Monday, May 4, 2020

Fiona It's Bedtime & Ansley's Big Bake Off Reviews

I just love being able to review books for kids! It gives me so much to look forward to when I have grandbabies! These are the kinds of books I want to have on my shelves for years to come. Thanks to Zonderkidz for allowing me to review both of these books.

Fiona It's Bedtime
Illustrated by: Richard Cowdrey
Publisher: Zonderkidz
ISBN: 9780310767558


It’s time to go to bed and Fiona can’t fall asleep until she’s said “GOODNIGHT” to all her animal friends at the zoo.
Fiona, It’s Bedtime, a follow-up to the New York Times bestseller Fiona the Hippo and A Very Fiona Christmas, is the latest book to showcase the adorable internet sensation from the Cincinnati Zoo. Fiona is beloved by fans all over the world, and her newest book is the perfect bedtime read-aloud for cuddling with your little one. Fiona, It’s Bedtime, illustrated by New York Times bestselling artist Richard Cowdrey, features everyone’s favorite hippo who wanders through the zoo saying “GOODNIGHT” to all her animals friend before she heads to bed and settles into slumber.  
With a cover that shines with spot UV and foil, this book is perfect for Fiona enthusiasts, fans of Sandra Boynton’s The Going to Bed Book, and any animal lover who’s ready for a read-aloud rhyming bedtime story.

My Review:

Once again I've fallen in love with Fiona the hippo. The story is absolutely precious and the illustrations are beautiful. Just like in my A Very Fiona Christmas book review, you can't help but think it's delightful.

I actually read the book on video for my sister-in-law's daycare on her Facebook page. It was fun to read this story having not even cracked the page to see it first!

The rhyme on each page will keep the children eager to hear how the animals fall asleep as a family. And honestly, the illustrator picked the cutest animals at the zoo. How can anyone, young or old, resist an otter family, an adorable giraffe, or a pile of meerkats? It's a fun way to walk through the zoo since we can't visit them right now. The other piece I like is that it pulls in the new koala family that we meet from the Christmas book. They're the first animals Fiona visits as they go to sleep.

I can't wait to have grandbabies one day because I'll be reading all of the Fiona stories to them!

Ansley's Big Bake Off
by Kaitlyn PittsCamryn PittsOlivia Pitts with Janel Rodriguez Ferrer
Publisher: Zonderkidz
ISBN: 9780310769606


Ansley and her family move to a new city to seek a new start after the death of their mother. But that also means ... a new school, new friends, new everything! Fortunately, even though no one could ever take the place of their mom, Aunt Samantha has moved in to help Dad and all the girls.
As they all settle into their “new normal,” Lena finds comfort in singing and songwriting. Ashton and Amber record videos documenting their lives and email them to their grandmothers. And Ansley pursues her own dream of becoming an Olympic gymnastics champ when she signs up with Grace and Power Gym. But she soon realizes that using her creativity to bake treats and share them with those she loves brings her as much (or even more) joy—especially since it brings back memories of precious afternoons she spent in the kitchen with her mom.
So which dream should she follow? Ansley prays for guidance, and it seems her prayers are answered when she gets the opportunity to both perform as a gymnast and take part in a The Big Bake Off at the Roland Lake Founders Day Fair. The Grand Prize is a trophy and a spot on the local morning show, Awake with The Lake!
But her dreams of taking home the trophy and being on TV are threatened by her strongest competition: Taylor, a mean girl from her new school who not only teases Ansley and rejects her offers of friendship but comes from a family of professional bakers.
Still, with the loving and prayerful support of her own family behind her, Ansley knows she has a real shot at winning. But with Taylor in the mix, will Ansley be able to rise to the occasion? Or will she just get burned?
Ansley's Big Bake Off—an important addition to the Faithgirlz series:
  • Features diverse characters
  • Is an engaging read for girls ages 8–12
  • Is part of the Accelerated Reader (AR) program
  • Is a perfect birthday gift from parents and grandparents to tween girls, and is great for Spring Break and summer vacation reading

My Review:

This is the kind of book I wish I'd had available when my girls were in middle school. Positive stories for girls to read that have a faith base with its characters. It was very limited, or so it seemed, 15 yrs ago.

As a mom, I appreciate that there's a good, diverse group of characters in each of the books! Not only that, this story in particular shows how we're all different and have different dreams. On top of that, you don't have to stop with just one dream. You can be good at a variety of things.

Also, with this age group the book is targeting, I still like that there are some pictures of the characters scattered throughout the book. I think that's great for kids who are visual and like having a better idea of what the characters look like and what they might be doing in a particular scene.

As for the story itself, it was well written and in a way that teaches some very good lessons. One that is really important for young kids to learn is empathy. We don't always know what someone is going through and if someone's hurt, they sometimes hurt others. It was great reading Ansley's change towards Taylor as she gained more insight to her.

It's also important for kids, obviously girls who are mostly reading these books, to learn how to support each other and to cheer each other on. Chasing dreams isn't easy, but doing it with people who support you and love you makes all the difference in the world.


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Woven by Words by Mimi B is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.