Dad of Divas' Reviews: October 2017

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Book Review - How to Draw Almost Every Day: An Illustrated Sourcebook

How to Draw Almost Every Day: An Illustrated Sourcebook




About the Book
The perfect book for budding artists, How to Draw Almost Every Day challenges and inspires you to draw one simple illustration each day of the year. Organized as a calendar, illustrations are presented as daily exercises.

Each image is broken down with step-by-step diagrams, making the process easy to understand. You’ll learn to draw items from everyday life, like food and clothing, as well as seasonal images including snowmen and pumpkins. We have also included inspiring project photos to show you how to incorporate the doodles into greeting cards, calendars, invitations, gift wrap, and more!



My Take on the Book
This is a very practical book with fun illustrations and step-by-step instructions on how you can start to take action to be drawing everyday with small or large drawings. I love how this book makes it so easy to start a journey that will lead you daily into a new routine!


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Book Review - Zen Pencils--Inspirational Quotes for Kids


Zen Pencils--Inspirational Quotes for Kids



About the Book
Now for kids! Based on the adult New York Times Bestseller, Zen Pencils: Cartoon Quotes from Inspirational Folks, this special editon for children will inspire them to reach for the stars!

Explorers like Amelia Earhart and Chris Hadfield. Pioneers like Marie Curie and Margaret E. Knight. Modern icons like John Green and the Dalai Lama.

Zen Pencils--Inspirational Quotes for Kids


These are only a few of the trailblazers you’ll meet in this collection of cartoons and quotes. Let their words of wisdom lead you to greatness, reflection, and discovery. Each inspiring quote is transformed into a compelling story that unfolds before your eyes. Follow the illustrated adventures of dragon slayers, warrior monks, ballet dancers, and professional wrestlers—all while hearing from some of the great voices of our past and present.

Zen Pencils--Inspirational Quotes for Kids


Now for kids! Based on the adult New York Times bestseller, this special edition for children will inspire them to reach for the stars.


My Take on the Book
This was truly an inspirational book. My daughters loved how the book was broken down and how all of the quotes were from so many people from so many different walks of life. I have even seen my daughters re-reading the book which is always a good sign! I highly recommend this to all!

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Book Review - Just for Fun: Perspective


Just for Fun: Perspective



About the Book
Just for Fun: Perspective takes a complicated topic and makes it easy and fun for aspiring artists and art enthusiasts! Even if you've never picked up a pencil or paintbrush, you can follow the simple, step-by-step instructions, and create realistic, proportionate artwork using perspective.

Featured subjects start with basic lines and shapes, then slowly progress with each new step to fully rendered artwork. Just for Fun: Perspective saves the technical aspects of drawing and painting for more advanced students and prefers to touch upon the key concepts and fundamentals of perspective.

Learn about the differences between one-, two-, and three-point perspective; vanishing points; and methods for measuring and dividing areas of a subject or scene proportionately. Use basic lessons on depth and distance to add color and create your own drawings and paintings with step-by-step instructions for shapes, architecture, portraits, animals, street scenes, and more.

With approachable and contemporary drawings and paintings as well as lots of tips, instructions, and inspiration, Just for Fun: Perspective will have even the most artistically challenged individuals mastering perspective in no time.



My Take on the Book
Perspective is something that takes some time to understand. This book gives you a ton of great advice for any aspiring artist. You will learn a ton of things about differences in different types of perspective, so much more than I really knew. This is a great book that I learned a ton from and I know you will learn a ton as well!

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Saturday, October 21, 2017

Book Review - Sketch Now, Think Later


Sketch Now, Think Later



About the Book
Sketching is more popular than ever, but busy lives leave almost no room for sitting down with a pad and pen, and practicing. Many people give up on their potential hobby (and artistic outlet) because they feel they just don’t have the time to lay the groundwork. Here’s a secret though: you do have time each day to practice, you just need to incorporate sketching into your daily life.

Sketch Now, Think Later covers the tools, techniques and tips that author and Urban Sketching Correspondent of Boston Mike Daikubara has developed in his more than 15 years as a practicing artist, and will show you how to fully dive into any sketching situation with limited time and tools, and still be able to produce memorable, great looking, fun sketches!



My Take on the Book

My daughters love to sketch and read and this book incorporates both into one. The book is practical and offers some amazing advice and step-by-step instructions on how to be able to sketch more fluidly without the fear of getting into your head to much.  The book has a ton of valuable ideas and great illustrations / infographics that will walk you through how to be even more successful at your drawings. This is a great book that anyone that wants to sketch should read!


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Book Review - Phoebe and Her Unicorn in the Magic Storm

Phoebe and Her Unicorn in the Magic Storm



About the Book
The first Phoebe and Her Unicorn graphic novel!

Phoebe and Marigold decide to investigate a powerful storm that is wreaking havoc with the electricity in their town. The adults think it’s just winter weather, but Phoebe and Marigold soon discover that all is not what it seems to be, and that the storm may have a magical cause. To solve the case, they team up with Max, who is desperate for the electricity to return so he can play video games, and frenemy Dakota, who is aided by her goblin minions. Together, they must get to the bottom of the mystery and save the town from the magic storm.


My Take on the Book
This is a great additional book in the series. Not only do you get an amazing graphic novel with a wonderful story, but you also get action, humor and a bit more. The book also has great characters that you have come to love from past books and will regain again in this great book too!

The book is funny, but it also gives you a deeper glimpse into these characters, more so than what I have seen in the past. While the author could continue to show more, hopefully we will see and learn more in future books too.

This is a great book that has a ton of heart. It is a great book for all ages!


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Book Review - Kiranmala and the Kingdom Beyond: The Serpent's Secret

Kiranmala and the Kingdom Beyond: The Serpent's Secret



About the Book
MEET KIRANMALA:

INTERDIMENSIONAL DEMON SLAYER

(Only she doesn't know it yet.)

On the morning of her twelfth birthday, Kiranmala is just a regular sixth grader living in Parsippany, New Jersey . . . until her parents mysteriously vanish and a drooling rakkhosh demon slams through her kitchen, determined to eat her alive. Turns out there might be some truth to her parents' fantastical stories-like how Kiranmala is a real Indian princess and how she comes from a secret place not of this world.

To complicate matters, two crush-worthy princes ring her doorbell, insisting they've come to rescue her. Suddenly, Kiran is swept into another dimension full of magic, winged horses, moving maps, and annoying, talking birds. There she must solve riddles and battle demons all while avoiding the Serpent King of the underworld and the Rakkhoshi Queen in order to find her parents and basically save New Jersey, her entire world, and everything beyond it . . .


My Take on the Book
This is a great new book that offers you adventure, great characters and more! Every page was a journey that led you step by step to the very great conclusion of the book. There was humor, adventure, action and more. We also loved the characters, and with daughters, I loved the main character, a girl who is now a demon fighting princess.  Kiranmala is fierce, fun and a true heroine, and we loved following her journey and so will you!


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Friday, October 20, 2017

Book Review - Baby Monkey, Private Eye

Baby Monkey, Private Eye



About the Book
Who is Baby Monkey?

He is a baby.

He is a monkey.

He has a job.

He is Baby Monkey, Private Eye!

Lost jewels?

Missing pizza?

Stolen spaceship?

Baby Monkey can help...

if he can put on his pants!

Baby Monkey's adventures come to life in an exciting blend of picture book, beginning reader, and graphic novel. With pithy text and over 120 black and white drawings accented with red, it is ideal for sharing aloud and for emerging readers.

Hooray for Baby Monkey!

My Take on the Book
This was a fun story with a a baby monkey that was both cute and a private eye. The book is one that was a quick read and has beautiful illustrations. The mystery of the missing jewels was a fun case and you get to find out who stole the jewels through not only the story but the beautiful imagery too.


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Thursday, October 19, 2017

Book Review - Eerie Elementary: Classes Are Canceled!

Eerie Elementary: Classes Are Canceled!



About the Book
Eerie Elementary is falling apart! Floors are splitting, walls are crumbling, and students are in serious danger! Principal Winik announces that the school must be torn down. But Sam, Lucy, and Antonio are not sure that is the answer . . . Could this all be part of Orson Eerie's plan to live forever? Sam and his friends must work fast to find out!



My Take on the Book
My daughter loves to read this great series, not only because of the world that is created, but also because of the characters that are a part of the world too! This is a great new addition to the series. We loved seeing the plot, the twists and turns as well as the mystery that surrounds the book itself. The book is a fast read and we definitely did not want to put the book down once we started!

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Book Review - Geronimo Stilton Micekings: The Helmet Holdup

Geronimo Stilton Micekings: The Helmet Holdup



About the Book
Oh, no! One of the special miceking helmets in miceking leader Sven the Shouter's private collection has been stolen! Could it have been taken by the vilekings-the rival mouse clan? The micekings journey to the vilekings' village to find out... and while they're there, the dragons attack! Can all the mice work together to save their fur?



My Take on the Book
Another great book that incorporates humor, fun and characters that you have come to love. The book also brings in some great illustrations that draw you further into the book. This book has a great story that continues to make you wonder what will happen. Can they all work together to defeat the dragons? Read and find out!

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Book Review - The Littlest Valentine

The Littlest Valentine



About the Book
From the New York Times bestselling author that brought us The Littlest Pilgrim comes a sweet new Valentine's Day companion filled with family, food, and love.

Emma may be the littlest in the Valentine family, but she knows that she has what it takes to help the family business get ready for the holiday. But Emma just can't seem to do things the right way like the bigger members of her family, no matter how hard she tries. Will Emma find a way to help her family on Valentine's Day, or is the littlest Valentine just too little?

A sweet Valentine's Day story to share with the littlest of readers!




My Take on the Book
Such a cute book that captures that you do not have to be big to make a difference. This was a wonderful book that all young readers will enjoy. Even my older kids enjoyed reading this as it really affirms the importance of everyone in a family!


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Book Review - Anne of Green Gables: A Graphic Novel


Anne of Green Gables: A Graphic Novel



About the Book
The magic of L.M. Montgomery’s treasured classic is re-imagined in a whimsically-illustrated graphic novel adaptation perfect for newcomers and kindred spirits alike.

When Matthew and Marilla Cuthbert decide to adopt an orphan who can help manage their family farm, they have no idea what delightful trouble awaits them. With flame-red hair and an unstoppable imagination, 11-year-old Anne Shirley takes Green Gables by storm.

Anne’s misadventures bring a little romance to the lives of everyone she meets: her bosom friend, Diana Barry; the town gossip, Mrs. Lynde; and that infuriating tease, Gilbert Blythe. From triumphs and thrills to the depths of despair, Anne turns each everyday moment into something extraordinary.



My Take on the Book
This is a great book that really brings the Ann of Green Gables story alive in a whole new way. The imagery in the graphic novel was fun and it really captures the original story in so many ways. The book brings forth the magic of Anne and the world that she lives in.You will love the characters, the illustrations the story and more!


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Book Review - Goats of Anarchy: Polly and Her Duck Costume




About the Book
Polly and Her Duck Costume tells the true story of Polly, a little blind goat who was rescued by Leanne Lauricella, rescuer of farmyard animals and founder of the immensely popular Instagram account The Goats of Anarchy. Polly has some trouble adapting to her new life until her new mom gives her a warm and fuzzy duck costume, which turns out to be the perfect fit! Follow along with Polly as she finds love with her new family, gains confidence, and makes new friends. The perfect tale to inspire and delight animal lovers, Polly and Her Duck Costume pairs beautiful illustrations with a truly heartwarming tale readers of all ages will adore.


My Take on the Book
This was such a cute book. We loved that it was a true story and that in the end you even get to see some great images of the real goat too. The book really shows the love between goat and owner as well as that how the goat's blindness does not stop the goat from living its' life. Even with older kids they loved the story and they loved meeting Polly too!


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Sunday, October 15, 2017

Book Review - Learn to Draw Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Learn to Draw Star Wars: The Force Awakens




About the Book
Learn to Draw Star Wars: The Force Awakens brings modern Star Wars iconography to life in stunning graphite pencil, transforming memorable characters including Rey, Poe Dameron, BB-8, and Kylo Ren (along with Leia, Han Solo, and R2-D2) into detailed, realistic portraits. Lucasfilm collaborator and professional artist Russell Walks guides artists step by step and provides insightful notes, drawing tips, and memorable moments for each character from the film. This book allows readers to develop and strengthen their drawing skills, while experiencing this legendary series in a whole new light.


My Take on the Book
This is a great book that allows you to really draw some amazing Star Wars characters. This is definitely a book that is not for the beginning artist as while there are steps it does go quite fast, with a lot of shading and more. That being said, there are some very cool images that you can make but it does take time and patience. This is a great book for any Star Wars fan!


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Book Review - If You Give a Man a Cookie: A Parody

If You Give a Man a Cookie: A Parody



About the Book
#1 New York Times bestselling author Laura Numeroff, author of the hugely popular children’s book If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, offers this hilarious parody of her own book for the man in your life.

If you give a man a cookie...he's going to want milk to go with it...God forbid he should get it himself.

If You Give a Man a Cookie is a woman’s commentary about her helpless man and the chain of events that leads him on a journey from the bed to the bathroom to the couch and back to bed at nightfall.


My Take on the Book
My daughters grew up on the If you Give a Mouse a Cookie and other books by Laura Joffe Numeroff. This book was such a funny parody on the book and while it does have some stereotypes within the book, it is still a fun book that all will enjoy. The book follows a similar path as many of her other books have in the past. You can tell that the illustrator within this book is different than in past books, but Brian Ajhar's work is still great! The book is geared for women to read as it does portray men as helpless and a bit hapless too, but in reading this as a man, I know it is all in fun.


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Book Review - Dream Jumper: Curse of the Harvester


Dream Jumper: Curse of the Harvester



About the Book
Ben and Jake are back for more! With the Dream Jumper business making them some serious money, all seems to be going great. But Ben is put to the test in a way he never saw coming when a new and formidable foe invades his nightmares. With Jake backing him up and a mysterious newcomer in the Dream World, Ben may have a chance to overcome this new evil. He just has to keep his friends safe long enough to figure out how!



My Take on the Book
This was a great story. My youngest read this and found that even though she did not read the first book she loved it and now she wants to read the second as well. She loved the characters in the book. The plot of the story moved quickly and the artwork was great. Will Jake be able to save everyone from having a bad dream, read this book and find out!

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Saturday, October 14, 2017

Book Review - Tyrannosaurus Ralph





About the Book
Dinosaurs plus bullies plus aliens plus hijinks equal a wacky new graphic novel kids will love!

Ralph is just trying to get home from school without getting picked on by the local bully.

He's not trying to run smack into that bully. He's also not trying to wake up hours later in the body of a Tyrannosaurus Rex. And he's DEFINITELY not trying to do battle in an alien arena in order to save Earth from the evil Cloberus Crunch.

Unfortunately for Ralph, this is exactly what happens.

Armed only with a new body (with very tiny arms) and his wits, Ralph is expected to not only defend himself and his planet in hand-to-hand combat with ferocious aliens, he must also navigate a new world filled with all sorts of creatures Ralph has never imagined, in which it can be difficult to tell friend from foe.

This zany, hilarious story will appeal to anyone who loves dinosaurs, aliens, and adventure.

My Take on the Book
This was a great book that was filled with a ton of humor, action and great artwork throughout the book. The characters in this book were memorable and even though the story is a bit different, it was a fun romp through a world unlike our own. As mentioned, the artwork was stunning and really jumped off the page. I loved reading this along with my daughters!


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