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Weekend Links: Past Book Adventures Worth Revisiting

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weekend links

It’s time for Weekend Links and OH, what a busy week it’s been. So much going on at JIAB and so much on the way.

I’ve been in the mood lately to look back on past posts here at JIAB and let me tell you; it’s like visiting old friends! I am so blessed to be able to review and “jump into” amazing children’s books while encouraging families to pull books off of shelves and stories off of pages. I thought I would take moment this weekend to re-share some of the older, but still wonderful, book reviews that I have created. These books are unique, inspiring and something that is a “must read” for families. The accompanying crafts and activities have been a hit too!


Moonbird: A Year on the Wind with the Great Survivor B95 by Phillip Hoose

Meet a bird known as a rufa red knot, named B-95 aka Moonbird. Scientists call him Moonbird because in his lifetime this robin sized shore bird has flown the distance to the moon and halfway back again.


Read about Moonbird HERE.

Children of the Tipi: Corn Husk Dolls

We’ve spent another pleasant moment in a great resource called “Children of the Tipi:Life in the Buffalo Days” by Michael Oren Fitzgerald.  This book is a treasure of what it was like for children to grow up in the world of pre-reservation days. Taking archived photos, this book gives us a first hand look into the buffalo days of the Plains Indians. This book was amazing, and we had fun making corn husk dolls.

Corn Husk Doll Crafts

Read Children of the Tipi HERE.

A Misty of Chincoteague Field Trip

One of my favorite books as a little girl was Misty of Chincoteague by Marguerite Henry. This year will mark the 88th year that the Pony Swim has been celebrated. Just off the coast of Virginia lies two islands Assateague and Chincoteague. The last Wednesday and Thursday of July the annual Pony Penning is held and the goal is to move around 150 horses from Assateague to Chincoteague and then back again. 10,000 spectators show up every year to see the pony swim and participate in the pony auction before they swim the ponies back to Assateague island.

Misty of Chincoteague

Read Misty of the Chincoteague HERE

The Fairy Garden (and a fairy garden and fairy house tutorial)




Breaking News! Proof that Dragons are indeed REAL!

Maybe this news prompted you to drop your sandwich or even roll your eyes with disbelief….but I am here to tell you; Dragons are Real! How do I know? I have proof. In fact, I have MORE than proof! As a child I had a Dragon friend for two whole summers in Gotland, Sweden.

I shared this story with Rocco during an interview at the wonderful KitLit TV.

My newest book, Dragons are Real  tells this story in vibrant color and I am so honored that I was able to team up with renown children’s book illustrator, .

Michael Welply was born in London, England and raised in Winnipeg, Canada. He studied art in Winnipeg and Paris. He has illustrated over 80 books in Europe and in North America ranging from historical work to fantasy and fairy tales. He has two grown children, three grandchildren and currently lives in central France with his wife. It was Michael’s talent and vision that allowed us to accurately (and magically) capture what my brother and I experienced with our dragon friend for two summers.
Michael Welply

Dragons are real
SO basically what I am trying to tell everyone is that all of the fairy tales, myths and legends that have been told about dragons over the years are WRONG!

Dragons are not only Real, they are different from what you’ve ever imagined.

Dragons are Real
This book isn’t for everyone. It’s only for those BRAVE enough to go looking for dragons in the most usual of places.

Once you find your nearest dragon you’ll need to know a few basic skills.

Are You:
 – Good at finding hidden things, like dragons in disguise ?
 –  Wanting a best friend who will take you for rides on their back ? OK we missed
      an important detail….riding on their backs while flying through the air ?
 – Good at telling jokes and riddles ?
 – Good at roasting hot dogs and marshmallows in a constant stream of fire. Don’t
     worry no fire protective gear needed.
 –  Willing to be a dance partner ?
 – Willing to listen and share poetry, especially rhymes ?
 – Are you clever enough to read a Dragon’s secret message? And then of course
     be able to send one back your local and friendly dragon ? Just a reminder that
     Dragon’s don’t text. They love to send secret messages.
If you’ve said a loud “YES” to even half of the above questions, chances are this book is just right for YOU!

As readers turn the pages and learn the truth about Dragons, they will see that the fiercest beasts in known history can actually be the best of friends. It’s a lesson in finding companionship in the most unusual of places. Dragons are Real is a magical book filled with stunning illustrations and hints that dragon are indeed all around us 🙂

Dragons are Real

Dragons are Real is now available for purchase on both Amazon and Gumroad. We are also offering a special free bonus gift of a Dragons Are Real Inspiration Activity Guide when you purchase your copy of this enchanting picture book.

I also received exceptionally exciting news a few weeks ago and keeping the news of this huge honor has been hard! Here is the email that popped into my inbox that had me doing the Happy Dance for weeks:

Hi Valarie,
I hope you are well. I’m following up to let you know that your review for “Dragons are Real” was selected by our Indie Editors to be featured in Kirkus Reviews 7/1 Issue. Congratulations! Your review will appear as one of about 35 reviews in  the Indie section of the 7/1 Kirkus Reviews magazine which is sent out to over 5,200 industry professionals (librarians, publishers, agents, etc.) Less than 10% of our Indie reviews are chosen for this, so it’s a great honor. The digital version of this issue will be available for me to send to you on July 5th, and the print version will be available in a week or so after that.
All the best & congratulations again,
Crystal Timbeross

Client Promotions & Advertising Associate 

Dragons are Real
To everyone who helped make this book not only a huge success, but let the story of Dragons among us be told, THANK YOU!

3 thoughts on “Weekend Links: Past Book Adventures Worth Revisiting

  1. They certainly do look like they are worth revisiting! Thanks for sharing on the KidLit Blog Hop ?

  2. Thanks for posting these to the Kid Lit Blog Hop. It is nice to revisit books from time to time. I mean, we all have our favorite books we like to look at so, maybe we will find new favorites.

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