and trash-free.

Tierra Day is a well-thought-out and written children’s book with an important message about doing your part to keep your community clean. This book would be excellent for anyone who wants to teach children the importance of recycling and how taking care of the Earth impacts not just humans but the animals we share the planet with.

Pages: 38 | ASIN : B0BGZXNCWV

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Pixie Van Dimple and the Wrong Kind of Plastic

Pixie and Trixie Van Dimple are enjoying a day at the seaside with their family. After telling their dad, they were going to the loo, they sneak off to the sweet shop. After enjoying their finds, they realize they need to hide the evidence, but there is no trash or recycling bin in sight. So Pixie does the one thing she can think of, lets the plastic bag of trash fly off in the wind, straight into the sea. Thinking they are free and clear, they continue with their day. Soon though, from the water arises a monster. It is made out of all the discarded plastic, and trash humans have carelessly tossed away. This causes a worldwide incident, and the ECO Defense system is activated. Can Earth be saved from this plastic trash monster?

Pixie Van Dimple and the Wrong Kind of Plastic, written by Lynn McAllister, is an exciting children’s book that teaches about the dangers of throwing away plastic and especially tossing it into the ocean. It also highlights how communication lines run through the ocean seabed, and when trash is littered through the ocean, it can impact the world’s ability to communicate. The characters are dramatic and entertaining and are portrayed in a manner that will appeal to preteen readers using examples of social media as a way of reporting the disaster at hand. The rhyming narrative adds to the humor of the story and adds a fun twist to a monster tale. In addition, the illustrations add to the humor and strengthen the emotions the author is portraying. There are many terms and abbreviations in this book, which gives families and classes a variety of things to discuss, covering multiple subjects.

Pixie Van Dimple and the Wrong Kind of Plastic is an educational children’s adventure book that will appeal to older elementary readers. The colorful illustrations and lyrical text will keep them engaged as they follow the drama of Pixie and her family. With lessons on the importance of recycling, taking care of the Earth, and protecting our oceans and wildlife, this will make an excellent storybook for a classroom or library.

Pages: 34 | ASIN : B0BCH2Q6MM

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Kayla Travels in Her Dreams

Kayla wakes up and is excited for her family to travel and see their friends. She is all packed and ready to head to the airport, full of energy and anticipation. Unforintly, her father has to tell her that they can no longer go on their trip that day because of a big snowstorm. Kayla is devastated and ends up falling asleep while crying on her mom’s lap. In her sleep, Kayla dreams of traveling. She visits places all around the world and sees her friends in her dreams, but her family is not in her dream with her. After many countries and sites, Kayla realizes that even though she has her friends, her family is not with her, and she wants to return home.

Kayla Travels in Her Dreams by author Kyra Zeidan is a magical story about traveling and the importance of family. Children reading this picture book will see images from Dubai, China, Australia, France, Egypt, and even the Amazon Rainforest in Brazil. Each country she visits gives children a few fun facts about the location, accompanied by bright, colorful images created by illustrator Musa Abdul Aziz Hasan. They will also be shown that even with all the unique places a person can visit, it is not the same if you are not with your family and the ones you love. Therefore, traveling is better with family.

This educational children’s book includes resources for parents and teachers. The included questions and lesson ideas allow this story to be used in various ways by parents and teachers. There is even a page for cutting out the characters to create their own stories.

Kayla Travels in Her Dreams is a whimsical picture book that takes children worldwide to see all the unique sites found in different countries. Parents will love the included message about the importance of family.

Pages: 28 | ASIN : B0BHKQ6X6S

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The Poetry Mouse

A little mouse named Evie lived in a quaint little town near the forest. This little mouse spent her days baking, mending clothes, and keeping her home neat and tidy. However, these things are not what gave her joy in life; instead, she did these things because that is what was expected of her. Evie’s real passion, which she spent hours daydreaming about, was writing poetry.

One day she heads off to the woods with her paper and pen in hand; she spots some rabbits and composes a poem about them there. From there, she writes more until she ends up at a bench talking with Brayden Fox. Now Brayden recognizes that Evie is talented and encourages her to think about what she really wants in life and focus on that, not on what other people think she should be doing with her time.

The Poetry Mouse, written by Derek R. King and Julie L. Kusma, is a beautifully written children’s story and collection of poetry intertwined together to create a whimsical book that children and adults can enjoy. The story of Evie the mouse is cute and adorable, with the watercolor images illustrating the pages. This is a story of self-discovery, breaking out of the mold that society says you must fit into. For children, it teaches them that they do not have to fit into stereotypical molds and that they can follow their passions in life and be happy. It encourages children to dream and take action to make those dreams come true.

The second half of this marvelous book is Evie the mouse’s poetry. Placed on the pages in the illustrations of her journal, it adds to the feeling that the little mouse is composing and sharing a part of her dream with readers. Each poem written about nature is filled with passion and wonder. The poem about the owl gliding through the night sky was my favorite. I can envision the downy feathers as they glide to the earth as the Owl moves across the moon’s silhouette. The poetry is organic, drawing the reader into a moment in time. They will glimpse nature in its pure form for that one breath of time. It is not often such simple poetry that can have the power to make you stop and visualize a single moment that, had it been mentioned any other way, would have been mundane. King and Kusma take the ordinary and transform it into breathtaking.

The Poetry Mouse is an astonishing children’s poetry book that will bring joy and wonder to children reading the story and looking at the beautiful artwork. Adults will find a more profound message in the story, one of following your dreams and stopping to appreciate the simple things in life. This storybook is one that readers will want to own and keep on the shelf for years to come.

Pages: 55 | ASIN : B0B69FGYMR

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Billy’s Wide Crack

What happens when you wake up and look in the mirror while getting ready for school only to realize something is really not right. Unfortunately, that is what happened to Billy. He discovers something alarming that morning, and his solution is to hide in his bed and pretend it doesn’t exist. Then, one by one, his family members come in and observe what he has seen, and all of them are unsure of what to make of the situation.

Billy’s Wide Crack, written by JD Von Lafsalot and illustrator by Pietro Peres, is a humorous picture book with children and adults laughing with each page. The entertaining images and expressions on the characters’ faces will have children guessing right from the start as to what crack Billy has found. I loved that on each page, there was a little bee that seemed to add to the drama of the situation, like sitting on the dad’s tie.

At the end of the book are some quick questions teachers can use to review the story with their class. This helps children recall and identify the context of stories. Some questions require them to have keen observation skills and will allow them to go back and pick out details they may have missed at first.

Billy’s Wide Crack: A Fun Rhyming Story of Assumptions and False Thinking is a light-hearted picture book that will have readers of all ages laughing. With children’s active imaginations, the story will surely bring about many fun, exciting class discussions and laughs.

Pages: 35 | ASIN : B0BFDTGNH7

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A Home for Sally

A Home for Sally is a heartwarming picture book about one little puppy that is born missing one of her paws. She spends months and months in a kennel because no one wants to adopt her with her missing paw. She watches as all her siblings and friends find new homes, and she is left waiting alone. One day a family comes in and finally notices her, but will they have it in their hearts to take home the puppy with a missing paw?

Adopting a pet is a big decision and one that requires an even bigger heart if the animal has a disability or medical issue. Author Stenetta Anthony shows children in this amazing story that it is important to wait for the right situation and not rush into things. Lots of people adopted the other dogs, but it took patience for Sally to find the right family for her. Teaching children to be patient and wait for the right time in life is hard, and this story will help them understand the value of being patient.

While I enjoyed most of this story, one line stood out that did not feel right to me. When Sally was looking in the mirror and saying negative things about herself, she said that her friends had said those things to her. If they were really her friends, they would not be telling her that she was unloveable or unwanted. However, Sally showed grace and the depth of her golden heart when she was worried about them not being adopted when she found her forever home. Showing kindness to those that are not always kind to you is a great message for children to see in action.

A Home for Sally is a well-written children’s book that will teach children about patience, being kind, and never giving up on their dreams. It is a wonderful book for families and classrooms and would be a great book to read to children who are looking to get their first pet.

Pages: 30 | ASIN : B09515GN7G

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