Juvenile Pile: Cars & Beasts and Counting Skills

We got 2 new books in the mail last week. The new illustrated Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets arrived on Tuesday afternoon, so we were able to start reading it and take it along on our trip last weekend. It’s beautiful!

And then we had Dino-Racing waiting for us when we got home on Sunday. October 4th was a pretty great book release date for us.

Dino-Racing is Lisa Wheeler’s latest book in the Dino Sports series. I pre-ordered it because Christopher loves racing, and I knew that this book would be a new favorite. He read it to Jim right away, and then 2 nights later he read the first half to me. It has a lot of hard words with the dinosaur names and car terminology, so I read the second half to him. There are 3 races: drag-strip, off-road, and stock-car. It’s another great installment in the series. I’m happy we own it.

4 stars

I didn’t like When a Dragon Moves in Again as much as the first book. This book is about the little boys parents having a new baby. The boy has to be quiet and not play with the baby’s things. He’s mad, and he wants his parents to “send him back.”

The dragon is still there causing mayhem, and the book is written in the same style. But it didn’t have the same magic, even though the ending is cute. Maybe it’s because we never had to deal with a new baby in our house – since Christopher’s an only child.

3 stars

The Penny Pot is part of the MathStart series, which I read about recently. It’s a cute story that incorporates counting money. A little girl really wants to get her face painted at the school carnival, but she doesn’t have enough money. The art teacher has a “penny pot” available at the face painting tent. When kids have extra pennies, they add them to the pot, and eventually the girl has enough money to get her face painted. It’s fun, and I loved the math.

4 stars

Christopher and I read Who Would Win? Tarantula vs. Scorpion and totally creeped ourselves out. We were already grossed out by the giant spider facts and the scorpion babies, and then I accidentally brushed his leg with my hand, and he screamed and jumped. Then I laughed at him, and he started crying. It was hilarious.

The book is pretty cool, just like the others in the series, but it was a little too creepy-crawly for us I guess. The fight in this book was pretty cool. We both correctly predicted the winner.

4 stars

Monster Trucks didn’t make the cut for my 8 Great Halloween Picture Books list, mainly because I could not figure out what was supposed to have happened at the end. The book is a monster truck race with an unexpected winner. Each truck is a different monster – Frankenstein, a vampire, a ghost, a werewolf, etc. The characters are cute, and the text was easy enough for Christopher to read. But it was just too confusing at the end. Has anyone read this? Please explain the ending to me.

3 stars

Then of course we read some additional books in the Ricky Ricotta’s Mighty Robot series.

Christopher read the entire Ricky Ricotta’s Mighty Robot vs. the Voodoo Vultures from Venus last Thursday evening while my mother, my sister, and I were eating dinner. It was hard to follow completely because I wasn’t able to read over his shoulder, but he was really into it, and it seemed like another really fun story. All of these books follow the same basic plot: an evil animal from another planet is trying to take over Earth, and he’s created some sort of villainous monster to help him. The monsters and the Mighty Robot have a fight – in flip-o-rama. They’re so fun.

5 stars

Ricky Ricotta’s Mighty Robot vs. the Mecha-Monkeys from Mars was a little different than the others. Ricky and his robot are skateboarding at the beginning, and the robot uses his parents’ car and destroys it. Ricky is supposed to find a way to pay his parents back. After the classic fighting the bad guy stuff, Ricky is able to get a flying mini-van from the government for helping save the world. It’s pretty cute.

Christopher read this one while driving to my sister’s house and while we were staying there, so he was able to read some to his cousin, Andy, who was interested in the series first. That was pretty fun.

5 stars

Christopher struggled a bit with Ricky Ricotta’s Mighty Robot vs. the Jurassic Jackrabbits from Jupiter. I don’t know if he’s just gotten burned out on the series or if he just didn’t like this book as much. Last night I finally finished the last couple of chapter thinking we could just move on to another book or the next one in the series. He enjoyed listening to it, and he did read the flip-o-rama fight. He enjoys that part of each book the most, especially when the robot does his victory dance. Maybe we’ll take a little break for a week or so and then try the next book. We’ll see.

4 stars

What did your family read this week?

On the blog last year…

Book Review: Carry On (YA)

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