Zero just wants to get his paws on that apple. The apple, who has no name, knows not what awaits him. Zero is in no way tall enough to reach the apple with no name and needs a little help from his friends. Counting their way from 0 to 10, the ever-growing group of friends cooperate to help Zero in his efforts. His friends vary in size and shape, but they all have one thing in common, they want nothing more than to give their friend a hand. Will they make it? Will Zero ever get his apple?
A Dog Named Zero and the Apple With No Name, by T.C. Bartlett, is the beautifully illustrated children’s book focused on counting. There are many counting books out there, but Bartlett has a whole new take on the concept. With a more advanced vocabulary that challenges readers, A Dog Named Zero and the Apple With No Name contains bits of humor that parents and teachers will also appreciate–those are the best kinds of children’s books!
I have used my share of counting books over the years as a parent and elementary teacher, and Bartlett’s work is one of the best I have seen. There is much more to this little gem than meets the eye. Each of the different animals in the series of numbers offers readers the opportunity for discussion. Parents and teachers will easily find ways to have conversations about why and how each type of animal might want to help Zero. There are plenty of teaching opportunities to be had within the pages of Bartlett’s work.
I highly recommend this adorable counting story to anyone looking for an alternative to the traditional counting books. A Dog Named Zero and the Apple With No Name makes a great addition to anyone building a library for infants and toddlers.
Pages: 48 | ISBN: 1733908617
Tags: A Dog Named Zero and the Apple With No Name, author, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, children, childrens book, ebook, education, elementary, goodreads, kids, kids book, kindle, kobo, literature, nook, novel, parent, picture book, read, reader, reading, story, T. C. Bartlett, teacher, writer, writing
Grotto of Chaos follows a group of friends who disappear into a world like none could have dreamed and set out on a wild adventure. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?
I remember visiting Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri. Located there is the Marvel Cave which is said to be the 3rd largest cave system in North America. How it was discovered was a young Osage tribe member was running through the woods when he fell through a sinkhole into the earth several hundred feet. I could only imagine what was going through his mind. He must have thought that he was being swallowed up into some unknown world. It made me think of what would happen to my characters if they did the same but slide even further. And then I thought, what if nature evened the odds by providing a bioluminescent light for them? Could five young teens and a dog escape from such a deep pocket in the Earth while being hunted by unworldly creatures trying to catch them?
Clarence and his friends were all interesting and well developed. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?
The kids in the book are like my offspring. They have many of my own traits as well as characteristics of people that are close to me. For example, we can take my character, Rasheed. One of his skills is that he is a sword fencer who dreams of one day being in the Olympics. I myself have been a fencer and did actually try out for the Olympics. Olivia is a dancer and martial artist. I too, have spent many years studying various martial arts, and my mother and daughters were dancers. Even the main protagonist, Clarence, was named after my fraternal grandfather, who passed away from brain cancer when I was very young. My grandfather Clarence was said to have been full of so much ingenuity, which you can see in Clarence in the book. Even the ethnic diversity of the circle of friends is based on people who have been very close to me throughout my life. So much of my own essence and the attributes of my loved ones are embedded into my characters. So for me, my characters are very personal, as if I have put part of my soul into this story.
What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?
From start to finish, there is a lot of action in this story. But that does not mean that there is little dialog either. While the kids are being thrown into constant danger, they are constantly communicating to combine their efforts and skills to work their way out of trouble. Sometimes Clarence may rely on memories of the past to help the situation at hand. Aside from the characters, world-building was very important. Many mythological creatures are encountered, but also, a lot of science is embedded into this universe for believability. Creatures such as krakens and ghost might show up in only fiction, but the fact that you really don’t know what you would find miles into the earth, also make it feasible. According to many theories related to quantum physics, since there is an infinite number of universes, these creatures actually exist. Since the gang finds themselves in a system with somewhat of a Mandela Effect, that is where worlds collide, then all things are possible.
This is book one in The Exploits of Clarence Griffin series. What can readers expect in book two?
Without any spoilers, for those who have finished book one, we know that Clarence and his companions do not get out of this story unscathed and without debts. In book two, he will be asked to pay back that debt, thereby facing many more perils. The gang will need to stick together more than ever, and increasingly sharpen their skills for what lies ahead. Book two will also introduce new characters and foes, many of which are like none other ever featured in literature before.
Posted in Interviews
Tags: adventure, author, author interview, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, children, childrens book, Christopher Knox, ebook, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, Grotto of Chaos, historical fiction, kids book, kindle, kobo, literature, nook, novel, read, reader, reading, story, writer, writing
A camping trip sounded like such a wonderful idea–friends, family, and a bit of an adventure. Clarence Griffin and his friends are a unique group with talents and knowledge that, on an ordinary day, just make them interesting and fun. Today, however, their skills may just save their lives. When the group experiences what they all believe to be an earthquake, their plans to enjoy the trip are not thwarted–they soldier on. It’s when the ground opens up and they disappear into a world like none of them could ever have dreamed that they begin to believe this will be much more than their normal adventure.
Grotto of Chaos, by Christopher Knox, is a young adult thriller and the first in a series centered around Clarence Griffin. From cover to cover, the group of friends are met head-on with otherworldly challenges and use their wits and their talents to fight their way out of one predicament after another. The circle of friends is met head on by everything from a rat beast to a dinosaur, but their resourcefulness far outweighs anything that comes their way. Clarence and his crew are a fantastic bunch of young adult heroes.
As a teacher, I am always on the lookout for engaging books that are both readable, not overwhelming in length and of high-interest to my more avid readers. Knox more than meets all of these expectations with Grotto of Chaos. Clarence and his friends are all relatable, offer bits of humor that young readers will appreciate, and give all of us a cast of everyday superheroes that offer a new and refreshing take on the young adult genre.
One of the most appealing aspects of Knox’s work is the constant dialogue between the main characters. Young readers tend to gravitate toward books with characters who sound like them. The banter between Clarence and his sister, Penelope, makes for an entertaining read for children at this age. In addition, Knox does a fabulous job of representing a diverse friend group with different interests and talents, and each character is given his/her moment to shine.
I highly recommend Knox’s writing to anyone looking to introduce young readers to a new series of adventure stories. The main characters in Grotto of Chaos will appeal to all readers, and the constant action will keep readers coming back for more from Clarence and his pals.
Pages: 210 | ASIN: B08WVX48FY
Tags: adventure, author, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, childrens book, Christopher Knox, ebook, education, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, Grotto of Chaos: The Exploits of Clarence Griffin Book 1, historical fiction, kindle, kobo, literature, nook, novel, parent, read, reader, reading, story, student, teacher, writer, writing, young adult
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.
Gold Award Winners
Silver Award Winners
Visit the Literary Titan Book Awards page to see award information.
Posted in Literary Titan Book Award
Tags: author, author awards, author recognition, award, biography, book, book awards, book recognition, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, childrens book, crime fiction, dystopia, ebook, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, historical fiction, horror, kindle, kobo, literary awards, Literary Titan Book Awards, literature, memoir, mystery, nonfiction, nook, novel, picture book, read, reader, reading, romance, science fiction, story, suspense, thriller, writer, writing, young adult
Song of the Blue Whale is an educational picture book that teaches readers about whaling and ocean pollution. Why is this an important topic for you?
The blue whale is the largest animal on Earth. This magnificent, gentle giant is an endangered species due to the ill effects of avoidable human behaviour. There may come a time when these beautiful creatures will only exist in photographs, video footage or on the pages of books. If properly educated, informed future generations can avert such a tragedy.
I loved the art in this book, especially the pictures of whales under the ocean. What is your favorite picture from the book?
In this volume, I included cameos of two characters from other books in the series. We see Mattie Boombalatty picking up rubbish from a beach with her mother. However, my favourite illustration features Shelly, the leatherback sea turtle with a purple heart painted on her shell. The double-page spread shows the beauty of a tropical coral reef spoiled by discarded tin cans, surgical masks, nets, plastic straws and bags. Shelly is coming to the aid of a companion trapped in a plastic bag. As well as colourful seahorses and tropical fish, we see two curious dolphins. It’s a powerful image that forces older children to think about how we deal with rubbish and how it may affect other animals.
What is a simple step someone could take to help reduce ocean pollution?
Using less expendable plastic and recycling as much of the plastics we do use can dramatically reduce pollution in rivers, lakes, oceans and seas.
Do you plan to write more books on these same topics?
There is a total of seven books in my series of illustrated children’s books. These appear in an anthology titled Wayne Gerard Trotman’s Rhyming Stories, introduced by the poet and novelist Dr. Benjamin Zephaniah. I also co-wrote Believe in Fairies with my wife, Sherrie. Several species of wildflowers have disappeared from the English countryside. This rhyming fairy tale introduces children and their parents to the various types that still exist and encourages them to plant wildflower gardens.
Posted in Interviews
Tags: author, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, children, childrens book, climate change, ebook, education, goodreads, kids, kids book, kindle, kobo, literature, marine life, nook, novel, parent, picture book, pollution, read, reader, reading, Song of the Blue Whale, story, teacher, Wayne Gerard Trotman, whales, writer, writing
Can A Teddy Bear Be? is an educational children’s picture book filled with cute images and repetitive wording to help children learn to read.
Author Jose Torres is both writer and illustrator and is able to combine both crafts in this beautifully illustrated kids book. With twenty two different adorable bears throughout this book, there is plenty to keep young readers attention. Each bear represents a different profession, which is yet another educational aspect to this picture book. Children will learn to read as well as learning about different professions. This provides a great opportunity for children to learn about different jobs, see what their interested in, and begin a discussion about different professions.
The simple and repetitive words used throughout the book will ensure readers pick up new words, practice them throughout the story, and master them towards the end. This is a perfect book to build confidence in young readers. I loved all of the delightful illustrations of the bears throughout this book. My favorite was the scientist bear. The book even provides readers with an opportunity to draw their own favorite bear at the end of the book, adding a bit of interactivity to this children’s book.
Can A Teddy Bear Be? is ideal for teachers and parents to read with their children as it is perfect for beginning readers. Jose Torres Animal Reader Series is a superb start to any child’s literary journey.
Pages: 28 | ASIN: B08QRGXTRC
Tags: author, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, Can A Teddy Bear Be?, children, childrens book, early reader, ebook, education, goodreads, jose teorres, kids, kids book, kindle, kobo, learning to read, literature, nook, novel, parent, picture book, read, reader, reading, story, teacher, writer, writing
When Grandpa visits, there is a whole world of possibilities that comes alive in the heart of one little girl who doesn’t only regard him as grandpa, but someone she can trust and depend on to be allowed to dream and explore, all in the realm of safety, because Grandpa’s love is just as special as her parents’ love.
Posted in book trailer
Tags: author, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, book trailer, bookblogger, books, books to read, booktube, booktuber, children, childrens book, Debbie Obatoki, ebook, education, family, goodreads, grandparents, kids, kids book, kindle, kobo, literature, My Grandpa, nook, novel, parent, picture book, read, reader, reading, story, teacher, trailer, writer, writing
Song of the Blue Whale is a beautifully illustrated children’s book that educates readers on whales, whale hunters, ocean pollution, and what we can do to help whales and clean up our water.
This educational picture book surprised me with how many opportunities for learning were packed into so few pages. We’re first introduced to a whale with a barnacle on its tail. A cute image accompanied by a short rhyme. But readers are then taken on a trip through the ocean where we learn about the dangers whales face against hunters. With a few short simple rhymes readers are also educated on ocean pollution and provided some simple steps we can all take to help clean up. I can imagine this book being a great piece for teachers to include in their curriculum about marine biology and oceanography. The book is filled with beautiful art pieces of whales in the ocean. Some of my favorite art pieces from this book are from the bottom of the ocean looking up at whales as sunlight comes through the clouds and water. Contrast this with the dramatic scene where whalers are hunting and you really do get to experience the full range and beauty of a whale’s life in this book.
Song of the Blue Whale is a picture book that will educate as it entertains young readers. With magnificent art on nearly every page, any child is sure to appreciate the majestic nature of these animals and come away with a better understanding of what whales face in the open ocean.
Pages: 34 | ISBN: 1916184847
Tags: author, biology, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, children, childrens book, ebook, education, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, kids, kids book, kindle, kobo, literature, marine, marine biology, nook, novel, oceanography, parent, picture book, read, reader, reading, Song of the Blue Whale, story, teacher, Wayne Gerard Trotman, whales, writer, writing