• Y. Y. Chan

Book Recommendations (July 2021)

Last month, I was a week late in posting my recommendations. To make up for it, I had added an extra book! (Usually I do six unless there is a special reason) So here are this month's selections. There's a wide range here, including a biography, laugh-out-loud hilarious stories, and even a baby seminary book.



A Most Clever Girl: How Jane Austen Discovered Her Voice by Jasmine A. Stirling (Author), Vesper Stamper (Illustrator)

Book Description:

Ages: 6 to 12


Witty and mischievous Jane Austen grew up in a house overflowing with words. As a young girl, she delighted in making her family laugh with tales that poked fun at the popular novels of her time, stories that featured fragile ladies and ridiculous plots. Before long, Jane was writing her own stories-uproariously funny ones, using all the details of her life in a country village as inspiration.


In times of joy, Jane's words burst from her pen. But after facing sorrow and loss, she wondered if she'd ever write again. Jane realized her writing would not be truly her own until she found her unique voice. She didn't know it then, but that voice would go on to capture readers' hearts and minds for generations to come.


Why I like this book:

Oh, how can you not like this book? I had watched Becoming Jane and have been fascinated about her life since. There aren't many books out there about how she grew up as a young girl - especially for young children to read - so when I saw this, I knew I had to get it. I ordered the hardcover version instead of getting the eBook (there's no paperback version), and I'm so glad I did! The illustrations are so beautiful and detailed. I'm in awe of them! Some of her famous quotes are also incorporated into the book to tell her story and they work so well. There is also a page with more information about Austen, as well as a note from the author and illustrator, providing some background information about their process of creating the book. You can tell that this book had been very well-researched by both the author and illustrator. I will definitely treasure this beautiful book and read it often to be inspired by Austen's journey whenever I feel like I have lost my voice. If you have daughters or teach girls, I highly recommend this book. If you are fan of Austen, you need to get this book. If you have a passion for writing, you will find this book inspiring and motivating. You will not regret reading this and admiring the gorgeous illustrations.


The Sprightly Carrot's Dream by Jennifer Tremblay (Author, Illustrator)

Book Description:


Sprightly the carrot has the perfect life… for a normal carrot.

However, Sprightly is not your normal carrot.

He wants to become a flower.

Dave the daisy and the other flowers make fun of Sprightly, but his upbeat nature prevails. With the help of Ralph the dog, creativity, and hard work, the sprightly carrot proves that even the most unlikely dreams can come true in this funny, heart warming adventure.


Why I like this book:

I really enjoyed this book! It's full of imagination. The illustrations are really vivid and engaging to look at - done by the author herself!. It's definitely a fun book to read with kids. I love that it also teaches several lessons without being too obvious or preachy. 1. Dream big and don't give up, no matter what others say. 2. Importance of friendship and being loyal to one another. 3. Stand up to bullies and not be afraid. The ending was surprising and unexpected, but I won't ruin that for you. Get a copy of the book and read it for yourself!

Magical Mia: Kindness is Contagious by Julie Cassetta (Author), Elena Taranenko (Illustrator)

Book Description:

Ages: 3 to 11


MAGIC IS REAL and is within each one of us!

Meet Mia, a girl who knows her own power to create change. This magical soon-to-be series inspires and empowers children to change the world. With one simple act of kindness, Mia changes the course of someone’s day, and that magic spreads far beyond just one person.

Magical Mia - Kindness is Contagious is an inspirational story of friendship, connection, and the ripple effect of our actions. This is a must-read for every child!

Why I like this book:

This is such a beautiful book that every child should read. The message is so important. So many people take other people's kindness for granted, or feel entitled to certain privileges, yet they don't realize that it is important to first be kind to others themselves. Sometimes it is a very small and simple action but it could change someone's day, their feelings, their thoughts and actions. I enjoyed this beautiful rhyming story and it is sure to bring a smile your face as you read this book. If kindness is contagious, what a wonderful world it would be!


A Dog's Bucket List by Karen Olson (Author), Hestia Nura (Illustrator)

Book Description:

Ages: 6 to 8


What does a dog who was once abandoned do after he finds his forever family? He makes an unusual bucket list - be a flying squirrel? A detective? A skydiver? No problem! With this entertaining short chapter book, Nike tells the quirky tales of how he thinks he can toss each of these into his big red bucket.


Why I like this book:

This book made me feel so many different emotions. I was sad to read that Nike had been abandoned and hurt in the past, but my heart warmed when he found his new family with loving humans. He makes a bucket list of things he wants to do and they are so funny, imaginative and inspiring at the same time. It's a book that you'd want to read again and again. I love how adventurous and silly Nike is and how much he makes his humans laugh! I can't believe this sweet dog could ever be abandoned! It touched my heart and even inspired me to make my own bucket list of crazy things to do and live life to the fullest!


The Pirates of Monkey Island by Becci Murray (Author)

Book Description:

Ages: 3 to 10


The Pirates of Monkey Island is a BEGINNER level StoryQuest adventure book

One-Eyed Brenda and Jimmy Smallhands are good pirates. They're the kind of pirates who feed your bones to the fishes then take their grannies out for a nice pot of tea and a slice of cake. But now monkey-pirates have stolen their treasure chest and they need YOUR help to find it.

Will you face the fearsomely cute Captain Fluffy-Beard to recover the coins? Can you outsmart Big Baboon Bob and survive Stinky Silverback Shelly's armpits to win the loot? And will you find the StoryQuest Star along the way? Good luck, mighty StoryQuester - if anyone can find this treasure, it's YOU.


Why I like this book:

I really enjoyed this storyquest book! Every step was a mystery and it was so cool to get to choose what to do along the way. I did have to redo some and go back and make different choices but it was fun to see where each choice would take me. I imagine that this book would have been complicated to plan and write with multiple plots and storylines and possible outcomes! Super impressed by this author and how she managed to write this brilliant book!! Looking forward to checking out her other books!

(Stay tuned for her upcoming release: Azalea Fern and the Last Ruin of the Extinct which will be out in August! I will be sharing more about it as I'm part of her Bookstagram Tour!)

Hannah the Honeybee and the Surprising Adventure by Lyn Rose (Author)

Book Description:

Ages: 4 to 8


"Hannah the Honeybee and the Surprising Adventure” is the second picture book in the series “Hannah the Honeybee and Friends” about the life and adventures of Hannah and her best friend, Collette. In this second book readers are shown that we should not judge others by their appearance, how they speak or any other differences they might have to us.

The story begins with a bee collapsing in front of Hannah and her honeybee family. True to Hannah’s character, she immediately goes to the bee’s aid. Taking her back to the hive causes quite the commotion though because the injured bee is a different colour to the other bees. The rest of the colony is not happy that Hannah has brought a stranger into their home.

Will fear and a quick judgment from the colony prevent the bee from receiving the help she needs? Or will kindness prevail?


Why I like this book:

I really enjoyed the first Hannah the Honeybee book and this one is even better! I love that it talks about the issue of race and introduces the Malaysian language as well. Hannah and her friends are very kind and accepting to Bunga, a bee who accidentally got trapped and boarded a plane from Malaysia to Australia. It's such a great story full of adventure and a lesson in acceptance. Highly recommended.


ABCs of Bible Characters (Baby Seminary) by Sunny Kang (Author), Alexandro Ockyno (Illustrator)

Book Description:

Ages: Baby to 10


What's more important for your child: Church or School?

Why not be excellent at BOTH!

ABCs of Bible Characters was written by a preacher, teacher, AND parent! Imagine introducing Jesus to your children while simultaneously teaching them the ABCs.

This book is different because it's written to position parents to be the spiritual leaders AND academic teachers of the home.


Why I like this book:

As many of you know, I am a Christian. I was raised in a Christian family but I didn't really come to faith until I was 32. I did not study the Bible much as a kid and never paid much attention at Sunday School or during sermons. I was not familiar with all the characters of the Bible (still not!) When I saw this book, I immediately wanted to get it so I could learn more about the Bible characters. It is so helpful and informative! It teaches about the different characters, why they are important in the Bible and how they have been changed and transformed because of God. It's a wonderful way to introduce Bible stories for the young kids and even adults who may not be familiar with all the characters. I certainly learned a lot reading it! This ABC book of Bible characters would definitely be great for all churches for Sunday School and Christian families to have in their homes. I wish I had read this as a kid!

Well, that wraps up this month's book recommendations! I hope you enjoyed reading about these awesome books and find something you like to check out! If you have a good book to recommend, submit it to the Kids' Corner page to be considered in next month's list of recommendations. They can be books you have written, or books you have enjoyed. Happy reading!


* Disclaimer: This post contains Affiliate links.


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