Dad of Divas' Reviews

Wednesday, June 30, 2010


These fun, interactive, and dynamic children’s books from Candlewick Press will keep kids entertained – whether you are traveling far or staying close to home!


Summer is here, and Little Nye is making icepops to take on vacation. Nella is stuffing too much in a suitcase, and Lester offers to remove some things to lighten the load. Out go toys for beach games, flippers and masks for paddling, and more. But why won’t the suitcase shut now? Good thing that rubber raft is really all they need for their journey -- and the garden hose makes a wonderful nautical spray! Imagination goes a long way when four friends play together -- even when they stay close to home -- in a fresh, enticing story for preschoolers.

March 2010 ~ Hardcover ~ ISBN 9780763648138 ~ Ages 1-3

By Lucy Cousins
Games, activities and more at!

How exciting! Maisy has put her sun hat, pajamas, toothbrush, and camera into a bag, and she’s off to the train station with Panda and Cyril. They’re headed for the seashore, but getting there is only half the fun. Coloring and snacks help pass the time on the ride to the beach, where Maisy can’t wait to swim, collect seashells, build sandcastles, and lots more. At nighttime it feels special to go to bed in a hotel--knowing that tomorrow another vacation day awaits! Maisy’s packing her bags and setting off on a fun vacation in a story that’s perfect for young children making a trip away from home.

May 2010 ~ Hardcover ~ ISBN 9780763647520 ~ Ages 3 and Up


Written by Megan McDonald, Illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds
Games, activities and more at!

Have you ever played Mood Libs? How many fun facts do you know about chewing gum? Is your personality more like Judy’s or her brother Stink’s? From pranks to yoga poses, making paper snowflakes to matching up pet tracks, this book is bursting with quizzes, challenges, crafts, and other cool stuff. Get in the mood to:

  • design your own T-shirt
  • walk through a piece of paper
  • invent your own board game
  • find out what Judy Moody’s name is in other languages
  • and lots more wack-tivities! 

Crazy about Judy Moody? Or just looking for something to do? Stop dawdling--and start doodling and noodling with this RARE activity book.

January 2010 ~ Paperback ~ ISBN 9780763643096 ~ Ages 6-9

More info and extras at!

What’s the difference between a steamer and a schooner? How would you navigate in stormy seas? How are underwater volcanoes formed? And which creatures lurk in the inky depths of the deepest oceans? All this and much more await eager young oceanologists in this exciting handbook, prepared for Zoticus de Lesseps, the young author of OCEANOLOGY, by his tutor, Professor Aronnax, during their around-the-world journey aboard the mysterious Captain Nemo’s NAUTILUS.

Among the book’s special features:
  • four pages of stickers featuring sea creatures, ships, treasure, and diving equipment
  • activities for the reader on nearly every spread
  • a pull-out letter from Professor Aronnax to Zoticus
  • a removable Beaufort scale chart of the winds -- an indispensable resource for seafarers! 

Explore the ocean’s wonders, real and . . . imagined? Dive into this essential handbook to discover some lesser-known secrets of the sea.

July 2010 ~ Hardcover ~ ISBN 9780763648749 ~ Ages 9 and Up

Written by Sarah Hines Stephens, Illustrated by Bethany Mann
Contains 150 fun, foolproof, and must-do activities!
Are you the crafty type? Try drawing some manga or customizing your sneakers. Got a soft spot for science? Dazzle your friends with the old exploding volcano trick, then slyly ease an egg into a bottle. Or you can really get cooking by slipping fortunes into a batch of cookies and folding them like a pro. From taking funny fake photos to breeding butterflies, from running a ninja obstacle course to reading minds to, yes, whipping up some edible fake barf, here is the source for learning how to do absolutely everything. With minimal text and maximal humor, these simple illustrated instructions will have kids psyched to:
-- Investigate (science projects anyone can do)
-- Create (arts, crafts, and personal style)
-- Explore (adventures in the great outdoors)
-- Cook (recipes for tasty -- and terrifying -- treats)
-- Move (sports, games, and playground acrobatics)
-- Amaze (tricks, pranks, and awesome acts).
How many cool things can YOU do? The answer will amaze you -- and the secrets are all in this witty and nearly wordless book.

Summer 2009 ~ Paperback ~ ISBN 9780763645991 ~ Ages 10-14

Visit Waldo online at!
The travel companion that Waldo fans
can’t get enough of!
Waldo seekers young and old won’t want to hit the road without this paperback compilation of his world-famous excursions, including:
  • Where’s Waldo?
  • Where’s Waldo Now?
  • Where’s Waldo? The Fantastic Journey
  • Where’s Waldo? The Wonder Book
  • Where’s Waldo? In Hollywood

With such a wealth of Waldo at hand, even the most restless travelers will be entertained for hours on end. Don’t leave home without it!
The essential travel companion! Now Waldo can wander everywhere his fans do, thanks to a compact bind-up of five classic adventures.

May 2008 ~ Paperback ~ ISBN 9780763639518 ~ All Ages

My Take on the Books
These books were great! I read them with my girls (at least the ones that were age appropriate) and they were entranced. I could see how kids would enjoy these books and get engrossed in them as their families went on vacation. I know that for us, we will definitely be bringing these on some of the trips that we will be taking this summer.

All of the books have beautiful illustrations within them and great content and I would say that depending on the age of your child, you cannot go wrong with one of these books as a gift!

This post was written for Candlewick Press who provided the complimentary book in exchange for my honest review.

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