Books, Reviews

The Magic of a Full Moon and Clouds!

Another Monday, another dusting off the archives, and this time to a day of a full moon and clouds (just like the original blog title said!)

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The Books: Once Upon a Time of a Full Moon and Clouds

[Jan 17, 2022] The two books in this section are from my original post recovered from the archives, from mid-January 2012. I have retained the original reviews (once upon a time when my now 19 yo and almost 16 yo still enjoyed being read to, or at least loved being part of a read-aloud group!) I am not complaining though since now we discuss the books we read; with my son, both of us often recommend books to each other and read them as well.

A Full Moon is Rising

Book Info

Title: A Full Moon is Rising
Author: Marilyn Singer
Illustrator: Julia Cairns
Genre:  Children’s Poetry/Stories in Verse (6 – 10 years, and up)
Publisher: Lee & Low Books; Reprint edition (June 1, 2011)
Source: Digital Review Copy from NetGalley

Thank you to Lee & Low Books for sending me a digital review copy via NetGalley

Get it at Amazon

Description

(excerpted from Amazon): A children’s book takes readers on a whirlwind tour of the world to discover an amazing collection of full moon celebrations, beliefs, customs, and facts. We’ll visit India, Israel, Morocco, China, Australia, and many more places.

My Thoughts

Beautiful paintings and poems illustrate how children across the world view the same wonderful moon as they lead their daily lives. Marilyn Singer and Julia Cairns take us on a colorful journey woven in short flowing poems as children from Australia, China, India, Israel, the U.S., Colombia, Mali, Mexico, Canada, Turkey, South Africa.

I loved all the poems and the bright, detailed, descriptive watercolors accompanying them but my favorite lines are from one poem set in Cape Town, South Africa

“Such smart children.” Mama laughs.
“Bright as the moon!”

My daughter loved that children all across the world see the same moon she is seeing here in the US (specifically that her cousin in India – my niece). Her favorite poem was the one set in Australia – a beautiful painting accompanying it too  “Its glow builds a magic staircase  from the mudflats to the sky.

The end pages of the book are not to be skipped as they contain a brief overview of the phases of the moon (Gibbous is my favorite word there) and a brief description of the festivities mentioned in the poems.

Rating:  B from me and from the kids Reading level: Ages 7 and up  

Willa Bean’s Cloud Dreams

Book Info

Title: Little Wings #1: Willa Bean’s Cloud Dreams
Author: Cecilia Galante
Illustrator: Kristi Valiant
Genre:  Children’s Valentine’s Day Books (6 – 9 years, and up)
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers (December 27, 2011)
Source: Digital Review Copy from NetGalley

Thank you to Random House Children’s Books for sending me a digital review copy via NetGalley

Get it at Amazon

Description

(excerpted from Amazon): Most cupids have soft straight hair, rosy cheeks, and silky white wings. Not Willa Bean! She has a crazy mess of hair, a million-bajillion freckles, and bright purple wings with silver tips. And lately those bright purple wings with silver tips have been giving Willa Bean an awful lot of problems. They won’t fly! Cupid Academy is starting soon, and what if she’s the only cloudbound cupid there? Nope, nope, nopeity, nope. Willa Bean just has to make her wings behave!

My Thoughts

A cute story and a wonderful first of a series. I love that Willa Bean has flaws, is different from others; yet she loves that she is different, has great friends and treasures her friend and family as much as she enjoys finding treasures. 

We watch Willa as she dreadfully prepares for her first day of school where she will have to – fly. And she cannot – she does not want to reveal this to others (her best friend and her family know but does the whole school have to?)
The author does a good job of capturing the joys of a little girl finding pleasures in the smallest of treasures, like a shiny stone on the road; her relationship with her friend, her pet, and her family is sweetly captured; and her fears as well as how she works to overcome them.

I am looking forward to reading the next in the series as are both my kids. I read this book to my almost six-year old daughter over a few days and my son, who is nine, could not resist coming up and hearing what was up with Willa Bean each day (from one chapter per day to three chapters per day towards the end was what they wanted!)

Rating:  B from me and B+ from the kids (I wished it could have been longer) Reading level: Ages 6 and up (if you are reading to them, then 6 years of age and up, else it is an early reader – a chapter book)  

full moon surrounded by clouds...

The Books: This Very Day of a Full Moon and Clouds

This section includes a book reviewed more recently (on Goodreads but missed posting it here) and one for another book reviewed today, on this very day of a full moon and clouds outside!

If My Moon Was Your Sun

Book Info

Title: If My Moon Was Your Sun
Author: Andreas Steinhöfel
Illustrator: Nele Palmtag 
Genre:  Children’s Multigenerational Books/ Books on Aging andl Illness (8 – 12 years, and up)
Publisher:  Plough Publishing House; Har/Com edition (November 1, 2017)
Source: Digital Review Copy from NetGalley

Note: The physical copy includes a read-along CD audiobook featuring twelve classical pieces for children by Georges Bizet and Sergei Prokofiev.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for this eARC. This review is long overdue and totally my honest opinions of this book. [From my Goodreads review]

Get it here

Description

Did you hear the story about Max, the boy who kidnapped his grandfather from a nursing home? You didn’t see it on the news? Well, let me tell you about it.

Max lives in a small town, much smaller than yours. His grandpa is losing his memory, but still remembers quite a bit. You can imagine how they hurried, Max and his grandpa, followed by old Miss Schneider, who insisted on coming along. Why were they in a hurry? Because everyone was after them. Max had skipped school to rescue his grandpa, and they were just starting out on what promised to be one of the best days of their entire lives.

My Thoughts

A wonderful mix of sweetness and sadness – if I had to use just one phrase to describe this book, that would be it.

The obvious love that Max and hid grandfather share is visible throughout the book. Grandfather is losing his memory he keeps having the Great Forgetting. He is now in a nursing home due to the care he needs. Max misses his grandfather and wants to spend time with him, like he used to when grandpa was better He worries that grandfather will not remember the love Max has for him.

Reading about the Great Forgetting did get me all teary-eyed as I recalled episodes of my dad’s forgetfulness when he was recovering from a major brain surgery years ago; and then again, a few months earlier, just before he passed way, when he was fighting cancer.

So, one day, he plans a cool escape from the nursing home. The two of them make a trip to grandpa’s special ‘Happy Place’ accompanied by Mrs.Schneider (who is another resident at the nursing home). Oh what a wonderful time they have, in spite of the Great Forgetting that keeps visiting grandfather.

I truly loved the illustrations in this book – the colors, the emotions of the characters portrayed so well, and the style used as well. They lend that perfect accompaniment to this sweet, sad, hopeful, emotional story.

In Summary

A wonderful book for kids (and adults) 8 and older who can understand and work through the emotions and issues mentioned in this book.

This Book is Made of Clouds

Book Info

Title: This Book is Made of Clouds
Author and Illustrator: Misha Blaise 
Genre:  Children’s Weather Books (4 – 10 years, and up)
Publisher: Muddy Boots; Illustrated edition (May 1, 2021)
Source: Library

Get it here

Description

This Book Is Made of Clouds is a playful invitation for young minds to explore how they are connected to nature, the universe, and all of humanity. Everything is connected to everything else, from the ocean’s phytoplankton who create half of the oxygen we breathe, to the clouds whose rain nourishes the trees from which books are made (including this one!).

Filled with cheerful, detailed illustrations, this Book is Made of Clouds promotes holistic thinking and inspires wonder for the world around and within us all. Perfect for curious kids, elementary classrooms eager for STEAM content, and caregivers who want to encourage children to contemplate our oneness with the earth and all of humanity.

My Thoughts

I have to say I loved the illustrations in this book. The vibrant, detailed, and imaginative artwork that fills every page is sure to attract the attention of every reader, no matter their age. The narrative is engaging, lyrical, and shows readers how we are all connected; not just people around the world, but each of us with every one and everything around us.

I love how Misha Blaise uses the refrain “everything is connected to everything else” to gently enforce this concept of connection throughout the book. Young readers see how the sun helps the plants grow, and thus, in effect, “we eat the sun” when we are crunching on an apple; or how “the earth is our home” (in addition to it being our home in truth) in the sense that all we use to build and make our home our home somehow relies on the earth.

Don’t miss the activities included in the backmatter. This book lends itself to so many discussions, ranging from the STEAM related to the more profound.

In Summary

A beautiful book that invites you read it (and see that gorgeous artwork) over and over again, and be awed by the interconnectedness we have with each other and everything around us.

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full moon with title 4 children's books to enjoy anytime: 
(and perfect to read under the light of a full moon!)

Disclaimer: I received no compensation for my reviews, and formed these opinions of the books without influence from anyone.

All books go toward the It’s Monday, What Are You Reading? at TeachMentorTexts

Related Reads

And Now, the End of this Post

Dear reader, have you read any of these books? Or similar books? What thoughts does a full moon among clouds inspire in you? Or does it bring back any memories?

8 thoughts on “The Magic of a Full Moon and Clouds!

  1. It might be that I am getting on in years, and also that I am a grandparent, but the book that struck me most here was If My Moon Was Your Sun. I’ve put a hold on it from my library. Thanks for the introduction to it.

  2. I hadn’t heard of any of these books, and I love giving books to the children in my family, so I plan on picking up all of these to give during Valentine’s Day. Thank you for sharing them with us.

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