Blog Tour +Review+Giveaway for This Impossible Light by Lily Myers

Published by Philomel Books Genres: Poetry, Young Adult
four-half-stars

Welcome to The Impossible Light by Lily Myers book tour! Today is my stop on the tour and I am eager to share my review for this thought-provoking book.

 

BOOK SUMMARY:

Sixteen-year-old Ivy’s world is in flux. Her dad has moved out, her mother is withdrawn, her brother is off at college, and her best friend, Anna, has grown distant. Worst of all, Ivy’s body won t stop expanding. She’s getting taller and curvier, with no end in sight. Even her beloved math class offers no clear solution to the imbalanced equation that has become Ivy s life.

Everything feels off-kilter until a skipped meal leads to a boost in confidence and reminds Ivy that her life is her own. If Ivy can just limit what she eats the way her mother seems to she can stop herself from growing, focus on the upcoming math competition, and reclaim control of her life. But when her disordered eating leads to missed opportunities and a devastating health scare, Ivy realizes that she must weigh her mother’s issues against her own, and discover what it means to be a part of and apart from her family.

AUTHOR BIO:

Lily Myers (www.lilymyerswrites.com) graduated from Wesleyan University, where she competed on the slam poetry team and won Best Love Poem at the 2013 College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational for her poem “Shrinking Women.” Lily has also written for NEDA’s youth site, Proud2BMe, and their magazine, Making Connections. She lives in Seattle, Washington. You can follow Lily on Twitter @lmyerspoetry.

MY REVIEW:

This Impossible Light is a book written in verse that deals with the heavy and not always pleasant topics of body image, eating disorders, divorce, loneliness, depression and the relationships between mothers and daughters. While reading Myer’s verses you can’t help but to be drawn into Ivy’s world, where everything is falling apart.

The summer before Ivy’s first year, her parents decide to get divorced. To make matters worse, her older brother Sky is moving out, and her best friend Anna has been distant after being away for three months in Paris. Everything seems to be going against her will, but the one thing Ivy feels she can control is her body.

Lily Myers creates a deep and haunting tale in This Impossible Light. She does not shy away from perfectly expressing those hidden moments of loneliness, pain, sadness most people never show to those around them. As well as the struggles of those suffering/dealing with depression and especially eating disorders go through. How every day they must wake up to face those same demons over and over again, while at the same time, those closest to them have no idea anything is wrong. It is so sad, but so brutally true.

Through the elegant and powerful verse of This Impossible Light we are told Ivy’s story. We see her journey and struggles and (thankfully) her process towards recovery with help from her family and friends. I am so glad that the author focused only on Ivy. Myers did not feel the need to  “throw in” any romantic situations. I feel if she had done so it might have distracted the reader from the truth of the story.

This Impossible Light filled me with a variety of feelings, and gave me so much to think about and process. While never in the same situation as Ivy, my past self can completely relate to some of the darkness she feels. If you are looking for puffy clouds and unicorns, this is not the book for you. Your heart will hurt, your eyes will tear up, and breaks will be needed, but at least you will come out at the end of reading this book with your spirits lifted and most importantly with a feeling of hope (so hang in there).

Thank you to Philomel Books at Penguin Books for providing me with an ARC of This Impossible Light by Lily Myers in return for an honest review.

FOLLOW THE TOUR:

June 5 – YA Wednesdays – Spine Poetry

June 6 – Quiet in the Chaos – Review

June 7 – The Book Wars – Review

June 7 – Bookworm Everlasting – Review & Photograph

June 8 – ButterMyBooks – Book Look

June 9 – The Plot Bunny – Review

GIVEAWAY:

Enter for a chance to win one (1) of five (5) copies of This Impossible Light by Lily Myers (ARV: $17.99 each).

a Rafflecopter giveaway

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on June 5, 2017 and 12:00 AM on June 12, 2017.  Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about June 15, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.

four-half-stars

Blog Tour + Review : Little Excavator by Anna Dewdney

Published by Viking Books for Young Readers Genres: Children's Books, Children's Picture Book

Welcome to the blog tour for Little Excavator by Anna Dewdney. If the name sounds familiar, it is because Anna wrote the beloved LLAMA LLAMA series.  In Little Excavator we are introduced to a brand new character to love called “Little E”.

 

About The Book:

There’s Loader and Dump Truck, Backhoe and Crane. They’re ready to transform a vacant lot into a neighborhood park. And who wants to help most of all? Little Excavator! But are there any jobs for someone so small?This is a book for fans of Anna’s work (her signature rhyming text and illustrations make this a perfect read aloud) and for all kids fascinated with things that go! And it ultimately includes the message that bigger doesn’t mean better—when you’re small you can accomplish big things too.

About the Author:

Anna Dewdney was a teacher, mother, and enthusiastic proponent of reading aloud to children. She continually honed her skills as an artist and writer and published her first Llama Llama book in 2005. Her passion for creating extended to home and garden and she lovingly restored an 18th century farmhouse in southern Vermont. She wrote, painted, gardened, and lived there with her partner, Reed, her two daughters, two wirehaired pointing griffons, and one bulldog. Anna passed away in 2016, but her spirit will live on in her books.

 

Thank you to Penguin/Viking Young Readers for providing me with a finished copy in exchange for an honest review. #PRHPartner

 

My Review:

All Little Excavator wants to do is help build the new neighborhood park. He might be small, but he’s got heart and spirit.  This is one of the many lessons this charming book has to offer, along with a variety of rhyming texts that is sure to keep the kiddies entertained. The beautiful illustrations are bold and full of color.

Children will be drawn in by Little E, as he tries to find the right job to do, and how he (though small) can help in a BIG way. At first he seems to be more in the way than helping, but by the end of the tale, it is his small size that helps complete the park.

The lesson of “size doesn’t matter” and that anyone (big or small) can make a contribution are lessons that every child needs to learn, and be encouraged to act on in daily life. This is one of my very favorite lessons from Little Excavator. Most importantly, this lesson flows through the story, and isn’t “preached” at but gently demonstrated.

Little ones will have a blast reading Little Excavator out loud either in a group or with their caregivers. My nephews love playing with their trucks, and they especially loved making all the noises of the various construction vehicles as I read this book with them. They were very happy that Little E was able to help out in the end.  Little E was a big hit with them and I highly recommend it for little readers everywhere.

Children’s Graphic Novel Review: Super Narwhal and Jelly Jolt by Ben Clanton

Children’s Graphic Novel Review: Super Narwhal and Jelly Jolt by Ben ClantonSuper Narwhal and Jelly Jolt (Narwhal and Jelly) by Ben Clanton
Published by Tundra Books on May 2nd, 2017
Genres: Children's Books, Graphic Novel
Goodreads
five-stars

Happy-go-lucky Narwhal and no-nonsense Jelly find their inner superheroes in three new under-the-sea adventures. In the first story, Narwhal reveals his superhero alter-ego and enlists Jelly to help him figure out what his superpower is. Next, Narwhal uses his superpower to help a friend find his way back home. In the third story, Jelly is feeling blue and Narwhal comes to the rescue. Ben Clanton showcases the joys of friendship and the power of believing in yourself and others through this irresistible duo.

After reading the first book in this series and “meeting” Narwhal and Jelly, I knew any future books about these adorable little creatures were a must read for me. In this latest edition Narwhal has decided to come out and reveal his superhero self. Narwhal even convinces Jelly to join the fun as Narwhal’s trusty sidekick. Together they seek to discover what the Narwhal’s superpower is and even go on a few other mini adventures too. 


Did I mention the cuteness of these two? I love the simplistic illustrations and the vivid colors. Our heroes have never looked more adorable. The author perfectly captures the heartwarming friendship between our little superhero duo and shows the reader the power of encouragement. Filled with good messages about friendship and believing in yourself and bringing out the best in others, you can’t help but want to share this book with all young readers. 


Full of fun facts, silliness and waffles Super Narwhal and Jelly Jolt is sure to delight readers of all ages…even grownups. I can’t wait for the next book and to see what adventures Narwhal and Jelly will be up to next. Until then, make sure to pick up your very own copy of Super Narwhal and Jelly Jolt today, and join our little under the sea friends on their latest adventure. 

 

Thank you to Tundra books and Netgalley for providing me with an e-ARC in return for an honest review. 

five-stars

Graphic Novel Review: Spill Zone #1) by Scott Westefeld, Alex Puvilland (Illustrator)

Graphic Novel Review: Spill Zone #1) by Scott Westefeld, Alex Puvilland (Illustrator)Spill Zone (The Spill Zone, #1) by Scott Westerfeld, Alex Puvilland
Published by First Second on May 2nd 2017
Genres: Graphic Novel, Science Fiction
Goodreads
five-stars

Three years ago an event destroyed the small city of Poughkeepsie, forever changing reality within its borders. Uncanny manifestations and lethal dangers now await anyone who enters the Spill Zone.
The Spill claimed Addison's parents and scarred her little sister, Lexa, who hasn t spoken since. Addison provides for her sister by photographing the Zone's twisted attractions on illicit midnight rides. Art collectors pay top dollar for these bizarre images, but getting close enough for the perfect shot can mean death or worse.
When an eccentric collector makes a million-dollar offer, Addison breaks her own hard-learned rules of survival and ventures farther than she has ever dared. Within the Spill Zone, Hell awaits and it seems to be calling Addison's name.

Something mysterious has happened in the area that is now the Spill Zone. No one knows exactly what, and the only people who dare venture into the territory is the HAZMAT crew and Addie. Addie lives with her sister just outside the Spill Zone. Her parents are gone, taken by the bizarre and unexplained happenings of the zone. She doesn’t know what has happened to them, but now she must do whatever it takes to take care of herself and her younger sister Lexa.

Addie risks exposure to the Spill Zone, and takes photographs of the eeriest scenes, from what used to be her hometown. The Spill zone is full of strange and frightening creatures, not to mention potential traps and dangers. Addie sells her photographs to collectors in order to support herself and her sister.  Lexa herself has changed since the Spill Zone happened, and she no longer speaks.  The loss of her voice is a mystery to everyone, and because of the strangeness of it all Lexa’s only friends are her stuffed animals and dolls. Vespertine, her favorite raggedy doll is always by Lexa’s side, but there’s something not quite right about that doll.

When Addie receives an offer she can’t refuse, she risks her life and goes deeper into the Spill Zone than she has ever been before. Addie doesn’t know what she will find there, or what dangers she might accidently bring back home with her.

Scott Westerfeld has masterfully created a graphic novel that will keep you on the edge of your seat. From just a few pages you, you are immediately “sucked” into the story, and you can’t help but worry about the strong willed and determined Addie.  You hold your breath in hope that she will return home safely. The suspense is thick within these pages, and you know something dark is lurking just around the corner.  Along with Alex Puvilland’s creepy and distinctive illustrations, the story truly comes to brilliant life.

The cliffhanger at the end had me literally screaming “NOOOOOO”! I was not ready for the story to stop, and I need to know what happens next ASAP.  Will Addie be okay? Will Lexa speak?  What’s up with the creepy doll?  I highly recommend this graphic novel to lovers of sci-fi and suspense. Anyone looking for something new, different and special will not be disappointed by the creativity flowing out of this story.

 

 

Thank you to 01Firstsecond Books / Macmillan for providing me with a finished copy in exchange for an honest review.

five-stars

Book Review: Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin, illustrated by Daniel Salmieri

by Adam Rubin, Daniel Salmieri
Published by Penguin Genres: Children's Books
Goodreads
five-stars

“Dragons love tacos. They love chicken tacos, beef tacos, great big tacos, and teeny tiny tacos. So if you want to lure a bunch of dragons to your party, you should definitely serve tacos. Buckets and buckets of tacos. Unfortunately, where there are tacos, there is also salsa. And if a dragon accidentally eats spicy salsa… Oh, boy. You’re in red-hot trouble.”

Who ever knew Dragons loved tacos so much? Clearly the authors of this hilarious and entertaining book do. They share their expertise on throwing the best taco party on the block and what dragons will expect. Most importantly, they tell us that dragons do NOT like spicy salsa. In fact, there will be all sorts of trouble if a dragon eats spicy salsa. So make sure to hide it, better yet bury it if you can.

This entertaining and fun story is filled with dragons of all kinds, the vivid and bold illustrations are sure to grab your attention. Readers will find something new and unexpected happening on every page, so even the shortest of attention spans can be remain engaged. Young readers will delight in the silliness and be inspired to throw their own Dragon taco party.

If you love dragons, tacos, and parties, you need to read this book! Just make sure to keep the spicy salsa hidden…in case any dragons drop by.

 

Are you ready to make your own delicious tacos? Try out my yummy and healthy recipe (little dragons and big dragons alike will love it!)

 

Sticky and Sweet Lime and Honey Chicken Tacos

Sweet and Sticky Lime Chicken Thighs – An easy and quick one skillet meal including sticky, tender and delicious chicken thighs rubbed with a homemade spice rub and brushed with an amazingly sweet lime honey sauce.

 

Ingredients

FOR THE SPICE RUB

  • 1 teaspoons, or to taste, paprika (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper

FOR THE HONEY SAUCE

  • ⅓ cup honey
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • ½ of a Fresh squeeze lime

FOR THE CHICKEN

  • 1 tablespoon virgin olive oil
  • 6 to 8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • green onions, for garnish

FOR TACOS

  • Whole wheat soft tortillas (medium size)
  • 6 to 8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • green onions
  • grated lime rind (for a citrus kick/garnish)
  • shredded lettuce for topping
  • sour cream (to drizzle on top of lettuce)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375F.
  2. Place skillet or grill pan over medium high heat with olive oil.
  3. Combine the spice rub ingredients and mix until thoroughly combined Rub the chicken with the prepared spice rub and toss to coat (if you like you can let this marinate for a few hours before you cook it).
  4. Add chicken to skillet and cook for 5 minutes on each side, or until browned.
  5. Prepare the honey sauce by combining honey and apple cider vinegar and lime juice; stir until well incorporated.
  6. Remove chicken from heat and pour honey sauce over the chicken thighs, turning to coat.
  7. Bake in over for 25 to 30 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.
  8. Remove from oven and let stand couple minutes.
  9. Cut chicken into slices
  10. Place whole wheat soft tortilla on plate, place chicken on the tortilla and garnish with green onions, shredded lettuce and a drizzle of sour cream (you can also top off with your favorite salsa).
  11. Serve and ENJOY!

 

About The Authors:

Adam Rubin is the New York Times best-selling author of a half dozen critically-acclaimed picture books including Secret Pizza Party and Robo-Sauce. He spent ten years working as a creative director in the advertising industry before leaving his day job to write full time. Adam has a keen interest in improv comedy, camping and magic tricks.

Daniel Salmieri has illustrated many fantastic picture books, including the New York Times bestseller Robo-Sauce. He grew up in Brooklyn, New York, constantly drawing and painting images of ninja turtles, dinosaurs, and fighter jets (not in the same scene…), and graduated from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

 

BREAKING NEWS!

Now, I’m not sure you’ve heard, but the tacos are becoming extinct! We need your help to save them (and to keep the dragons happy and the parties coming). We all must do our part to #SavetheTacos! You can help by pre-ordering Dragons Love Tacos 2: The Sequel.

To help us save the tacos, Penguin Kids is sending everyone who pre-orders Dragons Love Tacos 2 a bumper sticker and entering them to win the Ultimate Taco Party gift basket!

 

And if that’s not enough, you can enter to win a Dragons Love Tacos Book and Toy Set!

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on April 3, 2017 and 12:00 AM on May 1, 2017.  Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about May 5, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.
 
TOUR SCHEDULE:

Week One:

April 3 – Pirates n’ Pixie Dust – Taco Scavenger Hunt

April 4 – Margie’s Must Reads – Review + Recipe

April 5 – A Story a Day – Review + Taco Craft

April 6 – The Book Shire

April 7 – Swoony Boys Podcast – Recipe + Taco Craft

 

Week Two:

April 10 – Ali’s Book Nook – Review + Recipe

April 11 – Mundie Kids – Review + Taco Party Checklist

April 12 – The Children’s Book Review – When You Invite a Dragon to Dinner…

April 13 – Reading is Better with Cupcakes – A World Without Tacos?!

April 14 – My Bookbloom – Review + Taco Activity

 

Week Three:

April 17 – As They Grow Up – Review

April 18 – The Book Nut – Taco Soup Recipe

April 19 – YA Book Nerd – Missing Taco Hunt

April 20 – Inspiration Laboratories – Dragons Love Tacos Birthday Party

April 21 – In Wonderland – Review + Taco Salad Recipe

 

Week Four:

April 24 – A Homeschool Mom – Review + Chili Pepper Experiment

April 25 – The Plot Bunny – Review + Recipe

April 26 – No BS Book Reviews – Taco Craft

April 27 – My Little Poppies – Review

April 28 – Happily Ever Elephants – Review

five-stars