Books, Current Events, Reviews

Egg Marks the Spot : Blog Tour and Book Review

Today’s featured book is book two of the Skunk and Badger series titled Egg Marks the Spot by Amy Timberlake and illustrated by Jon Klassen. I adored book one; therefore when I was invited for the blog tour of this book, I simply had to be a part of it. Happy Publication Day to Egg Marks the Spot!!

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The Blog Tour and Book Review

Thank you to Algonquin Young Readers for inviting me on this blog tour for  Egg Marks the Spot and for the delightful ARC of this book.

Skunk and Badger

Book Info

Title: Skunk and Badger
Author: Amy Timberlake
Illustrator: Jon Klassen
Publishers: Algonquin Young Readers
Pub Date: Sept 14, 2021
Genre: Elementary/Middle-grade Fantasy
Age-Range: 7 – 10 (and up!)
Source: Publisher ARC

Goodreads || Amazon || Book Depository || Target ||
Barnes and Noble
 || BookShop || IndieBound

Description

When roommates Skunk and Badger head out on a rock-finding expedition, they find surprises behind every boulder in this follow-up to the bestselling, award-winning Skunk and Badger.

“X Marks the Spot!”

Buried in the heart of every animal is a secret treasure. For rock scientist Badger, it’s the Spider Eye Agate he found as a cub, stolen years ago by his crafty cousin, Fisher. For Badger’s roommate, Skunk, the treasure is Sundays with the New Yak Times Book Review. When an old acquaintance, Mr. G. Hedgehog, announces his plan to come for the Book Review as soon as it thumps on the doorstep, Skunk decides an adventure will solve Badger’s problems as well as his own. Surprisingly, Badger agrees. Together they set off on an agate-finding expedition at Badger’s favorite spot on Endless Lake.

But all is not as it seems at Campsite #5. Fisher appears unexpectedly. Then a chicken arrives who seems intent on staying. Something is up!

Indeed!

Secrets, betrayals, lies

. . . and a luminous, late-Jurassic prize.
 
In a volume that includes full-color plates and additional black-and-white illustrations by Caldecott medalist Jon Klassen, Newbery Honor author Amy Timberlake takes readers on a second adventure in the new series reviewers have called an instant classic, with comparisons to Frog and ToadWinnie-the-Pooh, and The Wind in the Willows.

My Thoughts

First Thoughts

So I read book one last year and fell in love with Skunk and Badger (a little more with Badger than Skunk, if I am honest!). It naturally followed that I had to read book two and follow these two adorable characters on more adventures. I am so glad I did!!

What I Loved

Just like I said about Skunk and Badger, I love everything! This book is a delight.

THE STORY ITSELF

What do you do when you find yourself needing to get away, even from that most comfortable brownstone you love? Well, Skunk and Badger go on a rock-finding expedition!

In Egg Marks the Spot, Skunk and Badger wear those packs for their backs and trudge, trudge, trudge their way out of their brownstone.

  • Their destination: Campsite #5 on Endless Lake.
  • Their mission: a) getting away, and b) A Very Important Rock Expedition.

Between Skunk’s yellow Sunsett Adventures backpack with a seemingly endless capacity and Badger’s Heave Ho Hauler backpack, they have packed everything they need for time in the woods; be it a ukulele or cast-iron pots, or snacks and ingredients for every kind of meal.

This sequel definitely made me fall in love all over again with the characters and their whimsical wooded world!

THE CHARACTERS

Of course I love Skunk and Badger, and of course, those quantum chickens too!! Yes, this series has quantum chickens. And while I am yet to meet one of the yaks mentioned in the book, I love them already! For who wouldn’t love a yak who loves to read, and better yet, knows how to write wonderful book reviews? Then there is weaselly Fisher, Badger’s cousin and kind-of-the-villain of the tale. I always enjoy reading about the quirks and weaknesses of weaselly villains, don’t you?!

Like with any good book in a series, this one offers up old, familiar, and loved characters (and discovering unknowns about these old familiars) along with new ones that are bound to surprise and delight the reader. You should read the book to learn about them 🙂 (Did you think I was going to offer more information on them???)

THE ILLUSTRATIONS

I simply don’t know what else I can say than what I said for book one! But here is my attempt.

Jon Klassen’s illustrations charm and delight all over again! As before, they perfectly complement the tale of this darling duo. They add that perfect atmosphere wherever you find them – mystery, thrill and adventure, the comfort of food and friendships, and well, just about anything that is needed.

THE EVERYTHING ELSE

Some of it remains the same as for book one with some updates for book two.

  • Caves and Jurassic surprises, campsites that are simply made for you, and a beautiful lake with perfect skipping stones! What more does one need on a trip to the wild?
  • Still can’t get over those totally creative and cute names for places and people (well, animals) and things; like the New Yak Times Book Review, and more!
  • All those sound effects, the clever use of action to illustrate the “actions speak louder than words” saying, and the cleverer use of the right words!
  • So much learning cleverly inserted into this book; rocks and minerals (of course), recipe ideas from Skunk, as well as camping and hiking tips sneak their way in as we read Egg Marks the Spot. Books like this awe me
  • The humor and heart-tugs combination continues in this book, while we also grapple with concepts like guts (literally) and good old-fashioned greed!
  • And once again, so much more to love (read book one again, and then let the waiting begin for the next in the series!)
WHAT IT LEAVES US WITH

In addition to all the learning and that heartwarming feeling, as well as those smiles that overpower us from time to time as we read the book, it also leaves us (well, me at least) with:

  • A desire to go camping in the woods and to go spelunking,
  • The need to simply spend time with loved ones some more..
  • Oh, and also to get one bright yellow Sunsett Adventures backpack for myself along with some Moving Mussels to help me haul it!

In Summary

Timberlake and Klassen have once again created magic; magic you need to get your hands on (well, eyes on) now. So no matter how old you are, get this book, read it out loud (it is a requirement). It is on sale September 14th!!

Get It Here

Amazon || Book Depository || Target ||
Barnes and Noble
 || BookShop || IndieBound

More Book Info

Praise for Skunk and Badger

Praise for SKUNK AND BADGER:

“Wordy fun, with laugh-out-loud dialogue. It’s impossible not to think of Arnold Lobel’s classic “Frog and Toad” series as you get to know Timberlake’s charming odd couple, Skunk and Badger. …this book defies age grouping. Anyone who has shared a living space — with siblings, classmates or grown adults — can relate to this witty and whimsical tale… Lovers of rocks and chickens, and nerds of all stripes, will crack a smile at the expert descriptions of the main characters’ favorite endeavors…Scratchy yet sophisticated ink drawings by the Caldecott Medal winner Jon Klassen add warmth to the already cozy text…they give this handsomely designed book the look and feel of a classic.”

The New York Times Book Review

“Art by Caldecott Medalist Klassen offers Wind in the Willows wistfulness. Gleeful, onomatopoeic prose by Newbery Honoree Timberlake, meanwhile, keeps readers engaged through laugh-out-loud repetition as she tackles sensitive issues such as elitism, exclusivity, and even science cited for nefarious purposes…Frog and Toad–like in nuance and tenor, this is no old-fashioned story in which Skunk charms Badger and thaws his frozen heart. Badger is in a privileged position, and his refusal to share what he has and to protect Skunk and his guests has a deep and timely significance—one rendered with an expertly light touch.”

Publisher’s Weekly, starred review

“Newbery Honor Book author Timberlake doesn’t underestimate her readers, unhesitatingly incorporating advanced vocabulary and probing Badger’s inner turmoil as he wrestles with change, takes responsibility for his own poor behavior, and tries to see the world through Skunk’s eyes. Klassen contributes a winning mix of vintage-feeling color paintings and black-and-white drawings, which highlight both the story’s sweet and laugh-out-loud moments, as well as it’s understated quirk. It’s a treasure of a book that promises future misadventures from your new favorite odd couple.”

Booklist, starred review

About Amy Timberlake

Amy Timberlake’s novels for young readers have received a Newbery Honor, an Edgar Award, a Golden Kite Award, and the China Times Best Book Award. She grew up in Hudson, Wisconsin, but now calls Chicago home. She is a graduate of Mount Holyoke College, and holds an MA in English and Creative Writing from the University of Illinois. You can find her walking on Chicago’s Lakefront Trail on cool, crisp fall days.

About Jon Klassen

Jon Klassen is a Canadian-born author-illustrator. His books include I Want My Hat BackThis Is Not My Hat, winner of the Caldecott Medal; and We Found A Hat. He is a member of the Order of Canada in recognition of his contributions to children’s literature. He currently lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two sons.

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Thank you once again to Algonquin Young Readers for providing me the physical ARC of this book; and for inviting me for the book tour. All opinions are my own.

And Now, the End of This Post

Dear reader, what do you think of the featured book now that you have read my thoughts about it? I hope you pick it up for yourself or for someone else (but still read it yourself too!) Did it remind you of any other books? Do let me know your thoughts on this post, and as always all comments and recommendations are welcome!

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