Exploring education through books, travel, and adventure

Tag: Book Recommendation

Three Cheers for Olive Ewe!

Three Cheers for Olive Ewe!

You may have guessed by now that I really LOVE picture books…like, a lot! They are one of my favorite types of books to read and I absolutely LOVE sharing new picture books with you! Well, today I have a new book that I think […]

Malamander – A Must-Read New Middle-Grade Book

Malamander – A Must-Read New Middle-Grade Book

“If the impossible is possible anywhere, it’ll be possible in Eerie-on-Sea” Welcome to the sleepy beach town of Eerie-on-Sea. It is winter, and everything is different during the winter. You see, legend has it that a monstrous creature called the Malamander prowls the shore of […]

Circus Mirandus is 100% Pure Magic

Circus Mirandus is 100% Pure Magic

Circus Mirandus is 100% pure magic from beginning to end. I finished the book in two days and could not put it down. Cassie Beasley beautifully weaves a story full of magic and heart with a little mystery tied in! I can’t wait to re-read this with my kids because I know that they will absolutely adore it.

Welcome to Circus Mirandus

Micah lives with his Grandpa Ephraim and they are two peas in a pod. Micah has grown up hearing his Grandpa’s stories of Circus Mirandus, a magical circus that he visited when he was a child. Sadly, Grandpa Ephraim is dying, and Great Aunt Gertrudis has come to help take care of Micah. She is a mean and cranky woman who despises Grandpa’s stories of the circus. Micah can’t envision a world without Grandpa Ephraim in it. One day, Grandpa Ephraim confides in Micah, Circus Mirandus is real. Not only is Circus Mirandus real, but The Lightbender, a brilliant magician, owes Grandpa a miracle. Micah sets out on a quest with his new friend Jenny to track down The Lightbender and get him to save Grandpa’s life. Will The Lightbender be able to help? Will he give Grandpa Ephraim his miracle?

My Thoughts

As you may have already guessed, I LOVED this book. There are so many factors that combined together to make this an incredible read. The biggest factor for me was the magic. Author Cassie Beasley created a perfectly magical world that is Circus Mirandus. A perfect blend of possible and impossible! She writes with such beautiful detail that you feel like you are experiencing Circus Mirandus for the first time right along with Micah…and it is pure magic indeed!

Next up would be the fantastic cast of characters. There are characters that I fell in love with, characters that made me laugh, and characters that I really couldn’t stand…I’m looking at you Great Aunt Gertrudis. Also, the relationships between the characters was incredible. Micah and his Grandpa have such a beautiful and special relationship that it hurt my heart to see them both suffering so. I am so eager to see how the relationship between Micah and The Lightbender will blossom…so excited for the sequel!

The last piece for me that made this such a memorable read would be the adventure and mystery. There were so many unexpected twists and turns! Just when you thought you had something figured out, you realize that there is so much more to the story! It was a non-stop page-turner for me.

This is a book that I am going to remember for a long time. The sequel is sitting on my table waiting for me to get home from vacation and I can’t wait. I was so sad when I reached the end of the book…not because I didn’t like the ending, but because I so desperately didn’t want to say goodbye to Circus Mirandus. I am so looking forward to the next installment!

My kids are going to absolutely love Circus Mirandus and I can’t wait to share this magical world with them. I think it will be even more special to share this as a read aloud with them! The second book, The Bootlace Magician will be released on October 1st, 2019!

To order your own copy of Circus Mirandus, click here.

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All The Impossible Things- A Must-Read New Middle Grade Novel

All The Impossible Things- A Must-Read New Middle Grade Novel

  Some books have a way of simultaneously breaking your heart and making it swell. All The Impossible Things was a gut-wrenchingly beautiful story that captured my heart and attention.  I hope that my words can do this book justice because it is just so […]

The Curse of the Werepenguin Review and Craft!

The Curse of the Werepenguin Review and Craft!

The Curse of the Werepenguin Bolt Wattle is an orphan. He has spent most of his life at Having spent most of his life at the Oak Wilt Home for Unwanted Boys, all Bolt wants is to find his real family. One day Bolt learns […]

Out of this World Books for your Astronomy Unit!

Out of this World Books for your Astronomy Unit!

We are just at the beginning of our astronomy and space unit! The kids have been looking forward to this unit for months! I have spent so much time collecting resources, books, supplies, and organizing activities and I can’t wait to share it all with you!! I am hoping to have lots of posts with ideas for books, projects, and supplies! This post is going to be ALL about the amazing out of this world books to add to your unit! As you well know by now, all of our units are super book heavy…we just can’t get enough! So, let’s get to it!

Out of this World Space Books

Narrowing down this list was nearly impossible…but I limited myself to just sharing my top 6…and I didn’t even include my very favorite books from Usborne Books & More…which could fill an entire blog post in itself…actually…it probably will! Anyway…on with it!

1.) Planetarium

Not to be dramatic…but you need this book. If you are a fan of Botanicum or Animalium…this is the newest installment from Big Picture Press. It is just gorgeous and so packed full of information. I can’t recommend these books enough. Awesome resources to use again and again.

 2.) Seeing Stars: A Complete Guide to the 88 Constellations

If you plan to cover constellations YOU.NEED.THIS.BOOK. I have only had this book for 3 days and it is incredible. Not all books will contain all 88 constellations, but this one does. Not only does it show you the constellations but it also explains to you how they came to be named, the brightest star in the constellation, and where and when to see it. I think my favorite thing about this book (aside from the fact that it smells fab) is that it breaks the constellations down into the “ancient” constellations and the more modern ones. So well organized and just gorgeous.

3.) A Child’s Introduction to the Night Sky

I have had this book forever and have only recently opened it. It is incredible. I loved the way it was organized so much that I planned much of our unit based on this book. It is so beautiful but it also explains things in such an easy way that it is easy for kids to understand! It also comes with glow in the dark star stickers and a cool star finder!

 

4.) What We See in the Stars

This one can best be described as Gor-Geous. It is such a wonderful combination of science and myth. It is packed with so much goodness. I ordered this one before even seeing it in person because I had a feeling it would be a keeper and it absolutely IS!

 

5.) G is for Galaxy: An Out of this World Alphabet

No Homeschool by the Beach unit would be complete without an alphabet book from Sleeping Bear Press. These are my go-to books for creating homeschool units. I wrote about my obsession with them here. G is for Galaxy is another home run. It is packed with information and in usual alphabet book fashion has gorgeous illustrations and tons of facts! S is for Saturn, T is for Telescope, and J is for Jupiter are just a few of the pages you will find. Absolutely awesome book!

 

6.) Star Stories: Constellation Tales from Around the World

I literally just got this book this week! I was supposed to have it yesterday on it’s release day but my friends at Amazon were a little late getting it here…not pleased my friends! Anyway, it was worth the wait. This book is GORGEOUS! Star Stories is FULL of the tales and mythology surrounding the constellations. You will read about stories from Ancient Greece, China, India, North America, Egypt, and the South Pacific. We are starting this book this afternoon. I read the first few stories and it is awesome. The illustrations are SO lovely and the stories are ones both you and your kiddos will love!

 

As I mentioned above, this is just the tip of the iceberg of awesome books. I have created an Amazon list with several more…and if you love Usborne Books & More…I am hoping to get a list up with those amazing books as well!

To view my Amazon list click here.

 

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Llama Destroys the World is a Laugh-Out-Loud Gem

Llama Destroys the World is a Laugh-Out-Loud Gem

You guys…have I got a hysterical book recommendation for you! What was the last laugh-out-loud hysterical book that you’ve read? I can’t remember the last book that had me cracking up as much as this one did. Llama Destroys the World is a brand new […]

Summer: My New Favorite Book to Teach Kindness

Summer: My New Favorite Book to Teach Kindness

“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted”- Aesop   Friends, have I got a wonderful new book for you. Teachers, homeschool families, parents…this is a book you are going to want to read with your kiddos. Summer, is a new release […]

5 Cherries is a Celebration of Imagination

5 Cherries is a Celebration of Imagination

Children have an amazing gift of imagination. Have you ever listened to your children play and been completely amazed at some of the things they think up? 5 Cherries is a celebration of that imagination!  I was immediately drawn to this book because of the gorgeous illustrations on the cover. I soon learned that the book itself was not only filled with lovely artwork but also a beautiful story!

5 Cherries is a book that was originally written in Italian! Author/illustrator Vittoria Facchini has written several books, but this is the first one to be published in the U.S.  I am so glad that it was because I believe it is such a gem. I referred to this book as a “celebration of imagination” and it is just that. This is a book that parents and teachers will want to read to their kids to show them what a powerful tool the imagination is!

5 Cherries is a Celebration of Imagination

5 Cherries is the story of 2 siblings. Their mother gives them each 5 cherries. One child can’t believe he has received so few…5 is not enough! The other child receives her 5 cherries and she can see oh so much more. We are then taken on a journey that shows the power of imagination. Surely there isn’t very much you can do with 5 cherries…right? Oh but there is…especially when imagination is involved! Maybe you will make a bouquet out of your cherries, maybe you can use them as lipstick to make your face look pretty, or perhaps you can balance them on your nose! There is no end to the possibilities if you only use your imagination.

5 cherries book page

5 cherries book page

5 cherries book page

5 cherries book page

 

5 Cherries is such a heartwarming book. Children and parents will absolutely love the illustrations…they are so special and different from any book I have seen! The brightly colored cherries stand out against the crisp white of the pages! I absolutely loved that it shows that there is no limitation to your imagination. My kids loved the book and definitely had a couple of laughs at some of the uses for the cherries! Something else that we noticed was that the children look nearly identical. The only real differences are in the shoes and the fact that one has a red bow and the other a blue. As the story goes on it becomes increasingly difficult to tell which child is which…by the end, there are no bows or shoes. Just a world full of imagination.

 

Book Info

As I mentioned above, the book is written and illustrated by Vittoria Facchini. It was translated into English by Anna Celada. 5 Cherries was published by Enchanted Lion Books in 2017. You can find 5 Cherries on the Enchanted Lion Books website here on or Amazon here. A very big thank you to Enchanted Lion Books for sending me this beautiful book to review and share!

To check out another of my favorite beautiful books, head to this post!

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10 Beautiful Children’s Books about Birds

10 Beautiful Children’s Books about Birds

We adore birds. We love learning about them, watching them, feeding them, and reading about them! There are so many amazing books available about birds that would be fantastic additions to your homeschool lessons! I went a little rogue with this booklist and didn’t include […]