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Don’t Step on the Spider

Don’t Step on the Spider is a charming children’s picture book that educates readers on the importance of life and how every insect benefits mother nature and brings balance to the ecosystem. Kirk Raeber accomplishes this with very easy language and a cute comic art style.

Young Tim is at his grandparent’s house when he decides to go out and play and encounters a spider. He’s about to step on it, like I think most people would do, but is stopped by his grandfather. His grandfather tells him that every creature has a right to live, and to prove his point he takes Tim on a jaunt through the forest to meet many more insect friends.

Every insect they meet along the way is adorable and friendly, and each one explains how they contribute to the ecosystem. There is plenty to learn in this book, even I learned about the importance of ants! This is a great book for early readers or for parents and teachers to read to children. This book provides many opportunities to discuss nature and how everyone has a role. Don’t Step on the Spider skillfully informs and entertains young readers and is one book I can see reading several times.

Pages: 35 | ASIN: B0842DJSWV

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The Garden and the Glen – Trailer

“You are all different and all perfect, just as you are. Lately, you have become more than that. Now, you reach beyond yourselves, using your differences to help your friends. That is the magic of belonging.”

A tiny blue butterfly is chased out of a yellow garden because she does not blend in.

She flees to the nearby forest glen, where she encounters a colorful band of woodland creatures-all of them expelled from the garden for the same reason-being different. The glen provides safety, friendship, and acceptance. However, it’s the garden that holds the blue butterfly’s true destiny.

A Queen, a mystical potion, and the fate of their natural world hang in the balance. The blue butterfly, and what makes her different, holds the key.

The Garden and the Glen is about the magic that finds us when we’re brave enough to be our unique selves.

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Jam Sessions: Sometimes in Middle School, the best you can do is survive

Jam Sessions: Sometimes in Middle School, the best you can do is survive. by [Jerry Harwood, Myles Richardson, Timothy Sisemore]

Jam Sessions follows a middle school boy named Phillip who has to forge a new path for himself through a new school that he’s transferred to in the middle of the school year. Phillip struggles with bullies, but finds a creative outlet in Mr. Filter’s class where he starts the day with a writing prompt that sends Phillips imagination soaring. Now, if only he could apply that creativity and passion in his real life.

Jerry Harwood has created a cast of characters that are both easy to dislike and easy to empathize with. Chuck and his friends are easily unlikable and I loved Ashley, Daniel and Jaylan. I really liked all the teachers too, especially the language arts and P.E. teachers. I did feel like Phillips mom should have played a bigger part in the story, but it didn’t hurt the story in any way. From the first time we meet Chuck I thought that he was just a pain in the butt kid who likes to be a bully and embarrass people. Chuck and his gang of hooligans didn’t really evolve much but that honestly worked for the story because they continue to be the fundamental antagonists.

Jerry Harwood does a great job detailing what a panic/anxiety attack feels like, I could almost feel and see Phillip having his attacks. It was great that he found a way to cope with his attacks. Even at the beginning when the author is describing Phillip and his mom running away from home, everything is perfectly detailed. When Phillip is standing in the back of the room on the first day of school, you could feel him praying that he is invisible and then realizing that he really had been during that class because not one person had cared about him being there or noticed his presence. It was sort of sad.

The story flowed easily and was well written. I enjoyed the small cartoon characters at the beginning of each chapter and I liked how short the chapters were. I read the book in one sitting, because it was an enjoyable read and I loved that Phillip was able to turn things around which gave the book a feel good ending.

Pages: 214 | ASIN: B0868XNSH9

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Honeycake: Counting All My Blessings

When there’s a new baby in your home, it’s easy for a child to feel jealous or forgotten because the baby will need lots of attention and care. But having the right people there for you can change everything. You can learn to be thankful for all the things in your life instead of focusing on the bad things.

Honeycake: Counting All My Blessings, by Medea Kalantar is a touching story about a little girl named Nala that has to deal with all the attention being placed on her newborn brother. She begins to wonder why her brother is getting gifts and why he’s, seemingly, more important than her. Lucky for her, Nala has a wonderful family member to talk her through it and teach her to count her blessings. She learns all about the Green-Eyed Monster and its negative effects on her. She learns to be thankful for everything in her life and to accept this new change as the blessing that it is.

The way the author is able to send a message to young readers about the importance of being thankful is amazing. She is able to write in a way that would capture any child’s attention. I enjoyed the cute and emotive drawings that do a great job of showing how Nala is feeling. This makes it easy for any reader to relate to Nala. Not only do children get an eye-catching story but they learn an important life lesson.

Honeycake: Counting All My Blessings is definitely one of the most educational books for a child to read. It teaches thing not often taught in school. Young readers will learn about gratitude and thankfulness towards things in their lives.

Pages: 37 | ASIN: B08FPK3Q53

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Literary Titan Book Awards September 2020

The Literary Titan Book Awards are awarded to books that have astounded and amazed us with unique writing styles, vivid worlds, complex characters, and original ideas. These books deserve extraordinary praise and we are proud to acknowledge the hard work, dedication, and imagination of these talented authors.

Literary Titan Gold Book Award

Gold Award Winners

A Little Bit Extraordinary by Esther Robinson

A Saint and a Sinner by Stephen H. Donnelly and Diane O’Bryan

Literary Titan Silver Book Award

Silver Award Winners

Mountain Heat by Natrelle Long

Pandora’s Gardener by David C Mason

 

Visit the Literary Titan Book Awards page to see award information and see all award winners.

 

Children are the Future of our Society

Esther Robinson Author Interview

A little bit Extraordinary follows Juliette as she explains Down’s syndrome and promotes acceptance and diversity. Why was this an important book for you to write?

Children are the future of our society and I feel it’s important to teach them the importance of being kind, considerate and understanding. This way of being is simple and achievable and can make a huge positive impact on people’s lives. My older brother, Martin, has an ultra-rare genetic syndrome called WAGR. Growing up, I was saddened by people bullying him, making assumptions about his capabilities and by him being made to attend a different school to me. Our family connected with other families whose children had various disabilities, including Down’s syndrome. I was such a shy, reserved child and I was taken aback by the open display of affection from the children I met with Down’s syndrome; they seemed free to be who they wanted to be. I saw they had individual personalities with different traits and abilities, but other people who did not mix with people with disabilities did not necessarily understand this. Down’s syndrome affects many more people than WAGR, so focusing my book on Down’s syndrome enabled me to reach more people as they would be able to identify with the character and themes of the book more easily. I also felt that many people did not know the cause of Down’s syndrome and that this book would explain it in a simplistic way, helping to reduce prejudice and judgment, thereby encouraging understanding, acceptance and integration in education and the community.

What is a common misconception you feel people have about Down’s syndrome?

People may assume people with a disability such as Down’s syndrome are unable to contribute to society, that they don’t have any skills or talents to share with the community and ostracise them. People may assume they are stupid or don’t understand what people are saying, and think they don’t feel hurt when someone is unkind to them or bullies them. This was why it was important to introduce the theme of empathy into my book.

I loved the art in this book. What was the art collaboration like with illustrator Grainne Knox?

Gráinne was enamoured with my book idea, really believing in it having an important purpose, so I knew she would put her heart and soul into it. Gráinne paid great attention to the words I had written, so she came up with picture ideas for the stanzas that really reflected the meaning of the words. If there were no words in the book, I feel the pictures would convey the story. Gráinne was a pleasure to work with – very accommodating – and came up with great ideas. I gave her ideas on what I thought Juliette should look like and with some small changes I feel we got her appearance just right. When it came to an idea for a picture to go with the stanza on how Juliette does things differently, Gráinne put out a request on social media for ideas and a mum of a child who has a disability suggested the child lining items up in rows, while a nurse who works with children with disabilities suggested the use of Makaton, so Gráinne combined those two ideas into one picture.

What is one thing you hope readers take away from your book?

The understanding that kindness, compassion, empathy and love enable people to live in harmony with one another and put this into practice in their daily lives.

Author Links: Facebook | Website |estherrobinson.co.uk

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A little bit EXTRAORDINARY encourages empathy and understanding while highlighting the importance of integration in schools and communities.
This story helps young readers to understand Down’s syndrome in simple terms. This book is an excellent resource for every parent, primary school and preschool and aims to help children to celebrate difference, cultivate a caring community and prevent bullying.
This book will help parents and teachers to see the potential in all children. Seeing beyond limitations and labels applied in society, adults will be more open to recognising talents and skills that children are showing, or may be shy at demonstrating, and can then help to nurture and develop these gifts.
This book teaches that when a decision is made from a place of love, it is always the right one. It also emphasises that following your joy brings fulfilment and happiness.

Captain Fantastic

Tommy Balaam
Tommy Balaam Author Interview

I’ve Got You is a fun space adventure that explores fear and helping friends overcome it. Why was this an important theme for this book?

For me, it was super important to get this book out during Covid-19 as I wanted to help any children feeling lonely and to make sure they never felt alone! It times of trouble we must stay together and look after those in need the most.

This is book one in your Captain Fantastic series. What can readers expect in book two?

The next book is ‘Captain Fantastic and the Chocolate Planet’ and will be ready for Christmas 2020:
“Good grief,” cried the captain “we’re space monster stew!
Or perhaps it’s an ogre, a witch or some new
Strange kind of monster, a space ghoul or mummy.”
“Captain,” said Winston, “I think it’s my tummy!”

Author Links: Website | Twitter | Facebook

First book in the amazing intergalactic Captain Fantastic series

Winston is one of the bravest dogs in the universe. He’s travelled through space and battled monsters with his best friend, Captain Fantastic, but there’s one thing that still scares him.

Come along on this adventure to find out what makes Winston tremble, and discover how Captain Fantastic comforts his loyal space dog so he’s once again a happy, waggy-tailed space hero.

First in the exciting new series of intergalactic adventures, based on the awesome and educational Captain Fantastic parties.

“In this lovely story about friendship and fears is an important message about being there for each other and being able to face our fears when we have someone to face them with. Now more than ever, this is an important message for children – I’ve Got You is like having a hug delivered in the form of a storybook.” Dr Gummer, Good Play Guide

Frankie Stealing Socks

Kimberley   Paterson
Kimberley Paterson Author Interview

Frankie the Ferret is a children’s picture book that teaches kids about the joy of having a ferret as a pet. What inspired you to write a story about Frankie?

Frankie the Ferret was our beloved pet for nine years and as my children were more active outside of our home, Frankie and I developed a special bond. This book outlines what it was like in a day of a ferret. Since most children have dogs or cats, I felt it would be nice to show everyone what a pet ferret is really like. My grandchildren did not get the chance to meet Frankie, they asked many questions about him so I wrote this book, dedicated it to my grandchildren so that they would see what Frankie was really like.

There are so many funny scenes in this book. My favorite was the scene of Frankie stealing the socks. What was your favorite scene from the book?

Frankie stealing socks is my favorite scene too, it was so cute to see him dragging the socks out of the laundry basket and running backwards dragging the socks with him. He loved to hide them under the couch, he always had quite the collection. We always knew where to find our socks if they were missing! Eventually, we bought him a few pairs of socks that he could call his own.

This book is dedicated to the memory of Frankie the ferret. Do you think ferrets are a good pet for children to have?

Ferrets are a great pet for children but not the younger ones. They are very smart, lovable and very funny but like all pets, they are a big responsibility and a lot of work to take care of. They are little escape artists so their time out of their cage should be inside a ferret enclosure with their toys, water, food and kitty litter pan to keep them safe.

Do you have other books planned featuring Frankie?

At this time, there is no sequel book about Frankie in the works.

Author Links: GoodReads| Twitter | Facebook | Website

Do you have a pet? Maybe a dog, or a cat, or a gold fish? Lots of people do, but not many people have a pet like Frankie the Ferret. A lovable, mischievous, and comical little fellow, Frankie fills his family home with love and laughter, and his family wants to share that with you!

Do you want to meet him? Then let’s go!
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