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By Bianca Schulze, The Children’s Book Review
Published: December 9, 2010

This year, many people are predicting that Apple’s iPad will be the number one gift found under the Christmas tree. Assuming that you’ve embraced the notion of e-books—and you’re happy with the saying: “Any reading is good reading!”—we’re certain that you’ll be looking for a couple of book apps to get your iPad recipient started.

From the more traditional pieces of literature to the fun, book-related games; these apps are a great way to kick-start a new iPad library or add to an existing one. Hopefully this list makes your job of sifting through the hundreds or available apps just a little bit easier.

By Bianca Schulze, The Children’s Book Review
Published: December 7, 2010

The holiday season can bring out the “Martha” in all of us. Unfortunately, ’tis the season to zap away the time required to be a “Martha.” So … this book list (or book-ish, at least) can be used a few different ways:

  • The obvious: You are shopping for a budding artist or crafting enthusiast.
  • The handy: Use some of these books to entertain your children while you get busy baking cookies, writing Christmas cards, or putting your feet up while you sip on some spiked hot apple cider.
  • The clever: You like to give books, but the kids you are buying for can’t sit still long enough to read or be read to. Art and craft books are like reading trickery: The craft keeps fingers busy while the instructions keep minds reading.

By Jacqueline Jules, for The Children’s Book Review
Published: December 6, 2010

Award-Winning Author, Jacqueline Jules

TCBR: Can you tell us what inspired you to begin writing the Zapato Power book series?

Jacqueline Jules: Zapato Power was inspired by students I taught when I was working as a school librarian in a Title I school. The second book in the series, Zapato Power: Freddie Ramos Springs into Action, is dedicated to them.

My students, particularly the little boys, kept asking for a book about superheroes. I don’t work in that particular school

By Sherry Rossman, for The Children’s Book Review
Published: December 9, 2010

The Miracle of Rain is a beautifully illustrated, faith based children’s book, which includes a free audio download. Written for ages 4-8, this book is a great adventure tale written to give the “young and the old” a completely new perspective on the fears that haunt them.

Come along with Nora and her cat Molly, as they get caught in the midst of the one thing that frightens them the most: A terrible, booming thunderstorm!  As they try to make their way home,

By Indigo Jones, for The Children’s Book Review
Published: December 5, 2010

What kind of novel is Sign of the Rat?

Sign of the Rat is an illustrated action thriller. The book features a 13 year-old archaeologist. His nickname is “Trouble.” The story is laced with exotic clues and set in Manhattan, Paris and Vietnam. Available in print, Kindle and iPad, with 60+ illustrations. To learn more, visit www.SiliconValleyNovel.com.

By Bianca Schulze, The Children’s Book Review
Published: December 5, 2010

TCBR: With so many blockbuster franchises targeted at YA and tween readers, why should a parent buy this book for their kid?

Indigo Jones: There are three reasons – a gripping story, a cool educational website and supporting Doctors Without Borders.

Sign of the Rat is a compelling thriller that hooks a reader for days. It moves like a rocket ride. Kids love escaping into a vivid, fast-paced adventure with realistic characters. When you finish the book and don’t want to leave the world behind, you can explore the reality behind the fiction at a Learning Center on the Silicon Valley Novel website. It’s a fascinating portal that explores the locations, creatures, art and science behind Sign of the Rat, rather like special features on a Blu-Ray or DVD. Proceeds from sales of the Trouble adventure series are donated to Doctors Without Borders. Each book purchased saves a child’s life.