A very funny children’s picture book that’s great for teaching kids too.
Title: The Greedy Goat
Author/Illustrator: Petr Horáček
Publisher: Walker Books
Genre: Children’s Picture Book
Description: Goat is greedy. She’s had enough of eating grass. But when she decides to try something different, she gets more than she bargained for.
A hilarious, cautionary farmyard tale that teaches colours and days of the week.
My Review: This is such a funny book it really made me laugh aloud! ‘The Greedy Goat’ has such a simple story but it’s so silly, kids will definitely enjoy reading it again and again. The paperback is wider but shorter than A4 in size and is filled with colourful images on thick glossy paper. The story is simple, Goat is greedy and having had enough grass she tries a variety of different foods, including typical goat things such as eating a shoe! I won’t spoil the rest of the tale but it’s very funny and there are some great images throughout.
The illustrations really make this story so funny. I do like Horáček’s style, each picture looks like a combination of pencil, crayon and paint. Each illustration has a lot of humour in it especially when Goat starts to feel strange after eating so many odd foods. I don’t think this book would be so funny if it wasn’t for the images!
The ending is really great and has a funny twist on the last page that really made me laugh out loud! The story isn’t just fun to read but at the same time kids will learn the days of the week as well as several colours and some animals. And the simple repetitive sentences make this even more enjoyable. I can’t say a bad word about this book and love looking at it over and over again. I think adults will find it fun too. It’s definitely a book I would have loved as a child and would recommend it to everyone, it’s one of my favourites I’ve read this year!
-Thanks to Walker Books for a free copy.
Do you love goats? Find the illustrations funny? Let me know what you think, I’d love to hear from you 🙂 You can find me in in these places too:
An amazing YA thriller with a science fiction edge!
Author: Brendan Reichs
Publisher: Macmillan Children’s Books
Genre: YA Thriller
Description: It’s been happening since Min was eight. Every two years, on her birthday, the same man finds her and murders her in cold blood. But hours later she wakes up in a clearing just outside her hometown – alone, unhurt, and with all evidence of the crime erased. Across the valley, Noah just wants to be like everyone else. But he’s not. Nightmares of murder and death plague him too, though he does his best to hide the signs. And as the world around them begins to spiral towards panic and destruction, the two troubled teens discover that people have been lying to them their whole lives . . . A YA summer blockbuster thriller for fans of The Maze Runner and The 100
My Review: Wow! I love a good sci-fi thriller and this book does not disappoint! Set just a few months into the future this book isn’t so much sci-fi as all thriller and it really keeps you gripped from the start. The first pages launch straight into Min’s story where she is being hunted in her home by someone who’s come to kill her. Despite her best effort to escape him, she ends up being killed but then wakes up unharmed in the woods, as she does every two years. From there the story unfolds at a fast pace and we’re introduced to the main story of an asteroid threatening to destroy the earth.
I don’t want to go into too much detail as it would really spoil the plot and every chapter kept me interested in reading it. The first part of this book follows Min’s story, as well as flashbacks she has from her previous birthdays. Chapters alternate between flashbacks and the story now but are all told in the first person. It’s easy to get into the plot right away and although Min’s story kept me really interested in reading this, I started to enjoy this book even more when we started to see Noah’s point of view. After we’re introduced to Noah’s story, also told in the first person, the story alternates between them both, chapter headings always telling you which character you are following.
I really liked where this story went. Although it does seem a little weird that a bunch of teenagers are investigating such high security things, I loved the way the plot went. There’s never a moment to relax as things in the story are always moving so fast. Although this is set just a little way into the future it will appeal to anyone who enjoys science fiction. The further into the story you go the more sci-fi it ends up being and the ending, the answers the teens are looking for are brilliant! Although I did part-guess the ending (one of many guesses), this book really is unpredictable and I had many failed guesses as to what was happening throughout reading this book.
There are only a few uses of the s swear word and although some dark things happen in the story there isn’t anything graphically violent. The description that this book is like ‘The 100’ is not wrong. I haven’t read the book but seen the series and this has just the same amount of intrigue and suspense! It really is a gripping read and the ending is a satisfying one overall considering you find out the general idea of what’s happening, but the book also has a bit of a cliff-hanger ending. If this was a series it’s one of those where you’d be expecting another series to be made and I really hope there’s another book as the story is far from finished. Answers in this book just let to more questions at the end and some amazing twist happens especially with one character I grew to love reading about which totally surprised me. I’d definitely recommend this book to others and will definitely be reading it again.
If you don’t like books that leave you with questions then you might not like this, but if you are looking for a futuristic thriller with a sci-fi edge that will keep you turning the pages and engrossed in reading it them you won’t be disappointed!
-Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a free copy.
Have you read Nemesis, or plan to? Love a good thriller? Let’s chat! I’m online in these places too:
A great July book haul of books for all ages from Walker Books.
This is a belated book haul of July’s books from the wonderful people at Walker Books. These arrived a little while ago but I’ve been behind in my posts. All these books have been released in July or earlier and the descriptions of each book are a brief snippet I got when offered these for review. Let me know if there’s any books that stand out for you 🙂 To start some middle grade and Where’s Wally? books including a colouring book! :
Where’s Wally? The Colouring Collection by Martin Handford – A transportable Where’s Wally? colouring book to take with you on every adventure! There are pages upon pages of busy black and white pictures to colour, with small splashes of colour printed on the pages to give you inspiration.
Where’s Wally? The Totally Essential Travel Collection by Martin Handford – Seven sensational classic Where’s Wally? books packed into a handy travel-sized edition. All the wondrous Wally worlds in one, with six postcards to colour in and send to your friends
Pigsticks and Harold: the Ends of the Earth! by Alex Milway – Pigsticks and Harold set off on a journey to the Ends of the Earth armed only with a sense of adventure (Pigsticks’), common sense (Harold’s), and a lot of cake. Will they ever find it, and make it back alive?
Terrible, True Tales from the Tower of London by Sarah Kilby – The ravens of the Tower of London bring its fascinating history to life, telling tales of gore, guts and great escapes. Perfect for fans of Horrible Histories.
And here are some great picture books:
We’re Off to Look for Aliens by Colin McNaughton – Dad’s new book has just arrived and his children are sitting down to read his latest adventure… Blasting off into space, Dad’s on the hunt for aliens. But what will his family think of his far-fetched tale?
The Greedy Goat by Petr Horacek – Goat has had enough of eating grass. She wants to try something different – the dog’s food, the pig’s potatoes and even the farmer’s pants. But things go wrong in this hilarious, but cautionary, farmyard tale.
My First ABC by Shirley Hughes – Learning your ABC is fun and easy with Katie and her baby brother, Olly. A delightful introduction to letters and first words from Shirley Hughes, one of the best-known and most-loved picture book creators.
My Frist 123 by Shirley Hughes – Learning to count is fun and easy with Katie and her baby brother, Olly. A delightful introduction to numbers from Shirley Hughes, the author of Dogger
And a special bonus for Harry Potter fans:
Harry Potter: Magical Film Projections: Patronus Charm – Expecto Patronum! Discover the powerful Patronus Charm that Harry Potter and other wizards and witches use to produce a magical guardian. Shine a light through the window on each page to project incredible scenes on the wall or ceiling
So that’s it! So many amazing books released this month and I’ll be reviewing all of them on this blog soon 🙂 Any reviews you’d be interested in reading first?
Any of these books interest you? Let me know in the comments below I’d love to hear from you 🙂 Come check me out in these places too 🙂 :
Are there people following your blog who don’t interact? What are ghost followers and are they worth worrying about?
No this isn’t about literal ghosts but about the blogging kind. I recently read a post by a blogger complaining about ‘Ghost Followers’. What is a Ghost Follower? These are people who follow your blog without liking or commenting on any posts, essentially an invisible follower. The blogger was complaining about the lack of interaction they get from ghost followers and I even read that the blogger felt it necessary to delete those ghost followers from their blog as they were very keen in interactions with other people, something the ghost follower doesn’t do.
This blog post made me think though, would I delete a ghost follower? The answer to me is simple: no. The reason I wouldn’t delete a ghost follower from my blog is because I’ve frequently been a ghost follower myself. So today I thought I’d come up with a list of the types of ghost followers there may be following your blog, based on my own behaviour and that I’ve observed in others. We all would like followers who constantly interact with every post, but in reality it doesn’t always happen, so here are my ideas of the types of ghost followers you may have:
The Late Ghost Follower
Fact is we’re all busy people these days, some more than others. The late ghost will follow your blog but be late in doing so. I’m not always able to keep up with the blogs I follow so I choose to bulk-visit sometimes which means I read a bunch of blog posts from the same blog all in one go. I bulk-visit my wordpress feed too, spending specific days catching up with the content I missed earlier that week/month.
The Busy Ghost Follower
The busy ghost just has too much of their time taken up with other things (realife-family, work, etc.) to visit everyone’s blog religiously. The busy ghost appears similar to the late ghost but the difference is that they don’t always catch up with old blog posts instead just reading on days they can versus days they can’t. Don’t be upset if someone doesn’t like or comment on all your posts. Chances are their lives are just really busy and the busy ghost does their best to follow you when they can.
The Choosy Ghost Follower
These people love to read only some of your posts and ignore others. It’s especially common on blogs with different types of content available like mine. Some followers only choose to read the book posts, others will gravitate to poetry, or articles, or colouring, etc. If a choosy ghost loves to read my book reviews but hates the poetry they’ll ‘ghost’ all the poetry posts until I post another review.
The Logged Out Ghost Follower
As the name suggests these people do read your posts but aren’t always logged in to wordpress to react to them. I sometimes have a few minutes here and there to read a post but I don’t have time to log into my account. Thanks to email notifications I can find new blog posts easily or I might just have a shortcut link to blogs I follow too. Fact is some of your followers may simply be logged out and haven’t got time (or aren’t bothered) to log in to like or comment on something.
The Moody Ghost Follower
This isn’t moody in the bad sense but I sometimes struggle and go through phases of depression where I don’t feel like interacting with anyone so I simply don’t. Or sometimes I don’t even feel like reading your posts yet as I’m not in the right frame of mind. It doesn’t mean I won’t interact at a later date or don’t enjoy your content. I simply don’t feel in the mood to read or comment on something at that moment. Or maybe I don’t feel able to answer a post properly if it’s something I’d like to comment on. Either way the Moody Ghost may just not be in the mood right now.
The Hiding Ghost Follower
Yep, some people might try to hide the fact they are online so they don’t want to interact with anyone’s blog at all as that would give away the fact they are online! I confess I have done this in the past on my old blog sometimes when I was facing difficult questions or interactions on my own blog and basically didn’t want to answer anyone without thinking carefully about what to reply. I didn’t want people to think I was actively ignoring them for liking or commenting on other blog posts so I ‘hid’, pretending I wasn’t really online – the shame! 😮
The I Just Discovered You Ghost Follower
Sometimes someone just discovers your blog but doesn’t have time to read your posts yet so they follow in the hopes of catching up at a later date. They don’t want to lose your blog url among the hundreds of other sites they’ve visited so follow you to remember your site so they can come back and check you out when they have time.
The I Think I Like You Ghost Follower
The sister (or brother) to the I Just Discovered You Ghost Follower, this ghost just found your blog and thinks they’ll like reading your content but isn’t sure yet, so rather than reading back older blog post entries they’d simply like to start following you in the hopes of finding out whether you’re a blogger they’d like to follow.
The Follow Everyone Ghost Follower
This ghost will follow back everyone who follows them and even follow back those that interact with their posts just once. These people will follow you back because they think it’s the right thing to do, or to be nice, but that doesn’t mean they’ll be interested in reading your posts.
The Hateful Ghost Follower
Okay, maybe hateful is a strong word but these people will sometimes choose to follow a blog because they don’t actually like you. It’s unlikely to happen if you don’t post anything that anyone would disagree with or find offensive but sometimes I’ve found the views or some people so crazy and weird that I can’t help but follow them as I’m curious what they’ll say next.
The Can’t Be Bothered Ghost Follower
These are sometimes the sisters (or brothers) to the Hateful Ghost Followers. Rather than dislike you but follow you out of fascination these are people who did follow your blog in the past but for whatever reason don’t care to anymore. Whether that’s because they don’t like you anymore, you angered them with your views, or they simply stopped caring about what content you posted, these ghosts still follow your blog for one reason – they can’t be bothered to un-follow you. As daft and simple as it seems some people will never use the un-follow button, even if they should.
The Copy-Cat Ghost Follower
It’s rare and sometimes flattering but some people will follow a blog to see how it’s done and copy you in a way. These ghosts are often new to bloggerland and can’t help but want to follow in the hopes of copying someone’s style or ideas. This isn’t usually a problem unless they start copying your blog posts too, if they do then there may be a reason to delete them from your follower list, unless you enjoy it of course!
The I Forgot About You Ghost Follower
If you’re not a blogger who posts regularly, say once a week or less then some of your ghost followers could be the I Forgot About You Ghosts. These are people who simply forgot they were following your blog. It’s especially easy to forget if they didn’t know you well to begin with and your one blog post a week gets lost among hundreds of others they follow.
The Please Like Me Ghost Follower
These ghosts are more sinister than their name suggests. They are fellow bloggers who want you to follow them so they follow you. Confusing right? I’ve noticed this happens a lot on twitter but now on WordPress too. WordPress notifies me when someone’s followed my blog, telling me who they are and a link to their blog. This lets me hop on over to their site to see if it’s a blog I’d like to follow myself. Without the notification (and the follow) it’s rare that I’d find this new (to me) blogger’s site. So it’s a clever way these ghosts use to get you to notice them. It’s unlikely that the Please Like Me ghost will ever actually interact with your blog but they sure dowant you to interact with theirs! 😮 😡
So that’s it, my list of your potential ghost followers. What do you think? Have you noticed any of these ghosts following your blog? Are YOU one of these ghosts? Let’s chat I’d love to hear from you 🙂
Let me know your thoughts in the comments below and if you want you can find me in these places too:
Okay so I don’t usually do a mid-month round-up and I’ll still do a proper one for July at the end of the month but I thought I’d give everyone a quick explanation of what’s been happening as I’m sure some of you have noticed my absence this past week. It turns out my summer’s become very busy and my blogging and reading has taken a bit of a backseat while everything’s happening. I’d like to first apologise for not visiting everyone’s blogs much recently, to those I follow I will do my best to catch up, I’ve just been so busy I’ve not yet had time to reply to messages but I will ❤
I’m still going to be blogging but for the next few weeks I might be a little on-off with how often I can get blog posts out. I’ll be setting up posts by scheduling them to go up at 9am as often as I can. That’s my usual time for posting a blog entry in case anyone likes to know. However the occasional blog post might mistakenly be published at the wrong hour (like this one) if I hit the ‘publish’ rather than the ‘schedule’ button.
I’ll post as often as possible and I might be able to schedule quite a few blog posts so it won’t appear like I’m offline much but I just wanted to warn you as I might be a bit slow in replying or reading other’s blogs. As far as reading other blogs I realise I’m a Late or BusyGhost – that will make sense in tomorrow’s (Sunday’s) blog post so please check it out, you might find it funny.
I’m currently reading ‘Nemesis’ by Brendan Reichs a YA thriller which has me hooked at the moment. I’m almost completely finished reading it (I was supposed to have read it already but am behind with all my reading!) so when I’m done look out for a review of this book.
Another book you can look forward to being reviewed this month is ‘The Upstairs Room’ by Kate Murray-Browne. I’ll be happy to give everyone a review of this soon as it’s coming out at the end of the month so watch out for that post!
I’ll be bringing you a belated book haul post too from the wonderful Walker Books. If you head on over to my instagram page you can get a sneak peak of the books that’ll be in the book haul post and of course you can always give me a follow if you like 😉 I’m still new to instagram, not the most fabulous photos yet but I am sometimes a little creative with my shots 🙂
Apart from that I have got a few blog posts in mind (apart from the usual ones) one of which is a further development in what’s happened with the publisher who refused to apologise for wrongfully crediting my review to another website. If you haven’t read about it already please do (click here) and give me your thoughts, I’ll certainly be posting mine up soon.
That’s it for my quick July mid-month round-up. I want to thank everyone who follows this blog and thank those who like and comment here too. It’s knowing someone is reading these posts that keeps me coming back here. I’ll be as active as I can over the summer (at least the next few weeks) and hopefully all will settle down soon and you’ll not notice my recent absence 🙂
How is your July so far? Got anything planned for the rest of the month?
By the way – is anyone watching Wimbledon this year? If so who do you/ did you want to win? Let me know I’m tennis mad I am 😀
A dark YA historical fiction novel that is The Sunday Times Children’s Book of the Year 2016
Author: Mal Peet (&Meg Rosoff)
Publisher: Walker Books
Genre: YA Historical Fiction
Description: Born of a brief encounter between his mother and an African sailor on the streets of Liverpool in the 1900s, Beck lives a life that is defined by a longing to find his place in the world. Orphaned and shipped to Canada and the untender care of the Catholic Brothers, he finds little humanity as he journeys westwards. What will it take for Beck to finally find home?
My Review: ‘Beck’ is a YA historical fiction novel which unfortunately just didn’t hold my attention. Set, in the beginning, in Liverpool but mostly Canada in the early 1900s the story follows Beck, an orphaned mixed race boy who finds it hard to find a place he can call home. The first few pages are actually a backstory explaining how Beck came to be, how his parents met, but then the book really starts with Beck being taken to the orphanage and what happens there and beyond.
Although the start of the novel was a bit strange to me, focusing on Beck’s parents and their encounter, I did get into this, at first. It’s not long before the orphanage ships Beck along with other boys to Canada and this is where the real story starts. I won’t go into too much detail so I don’t spoil it for anyone but this part of the book for me was the best. What happens to Beck while staying with the Christian Brothers is very dark but also very compelling. Although I could guess at the start that Beck would face these sorts of problems, it’s what actually happens and the way things are described that kept my attention throughout this section of the book. I did think that this story would continue especially after a particular brutal incident, however this part of the novel just ends with another section starting in a different location completely.
The book has four parts and each part is a separate section of Beck’s life. Usually I don’t mind a story moving along a few months or even years like this, but each part is almost like a separate short story/novella with little reference to what happened previously and although we sometimes see Beck remembering something there’s never a deep look at how affected he is by the events of his past. In fact the whole novel took on this distant feel to it that I didn’t like and it makes me question whether it’s a YA novel at all. For me YA means you get to know the characters and what they are thinking but Beck is a very closed character. We see what he’s doing but we rarely really get inside his head. It also didn’t help that each time a new part started there is a backstory of the other characters that Beck has just met. The back story of the last two parts had so much information about Bone and then Grace that it made me lose interest entirely as I really wanted to continue Beck’s story but had to wade through many pages of other people’s back story first. While the backstory was interesting and helped in understanding the next part I wish it had been explained in a better way, in bits, like most books do.
This novel has some use of the s and f swear words with the f word having multiple spellings due to the dialogue being written as you hear it, with accents such as: “An’ yer don’ wanna go down there. Tha’s right, ennit”, which I don’t enjoy reading in books especially modern ones as it slows down my reading. The whole book is dark with violence and abuse which can be hard to read. Because of this I wouldn’t recommend this book to anyone but a mature teen and older.
While the whole book had a lot of potential I just didn’t enjoy reading this. The ending is a good and satisfying one but with no real resolution to what happened at the beginning. I liked parts of the story and each part on its own would have made an interesting story but together this whole book just doesn’t work for me and it’s a shame because I really thought it would get deeper into the mind of Beck and the effects of what happened to him. Some parts of the book read differently too, with parts of the descriptions bordering on too flowery and other parts not. but maybe this is due to the fact that Mal Peet the author died before finishing this novel and some of the text was written by Meg Rosoff. I don’t know if this had any effect on the overall plot but this book just didn’t appeal to me, despite numerous good review for it, and I won’t be reading it again.
-Thanks to Walker Books for a free copy.
Have you read Beck or another Mal Peet novel? Let me know what you thought, or if you think it’s a book you’d like to read? I’d love to hear from you 🙂 Chat with me in these places too:
A poem commemorating the loss of Humpty the Hippo ❤
A few days ago I found out about the sad news of a beautiful creature who sadly died. In care of the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, a wonderful charity that rescues and raises orphaned elephants and other animals in Africa before returning them to a free and natural life in the wild, a beautiful baby hippo called ‘Humpty’ captured everyone’s hearts. Humpty was rescued after being found alone stuck in a drying mud pool. Alone and without her mother she would have died had it not been for the wonderful people at the Trust who rescued her and then tried to raise her. It was the first baby hippo they had every tried to raise and she was doing very well until she became suddenly ill and died shortly after. As a deep animal lover I was touched by Humpty’s rescue and have felt so saddened by her sudden death. She did, however, have several beautiful months of happiness which she wouldn’t have without being rescued.
Humpty’s death, like the death of so many of our beloved creatures and loved ones can be very hard to cope with, but we must focus on the happy times and the love we have for them. I’ve written a poem which I hope many may relate to. It was my poem for Humpty, but it’s also what I felt when a close individual died.
Goodbye Dear Soul
A beautiful soul, now have passed,
You left this world, all too fast.
A void now where you did depart,
An empty space in my heart.
Your time was not meant so soon,
If only you, I could cocoon.
Protect and save from life askew,
Now empty space, I have in lieu.
Your stay was not meant to be, Tether to world, now set free.
Your beauty, light, will shine always,
Love in heart, a burning blaze.
Remember you for evermore,
Your soul now free, at peace to soar.
To read more about what happened please click here. This is a video commemorating beautiful Humpty:
Feel free to leave any comments you have ❤ You can find me in these places online too: