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Thursday, June 12, 2014

TOBY Blog Tour {Review & Interview with Stacy Nyikos}

I'm so excited to have the TOBY Blog Tour stopping by today! Check out my Review of this delightful picture book and my Interview with author Stacy A. Nyikos...

by Stacy A. Nyikos
illustrations by Shawn Sisneros
Stonehorse Publishing

Birds, and crabs, and crocs - oh my! - stand between Toby and his new ocean home. Can he outslip, outslide, out-double flip and dive them? Jump in to find out!

Stacy A. Nyikos’ TOBY is a charming picture book, with an unforgettable little hero that makes quite the splash! Little Toby, a newly hatched sea turtle, must make his way to the ocean, but many obstacles lie in his way: giant sand dunes, mischief crabs, too friendly birdies, and hungry crocs! Will Toby overcome these obstacles and follow his heartsong all the way to the ocean?!

In TOBY, Nyikos crafts a delightful and heartwarming tale that will capture the hearts and imaginations of little readers. With lyrical, sing-songy rhyming lines, Toby the sea turtle's journey from egg to ocean is a super fun and sweet one. Little readers will love joining Toby on his grand adventure and those pesky crabs, crocs, birdies, and sand dunes offer readers the perfect amount of exciting, fun frights and gasp-worthy moments.

Shawn Sisneros’ minimal, bright illustrations wonderfully capture Nyikos’ rhymes. Bold blues, greens, and yellows splash across the pages in eye-catching, but never overwhelming, ways! And sweet, adorable Toby is given such exuberant expressions and spirit!

My Final Thoughts: With its addicting rhymes, captivating pictures, and awesome little hero, TOBY will keep little readers entertained from beginning to end, have them happily rooting for Toby, and excited to learn more about sea turtles!

What three words best describe TOBY?
Ooh, that's a hard one. There are so many, but if I have to pick just three, hmm...curious, adventurous, spunky.
Grab a copy of TOBY and tell us your favorite line or stanza, and your favorite illustration/scene depicted.
It would either be the first stanza or the last:
                        On a sandy little nest
With a happy little shout
Toby cracked apart his shell
And kerploppled headfirst out.
On a gentle ocean current
In a floating little heap
Toby yawned...rolled on his tummy...
And drifted off to sleep.
I love how the first stanza, so full to bursting with energy, sets up the action, and at the same time, how after that energy is spent, the last stanza cuddles the reader with words and rocks them.
What inspired TOBY? Why did you choose to write about sea turtles?
A lot of very excited, energetic young readers inspired Toby. I do a lot of author signings at aquariums, and the number one question I get from children is, "Will you write a story about a turtle?" This went on for almost five years, but I never had a story idea. Then one day, I was coming home from an aquarium signing, and I think all of that collective energy from those eager readers finally hatched its own idea and Toby was born.
Can you tell us three of the most interesting sea turtle facts you know?
Just three? Hmm...
Baby sea turtles have a little claw like device on the tip of their snout when they are in the egg that helps them break it open that's called a carbuncle. What a fun word to say!
A leatherback sea turtle can dive up to 3,000 feet. That's a little more than half a mile, more than 2x around a running track. That's far.
A sea turtle that is resting can stay underwater for anywhere from 4 - 7 hours. The record for a human holding their breath underwater is held by a Swiss diver at 19 minutes, 21 seconds.
What do you love most about writing picture books?
I love that picture books challenge me to tell the most incredible story in the shortest amount of words. I love that they connect me to young readers. And I love that they challenge me to see the world through a child's eyes. It is an amazing view.  
Fill in the blanks:
I’m really awesome at _touching my nose with the tip of my tongue__.
I’m really embarrassed to admit that _I sometimes hug trees__.
The last great book I read was _Aliens on Vacation___.
If you were to create and bake a cupcake inspired by TOBY, what would it look and taste like, and what would you call it?
Okay, that is the most inspiring question I've gotten. It would be green, of course, because turtles are green, and taste like chocolate, because I love chocolate, and be covered in chocolate frosting with green and yellow sprinkles and carried by a crab on top of a pelican on top of a crocodile and be called the Aquatic Tower of Delight.

Thank you so much for stopping by, Stacy! That cupcake sounds fabby fabb fab!!

In a quiet little office/at a comfy little desk/Stacy Nyikos chews on pencils/and scribbles silliness…when she’s not plucking splinters from her teeth, that is. Stacy holds an MFA in Writing (silliness) for Children from Vermont College. She spends her days chasing—or being chased—by stories. Toby is her latest catch. He sees it the other way around—catching her in the form of two very curious but courageous rescue sea turtle’s she met during a behind the scenes tour of her local aquarium. Either way, a lot of pencils got crunched writing his story.

Thanks again to Stacy Nyikos for appearing.  For other stops on the Toby blog tour please check out Stacy's blog

1 comment:

Stacy Nyikos said...

Thank you so much for such an awesome review. And the interview was so much fun!