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Tuesday, October 20, 2020

You're Pulling My Leg Blog Tour (review & giveaway)


Today the You're Pulling My Leg! Junior Blog Tour is stopping by with a review and giveaway...



You’re Pulling My Leg! Junior 

Allen Wolf 

Morningstar Games 


Have you ever eaten too much pizza? Gotten gum stuck in your hair? Surprised a friend?


You’ll laugh out loud as you and your friends and family try to fool each other with hilarious stories from your lives as you play this storytelling game. After you choose a question, the secret flip of the coin tells you if your answer should be true or made up. 


When you hear a story, vote points on if you think a player is telling the truth or pulling your leg. You’ll win points if you’re right but lose them if you’re wrong. Think you can bluff your friends and family? Don’t let them fool you! Score enough points, and you win! 


This game book features over 600 questions and instructions on how to play this game in person or over a video call with two or more people. Also available as an ebook! 

 

 

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You’re Pulling My Leg! Junior is a laugh-out-loud and fun interactive game from Allen Wolf and Morningstar Games. Players take turns telling true and false stories based on prompts given and voting on their true/false status. 

 

This kid friendly edition of the original game is chock full of various engaging and unique prompts, providing hours of wild lies and surprising truths. With simple instructions, easily understood prompts, and helpful materials included in the book, this is a game that kids will be able to enjoy and navigate on their own. I love that, while many of the prompts are sure to bring plenty of laughs, many other prompts encourage thoughtful discussion, critical and imaginative thinking, and practice of both storytelling and listening skills. 

 

Perfect for both in-person and online play, You’re Pulling My Leg! Junior can be used in various settings, from classrooms to parties, and is sure to provide hours of engaging and exciting entertainment! 







Allen Wolf has won multiple awards for his storytelling as an author, filmmaker, and game creator. 

Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram 




Win a copy of 

You’re Pulling My Leg: Junior! 

The folks at Morningstar Games have generously offered one new copy for one winner. 

US only 

Ends 10/26/2020 

Winner will be emailed and must claim prize within 48 hours 

Word Spelunking is not responsible for lost, damaged, stolen prizes in the mail 

 


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Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Fantastic New and Upcoming Books to Look For


I have another awesome list of wonderful new and upcoming books to share with y'all today...


Books for Kids 

 

Beautiful, fun, and educational picture books from Prestel: 




How to Spot an Artist  

Danielle Krysa 

9/1/20 

Prestel Junior 

Help kids discover and nourish their inner artist with this vividly illustrated, funny, and endlessly encouraging dose of positive reinforcement. 
 
With over 200,000 Instagram followers, Danielle Krysa has helped a lot of people overcome the fear that they "aren't creative." In books like Creative Block and Your Inner Critic Is a Big Jerk she calls out the self-criticism that keeps us from claiming and expressing our artistic abilities. Now she uses her characteristic playfulness, lively illustrations, and humor to help kids overcome negativity about their artistic endeavors--and to help them redefine what being an artist means. Every page delivers encouragement to the kid who thinks artists all live in cities, or that art has to look like something familiar, or that painting and drawing are the only way to make art. In a world that drastically undervalues creative freedom, Krysa's whimsical paintings and collages joyfully proclaim that art is essential and that artists are everywhere. Additionally, a page at the back of the book includes ideas for art projects--because who wants fewer art projects? Nobody! 

 


The Magic Doll: A Children’s Book Inspired by African Art 

Adrienne Yabouza  

Illustrated by Elodie Nouhen 

9/8/20 

Prestel Junior 

Families of all kinds will appreciate this simple tale of love and longing, motherhood and magic. 
 
In a small village in West Africa, a young girl explains the special way she was born. Her mother had difficulty getting pregnant, so she seeks help in the form of a doll which she treats like a human baby, carrying it on her back and covering it with kisses. Months go by and finally the woman's belly begins to grow! This beautiful story explores the Akua-Ba fertility figures of the Akan people of Ghana, while also depicting the deep love a mother has for her children. Elodie Nouhen's subtle, gorgeous illustrations combine collage and prints that are reminiscent of traditional African art, while remaining uniquely contemporary. Each spread communicates the look and feel of West Africa--the blazing yellow of the sun, the deep blue of the sky, the richly patterned textiles, and vibrant flora and fauna. Adrienne Yabouza's text echoes the rhythms of life in her homeland--the Central African Republic. The book closes with a short introduction to African art and the importance of fertility statues in African cultures. 

 


School 

By Britta Teckentrup 

9/15/20 

Prestel Junior 

Young readers will recognize themselves in this compassionate portrayal of school life by best-selling author Britta Teckentrup. 
 
Few authors move as easily between the different worlds children inhabit as Britta Teckentrup. Whether she's leading the littlest readers through the seasons, or exploring the science of bird feathers, Teckentrup's warm and wonderfully detailed illustrations are a marvelous portal to feelings, facts, and fun. In her newest book, Teckentrup takes readers inside a busy school to follow different students through their day--in class, during free time, at lunch, and through swimming lessons. We come across a variety of faces and expressions that reflect the enormous range of emotions and experiences that each school day brings. There are arguments and hurt feelings, encouraging hugs and deeply felt smiles. The gentle text explores issues that we've all encountered--bullying and loneliness as well as friendship and achievement. While the school in this book could exist anywhere, every reader will find a piece of her or himself in its beautifully and sensitively wrought story. 

 


The House of Happy Spirits: A Children’s Book Inspired by Friedensreich Hundertwasser 

By Geraldine Elschner 

Illustrated by Lucie Vandevelde 

9/5/20 

Prestel Junior 

In this fairy tale-like story a beloved tree is saved and children learn how architecture can co-exist with nature. 
 
The Austrian artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser believed that humanity and nature shared a harmonious partnership, a philosophy that he demonstrated with his architectural creations. Filled with color-saturated illustrations that echo Hundertwasser's bold style, this story introduces young readers to the idea of environmentally conscious and playful architecture. When construction starts on a new building in Lea's neighborhood, she fears that her favorite tree will be chopped down. For days she watches anxiously as the tree is covered up and surrounded by bricks. Finally, she learns that the tree has been spared and made the centerpiece of a fantastic new building, where it will live a long and healthy life. Lucie Vandevelde's joyful drawings convey a kid's-eye view of city life, complete with people, pets, automobiles, and machinery. As the new building emerges, readers will come to learn about some of Hundertwasser's celebrated and offbeat principles--such as the rights of tenants to paint the walls outside of their windows, that trees should be given their own rooms, and that "straight lines lead to the downfall of humanity." A brief biography of Hundertwasser at the end of the book fills readers in on the work of this pioneering artist whose ideas were once radical but are now integrated into many architectural concepts. 

 

The Scary Book  

by Thierry Dedieu 

9/15/20 

Prestel Junior 

A perfect blend of silly and scary, this oversized lift-the-flap board book shows children what's hiding inside some creepy creatures. 
 
Snakes, bats, and spiders aren't that frightening--but just wait till you see what they're like on the inside! This delightfully ghoulish book is filled to the brim with creatures perfect for some Halloween fun. Whether it's a big bad wolf or a skeletal ghost, each monster is hiding its really horrible side beneath a foldable flap. Lift the foldout on the crab to reveal sharp teeth and tentacle tongues or pull down the flap on the spider to discover its recently caught snacks. Thierry Dedieu's colorful illustrations bring humor and lightheartedness to many spine-chilling creatures. A perfect blend of silly and scary, this big board book helps kids overcome their worries with laughter. Encourage your children to embrace their spooky side with this Halloween treat! 

 

The Little Dancer: A Children’s Book Inspired by Edgar Degas 

By Geraldine Elschner 

Illustrated by Oliver Desvaux 

9/22/20 

Prestel Junior 

One of Degas's most celebrated works comes to life in this vibrantly illustrated story of the young ballerina who inspired the artist. 
 
Degas's ballerina paintings are well known and admired and his sculptural work Little Dancer Aged Fourteen--the only sculpture he exhibited in his lifetime--is particularly beloved for capturing the essence of a ballerina. This book tells the fictional story of a young girl who dreams of becoming a ballet dancer. Jeanne auditions at the Opera Garnier and moves with her mother, a laundress, to Montmartre where life becomes consumed by rehearsals and classes. One day she meets Mr. D, an artist who asks Jeanne to be his model. As Mr. D works on his sculpture, Jeanne prepares tirelessly for an important performance. The book culminates with Jeanne triumphing at the Opera--and Mr. D completing his sculpture with her help. Olivier Desvaux's gorgeous illustrations, which recall Degas paintings, bring readers into Jeanne's world--the studio where she spends her days, the tiny apartment where she sleeps with her mother, and Mr. D's atelier, where he preserves her story forever. Readers will learn about the life of a young dancer in 19th-century Paris, and at the end of the book they will learn even more about one Degas's most intriguing works. 

 

This Thing Called Life  

By Christian Borslap 

10/6/20 

Prestel Junior 

From the smallest specks of life to the largest creatures, this engaging picture book shows the many shapes and forms life takes all around us. 
 
What is life? It's constantly moving, growing, reproducing, and dying. It's happening now, all the time, and it's everywhere around us. From little helicopter seed pods that float through the air to blue whales in the ocean, the world is filled with all different kinds of odd and familiar kinds of life. This whimsical picture book helps young readers see the connections between all living things. Author and illustrator Christian Borstlap's furry, feathery, smooth, and spiky creatures crawl, eat, growl, fly, and interact with one another. While most of his creations are imaginary animals, they all depict real things that organisms must do to survive and thrive. Bold and quirky illustrations tug at kids' imaginations and help demonstrate complex concepts that can be hard to put into words. The book leaves lots of room for discussion and for new discoveries with each reading. 

 

Fun middle-grade: 

 

The War With Grandpa (movie tie-in edition) 

By Robert Kimmel Smith 

9/29/20 

Yearling 

Yearling Books is pleased to publish a movie tie-in edition of Robert Kimmel Smith’s THE WAR WITH GRANDPA (Ages 8–12 | On sale September 29, 2020) to time with the October 9 theatrical release. This laugh-out-loud story about a boy who leaps into battle when he’s forced to share a room with his grandfather stars Robert De Niro, Uma Thurman, Christopher Walken, Jane Seymour, Rob Riggle, Cheech Marin, and Oakes Fegley and makes for perfect movie viewing for the entire family. 


 Peter is thrilled that Grandpa Jack is coming to live with his family. That is, until Grandpa Jack moves right into Peter’s room. Like any grandson, he loves his grandpa, but . . . he wants his room back. Now Peter has no choice: he declares war! 


 With the help of his friends, Peter begins to devise outrageous plots to make Grandpa surrender the room. But even though the pranks escalate, Grandpa Jack is tougher than he looks. Rather than give in, Grandpa Jack plans to get even. They used to be such great pals, but now Peter is wondering . . . has their war gone too far? 


 The movie tie-in edition of THE WAR WITH GRANDPA features cover art from the film and includes the original illustrations by artist Richard Lauter. First published in 1984, this classic story is sure to gain a completely new readership following the release of this family-friendly film. 


 Look for the new companion novel The War with Grandma, coming summer 2021! 

 


Pet that Dog: A Handbook for Making Four-Legged Friends 

By Gideon Kidd and Rachel Braunigan 

10/20/20 

Quirk Books 

From 11-year-old dog-loving Gideon Kidd of the viral social media account "I've Pet That Dog," Pet That Dog! A Handbook for Making Four-Legged Friends is a highly-illustrated guide to meeting, caring for, and learning about humans' best friend. 
 
Like many kids (and adults!), Gideon loves to pet dogs. He loves petting dogs so much, he asked his mom if he could make a website showcasing all of the dogs he's pet. That website eventually became the Twitter account "I've Pet That Dog," and since April 2018, Gideon has amassed over 300,000 fans of his heartwarming and delightful tweets. In a world filled with strife and sarcasm, Gideon's account brings a bit of sunshine into so many lives. Even celebrities like Lin Manuel Miranda and Kirstie Alley are fans of Gideon's sweet and wholesome content. With each tweet, Gideon presents a photo of himself with a dog he has met and a few lines about the dog's story. He has now pet and profiled over 1,000 dogs! 
 
Pet That Dog! A Handbook for Making Four-Legged Friends is an illustrated guide by Gideon and his mom. The handbook includes a guide to meeting, petting, and caring for dogs, facts about dogs, quizzes, and more. The interactive format is perfect for dog lovers — as well as kids who are curious about dogs, but may be nervous around them. The "How to Pet a Dog" section is full of helpful do's and don'ts. 
 
The bond between kids and dogs is timeless — and with a social media platform like "I've Pet That Dog" attached, this handbook is both evergreen and solidly of the moment. 

 

For older readers: 


The Black Friend: On Being a Better White Person 

By Frederick Joseph 

12/1/20 

Candlewick Press 

From the perspective of the friend everyone should have, Frederick Joseph offers an essential read for white people who want to be better about race—and people of color who long to see their experiences validated. 
 
“We don’t see color.” “I didn’t know Black people liked Star Wars!” “What hood are you from?” For Frederick Joseph, life in a mostly white high school as a smart and increasingly popular transfer student was full of wince-worthy moments that he often simply let go. As he grew older, however, he saw these as missed opportunities not only to stand up for himself, but to spread awareness to the white friends and acquaintances who didn’t see the negative impact they were having and who would change if they knew how. 
 
Speaking directly to the reader, The Black Friend calls up race-related anecdotes from the author’s past, weaving in his thoughts on why they were hurtful and how he might handle things differently now. Each chapter includes the voice of at least one artist or activist, including Tarell Alvin McCraney, screenwriter of Moonlight; April Reign, creator of #OscarsSoWhite; Angie Thomas, author of The Hate U Give; and eleven others. Touching on everything from cultural appropriation to power dynamics, “reverse racism” to white privilege, microaggressions to the tragic results of overt racism, this book serves as conversation starter, tool kit, and invaluable window into the life of a former “token Black kid” who now presents himself as the friend many of us need. Back matter includes an encyclopedia of racism, providing details on relevant historical events, terminology, and more. 

 

The Fangirl’s Guide To the Universe 

By Sam Maggs 

10/27/20 

Quirk Books 

From notable geek girl Sam Maggs, The Fangirl's Guide to the Universe is the ultimate handbook for teens living the nerdy life. 
 
Fandom, pop culture, feminism, cosplay, cons, books, memes, podcasts, vlogs, OTPs and RPGs and MMOs and more—there’s never been a better time to be a fangirl, or a better guide to navigate the wide universe of fandoms. This handbook is packed with tips, playthroughs, and cheat codes, including: 
 
· How to make nerdy friends 
· How to rock cosplay 
· How to write fanfic with feels 
· How to defeat internet trolls 
· How to attend your first con 
 
And more! Featuring wisdom from Sam and insightful interviews with fangirl faves like Danielle Paige, Rainbow Rowell, and Preeti Chhibber, The Fangirl’s Guide to the Universe highlights the joys of fandom community and offers a fun, feminist take on the often male-dominated world of geekdom. This refreshed edition updates The Fangirl’s Guide to the Galaxy including new interviews. 

 


The Fangirl’s Journal for Leveling Up 

By Sam Maggs 

10/27/20 

Quirk Book 

A companion to The Fangirl's Guide to the Universe, this guided journal by Sam Maggs includes prompts, interviews, and illustrations to help you get in touch with your dreams, plans, and faves. 
 
Fandom is an excellent way to discover who you really are. Your OTPs, NOTPS, and even OT3s actually say a lot about you, if you're willing to listen hard enough. With this journal, you can examine your current fandoms, explore new ones, and even push the boundaries of your own creativity. Start your very own transformative works with prompts for fanfic and fanart, fill checklists for what to watch or read next, learn definitions of fandom terms, and read wisdom from your favorite geeky gals. 
 
The Fangirl's Journal encourages you to be your very best, strongest, loudest, and nerdiest self--and helps you figure out exactly who that might be along the way. 



**I received copies of the titles above for review/feature purposes. All thoughts, opinions, or reviews are my own.