Reviews written by Melissa A. Craven, Indie Manager

102 results - showing 1 - 15
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Ordering
March 31, 2019
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
A must read for His Fair Assassin fans.

While I thoroughly enjoyed this book, I was equally frustrated by it. Marketed as a new duology set in the world of His Fair Assassin, readers new to LaFevers should be able to jump into Sybella and Genevieve’s story with ease. That was not the case for me. I spent...

March 31, 2019
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Dry
Young Adult Fiction
Warning: This book will make you desperately thirsty

It is a true testament to the authors’ skill that I was literally parched while reading this book. Readers will want to curl up with Alyssa and Kelton’s story along with a nice tall glass of ice water. The drought that ultimately leads to the Tap-Out in...

March 31, 2019
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Young Adult Fiction
Groundhog Day meets Pretty in Pink in a hilarious mashup with a great lesson about labels

After a move to Punxsutawney, PA, Andie is determined to experience her first kiss with her crush, Colton. After a summer of flirting with the object of her desire, she’s anxious for her first day at Punxsutawney High, but she gets caught up in an endless loop reliving her first...

March 16, 2019
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)  
 
5.0
Learning Value 
 
5.0
Celebrate the world

Dia de los Muertos, Day of the Dead, teaches young readers all about this ancient tradition celebrated in Mexico and other countries around the world. A perfect learning experience for those children unfamiliar with the holiday who want to learn more about this tradition their friends celebrate. There is...

March 16, 2019
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Kids Fiction
So Many Sounds

So Many Sounds is a fun bedtime story that will surly engage the child who doesn’t want to sleep, and slowly transition them from the noisy sounds of everyday things to the quiet sounds of bedtime. Written with a fun little rhyme, So Many Sounds is perfect for...

March 16, 2019
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
“For all children who come to this country seeking freedom and safety.”

Gittel’s Journey tells the story of a brave young Jewish girl immigrating to the United States from Easter Europe, all on her own. And only nine years old! This beautiful, heartwarming story is based on true events the author’s ancestors experienced when arriving on Ellis Island afraid and alone,...

March 16, 2019
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Mr. Finch

The Flight of Mr. Finch is a sweet story about the power of friendship and the importance of self-sacrifice. Lovely illustrations in a watercolor style flow in a red and green motif throughout the story. The book includes a pull out section revealing a beautiful jungle illustration as well. ...

March 16, 2019
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)  
 
5.0
Learning Value 
 
4.0
Kids Nonfiction
Meet The Artist

J.M.W. Turner was a landscape painter and student of the Royal Academy of Arts in 1789. As a young teen during the Romantic Period, he studied the fine arts and ultimately became one of Britain’s most loved artists, proving you’re never too young to become an artist. This...

November 28, 2018
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
N/A
Kids Fiction
This is one of those books I wish more people knew about

Privateer themed books can so easily go the way of the ridiculous and over the top. Not so with Privateer’s Apprentice. As surprising as it is authentic, young Jameson’s story reaches out to grab the reader and pull them along on his exciting and sometimes harrowing adventure. ...

November 17, 2018
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)  
 
5.0
Learning Value 
 
5.0
Massive Mountains! Supersize Storms! Alien Atmospheres!

Dr. E’s Super Stellar Solar System reads like your child’s favorite comic book. Each chapter begins with a graphic novel style story with beautiful illustrations and fun characters. Behind the comic book guise, the author does a great job teaching potential young science enthusiasts all about the amazing...

November 17, 2018
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)  
 
5.0
Learning Value 
 
5.0
How Space Science and Sea Science Interact

Jennifer Swanson does a great job teaching potential young explorers all about the amazing similarities between space exploration and deep-sea exploration. Astronaut Aquanaut: How Space Science and Sea Science Interact is a beautifully presented book with full color images and illustrations. The information is educational with...

November 11, 2018
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
A dark and gritty adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft’s short story, the Call of Cthulhu

This vibrant retelling of H.P. Lovecraft’s short story has been artfully adapted into a beautifully illustrated graphic novel that captures the cult-like mythology of the “old ones” and the creepy atmosphere of the story itself. Shephard has captured the look and feel of a modern graphic...

November 11, 2018
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
A retelling perfect for reluctant readers

The Hound of the Baskervilles is one of Arthur Conan Doyle's finest Sherlock Holmes novels, written years after “The Final Problem” a short story intended to be the last Sherlock Holmes story. This most famous of Sherlock Holmes’ stories has been carefully adapted into a beautifully...

November 11, 2018
Overall rating 
 
3.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
3.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
3.0
A good reading exercise for newly independent readers

Time Jumpers: Escape from Egypt offers lengthier chapter book reading, while still offering delightful illustrations more familiar to young readers just beginning to read all on their own. Large fonts with only a few short paragraphs per page, Time Jumpers is easy reading, yet the story...

November 11, 2018 (Updated: November 11, 2018)
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Young Adult Fiction
A quirky, dark, compelling and sometimes frustrating read I could not put down

Adrienne Cahill finds herself on an expedition to remote Siberia looking for the fabled Osinov family with her stepfather, Dan, a scholar who is convinced he knows where this notorious family of hermits lives. Adrienne sees it as the perfect opportunity to write an article about her experiences—debunking Dan’s theories—and...

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