Review: Auntie Claus by Elise Primavera

Auntie_ClausIn the spirit of the holidays, one of my absolute favorite books to share with young children is the delightful story of Auntie Claus.  Yes, it’s exactly what it sounds like.  But the youngest readers won’t get it right away, keeping the magic going until almost the very end.

Little Sophie has always adored her glamorous but eccentric aunt. There’s just something not quite right about the woman known as Auntie Claus.  Most intriguing to young Sophie is her aunt’s annual “business trip” right around Christmas every year.  When Sophie’s curiosity gets the best of her, she finds herself in for the trip of her life.  Along the way, though, she discovers more than she bargained for.  Most importantly, she finds out what the true meaning of Christmas is.

Kids will enjoy the magic of the story, and the trip to the North Pole is nothing short of amazing.  Older readers will love the puns and references to Christmas sprinkled throughout the story.   Add this one to your shopping list!


Buy It Now:  Auntie Claus deluxe edition

Review: Stained by Cheryl Rainfield

20140725-085358-32038195.jpgI’m a sucker for young adult books,especially those with a strong female protagonist. And when a book comes highly recommended from a friend, it’s a must read for me.

Sarah has had a hard life. Although she comes from a solid and loving family, a large port wine stain on her face has made her the subject of stares, giggles, rejection, and teasing for as long as she can remember. She’s created her own little world with a couple of select friends and her passion for reading and writing comic books. Still, she longs for a somewhat normal life where people will look past her appearance. Then everything changes when she becomes the victim of an abduction. As she tries to escape her captor, she finds herself examining her beliefs and drawing upon inner strength she didn’t know that she had.

This is a book about many things. It’s about teasing and bullying, going far beyond the normal teenage stuff. It’s about being strong at heart while still being vulnerable to both words and actions. And it’s about standing up for yourself and others, even when the world around you makes it hard.

This one was a tough read. It doesn’t sugarcoat the horrors that Sarah went through, and the descriptions are pretty graphic. However, it’s not meant to be a rose-colored glasses kind of story. In order to appreciate Sarah’s strength and resilience, you really have to feel her experiences. Still, use caution if choosing this book for younger readers. Although it was a book that I couldn’t put down, it was highly disturbing at times.


Buy It Now: Stained